Ashley Madison: doing everything but the numbers, apparently

So, a few days back, it came to light that a public-spirited group of extortionists had hacked a website catering to marital infidelity with a brand name much like, ummm, Mashley Addleson. They kindly offered not to release the names of everybody signed up to the site in exchange for a whack of cash.

The web, predictably, went Twitteristic.

In a similarly public-spirited vein, I gather that Mashley Addleson has since contacted individual users with offers to do a "full delete" that would vacuum out all trace of an account. For smaller, individual whacks of cash.

Terrific philanthropists, all of 'em...

And as ummm, investigative journalists everywhere started delving deeper into this event, it also arose that the site was claiming some 200,000 subscribers in Ottawa, or one in five residents. According to one Brit rag possessed of ethics nearly as dubious as Mashley's, that figure would make this sleepy burg the world's "love rat capital".

After pondering on that for longer than I shoulda, I looked up 2011 Statistics Canada census figures for the Ottawa Census Metropolitan Area.

So I obviously have waaay too much time on my paws, but this whole story really does beg the question: why the hell hasn't anybody in the media bothered to do this? ** It was like, 20 minutes' work, even allowing for the fact that paws and keyboards do not play well together. Easy story! Just, maybe, not a sexy story. Since a CMA isn't just the city whose name it takes -- a CMA extends beyond city boundaries proper -- I figured that the cachement area would roughly cover people in surrounding small towns who might craftily list their residence as "Ottawa". Because that's just the kind of convenient little cover story that the thinking cheater might figure would reduce their chances of being identified and outed in a smaller place.

Say, "Russell Township" or "Ashton Station" or something. Small towns bein' what they are, everybody in one likely has thoughts about which of the neighbours might be foolin' around, but no sense in giving 'em outright confirmation, right?

Now, as an ancient coyote whose eyes are now nearly as fuzzy as his ass, I am certainly open to the possibility that I'm misreading a government statistical agency table. I am therefore open to correction. *

Since the current government screwed over the reliability of the official census some time back, the government statistical agency is also open to correction. But I digress. Where the hell was I? Oh, yeah. So, anyway, what I think I'm seeing is a total of 411,110 people who are married/common-law in this CMA.

Which means that according Mashley Addleson, on average close to 1 in every 2 married persons in Ottawa CMA is steppin' out. Doin' the dirty. Bonkin' outta wedlock. Which seems, you know, a touch... flagrant. If not downright delicto.

Of course, there are other takes on the situation. When I confided my doubts to the Independent Observer (remember him...? We still talk.) he, being of a practical frame of mind, just waved his hand and said, "Should we trust the statistics of a company that encourages cheating...?"

Oh yeah. Right. Nevermind...

*... So it turns out, inevitably, that after that pretty little sketch of Census Metropolitan Areas, someone with a far more obsessive eye for detail than I has pointed out that I did not in fact use CMA figures, or link to them. The numbers are for Ottawa, the city proper.

But it also transpires, happily, that the fragrant flagrance of that one-in-two ratio holds. So there's that.

Figures. Us coyotes are not built for trapping errors. In my defence I will say that we are exquisitely tuned to catch small rodents, partridges, grouse and your cat. On the fly! But owls? Don't get me started on owls. Them things is fiends...

** Although, to the eventual satirical credit of the Last Week Tonight research team, John Oliver finally did...


And now a message from the Party of Fiscal, ummm, Responsibility...

Just, maybe, not the definition of responsibility they thought they meant. . .


Mike Duffy on the taxpayers' dime

Some of us were knocking idly around the echoing expanses of the mothballed ESI product development labs over the weekend, raking out the mountain of junk mail under the slot by the door and checking to see if the little red blinky lights on the smoke alarms were still being irritating enough, when the Research Director alerted us that we were in in midst of what may only be called a serendipitous convergence of seemingly-disparate events.

First, Week Three of the Senator Mike Duffy Trial of the Decade (TM) was cannonballing toward us like a watermelon on a waterslide. And now the Royal Canadian Mint is urging people to enter its keen-o Design a Coin for Canada's 150th Anniversary contest online. The web page of which loads aggravatingly slowly, just so you know before you click on that link. Clicked already? Oops. Sorry! I digress. Where were we? Oh yeah:

"I'm kind of surprised nobody has entered a Mike Duffy on the Taxpayers' Dime design yet," said the Research Director, staring pointedly at us through his safety reading glasses.

We'd already started doodling something to celebrate Nickelback's decade of artistic integrity and photo ops in which their lead singer and the current PM shamelessly try to use each other for publicity purposes. But hey. We know a better idea when we hear it. And the Research Director has lasers. We picked out some different-coloured crayons and got to work.

So here you go, Royal Canadian Mint. It's a honey. You're welcome. And, uh, Canada? All we ask is that when it comes time, you remember which trained economic snake-oil marketer it was who put Senator Duffy on your public dime and told him to have at it, especially in the small matter of billing ya for purely partisan events, in the first place. . .


More like doggerel. . .

News Item: Supreme Court of Canada strikes down minimum sentencing law as unconstitutional.

Just like the last half-dozen other pieces of badly-thought-out and hastily-rammed-through HarperCo centrepiece legislation that have shown up before it.

Now, I'm just a dumb ol' semi-mythical coyote. So obviously not nearly as smart as the guy who runs roughshod over the country 'n all. But I think there might be a pattern developing here...


Jason Kenney: Maybe a brain transplant would help...?

"O, Harper Can-a-Duh,

VainGloreee-us and Free-eeee *

Our Bombs are Smart,

Much Smarter than Me-eeee..."

* Actual freedom may vary, depending on definition and pending legislation.


Pay equity. . . ?

It has come to our notice that today is International Women's Day.

It also occurs that, what with this being the day we must prostrate ourselves before myriad electronic devices in frogmarched obeisance to the ridiculous concept of Daylight Saving Time, International Women's Day this year is only 23 hours long.

That these devices hold in common only a wildly divergent buncha crappy user interfaces that are not claw or paw-friendly, I might splenetically add, is merely my trademark digression. Hah. Got that dealt with...

Anyway. Since most of the women ESIs seem to have been otherwise indisposed for some months... OK, OK, some years... I guess it remains to us decidedly male-ish semimythical coyotes to furrow our furry brows and ponder whether this irony is, perhaps, some kinda cosmic editorial comment on the long standing and continuing lack of parity between women's wages and men's, or maybe a slam on the way women generally get short-changed when they have to pay more for their shirts, haircuts, dry cleaning and dog knows what-all else...

Just sayin'...


Breaking (pelvis) news...

It has come to our attention that while the Short Guy was obsessing about certain junior priests in New Brunswick -- and oh, how the mighty have fallen, although I think he's lost weight so maybe rehab helped somewhat -- our Chief Magistrate here in Ottawa was out getting wrecked during a driving lesson on a snowtercycle. In Osgoode, no less.

Sounds like he's out for the next four to six weeks, which as we all know, is an eternity in the dog-eat-dog world of municipal politics. Given the nature of the injury, he's probably in a certain amount of pain also, which is never a good thing.

Now, us coyotes generally disapprove of snowtercycles, especially in Osgoode. Guys out there, under the highly mistaken impression that we may have formed some sorta unsavoury intent toward their pet cats, chase us and try to mow us down with 'em. (Which when ya think about it, is pretty unsavoury in its own right. Unlike delicious, delicous cats. Ummmm. Perhaps I digress a digression too far...?)

Errr, anyway. Despite our distaste for the vehicle of his misfortune, we of the Irregulars who still keep a paw in this blog ancienne wish Mayor Watson a speedy recovery.

We even have suggestions about how he might quicken his return to public life. Although, given the deep cold which has for some weeks settled over the city and made life a trial for those uncharmed by record-length skating on the Rideau Canal, we hope his accident did not leave him any kind of post-traumatic aversion to vehicles equipped with snowmobile tracks... dogspeed on your journey to wellness, sir!


Father Joe in Moncton

Local media reported last week that our old friend Father Joe Leclair is now ministering to parishioners in the Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity Parish in New Brunswick. [Citizen CBC]

Assistant Priest Fr. Joe LeClair

We had worried that Father Joe's time in the corrections system would lead to his having to find new work, but instead he will only have to find new routes to work. He will be at four different churches, not just the one next door to his dwelling.

He'll be serving: Holy Family Church in Moncton, Holy Ghost Church in Riverside-Albert, Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Riverview, and St. Jude’s Church in Salisbury.

Father Joe, we want to support you in your new life, here is a Google map you can use to get to all the places you'll be needing to go.

Also, you might want to start talking about what a big fan you are of classic Canadian rockers like the Tragically Hip and the Stampeders, and mystical performers like Hypnotist Cyrus.

p.s. We can offer a compensation package to anyone in Moncton at Easter who gets us photos of Father Joe doing Jesus on the cross in a loincloth.