Spit tests – an opinion from Port Hope

spitBeginning today, Toronto police will be asking motorists to ‘volunteer’ a saliva sample they intend to use in a new drug screening program. So new, as a matter of fact, that the method of testing hasn’t been invented yet. But the police seem to think unless they take it upon themselves to collect random samples from the public, research will slow to a crawl, victim of all that laboratory stuff like double-blind tests and placebos and paid subjects even.

The police promise that the content of whatever is found in your spittle, no matter what might be discovered by whatever method will never result in charges being laid.

I came across this rather alarming little bit of information by way of NewsTalk1010’s The Round Table this morning.

Of the four panelists, three are died-in-the-wool conservatives, most notably Tim Hudak, former leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party. Also along for the ride were right-wingers Christie Blatchford, columnist with The National Post and Lorrie Goldstein, columnist with The Toronto Sun. As well, of indeterminate political bent, was James Laidlaw.

The show, usually moderated by John Moore, was hosted this morning by Barb Degullio.

Why am I dwelling on the make-up of the panel? Why? Because three out of four, the three conservatives, all would be more than happy, in the interest of law and order, to supply a little spit for the cops.

What harm could it possibly do?

Tim Hudak, an ass-kisser from way back, went so far as to pull out the old saw “Why not -I’ve got nothing to hide.”

Blatchford and Goldstein, authority loving writers writing for authority loving newspapers, couldn’t think of a single bad thing to say about the police initiative.

No one bothered raising any questions about their sample being mixed up with someone else’s or whether refusing to go along with the random harvest of saliva could cause you to be suspected of something. Nope. None of that Debbie Downer stuff. What could possibly go wrong? And a Merry Christmas to you too officer! When you’re done with my spit, would you mind returning it….along with whatever threads of my civil rights you might find laying around on the lab floor?

Saturday’s Globe&Mail, in a feature about suicides involving the TTC and GO Transit, said GO’s post-incident procedures include mandatory drug and alcohol testing for the train crew. GO Trains, except for the Milton line, are operated by Bombardier crews. When I was a GO engineer, CN supplied those engineers and we sure as hell were not subjected to drug and alcohol testing after a suicide or any other traumatic event. And there were many.

Our union at the time argued, and supplied medical evidence, that after a person witnesses a suicide their bodies begin producing chemicals naturally and that in some cases those chemicals can mimic certain drugs or alcohol. Thus, the tests were compromised.

And besides, other than being the instrument of death, what the hell has the operating crew got to do with a person taking their own life? What could they possibly done to affect a different outcome?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Testing of GO crews after a suicide is nothing more than a cheap excuse to exercise a misguided authority.

I’ll say this for the three conservative panelists this morning; as far as ass-kissing goes, their ass-kissing is a cut above your garden variety ass-kissing. Conservatives, by their nature, crave a strong hand, authority they can really look up to -no matter how much that authority looks down on them.

To the credit of NewsTalk1010, the resident lawyer, Edward Pruschi, had earlier made it very clear (but not, apparently, clear enough for Blatchford, Goldstein and Hudak) that the best thing to do if a Metro cop asks for a spit sample is to simply decline.

I couldn’t agree more. Beginning today, Toronto police will be asking motorists to ‘volunteer’ a saliva sample they intend to use in a new drug screening program. So new, as a matter of fact, that the method of testing hasn’t been invented yet. But the police seem to think unless they take it upon themselves to collect random samples from the public, research will slow to a crawl, victim of all that laboratory stuff like double-blind tests and placebos and paid subjects even.

The police promise that the content of whatever is found in your spittle, no matter what might be discovered by whatever method will never result in charges being laid.

I came across this rather alarming little bit of information by way of NewsTalk1010’s The Round Table this morning.

Of the four panelists, three are died-in-the-wool conservatives, most notably Tim Hudak, former leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party. Also along for the ride were right-wingers Christie Blatchford, columnist with The National Post and Lorrie Goldstein, columnist with The Toronto Sun. As well, of indeterminate political bent, was James Laidlaw.

The show, usually moderated by John Moore, was hosted this morning by Barb Degullio.

Why am I dwelling on the make-up of the panel? Why? Because three out of four, the three conservatives, all would be more than happy, in the interest of law and order, to supply a little spit for the cops.

What harm could it possibly do?

Tim Hudak, an ass-kisser from way back, went so far as to pull out the old saw “Why not -I’ve got nothing to hide.”

Blatchford and Goldstein, authority loving writers writing for authority loving newspapers, couldn’t think of a single bad thing to say about the police initiative.

No one bothered raising any questions about their sample being mixed up with someone else’s or whether refusing to go along with the random harvest of saliva could cause you to be suspected of something. Nope. None of that Debbie Downer stuff. What could possibly go wrong? And a Merry Christmas to you too officer! When you’re done with my spit, would you mind returning it….along with whatever threads of my civil rights you might find laying around on the lab floor?

Saturday’s Globe&Mail, in a feature about suicides involving the TTC and GO Transit, said GO’s post-incident procedures include mandatory drug and alcohol testing for the train crew. GO Trains, except for the Milton line, are operated by Bombardier crews. When I was a GO engineer, CN supplied those engineers and we sure as hell were not subjected to drug and alcohol testing after a suicide or any other traumatic event. And there were many.

Our union at the time argued, and supplied medical evidence, that after a person witnesses a suicide their bodies begin producing chemicals naturally and that in some cases those chemicals can mimic certain drugs or alcohol. Thus, the tests were compromised.

And besides, other than being the instrument of death, what the hell has the operating crew got to do with a person taking their own life? What could they possibly done to affect a different outcome?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Testing of GO crews after a suicide is nothing more than a cheap excuse to exercise a misguided authority.

I’ll say this for the three conservative panelists this morning; as far as ass-kissing goes, their ass-kissing is a cut above your garden variety ass-kissing. Conservatives, by their nature, crave a strong hand, authority they can really look up to -no matter how much that authority looks down on them.

To the credit of NewsTalk1010, the resident lawyer, Edward Pruschi, had earlier made it very clear (but not, apparently, clear enough for Blatchford, Goldstein and Hudak) that the best thing to do if a Metro cop asks for a spit sample is to simply decline.

I couldn’t agree more.

4 comments for “Spit tests – an opinion from Port Hope

  1. Dan Christie
    December 19, 2016 at 3:46 pm

    The piece actually ends with “I couldn’t agree more.” From some reason the article, like it’s author, repeats itself.

  2. Wally Keeler
    December 25, 2016 at 12:30 pm

    “Conservatives, by their nature, crave a strong hand, authority they can really look up to -no matter how much that authority looks down on them.”

    The same ole same ole crock of partisanshit. Left, right, centre, progressive, political shibboleths and stereotypes with reduced imagination sully the blandscape of life. In the name of the poetical, I spit on the political. Now that’s a real dissident.

    Merry Christmas

    • mike wladyka
      December 27, 2016 at 11:28 am

      More spittle from Wallace Keeler.

      Happy New Year !

      • Wally Keeler
        January 6, 2017 at 12:58 pm

        That’s poetical spit, not political spit. HNY!

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