Sunday, February 04, 2007

Daily Digest February 4, 2007

The DAILY DIGEST: INFORMATION and OPINION from ST. JOHN’S to VICTORIA.

EDITORIALs

ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - It’s time to walk the walk
http://www.thetelegram.com/index.cfm?sid=1223&sc=3

HALIFAX HERALD - The danger of Chavismo
http://thechronicleherald.ca/Editorial/557069.html

TORONTO STAR - Senate poverty probe time for bold thinking
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/177819

TORONTO STAR - Cheney delusional on Iraq policy
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/177817

WINNIPEG SUN - Liberals invited Tory attacks
http://winnipegsun.com/Comment/Editorial/2007/02/04/3522625.html

CALGARY SUN - Political football
http://www.calgarysun.com/cgi-bin/publish.cgi?p=171079&x=articles&s=comment

EDMONTON SUN - A matter of trust
http://www.edmontonsun.com/Comment/Commentary/2007/02/04/3522926.html


ISSUES

CANADIAN FORCES
New chief for Nato Afghan force
UK General David Richards has handed over control of the Nato-led force in Afghanistan to US General Dan McNeill at a ceremony in the capital, Kabul.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/6328825.stm

http://www.thestar.com/News/article/178129

U.S. in Afghanistan May Mean Harder Line
U.S. Leadership in Afghanistan Could Signal Harder Line; Airstrike Kills Taliban Leader
http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory?id=2848479

Afghan forces vow to retake town
Afghan government and Nato forces say they are preparing to retake the southern town of Musa Qala which was overrun by the Taleban two days ago.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/6328165.stm

Canadian troops in Afghanistan targeted in suicide bombing
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/afp/070204/canada/afghanistan_unrest_nato

Taliban leader killed by NATO air strike on town
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/capress/afghan_violence

Taliban campaign targets girls' schools
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml;jsessionid=H3VZTKCKGU43BQFIQMGSFFOAVCBQWIV0?xml=/news/2007/02/04/wpak04.xml

Atlantic troops relieve battle-scarred Ontario regiment in Afghanistan
http://www.recorder.ca/cp/National/070204/n020455A.html

Increasing number of soldiers in need of help for traumatic stress disorder
http://www.recorder.ca/cp/National/070204/n020421A.html


ECONOMIC AFFAIRS
Ships of the air
New generation of dirigibles can revolutionize cargo industry
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868576p-4475412c.html


FOREIGN AFFAIRS
Fight against Iran too familiar
http://www.torontosun.com/News/Columnists/Margolis_Eric/2007/02/04/3522931.html

'Are the Children to Receive the Arms Race from Us as a Necessary Inheritance?'
http://www.commondreams.org/views07/0203-20.htm

EU unleashes a paper tiger

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China_Business/IB03Cb06.html        

Top secret army cell breaks terrorists
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml;jsessionid=H3VZTKCKGU43BQFIQMGSFFOAVCBQWIV0?xml=/news/2007/02/04/nspooks04.xml


POLITICS IN THE PROVINCES
‘Green’ attack
http://www.edmontonsun.com/Business/Columnists/Waugh_Neil/2007/02/04/3522936.html

McGuinty says premiers will try to ease restrictions on Canadians
http://www.recorder.ca/cp/National/070204/n020417A.html

Tory hopes byelection voters send Libs a message
http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070204/ontario_election_070204/20070204?hub=Canada

Green Party would get 10% of Ontario vote: Poll
http://www.torontosun.com/News/Canada/2007/02/04/3523063-sun.html


POLITICS
Words just get in the way
Can the love affair between the Tories and New Democrats overcome their differences on Kyoto?
http://www.macleans.ca/topstories/national/article.jsp?article=2007_2_1_1170352639

Dion not always hot on global warming, says former minister Anderson
http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/capress/070204/national/dion_anderson_kyoto


PROGRAMMES
Day not looking to cut prison guards levels
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070204.wprisonguards0204/BNStory/National/home

Sinking the navy
Flawed defence plan ignores critical needs
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868574p-4475406c.html

The rush to judgment on income trusts
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868572p-4475386c.html

Controlled access
http://www.ottawasun.com/News/Columnists/Weston_Greg/2007/02/04/3522657.html


PRESSURE POINTS
Why Canadians are right on Kyoto accord
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/177726

Bird flu kills turkeys in Britain
http://www.thestar.com/News/article/178086

Expect more bird flu outbreaks, UN chief warns
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070204.wbird-flu0204/BNStory/International/home

Canadian climate, size no longer excuses for not going green: experts
http://www.recorder.ca/cp/National/070204/n020423A.html


OPINION AND INFORMATION
A matter of prejudice
Quebec shouldn't accommodate.
Quebec should acculturate
http://www.canadafreepress.com/2007/wajsman020407.htm

Humiliation in the name of public safety
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868573p-4475400c.html

Concept of federal sharing is fatally flawed
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868571p-4475356c.html

The view from Guantanamo Bay
http://www.thestar.com/News/article/178082

Plenty of support for bilingualism: poll
http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2007/02/04/bilingualism-poll.html

Create an independent environmental officer
http://www.torontosun.com/News/Columnists/Copps_Sheila/2007/02/04/3522924.html

I know, it's terrible. But with things getting so stupid on Parliament Hill, how can anyone help it?
http://www.torontosun.com/News/Columnists/Goldstein_Lorrie/2007/02/04/3522923.html

New book argues Canada's freeloading and anti-Americanism threatens our future
http://www.torontosun.com/News/Columnists/Worthington_Peter/2007/02/04/3522927.html


INFOS

Les blessures subies sur le champ de bataille ne sont pas toutes visibles
http://info.branchez-vous.com/Nationales/070204/N020442U.html

Dion n'a pas toujours été un grand partisan de la question environnementale
http://mesnouvelles.branchez-vous.com/Nationales/070204/N020452U.html

Bilinguisme
L'idée fait son chemin
http://www.radio-canada.ca/actualite/desautels/2007/02/02/001-bilinguisme-sondage.asp

Stockwell Day nie que 300 postes de gardiens de prison seront supprimés
http://www.cyberpresse.ca/article/20070204/CPACTUALITES/70204018/1025/FRONTPAGE

Dion annonce les principaux points de son programme
http://www.cyberpresse.ca/apps/pbcs.dll/section?Category=CPACTUALITES

Un Imam estime que le «code de vie» d'Hérouxville est un «code de répression»
http://www.cyberpresse.ca/article/20070204/CPACTUALITES/70204014/6402/CPACTUALITES

CODE DE CONDUITE DE HÉROUXVILLE
Duceppe critique la position de Charest
http://www.cyberpresse.ca/article/20070202/CPACTUALITES/702020654/6402/CPACTUALITES

We can't take this affront sitting down
'You guys are being feminized, and you don't even know it.'
http://calgarysun.canoe.ca/NewsStand/News/Columnists/Byfield_Ted/2007/02/04/3523156-sun.html

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        Link Byfield, Senator-elect from Alberta states " It isn't why we confederated " as he continues his suggestion of a "peoples parliament" he
        initiated in What are the important questions for Canada? http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3856983p-4462560c.html last week

        Why ever did we I wonder?

                  Joe
_____________________________________
Concept of federal sharing is fatally flawed
http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/westview/story/3868571p-4475356c.html
Sun Feb 4 2007

Link Byfield

READERS were asked last week what question we should put to a national online citizens assembly we're organizing -- a "people's parliament."

The prospect of calling into existence a special national Internet assembly has created real excitement.

Picture it. The whole country could watch good solid Canadian citizens speaking and voting freely, uncensored by national parties and unfiltered by national media.

We could see first-hand the honest beliefs of ordinary citizens in the Atlantic region, Quebec, southern Ontario, northern Ontario, the Prairies, the Pacific. In fact, we could watch on-screen the reaction in each region as the assembly tackles real issues with real information.

Technology has made it possible to create a genuinely national political assembly without politicians. The significance of this is immense.

Unlike the House of Commons, where debate typically consists of a lonely MP droning party platitudes to an almost empty chamber, this people's parliament could get strong participation and media coverage.

For one thing, it would be brand new. For another, the topic would matter to everyone, and the outcome, though totally unpredictable, could be very influential.

So what exactly should this grand national jury of randomly invited citizens be asked to consider? On the one hand, it must be down-to-earth. On the other it must be important.

Almost all replies you sent in last week bespoke a dual desire -- that Canadians take more responsibility for themselves, and get a stronger democratic grip on governments. This was expressed in four ways.

1. Governing should be more localized; Ottawa is beyond control.

2. Roles and responsibilities should be the same for all provinces; no more special deals for Quebec.

3. Voter power should be increased, cabinet and judicial power reduced.

4. Canada needs a new constitution.

The first three of these easily fit together. The fourth I'm not sure of.

Here is a suggestion. One question that connects all these concerns -- even possibly the fourth -- would be to challenge federal "sharing" between regions.

Most of what we've heard to justify this inter-regional "sharing" by Ottawa is nonsense. It isn't why we confederated -- it started in the 1950s. It weakens rather than strengthens us politically, economically and morally. It fosters big governments and poisonous attitudes. And the frequent warnings of numerous economic organizations against continuing it have been ignored by Parliament and legislatures.

This subject in fact terrifies politicians, because it threatens to divide the country, along with their own parties. But it goes to the heart of what Canada has become. Maybe the risk of honest division would be better than holding everyone back with a comfortable but fatally flawed unity.

And who knows -- unbound by electoral ambitions, ordinary Canadians might actually agree on new federal principles good for all regions.

A people's parliament of citizens is more likely to trigger genuine debate and reform than the Parliament we've got in Ottawa.

What we're contemplating here could do more for freedom and democracy than anything we've seen in our lifetime.

But the early bird gets the worm. If we don't do this, and do it now, count on the other side -- those who believe in more government control and less democracy -- to seize the initiative and continue to steer the national agenda.

It's time to act. Keep sending me your thoughts. I read them all.

Link Byfield is an Alberta senator-elect and chairman of the Citizens Centre, which promotes the principles of personal freedom and responsible government.

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