Thursday, March 01, 2007

Daily Digest March 1, 2007

Joe Hueglin wrote:


ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - Harper should hang his head

CHARLOTTETOWN GUARDIAN - Canadians and the ATM fees they pay Post a comment  print this article
Our MPs are right to examine the matter of ATM fees charged by the banks.

HALIFAX HERALD - Dion drops ball

MONTREAL GAZETTE - A sinister synergy threatens civility

MONTREAL GAZETTE - All governments overspend

OTTAWA CITIZEN - Securing some principles

OTTAWA CITIZEN - Give a penny, take a penny

TORONTO STAR - Victims of crime victimized again

TORONTO STAR - Danger lurks in Internet's recesses

TORONTO SUN - Greening up planet, one bag at a time

K-W RECORD - Hijabs on the soccer pitch

SUDBURY STAR - When words collide; Ottawa changing argument to justify new approach in Afghanistan =

SUDBURY STAR - Restore sense of certainty to funding =

SASKATOON STARPHOENIX - Share of GST going to cities sensible notion

REGINA LEADER-POST - Doing the Wrong Thing
A $275,000 payment to a fired civil servant sends a worrisome signal to public employees and raises serious questions about the provincial government's managerial competence.

REGINA LEADER-POST - 'Destruction of the farmers' monopoly'

Pinpointing the reason for recent hike a bit of a guessing game

LETHBRIDGE HERALD - Oilsands development proceeding too quickly?

VANCOUVER SUN - Pension plan board must use its new power of derivatives cautiously

VICTORIA TIMES-COLONIST - Let Asmahan play soccer


VIDEO AND RADIO Seen & heard Afghan war
Globe reporters describe what it's really like

Talk to the Taliban, experts urge

Afghan opium 'hits record output'

U.S. ambassador says land passport rule coming sooner rather than later

U.S. concerned about Canadian ecstasy production

Don't let U.S. drug policy into Canada

Canada sees possible nuclear renaissance

Canadian current account surplus drops sharply

Canada's incredible shrinking profile a sign of the times
Corporate sector isn't being 'hollowed out,' but sad fact is the world couldn't care less

Canada's income gap growing, study says

Japan PM: WWII military sex slaves not coerced

Canada provides $48M for Darfur peacekeeping

C. difficile worries officials

Privacy guardians urge Ottawa to protect citizens

Valid Quebec election in question

Parti Quebecois struggles to light a fire under its sovereigntist base
PQ, Bloc portray Charest as bogeyman running campaign of fear

Conservatives widen lead on Liberals, Greens surge: poll

Canada Conservatives extend lead in new poll

Liberal, Conservative finagling insults voters

Dion shrugs off poll showing Grits nine points back

Protecting security and rights with equal vigour STEPHANE DION,

 Opposition MPs mull carbon-tax proposal

Dion's Top 10 Kyoto excuses

Harper called hypocrite over usage of jets
PM once accused Liberals of overusing Challengers, but used one to fly to hockey game

 Liberal MP unrepentant for defying Dion on anti-terror vote

PM walks softly but hopes to carry big stick in election

PM, Dion dumb down public discourse

Leadership losers draw Liberal salaries

Senators tussle over committee changes

Senate shuts down little-known emergency fund

Report on IRB draws fire

Tories cleaning up Liberals' refugee board 'mess': Harper

Liberals howl foul over Harper's "character assassination" of Grit MPs

Canada likely to kill contentious "anti-scab" bill

In Quebec, fair share means 60%

Liberal MP to be punished after defying Dion on vote
Colleagues defend Wappel's decision to vote freely on security issue

Warming up Harper

Holland's trip west spunky move

Canada readies no-fly list for summer

Safety cuts risk air disaster: Judge

Part 1: Young, urban and green

Part 2: Buying your way out

Part 3: Going green

Part 4: Swiping carbon credit

Part 5 Have we no shame?

Afghan refugees used as political football

A 'Yes' vote means no cash

Just go already

Fear and ignorance: A rural revolt
Immigrants are not the main target of small-town outcasts. Rather, it is the foreign land the big cities have become

Plenty of oil but no gas

Less than secure


Les conjoints de même sexe remportent une victoire partielle en Cour suprême

Les Inuit accusent la pollution américaine de violation des droits de l’Homme

Le Commissaire aux langues officielles aura la Défense nationale à l'oeil

Les conservateurs s'éloigneraient des libéraux, selon un sondage

Mahar Arar demeure sur la liste de surveillance des Etats-Unis

Québec veut la moitié des retombées économiques

Les libéraux exigent des excuses de Poilièvre

Deux députés condamnent la réglementation sur l'amiante

Alphabétisation: une coalition demande l’annulation des coupes

Après les juges, les commissaires à l'immigration

Stéphane Dion paie ses dettes

Ottawa investit 150 millions

Place à la politique


C. difficile "a strain of the bacteria that contributed to the deaths of some 2,000 people in Quebec."

        2,000 dead! Ask any ten people at random about the danger of C. difficile and how many will know about it let alone the danger or what to do.
        SARS was a crisis.  C. difficile? Guess not . . . instead let's focus on the coming eventual maybe sometime pandemic, right?
        Having gone with Aase to hospitals recently, while standing just beyond the NO GO ZONE for those habituated to the use of tobacco, I watched
        those going in nand out.  Walking right in and right out past bottles of Put this on your hands and kill Germs stuff.  It oughta be right in side the
        door with a volunteer saying "NO IN and NO OUT without you use it!"
        Leastwise that's what crossed my mind.  "As with any infectious disease, frequent hand washing is one of the best defenses." is on the site
        dealing with what's killed 2 000 in Quebec and is now into other provinces. is the government
        site and this the google.
        How much did you know about this killer before to-day?
                 Lemme know, eh?

Ian Berg

The 1993 general election reduced the Progressive Conservative Party
from majority government to two seats because it lost a great deal of
support from Westerners and Quebeckers.  It never recovered.  Neither
blaming the Reform Party nor selecting former Prime Minister Joe Clark
as leader could bring it back. Of course the present-day Conservative
Party does not want to be split and open the door to another 13 years
of Liberal Party rule.  Canada is back to a two-party plus system
after a decade of pizza parliaments.

Ian Berg
Calgary AB

Mahmood Elahi
To: <>
Cc: "Joe Hueglin" <>
Subject: We the people must change first before the politicians

The Editor
The Ottawa Citizen
We the people must change first before the politicians
Re "Listen to the people," by David Suzuki (Feb. 28).
Dr. David Suzuki is urging the politicians to listen to the people. He calls politicians as "bitter, infighting, partisan jerks" while the citizens are "willing to take personal steps to protect the environment."
But if this is so, it is not evident from the daily life. Most people talk about protecting the environment, but they hardly act on it. We talk about the need for reducing gas consumption. But look around, you will see the roads and highways are packed with gas gazzling SUVs, not hybrids. Most people don't take public transport and traffic congestion is as bad as ever and getting worse.
And the lavish lifestyles of the affluent middle classes belie their commitment to environment. U.S. Vice President Al Gore is a committed environmentalist and yet as reported by the Citizen on the same day that he lives in a palatial mansion in Nashville, Tennessee. According to Tennessee Centre for Policy Research Mr. Gore is not doing enough to reduce his own consumption of electricity. Utility records show the Gore family paid an average monthly electric bill of about $1,200 U.S. last year for the 10,000-square-foot home.
Dr Suzuki calls for leadership from the government, but in a democracy like Canada, government reflects the people and unless we change, the government can do only so much.

Rosalie Piccioni

Joe -  I don't usually comment on Stratos' comment (too complicated for me).  I had to comment on this one though:
MONTREAL GAZETTE - Ridiculous ruling on a head scarf

You know, just for ONCE I'd like to see a bona fide QC provincial or federal leader stand up and say something like: "No girl, no woman, should ever be afraid to wear the dress of her culture in Quebec (Canada). And should she BE afraid, then it's the government's duty to ensure that she'll have no reason to". .....  (STRATOS)
    I'm beginning to wonder what Canada represents.  Who are we?  We are a mixture of peoples from all over the world in a society that has established laws and rules, some written and some simply understood, by which we live a democratic life.  For a while, there was hardly a day that passed without my hearing someone new to Canada yelling about some rule that was so basic I wouldn't think of opposing it;  because of those rules we live in a fairly stable society, so why oppose them.
    If I went to another country, I would not consider opposing the laws and rules established there, simply because I would understand that I am the newbie on the block and not those who are governing or being governed.  Considering the news, every day we hear about battles going on in the countries of the world - and many of them are the countries that the newbies in our country have left behind to come here.  There are few countries who have anything that comes near Canada for a peaceful existence.   So, I can't understand why we should make laws now to accommodate those who have left the battlefields.  Nor can I understand where to do so by anyone would make them heroes.

    I wonder if we're not leaving ourselves open to disaster by being the lenient and conservative population that we are.  Our history is full of transactions that have cost us part of our country and kept us from becoming the independent and avant garde nation we could be.  When one of our leaders in government, sports, business does make suggestions of governance to maintain security, order, or progress, they are shot down.  And, at the same time, we also complain about the very countries that the people we now placate have left for the peaceful and more bountiful existence of Canada.

    Maybe this can be explained to me, as to why as someone who was born and raised here, who served in one of the armed forces in order to help in any way I could to keep peace wherever it was threatened, I should now consider the promotion of change for the good of new "citizens" a good thing........... I welcome newcomers; after all my ancestors were newcomers at one time.  Maybe they should have agitated for changes.
Mary-Sue Haliburton
Ottawa West - Nepean

The lid is popping off the 9/11 "cover" story:

BBC Reported Building 7 Had Collapsed -- 20 Minutes Before It Fell


Because this evidence of apparently pre-planned news and management of public perception really can't be explained away, Google had deleted the you-tube post. However, some alert people had already downloaded the file and are circulating and re-posting it. I notice in the video that initially the reporter's head was in front of Bldg 7 (possibly to hide it) which was still standing at that time, but she moved a bit too far to her right and the "fallen" building shows up in the background just behind her head. Of course at the time most viewers, especially most British ones, probably would not have known which building was being talked about and where it was in the urban landscape.

And then there's the fact that the Pentagon didn't fire its anti-aircraft weapons:
< >
 Only inside attackers or collaborators could have stood down those defences. This article explains how the clocks that were stopped by the explosion clinch the fact that it occurred before the aircraft finished its approach and did the famous diving turn:

It's too bad that the Harper government still believes the lame conspiracy theory put forward by Bush to "justify" his attack on another country, and even sadder to see that families of 911 victims in Canada still believe this and are trotted out to give an emotional defence of our country's version of the "Patriot" act. A spokeswoman was begging for the anti-terror "tools" to be kept. Which ones, I wonder? Arrest without warrant? Being buried in a gulag without trial? What those families of victims need is to see justice done (of which closure the cover-up has deprived them), and our national security needs would be better served by full investigation leading to finding and prosecuting the collaborators who participated in pulling off this huge crime in New York and Washington. Self-destructive policies based on belief in the cover-up could then be re-examined and egregious errors corrected. 

Mary-Sue Haliburton
Ottawa West - Nepean

Bill Longworth

Subject: High Gas Prices...Thank Goodness

Gas prices are shooting sky high again.  Thank goodness!  While filling my tank this morning at $1 per litre, the guy ahead of me said his monster held 140 litres.  "That's $140", I said, "My fill up is going to come in around $30."  These sky high prices may save the world.  The high prices may cause those who drive the big monsters to "put them down."  This is a common planet home to us all and those who drive the gas guzzlers are irresponsibly doing more than their share to destroy it for the rest.  It is dumb and unnecessary to drive those huge rigs.  Maybe the owners might start to feel a little guilty and the the gas guzzlers will go the way of fur coats.  That is happening of course, as many are dumping the monsters, and the more insecure who need them are able to pick them up for a song.  Let's hope the escalating prices will let these idiots see the folly of their ways.

Subject: Canadian Mayors One Cent Campaign

I see Finance Minister Flaherty is dumping on the one-cent campaign of Canadian Mayors saying his interest is in cutting taxes for all rather than shifting taxes to another level of government.  Lets look at Flaherty's argument.  Cutting taxes--Who does it help?  The rich who enjoy a tax saving and can afford to pay for those things that might be cut when government budgets are cut.  Who does it hurt?  The poor in two ways.  Because they pay little or no tax, they do not benefit from the tax cuts.  Because they cannot afford things like increasing post secondary education costs that escalate because of reduced government transfer payments, their children suffer by being blocked from higher level jobs requiring the education they can't afford.  In the end, the professional class of high level jobs will be filled by children of the rich.  This will create a "class structure" in the country allocating jobs based on the wealth of the family you're born into rather than on merit.  Is this the Conservative design for Canada?

Subject: Webstie

Hi Joe:
Oshawa City Council is attempting to change to the general vote for the election of Oshawa City Council.  This is self-serving for the council members in guaranteeing their election until death or resignation.  Oshawa had the general vote with devastating results until 1985 when my (Bill Longworth) group, "Ward System Now" mounted a five year campaign to win the ward system for Oshawa in a 21 day case that I personally presented to the OMB, the longest case of its kind up to that point.  I have mounted another campaign VOTES (VOte To Eliminate Self-serving politicians) whose purpose is 1) to fight to retain ward voting for Oshawa, and 2) to organize the defeat of self-serving politicians supporting the change.  The website has a daily entry having to do with the issue and may prove of some interest to your readers.  The following entry of 2 or 3 days ago is typical of our daily postings and might provide some entertaining reading.  Hopefully many of your interested readers will bookmark our site, log in regularly, and also pass on our address to people in their contact's list.  I find your daily news log very useful and informative Joe.  Keep up the good work!---Bill Longworth
Dear Canadian Mayors:
Eat yer hart out Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Victoria, Brandon, Winnipeg, Moncton, St. John, Yellowknife, Inuvik, Halifax, Barrie, Gravenhurst, Guelph, Hamilton, London, Kitchener, Kingston, Peterborough, St. Catherines, Sarnia, Thunder Bay, Stratford, Sudbury, Timmins, Windsor, Waterloo, Flin Flon, Charlottetown, Chicoutimi, Quebec City, Sherbrooke, Regina, Saskatoon, Whitehorse and my goodness, little South Algonquin, my favorite place, the location of my cottage.  All yous guys still have da ward system cause yous guys not near progressive as our guys
We soon gonna get somethem you not got…a general vote for de election of our local council.  We gonna have somethem that is rarer than spare change at Oshawa tax time.  But then we are bigger dan many of yous guys and so it makes sense that our council smarter too.
We so progressive, guess we de only guys to see the light.  Good thing we got dem council guys lookin after us.  We jus let dese guys go do what they think best for us.
We got Tweedle dee and Tweedle dumb.  We even got Tweedle dumber lookin after us.  Tweedle dee, he just throw out motion and Tweedle dumb and Tweedle dumber jump up and dance, “We support that!”  Sometime they jump up so fast dat their little pointy hats fall off.  Along with Councillor Joe, we call dem de gang a four.
Councillor Joe--he even a mind reader.  He  know which way he gonna vote even before he hear da motion.… He say, “I’m never gonna support motion from dat guy!”  Bet you other guys wish you had guy this smart on your council!  He know what he not support before he hear it.
Us guys in Oshawa, we glad to have set forward thunking leaders…imagine us in Oshawa treaden democratically where no one else dare to go.  I guess we set pattern for all yous other guy in Canada to follow our lead.
Oh!  I know dat dere is one guy, Longworth in town…a real disturber who wants to keep our election system dat all yous guys in Canada use and maybe he so busy debunking and debating our grate Oshawa leaders that maybe he don’t see the light.  Maybe he should start using his energy to defend our smart guy on city council.
So eat your heart out Canada, and hope someday that yous get de smart guy wid the smart idea like we got.
If you want dese guys, I know they be free after next election and maybe come to help ya den.
“Proud” from Oshawa

Bill Longworth,
Founder & Chair of VOTES (Vote to Eliminate Self Serving Politicians)
159 Spirea Court,
Oshawa, Ontario
905 579 3971