Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Daily Digest September 26, 2007



ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - The perils of throwing stones

HALIFAX NEWS - Harper's salvo at U.S. a political move View comments

HALIFAX CHRONICLE HERALD - Count China in big leagues

MONTREAL GAZETTE - Vaccine program the right move


TORONTO STAR - PM's lip service on climate threat

TORONTO SUN - Put brakes on senile drivers

HAMILTON SPECTATOR - Get the bugs out of pesticide law

K-W RECORD - The murky spy world

SUDBURY STAR - Liberals have no grit; McGuinty keeps pretending occupation at Caledonia is not happening

        Fund one school system with public dollars

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS - He really means it

CALGARY HERALD - Hold off that panic button

         Outside fighters join Taliban

EDMONTON JOURNAL - Prompt action a good first step

VANCOUVER SUN - Women can save their lives by knowing about the whispering disease

VANCOUVER PROVINCE - The debate over pay equity is too important to be left to ideologues

VICTORIA TIMES-COLONIST - PM's green stance an embarrassment
Harper's vague promises giving fuel to opposition's call for action on Kyoto


Canadian vote left stain on country's reputation

Canadian troops unveil new weapon against IEDs

Villagers blame Canadians for Afghan killings

Afghan ambassador denies NDP claims on speech

165 Taliban fighters killed in Afghanistan

Van Doos face first tour if Afghan mission extended

U.S. Congress investigation finds Canadian border a danger

U.S. Homeland security chief says personal information needed on travellers

Tighter border rules passport to economic woes

Harper takes shot at Bush administration
Focus on nationalism hurts economic ties: PM

Remove internal trade barriers, Stelmach says

Researcher creates concrete with pine beetle wood

Soaring loonie aside, consumers still see double with dual U.S., Cda pricing

Lawsuit alleges automakers conspired to boost Canadian prices

Relations thaw after flag `stunt'

Canada files WTO complaint over European trade restrictions on seal products

Myanmar launches violent crackdown

Six tips from an expert to help temper the temper

Automakers sued over car price disparity 48 min. ago


Alberta's chronic overruns

all 98 news articles »

Lesson for Ontario

Leaders should tackle all issues

A mid-campaign stink bomb

The case against first-past-the-post

Leaders take eyes off economy

How MMP could sneak to victory

Tory unbuttons, out on the stump

Divisive schools issue splits Tories
Conservative leader John Tory's faith-based school funding proposal may not have been the right strategy to win him a breakthrough seat in Ottawa

Fairness stands time's test

Harper snubs annual press gallery dinner, no reason given for no-show

Dion keep door open to supporting the Tory government's throne speech

Liberals keeping powder dry, but preparing for electoral battle

Duceppe says Bloc in election mode ahead of throne speech

New Democrats criticize federal government over plans to militarize the North

Dion fuels election talk with throne speech conditions

Vote would return minority, PM predicts
But critics say Harper's comments show he may be warm to the prospect of a fall election

Canada should cease combat as NATO test, Liberals say
Dion says troops must withdraw in 2009 even if no other country will take over

Dion's a failure as Grit leader

Duceppe is making demands Harper could never accept
It comes down to the Liberals whether or not we have fall election

Tories hint that promise of 125,000 new child-care spots may not be realistic

Canadian television in peril

PM wants hard caps scrapped in next green deal
'Intensity targets' touted as alternative to key Kyoto tenet


Exports main cause of greenhouse gas growth, says study

Efforts to protect land in North from development failing: report

Forgetting the male victims of child abuse

Getting rich by going green
Scott Brison, National Post

Rich aren't the problem

Go, Gore, go
Former VP could use his possible Nobel Prize as launching pad for his new bid to become president

Who will replace the baby boomers in the workplace?


Le NPD dénonce les intentions militaires des conservateurs dans l'Arctique

Boycottage des produits du phoque: le Canada se plaint à l'OMC

Réunis à Ottawa, les députés bloquistes se préparent à des élections

Mobilisation onusienne

Stéphane Dion garde le cap

Les soldats canadiens ont une nouvelle arme contre les mines

Harper ratera le dîner annuel de la Tribune de la presse

Bernier veut convaincre d'autres pays de s'investir davantage

"Je ne comprend pas"
        There are more than a few things I do not understand. The following article appeared in a French language paper.  How come it has not been in any English
         language paper to my knowledge.
        As well how does the headline in French translate into English?  It certainly makes no sense to me the way Google (and Babel as well) did it.
The PLC requires of the DGE to prevent them from voting on the speech from the throne

Ottawa -- The liberal opposition in Ottawa invites Élections Canada to press the step in its investigation into the doubtful electoral expenditure of the preserving Party in order to obtain a verdict on its intrigues before the next poll. If the Director general of the election applies the sanctions envisaged to the electoral law as the liberals wish it, they are 17 deputies of the government who could see themselves prohibited to sit and to vote with the House of Commons.


Real Gagne
Subject: For The Digest


Regarding Jacob Rempel's comments about Section 36 of the 1982 Constitution as the authority for federal government intrusion into areas of provincial jurisdiction, my reading of that section, and particularly its opening clause in subsection (1), is that it does not confer on the federal government the authority to pursue such intrusion, as Rempel claims.  Indeed, Section 36's opening clause specifically guarantees the rights of provincial governments accorded them under sections 92 and 92(A) of the Constitution.


Rosalie Piccioni

Subject: Re: Daily Digest September 16, 2007

Joe:       Re:  Iraq and Afghanistan two sides of same coin
    Perhaps Haroon Siddiqui knows something I don't, even with the bombings worldwide.  There is no question that something is happening throughout the world, and I have no doubt that Canada is not immune;  actually, I think there's been enough evidence of this in incidences even covered by the media. 
    Hopefully, something concrete will be done about those involved in the incidences, as is being done in Afghanistan.  Not fear, but intelligent examination of the situation, which as I stated is worldwide, and competent handling of same is what is needed. 
    I do not profess to be an expert, but have gleaned enough facts to come to conclusions that belie some of the comments trying to negate reality.  And my comments do not come from political bent.  The facts speak for themselves.
   I appreciate  NATIONAL POST's - The Taliban grow desperate

        and       The right call at the UN
which reflect in-depth examinations and factual reports on two items in the media, including the DD. 

Ron Thornton

Hi Joe:

Like most of us, from time to time a lack of time causes me to quickly pan the Digest rather than properly digest its contents.  Today, I had a bit more time but found nothing of particular interest, at least enough to cause me to write, until the end.  You do not like bananas, rice, apple sauce, and toast?  My only argument, at least for a short-term on such a restricted diet, is to the amount I would be allowed to consume. 
A guy can get pretty full on bananas, and apple sauce on toast might have something to lend itself to the palate.  Now, rice without butter...that could be tough to swallow.

So, while Ontario fights for an election, while the topic of gay rights was the subject of another article, and how our old friend Stephane Dion struggles to achieve anything macho men could view as tolerable, it was your own story that proved the most interesting and worthy of comment.

Some milk to go with those bananas should also be considered by your dietitian.  A little butter for the toast is also something for them to ponder.  I'm not a doctor, but I do have taste buds.

Good luck to you, Joe.


Rosalie Piccioni

Joe -           Re:  From: Mary-Sue Haliburton
                            Subject: "duty to refuse an illegal order" Re: DD 16/9/07
Ms  Haliburton says, after many quotes, " Perhaps that should be, "May God save the people of America from their own myths" (e.g. beliefs of both supremacy and inerrancy). and that is better than not believing anything.  But we can choose to have a reality that refuses to take a good look at what is happening in the world -  playing tapes of what was said by the "who's whos" of decades  ago, and listening to people who align themselves with the myth that we can afford to put on blinders and ignore what is going on in the world., But by taking a brave, genuine, open-eyed interest in the over-all world picture, we can examine the body of malignancy that is disrupting any harmony in it, shaking the world with its hatred and destruction.  There is plenty enough of that to make a call for admitting the leaders of our nations are doing their best.  If Steven Harper and his like are taking steps for some semblance of peace, that is to be applauded, not criticized.  Eruption will happen soon enough, but there is no point in hurrying it up by ignoring the signs or by taking a laissez-faire attitude.  Reading up on some history on the root of WW11 and the peoples of the Middle East is a good start in learning about the formidable foe causing the upheavals at this time.  
 .... "and may He save us Canadians from said myths as well"  -- since thanks to Harper and his ilk, those myths are becoming ours.  I for one am grateful for those "myths," which in reality are fact.  And time - in our time - will tell the tale. 

"Canadians used to be more realistic."   Thank God that we have leaders who still are. 

Rubie Britton
Subject: Why I Won't Wear Janice Kennedy

Troops Out Now!
When Canadians are asked about the traditional role of the Canadian military, they speak with pride about Canadian participation in United Nations peacekeeping missions. But many would be shocked to learn that Canada has abandoned its traditional role as a peacekeeper, in favour of supporting U.S.-led military intervention. While public pressure forced the government to say "no" to participation in the war in Iraq and Ballistic Missile Defence, Canada is quietly integrating its military policies with the U.S.

 1992-93, participation in UN missions accounted for more than nine out of every 10 dollars spent on international operations. By 2004-05, spending on UN missions accounted for only 30 cents of every 10 dollars of Canada's spending on military missions abroad. Meanwhile, people in Canada are seeing their human rights compromised by the incursion of U.S.-style "Homeland Security" measures, including harmonized refugee and immigration policies and anti-terrorism legislation that denies people the right to a fair trial.

According to Mark Federman, a specialist in public messaging former chief strategist at Toronto's McLuhan Program in Culture and Technology, speaking to the Ottawa Citizen on June 23, 2007, "Support our Troops" is "an American-influenced phrase that drags along a blind patriotism and blind patriotism is always about support of the current administration." Federman says that, "even though the phrase is easily minimized and made palatable, it is intended to condition people to support the government's policies. It is clearly a political statement."
Why I won't wear red

We all support our troops, for heaven's sake, not to mention their suffering families. But your ribbon or Friday red is actually saying: Yes, we should be in Afghanistan
Janice Kennedy, The Ottawa Citizen
Sunday, September 02, 2007

What a sad difference a year makes. Last fall I had the privilege of spending time with several women in Petawawa, military wives who had soldier husbands serving in Afghanistan. Every one of them displayed a cheerful, if wry, sense of humour, despite the stress they lived under day and night. And every one of them shone with a kind of inner strength and courage most of us will never have to know.
They impressed the heck out of me. Still do, when I think of them. Because of women like them -- and the obviously good men overseas they worried about constantly and spoke of so lovingly -- I was happy to make the simple, undemanding gesture of wearing red for a few Fridays. But I felt compelled to stop some time ago.
What used to be an uncomplicated show of pure human support has become political, and the politics is distinctly ugly. Under Canada's New Government, we're witnessing the rise of Canada's New Militarism.
And it's everywhere. It's in the sprouting right across the land of those American-style yellow ribbon decals, second-hand imagery with a sad little Canadian flag to make it appear not second-hand.
It's in ideas like the proposed "Highway of Heroes," a euphemistic designation to tack on to the stretch of roadway over which the coffins of dead young soldiers are driven in the repatriation process. Calling them heroes, rather than victims of tragically misguided policy, helps us justify the waste of their young lives.

*                          *                          *

It's become nasty out there, and stifling. Try to debate issues that used to be open for discussion in this country -- issues that go the heart of our collective sense of morality -- and suddenly you're charged with lacking patriotism, or backbone, or some other fragment of cheap and borrowed jingoism.
The new rules of discourse are wartime rules (loose lips might sink ships, after all), and the only admissible consideration of war is the one that all but chokes itself on its own meaningless clichés. Wallowing in cheap sentiment -- as long as it's not our sons who have been blown to bits -- we say things like, "they're putting their lives on the line for us." Or "they're fighting for Canada." Or, in the words of Ottawa councillor McRae (though they could be anybody's), our uniformed men and women are "willing to sacrifice their lives to make sure this country stays as great as it is." (Could someone please explain to me how any of the debacle in Afghanistan is a fight for Canada, Canadians or our national greatness? Please?)
These days, on the combative watch of Canada's New Government, real value is measured in brass buttons, bombs and casualty lists.
And no matter what anyone says, it is deeply political. Every last poisonous bit of it.
As ever,

Robert Ede
Subject: Fwd: Despotic Lea
ders - Nat Post

Joe -- it was a great piece
I sent this back to him
no resp yet

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Robert Ede
Subject: Despotic Leaders - Nat Post
Cc: nationalpost < >, "monarchist, the" < >

Hi Phil,
You learn something every day!!
" now-defunct parliamentary convention that served to draw the line between executive and legislative powers. When the Prime Minister appointed an MP to Cabinet, he had to resign and run in a by-election, as did the PM himself. Constituents voted to sanction the granting of executive power to the MP."
Fantastic piece! Congrats on getting such a comprehensive article presented.
I had hoped to make a few quick points, but (as always) this seems impossible.
I am hoping to find an ally not create a foe.
Pls find the time to scan this and check the links/proofs
I think we're on the same path, but striving for slightly similar objectives
Bottom line
The 'de facto' government  (that we're all familiar with watching perform as it wishes and not was we might wish) is NOT following the as-written 'de jure' Constitution.
What we have de facto is a self-made (party machine made ) hybrid that has not of the intended safeguards and is operating with out principles, without consistent policies, disregarding Canada's similar in principle traditions, in short botching everything for everybody (debt, enviromnent, fishery, forests, courts-gone-wild, morality gone wild etc etc) EXCEPT themselves and their party-buddies.
Robert Ede
25 Dersingham Cres
Thornhill ON
Couple of points re: Despotic Leaders, Comment FP11, NatPost Sep25/07
The line between the Executive and the Legislative is one we desperately need to re-draw.
If we do not re-establish (and make it widely well-known & understood) the difference in role, hierarchy & authority between constitutionally established offices that are part of the Executive and which other offices (largely created by convention and 'new' traditions) are part of the Legislative power we will continue to be NOT following our as-written BNA/Constitution and will perpetuate the 'despot-creating' mess you describe AND might as well stop bothering to pretend we have a written constitution.
I was unaware of the now-defunct convention that required the PM & MP's to re-run in a by-election to obtain popular endorsement of their move to the PRIVY COUNCIL ie not Cabinet.
This makes perfect sense since the 'elevated one' was now donning a second hat (becoming part of the S.11 Executive as an advisor to the Governor General) AND swearing a new oath, thereby accepting a primary allegiance to a new 'lord', one much higher in authority than the local consituency ( i.e. to the 'Governor' whose views {along with the views of his Executive Council & Legislative Council} were not always aligned with the views of the assembly in the ol'Responsible Gov't days)
That we know longer follow the "ascendency by-election" convention is no surprise ...especially once Wm L Mackenzie King officially merged (I say usurped, as step one of his 2-part revenge on Lord Byng's refusal of King's 'advice') the powers of the Privy Council by simultaneosly appointing his Principal Secretary (today's Sect'y to Cabinet) as Clerk of the Privy Council via Order In Council PC1940-1121

Once King controlled the Privy Council (stripping the GG of independent advice) and officially took over the Privy Council's committees (Treasury Bd et al) the Cabinet became the Privy Council and the Legislative power had virtually taken over(again usurped) the Executive. Step two was King's successful campaign to have 'a Canadian' (read toady, that I appointed) as GG.
With a toady as GG and that toady with no independent advisors the GG's s55 powers to withhold Assent or Reserve Bills, as an individual (carefully read s.12, particularly vis a vis s.13 - NB s65-66 for Lt Gov's) Wm LM King (and his Rt Hon successors) had indeed become King/Queen/Monarch of Canada - as long as he could stay in power in the H of C.
THIS WAS THE OPPOSITE OF THE INTENTION (pls excuse my lack of keyboard emphasizing skills).
This brings me to my next point on your wonderful  piece on the plebiscite to pretend to be offering Ontarians a chance to choose mixed-up party-first & party-only voting .
The 1265 Mother of Parliaments & the "splendid old-growth branches" of Parliamentary Conventions.
Notwithstanding the parliamentary history & experiences of Britain & the UK, In my view, Canada was formed as a "new thing" ie with a Constitution similar in principle but in no way exactly the same. 1) GB has no Governor General as proxy for the Monarch-in-Council. 2) GB is?was? a unitary state, not a federation - no provinces, dist of powers. 3)GB had no Quebec Act 1774 to deal with (RomCath church + french language)
Canada was formed in light of the French experiments, the 13 Colonies experience (both their Constitutions weak centre {I still get a chuckle out of Article XI} replaced by strong centre) and the politico-economic-mercantile-military realities for GB of post 1837-8 Rebellion, post 1840 Act of Union BNAmerica & the post civil war USA.
In my opinion, Canada's 5 level governance system was expressly created to prevent a loss of the colonies from the British orb (if possible at little cost and/or bother) + while under GB control to maintain a high degree influence/leadership/control (s. 56 -the 2yr Disallowance power) over any incremental steps a local Canadian demagogue (or despot) might initiate to break with the plan that GB had for Canada's evolution into a 'better version' of the USA .

Sovereignty - vested in the Monarch
holds veto over everything
Governor General
-holds all Monarch powers, on pleasure, currently also Commander in Chief on pleasure
-holds veto over everything from Legislatures/Assemblies
-can decide as an individual, with or without advice, and/or advice and consent of Privy Council
Privy Council
independent advisors to GG
appointed by GG
no need for election
land ownership & net worth qualifications
source of PM's power
People - not mentioned in Constitution 1867
No property rights in Canada, Crown owns everything (grants limited, transferable and will-able "interests" called fee simple for land holdings)
 Another key difference (briefly noted above) is the express differentiation between the s.12 'as an individual' decisional/executive powers of the GG and the s.13 'by and with advice' of Privy Council role of the same person as GG-in-Council.
The Monarch of Britain had been constrained to an "in-Council" role by the "gradual usurp(ations of) the Crown's executive power" which limited the King/Queen to the "to be consulted, to encourage & to warn" position that today's QEII admits to holding.
The s.13 GG-in-council role is akin to the Monarch's position vis a vis Her/His GB Privy Council but the decisional/executive powers granted to the s.12 GG as an individual  are far greater than the Monarch (albeit with the Briish Monarch-in-council above it)
If a 1867 GG withheld Assent to a bill ... it was finished (try again if you want, but no appeal mechanism to the GG decision)
If a 1867 GG reserved a bill ... good luck persuading the GB Privy Council
If a 1867 Lt Gov withheld or reserved a provincial bill ... go lobby the Dominion Privy Council
If a 1867 GG-in-Council disallowed or did not signify a reserved provincial bill w/in 1 yr (s.90) ...  it was finished ... try again if you wish, but no appeal, as above)
NB The vitally-significant, but never-tarried-upon aspect of the 1982 changes is that " by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same ", the Privy Council released the Monarch from their "advice & consent" strictures but ONLY AS FAR AS CANADA is concerned.
The phrase "No Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom passed after the Constitution Act, 1982 comes into force shall extend to Canada as part of its law." and the whole (bogus & faulty) patriation process (with its condition-ridden Charter and impossible Amending formula) couldn't/didn't/dared not remove the Monarch from the top of the power totem, but it surely did remove the GB Privy Council from the mix (QEII is probably so used to the process She would not vary from her normal procedures .... but in all things Canadian, She need not do so.
Case in point - to bring to common knowledge a) this 1982 bit, b) the Monarch's disallowance powers & c) reverse a ludicrous piece of legislation, I'd hoped to get a petition going to ask HRH to disallow the Civil Marriages Act prior to the 2yr deadline of July20,2007 - but no one jumped on the bandwagon)
Sorry for the wordiness and jumping around
Bottom line
The 'de facto' government  (that we're all familiar with watching perform as it wishes and not was we might wish) is NOT following the as-written 'de jure' Constitution.
What we have de facto is a self-made (party machine made ) hybrid that has none of the intended safeguards and is operating with out principles, without consistent policies, disregarding Canada's similar in principle traditions, in short botching everything for everybody (debt, enviromnent, fishery, forests, courts-gone-wild, morality gone wild etc etc) EXCEPT themselves and their party-buddies.
another time perhaps
Party control & the Canada Elections Act & Election Finances Acts
True purpose of Senate as reprentatives of the 'propertied class' draw equally from all the 3/4 Divisions/Regions (why else the complicated property & net-woth provisions for s.23 qualification and s.31 disqualification AND a separate Oath)