Thursday, October 11, 2007

Daily Digest October 11, 2007



ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - A case of sound decisions

CHARLOTTETOWN GUARDIAN - Engaging in a worthwhile initiative print this article
With midwifery services operating in most other provinces, P.E.I. should explore setting up such services here.

HALIFAX NEWS - If it's not one offshore accord, it's another

HALIFAX CHRONICLE HERALD - Rodney's big gamble

        East Coast fishermen: hands in their pockets

        Time to fix act FLAWS in Canada's Youth Criminal Justice Act have been criticized for years.

MONTREAL GAZETTE - Premier chooses posturing over courage

OTTAWA CITIZEN - The call of duty

         Watching McGuinty


TORONTO STAR - Ontario votes for bold agenda

        Keep pressure on Karzai

NATIONAL POST - A politics-free Kandahar




K-W RECORD - Well done Dalton, now do even better



SUDBURY STAR - A lot of work to do; Liberals must spend profusely to keep promises, but without hiking taxes

         Victim's kidnapping claim needs explanation
        Sept. 11 changed everything in the United States and, by extension, the rest of the world.
        Proof of that can be found in numerous places, including The U.S. Supreme Court which seems to be ignoring its duty to protect individuals from the     excesses of the state.

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS - The fog of war polls


SASKATOON STARPHOENIX - Voters seeking vision to keep building riches

REGINA LEADER-POST - Right, Privilege, Duty

CALGARY HERALD - Ottawa needs clear rules on foreign investors

         Albertans say save the land
        Province's public consultation yields overwhelming response


GRANDE PRAIRIE DAILY HERALD TRIBUNE - Fix our ailing health system
Nagging doctor shortage truly needs to be addressed


EDMONTON SUN - Canada needs medical miracle


PRINCE GEORGE CITIZEN - Harper's recipe for a majority






Mission to Kandahar: The Canadian mission in Afghanistan represents the largest combat campaign our military has waged since the Korean War. A new book explains how it came to be

U.S. demands passenger lists for sun flights

Coalition for Fair Lumber Imports Comments on Softwood Lumber Agreement Anniversary and Impact of Canada's Continued Violations =

No more water and trees; economy is all about oil and minerals now

Iraqis demand crackdown on private guards

State Dept. may phase out Blackwater

Afghanistan cracks down on private security

Children's cold drugs pulled in U.S.

Canadian to head effort to speed HIV vaccine

Supreme Court to rule on automatic sentencing as adult

UN agency concerned about Canada turning away refugees

Williams fumes at PM's deal with Nova Scotia

The story behind the Atlantic Accord VIDEO

Williams overwhelms opposition in return to power VIDEO:

Dear Ed Stelmach

Oilpatch needs returns to assume risks

Big Oil, Big Ottawa the enemy

all 583 news articles »

Tory admits leadership at risk after election loss

McGuinty must now tackle issues he sidestepped in his first mandate

Duceppe slams 'multiculturalism'

PM rejects discussions with Dion

PM reveals his greatest flaw
Timing of Atlantic deal shows a mean streak

Harper again stokes election fire
Ball in Liberals' court, Harper says as he ends revenue dispute with Nova Scotia premier

MP Bill Casey says new offshore deal won't win back trust of N.S. voters

Dion's popularity continues to slide in Quebec

PM's Afghan stand bad for NATO: Dion
Extension of Canada's combat role would weaken the alliance, Liberal leader warns

A warning for Ottawa in Ontario's campaign

Reform club loses stalwart with Hanger's exit

Tories' language record gets a failing grade
Elimination of Court Challenges Program singled out as government's worst violation

Federal government giving $691.9M to Via Rail over 5 years to improve train service

Mayors fear fed cash drying up as infrastructure deficit rises to $100 billion

GPS stays, judge tells terror suspect
Request for unrestricted freedom fails


Save our kids
A court case may block misuse of Gore's film in U.K. schools

Do trees spew 'contaminants'?

Ninety per cent cut in emissions urged to avert global meltdown

End the war on drugs

Spinning John Tory's troubles

War museum reaches compromise with vets

Oceans get a breather at NAFO

The Belgian waffle

Ontario can't afford more of the same from the Liberals

The limits of justice

'Rich getting richer' unproven claim

China syndrome
Beijing protects loathsome regimes from Burma to Sudan. Perhaps an Olympic boycott might get its attention

British court case punches holes in Al Gore's fantasy climate movie

Multiculturalism has a down side

One for the books


Duceppe annonce une offensive sur le français à la Chambre des communes

Rae prépare son parti à un compromis sur le discours du Trône

Dion n'hésitera pas à renverser le gouvernement

Rentrée parlementaire à Ottawa - Offensive bloquiste sur la question de la langue



KANDAHAR, Afghanistan — Canada has decided to sidestep the corrupt Afghan government and ensure the safety of Canadian soldiers by paying Afghan police directly, in cash.

The RCMP will continue to have problems recruiting enough people as long as it refuses to pay them during its 24 weeks of training.

The fact that Mr. Harper has now caved to most of Mr. Casey's concerns matters not. A mere Conservative backbencher dared question the Prime Minister's edict. For the crime of standing up for his voters, Mr. Casey will not only be banished forever from party ranks, but Mr. Harper vowed to unleash his war machine to bring the riding back under Conservative colours.



From: Bill McCullough

Hi Joe;

Congratulations to Ontarions...Ontarioites...whatever... for roundly defeating the most recent PR proposition. Of course, sooner or later, PR will come to roost in one province or another and we'll all get to see just how corrupting it will be in practice. I just hope it won't be here in BC, where PR was turned down last time, but looks to be going to get a second look by the folk in Victoria. There's way too much reefing going on out here in Lotusland.

Joe, keep Below 30 going. It's a useful forum.


From: "Adam McDonald"

Hi Joe,
Love receiving the Daily Digest. Could you please change my email address to adam.d.? It was admcdonald .

: Thank you Adam. Change made, Joe

"Ian Berg"

Subject: National proporotional representation

Would a majority of Canadians support having 100 Senate seats and
distributing them among the parties based on the share of the national
vote each receives in the general election (ie. 1.7% of the vote
equals 1 Senate seat)?

Ian Berg
Calgary, Alberta

. . . 100 x 1.7% = ?

The fraction would be disregarded for all the parties which means at
most 99 seats are distributed by this method.  The remaing Senate seat
would be appointed by the Head of State on the advice of the Prime
Minister, severely reducing the number of patronage appointments to
the Senate.


From: Ron Thornton

Hi Joe:

I'm glad you managed to keep that individual aboard, to keep them from running from the debate to leave the field to those who he or she disagrees with.  Of course, the fact this Quebec based person has views that I tend to agree with only adds to my appreciation they remain engaged.

Like him (or her), I also accept the distinction of being an "enlightened Conservative" or even a "compassionate capitalist", though I do like the former term better.  I am in full agreement with this person's stated thoughts in regards to Kyoto, Afghanistan, Newfoundland, Harper, crime, the Middle East, debt payment, taxation, and the environment.  We even have room for discussion on the provincial resource front.  For an Alberta boy, having such an enlightened Conservative expressing such views from Quebec; or anywhere east of Flin Flon, Kamsack, Esterhazy, or Moosomin; is always cause for celebration.
Obviously, not everyone who lives to the east of me is a complete idiot.  For example, I know of a person in Quebec who seems to have it right.

From: Peggy Merritt

Hi Joe:  Though I rarely make any contribution to your "below" I do
try to read most of it.  I find that those who are not Harper
supporter's seem to regularly quote the same matra in very lengthly
comments and of course that is their right.  I must say your unknown
writer in this email has hit the nail on the head and reflects my
view of our Prime Minister's incredible accomplishments in a
minority situation. Let's hope that Canadians will give him a
majority next time around. Peggy Merritt

Ernest Raymond

Through Joe to anonymous,

To me the essence of your entire post is illuminated in the one sentence, and I quote,"... you don't get your people anything when you call the PM a liar and work for his removal."

That one sentence tells me that PM Harper is vindictive, and will lash out with retribution towards people who don't act in accordance with blind loyalty and the BELIEF that PM Harper is a benevolent dictator.

PM Harper is the quintessential, "Trust me, it'll be alright" leader.

So tell me, anonymous, why is PM Harper, the benevolent dictator, permitting unfathomable volumes of fresh water (the lifeblood of ALL humanity) to be consumed in the conversion of the tarsands to saleable crude?

In my books, if PM Harper were truly a benevolent dictator, as you make him out to be, fresh water management would be priority number 1. Yet it doesn't even show up on his radar????

His radar is full of retail politics and political games to secure a majority so he can wield unfettered power (at this point he always has to get one of the opposition parties to agree to anything.

Two questions for you anonymous:
1) What will PM Harper do with unfettered power, and
2) Cite me one example of when PM Harper has personally put himself out, suppressed his wants needs and desires in the service of another.


P.S. I am a lifelong Progressive Conservative and I DON'T believe PM Harper is a benevolent dictator. I believe he is a game-playing manipulator. And there is a difference between winning and governing responsibly. One that PM Harper has not shown he is even aware of.

Prove me wrong, anonymous, don't ask me to BELIEVE.

From: "Efstratios Psarianos"

Zzzzz .... don't you ever sleep, you? I no longer feel alone .... Hahahaha

(Only need about 5 - 5 1/2 hours- and I can nap in the afternoon being retired)

From: "Rosalie Piccioni"

Not often is Canada mentioned in the subject of international Criminal Law, but here we are.

Subject: Funding Faith-based schools

Joe,     Why all the controversy over funding faith-based schools?  After all, those children have to get their education somehow, and no matter in what area of the educational system, it takes funding.  If not, then we can question the whole budget for education.  I really do have to laugh.      Rosie

From: Caspar Davis
Subject: Re: A QUESTION ASKED: "Would Harper stoop that low?"

Not to mention those who find it scary that Canada is becoming a militarized country, with Gen Hillyer becoming a political figure in all but name, government politicians constantly making pronouncements about how well things are going in Afghanistan that fly in the face of all objective reports, and Canada losing its international respect as an honest broker and peacekeeper.

Caspar Davis

From: "Suan H.Booiman"
Subject: Throne speech

Am glad to see that Harper at last put his finger in Central Canada's
nose and will have the throne speech when WESTERN CANADA will
be able to listen to it. Am sure the lefties in Eastern Canada could not

From: "S JUDD"

Subject: RE: A QUESTION ASKED: "Would Harper stoop that low?"

I have a few suggestions for the next campaign so that the mistakes of the Ont. provincial campaign aren't repeated.
1) Don't advertise your opponent. The first TV ads for both the NDP and the PC's featured pictures of Dalton McGinty before they switched to their own leaders for a few seconds at the end. Viewers retain little from a commercial. What stuck in their minds? McGinty! Introduce your leader to the public first, then criticise the opposition.
2) Research your campaign planks and discuss them with all candidates. Tory didn't do this properly. First was his "Creationism" blunder, then his retraction of the whole private schools idea made him look like an unsure, vacillating leader. Bad move from someone running on a leadership platform.

The PC's will be lucky to retain 30% of the popular vote, and it's not all Tory's fault.

(Sound advice)
From: Ron Thornton

Subject: Re: A QUESTION ASKED: "Would Harper stoop that low?"


You raise the subject of politicians doing things that might not exactly rate high on the fairness scale.  After being educated during the latter stages of the Reform Party through Politics 101, as taught by Preston Manning, I no longer expect such high ideals in the game of power politics, or power business, or power sports, or in any endeavor in which more than one seeks out a prize deemed worthy enough to fight for.  Anyone who does is naive and a dreamer, and should not be surprised that they wind up disappointed such power brokers don't share or practice lofty ideals of conduct.  They never will.  Such folks aim to win, as do their challengers, and that is why they are in the game and so many of us are not.  Such are the rules of the game, always has been, always will. I dare say the politics within your own church hierarchy also fails to meet such ideals, so why would we expect any more from those who seek the power of governing a nation.  It is a shame, I guess, but this is how things are.  As a subject for debate, I must say that it is as much a non-starter for me as expecting all to share the same values, levels of intelligence, and morality.  Nice to think about, but in the end is nothing but sheer fantasy.


From: Bear zerker
Subject: Federal double standards and deceat?

Can someone please explain to me why we have such political incompetence like this speaking on behalf of all Canadians... and a Defence Minister clearly incapable of being mature enough to do the job as important that his portfolio entails?

Canadian lives are on the line here, but at least we have a semblance of competence in leadership through our Chief of Defence Staff, General Hillier [thank god]
First off;
[1] Conservatives refused travel to Liberal Defence critic Denis Coderre, claiming the trip a stunt [whatever that means]...

[2] &[3] Then its seen, that not 1 but 2 conserva-saurus ministers are authorized travel to Afghanistan on what seems to a layman like me to be a purely political photo-op... hey, isn't this the same thing that Minister of Defence Peter McKay accused his critic of being involved in?

[4] And now finally we have word that Liberal Defence critic Denis Coderre has finally arrived just as Foreign Affairs Minister Maxime Bernier and International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda completed a 36-hour whirlwind, photo-op tour of Afghanistan and Canadian military operations... now why couldn't they share a flight to and from theatre with the Defence Critic? I'm thinking that it could have simplified the already overburdened responsibilities' of our soldiers.

This seems to me to be a purely political photo-op highlighting yet another childish tantrum by Peter McKay in Parliament, which unfortunately reflects badly on the Government of Canada and our commitment to our friends and allies of the past 100 years or so...
The most disturbing thing about this is what Peter McKay said in session...
"...Mr. Coderre is engaged, in my view, in a dangerous and elaborate stunt, a publicity stunt on his part," MacKay said, arguing that troops in Afghanistan could be put in unnecessary danger if Coderre were kidnapped and they had to try to save him..."
[what if this worse case scenario happens... what then Peter?... it would clearly be your incompetence that got our critic into this mess by your refusal to grant travel for a Liberal critic while allowing travel for Ministers Bernier & Oda]
and then theirs the reason and reply by our Defence critic;
" ... The critic,
Denis Coderre, said he is going on his own because he is tired of waiting for permission..." and "...he is going, he said, is to lay the groundwork for an eventual visit by Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion..."

Which makes sense to me... Its
LONG past due that Stéphane Dion goes and evaluates the job our people are doing in theatre before the main debate happens over our continued involvement... unfortunately his political capital has been prematurely spent by his declaration of ending the mission in 2009, maybe he's having second thoughts? [Liberals have a history of ignoring Canada's soldiers]

I want to know what's the matter with the children that are in charge of our Nation?... We have a dire need to remove the embarrassment that the Conserva-saurs continue to display for all the world to see... [e.g. Kyoto Agreement, Kelowna Accord, Atlantic Accord, Promised Tax Relief and a Promised Balanced Budget, the obvious sell-out of the Timber Industry, other Mismanagement of Trade Issues [China], the Omar Khadr file, The drug policy file [which ignores the findings of 3 royal commissions and the general population as a  whole ....we can put this debate to bed simply by having a national referendum on it]
The list goes on...
"NEW GOVERNMENT" unfortunately isn't new at all... but rather the same old radicals in new clown suits!
and then there's
the continuing vacuum that the Liberals seem to display... I  sorely miss former prime minister Jean Chrétien, least we knew what we had there!
dire idiocy of our 3rd and 4th political parties don't need to be mentioned...

what choice is left for the electorate? all I see is...
the Liberals, Progressives or the "NEW" Conservatives [same old clowns just wearing bigger shoes].
The Progressive Canadian Party must rise to this opportunity...
we can win our Progressive Conservative base back by showing the total incompetence of this Governing Neocon Alliance,

we need to mobilise candidates in every riding and get our alternative Progressive message out to Canadians... [which is what again?]
Progressive Canadians can and will make a difference to the future of Canada... if we get our message out now... the core of that message should be that the Conservatives may have abandoned us but we haven't abandoned our base...
Barry Blackman, CD
Tumbler Ridge, BC

MacKay calls Liberal's trip to Afghanistan a stunt;
It is irresponsible for the Liberal defence critic to travel to Afghanistan without the Conservative government's approval, Defence Minister Peter MacKay said Friday.

$25M for Afghan food aid announced;
Minister Bev Oda announced Sunday during a visit to Kandahar.

Canada's position on talks with Taliban unchanged: Bernier;
Afghanistan's government will decide on its own whether to hold talks with the Taliban, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Maxime Bernier said after a meeting Saturday with Afghan President Hamid Karzai in Kabul.

Liberal defence critic to arrive in Kandahar as Tory ministers head home;
Coderre's arrival comes as Foreign Affairs Minister Maxime Bernier and International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda completed a 36-hour whirlwind, photo-op tour of Afghanistan and Canadian military operations


From:Charles Tupper
Subject: The Alarming Parallels Between 1929 and 2007

The Alarming Parallels Between 1929 and 2007
Has deregulation left the economy at risk of another 1929-scale crash? Should the Fed keep bailing out speculators? Robert Kuttner testified yesterday before the House Financial Services Committee.

From: "Rebecca Gingrich" <>
Subject: Scholars confirm plans for N. American Union

Scholars confirm plans for N. American Union

'Amero coming within decade'
Strategist expects currency changes as Canadian dollar matches greenback

From: Jacob Rempel

Subject: the uses of history to think about the present embroglio

I am repeatedly amazed at how many educated
Americans repeat the notion that one motive
for the war is a 
"... a democratic revolution."
As I see it, the USA regime has no serious interest
in creating independent real democracy anywhere.
That would sabotage their special interests and their
intentions for an American hegemony wherever their
corporate interests have investments or plans.
The idealistic view of American regime policy in deeply
imbedded in most Americans, even the well educated.
They all seem to accept as a matter of natural law that
the USA power is essentially good and necessary
around the world. It should of course be exercised
more intelligently next time, they explain, so as not
to make the same mistakes again .
Paul W. Schroeder does this really well in his
essay. I look forward to Part 2 in the next issue
of The American Conservative.
[( I don't expect him to suggest the necessary end to the American
empire and other imperial powers, and the substitution of a more
meaningful and effective United Nations to mediate and arbitrate
international competition for power and resources, even among
the big powers like the United States, Russia, and China.)]
With this caveat, I recommend  his analysis of the
monumental American error in Iraq and the rest of 
the Middle East and Central Asian theatre of war.
...Jacob Rempel
September 24, 2007 Issue
Copyright © 2007 The American Conservative
September 24, 2007 Issue
Copyright © 2007 The American Conservative
The U.S. needlessly inflamed Iraq in the vain
hope of sparking a democratic revolution.
We got an inferno instead.
by Paul W. Schroeder

From: "Mel Christian"

Subject: -Re maybe there's abetter way?

Joe / Mary - Sue
Low cost and very effective, vitamin C, H2O2, and Ozone  O3. All three must be used with care, with the known conditions and safety. Each will produce results that exceed that of most expensive alternatives, this has been proven.
But those that want to make a lot of money look to exotic alternatives.
Ozone can be produced at the required strength to stop all viruses and bacteria. And without any danger to the public. I produce ozone and use it for a wide verity of needs. Safely!
H2O2, hydrogen peroxide, close to ozone and very effective. I use approximately 10 liters a month of 35% Food Grade.
Vitamin C probably the most versatile vitamin, very effective, very much needed in our diet.
Mel Christian

From: Brian Marlatt

Subject: Medicare Audits Show Problems in Private Plans
The New York Times  
US experience with private health insurance. Auditor's Report.

NATIONAL   | October 7, 2007
Medicare Audits Show Problems in Private Plans
Medicare recipients have been victimized by private insurers that run the drug benefit program, according to a review of federal audits.

PM hands Dion the gift of choice
Liberals can now pick election date that is best for them

Hhhmmmm ... not particularly well-chosen as a title. The CPC can choose when the next election takes place (despite that law they passed, which legislates fixed election-dates?), and they can do so by tormenting the Liberals along the way. You see, the three opposition parties are stuck in a situation where only of one has to vote with the Tories for the other two to vote against without bringing the House down. (This is true of Tories+NDP too ... I believe that the number of MPs are 126 + 29 = 156, which means and absolute majority every time).
So, for the Tories, the game becomes one of Pin the Tail on the Jackass. All they need to do is to choose an issue that sticks in the craw of one opposition party and legislate it as a confidence vote. Assuming that two of the opposition parties will vote against the Tory position, that leaves the remaining party as the Jackass that either has to support the Tory or to have only part of its members vote against its legislation. Since the Liberals are the opposition party with the (much) greater number of seats (more than the Bloc and NDP combined), that means that they'll usually be the Jackass that gets stung by Tory hornets and Bloc/NDP mosquitoes. Either that, or they'll have to play a nervous game of "I dare you. No I DOUBLE dare YOU" with the other opposition parties.
Who'd have thunk ... a minority government, of a single party, sticking it to the majority, which is deeply divided and can't co-ordinate itself. And all because the lead opposition party is in disarray and because of the existence of Bloc, which is regionally-based and ethnically-based (no matter what its MPs say) and thus can't ally itself reliably to any other party that has a presence outside Quebec. I LOVE it! Let the rats each other up!
P.S. By sticking their tongues out and doing the nyah-nyah to the Opposition, the Tories are being "baveux", as franco-Canadians would say. Who knows where this word comes from, but the noun "bave" means "drool". The image that "baveux" evokes is that of a smart-ass with a cruel streak who mocks someone verbally. Sort of like a snot-nosed kid who sticks his tongue out, who nyah-nyahs someone who's down in the mouth, and who's into schadenfreude ("taking pleasure in others' misfortune").
Now, what I'm about to say is unscientific, so take it for what it's worth. But I feel that we Quebecers as a whole have a mild thing for politicians when they're a bit "baveux" on occasion. Mind you, crass "baveurisme" doesn't do it for us .. I'm talking about a(n implied) sneering, looking down one's nose, inspired, witty put-down that sticks it to the other guy. And after having lived 12+ years of Liberal "baveurisme" until 2006, with a big dose of PC Party fecklessness along the way, (I signed up and became a PC in September 1993, right after The Kim Creature dropped the writ, can you believe it ... I STILL recall the looks of amazement when I first showed up at the (now ex-) Scarborough West campaign office), I'm enjoying every moment of this.
Stick it to 'em, Stevie! RIDE them 'til they drop. Heeyeah, heeyeaaah, whoop-whoop!