Monday, October 29, 2007

Daily Digest October 29, 2007



CHARLOTTETOWN GUARDIAN - A reasonable protection
for brave soldiers print this article
Reservists who risk their lives should not have
to worry about whether their jobs at home might also be on the line.

HALIFAX NEWS - Dion's weakness floats Harper's boat


MONTREAL GAZETTE - The U.S. should apologize to Arar

Ottawa must protect consumers

OTTAWA CITIZEN - Mixing together

Paying what is owed

TORONTO STAR - Clip the loonie's wings

NATIONAL POST - The Facebook phenomenon


HAMILTON SPECTATOR - Charity code needs teeth

LONDON FREE PRESS - Kyoto accord, rest in peace

K-W RECORD - Toronto contract points to trouble


WINDSOR STAR - Safe products
Fed's action is overdue

Senate referendum

SUDBURY STAR - Ethanol isn't the panacea for environment



SASKATOON STARPHOENIX - Gov't must act to bring back true competition








PRINCE GEORGE CITIZEN - Taser moratorium


VANCOUVER PROVINCE - Let's stop knocking the Tory plan to reduce the GST

VICTORIA TIMES-COLONIST - Hypocrisy clouds Tory secrecy


Hello Ottawa? Ici Kandahar Here Kandahar
I crossed half the world to come to Kandahar, Afghanistan.
My goal: to excavate the case of Canadian aid. .
Ottawa will invest 39 million this year in
Kandahar province.

It's you, Canadians, who are responsible for torture ..."

Canada brushes off allegations of Afghan torture

DND projects overbudget, overdue
Taxpayers left in the dark as internal watchdog
sounds alarm on $7.3B in 'high-risk' contracts

Area firms prepare for $1B DND tender
Navy frigate contract would bring jobs to defence sector

Forces wage PR war in remote Afghan areas

We don't need Canada's 'heroes,' Afghan MP tells Victoria rally
Material, moral support is welcome, she says, but
soldiers unwittingly back U.S., warlords

Job in Afghanistan is far from done
Canadians have to decide if we have the will to stay in troubled country

Kandahar: why Canada's war is all but over

Trusts seen enjoying tax shield for now

Canada's manufacturers feeling left on their own

Canada's military exports soar as numbers go unreported: CBC investigation

Large grain shippers step into CN Rail complaint

Canada to press NATO to share burden

An unpresidented EU

Canada defies China with Dalai Lama meeting

Months after a split are crucial for dad's relations with kids: study

Tumour type not linked to smoking: study
Breast cancer patients who smoke no more likely
to have an aggressive form of disease than non-smokers, researchers find

Schools can't replace the home

Room for growth in health care

Fundamental breach confuses

Chretien's lawyers try to quash Gomery report

Hollow symbols don't reduce crime

Immigrants' children face challenges, study finds

Reasonably accommodated
It should be a simple matter for Muslim
immigrants to settle in to Canadian society: You accommodate, and we adapt

The false cure-all
From girlhood on, young South Asian women are
told that marriage is everything; it isn't necessarily so

Tories sending mixed election signals
Stelmach says they're ready; insider disagrees

Discomfort in the heartland

Tories line up behind besieged rookie premier
Being under attack by both Big Oil and the NDP
may yet work out in Stelmach's favour

B.C. Premier signs international treaty to fight climate change

Liberal MP quits due to spending allegations

The Bloc proposed a motion against the federal spending power

Confidence issue reveals PM as 'bully,' observer says

The relevance of the Manley panel -- the
five-member group of eminent Canadians charged
with recommending Canada's future course in
Afghanistan -- becomes cloudier with every
passing day

Obsession with trivia blunts Liberal efforts in the House
Party is too busy scandal-mongering to deal with substantive issues

Riding uproar over Tories' decision to oust executive

Khan report blocked, despite Tory promise on secrecy

Dion caught in the middle on Quebec

Ottawa seeks to end Canada Post's foreign monopoly

Ottawa to unveil fiscal report, mum on tax cuts

Will Flaherty wield tax axe?

Anatomy of an Access To Information release: 'talking points' blacked out

Ottawa shoots down space tourism project rumours

Flaherty ignores advice on black-market cigarettes

Flaherty should leave securities regulator issue alone

Link between 'megafires' and climate change is credible

No simple formula for retirement needs

Acclaimed skin-whitening studies from Ottawa raise racism concerns

Wake up, Toronto – you're bigger than you think

Go ahead, just say yes to your government pusher
Canada's provinces promote the deadliest drug of all

Modern China struggles to maintain ties to past

Racism, with a Quebec spin

The void behind the curtain

PM's boast called empty rhetoric
Canada doesn't warrant Harper's `energy superpower' label, author of paper says

"The Rich are Getting Richer--The Poor are Getting Poorer"

Tom Flanagan is full of crap

Conservatives slip in poll, still ahead

Governments stand by while nature vanishes

Un député en moins

Afghanistan - MacKay ne cherche pas à remplacer le général Hillier

En bref - Passeport Canada en retard

Le Bloc présente une motion contre le pouvoir fédéral de dépenser

Flaherty aurait négligé un rapport réclamant une lutte à la contrebande

Énergie nucléaire: le PC se fait discret

«C'est vous, Canadiens, qui êtes responsables de la torture...»

Allô Ottawa? Ici Kandahar



In 1999, Jean Chrétien's government began
refusing access requests by saying that the
minister's office is not part of the department they head.

That interpretation was contested in court by
then-information commissioner John Reid, and
sharply criticized by the Conservatives and their
predecessor parties, the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives.

Mr. Harper promised in the last election campaign
to scrap it. The Conservative campaign platform
promised that the party's first task would be to
pass an "accountability act" that would
"implement" Mr. Reid's recommendations for reform.


Is in the article below.


The Hill Times, October 29th, 2007

A lament for Progressive Conservatives: Marlatt

Progressive Conservative MP Bill Casey made the
difficult choice of accepting absorption of the
Tories by the CA, despite the classical liberal
laissez-faire capitalism borrowed from U.S.
Republicans when the CA was still called the
Reform Party and the CA's ongoing campaign to
replace parliamentary democracy and Canadian
federalism with American constitutionalism and
U.S. states-rights federalism. Eventually he made
the right choice, by voting against a budget
written by a party which continues to demonstrate
why it should not be trusted. Stephen Harper has
failed in his duty of loyalty to the Crown and
the people of Canada–as the Throne Speech
demonstrates so elegantly. Bill Casey is an
honourable man. Can the same be said of Defence
Minister Peter Mackay or Prime Minister Stephen Harper?

Mr. Harper's failure as a leader originates in
the same provincialism and corresponding
preference for an alien politics and social
intolerance that Preston Manning looked for in
members when he created the Reform Party in the
first place. Calling demagoguery "grassroots"
merely exposes the reasons why the CPC will come
to an end sooner rather than later and why the
CPC is such a danger to democracy. Harper's old
Reformers can't stand the Progressive
Conservatives who grudgingly went along with the
"merger" and have been quick to marginalize their
influence, making tokens of those who remain when
they cannot be co-opted–the Harrisites who
elected Dalton McGuinty, notwithstanding. It's
really just another example of why the
"Conservative Party" is likely to blow apart at the first small difficulty.

Brian Marlatt

White Rock, B.C.

(The letter-writer is a member of the Progressive Canadian Party.)

Al Heisey

GTA policy and other e.d.a.fears

As a policy buff I am incredibly clicked off by the indifference
of my own e.d.a of St. Paul's to the subject. The
national office of the party issued, to riding presidents at
least, a most open and interesting approach to review of
the party constitution.

However, I gather this never was forwarded to members
of the local board, let alone mere spear carriers like
myself, (in the great procession, as I like to imagine it!)
The process did not allow much time for a review by
those who might have views and since there is no constitution
committee in my local association I would
assume that we would have a policy committee extant to
which the matter could and should have been refered.
There is not a word out of the last annual meeting of the
association on who handles policy, if anyone, or how
others, not on the board, as I am not, might invite ourselves
to the discussions.

I consider this merely another illustration of how
"singing from the same song sheet" is a crumby way to
encourage interest and participation in the years-long
buildups to major and minor questions facing the party.
I argue that a widespread discussion of the party's present
constitution, how it evolved, where it might go, who
wants what, are all legit questions involving the members
of the party and the general, listening, public.
Monolithica is alive and well!

From: Rubie Britton
Subject: Reward for "Killing a Canadian"

Pakistan Newspaper Ad - Reward for killing a Canadian

You probably missed it in the local news, but there was a report
that someone in Pakistan had advertised in a newspaper an offer of a
reward to anyone who killed a Canadian - any Canadian.

An Australian dentist wrote the following editorial to help define
what a Canadian is, so they would know one when they found one.

An Australian Definition of a
Canadian - Written by an Australian Dentist

"A Canadian can be English, or French, or Italian, Irish, German,
Spanish, Polish, Russian or Greek. A Canadian can be Mexican,
African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian,
Asian, Arab, Pakistani or Afghan.

A Canadian may also be a Cree, Metis, Mohawk, Blackfoot, Sioux, or
one of the many other tribes known
as native Canadians. A Canadian's
religious beliefs range from Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim,
Hindu or none. In fact, there are more Muslims in Canada than in
Afghanistan. The key difference is that in Canada they are free to
worship as each of them chooses.
Whether they have a religion or no
religion, each Canadian ultimately answers only to God, not to the
government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government
and for God.

A Canadian lives in one of the most
prosperous lands in the history
of the world. The root of that prosperity can be found in the
Charter of Rights and Freedoms which recognize the right of each
person to the pursuit of happiness.

A Canadian is generous and Canadians have helped out just about
every other nation in the world in
their time of need, never asking
a thing in return. Canadians welcome the best of everything, the
best products, the best books, the best music, the best food, the
best services and the best minds. But they also welcome the least
the oppressed, the outcast and the rejected.

These are the people who built Canada. You can try to kill a
Canadian if you must as other blood-thirsty tyrants in the world
have tried but in doing so you could
just be killing a relative or a
neighbour. This is because Canadians
are not a particular people from
a particular place. They are the embodiment of the human spirit of
freedom. Everyone who holds to that
spirit, everywhere, can be a Canadian."

Please keep this going! Pass this around the World. Then pass it
around again. It says it all, for all of us.

'Keep your stick on the ice'

"and your head up"

As ever,

Khan report blocked, despite Tory promise on secrecy

October 29, 2007

OTTAWA -- The federal government has rejected
requests for the report on the Middle East penned
by floor-crossing MP Wajid Khan by arguing that
documents in the Prime Minister's Office are not
covered by Canada's Access to Information Act.

The response suggests that Prime Minister Stephen
Harper is hiding his records behind a secrecy
policy that he promised to change in the last election campaign.

Mr. Harper appointed Mr. Khan, then a Liberal MP,
to a post as his special adviser on the Middle
East in August of 2006. Mr. Khan promised then to
make his report public before leaving on his
16-day Middle East trip, which cost $38,000. But
the Prime Minister declined to release it.

Mr. Khan later switched sides to the Tories.

Now, the Privy Council Office, the central
government department headed by the Prime
Minister, has responded to an
access-to-information request by saying that it
has no such report under its "control."

A PCO official, Susan Fitzmorris, said that's
because records in the Prime Minister's Office -
which now has 92 employees - are not covered by the access law.

The government's assertion that ministers'
offices are not covered by the access law is not
new: In 1999, Jean Chrétien's government began
refusing access requests by saying that the
minister's office is not part of the department they head.

That interpretation was contested in court by
then-information commissioner John Reid, and
sharply criticized by the Conservatives and their
predecessor parties, the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives.

Mr. Harper promised in the last election campaign
to scrap it. The Conservative campaign platform
promised that the party's first task would be to
pass an "accountability act" that would
"implement" Mr. Reid's recommendations for reform.

Those recommendations include an amendment
intended to dispel any claim that ministers'
offices are not covered by the act. "This
provision is included to clarify that the offices
of ministers form part of the department over
which they preside," Mr. Reid's recommendations state.

"It's passing strange how quickly they forget," Mr. Reid said in an interview.

Mr. Harper's government did table a watered-down
accountability act last year, but without the access-to-information reforms.

Instead, the government sent a discussion paper
for study by a Commons committee, but the
committee quickly urged the government to simply
introduce Mr. Reid's reforms in a bill by Dec. 15, 2006.

A spokesman for Justice Minister Rob Nicholson,
Genevieve Breton, says the minister still wants
the committee to study the discussion paper.

In the meantime, the Conservative government is
fighting for the secrecy policy in court,
insisting ministers' offices and the PMO aren't covered by the law.

Mr. Reid's challenge of that claim in four court
cases is being continued by his successor, Robert Marleau.