Thursday, November 22, 2007

Daily Digest November 22, 2007



ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - This just in: Oswald did it

HALIFAX NEWS - Keeping files secret not in public interest

AMHERST DAILY NEWS - Is wind power the answer?

OTTAWA CITIZEN - Consumer skepticism
It's a lot cheaper to print "environmentally friendly" on a label than to overhaul a manufacturing process, so you can see why companies could be tempted to make exaggerated claims.

         Drug-induced stupidity

         Combatting digital drift
        OK, so you're teaching a class of 40 students and half of them have their noses buried in computers.

BELLEVILLE INTELLIGENCER - Efforts help to reduce teen pregnancy rate

TORONTO STAR - Fighting for a principle

NATIONAL POST - The UN's worthless criticism

HAMILTON SPECTATOR - Medal money goes a long way

SUDBURY STAR - Say goodbye to the family farm in Ontario

SASKATOON STARPHOENIX - NATO shirkers' shortsightedness endangers globe

        On wrong track

REGINA LEADER-POST - Troubling Questions (II)
A psychology of fear makes us all victims

CALGARY HERALD - That rainy day will come

It's early, but it's a long list after all

EDMONTON JOURNAL - At least consider a provincial force

LETHBRIDGE HERALD - Website of health info a keeper

PRINCE GEORGE CITIZEN - NDP's gender equity plan offensive

VANCOUVER SUN - Court ruling challenges Victoria to move faster on native treaties

VANCOUVER PROVINCE - Automatic jail terms for drug pushers a gratifying move


Action plan aims to cure aboriginals' health crisis
Challenges daunting, chief says. Blueprint's goal is to reduce shocking stats, including shorter lifespan for First Nations

Contact with Taliban leaders increasing: Karzai

Hillier rejects call to enter Pakistan

Forces enlists former Afghan warlord for protection

Taliban 'closing in on Kabul'

Canadian army paints upbeat picture of Afghanistan, contradicts Senlis Council

Private guns for hire

NATO chief 'not satisfied' with troop numbers in Afghanistan
Meanwhile, Taliban has been reaching out to government, Afghan president says

NATO leader to bring a note of optimism to Manley hearings on Afghanistan

Ottawa asks Washington for flight exemption

Pakistan suspended from Commonwealth

Afghanistan proves no friend of Canada in key UN vote

U.S. gives Russia new missile proposals

Ontario parents shunning HPV vaccine for girls
Prevents Cancer; Health official blames media for stoking fears of risks

Tories invest in D&D

Tasers help protect the public
Conducted energy devices offer an important option to police officers when dealing with violent subjects

Immigrants, too, must accommodate society, hearing told
Mixed message in Sherbrooke. Newcomers with 'right' values welcome

McGuinty won't retreat on demand for seats

Develop offshore resources, B.C. energy chief saysComment23
Chandler is the king of no comment. But the Tory party will make the final comment on whether he runs as the Calgary-Egmont candidate

Tax cuts, crime and Schreiber on the agenda

Van Loan steps up attacks on McGuinty over more Commons seats for Ontario

Opposition barred from Canadian delegation to Bali climate change talks

War-crimes allegations 'un-Canadian': MacKay

David Orchard Seeks Liberal Nomination In The North

Liberal MPs join McGuinty in seat debate

                         L'affaire Schreiber

MPs call Schreiber, Mulroney for early testimony over objections of Tories

Opposition unites to force Commons investigation

Schreiber asks for extradition appeal at SCC

Harper attacks Liberals' mixed messages

How poor really was Mulroney?

Strange, but true: Mulroney taking envelopes filled with cash
The former PM was not some naïve kid from the boonies when he took the money

Mike Duffy Live: A discussion of what will happen if Schreiber is extradited 17:23

Mike Duffy Live: Party strategists debate whether Schreiber should be extradited before testifying at the inquiry 7:31

New Atlantic Accord tabled in parliament

Cracking down on drugs sparks 'turf wars'

Prentice assailed over handling of loonie's rise

Anti-terror costs take toll on transporters

Stop glorifying terror, MP urges
Dosanjh criticizes politicians' refusal to condemn parade float honouring Sikh militant

Biofuel pitstops run low

Electric vehicle notion gets a kick-start

Histrionic partisanship

Senate plays vital role
Canada's current system avoids inefficiencies while reviewing potential laws

World views collide over water crisis

MPs must stake their territory

Bring down the welfare wall

$144B addiction
Harper should keep his vow to slash corporate welfare

Why subsidize spectrum?

Why not a scholarship for white men?

The West should lead Canada's energy debate

Vital to ensure strategic focus for R & D labs


L'opposition demande que la condamnation à mort d'un Canadien soit commuée

Un comité parlementaire va entendre Mulroney et Schreiber

Le Pakistan est suspendu du Commonwealth pour ses mesures anti-démocratiques

L'armée canadienne peint un portrait trop rose du conflit en Afghanistan

Les talibans gagnent du terrain

Liste de passagers: Ottawa veut faire exempter les transporteurs canadiens

Mulroney s'attire des sarcasmes

Conférence de l'ONU à Bali: Baird n'invite pas l'opposition


"the Quebec standard" – one MP for every 105,000 people.

"C-22, An Act to amend the Constitution Act, 1867  (Democratic representation)"

         (Democratic representation) is in the name of C22.  It is not "being partisan and small minded" to request that there be universal application of a standard.

        Such has not been done in the case of C22, as not only the Premier of the Province of Ontario but others are pointing out
        As with any decision there are rationales behind why an action is taken.
        Benighted Canadian living in Ontario that I am, I see no rationale justifying democratic representation being denied one province out of ten.
        Can anyone lift the veil of darkness?



Mr. MacKay insisted that Liberal defence critic Denis Coderre was making "scurrilous allegations" against soldiers, while Mr. Coderre bristled that the Defence Minister had attacked his patriotism for raising questions about the government's conduct.

Van Loan said McGuinty was "being partisan and small-minded" for seeking greater representation.

Why can't I come on that nice trip with you."


From: Ron Thornton

Subject: Re: Daily Digest November 21, 2007

Howdy Joe:

Good Lord, some people are mindless twits.  What spawned this little rant was the comment from the Council of Europe's secretary general in regards to Stephen Harper's  decision to stop seeking clemency for Canadians on death row in American jails.  According to the report linked to Wednesday's Digest, Terry Davies likened Harper government to Pontius Pilate, who washed his hands of the decision to crucify Jesus Christ because a mob demanded Christ's execution.  So, according to this esteemed European goof, convicted murderer Ronald Smith is now right up there on par with Jesus Christ.  Is it me, or is the guy retarded?  Do I give a damn if Smith, who put .22 slugs into the heads of a couple of men who gave him a lift so he could steal their car, does not receive clemency?  Why?  Maybe there is some reason to save this killer from the lethal injection the state of Montana has degreed should be his fate, and drag his sacred ass back across our civilized borders, though quite frankly I can not think of one.  There is no doubt that he was the man who pulled the trigger and there is no doubt as to why.  There is no miscarriage of justice here.  The right guy is slated for execution for the right reasons.  However, that being said, maybe Terry Davies has a valid reason for elevating Ronald Smith to the same status as Jesus Christ, but Smith will have to raise both Thomas Running Rabbit and Harvey Mad Man from the dead before I'll buy in to Davies' nonsense.

Ron Thornton

Subject: Re: Daily Digest November 21, 2007

Re John McKay adaptation message, I remind him and digest readers that there is a saying "don't crap where you eat".

Adapting to our own excesses is not the answer to global warming. Rather, we can effectively use:

A. ground heating

B. hydro

C. wind power, etc.

The above (and other technologies) are major proven economical technologies that vastly reduce the need for fossil fuel green-house gas technologies.

The avoidance message inherent in John Mckay editorial should not be taken seriously.


Eugene Parks

"Jean  Pycock"

Subject: Re: Daily Digest November 21, 2007

I want to thank Michael Watkins for his posting.  People who think we should
just "adapt" to climate change, should read George Monbiot's book
"Heat --How To Stop The Planet From Burning". There are things we can do to
slow it down , if we aren't too ignorant, too complacent, too selfish and/or
too greedy to change our ways of doing things.

From: "Brian D. Marlatt"
Subject: The Royal Society of London on Climate Change.

Two years ago The Royal Society of London, Britain's premier and perhaps the world's foremost scientific academy, produced a summary of the facts and fictions current in the popular media regarding human induced climate change.  Much of what we read, hear and see in the media is interest generated; indeed, not long after publication of the Royal Society's summary of the mythologies promoted by climate change deniers (Mr. Kay seems to fall well within this category), senior scientists and Fellows of the Royal Society found it necessary to take the unprecedented step of calling for Big Oil, in the form of Exxon Mobile, to stop funding climate change denial.  It is all very reminiscent of the tobacco wars, except this time it is not just individuals who are persuaded to indulge a vice and children exposed to second hand smoke who are the victims, it is all of us.  As one representative from Dubai said to an American legal delegate to a conference on the subject, it may be that claims of those who study climate change are overstated, but if they are right his nation will cease to exist.  What we see in the Arctic suggests...more than suggests... that his worry is well-founded.
It was the position of the Progressive Conservative Party, and I think it should responsibly be the position of all genuine conservatives, that we should heed the warning of science and be wary of those whose vested interest puts them along the way of denial, for in the denier is not "progress with care", not a progressive-conservative approach to change whether from within or without, but calculated reaction.  John Herron, the last Tory Environment Critic and, at the time, the longest serving holder of the Environment portfolio of any party in parliament, was that Global Warming induced Climate Change is a genuine threat and the Progressive Conservative party was critical, justly, of Liberal inaction on the file.  Some stood apart, of course.  Jim Prentice, living in the oil patch, was as susceptible as any who hear nothing but the drum beat of Big Oil from day to day to day.  A lie repeated often enough, in time, obtains the resonance of truth, albeit falsely.  Prentice's weakness in this regard, seems to have been part of a larger incapacity for critical thinking, whatever his other qualities, and it this, perhaps which explains his willingness to be dragged into the vulgar morass of the "unite the right" fallacy, perhaps even believing Stephen Harper's claim that he wanted to create a party for all conservatives, a claim we now all know to be a lie.  But it was the Reform Party, even after it changed its name to the Canadian Alliance, which was the most at fault and the least cautious and conservative in its approach to the boom town mentality of Big Oil, whether in boom-and-bust Calgary or not, and the most unthinkingly susceptible to climate change denial.
In 2002, Bob Mills, CA Environment Critic, Climate Change denier, and a worthy predecessor of Rona Ambrose, came to my riding claiming "Global Warming" is junk science and that he had the form of a just published (i.e. must be true because it's just been published and can't be criticized because you probably haven't read it yet) contrary opinion by a single researcher (as opposed to the consensus within the scientific community) - of course that's not how science works, but bad politics and bad journalism does.  The kicker came later: a "socialist" United Nations was less credible than the (now discredited Big Oil Republican) temporary resident of the White House who wouldn't ratify Kyoto, and Kyoto itself was a "European bureaucratic nightmare."  How little has changed in the ranks of the party which, calling itself Conservative, has abandoned Kyoto in favour of alignment with the Big Oil Republican soon to be former temporary resident of the White House.  It's all a matter of record.
The world's foremost scientific academies, like the Royal Society, and international congresses of scientists, like the International Panel on Climate Change, may yet be found to have overstated their a case in attributing climate change so greatly to human activity, however unlikely that may seem, yet it is clear and certain that neither vested interest in denial nor its obsequious political and journalistic fellow-travellers can be relied upon to tell us truths.
Brian Marlatt
In what was South Surrey-White Rock-Langley.

From: "Rene Moreau"
Subject: Re: Daily Digest November 20, 2007

To Joe
From Rene Moreau (416-489-8347)
re; the move to the Liberal Party
   Considering the moves made by the neo-cons of putting their own people into any parties they think might be a threat, like they did to the Green Party, not even hiding the fact, to plant doubt, and other parties as well, I would look for  mole that caused the stir, as a reason for quitting.
   For an example, look at the ploy used by the Cons to put Scot Brison into the Liberals, who immediately put him in charge of privatization of Public Works, Canada and he started putting Canadian government real estate in the hands of  foreign real estate companies with offices and property  in Las Vegas.
   The ploy worked beautifully, since the Cons carried it on when they got in.
       And the taxpayer still foots the bill since we the taxpayers get to keep paying for upkeep of the buildings even after the government sold them out from under us!
   Neat eh?
   Keep your head up.
Different subject;
   This morning, November 21st, 2007, on CBC Metro Morning, a woman was interviewed from the demonstrations in Georgia, near Russia.
   She said the government used all the usual ploys, water, tear gas, rubber bullets and plain clothes types, but she mentioned at the end about a weird sound that sent the people into a panic.
   Some time ago mention was made of a machine that used what I think was called a sonic neural destabilizer, or something like that that was for crowd control. But it was American! Interesting?
           Rene Moreau (416-489-8347)

Subject: This Thanksgiving Day message brought to you by EP ("Greek Elvis") Anti-Christ ...
From: "Efstratios Psarianos"

Hi, Joe.
Here's a little something to bring a chuckle to most Canadians. This was e-mailed to me from the ECP Centre, an "independent, Canadian" group that aims to "... defend the freedom for Christian thought, speech and expression in Canada's public square". Note that the "Centre" has spelt its name with an "re" rather than an "er" (Center) a l'americaine. But every once in a while, it lets slip a little something that reveals from where it gets its marching orders.
Why Thanksgiving Day makes secularists go mad
Exclusive: Tristan Emmanuel asserts mixing of religion, state causes unbelievers to squirm
Thursday, November 22, 2007

As usual, some secularists are having a pretty hard time celebrating Thanksgiving this year. So much so that some of them are trying to besmirch its heritage.

It must be frustrating for them. After all, when you don't believe in God, whom do you "thank" at Thanksgiving?

Perhaps one of the reasons for their attempted revision of history is that Thanksgiving is the one North America holiday that has its history firmly rooted in the blatant intermingling of religion and politics.

A brief survey of the practice of Thanksgiving in both America and Canada clearly demonstrates that the holiday was established by acts of government, and that it had deep religious roots.


-- 30 --
The tone and content are obviously American-inspired, which suggested to me that this thing was a front for a US-based or US-supported outfit. I went on lookout for little things that would give it away, and inevitably some things here and there did. In the example above, "one of  the reasons for their (liberals) attempted revision of history is that Thanksgiving is the one North American holiday ...". Uuuhhh, guess what ... Canadian Thanksgiving was a month ago or so, and US Thanksgiving is now, hence the timing. Back to school for Mr. Emmanuel, and back to the US for more instructions from his commisars ...
I mean really, subtlety is lost upon this swine.
P.S. To Mr. Emmanuel: And secularists aren't people "who don't believe in God". Those are atheists. Get your language straight, ya dink!
P.P.S. And no, I'm not anti-religious. I'm anti-stupid ...

From: Michael Watkins

For DD:

Michael Watkins - Vancouver-Kingsway:

In another note submitted today in response to Tuesday's Digest article inclusion of a John MacKay piece, I noted that society has not been making "progress, with care". This note is quite directly related.

In response to Al, Joe wrote:
> All of us calling ourselves "conservatives" must decide this: Am I
> a social-conservative, a neo-conservative or a
> progressive-conservative?

Throughout modern times, certainly at the federal level in Canada, most "conservative" governments as well as those who adopt liberalism, are largely indistinguishable when it comes fundamental approaches

Sure the actors come and go and some play their part better than others, but at their core, there are few differences, de - at least when it comes to why the average individual casts a ballot.

Capital C Conservative and capital L Liberal are but team labels, not true descriptions of ideology. One team once supported liberal free trade, one once opposed it, only to later enact it. Both parties have changed much over the history of our nation, through various alliances and mergers - some done honourably, some not.

In principal issues of state - for example those which revolve around economic policy and trade - there are but inconsequential differences between neo/social/progressive conservatives and those labelled as "Liberals".

Whether the issue is domestic trade or imports from China, the current government is no different than the last two: laissez-faire economics with as little actual governance as can be gotten away with. Hide, divert attention, obfuscate where possible. Step in only when the public finally discover problems. Repeat as necessary.

The only practical difference as to who runs the country (that task is left largely to the Bank of Canada and finance department policy mandarins, along with corporate entities, anyway) is that one label is attached to a certain set of insiders, old-boys, and hangers on, and the other label is attached to a different group of same. Its
been the same for decades now, only these days one team is western biased at present (with the usual dose of central-Canadian insider influences), while the other disorganized one rump remains central-biased.

One markets itself by employing populist tactics its leader is known to personally despise; the other appeals to higher callings and human nature that it purports to believe in but rarely fulfils.

From the average Canadian's perspective, what happens in Ottawa makes no difference at all; from the insider's perspective, its a completely different matter.

Perhaps the only meaningful difference between the two opposing teams is that one incarnation cares little for federalism--despite some having some roots, illegitimately gained in the minds of some, in creating it--and has the chutzpa to actively weaken federalism, while the other historically has said it supports a strong federation but currently and frequently historically has been too weak to implement real support.

So, is there a need for another political party that also calls itself 'conservative'? In my view, yes, but I personally see little need for a party that doesn't at least attempt to fix that which is wrong with other parties branded "conservative".

Joe also wrote:
> "Progress with care" is my position, the progressive-conservative > position.

I believe "progress with care" is indeed an appropriate guiding spirit for a political organization, and I further believe that no national federal party of the big or small C or L labels has truly internalized this; certainly none acts this out, nor is ever likely to given their elites and interested stakeholders.

Extending the slogan "progress with care" with "on behalf of all and future generations" is essentially my sense of what "progressive conservatism" ought to represent.

In my more naive days its what I expected the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada to represent, and, perhaps it did while it had no chance of obtaining power.

While "progress with care" is an appealing ethos for a political party, it must not mean "continue as you are and always have done until change can no longer be resisted, however necessary change may be, and may always have been."

"Progress with care" must not be a 'wink-wink' definition actually meaning "predisposed to be opposed to change".

"Progress with care" must not mean "keep a blind eye until poked hard". "Progress with care" must not be a code phrase used among those who seek to influence or govern as a slogan to hide from discovery or otherwise protect those who would shed their responsibility to actually govern.
By govern, I take the word to mean as ensuring that the public good is looked after, for this and subsequent generations, with the consent of those being governed.

Progress, with care? The industrial revolution launched a dramatic acceleration of economic activity - many simply call it "progress" - which has continued to pick up pace unchecked ever since. This tsunami of activity has resulted in major change in virtually every area of life, at least in developed or developing countries and area.

Over the course of my lifetime alone we've seen massive change in occupations, workforces, demographics, immigration, political lines, economic fundamentals, entertainment, consumer habits, media, education, healthcare, science, culture - the list is endless. 

We've lived with the pace of change for so long that we do not often regard its byproducts as unusual, just signs of "progress", even when some aspects of change are indeed radical (and often poorly thought out).

While not all change needs to be contemplated, studied, guided or fought, there are times when governments of the day have, knowingly or not,abdicated their responsibility to be good stewards.

Like all big waves, the tsunami of economic activity driven change is going to crest and break at some point; the co-joined issues of energy availability and climatic impact of fossil fuel use are in my mind the two primary issues which will come to haunt us all within my lifetime, certainly within my children's.

Proactive measures could be / ought to be taken, and by my definition, a cautious approach to how we handle these looming future challenges would be completely conservative in nature.

Doing nothing, under the guise of being "conservative", is actually quite a radical policy choice.