Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Daily Digest March 26, 2008



Living in debt View

Seal hunt starting again

Some federal cash to fix a bad odour

Deadly serious

RCMP fails on Taser data

Something really worth studying

Confidential sources are essential

The cost of failure

Budget avoids money madness

Taking Guergis off Martin case the right move

A sound budget for tough times

China drops the ball

Fight we shall

No money left for hard times

Good choices for hard times

Cautious budget for a cautious time

Duncan delivers budget ... and a swift kick to Flaherty

Down, Jim, down

The budget

Politics and Martin; Canadian prisoner in Mexico strangely partisan in her attacks

Taser data worrisome

Fix in, not made

Right to protect sources' identity vital to free press

Counting our blessings we stayed out of Iraq

Press freedom threatened

No safe haven for U.S. deserters

Taser stats alarming
Is weapon becoming too much of a go-to tool?

RCMP loves both Tasers and secrets

A new chill on the news

Talking points
Thanks to the Conservatives, now anyone can talk just like a real Tory.

Governments falling short defending press freedom

Happy Birthday to the paper that's served us so well for 110 years

Protected sources and a free press

All Hans on deck in Tibet
China desperately needs to make Tibetans their ethnic minority.


U.S. praises Canucks for securing Kandahar

Military agreement ignored by media

Railways gouging farmers for grain transport, groups charge
Wheat Board study argues that CN, CP have taken more than $100-million annually in 'excessive returns'

Ontario manufacturing ills spreading

Rising prices make crops tempting target for thieves

Same game, new rules in Afghanistan

Taliban again threatens spring offensive

Military tells Bush of troop strains;_ylt=AjMZhkW8a_I8m1L0z1YfJDes0NUE

Afghan ambassador sees mission success by 2011

Army Reaches 70,000 Mark, As Taliban Vows New Offensive

Troops to stay in Afganistan until 2012: U.S. general
Reduction in numbers could happen if local forces are ready

Uphill battle to train local police in Afghanistan

Sarkozy pledges more troops for Afghanistan

Canadians 'doing the whole job' in Kandahar

UN meeting rejects recognition of water as basic human right

A case built on lies
Newly released documents show that Omar Khadr likely never killed anyone. So why isn't Ottawa doing anything to bring him home?

Ottawa fights Khadr ruling
Supreme Court justices pepper government lawyer with questions

Bill would transform immigration

McGuinty warns feds not to shut out less-skilled immigrants

Harper Tories take fresh shot at Ontario

McGuinty tells feds to stop attacking Ont. policies

Harper-McGuinty feud puts strain on federation

Ontario doesn't bite on corporate tax cut
Instead it offers a host of smaller measures to struggling manufacturing sector

The Anti-Liberal Party of Canada

Even in bad times, Liberals spend big

Two strategies, but will either one be enough?

McGuinty banks on education over tax cuts

Spending boost for hard times ahead

Retail sales up, EI claims down
Sask. Party puts positive spin on economic news

B.C. sales figures rank dead last among provinces
One economist suggests January figures will only be a blip

Ready for a Slump?
As BC's economy cools, how well are we prepared?

Dion's dilemma

Men just don't like Dion: poll

Tories like Dion the way he is

Quebec MP challenges Dion

Dion unruffled by party unrest

Liberals scoff at 'totally nuts' reports of Quebec revolt against Dion

Stéphane Dion, an accidental king with no standing in his own province

Only a centre-left 'common front' can beat Harper

Federal Tories firm up Alberta lineup

Ottawa's attempts to blame Ontario for fiscal woes isn't winning votes: experts

For Tories, better the Dion they know
Coming byelections could spell out fate of Liberal leader

Harper not just blowing smoke

NDP, Greens join sub contract battle

Global warming causing stronger allergies

FOOD WAR: Grain Prices Soar Globally Leading To Food Riots

Indian minister attacks biofuels
Indian Finance Minister P Chidambaram has said that it is "outrageous"
that developed countries are turning food crops into bio fuels

Biofuels 'will not lead to hunger'

An unequal, punitive consumption tax

Terror schemes exaggerated, lawyer says

Alleged participant at 'terrorist camp' told it was winter camping trip: factum

New details emerge in Ontario terror case

Defence in Toronto bomb plot case counters claims of terror training

In the Arctic, you can't go back to the future

Justice a la carte

Seven everyday graces for a sin-obsessed world


Taser: la GRC justifie la censure de ses rapports

Destituer Dion n'est pas une «idée sérieuse»

Duceppe souhaite voir les surplus placés dans une fiducie

Le gros de l'aide à l'Afghanistan gaspillé en salaires

Les avocats de Khadr disent que le Canada et les E.-U. ont violé ses droits

Un accusé de complot terroriste à Toronto croyait se rendre à un camp d'hiver

L'ambassadeur d'Afghanistan croit que le Canada dispose encore de trois ans

Les conservateurs récidivent contre l'Ontario, parlant de caisse occulte

NB: le fédéral verse 8,8 millions $ pour le recrutement des policiers

Nouvelle torpille contre Stéphane Dion

Les libéraux fédéraux au Québec se déchirent sur la place publique - Dion lance un appel au calme

Ce que tout bon militant conservateur doit dire

l'Ontario ignore Ottawa


U.S. and NATO military officials dismiss the idea of a Taliban spring offensive and say
the only offensive that will take place this year is one by Western and Afghan troops.

        Those whose sources of information are limited would read what U.S. and NATO military officials say.  It's our side that will be the spear carriers this spring.

        The insurgents will not stand and fight in large numbers.  Would you if the other side had air power at its disposal?

        What would you do in the situation you found yourself in?

        Now planes, helicopters, tanks, armoured cars all have one common weakness, don't they?

        Read the excerpts below and you'll see the strategy being put to tactical effect.

        And one more thing, who do you think is more likely to be more apt to be telling things as they are? The "military officials" or the Joint Chiefs ?


the Taliban, according to Asia Times Online contacts, will open new fronts in Khyber Agency in Pakistan and Nangarhar province in east Afghanistan and its capital Jalalabad. the historic belt starting from Peshawar in North-West Frontier Province and running through Khyber Agency to Nangarhar is NATO's life line - 80% of its supplies pass through it. From Nangarhar, the capital Kabul is only six hours away by road.

Some 40 road tankers supplying fuel to American troops in Afghanistan have been destroyed by suspected pro-Taleban militants on the border with Pakistan.
The attacks, at the Pakistani border crossing point of Torkham,

Torkham is a border crossing town in the Nangarhar province of Afghanistan and the Khyber Agency of Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas, right on the Durand Line border. [1] It is linked by a highway with Jalalabad to the west, Peshawar to the east, and is linked the N-5 National Highway to Karachi - the town is only five kilometres west of the summit of the Khyber Pass. Torkham is the busiest port of entry between Afghanistan and Pakistan. It is also a major transporting, shipping, and receiving site between the two neighboring countries.

The Joint Chiefs are particularly concerned about Afghanistan and an increasingly active Taliban insurgency.;_ylt=AjMZhkW8a_I8m1L0z1YfJDes0NUE


From: "Andy Rutherford" <>
Subject: SPP

The history of Canada is full of the struggle to create and maintain
an east west flow of trade in order to have a country. The building
of the CNR and CPR railroads was to effect that unification of the
country as a country in order to prevent the more natural geographic
pull of north south trade.  The forefathers of Canada, the people who
were loyal to Canada  and believed in the merits of  a sovereign
Canada, knew the east west trade route was a never ending struggle.
Current political leaders know that to abandon the protection of our
east west trade flow means the end of Canada. That is their goal.
That is why they permitted the selloff of our two national railroads
that ran east and west keeping Canada connected in all its
parts   .They no longer care if a Canada, sovereign, free and
independent, exists. Indeed, their actions suggest that they want
it dead. NAFTA was a white wash,the low dollar value was the only
factor in North South trade and where did all the trade go when the
dollar value rose. About the only thing that we Sell South is energy
 and what is left of our coporations.
From: "Jacob Rempel"
Subject: "...We can't end up being there without one helluva fight!"
To the Editor, DAILY DIGEST
You write:
"The SPP is real and must be brought into the light.
We can't end up being there without one helluva fight!"
Joe, you and a thousand others should have joined us at the PC Party leadership
conventions when we nominated and voted for David Orchard for leader. Martin
and company might never have met in Waco Texas to sign the wacky SPP.
I hate to say "I told you so!"  Best Wishes
…Jacob Rempel

(How were we to know he who promised no merger would turn out to be a mendacious betrayer?)
From: "Rebecca Gingrich"
Subject: SPP. Tibet and One World 'government

Joe--I have thought from the first blow that there was something that didn't pass the smell test of the tibet uprising.
This is one journalists opinion.  Don't know if I agree with his words, but he is probably on the right track.
As the world becomes a corporate-driven entity this becomes more plausible.

From: "Rosalie Piccioni"
Subject: 1 of the jokes can be told in church

An elderly woman died last month. Having never married,
she requested no male pallbearers. In her handwritten
instructions for her memorial service, she wrote,
"They wouldn't take me out while I was alive, I
don't want them to take me out when I'm dead."

From: "R. Gagne"


I read with interest the article from the Lethbridge Herald regarding the delivery of political messages by out-of constituency MP's.

I've had the same problem for months. Somehow or other, NDP leader Jack Layton's office in Ottawa has been sending me unsolicited
junk mail. For the life of me, I can't understand why Taliban Jack has taken such a liking to me.


From: "Claudia Hudson"
Subject: Will Canadians wake up, PLEASE?

From: "Rebecca Gingrich"
Subject: Higher energy costs?

This article makes me sick. The other day I was going throught my filing
cabinet. I found a glossy sheet of paper that the CA had sent out. It
states 'Kyoto is a scam', 'Say NO to Kyoto', 'How will I be
affected--NEGATIVELY', 'Will Kyoto work? No., 'Will our economy survive?
No one knows'--and on and on. It shows pictures of 'Kyoto's
Victims--Seniors, Workers, Public Transit Fares, and Families paying more
for groceries and fuel!' It is undated but we are supposed to contact
Harper, Leader of the Opposition and has the Canadian Alliance symbol on it.

So what we have here is a complete reversal of what we were told by Harper
et al. And OUR energy prices will increase? Perhaps if we let GW happen we
would be using less energy?


From: "Jacob Rempel"
To: <>
Cc: "GianCairo" <>,
         "MP:StephaneDionLiberalPartyLeader" <>
Subject: Benefits of NAFTA

My comments below the Angus Reid poll results
…Jacob Rempel, Vancouver
Canadians Feel U.S. Has Benefited the Most
from the NAFTA; Two-in-five Would Renegotiate
The majority of respondents want to stay in the trade agreement,
whether under current terms or after a renegotiation
Fourteen years after Canada, the United States and Mexico
formed the world's largest free trade area, the majority of
Canadians think their country has not greatly benefited from
the pact. In an Angus Reid Strategies online survey of a national
representative sample, 51 per cent of respondents think the
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has mostly
benefited the United States, while 22 per cent think the accord
has been better for Mexico. Only eight per cent of respondents
think Canada has secured the most positive results out of the
three countries from being a NAFTA partner.
Click here to read more
Dear Angus Reid:
I have generally well-informed layman opinions
about NAFTA benefits, and write a few comments
about NAFTA benefits which are the subject of
the AngusReid opinion poll noted above.
The opinion poll avoids critical questions about benefits
for Canadians. The simple question about benefits for
"all" Canada makes the poll respondents recall the usual
pro-NAFTA macro-information about massive increase
in cross border trade in Canada's favour, much of which
is an increase in oil exports which would have happened
anyway, and an increase in sale of auto parts, etc., which
was really a result of lower values of the Canadian dollar.
Certain people such as investors and senior employees
in  certain resource and manufacturing industries may
well have benefited in Canada and in the United States.
However, I question whether wage incomes of factory
and service workers, incomes of small businesses and
family farms have improved, and levels of funding for
schools, health services, social programs, community
amenities and other public services have benefited from
FTA/NAFTA in either country.
I'm certain that in answer to these questions, well-
informed opinion has a negative evaluation of the
benefits of NAFTA and related policies for most
Canadians, as distinct from the smaller number
of Canadians involved in certain large investments.
And of course Angus Reid  never asked about the negatives
of losing independence in domestic and foreign policy as a
result of the NAFTA and related deeper integration trends.
We have signed away control of energy and other natural
resources, and our independence to shift industry into
more sustainable and less wasteful product priorities.
As well, Canada is now deeply involved in military
industry and even war on behalf of USA foreign policy and
their war industry. This is not a benefit for Canada either. 
As well, NAFTA has hurt Canada with the loss of major
corporation head offices and R&D as FIRA became in-
operative, and crown corporations were privatized. NAFTA
came in con-currently with a general ideological shift against
public services and public ownership and regulation to favour
mega-corporation ownership and political influence as
political economic doctrines shifted away from John Keynes
and John Kenneth Galbraith to Friedrick Hayek and Milton
Freidman as the gurus for corporate and government elites.
I hope that opinion pollsters will explore economic and
political realities in more significant detail. The single
macro economic statistic about increased trade, quoted
endlessly by Tom D'Aquino and his CEO buddies and
their acolytes, just does not cut it with me. Never did.
P.S. Now the "Security and Prosperity Partnership" 
        is consolidating a deeper continental integration 
        of the Canada-USA military/industrial/cultural
        political economy. Has the eagle landed and nested?
…Jacob Rempel, Vancouver
Canadians Feel U.S. Has Benefited the Most
from the NAFTA; Two-in-five Would Renegotiate
The majority of respondents want to stay in the trade agreement,
whether under current terms or after a renegotiation
Fourteen years after Canada, the United States and Mexico
formed the world's largest free trade area, the majority of
Canadians think their country has not greatly benefited from
the pact. In an Angus Reid Strategies online survey of a national
representative sample, 51 per cent of respondents think the
North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) has mostly
benefited the United States, while 22 per cent think the accord
has been better for Mexico. Only eight per cent of respondents
think Canada has secured the most positive results out of the
three countries from being a NAFTA partner.
Click here to read more