Thursday, March 06, 2008

Daily Digest March 6, 2008



ST.JOHN'S TELEGRAM - What's going on next door

MONTREAL GAZETTE - Good news is no news

OTTAWA CITIZEN - Nuclear options

        The state is no arbiter of taste

        Moses, what a dude

PETERBOTOUGH EXAMINER - Politics with a 'pee'

TORONTO STAR - Why is the NDP against a probe?

        Canada vs. Obama

NATIONAL POST - The abstention party

TORONTO SUN - Harper must put leash on Flaherty

K-W RECORD - Don't limit child care

SASKATOON STARPHOENIX - Canada needs more evidence than PM's eyes

CALGARY HERALD - Too many questions about Cadman affair

GRANDE PRAIRIE DAILY HERALD TRIBUNE - Sleeping with the elephant
Beware the U.S. economy's fallout on us

EDMONTON JOURNAL - New law boosts daddy-state morals

LETHBRIDGE HERALD - In the end, the consumer winds up paying

PRINCE GEORGE CITIZEN - Aboriginal elementary school a welcome change

         Another side of Harper

SOUTH ASIAN POST - Why is Chuck Cadman being called a liar?

VANCOUVER SUN - Greater vigilance is needed to protect patients from crime


Six Nations demanding fees for consultation on development: official

 A thaw in relations
There is room to negotiate between the U.S. and Canadian positions on the Northwest Passage

Canada has much at stake in U.S. vote

U.S. senator wants more action on Canada lumber spat

NAFTA's legacy: worst agreement we've signed

Tories blamed for Obama leak

Maybe Obama's free-trade talk is serious


Canada's NAFTA leak is regrettable: U.S. envoy

Can Canada think itself to success?

Canada's new role in Russia

NATO foreign ministers approve new Afghan plan

Afghanistan, Balkans dominate NATO meeting

Canada will get troop reinforcements, U.K. minister says

U.S. urges support for Canada in Afghan south

Key Afghan district slow to recover despite 2-year Canadian security effort

Reading your way to better health

Ban on junk food ads backed
Halt to marketing ploys aimed at kids a necessary response to child obesity crisis, medical panel says

Aiding Canadians who face death penalty now more complicated

Activists demand trustee's resignation
Social activists in an Eastern Ontario community yesterday demanded the resignation of school trustee Gordon Gilchrist, a former Conservative MP, over a letter he wrote to a local paper calling on voters to tell politicians to "turn off the immigration tap before it's too late."

Multicultural cash divides us: Mayor

The intriguing spat between McGuinty and Flaherty

Crackdown on smokers harmless, McGuinty says

The brain drain of anglos from Quebec is getting serious
Just when Quebec needs all the talent it can get, the exodus is continuing

Sovereignists are experts in finding the worst
Good news for the French language is always played down

Supreme Court of Canada will hear appeal of Quebec language law

Tories' answer 'simply not credible'
Harper refuses to define 'financial considerations'

Liberals demand hearing into Cadman affair all 279 news articles »

Excerpts: Harper's response to the leak all 483 news articles »

Stephen Harper's responses to questions in the House of Commons about leaks relating to NAFTA and the policy position of presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Layton Takes NAFTA-Gate to CNN

PM must fire chief of staff: Opposition

Commission drops probe of Rosh Hashanah cards

Schreiber denied appeal

Canada abortion debate rekindled as bill passes

Commons passes private member's bill giving parents education tax break

Federal budget '08: Changes to the Millenium scholarship

Lip service being paid to environment: report

Not our job to show jails free of torture, Ottawa will argue
Seeks to dismiss request by rights group on behalf of Afghan detainees

Film `censor' debate goes to Senate
Liberals say they were `blindsided' by amendment quashing tax breaks for shows deemed offensive

Country's varied green laws could hurt investment, Flaherty says

Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate

Taxpayers should be as offended as Christians

Censorship foes asleep at the switch

'Bribe' furore raises question of where do we draw the line?

Censorship by tax credit

Why Harper's pinning hopes on Clinton

UN needs to chew on its drug policy

The cost of getting high: Tony Clement

How to fix it

Stacking the deck
The Tories' new crime law gives the state too much power

Car ban just latest phase of long fight

Former PM doesn't speak, doesn't vote
Aide says he's busy on projects; Stronach also keeps low profile

On Cadman and Obama, the PM is looking like a political amateur


La cour suprême entendra une cause sur le droit à l'école anglaise

Ottawa commande un rapport sur l'état des relations de travail au pays

Une remarque du chef de cabinet de Harper aurait lancé le scandale de l'ALENA

Fuites au sujet de l'ALENA et Obama: Harper annonce une enquête interne

Le gouvernement Harper reporte l'extradition de Karlheinz Schreiber

Harper nie formellement que le PC ait offert une assurance-vie à Chuck Cadman

Ottawa ne protège pas assez contre les produits toxiques, selon le Sénat

Pas d'exemption pour des raisons religieuses

Utilisation d'Internet
Les militaires priés de se limiter

Chambre des communes
Un autre test pour Harper

Harper refuse de préciser ses propos

Dans le placard de Josée Verner


From: Ron Thornton
Subject: Re: Daily Digest March 5, 2008

Hi Joe:

Just a quick comment regarding those who are wondering why only 40% of Albertans voted in the recent provincial election. The opposition leaders, who got their butts handed to them on a shingle, want answers. Well, truthfully, those boys can't handle the truth. To begin with, those very leaders are the reason Albertans voted overwhelmingly to continue the Progressive Conservative dynasty. Ed Stelmach might be bland, but if the alternative was to be an exciting, dynamic leader, then none of the others bothered to offer one. If it came down to character, well Stelmach had that in spades. In the end, the opposition failed to provide much incentive to vote for them, certainly failed to earn folks' trust, so most apparently stayed at home rather than bother to cast a ballot.

Of course, I also believe we have educated ourselves a generation of dummies. If you check out some of the miscues on the part of Elections Alberta, only dummies could come up with sending folks through two or three population centers in order for them to vote an hour away. Talking of dummies, people who don't vote should not. Hey, if in this information age you still haven't a clue who or what to vote for...well, you are a dummy. Take part in the election process? Tried it, and found that aside from attempting to gain myself some access, a little power, or a pay cheque, why would I waste my time working to support some guy who couldn't care less about my own dreams, just what he can get from me? I might vote for a dummy, but I'll be damned if I'll waste my time with them. Work to nominate a non-dummy candidate? You can, as long as the party does not insist on giving the nomination to, well, a dummy.

Now if that is the way I'm thinking, someone who actually finds the entire process fascinating, even though somewhat frustrating, it isn't hard to imagine others not so enthused to not be bothered.

In the words of the corporate world, many have become disengaged.

Ron Thornton

From: "Mark-Alan Whittle"
Subject: CadScam

Hi Joe,

Seems the she said, he said scandal surrounding Chuck Cadman has become the red herring of the century. If the thought of some insurance underwriter giving a life insurance policy to a man with terminal cancer sounds ridiculous it probably is. And all the statements attributed in the book, which I have read, are third party hearsay statements that would never stand up in court, or anywhere else for that matter. Even the author in an interview couldn't even corroborate the allegations other than to say that is what Mrs. Cadman told him and she wasn't in the room either. No doubt the conservatives would offer to help Cadman with an election since his riding association was broke and unable to finance a campaign. All other political party's including the Liberals bolster riding associations this way. And according to the author, nobody except his legislative assistant Dan Wallace was in the room with Cadman and the representatives from the conservatives so any information flowing from that is mere speculation, or a fabrication since Wallace refuses to say what was said. According to the author he deferred to Dona as to what was said. If anyone knows a first-hand account, instead of the heresy of others, it would be Dan Wallace and no other since Mr. Cadman is deceased. As to Mrs. Cadman running for the conservatives, good luck with that. Seems this whole scandal is designed to pump up book sales for the author and increase the dividend paid to the Cadman family for their unsubstantiated statements in the book. What I find most amusing is how the media ran with the story before getting all the facts. Now that down-right irresponsible journalism. Shameful.


"Oyate Witaya Waste"

Mark-Alan Whittle, C.E.O.

Street Advisor Consulting

From: "Rebecca Gingrich"
Subject: FW: Re: Sex films don't need(no damn) subsidies!

From: "Ivison, John (National Post)" <>
To: Rebecca Gingrich <>
Subject: Re: Sex films don't need(no damn) subsidies!
Date: Thu, 06 Mar 2008 14:29:56 -0500

Could I forward this to the Letters Editor for him to consider for

On 3/6/08 1:10 PM, "Rebecca Gingrich" <> wrote:

> John--why is the taxpayer expected to fund any film?  That to me is the
> disgusting part of this whole 'argument'.  Our healthcare system(?) is
> bankrupt, people are living on the streets, people cannot afford the drugs
> they are prescribed, no doctors, horrendous wait times for treatment, and we
> are expected to fund entertainment?
> Is this not the bread and circuses made famous by Rome?   By making this a
> Christian/non-Christian argument we are hiding the real issue--our tax
> dollars have more places to go than this.  Disgusting.
> becky


"The secret to success will be not imposing Western ideas and values," he said.

Joe--what a crock--what 'values' is he talking about?  You mean the values that we invade a country, bomb them back to the dark ages and then are surprised when they don't want our 'values'???  We have no values other than greed and power.  No matter the spin this 'war' is about oil and a pipeline.  Nothing more, nothing less.
No one has ever won over Afghanistan.  Too bad 80 Canadians have died to prove this point.  How many more have to die before our great leaders quit playing this deadly game and admit that we are wrong, we should not be there, and get the he** out?


From: Silver Donald Cameron
Subject: HH0751 O Canada!

Thought this might interest you.


SUNDAY HERALD COLUMN  December 30, 2007 (HH0751)


Silver Donald Cameron

I recently received a much-forwarded email exhorting me to SPEAK UP about a proposal that O Canada be sung in Hindi. One Bruce Allan had apparently spoken out against the proposal and got himself in deep doo-doo. The author of the message was in a patriotic froth.

"Enough is enough," s/he wrote. "No where or at no other time in our nation's history, did they sing it in Italian, Japanese, Polish, Irish (Celtic), German, Portuguese, Greek, or any other language because of immigration. It was written in English, adapted into co-founding French, and should be sung word for word the way it was written. The news broadcasts even gave the translation -- not even close."

Goodness me.

I flashed up Google. I believe, rather quaintly in this day of instant electronic outrage, that it's a good idea to know what you're talking about before you sound off.  So who had made the proposal, and in what circumstances?  Who was Bruce Allan (or Allen) and how had he drawn his line in the sand?

Bruce Allan proved to be an impresario who has been hired to produce the opening and closing ceremonies for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. He does regular commentaries on a private radio station. In September, he did one on immigrants.

Said Allan: "It seems more and more that we are being pilloried by special interest groups that just want to make special rules for themselves. This is easy to solve: these are the rules, there's the door. If you don't like the rules, hit it. We don't need you here. You have another place to go  it's called home. See ya."

 That provoked a storm of outrage from recent immigrants and from the politically-correct.   MP Raymond Chan complained to the CRTC. Allan subsequently claimed that his comments were pro-immigrant. If so, that was easy to miss.

But nothing in Allan's comments involved the singing of O Canada in Hindi, one of India's 20 official languages. I found no such proposal anywhere, though I did find a touching 2006 story  about a newly-composed anthem in praise of Canada by Pakistani-Canadian composer Sohail Rana  with lyrics apparently in Urdu.

The spectral Hindi version of O Canada is an odd episode  -- but the story of O Canada was always odd. It was first written in French, not English, for a "Congrès national des Canadiens-Français" in 1880. The Lieutenant Governor of Quebec, Hon. Théodore Robitaille, commissioned Judge Adolphe-Basile Routhier to write a hymn, which the well-known composer Calixa Lavallée would set to music.

That 1880 version of O Canada is still the only French version. No English version existed until 1906, when Dr. Thomas Bedford Richardson of Toronto translated Routhier's poem:

O Canada! Our fathers' land of old
Thy brow is crown'd with leaves of red and gold.
Beneath the shade of the Holy Cross
Thy children own their birth...

Two years later, Collier's Magazine ran a contest, won by one Mercy E. Powell McCulloch. Her version began:

O Canada! in praise of thee we sing;
From echoing hills our anthems proudly ring...

There were many other versions. Growing up in BC in the 1940s, I first learned a version composed by a Vancouver bank manager named Ewing Buchan:

O Canada, our heritage, our love
Thy worth we praise all other lands above...

All this time, O Canada was just a patriotic song, not an official national anthem. It was customarily sung  in one version or another  at the beginning of an event, followed by God Save The King at the end. Mackenzie King thought that was quite good enough. So did Louis St. Laurent.

Finally, in 1980, Parliament proclaimed O Canada our official national anthem. The English words chosen were a revision of the version written in 1908 by Montreal judge Robert Stanley Weir. In Parliament's version,  "From far and wide" replaced one of the three repetitions of  "We stand on guard." Senator Vivienne Poy later introduced legislation to revise the revision, changing "in all thy sons command" to "in all of us command."  The measure never passed,  but lots of people sing it that way anyway. 
If there are numerous English versions and a French one already, why shouldn't there be others? Maybe the Hindi version would begin, "O Canada, great Shiva's cold domain.." The natives could sing, "O Canada! Our truly native land!" The Gaelic version might start, "O Canada! Macdonald's whisky dream..."

The true Canadian tradition about O Canada is confusion. The wording still hasn't settled down, so most of us sing the first line or two and mumble the rest. And if the people beside us are equally proud of this wonderful, goofy country, but want to mumble in Turkish or Tagalog instead, why not? Just smile and keep singing. Civility and good humour are among the great Canadian virtues.

-- 30 --

Silver Donald Cameron
24 Armshore Drive, Halifax, NS  B3N 1M5

Newspaper columns/blog:


  • A Conversation with Stephen Harper [Rush Transcript; Federal News Service]

    Speaker: Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada Presider: Marie-Josée Kravis, Senior Fellow, The Hudson Institute September 25, 2007 Council on Foreign Relations