Thursday, May 20, 2010

Daily Digest May 20, 2010



Dirty little secrets

Hazards of a wired world

Let's make a deal

Let's get a look

Protecting Sable Island

One standard of justice

Walking a fine line between financial flexibility and fraud

Open the books on expenses

Debt monster's threat Increases

Liberals see the light
Mine firms must be good citizens

Making it worse

Time for Mr. Toews to share

Marci McDonald's biggest blunder

 Excellence, not 'equity'

 A comedy of errors

Brainless thugs all about mayhem

For Ontario, Liberal or Tory no different

Parliament's audit denial totally nuts

Harper can't seem to resist deception

Queen's Park must end transit silence

McGuinty has fumbled Ombudsman appointment

Random breath tests Good advice from legal community

Best chance for Vale Inco-USW settlement may be approaching

Water, water everywhere

MPs' spending

EU should open door to Turkey

G8, G20, gee whiz

Snail-mail pace killing digital future

Robin Hood as Tea Partier

You still on Facebook? Why?

Draw a line at drawing the Prophet

Religious right is back in the spotlight

Care home deal scary reminder of bad old days
Historic records belong to people

Judge delivers his verdict: reform human rights file

Burying the hatchet

Shutting AG out of books a bad plan for Parliament

Driving isn't like junk food
Don't forget undergraduates

Canadians deserve end-of-life choice    

B.C. Liberals more concerned about coverups than children

Site C dam is only the start for electric cars
Editorial: BCTF is to blame for teacher-college woes


Quebec sovereignty debate not dead, Charest warns

Court triumph turns sour for Tories

Harper to 'recommend' defeat of Tory MP's abortion bill

Liberals maybe backtracking on AG request
MPs should meet with Fraser, Ignatieff says

Secretive MP panel open to ideas on further MP audits

Tories surge with Liberals 'mired in unimaginable depths'

The pressure is on Ignatieff to stop Liberal freefall

Can this Liberal leader be saved?

Michael Ignatieff concedes rivals have 'done a number' on him

Tories near 10-point lead over Liberals: poll

Wells: Mind the gap? I bet Peter Donolo does: Attempting to explain the "sideways Ekos V"

O'Malley: EKOS of the Week: And the gap becomes a chasm!

The Tories risk all on narrow appeal and wedge issues

Liberals' move to break ranks on expense audit is no surprise


Ruffling Jim Prentice's climate change feathers

Canada ranks poorly in climate report The

Harper's message leaves nothing to chance

The Tories risk all on narrow appeal and wedge issues
Commissaire à l'éthique · Guergis à l'amende pour une hypothèque

Réputation du Canada · Cannon s'attaque à Duceppe

Référendum de 1980 · «À la prochaine fois»: 30 ans plus tard

Voile | Controverse · Le projet de loi 94 crée de l'agitation

Dépenses électorales: plusieurs ministres conservateurs blâmés



Subject:  Now is the time for leadership not petty politics
From:    Mike Duffy <>
Date:    Wed, May 19, 2010 2:28 pm

Canadians will be faced soon enough with a choice between a proven leader
in Prime Minister Stephen Harper and a visiting professor in Michael
Ignatieff, between a low tax plan and the high-tax agenda of the Liberals,
and between a strong national Conservative government and a weak, reckless
coalition made up of the Liberals, NDP, and Bloc. But for now, let's
make sure that we make the most of the next few months leading up to the
G20 and G8 summits where the Harper Government will play a strategic role
in furthering financial security and world health. Now is the time for
leadership not petty politics from the Liberals, the NDP and the Bloc

We have strong leadership, we have the results and we have the numbers.

Thanks for your time.


Mike Duffy
E-mail your response to Senator Michael Duffy either @ or
and, of course, to the CANADIAN/DAILY/DIGEST <>


From: Larry Kazdan
Subject: Letter to Editor re:  Harper goes global to control agenda of G20 summit in Toronto, Les Whittington,  May 18 2010

Re:  Harper goes global to control agenda of G20 summit in Toronto, Les Whittington,  May 18 2010 

Could it be any clearer?  Stephen Harper fans out his ministers around the world, not to fight poverty, not to fight climate change, but to protect the banks from a measly .05% transaction tax that could raise money to assist the most vulnerable.  Stephen Harper definitely has a compassionate side.  Unfortunately for most Canadians, that side is reserved for hedge funds, and not for ordinary people.
From: John Kruithof
Subject: Auditing MPs and Senators

The May 19 Ottawa Sun published my LTE.  It's at
For convenience, the text is:

Financial scrutiny
Re: “What are MPs, Senators hiding?” (May 17). When MPs and senators exhibit self interest in not allowing Auditor General Sheila Fraser to audit their books, MPs at least cannot be seriously interested in re-election. Next federal election, I will not vote for a candidate unwilling to let a publicly supported auditor check their spending habits. I’ve informed my MP accordingly. MPs and senators must be held accountable, like everyone else. I hope voters will not support candidates who refuse to submit to independent financial scrutiny.
John Kruithof

As is its custom, the Sun added its comment:
(MPs seem to think differently when it comes to what accountability means)
From: "Peter Robertson"

                So M.P.'s do not want to reveal their expense accounts or have them audited by the Auditor-General.  So much for openness and transparency in this government.
Peter Robertson.

From: John Halonen

I fail to see how an audit on MP expenses will be forthcoming when they ( the government ) 
do not wish to be audited themselves.

John Halonen

From: Ron Thornton

Hi Joe:

Well, it appears I have a few opinions after all, as the May 19 Digest has uncovered. For example, the Star's item on the safe distance between autos and bicycles reminded me that bicycles are a pedestrian form of transportation and should not be used on heavily used roads in the first place.  I'm busy watching the things that can kill me out there, and a cyclists who is a vehicle one second and riding the crosswalks the next isn't one of those things. Where the speeds and traffic volume are lighter, by all means share the road. Where it is not, cyclists either should ride on the sidewalk or have their own dedicated lane. It is a simple matter of safety.

The Sun's Mindelle Jacobs tells us pro-life folks should just accept that they lost the battle over abortion. I find the comment sanctimonious bullshit. Life is life, no matter how one wants to sweep it from their conscience. That said, the pro-life folks would have a lot more credibility if they could guarantee that every unwanted child could find a loving home, that every pregnant woman is offered loving support for them and their unborn child. But they can not and do not. This isn't an easy issue to debate, if we are honest with ourselves. Does abortion involved taking a human life? Certainly it does, but I can empathize with those faced in making such a decision due to how the child was conceived, if it takes place early or late in life, where the woman's health is at risk, or will mean crippling hardship due to financial considerations. It would be a choice I would not wish to be faced with. I do not support abortion on demand, but I can easily imagine conditions in the reality of this world where, God forgive me, I would be hard pressed not to see it as an acceptable option.

As for Quebec banning the burka, I think it is about time Canadians determine what is acceptable and what is not in their society. Every society in the world makes such determinations, so why don't we? The practices of another land or another culture does not necessarily fit in our own, just as some of our own practices would be unacceptable in other areas of the world. It is time we grow a pair and decide who we are, what we stand for, and what we accept and what we do not.

Thanks for the use of the hall again, Joe.

Ron Thornton

From: "Ian Hamilton"
Subject: Fw: What to take to bed with you - not a joke
> Tell your spouse, your children, your neighbors, your parents, your Dr's office, the check-out girl at the market, everyone you run across. Put your car keys
> beside your bed at night.
> If you hear a noise outside your home or someone trying to get in your house,  just press the panic button for your car. The alarm will be set off, and the horn will continue to sound until either you turn it off or the car battery dies.
> This tip came from a neighborhood watch coordinator. Next time you come home for the night and you start to put your keys away, think of this:
> It's a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation.
> Test it.
> It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain....
> It works if you park in your driveway or garage. If your car alarm goes off when  someone is trying to break into your house, odds are the burglar/rapist won't stick around.
> After a few seconds all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won't want that.
> And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot.  The alarm can work the same way there.
> This is something that should really be shared with everyone. Maybe it could save a life or a sexual abuse crime.
> P.S. I am sending this to everyone I know because I think it is fantastic.
Would also be useful for any emergency, such as a heart attack, where you can't reach a phone. My Mom has suggested to my Dad that he carry his car keys with him in case
> he falls outside and she doesn't hear him. He can activate the car alarm and then she'll know there's a problem.
> Please pass this on even IF you've read it before.

> It's a reminder.

Good to know something that at ttimes is embarrassing has a use, eh?
From: Anthony Silvestro
Subject: Letter to the editor, Re - The budget

Letter to the editor,
What a joke this country has become. We now have over 3.5 million people working for government across the country. Just sickening! Average salary in government is about 70 thousand yearly and rising. Average salary in the private sector is around 45 thousand yearly and dropping. Over 10% of government employees now make over 100 thousand yearly. In the private sector the number is under 2 %. Nice eh? Look to Greece and Quebec, this is where Canada is headed if we don't stop equalization and get spending and government growth under control. This tax and spend, union, socialist, big government, social engineering that has be destroying this country has got to stop. Yes, it has left Quebec and has been spreading throughout the rest of the country since the 1970"s. Thanks Trudeau.
The Liberals and Conservatives have spent the last few decades destroying Ontario and Canada's economy, its English speaking history and culture, with high taxes, high salaries, big government, social engineering - expensive forced bilingual and multicultural policies (only outside Quebec of course), unions controlling just about everything, new programs and new departments yearly, the size and growth of government and salaries have been out of control for decades with no end in sight. Lie after lie, spin, propaganda from politicians and all government officials on a daily basis, scandals, corruption, billions of dollars being wasted on all sorts of socialist nonsense, again with no end in sight.
All governments are heavily in debt, the HST, tax after tax after user fee again with no end in sight - The Conservatives response to any of this, silence as usual? No such thing as a fiscally conservative, common sense party anywhere in this country. What Liberal policies will the Tories repeal, what programs will they eliminate, what taxes will they reduce, what waste will they cut...? No response as usual. Liberal, Tory same old stories, both are destroying Canada. We need a new party ASAP. The entire system needs to be overhauled ASAP.
Anthony Silvestro,
Ottawa, Ont

From: "Brian D. Marlatt"
Subject: The Queen's tour: Canada Day address, off to the races, a royal visit to RIM - The Globe and Mail
Subject: Peace Arch News - EDITORIAL: Proposal worth considering

A proposal by a backbench Conservative MP in Ottawa is one the general public – and MPs of all parties – should embrace.

Ontario MP Michael Chong has proposed a motion that goes into some detail about how to make Question Period in the House of Commons more relevant and, most importantly, far more civil and respectful of cabinet ministers' time.

It's a proposal that will resonate with every Canadian who has ever watched the absurdity that Question Period has become.

While based on the Prime Minister's Questions period in British Parliament – historically acrimonious, but, surprisingly, only a 50-year tradition as a scheduled weekly occurrence – the Canadian Question Period veers into chaos all the more because it has been established as a daily practice, one which puts all ministers, and not just the Prime Minister, in the hot seat.

It has become that point in every parliamentary day where MPs do their best to pose embarrassing questions to ministers. This, in itself, is not bad ­ ministers should, after all, be accountable for their departments.

But the whole exercise is theatre, complete with shouting, catcalls and a total lack of decorum from MPs on all sides. It's a grandstanding travesty that has been encouraged by both adept questioner and nimble questionee alike, and particularly since proceedings became televised.

Failing an unlikely return to the British way of doing things, Chong's proposals would probably result in the greatest improvement of Question Period since the Canadian rules were first established in 1964 .

He has proposed that the time allotted for questions be longer ­ up to 90 seconds, almost three times the current 35-second limit. He has also suggested specific ministers be prepared to field questions on specific days, so most members of cabinet don't have to spend up to 3½ hours per day away from other important more duties, simply prepping for any questions that may be asked.

Amongst many other proposals, Chong suggests backbench MPs be recognized by the Speaker – once far more powerful in determining in the form of proceedings – to pose questions, rather than simply be placed on a list by party house leaders. This would make Question Period far more democratic, and allow MPs to pose questions more relevant to their constituents than the partisan actions of house leaders out to either embarrass or defend the government.

The main point of government should be to get things done, and any reform of Question Period that would make it more than just a theatrical performance would be a big step forward.

Subject: Re: NASA Chief urges Norway to pull out of Alberta's 'destructive' oilsands.
From: Rene Moreau
To: Sandra Finley

To Sandra
From Rene Moreau (416-489-8347)
re; Tarsands
   Is it possible that taxpayers of Canada are somehow paying for the developing of the tarsands. In any situation where one cannot figure out the reason for such devastation, the phrase comes back 'follow the money'. Who pays for all the gas and resources needed at the tarsands site? If 'small nuclear' is used, who will pay for it?

   Will it be us taxpayers of Canada, through the largess of Industry Canada, or Export Development Canada which are currently being used as a 'Cash Cow by corporate internationally. Remember, Tony Clement is the minister of  Industry and that is very significant!

   One of the reasons for corporate putting their own people into  our government is to be able to facilitate the direction of  taxpayers' money to THEIR CAUSES.
   They also put their people in to the media  and any  resistance to their wishes,to undermine the opposition to their flim flams, as I have said before.

                                                                          Rene Moreau (416-489-8347)
From: Sandra Finley
Subject: NASA Chief urges Norway to pull out of Alberta's 'destructive' oilsands.

People around the world determined to put the brakes on climate change in whatever way they can.   Making opportunities to stop the tar sands.
Many different manifestations and motivations, but all contribute to the same end.
Ideally I would put the newspaper article below together with:  the announcement by the Premier of Saskatchewan, Brad Wall, that Saskatchewan is going ahead with the development of "small" nuclear reactors.  The reactors are for tar sands expansion.

The people in Saskatchewan must mount another huge effort to stop the nuclear agenda.   My words seem incredulous, even to myself:  we are in a life-and-death struggle.  These people are intent upon destroying what we have.  They choose money over life.  Wilful ignorance and denial.  /Sandra
Statoil's Annual General Meeting will be held tomorrow in Stavanger, Norway. I will have the opportunity to address Statoil's Executive, Board of Directors and Shareholders. A coalition of ENGO's and First Nations have taken out a full page ad in a local Norwegian newspaper by Dr James Hansen, a prominent climate scientist and head of NASA calling on the Norwegian government to pull out of the tarsands.

The English version of the advertisement is here:

Also below is a Canadian Press news article about the ad and Statoil's Annual General Meeting by Bob Weber.

From Bob Weber, The Canadian Press, May 19, 2010 - 00:50 a.m.
NASA scientist urges Norway to pull out of Alberta's 'destructive' oilsands
By Bob Weber, The Canadian Press

From: The Natroses

Hi Joe,  I believe that non-budget items should not lead to an election. That said, I believe the inclusion  of non-budget items within a budget bill, may be necessary to the sitting government of the day.

Debate is rarely happening in the House of Commons that is non-partisan in nature. Our MPs always seem to be playing on an angle, that may or may not be necessarily good for the citizens, and the welfare of the country.  Our politicians rather get one-up on each other, than debate issues that should have been debated a long time ago. Issues that have been allowed to simmer and broil, rather than being tackled.  Issues that needed to be looked at through the long-term lens, rather than the short-term lens of what looks good in terms of popularity.

Thus, in Bill C-9, there is a variety of non-budget items. Items that have been allowed to festered to become political and economic problems for the country. I dare say, it is a lack of foresight on the part of the MPs,  common sense, and a willful defiance on ignoring the needs of Canadians, in favour of working for their best interests, which always seems to be political in nature.

Partial deregulation of the postal service within Bill C-9, is an example of an issue that has been allowed to festered in Canada. Canada Post, over the years, rising postal service rates and their monopoly on the mail services. Someone in Toronto, may not think it is a big deal, unless one talks to a small retailer,  or a small manufacturer; than you will hear how postal rates cost them big money. Someone in Toronto, who is sending a parcel or even a letter by express into the rural parts of Canada, or to another big city in another province, could tell a person, how much it does cost, and even than, Postal Canada will not guarantee that it will be delivered in so many days. In Canada Post Rates Rant, written in 2006, may as well be written in 2010, with changes made to the rates that are now higher and still climbing.

In the Globe and Mail: " Going postal - A section related to Canada Post overturns several court rulings that went in the Crown corporation's favour and ends its monopoly on the collection of mail with destinations outside Canada. The Canadian Union of Postal Workers warned the House finance committee that the move, first introduced as a stand-alone bill in 2007, will undercut the ability to finance rural mail delivery."

Undercut rural mail delivery service????  More likely, the union is worried about the layoffs, where most if not all will take advantage of much reduced rates for within and outside of Canada.  As for undercutting rural mail service, service is of questioning value and if indeed Canada Post valued their monopoly in rural Canada, in the last 20 years.

This item, among many, should never have had to be in the budget. But it is, because we have politicians unwilling to debate, discuss, and hash out in the House of Commons, the long term consequences of their actions, that may impact Canadians, and the economy of Canada.

From: Rebecca Gingrich
Subject:  discretionary power being given to the Minister of the day to approve impediments to navigation of waterways were included in Bill C-10

Joe--re  waterways--the feds already control all waterways in Canada.  Below is an excerpt from a Saskatchewan SARM meeting.  I remember the municipal Sask. government was forbidden from putting in a drain under a highway because it would control flowing water!!!  This was instituted by the Liberal government when they put ALL navigable waterways under the control of Fisheries and Oceans, with the definition of 'navigable' being a Liberal option.
Me thinks they will use any means to throw mud on each other while ignoring what they all have already done. 
BTW--I have not met one person that gives a damn what is happening re the Guergis/Jaffer idiocy.  But every one of the people I have talked to are angry about the MP expenses being hidden.
I would like to bring to your attention one resolution which was passed at the most recent FCM Board meeting which could help us significantly. This resolution was submitted by the AAMD&C and asks the federal government to publish guidelines on which waterways are definitely non-navigable. As you are all aware, Fisheries and Oceans Canada have created a lot of concern for municipalities. Our major concern up until recently has been with regard to fish habitat. Now we find there is another piece of federal legislation that is equally troublesome, which falls under the "Navigable Waters Protection Act". The definition of navigable is very loose and open to liberal interpretation.

Subject: Ottawa bank explosion false flag??  troops on the streets???

Subject: Lenin foretold our world today?
Did Vladimir Lenin Predict The Banking Disaster Of 2008?

"Imperialism the Highest Stage of Capitalism"
By V. I. Lenin
LCW vol.22,

Lenin enumerated the following five features characteristic of the epoch of imperialism:

The epoch of imperialism opens when the expansion of colonialism has covered the globe and no new colonies can be acquired by the great powers except by taking them from each other, and the concentration of capital has grown to a point where finance capital becomes dominant over industrial capital. Lenin enumerated the following five features characteristic of the epoch of imperialism:

(1) the concentration of production and capital has developed to such a high stage that it has created monopolies which play a decisive role in economic life;
(2) the merging of bank capital with industrial capital, and the creation on the basis of this "finance capital", of a financial oligarchy;
(3) the export of capital as distinguished from the export of commodities acquires exceptional importance;
(4) the formation of international monopoly capitalist associations which share the world among themselves, and
(5) the territorial division of the whole world among the biggest capitalist powers is completed. Imperialism is capitalism at that stage of development at which the dominance of monopolies and finance capital is established; in which the export of capital has acquired pronounced importance; in which the division of the world among the international trusts has begun, in which the division of all territories of the globe among the biggest capitalist powers has been completed. [Lenin, Imperialism the Highest Stage of Capitalism, LCW Volume 22, p. 266-7.]