Wednesday, December 31, 2008 

Who Made Rona Ambrose Boss?

Rona Ambrose, Federal Labour Minister, and dull light of the Harper Cabinet, is trying to push her weight around in the Ottawa transit strike. Out of the blue, and at the request of Ottawa's wingy mayor, Ms. Ambrose has ORDERED the striking transit workers to a mandatory vote by January 9th, on the most recent offer that management placed on the table. HUH?! Who the hell does she think she is?

Here's hoping that the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 279 launch an immediate court action to challenge the Minister's Order! Ms. Rona did this on New Years Eve, when access to the courts will be impossible until next Monday, January 5th due to the New Years holiday and weekend. This is how the Harper administration tries to bully their way around the nation these days.

Happy New Year to everyone (except of course, Ms. Ambrose, her boss, and colleagues! ... Idiots)!

Ottawa Citizen has more ....

 

Academic Says Pamela Wallin Does NOT Meet Residency Requirements - Should NOT Be Appointed Senator 'From Saskatchewan'!

There are times when I feel like a voice in the wilderness - yammering for justice and honesty in my home province of Saskatchewan. Recently, I published a post pointing out that Stephen Harper's choice of Pamela Wallin as a Senator 'from Saskatchewan' was ridiculous, considering that she had not lived in the province for over 29 years.

Right wingers came rushing to Harper's defense by pointing out that Ms. Wallin apparently owns some gopher breeding acres somewhere in the province and they claimed that this was good enough. NONSENSE!

Now, a noted academic has come forward arguing that Ms. Wallin simply does not meet residency requirements by ANY measuring stick. She has not lived in the province long enought to vote in either federal, provincial or municipal elections. She also would not qualify for the provinces health benefits due to insufficient residency time. As well, she does not come close to being considered a 'resident' under interpretations of Revenue Canada for income tax purposes.

"Howard Leeson, former head of the University of Regina's political science department, said there is a significant question about whether former broadcaster Pamela Wallin meets the constitutional requirement for a senator to be a resident of the province for which he or she is appointed. Wallin was appointed to the Senate by Prime Minister Stephen Harper last week.

Leeson said Wallin, a nationally known journalist who is now a corporate director living in Toronto and New York, has not actually lived in Saskatchewan for decades. [...]

For federal taxation purposes, "residential ties" relate to where one's home and personal property are and where a spouse or dependents reside, said Leeson. Other relevant ties include a driver's licence, bank account or health coverage.

The constitution provides for the Senate itself to determine any questions raised about the qualifications of a senator.

Leeson, who said he is acting as a private citizen, intends to write a letter to the speaker of the Senate outlining the issue.

"I think this is the kind of star appointment that minimizes the responsibility of it. It seems to me, exactly the opposite of what the (prime minister) is trying to do, which is to make it a more relevant institution," he said.

Saskatoon Star Phoenix

 

No Remorse From Royal 'Dog Beater'!!

His Royal Highness, the Earl of 'whatever' is showing absolutely NO remorse for his despicable public beating of a dog with a large stick yesterday. In fact, this Royal twit spent the day 'touring' his mother's 20,000 'estate' on horseback with his snooty princess/sister. La dee da!

I can't believe that Canada has ANYTHING to do with this royal bunch of idiots. Any constitutional connection to this free-loading brood of aristocratic snobs must be severerd ... the sooner the better!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 

Buckdog Is One Of 4 'Progressive Bloggers' Nominated In The 2008 Weblog Awards For Best 'Canadian Blog'


It is truly 'awards season' in the blogosphere. Hot on the tail of the Canadian Blog Awards comes the 2008 Weblog Awards, highlighting the best of blogs internationally.

In the category of Best Canadian Blog there are 4 members of Progressive Bloggers:
-Buckdog
-We Move to Canada
-Calgary Grit
-Abandoned Stuff


The big news here is that past winner, smalldeadanimals, is not in the running.

I'd like to congratulate my fellow competitors and wish you a bit of luck, but not too much!

Voting commences on January 5th, and I will be back later, to shamelessly solicit your vote for Best Canadian Blog!

 

Dog Beating Prince Edward Needs To Get Hit With A Big Stick!



Buckingham Palace said Edward was trying to break up the fight between two of his dogs.
"It has not been determined that he did strike the dog. He broke up the fight with the dogs and pictures show him waving his stick around. We cannot confirm, however, whether he struck the dog."
Buckingham Palace

Royal Bullshit! He is obviously beating the dog in the picture above. The stick is clearly striking the dog's back!

This 'Royal' twit needs his ass kicked ... or better yet, needs to get hit with the same stick across his back!

I hope we don't see this particular free-loading 'Royal' in Canada again, anytime soon.

Monday, December 29, 2008 

GAZA - 'A Plague On Both Their Houses'

Morgan Strong is a former professor of Middle Eastern History at S.U.N.Y. He is a consultant with '60 Minutes'. Just prior to the current outbreak of troubles in the area, he wrote an insightful glimpse of life in Gaza . His first hand experience in the region leaves him condemning both Israel and the Hamas administration who are inextricably entangled in a mutual death wish.

" ... things happened that created great alarm to the Israelis. For one, Gaza became the hub of a stolen-car industry. High-priced automobiles were stolen in Israel and sold, or chopped up for parts, in Gaza."


"Israel had, and has, a drug problem among its population though we do not hear much about that in the United States. The Palestine Authority thugs frequently exchanged drugs in return for weapons with the Israeli soldiers who guarded them."


"Israel does not want Gaza to exist as it is. Israel cannot afford to allow Gaza to exist. It must remove the population from Gaza (1.4 million), by whatever means it can and occupy that territory."


"The Palestinian Authority after years of corrupt management of Gaza lost its right to govern the place to the radical Islamic fundamentalist Hamas movement."


"And Israel is now making their precarious existence unbearable. They are deliberately starving them, among other injustice and outrages. What Israel is doing might be called genocide, but there is great reluctance to name Israel as the perpetrator of genocide."

Consortium News

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 

Merry Christmas From Buckdog!


Here's wishing a nice Christmas to all of my readers, both fans and foes! I'm signing off for a couple of days. Stay warm and make sure that you have some fun as well!

All the Best!

Leftdog
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada

Monday, December 22, 2008 

Pamela Wallin says she'll run in Sask. Senate election campaign! HUH? She hasn't lived in Saskatchewan for 29 years!!!!

Give me a break! Our fibbing Prime Minster Harper, has appointed Pamela Wallin as a Senator from Saskatchewan! HUH? She hasn't lived here since 1979 ... that's 29 years by my reckoning!

AND .. to help our right wing Premier Wall save face (he has already announced that in 2011 Saskatchewan voters were going to 'elect' a Senator from this fair province) ... Wallin says that she will come back to this province and 'run' for Senator!

"Saskatchewan's newest senator-to-be says she will resign her appointed seat and run as a candidate when the province holds elections for Senate nominees. Pamela Wallin, a former broadcaster and diplomat, was one of 18 Senate appointments announced Monday by Prime Minister Stephen Harper. A vacancy for a Saskatchewan senator was created earlier this year when Len Gustafson reached the mandatory retirement age of 75."
CBC

Hmmmm .... I may just have to throw my hat in the ring and run against her!!

 

‘All Quiet’ In The Sask NDP Leadership Race


The race to replace Lorne Calvert as the Leader of the Saskatchewan New Democrats has one candidate.

It’s certainly difficult to mount a lot of public enthusiasm for a race that has one person in the running.

In all fairness to the Saskatchewan NDP, there have been a few other major news stories to compete with:
-economic meltdown
-possible coalition government in Ottawa
-prorogation of Parliament
-Christmas


These are some of the headline grabbing stories that are preventing the leadership race from garnering much attention both at home and outside the province.

But .... expect the race to heat up early in the New Year.

At the moment, the sole competitor is former Saskatchewan NDP Deputy Leader and Deputy Premier, Dwain Lingenfelter. Dwain has hit the campaign trail running and appears to have a lot of momentum in his bid to lead the party.

However, rumours are buzzing that a second and perhaps a third candidate may throw their hat into the ring early in the New Year.

It will not be Andrew Thomson. A facebook group that tried to nudge him into the race has not been overly successful. Sources tell me that former Finance Minister, Thomson is working in Toronto and is not interested in seeking the leadership.

The only sitting member of Caucus who may yet get into the race is Moose Jaw MLA and former cabinet minister, Deb Higgins.

As for a third, while early rumours abounded that Party President Yens Pederson may jump into the race, I suspect that this will not occur. The third contender, who is actively being encouraged to at least consider a bid, is Regina lawyer, Dion Tchorzewski. Tchorzewski’s political pedigree in the Saskatchewan NDP is legendary - his late father, Ed, having served in both Allan Blakeney and Roy Romanow’s cabinets.

Expect the race to heat up in the New Year. New Democrats are only 8 seats away from dislodging Brad Wall’s ‘Harper loving’ Saskatchewan Party administration from the government benches . A good leadership race, with lots of public interest, could mount enough enthusiasm to dislodge Wall after only one term in power. Buckdog will carry more on the ‘myth of Saskatchewan’s economic boom’ in the near future.


This is the second post in a series of editorials on the Saskatchewan New Democratic Leadership Race.

Sunday, December 21, 2008 

Happy Hanukkah



Happy Hanukkah to my Jewish friends! The Festival of Lights starts at sundown today and begins an eight-day holiday commemorating the re-dedication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem in the 2nd century BCE.

Happy Holidays!

 

Happy Winter Solstice! Hundreds Gather At Stonehenge



Some of my favourite people, pagans and druids, gathered a few hours ago at Stonehenge in England to observe Winter Solstice sunrise.

This is the shortest day of the year and the longest night. After today, we start adding a minute of two of extra daylight each day as the northern hemisphere of the Earth starts tilting back toards the Sun.

A very Happy Solstice to one and all!

Happy Holidays!

Photo courtesy Getty Inages/BBC ...

Saturday, December 20, 2008 

Are You Ready For Catholic Google?



A new type of Google search engine has been launched:

Catholic Google

This search engine provides results from all over the internet, powered by Google, but gives results of a more Catholic nature a higher weighting, which provides results that are more tailored to Catholics.

The searches also have the new built-in "safe-search" technology, to eliminate sexual explicit material, pornography etc... - According to Google, Catholic Google is the safer way for good Catholics to surf the web...

Now as a self declared, 'Recovering Catholic', I am not sure what use I will have for the new service. I don't read many biographies of Saints and Popes. I find the whole thing a bit voodoo-ish. Oh well, to each - their own! Enjoy!

 

Conservative Party Chief Fundraiser And Other Party Hacks And Flacks To Be Appointed To Senate


OTTAWA — The Conservatives are expected to appoint their chief fundraiser to the Senate as part of a spate of appointments Prime Minister Stephen Harper will make as early as Monday.

Sources told The Globe and Mail that Mr. Harper planned to pick Irving Gerstein, a long-time fundraiser for the Conservatives and the Progressive Conservative Party that preceded them. Mr. Harper is also seriously considering the appointment of former interim party leader John Reynolds.

There are 18 vacancies in the 105-seat Senate, many of which have existed since Mr. Harper became Prime Minister three years ago. There are 58 Liberal senators, 20 Conservatives, three Progressive Conservatives and six independents.

Globe & Mail


UPDATE:
And just to prove how the Conservatives try to play 'both sides of the street' on the Senate issue, they put this out there ... 'Tories threaten to abolish Senate'
OTTAWA -- If the Conservative government can't get its planned reforms to the Canadian Senate passed as soon as possible it will simply move to abolish the chamber altogether, says Steven Fletcher, the minister of state for democratic reform.

Fletcher says he will introduce legislation to introduce eight-year term limits for senators, and a process to elect senators, as soon as the budget and economic issues are dealt with and issued a warning to any parliamentarians planning to block the reforms.

"If we don't get those reforms in a reasonable amount of time we will look to abolish it," said Fletcher.



Cartoon by kind permission of
Graeme MacKay
at mackaycartoons.net

Friday, December 19, 2008 

Is Harper As Phony As He Seems?


This December 17th editorial from The Star is worth reading:

"For the past three months, the only thing consistent about Prime Minister Stephen Harper's position on the economy has been its inconsistency.

During the fall election campaign, Harper pooh-poohed talk of an economic downturn and declared: "My own belief is if we were going to have some kind of crash or recession, we probably would have had it by now."

Last month, in a speech to business moguls in Peru for the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation forum, Harper changed his tune: "The world is entering an economic period unlike, and potentially as dangerous as, anything we have faced since 1929." To address the crisis, he said, "it may well be necessary to take unprecedented fiscal stimulus."

A few days later, the Harper government produced an economic statement that contained no new stimulus, forecast balanced budgets into the next fiscal year, and suggested the economic crisis could be overcome "with prudence and restraint, combined with hard work."

Then this week in a TV interview, Harper warned: "The truth is I've never seen such uncertainty in terms of looking forward to the future. I'm very worried about the Canadian economy... Obviously we're going to have to run a deficit. We're talking about spending billions of dollars that was not planned."

What is the explanation for this roller-coaster ride?

Harper and his ministers would have us believe that circumstances have changed over the three months, morphing from a financial crisis to one affecting the real economy. But most of that was predictable and was, indeed, predicted. No one really believed the crisis could be contained to a few banks and insurance companies.

On the other hand, the political circumstances have changed, as Harper's government was almost toppled earlier this month by a coalition of opposition parties demanding more stimulus in the wake of the hold-the-line economic statement. That would account for the shift by Harper since then. But how does it explain what he said in Peru before the economic statement about the need for stimulus?

Some have suggested that the answer lies in a split between Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, who actually delivered the economic statement, and Harper on how best to address the crisis. But that is hardly credible in a government that is as centred on the PM as this one.

One is left with the uncomfortable feeling that Harper, far from the steady hand at the wheel portrayed in Conservative propaganda, is making up his course as he sails along.

The Star

Cartoon by kind permission of
Graeme MacKay
at mackaycartoons.net

Thursday, December 18, 2008 

President George Bush Says ... "I've abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system."



To every conservative, free-market, right winger who EVER criticised the Left with your vitriolic verbal rhetoric, WATCH THIS CLIP!!

This interview by Republican President, George Bush, explains CLEARLY what your Free Market crap is all about!



More proof that Conservative/Republican economics are a failure!

-Endless Deregulation Is The Cause Of Wall Street Disaster

-If The Free Market System Works So Bloody Well - Why Does The Private Sector Always Seem To Need Billions Of Tax Dollars To Bail The Bastards Out?

-The Myth of 'Fiscal Conservatism'

 

Getting The Facts Straight In The York University Strike - Guest Blog Post

Buckdog's guest blogger today is Jesse Zimmerman. He blogs at The Z-Files

Well, it’s been a hectic school year so far at York University. Half of the first semester has seen a cross-campus strike of contract professors, teaching assistants, graduate assistants and other notable faculty. What is the cause of this strike? From CUPE 3903 (their union) themselves:

Significant issues include wage increase corresponding with cost of living increase, funding guarantees for graduate students (who also form significant number of workers at York U), improved working conditions (which mean improved learning conditions for students), and job security for contract faculty (some of whom have been teaching for several years on a sessional basis, carrying 1.5-2 times the load of the permanent faculty at 1/2-2/3 of the cost for York U). Find a summary of all outstanding issues here.

The issues are obviously significant for the workers at York University to strike over. Their significance goes beyond York U however. These are issues facing non-permanent teaching and research workers in all universities, who are estimated to carry 40-60% of the workload at low exploitative wages and benefits, in poor working conditions and without any job security. This is the reality of labour in higher education institutions functioning as for-profit corporations (as is York U) governed by BoDs composed of representatives of other corporations…

What is the underlying problem? Neoliberalism. Corporatization of post-secondary institutions. The strange thing is that the administration, which has been crying poor since the beginning of the strike gave themselves a hefty (circa 15% pay-raise the year before). Immediately once the strike started there was an anti-strike backlash. Various undergraduate students, frustrated at having their classes cancelled temporarily, started pointing the finger at CUPE 3903 (funny how students like their TA’s until they are inconvenienced and wont support that they make a decent wage) and YFS (York Federation of Students), that is our undergraduate students’ union. Now, YFS never endorsed the strike, just the demands of the union for decent wages and job security. Of course, I am upset at this suspension of my academic career, one in which I strive to go far in, but I understand the situation and support my TA’s and the contract profs. I may also be one of them some day and I know what they strive for will benefit me. It is one of many fronts against rampant neo-liberals that we’ve got to fight.

There was even an anti-strike rally by like 40 students (mostly from Thornhill) where Conservative MPP Peter Shurman introduced back to work legislation and such. I, personally, have been wandering the campus speaking to different picket lines for the local campus radio. I saw various anti-union slogans written on their outhouses, and also the words YFS and HAMID (the name of the YFS president). Check out the YFS current position, one that was influenced by the NDP@York U.

Now, the Administration has pulled back from bargaining various times already. The YFS had a townhall meeting where both CUPE representatives and administration representatives were invited…the union reps came, the administration refused. I wonder why they don’t even have the decency to meet with the undergrads? We pay so much in tuition every year and they wont even speak with us.

So…some undergrads decided to take matters into their own hands. A sit-in was arranged on the 9th floor of the Ross Building outside of the President’s office. They’ve been there for more than three days at the time of this writing, slept overnight, demanding that the president at least speak to them, wishing to ask him why he can afford a major pay-raise for himself and the top admins but not pay the TA’s and GA’s decent pay…we have no response so far.

A few nights ago a CityTV reporter who had been contacted by the union and its undergrad allies came into the space outside the office to cover the story. The security, on orders from the administration, immediately kicked him out. He left and our media relations head took the cameraman into his car (akin to a scene from the Godfather) warning him never to come back. We filmed the whole thing from outside. Where are we in this country? Why can students who invest major time and money in a campus not receive even a straight answer or discussion from the administration? Why is the quality of education going down while tuition goes up? Why are war criminals for Israel and Sri Lanka invited to speak at the campus? Why are the rich getting richer and the workers struggling more and more? Why is the government not funding universities and colleges, the source of where the talent and innovation from the future comes from? Why can we spend millions on killing people overseas but not educating our own?

The strike will continue and the administration will continue to be autocratic and disrespect the students…and our sit-in will continue for as long as it needs to.
Jesse Zimmerman

POSTSCRIPT ... The Z-Files also has some film footage of University security and Administration throwing a reporter off campus property.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008 

Show Us Your Best 'Bush Throwing' Shoes!



If it so happened that you were inclined to throw your shoes at George Bush Jr., which pair would you part with? (These size 11's are primed and ready to throw)!

Also .. join the fun! Give it your best shot!

 

Time Magazine Person Of The Year - 2008 - Obama


A good pick! for Person Of The Year by Time magazine .. with the reality challenged, Sarah Palin as Runner Up!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008 

Dick Cheney Admits To Authorizing 'Torture' In US Detention Center

“One of Barack Obama’s first acts as President should be to instruct his Attorney General to appoint an independent prosecutor to initiate a criminal investigation of former Bush administration officials who gave the green light to torture,”
Michael Ratner
Center for Constitutional Rights

"Vice President Dick Cheney said for the first time Monday that he helped get the “process cleared” for the brutal interrogation program of suspected terrorists. In an interview with ABC News, Cheney was matter-of-fact and unapologetic about the harsh techniques used against the detainees — including waterboarding, a form of simulated drowning considered torture since the days of the Inquisition.

“I was aware of the program, certainly, and involved in helping get the process cleared, as the [Central Intelligence] Agency, in effect, came in and wanted to know what they could and couldn't do,” Cheney said. “And they talked to me, as well as others, to explain what they wanted to do. And I supported it.”

Consortium News

Monday, December 15, 2008 

Tory MP's Confide That Harper Needs Better Advice In His Inner Circle

I suppose that it is a good sign that some Conservative Members of Parliament are now feeling secure enough to speak anonymously on their authoritarian Leader. Harper should quietly take their advice and remove some of the rabid characters that surround him ... both staff and strategic mouthpieces. He may want to start by pushing Pierre Poilievre and John Baird back into the ranks of the far back bench. These two goons do more to turn normal average Canadians off than any other voices in the government. Harper should take note!

"You need to have some people around you who are going to disagree with you. My concern is some of the people around Harper reinforce his worst instincts whereas I'd like to see him get some calming influence," said one top Conservative insider who spoke to Hill Climbers on condition of anonymity.

"Caucus and the Cabinet want to see changes, not the leadership changes, they're firmly behind Harper but they want to see changes around him, people who are giving him advice. He has to get better advisers," said the source.

Declared another Conservative insider: "I agree totally with that. While the Prime Minister does have good people with him, one of his challenges is to expand the circle so that there can be a variety of views that are reflected to him and variety is helpful in these circumstances."

Hill Times

Sunday, December 14, 2008 

Wishing 'Happy Holidays' To All Of The Christianists Over At smalldeadanimals!

I find the contrived outrage of the extreme Right wing to be quite entertaining from time to time ... especially at Christmas! Amongst the most virulent liberal haters and Islamophobes, there is a belief that a conspiracy exists to obliterate the celebration of Christmas. To them, the greetings of 'happy holidays' or 'seasons greetings' sends them into fits and contortions.

You see, to a committed christianist, wishing someone 'happy holidays' is seen as a compromise to Muslims, Jews and those who do not celebrate the Christian feast of Jesus's birth.

To them, the mere mention of 'season's greetings' brings on a rant and tirade that is truly entertaining to witness. Here is a sample of what I am referring to, taken directly from this years seasonal rant at smalldeadanimals:

"...more evidence that the liberal movement (sic) to destroy our Christian culture."

" ...the fact that the West has decided to deep six its Christian soul."

"Getting sick of Christmas being replaced with "holiday" at my workplace. It is actually offensive to me when people twist themselves into pretzels to avoid saying the word Christmas."

"I was pretty miserable with the Salvation Army last year. They began using the term Happy Holidays whenever you dropped change in their bucket."

"When people say Happy Holidays to me I tell them I don't have any stinking holidays. When they wish Season Greeting, I ask them do they say the same in the fall season or summer season? Then I wish them a Merry Christmas."


The outrage is contrived and fits into the agenda of those rightwingers who insist on living lives of perpetual indignation.

You see, there are a number of 'holidays' from the end of November until January. There is the American Thanksgiving, Jewish Hanukkah on Dec. 22nd, Christmas Day, Canada's Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Where I live in Western Canada, there is also the Julian calendar's 'Orthodox Christmas' celebrated by many Ukrainian and Greek citizens.

In order to capture ALL of these various holidays, it is not unusual for many people and businesses to merely wish 'Happy Holidays'! This is not intended to be an insult to Christians .. it is merely a quick way to wish the best to everyone who is celebrating a variety of holidays that fall over a few weeks time.

'Christianists, (and I am referring to the fundamentalist, overly political, right wing extremists ... not Christians in general) use this contrived controversy to advance the attack on their political enemies. It is pitiful and petty.

Anyway, to make a long story short ... I want to take this time to wish ALL READERS and fans of smalldeadanimals, Seasons Greetings and Happy Holidays to you All!!

Saturday, December 13, 2008 

The Conservative Party of Canada's DIRTY LITTLE SECRET - (its full of western separatists!)

Conservative leader Stephan Harper claims that he HATES separatists and wants nothing to do with them! .... Well, at least he says that about 'Quebec' separatists.

Nowhere in his rhetoric or tirades does he ever condemn or criticise the many 'western separatists' that infest his Conservative Party.

The recent troubles in Ottawa that saw the doors of Canada's Parliament locked, were a unique opportunity to observe certain extreme right wing factions of the Conservative Party of Canada. Notably, those who advocate 'western independence' while at the same time supporting the Conservative Party of Canada.

Is Harper inconsistent in his attacks on 'separatists'? Damn right he is! He is certainly not about to bite the hand that feeds him politically in parts of Western Canada. Harper has long been able to fuel hatred for the Liberal Party and New Democratic Party by tolerating and remaining silent on the more extreme sentiments of these separatist movements:

-Western Business And Taxpayers Association

-Separation Party Of Alberta

-Western Canada Concept

-Western Independence Party

The WBTA, (Western Business And Taxpayers Association) has regular meetings ... but adds this comment when you try to find out where and when their meetings occur ... "Please note note due to the number of high profile attendees at our organizational meetings not all requests to attend these meetings will be granted. Each request will be verified."

Western separatism remains the Conservative Party of Canada's dirty little secret. It is alive and well in the western provinces.

Harper goes to great length to attack Quebec separatists, but he is cognizant of and silent on the extreme separatists who attach themselves to his federal Conservative Party.



INTERESTING PHOTO: From the WBTA site, here is former Harper organizer and Canadian Alliance Calgary SE Constituency President, Erik Gregson (left) shaking hands with David Crutcher (right) a former leadership candidate with the Alberta Alliance Party and former President of the Calgary Egmont Constituency Alberta Progressive Conservatives, and currently an organizer for Western Business And Taxpayers Association.

Friday, December 12, 2008 

NATO Supply Convoys Pay Taleban For Safe Passage In Afghanistan!

Want more proof that the NATO mission in Afghanistan is screwed up beyond all recognition? Well digest this - NATO contractors who move goods and supplies to bases around the nation are paying the Taleban for safe passage to prevent attack!

"The Times has learnt that it is in the outsourcing of convoys that payoffs amounting to millions of pounds, including money from British taxpayers, are given to the Taleban.

The controversial payments were confirmed by several fuel importers, trucking and security company owners. None wanted to be identified because of the risk to their business and their lives. “We estimate that approximately 25 per cent of the money we pay for security to get the fuel in goes into the pockets of the Taleban,” said one fuel importer.

Another boss, whose company is subcontracted to supply to Western military bases, said that as much as a quarter of the value of a lorry's cargo went in paying Taleban commanders.

The scale of the supplies needed to keep the Nato military operation going is vast. The main British base at Camp Bastion in Helmand province alone requires more than a million litres of diesel and aviation fuel a week. There are more than 70,000 foreign soldiers in the country for whom food and equipment must be imported, mostly by road. The US is planning to send at least 20,000 more troops into Afghanistan next year.

Other than flying in supplies, the only overland route is through Pakistan and Taleban-controlled areas of Afghanistan.

A security company owner explained that a vast array of security companies competed for the trade along the main route south of Kabul, some of it commercial traffic and some supplying Western bases, usually charging about $1,000 (£665) a lorry. Convoys are typically of 40-50 lorries but sometimes up to 100.

Asked whether his company paid money to Taleban commanders not to attack them, he said: “Everyone is hungry, everyone needs to eat. They are attacking the convoys because they have no jobs. They easily take money not to attack.” He said that until about 14 months ago, security companies had been able to protect convoys without paying. But since then, the attacks had become too severe not to pay groups controlling the route. Attacks on the Kandahar road have been an almost daily occurrence this year. On June 24 a 50-truck convoy of supplies was destroyed. Seven drivers were beheaded by the roadside. The situation now was so extreme that a rival company, working south of the city of Ghazni, had Taleban fighters to escort their convoys.

Times Online

Meanwhile, Canadians soldiers continue to die in Afghanistan to maintain the Conservative's military obsession .....

 

The RCMP Whitewash Is Complete - NO CHARGES In The Death Of Robert Dziekanski !

Last spring, I predicted that we would read the headline above - 'NO CHARGES' in the death of Robert Dziekanski at the hands of the overzealous, cold hearted and highly incompetent Royal Canadian Mounted Police. No public inquiry has yet been held ... however, the four RCMP officers have officially been let off the hook.

VANCOUVER, TORONTO -- Four Mounties who used a taser to subdue Polish immigrant Robert Dziekanski moments before he died of undisclosed injuries at Vancouver International Airport last year will not face criminal charges for their conduct, B.C.'s criminal justice branch will announce today.
Globe & Mail

No Canadian citizen is safe when our national police force can kill you for no reason .... and walk away without consequences. Add this to the fact that our Parliament has been locked by our authoritarian government and Prime Minister ... and you have to start wondering whatever happened to the Great Nation of Canada?

POSTSCRIPT: Oh, by the way, the RCMP have now also admitted that they lied about the number of times Dziekanski was tasered. It was not twice as they had insisited, they now admit that he was tasered FIVE times! Oh well ... ho hum ... welcome to Canada!



The complete litany of posts on the killing of Robert Dziekanski on this blogsite ....

Thursday, December 11, 2008 

Rick Mercer RANTS On Harper!



Ouch!!!!!

 

If Harper And The Conservatives HATE Separatists ... (the Quebecois version) ... Why Don't They Also Condemn Western Separatists?

Those of us who can see through the inconsistent and dishonest behaviors of Canada's Right Wing, are well aware of their avowed hatred for the Bloc Quebecois, Parti Quebecois or French speaking separatists in general.

Here is where their inconsistency shows itself ... WHEN, (if ever), have you heard Harper or ANY Conservative condemn or even criticise the yammering of Western Separatists?

-smalldeadanimals
-Western Business And Taxpayers Association


UPDATE: The Conservative Party of Canada's DIRTY LITTLE SECRET - (its full of western separatists!)


Bouquets of Gray has More ....

 

The People Versus Stephen Harper - The Evidence .....



.... More evidence ...

...... Even MORE evidence .....


H/T to Abandoned Stuff by Saskboy & Red Tory

Wednesday, December 10, 2008 

The Duplicitousness Of The Conservatives Is Breathtaking!

We interrupt this post for another very important story!!

-Saskatchewan Party Gives Conflicting Stories On How Their Chief Of Staff, Reg Downs, Came Into Possession Of Stolen Police Reports!

-Saskatchewan Justice Minister In Hot Water Over How Stolen Police Reports Into The Hands Of The Saskatchewan Party!

-Sask Party Justice Minister Caught Giving False Version Of 'Stolen Police Files' Story

Tuesday, December 09, 2008 

Wheat Board Supporters Win Four Of Five Director Seats On Board In Spite Of Conservative Party Cheating

REGINA -- "Single-desk supporters won four of five seats in the recent Canadian Wheat Board director elections, despite last-minute changes to the voters list and election financing rules by the federal Conservative government and lobbying for pro-marketing choice candidates by Saskatchewan Tory MPs."
Regina Leader-Post

Stephen Harper's Conservatives did as much cheating as they possibly could to try and influence the current round of Director elections to the Canadian Wheat Board. In spite of their dishonest manipulations, four of the five seats up for election went to individuals who strongly support the mandate of the Canadian Wheat Board.

The Conservatives did manage to get one director spot filled by the current president of the Western Barley Growers Association - a radical free market group.

Monday, December 08, 2008 

'Our Mugabe Moment, And Other Unpleasant Memories' - Globe & Mail

"From the nine Ottawa days that shook and debased our little political world, there was madness and mischief and moments that won't, unfortunately, abandon the memory for a good deal of time.

Our Mugabe moment:

Surely whoever made this comparison was joking. But read the headlines in The New York Times, on CNN, in papers across the globe: "Canadian leader suspends Parliament to stay in power." Would Robert Mugabe approve? A prime minister promises the opposition a confidence vote. A prime minister sees he will lose that vote. A prime minister moves to shut down the House of Commons, lock the doors of Parliament.

Maybe you wouldn't get much argument from the African strongman.
We were told our House was dysfunctional in August when the PM overturned his own fixed-election-date law to go to the polls. We were effectively told again last week it was dysfunctional when, like then, it wasn't."

LAWRENCE MARTIN

 

Former Member Of Conservative Caucus Verifies That Harper Is A Bully To His Own MP's

Nova Soctia Independent Member of Parliament Bill Casey (Cumberland-Colchester-Musquodoboit Valley, N.S.), was kicked out of the Conservative Caucus for voting against the 2006 Federal Budget.

While sitting in the Tory Caucus, Casey had a good look at Stephen Harper in action as Prime Minister and party leader. According to Mr. Casey, Harper consistently bullies the Members of Caucus and acts like a dictator in matters of policy.

"I remember one specific time when Mr. Harper come into caucus one day and he said, 'We've decided to make significant cuts to a lot of programs, some of these cuts may hurt your ridings but anybody who criticizes the cuts will suffer severe consequences to their political career as a Conservative Member of Parliament,' and that's an exact quote, I wrote it down at the time and then he didn't tell us what the cuts were."

"He's really smart, he has a lot of capabilities, but he does not understand that if you keep pushing people, sooner or later, they'll push back. That's what's happening, this is why we're here. This is not just because of the economic statement, this is a culmination of two years of frustration, forced confidence votes and threats. The opposition MPs just met their limit and now they're pushing back."

Hill Times

Unfortunately for Canadians, Conservative Members of Parliament are too terrified to challenge their leader and merely allow him to bully his way along daily. Canadians will soon find out that there is a huge difference between 'leading' and 'bullying'.

Sunday, December 07, 2008 

Stephen Harper Shouldn't Get To Be Dictator Of Canada Simply Because His Supporters Are Ignorant And Can Yell Loudly!

"I am a Canadian citizen standing up for democracy. I cannot understand this -- seven weeks ago, we went to the polls and we duly elected Prime Minister Harper. We elected the Conservative party to run this government."
Debbie Jodoin
(Assistant to Saskatchewan Conservative MP Rob Clarke
and one of the organizers of the Ottawa Pr0-Harper demonstration on Saturday)


It is a sad time in Canadian affairs when our more illiterate fellow citizens are being whipped into a frenzy by the LIES of Stephen Harper and his Conservative Members of Parliament. Notice how ignorant this Jodoin person is. She 'thinks' Harper was 'duly elected to run this government." No, you ignorant idiot, he was elected with the largest block of seats and therefore has the first shot at HOLDING government if he can win a majority of votes in the Parliament. He can't! ... So what have you Consevatives done? Well you have locked the doors of Parliament and democracy is on 'hold' in Canada.

Don't think for one second that we are going to be okay in this nation. These authoritarian Conservatives have already shut down Canada's parliament, and with their extensive war chest, continue a campaign of misinformation to further divide Canadians. For average Canadians, sitting back and believing that somehow this is all going to simply work itself out is a dangerous gamble.

Democracy is not safe in Canada. It barely exists at the moment.

Saturday, December 06, 2008 

Under 100 Come Out For 'Pro-Harper' Rally In Regina


About 80 persons, (I am told that many of them are recognizably political staffers from the Saskatchewan Party government), rallied in front of the Saskatchewan Legislature today. They were out to support Stephen Harper's unilateral padlocking of Parliament in Ottawa.

UPDATE:
And less than 50 persons showed up for Harper in Saskatoon this afternoon!

 

Canada's New Political Reality! - Poster #2



Ed Broadbent says it all in his article in yesterday's Globe & Mail.

 

Leaders Who Lock The Doors To Their Parliaments - Poster #1




Robert Mugabe and Stephen Harper!




These two 'leader's differ ONLY by degree ... not by substance!

Friday, December 05, 2008 

Still No Dziekanski Inquiry And Eight More Canadians Have Died By 'Taser' Since His Death

Eight Canadians have died while being tasered by police since Robert Dziekanski died at the hands of the RCMP in 2007. No inquiry into the death of Robert Dziekanski has yet occurred. Officials are trying to find a way to whitewash the death of Mr. Dziekanski and the RCMP has not cooperated in proceeding with an inquiry.

Now, on the heels of tests commissioned by CBC, Amnesty International is calling for a moratorium on police use of tasers in Canada:

"Human rights group Amnesty International is renewing its call for a moratorium on Taser use after recent tests commissioned by CBC News and Radio-Canada found some of the stun guns deliver a higher level of electricity than the manufacturer promises.

The tests, conducted by the U.S.-based lab National Technical Systems, used 41 X26 model Tasers from seven police departments in that country. Each weapon was fired six times.

Of the 41 Tasers tested, four delivered significantly more current than Taser International says is possible. In those cases, the current was up to 50 per cent stronger than specified on the devices."

CBC

Thursday, December 04, 2008 

Coalition Rally In Regina


People begin to fill the hall as the doors open for the Coalition Rally in Regina. My fellow blogger, Saskboy, is live blogging elsewhere in the hall.

 

Harper Burns The Reichstag ... er ... Locks The Doors Of Parliament



We now are a nation run by Order in Council from the Federal Conservative Cabinet table. Democracy has been set aside in the Dominion of Canada. The voice of 62% of Canadians is no longer heard. We have a functioning arrangement where representatives of 36% of the people are running the nation - with no public scrutiny.

This is a sad day for Canada.

 

If Gov. Gen Michaëlle Jean Does Not Do What The Lying Conservatives Want - She Will Be The Target Of Their Venom And Vicious Lies!

If there were any advice that I could give to Canada's Gov. Gen, Michaëlle Jean, it would be to prepare herself and brace for a blizzard of abuse, venom and lies that will be directed towards her and her spouse, by Conservative members and supporters, if she happens to deny Harper his request for prorogation.

 

These Are Not 'Progressive' Conservatives - These Are 'Lying' Conservatives!

As of now, and until they demonstrate more a more mature grasp of honesty, I will from this point on, address and refer to the Conservative Party of Canada as the 'Lying Conservatives'.

After the complete abandonment of principles of 'truth' from their leader, they deserve the new handle to more accurately define what they are all about politically and morally.

-Is Stephen Harper A Pathological Liar? (the flag)
-Is Stephen Harper A Pathological Liar? (the 'separatists')

 

New Dem - Nathan Cullen's MP Sign Firebombed


The way that Stephan Harper and his extremists have been using highly inflammatory rhetoric and outright lies, I am surprised that someone from the coalition hasn't been assaulted or worse yet.

Here is what one or more Harper supporters did to NDP MP, Nathan Cullen's sign.

.... More ...
.... and a bit more ....

Wednesday, December 03, 2008 

Is Harper A Pathological Liar? (The 'Separatists')

We interrupt this post for another very important story!!

(Reg Downs ... Saskatchewan Party official who had possession of STOLEN Regina City Police files!! - Still on the public payroll)

-Saskatchewan Party Gives Conflicting Stories On How Their Chief Of Staff, Reg Downs, Came Into Possession Of Stolen Police Reports!

-Saskatchewan Justice Minister In Hot Water Over How Stolen Police Reports Got Into The Hands Of The Saskatchewan Party!

-Sask Party Justice Minister Caught Giving False Version Of 'Stolen Police Files' Story!






Here is a copy of the e-brochure the Conservatives issued in Quebec, bragging about the amount of support they have received from the Bloc Quebecois ... (The 'Separatists')!!

1) The Bloc (separatists) voted with Stephen Harper's Conservatives more than 140 times from April, 2006 - Sept, 2008!
2) The Bloc (separatists) voted for Harper's 2006 federal Budget! (Hansard, May 10, 2006)
3) The Bloc (separatists) voted for Harper's 2007 federal Budget! (Hansard, March 27, 2007)
4) The Bloc (separatists) supported Harper's Motion recognizing that the Quebecois form a 'Nation within a unified Canada' (Hansard, Nov, 27, 2007)

Identifying a Pathological Liar
They "construct" a reality around themselves.
They don't value the truth, especially if they don't see it as hurting anyone. If you call them on a lie and they are backed into a corner, they will act very defensively and say ugly things (most likely but depends on personality), but they may eventually start to act like, "Well, what's the difference? You're making a big deal out of nothing!" (again, to refocus the conversation to your wrongdoing instead of theirs).


"In a time of universal deceit,
telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."

George Orwell

 

Is Harper A Pathological Liar? (The Flag)


"Here we have these three parties signing a document, and they wouldn't even have a the Canadian flag behind them! They had to be photographed without it, because a member of the coalition doesn't even believe in the country."
Prime Minister Stephen Harper
December 2, 2008
House of Commons

Here's the truth that dispels another of Stephen Harper's fabrications, pictures and video were taken during that signing, and they tell a different story.
The flag that was there!


Identifying a Pathological Liar
They "construct" a reality around themselves. They don't value the truth, especially if they don't see it as hurting anyone. If you call them on a lie and they are backed into a corner, they will act very defensively and say ugly things (most likely but depends on personality), but they may eventually start to act like, "Well, what's the difference? You're making a big deal out of nothing!" (again, to refocus the conversation to your wrongdoing instead of theirs).



"In a time of universal deceit,
telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."

George Orwell

Tuesday, December 02, 2008 

Would Someone Please Tell The Conservatives That They Did NOT WIN The Election On October 14th 2008!

What happened on October 14th was the election of Members of Parliament from four separate political parties. In Canada's Parliamentary system, the Party winning the most seats gets the first shot at trying to win the support of a majority of Members of Parliament in order to form government.

While Stephen Harper's party won the most seats, he has NOT been able to hold the support of a majority of Members of Parliament. Why is this ... well, because of his bullying, self-serving manner and his complete disregard for the fate of average Canadians during this time of global financial crisis.

Yet, the Conservatives are howling and bleating like a bunch of immature children who are angry that they can't be the government without having earned the support of the majority of Members in the Parliament.

No amount of lying or screaming is going to change that.

Ditch your Leader. That will be a good start at rehabilitating your pathetic political party.

 

Lies That Stephen Harper Told Us #2


Across the nation, the extreme Right wing is going off the deep end with threats and temper tantrums that are a sight to behold! Meanwhile MANY Conservatives are quietly speaking amongst themselves, wondering if the time has come to ditch Stephen Harper as their leader.

Let's give those moderate Conservatives a reminder of why this coalition has come into being ... let's remind them of the lies that Stephen Harper has polluted the Canadian political forum with:

Ahhh ... Mr. Harper ... excuse me sir ... but your pants are on fire!

Monday, December 01, 2008 

More Conservative LIES! The Fall In The TSX Had NOTHING To Do With Harper's Political Troubles!


Financial Markets - December 1, 2008

Conservatives lie. We all know it. They are so desperate, todays Big Tory Lie has been totally disproven, but because it's all that they have left ... they just keep sputtering!
Liars!

 

Jason Cherniak Endorses New Democrat - Liberal Coaliton Government



Liberal supporter and my friend, Jason Cherniak, has endorsed a coalition government of the New Democratic Party of Canada and the Liberal Party of Canada.

"I am a blue Liberal. I am a fiscal conservative and I see taxes as a necessary evil. At the same time, I believe that we have a responsibility to build a social safety net for Canadians who have fallen on hard times. While I do not like paying taxes, I am happy to do so as long as the money is being used for the good of the country. Nevertheless, I would support a Liberal-NDP Government.

As a general rule, the Conservative Party would be my second choice. I have much more in common with centre-right Conservatives than I do with New Democrats. As a result, I approach the possibility of a Liberal-NDP Government with some hesitation. Is that really what is best for Canada? In the past, I have gone so far as to argue that “the NDP is sick” and oppose the concept of working together in government. How can I justify supporting a Liberal Government that includes Minister Jack Layton?

My preference is for a Liberal majority government. That was rejected by Canadians. My second choice is for a moderate Conservative government. Stephen Harper does not offer me that choice. That leaves me with only two options: a neoconservative Stephen Harper Government or a left-leaning Liberal-NDP Government. Whether I like it or not, the best I can hope for is my third choice. Politics is the art of the possible and not the philosophy of the dreamer.

Over the past three years, Stephen Harper has turned out to be different than anybody expected. Instead of an unrepentant fiscal conservative, he is the biggest spending prime minister in Canadian history. Instead of a sound fiscal manager, he is about to give Canada its first deficit since 1996. Instead of an honest man with whom many people disagree, he spent an election lying to Canadians and is now trying to hide a deficit with a misleading fiscal update. Stephen Harper is only different than expected because nobody knew who he was before he became Prime Minister. Now that I know who he is, I am quite confident that he is the worst possible choice for prime minister, except for Gilles Duceppe.

Whether I like it or not, I have to accept that my preference is a temporary Liberal-NDP Government. It will be led until May by an honest man, Stéphane Dion. It will include some fiscally conservative Liberals. It will include some well meaning, fiscally reasonable New Democrats. It might also include some socialists, but I believe that they will be outnumbered by the non-socialists. Perhaps I could never be in the same political party as them, but I can support a government in which they participate as long as they do not control the ministry of finance or the prime minister's office.

Stephen Harper has brought this upon himself. He might have convinced many Canadians during the election that he could provide a steady hand, but he did not convince enough of them. Mr. Harper did not earn a majority government and that means that he had a responsibility to work with the opposition to provide something that enough of them could support. He failed to do so, and now the Liberals and NDP seem to be proposing an alternative government.

The Liberals and NDP together earned 44.4% of the vote, compared to 37.6% for the Conservatives. Their government would be completely legitimate. It is unfortunate that separatists hold the deciding votes, but that is what Canadians voted for. Whether the government is Conservative or Liberal-NDP, the BQ Members of Parliament will still be the ones who decide. Neither the Conservatives nor the Liberals and New Democrats can avoid that unfortunate reality."
Jason Cherniak
Liblogs



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