Friday, April 30, 2010 

Brad Wall Breaks Another Promise - Signs 'TILMA' Under Different Name

New West Partnership is almost identical to trade deal he pledged not to sign

Regina – Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has broken his promise to not sign TILMA, today putting his signature on the New West Partnership trade agreement that is almost identical in every respect to the agreement rejected by the people of Saskatchewan in 2007.

“For Premier Wall to claim that he has not signed TILMA is simply not true,” said Larry Hubich, the President of the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour. “The New West Partnership is lifted almost word for word from TILMA and offers no meaningful protections for municipalities or Crown Corporations, the two issues Wall said just this week were the reason he would not sign TILMA. This agreement isn’t TILMA-like, it is TILMA.”

Like TILMA, the New West Partnership has a “no obstacles” clause (Article 3) which commits Saskatchewan to ensure that its measures do not operate to “restrict or impair trade,” a mutual recognition clause (Article 5) which will harmonize provincial standards and regulations to the lowest common denominator, and an investor-state dispute resolution process (Part IV), which gives trade panels the power to force governments to pay up to $5 million for any measure that violates the agreement. Procurement for all provincial government entities, Crown Corporations, municipal governments, school boards, and publicly-funded academic, health and social services are included in the agreement, with identical thresholds as those found in TILMA.

“Practically the only difference between the two trade agreements is the cover,” added Scott Harris,Prairie Regional Organizer with the Council of Canadians. “Besides adding the word “Saskatchewan” and changing “party” to “parties”, there isn’t a different word between the two until page 7 and only a handful of paragraphs that are different through the whole agreement. I don’t know how Brad Wall can keep a straight face when he says he hasn’t signed TILMA.”

The New West Partnership’s schedules 2, 3, and 4, which cover International Cooperation, Innovation and Procurement, respectively, expressly state that they are not legally binding on any of the three provinces and create no financial obligations.

“It’s clear that the only reason the other three agreements were stapled to the back of TILMA was so that Brad Wall could claim he was signing a new agreement,” said Hubich. “But I don’t think the people of Saskatchewan are going to be fooled by this smokescreen. The only part of the New West Partnership that means anything is the trade agreement, and it’s TILMA.”

Saskatchewan Federation of Labour News Release ,,,,

 

BC Premier Gordon Campbell Introduces Sask Premier Brad Wall At Saskatchewan Party Fundraising Banquet

Huh?! Why was 'Liberal' Gordon Campbell introducing Brad Wall at an event that was intended to raise partisan dollars for the ultra-Right wing, Saskatchewan Party?

I guess there is truth in the old saying 'birds of a feather flock together'.

-Saskatoon Star Phoenix

Thursday, April 29, 2010 

What the hell is the 'New West Partnership Agreement' that 3 Premiers are sneaking around to sign tomorrow??

Saskatchewan's Premier Brad Wall is sneaking around, getting ready to sign something called the 'New West Partnership Agreement'. Unfortunately no one will tell the public what the agreement covers. The high level of secrecy going on here is fairly disturbing.

"As reported in the Regina Leader-Post on April 28, governments of Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia are set to sign off on the New West Partnership by the end of the week. This interprovincial trade agreement is nothing but TILMA (the Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement) with a new name and all the same negative consequences for Saskatchewan.

Following broad public consultations on TILMA in 2007, the Saskatchewan government decided not to enter into the agreement with Alberta and BC. At that time – and on numerous occasions since – Premier Brad Wall and other members of the Saskatchewan Party promised not to sign TILMA, and pledged to consult with stakeholders and the public before signing any such an agreement. Despite those promises, it appears that the Premier is about to sign an agreement that nobody has seen and about which there has been no public consultation.

On April 22 the Council of Canadians and the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour, along with over 30 groups and individuals who participated in the 2007 TILMA review, sent an open letter to Premier Brad Wall calling on him to keep his promise to not sign TILMA and to undergo a legislative review and hold full and transparent public hearings on the issue before signing any interprovincial trade agreement. Our media release stated, “Saskatchewan was right to reject TILMA then, and it should reject a rebranded TILMA now … Nothing has suddenly changed to make lowest-common-denominator regulations and standards good for Saskatchewan. Nothing has suddenly changed to make giving corporations the right to sue elected governments for millions of dollars for ‘impeding trade’ – decided on by unaccountable dispute panels – suddenly a good idea for Saskatchewan.”

April 28, 2010
Council of Canadians

-Owls & Roosters has more ...

Progressive Bloggers
(This post NEEDS your vote)

Wednesday, April 28, 2010 

Goldman Sachs PROVES The Danger Of Unfettered - Unregulated Free Markets!



Throw the bastards in jail!

 

The Conservative Anger Machine


Brian Topp's op/ed in the April 27th Globe & Mail is a great analysis of Speaker Milliken's decision concerning the Afghan detainee documents. Mr. Topp made one statement that has particularly stuck in my mind:
".... Mr. Milliken can now look forward to a taste of the conservative anger machine ..."

Canada's political scene is still coming to terms with the way that the Harperite communications crew operate. They are obnoxious. They are loud. They are vicious. They are generally unreasonable. They are sarcastic and cynical. They are usually angry or outraged. They are a threat to reasonable political discourse in Canada.

The Conservative Anger Machine began spewing their frothing crap seconds after Milliken finished his speech to the House of Commons:

"At the end of the day, Iggy & Layton are a couple spineless wets. Want to go to the polls on Taliban prisoners? Not likely."
Kory Teneycke Tweet

"Gov. is right. Crown prerogative is about Ntl security (& not new). This is all about electoral politics for Liberals & sport for the media"
Kory Teneycke Tweet

"This seems typical of Canadian politics RT @yycconservative: The final decision: NO DECISION!!!! "
Stephen Taylor Tweet

"I hear that Peter Milliken is a card-carrying Liberal!"
Stephen Taylor Tweet

"Election anyone?"
Stephen Taylor Tweet

"So let's have it out. Let's call the question. And let's not let a single Speaker of the House -- however competent -- make the decision. Let's not even put it to the nine Supreme Court judges. Why should just one Canadian vote on it, or just nine? How about all of us? Let's all vote on whether or not the likes of Ignatieff, Malhi and Wrzesnewskyj -- and, moments later, their friends at the Toronto Star and CBC -- should have access to the most sensitive security information. Let's all take sides -- the Liberals and NDP can side with their friends Omar Khadr, Maher Arar, and the Taliban, and the Conservatives can side with our Canadian Forces. Let's put it to a question."
Ezra Levant blog post -'Election Now!'

"The ruling has precipitated the expectation that the government will not comply with the demand, forcing a confidence vote and an election. If it does come to that, there will be hell to pay for downing the government over such a peripheral, unimportant issue. It’s bad enough that Canada has completely dropped the ball on the Afghan mission, turning what was supposed to be a Parliamentary Commission on the mission in Afghanistan to report on and recommend changes and improvements in the country, into something of an arm of the opposition party to investigate ridiculous second-hand torture claims. But to actually defeat the government over something that happened over three years ago, and mainly because of a flawed transfer agreement initially created in haste by the dithering outgoing Liberal-Martin government, is just too much. To watch the opposition play political games over a mission as important as the one in Afghanistan is nothing short of disgusting."
Unambiguously Ambidextrous blog post - 'There Will Be Blood!'

Notice all the bluster about an 'election' ... this coming from a party that is at 29% in the polls!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010 

"PARLIAMENT IS SUPREME" - Speaker

PARLIAMENT IS SUPREME and Stephen Harper and the Conservatives MUST comply with Parliament. However, security of the documents will be arranged.

Conservative spin doctors are trying to portray this as 'no decision' ... typical Right wing LIARS!! Mr. Speaker's decision was definite!

Canadians have had enough of this conservative government and their self centered, self serving, right wing, war mongering, political crap. If Harper wants to play 'political chicken' with the nation and not comply with Parliament's order then he does so at the peril of his government. At 29%, does Harper want an election??

Just for the record, Ignatieff, Duceppe and Layton were in the House of Commons for the historic ruling by the Speaker. Stephen Harper was not.


-CBC News


UPDATE:
Here is the Conservative reaction to the Speakers Ruling:

Tory statement on Milliken ruling:"We are ███████ that ████ doesn't seem ██ ████. We ██ █████ to ███ our ██ ███."

(.........just kidding)

 

Who Knew That The Brad Wall Gov't Would Cost Us So Much?



Progressive Bloggers

Readers of this blog know that I have pointed out a number of cases that dispel the myth of 'fiscal conservatism'. The Right continues to believe their own political lie that they are somehow 'responsible' when it comes to administering public tax dollars. Bull! More proof of this myth was provided in Saskatchewan by the Provincial Auditor.

Here is a choice excerpt from the report on how 'fiscally conservative' our Right wing Brad Wall government of Saskatchewan actually is:

"Because the government uses inappropriate accounting policies, the GRF financial statements (for 2008-09) report net debt and annual surplus inaccurately. If the government had accounted for all transactions properly, the statements would have recorded net debt of $8.07 billion instead of $3.85 billion on March 31, 2009, and recorded a surplus of $1.62 billion instead of $2.39 billion for the year ended March 31, 2009."
Report of the Provincial Auditor on the 2008-09 Government Accounts

Sunday, April 25, 2010 

Battle of Fish Creek - Metis Defeat Federal Canadian Forces April 24, 1885




125 years ago this weekend the bloody battle at Fish Creek in Saskatchewan occurred in what was at the time, the North West Territories. While representing a Metis victory over the forces of the Government of Canada, it was merely the prelude to the Battle of Batoche a few weeks later which saw the end of the Northwest Rebellion.

In 1885, the Provisional Government of Saskatchewan was involved in an armed conflit with the Dominion of Canada.

-Wikipedia - Battle of Fish Creek
-Suite101

Friday, April 23, 2010 

Mr Spock Travels To Vulcan (Alberta) Today


Progressive Bloggers

VULCAN, Alta. - "After 44 years, a few generations of TV shows and multiple movies, Mr. Spock is finally making the trek home to Vulcan. Leonard Nimoy, who has played the character since "Star Trek" debuted in 1966, is set to beam in to the tiny Alberta town this afternoon.

He'll lead a parade alongside Mounties and the town's high school band, which will serenade him with songs from the show.
Nimoy will then unveil a bronze bust of Mr. Spock and leave a live-long-and-prosper handprint.

The town of about 1,900 people has based its tourism industry on the fact it shares its name with Spock's birth planet"


Live Long and Prosper!

Thursday, April 22, 2010 

Sask MSM Only Covering SOME Of The Serge Leclerc Scandal

I have been staying away from the Serge Leclerc scandal for a couple of reasons. First, I don't care who anyone goes to bed with as long as it is between consenting adults.

Second, unlike the Right Wing, I consider drug addiction to be a progressive disease that is difficult to recover from and where stopping is no longer a question of choice once the individual has become addicted.

However, in an attempt to prompt Saskatchewan's main stream media to cover some of my concerns in this scandal, I am bringing the following excerpt forward from yesterdays Hansard of the proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan:

The Speaker: — I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, well before the cocaine affair came to light, the Premier should've been looking into the potential misuse of taxpayers' dollars by his legislative secretary. Anyone who visits this individual's personal website, which he uses to promote himself as a public speaker, will find that the person responsible for booking those highly lucrative speaking engagements is Ryan Long. Ryan Long is also the individual's constituency assistant, whose salary is paid by the taxpayers. The same person who served as the constituency assistant is also the main contact for the individual's company. To the Premier: does he still think it is appropriate for Saskatchewan taxpayers to pay Ryan Long to book lucrative speaking engagements for his legislative secretary?

The Speaker: — I recognize the Minister of Justice.

Hon. Mr. Morgan: — Mr. Speaker, the matter has been turned over to the Regina Police Service. We will continue to co-operate fully and completely with the Regina Police Service. We do not intend to make any further comments on this matter while the matter is with the police service, Mr. Speaker. And I'd like to urge the members opposite, if they have other information, if they think there's an impropriety, they can raise the matter with the Board of Internal Economy. They can give the matter to the police. Mr. Speaker, we will, on this side of the House, give our full, complete, candid co-operation with the Regina Police Service. Mr. Speaker, if the members opposite have any other additional information, I'm sure the Regina Police Service would be glad to receive it. Mr. Speaker, I urge them to give the same level of co-operation that this side of the House has given.

The Speaker: — I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, we know the Premier's legislative secretary for Corrections, Public Safety and Policing was potentially using his constituency assistant and his office inappropriately for his personal affairs. And we know that the Premier did nothing about it for two years. What we don't know is whether this individual was also using his position as a legislative secretary in an inappropriate manner. Weeks ago the official opposition asked written questions about this legislative secretary's expenses and travel. The government has refused to answer those questions. To the Premier: why the secrecy? Was his legislative secretary for Corrections, Public Safety and Policing using taxpayers' dollars inappropriately for his own personal gain?

The Speaker: — I recognize the Minister of Justice.

Hon. Mr. Morgan: — Mr. Speaker, if the members opposite have some additional information that would be beneficial to the Regina Police Service, I would urge them to give it to them. If they have other issues that they wish to raise, let them raise it in the Board of Internal Economy. Let them raise it through written questions, (???)* Mr. Speaker. Let them raise it in the ordinary and usual fashion . . .
[Interjections]

The Speaker: — Minister of Justice.

Hon. Mr. Morgan: — Mr. Speaker, the matter is with the Regina Police Service. We will let them do their work. The members opposite should let them do their work. We've made comments on this earlier in the media. We do not intend to make any further comments. We will let this matter work its way through in the ordinary course. The police are involved, Mr. Speaker, and that is where we are going to stop our comments, Mr. Speaker. The matter is with the police and we will give the police our co-operation. Mr. Speaker, if the members opposite have some other information, let them give it to the police or let them deal with it appropriately.

The Speaker: — I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, it's a basic question. Did the legislative secretary for Corrections, Public Safety and Policing use his position for personal gain? But the Premier refuses to answer and keeps hiding behind a police investigation. But the issues that will concern the Regina Police Service are very different from those that concern the Legislative Assembly.

April 21, 2010 Saskatchewan Hansard 4955

[(???)* huh .. submit more written questions for the Sask Party to ignore!!!]

Wednesday, April 21, 2010 

Jaffer Claims He Has NEVER Used Drugs ....

... I guess he just likes carrying Cocaine around in his pocket for good luck!

 

Former Sask Conservative Cabinet Minister - Convicted For Murder - Turns Over Book Profits


"Former Saskatchewan politician and convicted murderer Colin Thatcher is turning over the profits from his book to the Saskatchewan government. Thatcher was ordered to do so in a recent court decision."
CBC Saskatchewan

Tuesday, April 20, 2010 

Argentina's Former President Sentenced To 25 Years For Torture

A former President of Argentina has been sentenced to 25 years in jail for the torture and illegal detention of thousands of his citizens during the nation's 1976-1983 military regime. At long last, a process of open accountability was finally achieved to bring truth to the people of Argentina.

Meanwhile back in Canada, federal lawyers acting on instructions from the Harper government, continue to obstruct the process of open accountability for our own torture issues in front of the Military Police Complaints Commission.


Progressive Bloggers

 

Two Canadians Face Possible Year In Jail For Damaging US Flag After Crosby's Gold Medal Winning Goal

There is an old saying about 'when in Rome do as the Romans' ... and when in the USA, any Canadian who takes down the American Stars and Stripes and replaces it with the Red Maple Leaf should expect some trouble.

-The Globe & Mail
-CBC News

Monday, April 19, 2010 

Saskatchewan Woman Dies When 911 Call Not Responded To

An investigation has commenced into the death of a woman who died on a remote logging road in Northern Saskatchewan when her call to 9-1-1 did not bring help. This is quite a tragic story and the results of the investigation are anticipated by anyone who has learned of the incident.

People who live in northern areas are well aware of the dangers that travelling on remote roads can pose. Nothing illustrates that better than this tragedy.

The Globe & Mile

Sunday, April 18, 2010 

If The Afghan War Can Be Ended Wtih Talks ... Then Talk!

Because after so many years it doesn;t look like it can be won by people killing each other.
Times online

Friday, April 16, 2010 

Sask MSM Finally Breaks Its Silence On Coverage Of Possible Theft Of PC Trust Fund By Wall's Saskatchewan Party

The news story that Saskatchewan's main stream media would not touch is finally being reported on. The case that has had no public profile and was being kept from the residents of Saskatchewan is now out in the open. If it should turn out that members of the Saskatchewan Party have conspired to keep the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan from access to their Trust Fund - or worse - that they tried to obtain the $3,000,000 Trust Fund, then they will have to account for their actions to the voters of the province.

"A three-member panel from the Court of Appeal reserved its decision Thursday on whether the Saskatchewan Party will remain a defendant in an ongoing lawsuit launched by the provincial Progressive Conservative Party in 2007. The case revolves around an allegation that Saskatchewan Party employees or caucus members conspired with five trustees of the PC party's estimated $2.9 million trust fund to deprive the revived party of money it needed to run PC candidates in the 2007 provincial election."
Regina Leader-Post


"Given the gravity of the issue, Wall's convenient absence when reporters wanted to ask him about this issue, and Justice Minister Don Morgan's nonsense that his party does not comment on matters before the courts, are simply unacceptable. (Really, sir? You and your party in Opposition never asked the NDP about matters before the courts, such as Spudco or the Murdoch Carriere case?)Setting aside the NDP's eagerness to score political points, the Saskatchewan Party clearly owes the public an explanation of its involvement with the fund."
Saskatoon Star Phoenix


Progressive Bloggers

Wednesday, April 14, 2010 

Why Are Members Of The Saskatchewan Party Taking Funds Belonging To The Sask Progressive Conservative Party? - PART 2

For the record:
No government Member rose to answer any of these questions put to them in the Saskatchewan Legislature for a second day in a row on April 13, 2010
:


Progressive Bloggers

Mr. Yates: — Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I have in my hand a Court of Queen's Bench judgment. Mr. Speaker, on June 18, 2008, Justice Kyle said, and I quote:
". . . the plaintiff said the specific persons involved are Brad Wall, Doug Emsley, Ken Krawetz, Reg Downs and caucus members who discussed the withholding of the Progressive Conservative trust money." Mr. Speaker, that's a direct quote. My question is to the Premier: did the Premier, his Deputy Premier, or any member of his caucus ever conspire to take the Progressive Conservative trust money to fix the outcome of the 2007 general election?"

The Speaker: — I remind the member of the rules, the rules that were brought into place in 2005 and prior to, that questions relating to political parties or Board of Internal Economy are not directly related to ministerial responsibility. The ministers may or may not choose to answer the questions. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Premier in his role as the Chair of the Executive Council. Has the Premier and the Deputy Premier or any member of his caucus ever attended a meeting with the trustees of the Progressive Conservative Party trust to conspire to take the money and fix the outcome of the 2007 general election?

The Speaker: — Again I remind the House of the rules implemented by the members of the fact that questions are to be directed toward ministerial responsibility. Anything related to party or board may or may not be responded to. Member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Thank you, Mr. Speaker. The role of the government and the role of the Executive Council is to act on behalf of the people of Saskatchewan in a manner which is in the best interest of the people of Saskatchewan. My question to the Premier is this: how many of the Progressive Conservative trust trustees named in the judgment from the Court of Queen's Bench were or are members or supporters of the Saskatchewan Party?

The Speaker: — I again remind members of rule 19(2), and the fact that questions should be directly related to ministerial duties and responsibilities. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I'll move my questions then to the Minister of Justice who has a responsibility under law to represent the rule of law. And, Mr. Speaker, I ask the Minister of Justice the following question: since he has been appointed, since he has been appointed Minister of Justice, has he ever met with, talked to, or been aware of any meetings or discussions between the Premier, the Deputy Premier, any caucus member, or any senior staff member with the trustees of the PC [Progressive Conservative] trust fund over the future of the PC trust fund and fixing the fund?

The Speaker: — Just to remind members that questions should be directly related to a ministerial responsibility, ministerial responsibility. And anything . . . The rules are very . . . The rules are . . . [Interjections] Order. Order. Order. The rules are very clear about anything regarding party, Board of Internal Economy, 19(2). Read the rules. Read the rules. Read the rules. Next question. Next question. Member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, it's unfortunate that ministers of the Crown don't follow their own legislation. Mr. Speaker, I have in my hand the Court of Queen's Bench judgment. And I'm going to quote again from Justice Kyle: "It also said that between 2003 and December 2008, the P.C. Party trustees, represented by Douglas Emsley, met with Saskatchewan Party Caucus, Brad Wall and Ken Krawetz. As a result of these meetings, the Saskatchewan Party caucus was informed that the P.C. Party of Saskatchewan would not receive any money from its trust until after the 2007 general election". My question, Mr. Speaker, is to the Premier: will the Premier admit that he conspired to fix the outcome of the 2007 general election?"

The Speaker: — Again I'm not exactly sure where the member from Regina Dewdney is going with the questions, bringing into the Assembly judicial rulings. And in regards to the rules before the Assembly, ministers feel it's their responsibility, they may or may not respond to the question. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.

Mr. Yates: — Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. I want to state again that the integrity of a government and the members of Executive Council are paramount to the people's confidence in their government. Mr. Speaker, this was appealed by the Saskatchewan Party. And I want to read the final quote from Justice Kyle, and I quote: "Clearly, the action against the Saskatchewan Party would not be allowed to proceed if it were just a publicity stunt or an exercise in paranoia but the dual roles of the trustees and the questioned changes in the trust agreement by the trustees raise enough questions that the matter is not plain and obvious and beyond doubt as the precedents require. In the result, therefore, I find that the application fails to meet the established test and it is therefore dismissed with costs in the cause to the plaintiff." Mr. Speaker, so I ask the Minister of Justice once again: has he ever been part of any meeting, any discussions, or is he aware of any meeting or discussions between the Premier or the Deputy Premier or any member of his caucus with members of the PC trust fund over fixing the trust fund to not allow the Conservative Party to obtain their money?

The Speaker: — I just remind the members of the rules that were implemented, by the rules of the Assembly we've been operating under for years. And as we have already noted before, the questions should be related directly to ministerial responsibility. Anything with regards to party or Board of Internal Economy, a minister or any one minister of the Crown may choose to respond.

From Hansard - Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan
April 13, 2010


-Official Opposition Website has more ...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010 

Well Pardon Me! Sask Party MLA claims his federal pardon was by act of parliament - turns out it was routine

"(Serge) Leclerc, who represents Saskatoon Northwest, has been convicted of serious crimes relating to involvement with gangs and drugs. His criminal file was sealed when he was granted a pardon by the National Parole Board in February 2000. Leclerc claimed in his autobiography, Untwisted, that his pardon was an extraordinary move, entailing a special act of Parliament. But Leclerc's parole board document indicates it was a routine pardon as per the conditions laid out in the Criminal Records Act."
CBC Saskatchewan

Progressive Bloggers

 

Why Are Members Of The Saskatchewan Party Taking Funds Belonging To The Sask Progressive Conservative Party?

Love political intrigue? We have a situation in Saskatchewan where officials and activists in the Saskatchewan Party have gained control of the Trust Fund of the Progressive Conservative Party of Sask. To keep the Sask PC's from actively contesting provincial elections, former PC trustees have joined the Saskatchewan Party and now hold $3,000,000 of PC money. The endgame is simple. Brad Wall does not want to see his provincial support split to the PC's.

However, this looming scandal is now the 'elephant in the room' ... how can the Saskatchewan Party hold control of $3,000,000 that belongs to the Progressive Conservative Party? Here is how it started in the Saskatchewan Legislature yesterday when New Democrat MLA, Kevin Yates attempted to ask questions of the Sask Party government.

For the record:
1) no government Member rose to answer any of the questions:

2) no MSM news outlet in Saskatchewan will carry this story (Not CBC - Leader Post - Star Phoenix - NewsTalkRadio .... I wonder why? ... media bias .. or more likely, 'Libel Chill'???)


Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, my question is to the Minister of Justice. Does the Premier consider the Saskatchewan Party to be the Saskatchewan conservative party? - (No Member of the Government stood to reply)
The Speaker: — Order, order. I want to remind the members that the questions should relate to ministerial duties or responsibilities. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, once again to the Minister of Justice: if the Premier's party is not the Saskatchewan conservative party — and of course it is not — why are members of his party taking funds belonging to the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan?
The Speaker: — Again I remind the member the question should be directed to the ministerial responsibility of members. If ministers want to respond, we'll let them respond. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, does the Premier consider it appropriate for the Saskatchewan Party to deny the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan its money in order to prevent its participation in provincial elections?
The Speaker: — Again I must remind the member of the rules that the questions are to be related to the ministerial responsibility of the ministry. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, once again my question is to the Minister of Justice. The Premier has a pattern of taking things that don't belong to him. Will the Premier return the $3 million, which was taken by the Sask Party, to the Progressive Conservative Party? The Speaker: — I again remind the member under rule 19(2) that questions should be directly related to ministerial responsibility. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Thank you, Mr. Speaker. Once again my question is for the Minister of Justice. Does the Premier believe taking money belonging to another political party is legal?
The Speaker: — I remind the member again from Regina Dewdney of rule 19(2) that questions are directly related to ministerial responsibility. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, once again my question is to the Minister of Justice. Does the Premier believe that the money should be returned to the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan?
[14:30]
The Speaker: — I again remind the member that the questions should be related to ministerial responsibility. And if the questions are not related to ministerial responsibility, then we will move to the next question. I recognize the member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Mr. Speaker, my question to the Justice Minister is this: does the Premier believe that the money that was put aside in a trust fund by the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan should be immediately returned to the Progressive Conservative Party of Saskatchewan? The Speaker: — Again, again I bring to the attention of the member from Regina Dewdney, the question does not relate directly to the ministerial responsibility of the Minister of Justice. Next question. The member from Regina Dewdney.
Mr. Yates: — Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker. My question to the Minister of Justice is: in a fair and unbiased electoral process, should all political parties have the right to run candidates and use the funds raised by them in a fair and impartial electoral process?
The Speaker: — I remind the member of the rule, and ministers if they so wish may respond.

From Hansard - Legislative Assembly of Saskatchewan
April 12, 2010

Progressive Bloggers

Saturday, April 10, 2010 

Anniversaries That The Right Doesn't Seem To Celebrate Anymore - March 21, 1983



Proclamation 5034—Afghanistan Day, 1983
By the President of the United States of America, 21 March 1983

"The tragedy of Afghanistan continues as the valiant and courageous Afghan freedom fighters [The Taliban] persevere in standing up against the brutal power of the Soviet invasion and occupation."
President Ronald Reagan simply loved the Taliban in 1983!


He loved them so much that the USA flooded them with as many weapons and ammunition as they could handle ... (hoping they'd shoot them at the Soviet Union). However, things didn't quite work out the way the Republican government wanted them to!

ONE LAST THOUGHT:
It is entirely possible that Canadian soldiers have been killed by weapons that were given to the Taliban by the US Republican government of Ronald Reagan!

 

Harper And The MSM Seem Unaware That Karzai Previously Supported The Taliban

"There were many wonderful people in the Taliban".
Hamid Karzai - 1998
The Washington Post

Our Prime Minister was shocked this week when Afgan President Hamid Karzai, expressed his frustration by saying that he may 'join the Taliban'.

Too bad that Stephen Harper doesn't read my blog. If he did, he would have seen my posting from November, 2007 where I pointed out that Hamid Karzai had previous involvement with the Taliban.
Buckdog Politics

"When the Taliban emerged in the mid 1990s, Karzai, like many other Afghans, supported them, because he saw them as a force that could finally end the violence and corruption in his country. However, he later broke with them and refused to serve as their ambassador to the United Nations, telling friends he felt the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) was wrongly using them.[18] Karzai recently stated that "there were many wonderful people in the Taliban."
wikipedia.org

Canada's military mission (war) in Afghanistan continues with only some of the facts and a whole lot of failed militaristic ideology.

.... oh and let's not forget the day that President Ronald Reagan met the Taliban and PRAISED THEM!!!

Friday, April 09, 2010 

Guergis Quits

Finally!
Globe & mail

... even though the odd, old political dinosaur was still trying to spin for her.

 

Harper Is Rewriting Canada's History To Portray A 'War' Tradition

Most Canadians have great pride in Canada's peacekeeping legacy established during the 1950's. The Suez Conflict, Cypress and other conflicts saw brave Canadian soldiers coming between the warring sides and imposing a ceasefire.

But 'peacekeeping' is something that Stephen Harper has no respect for. He wanted us in Iraq and he has us in Afghanistan. Part of the right wing mindset is a firm adherence to 'war culture'. Today, Harper is trying to give Canadians a big dose of his ideology by holding World War One appreciation events across the nation.

World War One was one of the stupidest wars of the 20th century. Here is a recycled post from this site, first published in November, 2008:

Being the peacenik that I am, I simply can't let this story pass without an alternative viewpoint being expressed.

On my television this week, I am being told that Canadian soldiers died for Canada's 'freedom' during the First World War ... to 'protect and preserve our nation'. I struggle with this interpretation of the pointless, meaningless conflict known as 'the First World War'.

Stop any citizen on the street and ask them what the reason for the First World War was ... and see if they know. Essentially, three Royal 'cousins' ... England's King George V - Germany's Kaiser Wilhelm II - Russia's Czar Nicholas II (all three were grandsons or grandsons-in-law of Queen Victoria) ... had a royal 'family feud'.

Here is what triggered World War One:
-In June, 1914 Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne was assassinated by a Serb.
-The Austria-Hungarian Empire retaliated against the Kingdom of Serbia.
-The Russian Empire told Austria-Hungary to keep hands off Serbia.
-Austrian-Hungarian Empire said 'screw you' ... declared war on Russia.
-The German Empire joined with Austia-Hungary.
-England joined with Russia and France... Canada was automatically at war because Britain was in a state of war.
-All hell breaks loose ... 20 million people DIE.

In all of this, I am not sure how Canada was threatened as a nation. I am not sure why 60,000 Canadians died (4000 from Saskatchewan) in mud filled trenches in Europe. Young men who joined up with a sense of patriotism and adventure .. how can you fault them? At the time, it seemed like a good idea. But here we are now, with history to assist us in our interpretation of the need for this idiotic bloodbath.

Nearly a century later, our government is struggling to bring meaning and reason to the death of Canadian soldiers in a pointless war. So, we flash their names onto our legislative buildings, and praise them for their courage.

I do NOT doubt their courage. I doubt only those who continue to propagandize the 'need' for armed conflict and the death of young men and women who get caught up in feelings of patriotism.

War is primitive. It is neanderthal. Shame on those, in the modern era, who jump to war as a first option, without any attempts at alternate resolution.

Thursday, April 08, 2010 

Sex Ed Wars In Wisconsin - "Show Condoms To A Kid And You Go To Jail" Says District Attorney

"A Wisconsin district attorney is urging schools to drop their sex-education programs, warning that the teachers involved could be arrested if they follow a new state law requiring them to instruct students on how to use condoms and other contraceptives. [...] The state law, called the Healthy Youth Act, took effect in March. Starting this fall, it requires schools with sex-education courses to teach students medically accurate, age-appropriate information, including how to use birth control and prevent sexually transmitted diseases. It also requires the classes to include information about how to recognize signs of abuse and how alcohol can affect decision making.

Parents will be permitted to remove their children from sex-education classes, as they could under previous state law. Schools also will be allowed the choice of whether to offer sex education, but must notify parents if they decide not to.

In his letter, (District Attorney) Southworth told school district leaders the new law promotes sexual assault of children, and warns that teachers who follow the law could be charged with misdemeanor or felony delinquency of a minor, with maximum punishments ranging from nine months in jail to six years in prison.

AOL News

-New York Times

UPDATE
But beating the snot out of children in school with straps and yard sticks is A-OKAY with Rightwingers!

Wednesday, April 07, 2010 

Sask Party MLA "would be severely reprimanded or possibly even fired in most any other workplace" -Regina Leader-Post

Serge LeClerc is a Saskatchewan Party Member of the Legislative Assembly. His threatening behaviour towards the Leader of the Official Opposition is garnering a lot of attention due to his previous stint in the Canadian penitentiary system.

"More disconcerting, however, was Lingenfelter's recollection of another incident from last November -- a story reported on in this newspaper -- in which he was loudly confronted and even allegedly threatened by LeClerc in the rotunda.

Again, no independent source clearly heard the entire exchange in which LeClerc allegedly asked Lingenfelter to step outside or go to a bar where the two could presumably settle their differences in the old-fashioned, manly way. That said, reporters passing by did witness a very loud and angry LeClerc in Lingenfelter's face during that rotunda encounter.


The incident concerned Lingenfelter enough at the time to privately report it to legislative security because, according to the NDP leader, LeClerc also allegedly made threats about "knowing where Lingenfelter's family lives." LeClerc called Lingenfelter's accusation an "outrageous lie".

Whether LeClerc would be foolish enough to actually threaten Lingenfelter's family remains debatable, but the tone (as heard by reporters) and admitted words used by LeClerc sure seem to support Lingenfelter's version of most of the exchange.

According to LeClerc's own written account of the incident (dated Nov. 26 and released by government officials Thursday) LeClerc admitted to confronting Lingenfelter in the rotunda (because Lingenfelter called LeClerc a "dummy" in an earlier committee meeting) and got "very close" to Lingenfelter "so that I could speak directly and quietly to him". LeClerc's statement also admitted to calling Lingenfelter a "coward" and the Sask. Party MLA said he suggested "we could go for a walk together or meet at a bar and I would respond to his personal insult."

The issue here isn't so much the elevated middle finger or even a single MLA with anger management issues. The problem is that -- at least on a subconscious level -- such bad behaviour at the legislature isn't being discouraged. If anything, it is encouraged.

Yes, encouraged. Strictly based on what he admitted to saying, LeClerc would be severely reprimanded or possibly even fired in most any other workplace. If it were high school, he'd certainly be kicked out"
.

Regina Leader-Post

Progressive Bloggers

Tuesday, April 06, 2010 

Saskatchewan Government Violates International Human Rights Laws

"Once again, a provincial government has embarrassed Canada at the International Labour Organization. This time it is the Saskatchewan government that has been chastised by the ILO’s expert body on freedom of association."
Workplace Law Blog

Sunday, April 04, 2010 

Dr. Martin Luther King's Prophetic Words Still Resonate 42 Years After His Assassination


“A nation that continues year after year to spend more money on military defense than on programs of social uplift is approaching spiritual death,”
Martin Luther King Jr.
April 4, 1967
(The speech was titled 'Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break Silence.' It was delivered exactly one year to the day before his assassination on April 4, 1968 in Memphis. The people who heard that speech recognized it as one of the most powerful speeches ever given articulating the immorality of the Vietnam War and its destructive impact on social progress in the United States.
Consortium News

Saturday, April 03, 2010 

Are Obama / Clinton Slipping A 'Poison Pill' To Stephen Harper?


Progressive Bloggers

If it should so happen that Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have decided that American fortunes are best served by having Stephen Harper's Conservatives out of power, don't expect Canadian progressives to rally to the defense of our current Right Wing government.

Exactly what has Stephen Harper done to win the loyalty of non-Conservatives in Canada? He prorogued the democratically elected House of Commons TWICE! He has obstructed the will of parliament over valid enquiries into torture in Afghanistan. He has tried to remake this great nation into some sort of Reform Party corporate vision. He has weasel worded Canada's military mission in Afghanistan into a 'support the troops' refrain. His words have shown contempt for Canada. He is the worst prime minister Canada has ever seen when it comes to honest portrayal of the real issues.

If Harperites think that Canadians will line up to defend him merely because we are all Canadians, they can think again.

The sooner Stephen Harper is a footnote in the history of Canada, the better we all will be! Harper has shown loyalty only to those who share his Right wing ideology. I owe no loyalty to Stephen Harper - neither do you!

-Toronto Star
-Globe & Mail

-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Postscript:
Oh ... and here's the 'poison pill'! ...

Friday, April 02, 2010 

Supreme Court Of Canada Will Rule On Internet Speech Debate

"The Supreme Court of Canada, in one of its first cases dealing with the spread of information on the Internet, will decide whether the everyday practice of hyperlinking can expose a writer to a lawsuit if a linked article is defamatory.

"This case affects almost everybody on the Internet because the Internet works by linking from website to website to website," said David Fewer, director of the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic."

Ottawa Citizen

-P2Pnet.net has more ...

Thursday, April 01, 2010 

Sometimes I Have To Shake My Head At The 'Hillbilly' Antics Of The Brad Wall Gov't


Progressive Bloggers

Everyone over a certain age, will remember an old TV program known as 'The Beverly Hillbillies'. Whenever I turn on Saskatchewan's Legislative channel and watch the performance of Brad Wall's Saskatchewan Party government, I am reminded of the Clampett family.

Want some examples? Well to start, the Wall government recently put a bounty on coyotes and have been paying Saskatchewan farmers $20 bucks a head for each one that they kill. After a few months of the program, 23,000 coyotes have been shot or trapped.

However, having killed so many coyotes, it seems that the 'gopher' population is exploding and the Wall government is now going to pay for eradication of the rodents. It's too bad that the Wall government can't make the connection between coyotes and gophers. Coyotes are nature's way of controlling gophers!

In their zeal to put whatever money they can into the hands of their rural voting base, the Saskatchewan Party has compounded the problem for the very people they say they want to help.

Not only are the actions of the Wall government reminiscent of the Beverly Hillibilles, so is the oratory skill level of some of their MLA's - in this case, the Saskatchewan Party Deputy Speaker. Here is an excerpt from the March 31, 2010 Saskatchewan Hansard. New Democrat MLA, Judy Junior is called to task for 'unparliamentary language'. HUH? What unparliamentary language is the Deputy Speaker referring to?

Ms. Junor: The Sask Party has totally underestimated the people of Saskatchewan. They will not take it. They will not be fooled by another budget that ’s just totally going to take us into debt. It forward -thinking, whatever. None of the above. It certainly lost the words transparent and accountable a long time ago. Nobody buys it, and nobody ’s bought this one.And I can see by the faces of the members opposite they don ’t buy it either.They ’re looking extremely uncomfortable. They came to this legislature in government pretty darn cocky, extremely cocky, arrogant. They were rude, obnoxious. Now there ’s nothing. There ’s .. .

The Deputy Speaker: I would caution the member when talking about other members not to use unparliamentary language. I recognize the member from Saskatoon Eastview.

Ms. Junor: — I was talking 'rude and arrogant', so I ’m not sure if you could tell me, Mr. Speaker, which ones of those are not parliamentary?

The Deputy Speaker: — First of all, a member is not to question the Speaker. You were talking about members with them words.

Ms. Junor: — Thank you, Mr.Deputy Speaker. I ’ll try to use better words. I know that the Speaker has ruled that we can certainly use “simply not true,”so I do think that people understand that these members, the members of the Sask Party, what they ’re saying to people is simply not true. When they talk about all the t hings that they ’re doing and giving and all the good things in the budget,they ’re not true.They ’re not true. There ’s things in this budget that .. . People are going to really suffer. And my colleagues have pointed many of that out, many of those things out.


I am sure that Ms. Junor will be careful not to use 'them' words again! ;)

Postscript:
The good news is that Saskatchewan people will be rid of these yahoos in 584 days!



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