Monday, April 30, 2012 

Conrad Black Turned His Back On Canada When He Renounced His Citizenship .....

.... now Canada should turn it's back on Conrad Black.

 The Globe & Mail


Stephen Harper And The Conservatives GAVE THE BANKS $114 Billion Of Your Tax Dollars During The Recession ....

Canada's biggest banks accepted tens of billions in government funds during the recession, according to a report released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. 

Canada's banking system is often lauded for being one of the world's safest. But an analysis by CCPA senior economist David Macdonald found that Canada's major lenders were in a far worse position during the downturn than has ever been previously believed. 

Macdonald pored over data provided by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions and the big banks themselves for his report published Monday. It says support for Canadian banks from various agencies reached $114 billion at its peak. That works out to $3,400 for every man, woman and child in Canada, and also to seven per cent of Canada's gross domestic product in 2009. The figure is also 10 times the size of the amount Canadian taxpayers spent on the auto industry in 2009. 

"At some point during the crisis, three of Canada’s banks — CIBC, BMO, and Scotiabank — were completely under water, with government support exceeding the market value of the company," Macdonald said. "Without government supports to fall back on, Canadian banks would have been in serious trouble." During October 2008 and June 2010, the banks combined to report $27 billion in profits on their balance sheets.

The Big Banks BIG Secret ...

Friday, April 27, 2012 

Canadians Are Waking Up To The Fact That Stephen Harper Does Not Have The Best Interests Of Canada At Heart - He's An Extreme Right Winger Whose Nose Is Up Big Business's Butt

Stephen Harper is not going to be Prime Minister for ever. The sooner Canadians see him out of office, the better the whole nation will be. This country is starting to wake up to the reality of Mr. Harper's Right wing world view and destructive vision.  

"The numerous clouds looming over the Conservative government have caused many Canadians who thought highly of Prime Minister Stephen Harper two months ago to question his competence, his trustworthiness and his vision for Canada, a new poll suggests." 
The Globe & Mail

... And by the way .....
NDP Surge Ahead of Conservatives In The Polls ...... !! 

Thursday, April 26, 2012 

Stephen Harper Just Makes Stuff Up And Has No Idea What He's Talking About ....

 (typo corrected)

Prime Minister Stephen Harper was shouted down during a debate in question period Thursday on the Afghanistan mission for suggesting the NDP – not yet in existence – didn’t even support Canada’s military involvement in the Second World War. 

NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair was asking Harper if he intended to extend the Afghanistan mission past 2014 after a Postmedia News report Wednesday said U.S officials had asked Canadian special forces to stay past the withdrawal date. 

The prime minister responded the NDP has a pacifistic ideology “regardless of circumstances” and his government would make the right decision for Afghanistan’s security. 

“In 1939, the NDP leader didn’t even want to support the fight against Hitler,” Harper said, before being drowned out by cat calls. 

NDP MPs gently reminded Harper from across the aisle that the NDP didn’t come into existence until 1961, birthed by a union between the socialist Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) and the Canadian Labour Congress. “CCF, NDP, same difference,” Harper responded curtly. 

“I guess we can start talking about Reform Party policies,” Mulcair replied, to the delight of the opposition benches.'

Check out #HarperHistory on TWITTER

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 

New Democrats At 51% In Quebec - LaPresse

"(Ottawa) The orange wave that swept Quebec in the last federal election would turn today's tidal wave now that Thomas Mulcair is the head of the NDP. If a federal election were held today, the NDP would reap 51% of the vote in Quebec" La Presse - (Online English translation)


Good riddance to self centered politics Mr. Hyer!

MP Bruce Hyer had NO problem being WITH the NDP when he was seeking election. He had NO problem taking money from New Democrat supporters in his quest to be elected. He had NO problem with NDP volunteers giving endless hours to door knocking, pamphlet drops and phone calls. Mr Hyer was happy to have the NDP brand and logos on all of his material. But now ... he has a problem being WITH the NDP federal Caucus. 

I sincerely hope, from the very depths of my heart, that the door does not hit Mr. Hyer in the ass as he leaves .... Good riddance to self centered politics.


And In This Corner .. The REAL Winner Of The Alberta Election ..... BIG OIL!

THE REAL WINNERS OF THE ALBERTA ELECTION = BIG OIL .... There is no immense joy in my heart over the Alberta election results. While I am somewhat happy that the socially conservative right wing extremists in the Wild Rose Party did not win, it is difficult for me to muster up a lot of enthusiasm for a continuation of the corporate Petro-government of the PC's. After 41 years, the PC's continue to be entrenched in the halls of power. Their political machine has been given a new life and the same old corruption, abuse of power and corporate ass kissing will continue unabated in Alberta. 

 I had a sense that this may have been a unique opportunity to see the PC strangle hold on Alberta shattered once and for all. Yes, Wild Rose would have had to be dealt with but real progressives do not shrink from battling with social conservatives. The destruction of the PC's would have at least given progressives a chance to battle Wild Rose one social issue at a time. WR would have been green, chaotic and controversial .... easy pickings. 

The Oil industry continues to own and run the government of Alberta regardless of whether the PC's or Wild Rose would have won. So to all those progressives who are relieved and happy about the PC's 12th straight election win, I ask this question .... exactly when do you think you will be able to shatter the decades old PC dynasty in Alberta?

Monday, April 23, 2012 

Hey Mister .. can I have my ball back??

TOKYO — "Retrieving a lost soccer ball is standard fare for many teenagers, but one Japanese schoolboy is getting his ball back all the way from Alaska, where it drifted following last year’s tsunami. Misaki Murakami, 16, lost his house and all its contents when the massive waves of last March crushed his hometown of Rikuzentakata in Japan’s northeast. But now, thanks to an observant beachcomber in the Gulf of Alaska, he is set to have his soccer ball returned to him, identified by the “good luck” messages scrawled on it by former schoolmates."

Friday, April 20, 2012 

Some Liberals Won't Read This ... but they should!

"If history repeats, we are about a decade away from the publication of a book called “The Strange Death of Liberal Canada.” The history in question is that of Britain’s Liberal party, which dominated British politics in the late 19th century, laid the foundations of the modern welfare state at the beginning of the 20th century, led Britain in the First World War ... and then collapsed. It wasn’t reduced to rubble all at once, of course, but the transition from dominance to irrelevance was swift and bewildering. George Dangerfield captured the feeling of political observers in the title of his 1935 classic The Strange Death of Liberal England. [...] And if Canadian Liberals don’t see lessons in this history it won’t be long before someone writes “The Strange Death of Liberal Canada.” Ottawa Citizen

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 

I Am Lion Hear Me Roar - Test Post

Tuesday, April 17, 2012 

Former Sask Premier Romanow Blasts Harper For His Stance On Non-Recognition Of Charter Anniversary

"Prime Minister Stephen Harper is on “the wrong side of history” by failing to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms to avoid stirring up lingering resentment in Quebec, says former Saskatchewan premier Roy Romanow.

In an interview with Evan Solomon, host of CBC’s Power & Politics, Romanow believes bitter divisions have dissipated over time, and that Harper is in a “very, very small minority of Canadians” not marking the occasion as a historic milestone.

“I’m saddened a bit that the prime minister would not recognize it as an important contribution to Canada’s nation-building, an articulation of our values and our responsibilities," he said. "However, he’s entitled to his point of view."

The prime minister called the 30th anniversary an “interesting and important step,” but noted the charter remains inextricably linked to the patriation of the constitution — and divisions around that remain “very real.”


If The Conservative Party Of Canada Didn't Erase Their RoboCall Records ... Then Where The Hell Are They??

The Conservative Party is categorically denying it has destroyed computer records that might aid Elections Canada’s investigation into fraudulent robo-calls.

New Democrats are accusing the Tories of erasing digital logs that track access to the Conservative voter database, known as the constituency information management system (CIMS).

The Globe & Mail


US Supreme Court Rules That Anyone Arrested For Any Reason Can Be Strip Searched At Any Time By Police

The American Right's ongoing goal for a more authoritarian society got a big boost this week. A 5-4 ruling by the United States Supreme Court (5 Republican Judges FOR and 4 Democratic Judges OPPOSED) has determined that any American citizen who has been detained for any reason, may be strip searched by authorities at any time.

"In a five-four ruling this week, the supreme court decided that anyone can be strip-searched upon arrest for any offense, however minor, at any time. This horror show ruling joins two recent horror show laws: the NDAA, which lets anyone be arrested forever at any time, and HR 347, the "trespass bill", which gives you a 10-year sentence for protesting anywhere near someone with secret service protection. These criminalizations of being human follow, of course, the mini-uprising of the Occupy movement.

Is American strip-searching benign? The man who had brought the initial suit, Albert Florence, described having been told to "turn around. Squat and cough. Spread your cheeks." He said he felt humiliated: "It made me feel like less of a man."

In surreal reasoning, justice Anthony Kennedy explained that this ruling is necessary because the 9/11 bomber could have been stopped for speeding. How would strip searching him have prevented the attack? Did justice Kennedy imagine that plans to blow up the twin towers had been concealed in a body cavity? In still more bizarre non-logic, his and the other justices' decision rests on concerns about weapons and contraband in prison systems. But people under arrest – that is, who are not yet convicted – haven't been introduced into a prison population.

Our surveillance state shown considerable determination to intrude on citizens sexually. There's the sexual abuse of prisoners at Bagram – der Spiegel reports that "former inmates report incidents of … various forms of sexual humiliation. In some cases, an interrogator would place his penis along the face of the detainee while he was being questioned. Other inmates were raped with sticks or threatened with anal sex". There was the stripping of Bradley Manning is solitary confinement. And there's the policy set up after the story of the "underwear bomber" to grope US travelers genitally or else force them to go through a machine – made by a company, Rapiscan, owned by terror profiteer and former DHA czar Michael Chertoff – with images so vivid that it has been called the "pornoscanner".

Believe me: you don't want the state having the power to strip your clothes off. History shows that the use of forced nudity by a state that is descending into fascism is powerfully effective in controlling and subduing populations.

The political use of forced nudity by anti-democratic regimes is long established. Forcing people to undress is the first step in breaking down their sense of individuality and dignity and reinforcing their powerlessness. Enslaved women were sold naked on the blocks in the American south, and adolescent male slaves served young white ladies at table in the south, while they themselves were naked: their invisible humiliation was a trope for their emasculation. Jewish prisoners herded into concentration camps were stripped of clothing and photographed naked, as iconic images of that Holocaust reiterated."

Monday, April 16, 2012 

RoboCalls Probe Extends To Conservative Party Of Canada Headquarters

OTTAWA — "Elections Canada investigators on the trail of the "Pierre Poutine" suspect in the robocalls case have been asking questions about the actions of staff at Conservative party headquarters in Ottawa.

Nearly a year after the investigation began, the agency is trying to determine why database records provided by the party appear to be missing entries that could help identify who downloaded the phone numbers used to make fraudulent robocalls, according to a source familiar with the probe.

Investigators also are inquiring about a phone call from Conservative headquarters, made the day before the election, to RackNine, the Edmonton voice-broadcasting company whose servers were used to send out the robocalls.

On May 2, 2011, thousands of opposition supporters in Guelph, Ont., received a pre-recorded message directing them to vote at the wrong polling station. The electronic trail behind the calls eventually discovered led to a disposable cellphone registered in the fake name of Pierre Poutine.

The party has repeatedly and firmly denied that anybody in its Ottawa offices had anything to do with the Poutine drama, and until recently, the investigation has focused on the team of workers on the unsuccessful campaign of Guelph Conservative candidate Marty Burke.

"As you know, we have proactively reached out to Elections Canada and offered to assist them in any way we can," party spokesman Fred DeLorey said Monday night. "That includes handing over any documents or records that may assist them."

But investigators are now combing over access logs for the Conservatives' Constituent Information Management System (CIMS) to determine who downloaded a list of phone numbers for non-Conservative supporters in Guelph.

They are now certain the list of numbers in Guelph that received the robocalls came directly from CIMS, according to the source. The CIMS data were compared to listings of the outgoing robocalls provided under court order by RackNine and matched perfectly, the source said.

Investigators Al Mathews and Ronald Lamothe are now trying to determine who had access to a list of voters who previously had been identified as non-Conservatives.

Non-supporter data are entered into CIMS by volunteers collecting information during neighbourhood canvasses and by phone bank workers contracted by the party.

CIMS is known for its tight access controls and detailed event logging and retains a digital record of every transaction on the database. Interns and volunteers have been sanctioned when the logs showed they had looked up Prime Minister Stephen Harper's listing, for example.

The investigators have inquired about CIMS logs for one particular user in the party's headquarters. The logs show blanks between this person's CIMS logon and logoff on the day the Guelph data was accessed, according to the source.

Also of interest is a call to RackNine made on May 1, the day before the vote, from a number in the Conservative party war room in Ottawa.

The number is listed as belonging to Chris Rougier, who was identified as the party's manager of voter relation programs. It usually rings on his desk at party headquarters on Albert Street in downtown Ottawa, but was forwarded to the party's south Ottawa war room for the duration of the campaign.

Rougier was a key member of the target seat team, working directly under campaign manager Jenni Byrne, acting as a liaison with vendors providing telephone services to the campaign."

Ottawa Sun

... Dawg's Blawg has more ......

..... so does Saskboy ....

Saturday, April 14, 2012 

Canadian Police STILL Killing People With Tasers ...

I thought we'd been through all of this before! Police forces across Canada need to remember the definition of 'Insanity' ...

"Insanity is repeating the same mistake,
over and over and over again ...
Expecting a different result!"

Friday, April 13, 2012 

Don Cherry Agrees To Let Jean Chretien Throttle Him .....

... on the label of a micro brewery product from Shawinigan, Quebec.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 

Royal Canadian Mint Reveals Changes to $1 Loonie And $2 Toonie ...

Global Regina has more ....

Thursday, April 05, 2012 

'Where's The Eject Button"?

Cartoon by kind permission of
Graeme MacKay


Montreal Gazette: "So that's it then: They knew and they lied. To Parliament. To all of us."

"So that's it then: They knew and they lied. To Parliament. To all of us.

If Auditor General Michael Ferguson's word is to be believed — and there is no reason to think that it isn't — then the federal cabinet and by extension the prime minister, and not just the anonymous gnomes in the Department of National Defence, are directly on the hook for the F-35 boondoggle, in the most egregious sense.

They knew before the last federal election that the jets would cost billions more than had been stated by DND — at least $10-billion more, around $25.1-billion. They allowed the department to publicly table an estimate of $14.7-billion."

Montreal Gazette

Tuesday, April 03, 2012 

Brad Wall Probably Thinks That Protests Over His Cancellation Of Saskatchewan's Film Tax Credit Have Quieted Down .....WRONG!

"The loss of the Saskatchewan film employment tax credit has been a blow to the industry, but it will also be felt in Indian country, where aboriginal people were playing a major role in the film industry.

Dark Thunder is a company owned by Dennis and Melanie Jackson. Their most famous work is the acclaimed series Wapos Bay. Their specialty is the labourintensive genre of stop motion animation. They hire a crew of 45 to 50, not including the cast. While a feature film can be shot in four to five weeks, it takes about six months to complete a stop motion production of equal length. About half their crew is aboriginal.

Since 2005, they have produced 35 half-hour productions and a television movie, and their work has won four Gemini awards. This week their latest work, Long Goodbyes, won for best foreign animation at the International Family Film Festival in Hollywood.

My company, Blue Hill Productions, was the first to access the employment tax credits. In 2000, we did a coproduction with Cine Teleaction, a Montreal-based company that was drawn to the province because of the tax credit, the talented crew and beautiful landscape.

The four-hour miniseries, Big Bear, starred Gordon Tootoosis, Tantoo Cardinal, Michael Greyeyes and Lorne Cardinal. Numerous other Saskatchewan actors were also cast for various parts.

The production had a $8.5 million budget, and more than half of it was spent in Saskatchewan.

Today I have another script for a feature film about Gabriel Dumont. Sadly, if we produce this we will do it in Alberta or Manitoba. It will be one of many Saskatchewan stories that will be shot elsewhere.

The past decade has seen a renaissance in aboriginal production. With the combination of the Aboriginal People's Television Network, SCN and the Saskatchewan film and television tax credit, we were able to go after production agreements for series, documentaries and drama.

I produced three series and a number of one-off documentaries. I also partnered with Cory Generoux, and we produced two seasons of the sketch comedy the Bionic Bannock Boys. Our latest series, Oskayak Down Under, was shot partly in New Zealand. Both Oskayak and the Bannock Boys will be part of APTN's fall lineup.

But that will probably be it. With the loss of the tax credit I am unable to raise the money to finance any more major productions.

The employment tax credit was a tax rebate based on the Saskatchewan labour that was used in a production. This meant that photographers, editors, actors and others returned home from other provinces and became part of the growing Saskatchewan film and television industry.

Now it's all in shambles. We lost SCN last year, and only a few underfunded projects were commissioned. This year we lost the tax credits, and the industry is in its death throes.

The premier said he will not reinstate the tax credits, but left the door open to work with the industry and offered a vague commitment to look at other options.

When labour tax credits are the industry norm across North America, it remains to be seen what our government can offer. Tax credits encourage employment, build a local industry and develop crews.

Our involvement in the film and video industry was the kind of economic development I envisaged for aboriginal people. We developed viable competitive companies that were successful.

We hired integrated crews and worked for the common good of the industry.

Over the years I have mentored and encouraged young aboriginal people to work in the industry. Our last production of the Bannock Boys had a crew of whom more than half were aboriginal. We were proud of our work and looked forward to doing more. The film industry is a natural for our people; it's creative, it's abut storytelling, it's collaborative and it is fun.

We were players in the industry. The future looks bright for aboriginal production companies in other parts of the country, but not in Saskatchewan. I will complete the work I have and wind down Blue Hill.

Crew members are looking at a career change or a move, and other companies like Dark Thunder will leave to start up elsewhere.

It will be sad to see talented and gifted people driving a cab or flipping burgers.

This move on the part of the Saskatchewan government is one of the most pointless and stupid pieces of public policy in recent memory. It appears as if the government deliberately went out to destroy an industry. The overall economy is on the upswing, yet we have been placed in a depression. For the life of me I can't figure out why.

The only explanation points to the narrow-minded, single-issue, right-wing lobby of the taxpayers' federation. Over the past decade, the province has spent $100 million on an industry that brought $600 million into the province. Rather than look at the positive side of the ledger, the government and the federation see the investment as a liability, which is a lousy way to do business.

Now Saskatchewan returns to its status as a flyover province, and we're out of the mainstream.

Saskatchewan is back to the resource industries and we are hewers of wood and drawers of water. It's sad to watch so much talent and energy wasted for narrowminded ideology."

© Copyright (c) The StarPhoenix
The Saskatoon Star Phoenix

Monday, April 02, 2012 

Conservative Attack Ads That We Expect To See In The Very Near Future!

It's just a matter of time before something similar to this appears on your TV and monitor ...

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