Tuesday, January 30, 2018

A Post of Some Import

Quite a bit going  on ...

Now, who is so disgusted with the Liberals that what is happening now would cause them to never vote for them ever again?

Hey - where did all of these crickets come from?

The comment comes days after former Liberal Sports and Persons with Disabilities Minister Kent Hehr resigned from cabinet over allegations he made inappropriate sexual comments to women in elevators during his time as a member of the Alberta legislature and groped others since coming to work on Parliament Hill. Trudeau was asked why Hehr can remain in the Liberal caucus while other members hit with similar accusations have been removed.
“I don’t have a rule book that’s been handed down by Wilfrid Laurier as leader of the Liberal party on how to handle these situations,” Trudeau said during a press conference Tuesday afternoon in Ottawa.
“Every case will be different.”

Hehr, who won the coveted seat of Calgary Centre for the Liberals for the first time in 2015, resigned pending the outcome of an investigation into his conduct.

However, Trudeau banished or allowed the resignations of four other MPs from his caucus over the last four years after similar accusations of misconduct were leveled against them.



Open Nominations: “Open nominations, which I continue to be committed to and have always been committed to, is about letting local Liberals choose who is going to be their candidate in the next election….” CTV News, March 18, 2014.

So this was never a promise Trudeau was going to keep, but we should keep a running list of ridings where it was egregiously broken. ...

Vancouver South: Under what looked for all the world to be pressure from Liberal higher-ups, Barjinder Singh Dhahan in favour of serial-exaggerator Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, leading to resignations on that riding’s LPC riding association executive.

Vancouver East: A face-saving “internal investigation” helped to shove allegations of people being signed up a LPC members without their consent or knowledge under the rug.

Ville-Marie–Le Sud-Ouest–Île-des-Soeurs: Marc Miller, buddy to Trudeau, earns votes from people who say they never signed up as members. ...

No Protection For Incumbent Liberals: In 2013, Trudeau was very clear: Sitting MP’s could and would and should be taken down.

“I had to fight a really tough nomination (in 2008), where I wasn’t the candidate that the party wanted to win,” Trudeau said.

“And everything I achieved in the rest of my career, including this leadership run, I owe directly to that nomination race because it taught me about working on the ground, it taught me about organizing, it taught me how to win over people step by step.”

Isn’t that lovely. Well, Trudeau reversed himself and said that the 20-year-old Liberal Incumbent Protection Program is here to stay

(Sidebar: read the whole thing.)

As long as people tolerate this, it will continue.

That it does shows an extraordinary ignorance and wickedness on the part of people who think tribally but never ethically.

Who should be surprised?

(Merci to all)

I got the sense that Vic Fedeli was stepping in but did not want to commit to something greater:

The Ontario Progressive Conservatives' newly-minted interim leader is bowing out of the race to replace his predecessor, saying he needs to devote all of his time to addressing a party that is in "much worse shape" than he realized.

Vic Fedeli announced at a news conference at Queen's Park on Tuesday morning that he no longer plans to be a contender in the leadership race, which is expected to take place before the June 7 provincial election. Tory MPPs named Mr. Fedeli interim leader last Friday, following the sudden resignation of Patrick Brown after a CTV news report alleging sexual misconduct involving two young women. Mr. Brown has denied the allegations.

A wise scribe once remarked that the nuclear plant meltdown in earthquake-stricken Fukushima was to be taken care of by the Japanese (read: do not be overly concerned for professionals are on the case) and that Chernobyl was run by the Russians (read: Three Stooges).

Canada is an imminent Chernobyl:

There was a feeling when this process began six months ago that talks would need to end well ahead of Mexico’s presidential vote in July and U.S. mid-term elections in November. The original goal was to conclude by the end of 2017.

That deadline probably would have required Canada and Mexico to cave at the outset. They didn’t, so the safer political play now could be to leave things ambiguous until the votes are over.

Such an outcome would be a win for Trump, and a loss for Canada.

Freeland, the foreign affairs minister, has said from the start that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won’t accept a bad deal. But neither she nor Trudeau have been especially clear on what would constitute a “bad deal,” outside of suggesting that an independent dispute-settlement process must remain.

You have to wonder whether Trudeau’s red lines are fading as the economic backdrop changes? Hopefully they are. The cost-benefit analysis of holding out for something that looks like a clear win is different now than it was a year ago.


Canada's plan to include expenses for engineering, research and development and other high-value work to be counted in higher targets for North American content was aimed at safeguarding high-paying jobs in the region, with Mexico calling it "innovative," but declining to offer its own specific position.

U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the Canadian idea would allow too many parts from China and other low-cost Asian countries to be included in the autos exempt from tariffs under NAFTA.

"The reality is, you're going to have much, much less regional content, and that's clearly fewer jobs for us, clearly fewer jobs for the Canadians and I believe, fewer jobs for Mexico," he told reporters in Montreal.

Under NAFTA, at least 62.5 percent of the net cost of a passenger car or light truck must originate in the United States, Canada or Mexico to avoid tariffs. U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration wants the threshold raised to 85 percent, with half of the content made in the United States, a proposal that is untenable for Canada and Mexico.

Canadian negotiators presented their so-called creative ideas as a counterpoint to the U.S. demands, but offered no numbers of their own, Lighthizer told reporters.

Canada's back ... and its Arctic is experiencing a fire sale! :

As reported by Reuters,“China on Friday outlined its ambitions to extend President Xi Jinping’s signature Belt and Road Initiative to the Arctic by developing shipping lanes opened up by global warming. Releasing its first official Arctic policy white paper, China said it would encourage enterprises to build infrastructure and conduct commercial trial voyages, paving the way for Arctic shipping routes that would form a “Polar Silk Road”.
The report also notes, “China’s increasing prominence in the region has prompted concerns from Arctic states over its long-term strategic objectives, including possible military deployment.”
Meanwhile, Canada’s icebreaker fleet is so weak that “mechanical problems kept the service from helping a ferry trapped in the St. Lawrence River.”

Now, the government is having to lease icebreakers.

While the city of Halifax is at it, it should remove Pier 21 and any memorial to the 1917 explosion that nearly wiped it from the map. If one is content in wiping out history, do it whole hog:

The Eastern Canada city of Halifax on Tuesday agreed to take down a polarizing statue of Edward Cornwallis, an 18th-century British governor who offered cash bounties for killing indigenous people.

Cornwallis was a British military officer and governor of Nova Scotia who sought to eradicate indigenous Mi'kmaq people in his attempts to establish Halifax.

Indigenous groups last summer held protests demanding that the statue be taken down, met by counter-protests by right-wing groups. Another protest was planned for the coming weekend over the city's inaction on the matter.

"If we want reconciliation, we pull down the statue immediately," said Councillor Richard Zurawski, according to the Toronto Star newspaper. "Let's end the 500 years of broken promises and take away this visual symbol of supremacy."

The city council voted to put the statue in temporary storage until authorities determine how to best to commemorate the polarizing figure.

Appease a pack of malcontents today, they will find something else to be angry at tomorrow.

And whose fault is it that there are still two Koreas, UN?

An estimated 60,000 children face potential starvation in North Korea, where international sanctions are exacerbating the situation by slowing aid deliveries, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday.

Kim Jong-Un has other things to worry about:

Kim Jong-un has reportedly exhausted his financial inheritance after his penchant for missile tests and extravagant vanity projects left his country’s slush fund dry.

I think you picked a bad week to have a military parade, Jong-Un:

A massive crowd has gathered at a public square in Pyongyang to mark a military parade to be held on the eve of the opening of the PyeongChang Olympics, a US broadcaster reported Tuesday, suggesting North Korea will push ahead with the event despite an Olympic detente and international condemnation. 

The Trump administration has decided not to put any more sanctions on Russia or Putin's wealthy friends:

The Trump administration has released a list of 114 Russian politicians and 96 “oligarchs” it says are linked to Russian President Vladimir Putin, but it’s decided not to issue any extra sanctions for now.

Culture matters:

The Indian government said Monday that there were more than 63 million women “missing” from its population, and that 2 million go “missing” across age groups every year due to abortion of female fetuses, disease, neglect and inadequate nutrition. There are also 21 million unwanted girls, the government said.
The 2017-2018 estimate, released as part of the country’s annual economic survey, reinforced the work of researchers and social scientists, who have argued that decades of son preference in India and its parallel in China, the One Child policy, have produced a man-made demographic bubble of excess males – those now under 25 top 50 million – in the two countries and may have long-term impacts on crime, human trafficking, the overall savings rate and the ability of these excess males to find brides.

“We know that the sex ratio in India is highly skewed,” the government’s chief economic adviser, Arvind Subramanian, said at a news event Monday, noting that the study further showed that Indians have a “meta” son preference, which means that if they have girls, they’ll keep on having children until they get a boy. This has led to an estimated 21 million “unwanted” girls in India, who often get less nourishment and schooling than their brothers.

And now, another unearthing in Egypt:

Scientists have unearthed in a Sahara Desert oasis in Egypt fossils of a long-necked, four-legged, school bus-sized dinosaur that lived roughly 80 million years ago, a discovery that sheds light on a mysterious time period in the history of dinosaurs in Africa.

Researchers said on Monday the plant-eating Cretaceous Period dinosaur, named Mansourasaurus shahinae, was nearly 33 feet (10 metres) long and weighed 5.5 tons (5,000 kg) and was a member of a group called titanosaurs that included Earth's largest-ever land animals. Like many titanosaurs, Mansourasaurus boasted bony plates called osteoderms embedded in its skin.

Mansourasaurus, which lived near the shore of the ancient ocean that preceded the Mediterranean Sea, is one of the very few dinosaurs known from the last 15 million years of the Mesozoic Era, or age of dinosaurs, on mainland Africa. Madagascar had a separate geologic history.

Its remains, found at the Dakhla Oasis in central Egypt, are the most complete of any mainland African land vertebrate during an even larger time span, the roughly 30 million years before the dinosaur mass extinction 66 million years ago, said palaeontologist Hesham Sallam of Egypt's Mansoura University, who led the study published in the journal Nature Ecology and Evolution.

The scientists recovered parts of its skull, lower jaw, neck and back vertebrae, ribs, shoulder and forelimb, back foot and osteoderms.

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