Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Mid-Week Post

In the bleak mid-autumn ... 



 
It's just money:

Darren Peers of Capital Group Companies – a large investor in the energy sector including in Canadian energy – is warning that investors are looking outside of Canada as the energy industry in this country continues to struggle.

In a letter, Peers said “Capital Group’s energy investments are increasingly shifting to other jurisdictions and that is likely to continue without strong government action. I hope that your government will be even more proactive in securing market access which will assure the competitiveness of Canadian energy companies.” 

He added, “Market access is critical to an investment in a Canadian energy company and if that continues to be under threat, global investors will seek opportunities elsewhere and Canadian companies will be further impaired. Increasingly, investors are questioning the merits of investing in Canadian energy and with that, Canadian companies will struggle to access capital, create jobs, develop resources and provide a significant revenue stream for the country.”

**

According to the CP, “He pointed to the fact the national shipbuilding strategy only includes plans to build one new heavy icebreaker as proof. Canada’s 15 existing ships, of various sizes, are on average more than 35 years old and nearing the ends of their life expectancies. Coast guard officials admitted last month that they expect to use the Davie-supplied ships for the next 15 to 20 years. 

“There’s just a lack of planning and it’s all ad hoc,” Huebert said of replacing the coast guard’s existing fleet. “We haven’t built a bloody coast guard icebreaker since the 1980s and government keeps giving it industry’s castoffs.”

**

The Ontario government is exploring a suite of measures aimed at revealing the cost of the federal carbon tax on the province’s gas prices and home heating bills, as part of Premier Doug Ford’s continued pushback against Ottawa’s plan.

(Sidebar: oh, do tell!)

**

The federal government is planning to award another $38 million into the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women, bringing its total budget to $92 million.

The new money, included in the fall supplementary estimates, comes after Ottawa granted the inquiry a six-month extension in June. The inquiry’s commissioners had originally asked for a two-year extension and $50 million beyond their original $53-million budget.

The inquiry says the money will cover operating costs for the additional six months as well as unforeseen expenses, including translation, IT requirements and aftercare for those who have spoken at the hearings.

“The (systemic) causes of violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQQIA people are rooted in 500 years of colonization,” a spokesperson said in an email. “Time and investment are required for a thoughtful and thorough examination into the underlying reasons for this national tragedy.”

(Sidebar: what the fudge is 2SLGBTQQIA? Never mind. I don't want to know.)

**

Canada wants to walk down the path toward a free-trade agreement with a bloc of 10 Asian nations as early as next spring, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Wednesday in his only opportunity to directly address the leaders of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

(Sidebar: that's nice but our biggest trading partner will always be the US and Justin screwed that up by talking.)

**

Canada’s largest aerospace company surprised investors Nov. 8 by saying it would need to tap proceeds from the sale of its Downsview facility in Toronto to meet a goal of breaking even on a cash-flow basis this year, plus or minus $150 million. Next year’s goal of break-even cash flow, plus or minus $250 million, fell short of analyst estimates.



When you have nothing to your credit but a series of failures, then one might as well lie and lie often:
The Liberals attempt to deceive was called out by Conservative MP Erin O’Toole:

“Cool graphics, but what is missing is the recognition that all of these major trade agreements were negotiated by Conservative governments. In fact, the Liberals have weakened each of these deals especially the poor terms in USMCA.”




Also:

According to Elections Canada, about 207,000 voter information cards were sent out in the last election to people that were already dead. Another 57,500 went to people that were not citizens.

With the Trudeau government set to allow voter information cards to be used as identification in the next election we should all be worried.

Are dead people going to vote? Did they vote in the last election?


"Say what?"

As long as Canadians are not vocal or demonstrative, the lying plutocracy that is the Liberal Party will carry on violating the privacy of every citizen for its own gain:

 A new Nanos Research poll shows the vast majority of Canadians oppose the effort by the Trudeau government-controlled Statistics Canada to take our financial information without permission.
55% oppose the data grab, and 19% somewhat oppose it.

By contrast, just 9% say they support it, while 14% somewhat oppose it.

Combined, that’s 74% against the theft of our info, and just 23% supporting it.

Additionally, the majority of Canadians in all provinces and among all age groups oppose it.




It must be that transparency I've heard so much about:


Just a day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke out in Paris in support of a free press — an institution he said needs to be "free-thinking, independent, rigorous, robust, respected" — Canada's finance minister gave a key speech in Beijing behind closed doors.
Journalists were barred from listening to Finance Minister Bill Morneau's speech Monday because "the Chinese officials speaking at the dinner have asked that it not be open to media," said Sarah Kutulakos, executive director of the Canada China Business Council (CCBC), the host organization for the event.




I'll bet this gets some people angry:


On Twitter, Maxime Bernier rightfully called it ‘barbarism.’

“Radical multiculturalism is the misguided belief that all values and cultures can coexist in one society.

They cannot. 

We must protect our society against this kind of barbarism.”


Also:


All 460 rockets were fired from the Gaza Strip, a self-governing Palestinian territory in Israel’s southwest. Since Gaza came under the control of the terrorist group Hamas in 2007, it has been subject to strict Israel border blockades in an effort to curb Hamas’ ability to conduct terrorist operations.


And - because Jews:


The right to remain silent was likely never intended to apply to the prime minister after an alleged anti-Semitic hate attack in the heart of a Jewish neighbourhood in Toronto.

This silence from the very top is difficult to not notice.




But I thought that these spas were inescapable:


More than 20 child murderers have been transferred to Indigenous healing lodges since 2011, according to numbers from Public Safety Canada.





Pollution is alright when some people do it:


Turns out while the Wynne-McGuinty Liberals were ostensibly fighting man-made climate change by driving hundreds of thousands of Ontarians into energy poverty as they sent electricity prices into the stratosphere, they did nothing as raw sewage flowed into Ontario’s lakes and rivers 1,327 times last year alone.

Seven hundred and sixty-six of these incidents were caused by 57 outdated municipal sewer systems that combine raw sewage with stormwater — flowing directly into Ontario’s waterways — along with industrial toxic wastes, the regulations governing their discharge not having been updated for a quarter century.



 Also - but ... but ... global warming!:


Scientists behind a major study that claimed the Earth’s oceans are warming faster than previously thought now say their work contained inadvertent errors that made their conclusions seem more certain than they actually are.

Two weeks after the high-profile study was published in the journal Nature, its authors have submitted corrections to the publication. The Scripps Institution of Oceanography, home to several of the researchers involved, also noted the problems in the scientists’ work and corrected a news release on its website, which previously had asserted that the study detailed how the Earth’s oceans “have absorbed 60 percent more heat than previously thought.”




And now, animals on the run - literally:


A Newfoundland farmer is on the lookout for an escaped cow that hopped his farm’s fence last Thursday.
Coco was last spotted on Saturday, two days after she leapt over the fence and escaped the farm in Conception Bay South, 30 kilometres west of St. John’s.

“I’ve had cows for my lifetime and I’ve never had one do that,” said farmer Barry Scott.


**

Liam Boland, currently on his honeymoon with his wife, was driving along Highway 1A between Morant’s Curve and Castle Junction at around 4 p.m. last Thursday when they “saw a figure cross the road in the distance.”

“As a photographer, I was curious,” Boland said in an email to Postmedia. “I’m a lover of wildlife but even more of a lover of bears.

“Everything in my mind was saying it was a bear from distance, but I knew it was late in the year. I’ve waited my whole life to see a grizzly in either the wild or captivity.”

Boland said he and his wife drove closer and stopped on the side of the road. He said they never got out of their vehicle during the encounter for their safety and for the bear’s.

“He was massive. I couldn’t believe my eyes as he was strolling through the trees with not a care in the world,” said Boland.

Luckily, he had his camera at the ready.

“He then made eye contact with me and I managed to capture that, and he came a little closer, he never changed the pace he was walking at unless he stopped to sniff something in the air, probably me,” said Boland.


Monday, November 12, 2018

For a Monday

(sigh)


The frat-boy who groped a lesser member of the Fourth Estate, who elbowed a woman in the chest, told a man to "get the f--- out of my way", called another MP a "piece of sh--", ran out of "Question Period" to decry those opposed to releasing a convicted child-murderer to a spa "ambulance-chasing politicians", whose government has consistently lied or withheld the truth from its own citizens  and looked at a veteran square in the eye and told him that he and his lost leg were asking for far too much money makes it abundantly plain that he will not tolerate gutter attacks or censorship:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says politicians need to learn how to enhance citizen engagement through the use of social media in the face of leaders using those platforms to undermine democracy.


Also - Mr. "No Core Identity" warns everyone of the dangers of jingoism, as if anyone is listening:

“Attacks on the media are not just about getting your preferred political candidate elected, for example, they are about increasing the level of cynicism that citizens have towards all authorities, towards all of the institutions that are there to protect us as citizens,” Trudeau said to a crowd of about 150 people.

“When people feel their institutions can’t protect them, they look for easy answers in populism, in nationalism, in closing borders, in shutting down trade, in xenophobia.”

(Sidebar: like when the government lets its statistics agency take bank data without authorisation or when it plans on buying a hotel to house all of the migrants it let in? Like that?)




Who else is xenophobic? Ah, yes - the Chinese government:

According to the CP, International Trade Minister Jim Carr “says while Canada is in talks with China on a number of fronts, he insists efforts to promote deals involving individual sectors would not preclude the opportunity for a wide-ranging trade agreement between the two countries. Carr says China’s interest in so many Canadian products could ultimately lead to a comprehensive trade agreement.”

Amazingly, Carr appears to be falling for China’s rhetoric on free trade:

“Carr said Canada and China also discussed a recent meeting on World Trade Organization reform, hosted in Ottawa without either the U.S. or China. China understands the need to hold an initial meeting without them, Carr said. “The Chinese are absolutely committed to a world system that’s rules-based, and I thought that’s also very positive.”

More of that transparency one keeps hearing about.




It's just money:

But between indirect costs rising from the carbon tax and the news that the feds will be charging GST on the carbon tax, it’s certain Trudeau’s carbon tax will in fact cost most families more than they pay.
First off, the Trudeau plan will not reimburse you for what you spend on direct increased costs due to the carbon tax such as higher gasoline or home heating costs.

Instead they will put a schedule in your income tax forms that will reimburse you for parts of it based on Canadian averages.

If you have a larger-than-average family size, a larger-than-average home or a longer-than-average commute, then you will pay more.



It's just a series of illegal migrants deciding the political future of a nation:

British Columbia is currently in the middle of a referendum on electoral reform. Sure, voters turned down proportional representation before but with the NDP back in power, let’s try again!
So can non-citizens vote in this referendum?

Well they aren’t supposed to but they can because neither Elections BC, not it turns out Elections Canada, has the ability to check.

News 1130 in Vancouver followed this story after hearing from a listener who is not a citizen but was able to vote. Turns out the whole system is based on honour
“The system is an honour system for confirming that you are in fact a citizen,” Rebecca Penz with Elections BC said. “We don’t have the ability to use records such as health records to validate citizenship. We don’t have that authority to do that.”

Also:

A law student unimpressed with all of the candidates running in his riding in the 2015 federal election who wanted to vote “none of the above” has lost his Federal Court of Canada challenge that election rules breach his right to freedom of expression.

Of course the unelected judges would feel that way.




No one really cares what Justin thinks, especially about a president who eventually did commemorate the war dead:

Trudeau visited the memorial to fallen Canadian soldiers at Vimy Ridge on Saturday and spoke at a peace forum organized by French President Emmanuel Macron on Sunday. He’ll leave France on Tuesday for a six-day trade trip to Singapore and Papua New Guinea.

Trump, meanwhile, flew home to the U.S. on Sunday after addressing a crowd at the Suresnes American Cemetery and Memorial on the outskirts of Paris. At one point in his speech, Trump thanked by name six American Second World War veterans who were in attendance.

“You look so comfortable up there under shelter, as we’re getting drenched,” Trump said as he saluted the veterans. “You’re very smart people.”
 And good luck with the tariff wishful thinking.




People are douchebags:

Police are looking for three suspects after a 66-year-old man was reportedly assaulted while standing vigil at the cenotaph in downtown Chatham.



But ... but ... global warming!:

There are too many polar bears in parts of Nunavut and climate change hasn't yet affected any of them, says a draft management plan from the territorial government that contradicts much of conventional scientific thinking.



Apologising to fascists who demand cakes or else is a sign of weakness:

A member of Alberta's United Conservative Party is apologizing for making what he says was an unintentional comparison between the rainbow LGBTQ pride flag and swastikas in a speech this weekend.

They will still come after you.



A great deception? NO!:

North Korea is moving ahead with its ballistic missile program at 16 hidden bases that have been identified in new commercial satellite images, a network long known to U.S. intelligence agencies but left undiscussed as President Donald Trump claims to have neutralized the North’s nuclear threat.



(Merci beaucoup)




Sunday, November 11, 2018

Sunday Post

 



 
With enormous losses of life on all sides, Canadian troops still managed to route the foe at Amiens:

The Last Hundred Days began on August 8, 1918 with an all-out attack on German positions in Amiens. By day’s end, Canadian soldiers had obliterated German defences and advanced an incredible 13 kilometres. It was the most jaw-dropping allied victory ever seen in the First World War up to that point. For context, it had taken months of fighting and 500,000 dead to gain only eight kilometres of ground at Passchendaele. Up until this point, many First World War battles had followed a predictable pattern: A lengthy artillery barrage followed by fixed-bayonet human wave attacks across no-man’s-land. At Amiens, Canada rolled out a strategy that prioritized speed and unpredictability above all else: Tanks, motorized machine guns, cavalry, storm troopers and intricately timed artillery barrages all thrown at the enemy in a dizzying tidal wave of force. Erich Ludendorff, who by this time had become the effective military dictator of Germany, referred to August 8 as the “black day” of the German army. As the Canadian breakout continued relentlessly into the autumn, Canadian Corps commander Arthur Currie would estimate that one quarter of all Germans on the Western Front were being shot at by Canadians. When German troops would sweep back into France in 1940, their new strategy of Blitzkrieg would be an eerily close carbon copy of the tactics that Canadians had used to evict them from France 21 years earlier.

Read the whole thing.



Obama made a mess he expects Trump to clean up:

Obama administration officials have drafted a letter acknowledging their responsibility for initiating U.S. involvement in Yemen’s destructive civil war and calling for the Trump administration to halt America’s role in the conflict.



Speaking of Trump:

President Donald Trump paid tribute to the "great warriors" who died in World War I as he visited a US cemetery in France, a day after drawing fire for cancelling a similar trip due to bad weather.

Speaking at Suresnes cemetery in the western Paris suburbs Trump hailed the "great warriors who gave everything for family, country, God and freedom".

Trump, who is in Paris to attend ceremonies marking the centenary of the end of the war, also paid tribute to the French and other Allied troops killed in "one of the bloodiest conflicts in human history".

Hailing the "American and French patriots" who served in the war, he said: "It is our duty to preserve the civilisation they defended and to protect the peace they so nobly gave their lives to secure one century ago."

The US leader was heavily criticised for cancelling a trip to Belleau Wood battlefield in northern France on Saturday due to the rain, with some critics accusing him of disrespecting America's war dead.

On Sunday, he braved the continuing wet weather to remember those who braved "rain, hail, snow, mud, poisonous gas, bullets and mortar" fire in pursuit of a "great, great victory".

There can be many things said about why Trump initially did not visit the cemetery where American war dead lay.

There are many things that could be said about Trump's initially not visiting the American war dead. I will be saying none of those things.  This is because people who criticise Trump would be railing against him for any reason. They wouldn't care to parse through or even articulate the reasons for their huffy opposition or anything against it.

One cannot skim through the news without some sort of obvious bias against Trump. Nothing he says or does makes anyone happy. It's the infantile contrarian nature of the post-modern First Worlder who clearly has nothing better to do than to criticise the man who bumped out the favoured choice of some for president, the sour, old hag with political, emotional and even physical baggage.

No leader should be above criticism but no leader should constantly subjected to it, either. When I call Justin Trudeau a useless douchebag who inherited his dad's office and has no accomplishments to his name, that is because he IS a useless douchebag who inherited his dad's office and has no accomplishments to his name. Feel free to disprove my assertion. Trump is not a perfect man and there are things for which he deserves criticism. But contrary nay-saying isn't criticism. It is the level of grade school insolence that cannot mimic just criticism if it tried. Were the conditions unsafe for landing a helicopter in France? Maybe. If Trump simply did not wish to be moistened by some drizzle, then he would deserve scorn, the same scorn that should be heaped on Barry for forgetting that his great uncle liberated a death camp and then used it as a political ploy.

However, if one enjoys being contrarian, I'm sure that kind of fact-finding and nuance has no place in the debate and ought not be mentioned if one doesn't want strangers banging on the door in the middle of the night.



Speaking of useless douchebags:

For someone who repeatedly claims it’s the Conservatives who will fight dirty in next year’s federal election, while he’s going to take the high road, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau should look in the mirror.

Because these days, he’s sounding more and more like a sanctimonious twit. ...

Challenge his government’s decision to transfer the vicious murderer of eight-year-old Tori Stafford from a prison to an indigenous healing lodge, as the Conservatives, and in particular Lisa Raitt did on behalf of Tori’s outraged father, and, according to Trudeau, it’s because they’re “ambulance-chasing politicians”.

That was a day after Trudeau criticized “the politics of personal attacks” — saying he would take the high road in the next election. ...

(Sidebar: this "ambulance-chasing" and these easily escapable spas.)

Ditto when Global TV broke the story that Statistics Canada was after the banking information of 500,000 Canadians, when Trudeau dismissed opposition concerns about potential violations of confidentiality by going off on an irrelevant rant that Stephen Harper cancelled the long-form census.
That continued right up to the moment when the Trudeau government reversed course again, after the privacy commissioner said he hadn’t been informed by Statistics Canada of the scope of what it intended to do.

Now the project’s on hold pending review.

Question Trudeau’s carbon tax and either the prime minister or Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna will accuse you of not caring about saving the planet for your children.
Question his government’s “anti-Islamophobia” motion, and you’re a bigot.

Question federal policy on irregular/illegal border crossers and you’re a racist.

Trudeau doesn’t even have to be challenged on something before telling us about how morally superior he is.
For example when, out of the blue, he said immigrants who come to Canada care more about it than people who were born here, because natural-born Canadians take Canada for granted.

No one would have objected if Trudeau had said we’re all equal as Canadians no matter where we were born, or when we arrived in this country. But that wasn’t his message.

It was another example of Trudeau’s constant need to preen, to portray himself as morally superior not only to the opposition parties, but to Canadians who don’t share his views on political issues.

Again, if my conclusion that he is a useless douchebag with nothing to his credit other than division, financial ruin and sliminess is wrong, feel free to disprove that conclusion with evidence.




And now, "Dulce et Decorum Est".


Friday, November 09, 2018

For a Friday

For this gray, drizzly day ...



It's just money:

If you thought the carbon tax being charged was bad enough, how do you feel about paying the GST/HST on top of that carbon tax?

Reports first emerged last week that the feds would charge the tax on the tax. A finance department official saying that the feds wouldn’t see a “significant rise” in GST revenue from charging the tax on the tax.

“Most consumers would have spent the related funds on other GST/HST taxable goods and services,” said Jack Aubry in an emailed statement.

So there we have it, the feds will charge the GST/HST on the carbon tax.
 
**

Building a sixth Arctic patrol ship to add to the five originally commissioned from Irving Shipbuilding for the Royal Canadian Navy will cost taxpayers $800 million — double the price-tag of each of the other vessels. The Liberal government announced the construction of the sixth Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, or AOPS, last week after a push by Irving and its employees for additional work. The construction of the sixth vessel shows the government’s commitment “to maximizing stable employment” for Irving while providing equipment to the navy, Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement Canada, said in a statement. Each Arctic and Offshore Patrol Ship, or AOPS, costs $400 million. But the decision to build another such vessel comes with additional costs since the federal government is stretching out construction of that ship and a number of others to allow Irving employees to retain their jobs until a new fleet of larger warships, called Canadian Surface Combatants, is ready for construction.  

**

Federal Liberal fundraisers are urging supporters to build up Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s campaign war chest for looming social media attacks by Ontario Proud, “founded and directed by alumni of Stephen Harper’s government” known for “lowering the bar for political discourse.”

Oh … scary! 

But to anyone familiar with Ontario politics, the Trudeau Liberals’ manufactured panic over what amounts to yet another political advocacy group, is laughable and reeks of hypocrisy.

After all, Ontario Proud, founded by Jeff Ballingall — breathlessly described by CP as “a digitally savvy former Harper-era Conservative staffer and erstwhile employee of the short-lived Sun News Network” — only arrived on the scene for the 2018 Ontario election, where limits were finally placed on how much money third-party advocacy groups could spend.

Prior to that, the union-financed Working Families Coalition and other unions spent millions of dollars in the 2003, 2007, 2011 and 2014 Ontario election, running vicious attack ads that “lowered the bar for political discourse” against PC leaders Ernie Eves in 2003, John Tory in 2007 and Tim Hudak in 2011 and 2014.

That directly benefited the Liberals — who won all four elections — because they were able to target their advertising budgets on running positive ads extolling first Dalton McGuinty and later, Kathleen Wynne.

The amount of money involved was staggering.

In the 2007, 2011 and 2014 Ontario elections, labour unions, according to the Globe and Mail, spent $15.4 million on third-party advertising, much of it attacking the PCs.

That was 94% of all third-party advertising during those elections.

Why - that sounds divisive, as divisive as calling people appalled at putting a convicted killer into a spa "ambulance-chasers" and whining like a little pansy to an ignorant American audience that everyone is ganging up on him. If only that audience knew what a douchebag the aforementioned pansy really is.



It's just a national industry:

A U.S. federal judge in Montana has issued a ruling that will delay the pipeline, which was supposed to be a key part of getting Canada’s oil to markets.



It's about time:

New Brunswick’s new Tory government has taken power, with a 17-member cabinet that includes four women and the party’s lone francophone MLA as deputy premier.



But ... but ... Singapore!:

North Korea and the United States are trying to set a new date for a meeting between their top officials, Seoul's foreign minister said Friday in response to skepticism about momentum in denuclearization talks.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was supposed to meet Kim Yong-chol, a senior aide to the North's leader Kim Jong-un, in New York this week.

But it did not occur amid reports that Pyongyang demanded a delay in the talks.



Canada marks the anniversary of the withdrawal of UN forces from the Republic of South Korea, a nation still at war with its northern neighbour:

The armistice of the often overlooked Korean War, from 1950-53, celebrates its 65th anniversary this year.

In fact, the ceremony to mark “the third bloodiest conflict in Canada’s military history,” according to Veteran Affairs, was already held back in the summer at Brampton’s Wall of Remembrance on the armistice signing date of July 27.

There was also a poster unveiling by Canadian Korean War Veteran and artist Ted Zuber (who passed away on Oct. 30) in Ottawa in April of his painting Freeze.

Still, every Nov. 10, the Korean Veterans Association hold an evening event in Ottawa in conjunction with ceremonies in Busan, South Korea, where it is the next day, Nov. 11.

“The Korean War, over the years, has come to be a little overshadowed because there was about 26,000 Canadians — that’s a whole lot of men and women who went to serve in the Korean War,” said Veteran Affairs Education Officer Alan Banman, adding 516 of them died with some buried in South Korea.


 
And now, one hundred years after the armistice was signed, we still remember.

(source)            



Rare photos from the First World War.

Original caption:
(source)

The marine named her
(source)





Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Mid-Week Post

Your mid-week cloud cover ...




Watch as NOTHING gets accomplished in the next two years:

Democrats took control of the House of Representatives in the midterm congressional elections Tuesday, while Republicans won more seats in the Senate to strengthen their majority hold.

Also - says the moron who screwed up NAFTA in the first place

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau isn’t ruling out the possibility that Canada will ratify its new North American trade deal with the United States and Mexico even if U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum exports are still in place.



It's just money:

Encana’s announcement last week that it was acquiring Texas-based Newfield Exploration may be good news for the Calgary-based company, but it is not good news for Canada. It is the most recent chapter in an unfolding story of capital flight from the Canadian energy sector. First the big internationals, and now Canadian-based firms like Encana, are moving their operations and/or capital budgets out of Canada and relocating their money to the U.S. and elsewhere. And it’s no mystery why. Thanks to government policies adopted by the governments of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta premier Rachel Notley since their respective elections in 2015, Canada has become a less and less competitive place to invest and do business.


To wit -  “There’s a range of experiences when people come home. We know that actually someone who has engaged and turned away from that hateful ideology can be an extraordinarily powerful voice for preventing radicalization in future generations and younger people within the community.”:

More than 200 mass graves containing between 6,000 and 12,000 bodies have been found in Iraq from the time of ISIL’s three-year reign, U.N. investigators said Tuesday.
**

An Islamic State-linked media outlet says a Canadian man was behind the terror group’s highest-profile cyber attacks, including the embarrassing takeover of the Twitter account of the U.S. military’s Central Command.

The Canadian fighter, who is said to have been killed by a drone strike in Syria, also allegedly penetrated bank computers and used the “spoils” to fund their fighting and hacked the U.S. Department of Defense, airports, international media organizations and the accounts of “hundreds” of U.S. soldiers.



Moral qualms, blah blah blah:

The federal government has dramatically slowed the approval process for weapons exports in recent years, the result of controversy over arms deals with Saudi Arabia and other nations with poor human rights records.

Canada could always just stop dealing with Saudi Arabia.




Why would Justin give refuge to Asia Bibi after having let in Syrian migrants instead of rape-gang-targeted Yazidis, awarded $10.5 million to Omar Khadrvoted for M-103, tripped over his feet to apologise for a crime that turned out to be a hoax and has basically been a d!ck to anyone who points out the obvious about ISIS?:

In 2011, just weeks before his assassination, Shahbaz Bhatti met Stephen Harper in Ottawa. The prime minister offered him refuge in Canada, knowing that his life was in mortal danger at home. Bhatti was grateful but declined, choosing to go back home to his likely death.

I would expect that the Canadian High Commissioner in Islamabad has already been instructed to offer the Pakistani government safe passage and immediate asylum in Canada for Bibi, her family and her lawyers. She is in desperate need. It would be an honour for Canada to grant her safety and liberty.



A man whose callous disregard for human life cost the lives of three children will not be getting day parole:

A drunk driver who killed three young children and their grandfather in a crash north of Toronto three years ago has been denied parole.

A panel with the Parole Board of Canada says Marco Muzzo has not addressed his alcohol misuse, and denied him both day parole and full parole.


 
Because the Japanese can read the writing on the wall and it says that the Chinese are coming:

Why then would the Japanese people support a militarization of their country? We need look no further than the bellicose growth of Chinese nationalism and the recent moves by the Chinese to dominate the South and East China Seas in the way that the United States dominates the Caribbean. The Chinese have made no secret of their ambition with the creation of artificial islands that now host air bases, anti-aircraft missiles, and Chinese “coast guard” vessels that though mostly painted white (as coast guard vessels generally are), mount naval-style guns on their foredecks.

Japan is heavily dependent on sea transport, especially for fuel oil and natural gas, that comes from the Middle East via the Strait of Malacca and the Formosa Strait. With the U.S. under President Donald Trump adopting an increasing isolationist tone, Japan, like Australia and other nations in the region, will have to put more assets into their own defence.



And now, 325 year old fortifications found in Quebec City:

Archeologists in Quebec City have discovered the first fortifications built in 1693 to protect New France from a major attack, in what is considered the first reinforced palisade of that era.

The discovery was made by an archeological firm, Ruralys, that was overseeing renovation work on a building on Sainte-Ursule street, after a worker found a small piece of wood sticking out of the black sand.

"We knew we had to [be cautious] because usually we don't find wood that deep in the soil," said archeologist Jean-Yves Pintal, who was knee deep in the mud on the day the site was found.

The team carefully dug deeper and found the wooden structure was nearly 20 metres in length — the first tangible proof of the rempart palissadé de Beaucours, that is featured in history books as the predecessor to the stone fortifications that still surround the old city to this day.

It's the first time that a reinforced palisade of that kind is found," Pintal said Tuesday at a news conference organized by the Ministry of Culture and attended by Premier François Legault, as well as Quebec City Mayor Régis Labeaume.


Monday, November 05, 2018

For a Monday

A lot going on ...




A year before the federal election and the smell of desperation is strong in the air:

In a rare example of cross party support, the Conservatives & Liberals have said they will support an NDP motion to ensure that money allocated towards Veterans Affairs is actually spent on Veterans every year, instead of being unspent and going towards general revenues.

Previous reports revealed that the Trudeau government had left nearly $400 million in money allocated toward Veterans unspent since winning power, which is a total disgrace. The Conservatives also left over $1 billion in money allocated for Veterans unspent.


This money:

Between 2002 and 2010, 270,000 Canadian Veterans were screwed out of $165 million in disability and pension payments.
According to a recent report by Murray Brewster, “The mistake was uncovered by the veterans ombudsman’s office, which has worked with the federal department for over a year to get it to confirm the mistake and make amends, federal sources said Monday. The error was made in the monthly indexing calculation on disability awards and pensions and is believed to have started as far back as 2002.”
Veterans Affairs failed to consider the provincial tax credit for individuals in their calculations. As a result, many Veterans received far lower monthly payments than they should have.

Sadly, over 170,000 of the Veterans who were shortchanged have since passed away.

Justin is skating on thin ice right now. With defeats out east, it's not like he can afford to further anger and marginalise people who lost limbs for this country.

Or anyone else, for that matter.




Ahmed Hussen is a known liar:

Hussen was caught in numerous lies, including about the number of illegal border crossers, claims that Ontario government Minister Lisa MacLeod called illegal border crosser names, and falsely saying that there were no numbers showing illegal border crossers using up shelter space in Toronto.

Now who is "fear-mongering", Ahmed?




North Korea also has a "universal" healthcare system:

The legal battle for private medicine being conducted by Vancouver’s Dr. Brian Day in the case of Cambie Surgeries Corporation vs. (the attorney general of) British Columbia is a heroic struggle Day has been leading for many years to improve Canada’s health-care system. He founded the plaintiff company and it is one of the largest private medical facilities in Canada. He has 100 doctors and dental surgeons and he owns almost 10 per cent of it. Cambie Surgeries performs over 5,000 surgical procedures a year and has revenues of over $10 million a year. Day says that private clinics do more than 60,000 operations in B.C. and save the provincial government $300 million each year. Day dismisses the government arguments of the need for uniform treatment as piffle: there are exemptions for workers’ compensation, the armed forces and RCMP, and even federal prisoners, and others. To the charge of only favouring private medicine to make more money himself, Day replied that he could make much more if he took one of many offers to move to the United States to practice medicine, but has chosen to continue “improving the provision of surgical services in B.C. and not maximizing (his) financial well-being.”

Also - this North Korea:

North Korea has warned it could revive a state policy aimed at strengthening its nuclear arsenal if the United States does not lift economic sanctions against the country.



It's just money:

The federal government spent $23 million buying more than 600 brand-new cars for use at this year’s G7 summit — and is now struggling to sell them off second-hand.

**

As Rideau Hall prepares a “thorough review” of the lifetime expense program for former governors general, the National Post has learned Adrienne Clarkson’s expense claims since leaving office are substantially higher than revealed by the public accounts, in some years reaching the program’s annual spending limit of $206,000.

** 

A UN report which the Trudeau government has cited has even said the tax needs to be 100 times higher – which would absolutely destroy the entire Canadian economy and send our standard of living to that of a third world disaster country.
**


Imports and exports both fell, and Canada ran a trade deficit for the 21st consecutive month.

In September, exports fell 0.2%, while imports dropped 0.4%.

Canada’s trade deficit in September hit $416 million.



It had been originally thought the streak of trade deficits was broken in August, when the government initially said there had been a surplus of $526 million. However, that was since revised to a deficit of $551 million, keeping the streak of deficits going.




I'm sure this is nothing to worry about:

Canada’s unemployment rate fell back to four-decade lows, but sluggish wage increases and slumping exports offer little evidence the economy is running hot enough to warrant accelerated interest rate increases.

Statistics Canada released jobs data Friday that showed modest employment gains, but with a shrinking labour force and the slowest wage gains in a year. A separate trade report continued to show sluggish flows in September, with both exports and imports recording back-to-back monthly drops.



But other parties don't have access to my banking information

All of the parties keep detailed personal files on literally millions of voters. Unlike last year’s scandal over Cambridge Analytica’s use, on behalf of its political clients, of information illegally scraped off of Facebook users’ pages, the data here is acquired legally, which is to say the law has been written in such a way as to allow it.

A bit disingenuous there, Mr. Coyne. 




There should already be measures to keep trespassers off of one's property:

The Saskatchewan throne speech last month included a reference to changing trespassing laws to “better address the appropriate balance between the rights of rural landowners and members of the public.”



Finally. Grassroots action: 

About a hundred people crowded the steps in front of the Peace Tower on Parliament Hill Friday chanting “Send her back” and “Life means life,” in the hopes of convincing the federal government to transfer convicted murderer Terri-Lynne McClintic out of an Indigenous healing lodge and back to a maximum security prison.

Canadians should do this all the time.




F--- you. You know what you did and why you did it. You can stay there:

“My husband didn’t want to stay in the U.K., he wanted us to live in an Islamic country. The plan was to go to Saudi Arabia but then he decided on Syria. I had no choice but to follow him,” she claims.


 
Go and get a beverage and a snack and watch this commentary on The Gulag Archipelago. Go on now.


Thursday, November 01, 2018

Halloween Week: Coda

All frightening things must come to an end ...


 
But not all:

“Former officials say there has been less talk publicly than there should have been about privacy implications — something they expect will change as Statistics Canada moves on initiatives far larger than the banking information project.”

Quelle surprise.



How many people support this?:

A government document quietly posted online confirms what many have long suspected: that the government is eyeing raising the federal carbon tax beyond the current ceiling of $50 per tonne.

On Wednesday, amendments to the federal carbon tax legislation were posted on the Canada Gazette – the government’s official newspaper – and the document describes how the already controversial $50 per tonne price that comes into full effect in 2022 may be just the beginning following a five-year review that could very well call for steep increases.

“The overall approach will be reviewed by early 2022 to confirm the path forward, including continued increases in stringency. The review will account for progress and for the actions of other countries in response to carbon pricing, as well as recognition of permits or credits imported from out countries,” reads the text. This text does not make its way into the actual legislation but is rather part of the “regulatory impact analysis statement” that explains the amended legislation.

Rebates don't cover GST/HST but I am sure Canadians knew that:

The federal government's impending national carbon price could bring in more than $250 million in GST revenues next year but Ottawa doesn't intend to account for those funds in its rebate program.

A spokesman for Finance Canada says the government doesn't believe Ottawa will see a "significant rise" in its net GST take even though the GST will be charged on top of the carbon levy.

"Most consumers would have spent the related funds on other GST/HST taxable goods and services," said Jack Aubry in an emailed statement.

Businesses can offset any additional GST they pay on the carbon levy through existing input tax credits, Aubry said.

Individuals will pay the GST on top of any carbon price built into the cost of goods and services, either directly on fuels like gasoline or natural gas, or indirectly as businesses pass on their carbon levy costs to consumers.


Just as their household debt will climb and climb.



It gets better and by better, I mean worse:

Tony Will, the CEO of CF Industries – a U.S. nitrogen producer based in Illinois – says the Trudeau carbon tax makes it tough for him to invest in Canada, and will likely shift production to China.


His favourite country. This China:

China’s treatment of citizens in the majority-Muslim region of Xinjiang has veered from hostile to totally totalitarian.

Far from simply seeking integration, China has put up to one million people in mass internment camps, depriving them of any bit of freedom they once had.


And the internment camps are spreading.

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, satellite images show that the “footprint of 28 interment centers has increased significantly since 2016.”


That sounds familiar:

Kang Cheol-hwan, a North Korean defector, was confined at the Yodok concentration camp, otherwise known as Camp 15, used to imprison so-called enemies of the state.

It is hidden in a mountainous region around 110km from the capital, Pyongyang. ...

Last year, Amnesty International released satellite imagery of the country's network of political prison camps, stating the government - now under the rule of Kim Jong-un - was continuing to maintain and invest in the facilities.

The report documented torture, rape, the killing of children, deliberate starvation and executions in the camps.


Also - #MeToo extends only so far:

Women remain particularly vulnerable in a country where the police, market inspectors and soldiers are predominantly male. While Kim has pledged to focus more on developing North Korea’s economy, the black markets that have become a vital source of income for many families are one place where sexual violence is rampant.

Oh Jung-hee, a trader interviewed by Human Rights Watch, described the prevalence of abuse where market guards and police “considered us [sex] toys”.

“It happens so often nobody thinks it is a big deal,” she said. “We don’t even realise when we are upset. But we are human, and we feel it. So sometimes, out of nowhere, you cry at night and don’t know why.”