Ok, it's official, someone found Marc Emery's stash. A grocery tax with the proceeds directed to farmers? What are they smoking? The last thing we need in Canada is more taxes or spending for that matter. How about a reduction in taxes, eliminate provincial trade barriers and encourage the Doha round of talks?
OTTAWA - Canadians should be forced to pay a new tax on groceries to help cash-strapped farmers struggling to make ends meet, according to a new report on sustainable agriculture.
Immigration rules should also change so newcomers to Canada are encouraged to live in isolated, rural areas, much like government policies a century ago, according to a report from the Agricultural Institute of Canada.
You can find the report on the Agricultural Institute's website. It mentions that the report was commissioned to generate discussion and debate. Well - I'd say they succeeded.
Many of you may have seen the CPC Action Centre appearing on blogs and websites recently. Below is the code so you can add the Action Centre to your blog or site. It's a simple cut and paste.
Many people don't think they have the time to get actively involved in campaigns. Little things like the Action Centre, Letter Writing campaigns etc, are easy ways to get involved and help make a difference.
This is pretty rich coming from Dion as a Liberal. Notwithstanding the fact that they are directly responsible for the recent surge of the BQ in Quebec, a Quebec Liberal certainly shouldn't be lecturing the rest of Canadians on this issue. The Liberals and BQ are mutual parasites in Quebec, feeding off each other. The Liberals wrap themselves in the flag and campaign as the only federalist party capable of holding Canada together, while the BQ campaign as the only party to stand up for Quebec. Without each other, both parties would be in serious trouble in Quebec. If Mario Dumont ever decides to start running ADQ candidates federally, there would be some interesting results in Quebec.
My question for Dion, if you believe in a fairer Canada, why won't the federal government give New Brunswick the same childcare deal that it just signed with Quebec? The feds have been trashing Lord for weeks now for failing to sign a deal under their terms. Then this, and Premier Lord's response. Who's fueling unity issues?
...If the Canadian political class continues to portray Canada as a fragile country, a loose union, always close to disintegration at the first difficulty, how can we hope that the separatist debate will end in Quebec? There will always be some disagreement down the road, some source of frustration that the separatist movement will describe as the "new" proof that Canada does not work. And what will be the counterargument? To find an agreement that proves Canada works — at least until the next disagreement? That is a never-ending cycle
One of the worst examples that I have seen about how separatism is trivialized occurred during the last federal election when I discovered that some NDP candidates in Quebec were acknowledged separatists. Today, I ask NDP leader Jack Layton to declare that from now on a commitment to Canadian unity is a sine qua non condition to be an NDP candidate. This is the minimal respect a national leader owes to Canada.
Blogging Party of Canada Bloggers unite, it's our country, lets use the best of the top three parties agendas to create our own, truly Canadian agenda. Check under the "Master Plan" button for the latest debates and The Master Plan......
BTW, I think he's looking for some pumpkin pics for some strange reason. Carved of course.
Coming from an area that is starting to rival the Niagara region for it's wineries, this decision is devastating. The local wineries are a large part of the regional economy from both a jobs and tourism perspective. It's bad enough having to fight Mother Nature, as most agricultural operations do, but to square off with the McGinty Liberals - good luck.
These are just some of the wineries in the Essex County region - Pelee Island Winery, D'Angelo Estate Winery, Colio Estate Wines, Sanson Estate Winery, Viewpointe Estate Winery, Erie Shore Vineyards, Wagner Estate Winery, Smith & Wilson Estate Wines, Aleksander Estate Winery and Muscedere Vineyards.
Industrial assessment - that's just ridiculous. Nothing more than a tax grab for cash starved municipalities. By reversing the tribunal ruling McGinty has delivered more money to the municipalities without having to actually give any money from the province. A win/win as far as he's concerned - until the wineries start going out of business.
Are estate wineries farms or industries? The Ontario government doesn't seem to know.
In June, the province's Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Tribunal ruled that the winemaking area of the tiny but prestigious Thirteenth Street Winery near Jordan Station should be considered a farm building for tax purposes. The decision overturned the long-standing policy of assessing winery buildings at the much higher industrial rate -- despite the fact that the Assessment Act granted farm status to any building "used to manufacture wine from grapes grown on the farm lands the building is located on."
Now, in a sudden decision that has left Niagara winemakers reeling, Ontario's Finance Ministry has overruled the tribunal charged with protecting the province's agricultural resources, and rewritten the disputed regulation to make the bucolic wineries industrial again.
"Frankly, it's abhorrent," says Norm Beale, the owner of Peninsula Ridge Winery and chairman of the Wine Council of Ontario. "The province changed the regulation during the parliamentary recess and behind closed doors, with no consultation or debate. I'm amazed they think they can get away with it -- this is the behaviour you'd expect of a Third World country."
Great spread in the Windsor Star today on the history of the Windsor-Detroit tunnel. The tunnel celebrates 75 years on Tuesday. Fred Martin, a "$25-a-week Salvation Army captain" with vision and determination was the driving force behind it's construction.
We could sure use someone like him today. At the rate we're going, we'll be lucky if the new border crossing is built in the NEXT 75 years - especially if we have to wait for any help from supposed home town boy Paul Martin.
Fred W. Martin, a $25-a-week Salvation Army captain "inspired by God" to build the Windsor-Detroit tunnel, stood proudly before a cheering crowd along the riverfront on a crisp November day in 1930.
The tall, imposing man was hailed during the tunnel's opening ceremony as the driving force behind a project few dreamed would happen.
For Martin, the construction of the world's first international underwater tunnel was the crowning glory of a career that began in an Alberta pool hall and ended four years after the tunnel was built when he died penniless and largely forgotten.
In light of your attempts to reduce the "democratic deficit" we request that the estimated $9 billion currently contained in government foundations be opened to the scrutiny of the auditor general.
Edit: It certainly didn't take long for the moonbats to come out. #319 on the petition - 319. Shanda Deziel creates fake stories Maclean's is supposed to report news, not create it out of a worthless online petition that had been forgotten by the right-wing wacko that created it. Want a story? Write about the bigotry openly displayed on Free Dominion by Conservative Party riding execs.
Just a note to Mr. 319 - if you want to play duelling posts on internet forums as a basis for judging a party - I've got plenty of Babble baubles for you.
...If I were calling for a minister's resignation because he was slow to respond to an issue, wouldn't I prefer that the issue in question be one that my own party hadn't ignored until last week?
A little research was in order. Listed below are various releases, statements and questions. I only included the ones that specifically mentioned water conditions on reserves. There are many others that deal with infrastructure and general deplorable conditions on reserves and the Liberal's inaction.
From Windsor-West NDP MP Brian Masse's recent householder:
The Liberal government wants to give another corporate tax cut to, among others, oil and gas companies during this time of record profits and high prices at the pump.
Yes, I support tax cuts for oil and gas companies
No, I do not support tax cuts for oil and gas companies, invest my money in:
A national auto policy
Maybe if you had had the courage of your own convictions to stand up for Windsor in the last budget vote we would already have a solution for the border. Instead, you and your NDP cohort Joe Comartin decided to toe the party line and vote for the Jack Pack agenda.
With each passing day more and more Windsorites are realizing that voting for a protest party like the NDP get you exactly that - lots of protest and no action.
Brian Masse stated on a local radio interview that they have been trying in vain to get the Liberals to listen to them - "they just don't listen to us".
Why would they? They just have to negotiate with Jack and Buzz. After that, everyone will fall right in line like good Jack Packers should.
Jack Layton has a problem his NDP predecessors had no more luck solving. Layton, the look-at-me leader of a party no one is looking at, needs to bring down soon a Liberal government he also desperately needs to make work for as long as possible.
That's the NDP dilemma. It's political insanity to let Paul Martin time the coming election to Liberal advantage. But the best and perhaps only way for Layton's party to improve its prospects is to convince voters that minority government is good government.
If nothing else, that helps explain some of this week's political theatre. Attempting to repeat his spring success of wringing from Martin $4.6 billion for NDP priorities, Layton is threatening to end this Parliament unless Liberals stem the rising tide of private health care.
Up to a point, that's good stuff for an earnest party struggling for visibility. In linking his continued support to a policy important to NDP rank-and-file as well as to most Canadians, Layton is maximizing his limited influence.
In a better place, results would be better. Voters would reasonably conclude the real small-l liberal party is the NDP and in the next election would endorse it with more seats and clout.
But this is Ottawa and history suggests the future is about to unfold like the past. Snuggled up close to Liberals, Layton's NDP is in danger of being hugged to death.
Wednesday night is my only chance for a few hours off to spend with friends, but I didn't want to disappoint this week and not have a video for Thursday morning. Thankfully, fellow BT blogger Stephen Taylor came up with one of his own from Wednesday's question period.
Now here's a Letter to the Editor for you! (en francais)
The early bird gets the worm. The election campaign started last May and continues today. Don't wait till the writ drops to start voicing your opinion. Start today and write often. Let your voice be heard.
Here's a great example from today's Windsor Star.
Letter to the Editor
Masse and Comartin better dust off resumes Windsor Star Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Re: The Paul Martin Jr. Expressway. Brian Masse and Joe Comartin voted to prop up the Liberals. Joe Comartin said, previous to his confidence vote, that the Liberal government was bordering on criminality. Brian Masse, in his recent letter to the editor, said that the Liberals were supposed to have an auto strategy in place by the end of November 2004.
Eddie Francis and others saw the writing on the wall; the federal Liberal government was going to ram the nine-point plan down our collective throats. But Brian Masse and Joe Comartin both voted to prop up the Liberals in May of this year.
Brian Masse and Joe Comartin were elected to represent the people of Windsor and Windsor-Tecumseh respectfully, not to toe the NDP line.
Brian Masse is quick to point out that he sent a letter to Industry Minister David Emerson about the potential loss of the Ford casting plant. They both knew Windsor was in big economic trouble and yet they voted to prop up this tired, old, visionless government.
Gord Henderson tells us to make no mistake. Rape is not too strong a term to describe what the feds have in mind for Windsor with their intention to have the E.C. Row, our main crosstown commuter route, transformed into a mobile parking lot, to be violated by tens of thousands of diesel-belching 18-wheelers rumbling between Montreal and Manzanilla.
It was up to Brian and Joe to stop this nightmare from even having a chance of happening. They voted for and with the Liberals and not for the people they represent.
It's time for someone to stand up for Windsor and Essex County. Brian and Joe, it's time to blow the dust off and touch up those resumes. The election is around the corner.
Now here's a situtation where the Government could have deployed the CF's DART team to effective use. Instead, we have deployed DART to Pakistan at great expense when most NGO's claim the aid could be provided by them at a fraction of the cost, over a longer term.
Boil water advisories for over two years? A treatment plant built downstream from a sewage lagoon? Opposition MPs have been calling for action on this issue for weeks now in the House of Commons. The Liberal response? Bluster and rhetoric.
For this situation to develop the way it has is almost unbelievable. For it to have reached this crisis point is inexcusable.
October 25, 2005 TORONTO -- More than half the people living on a remote northern Ontario reserve where the threat of contaminated water has been a daily fact of life will be evacuated, Ontario's minister for aboriginal affairs said Tuesday.
David Ramsay said the province plans to fly roughly 1,000 of the Kashechewan First Nation's 1,900 residents off the reserve on the western shores of James Bay starting late Wednesday.
"It is a medical emergency so these people really need to be removed," Ramsay said after a two-hour meeting with native leaders and Premier Dalton McGuinty.
The reserve, 450 kilometres north of Timmins, Ont., has had chronic problems with its local water treatment plant and is currently struggling to deal with a water supply that has been laced with potentially deadly E. coli.
Roughly half of the reserve's residents are also suffering from skin infections such as scabies and impetigo -- conditions that are exacerbated by the high levels of chlorine being used to disinfect the water.
The quote on the content page of the Information Commissioner's report could serve as the definition of Paul Martin's Liberal government. "The struggle for information is, first and last, a struggle for accountability"
Under Paul Martin's tenure, the Privy Council Office has gone from a grade of C to F in responding to Access to Information requests. Just another case where Paul Martin's actions or inaction, speak louder than words.
"My basic view in terms of government is complete openness and transparency. I have followed that right from the very beginning." (Paul Martin Press Conference, January 28, 2004)
Annual Report Information Commissioner 2004-2005
"The struggle for information is, first and last, a struggle for accountability"
Jeremy Pope, "Access to Information: Whose Right and Whose Information" In Global Corruption Report 2003 at p. 8
F = Red Alert " So many major deficiencies that a significant departmental effort is required to deal with their resolution or many major persistent deficiences that have not been dealt with over the years. "
We've all seen those funny little flash games floating around the net, you know, the ones you NEVER play at work, only at home. One of my favourites has always been the Penguin Swing.
In case anyone hasn't noticed, I have been playing with videos over the last month or so, and have found them to be very effective. Windows Movie Maker is a great little tool.
Photoshop, Java and Powerpoint are other avenues for people to express themselves.
The Challenge: create something with a Conservative political theme. Let your imagination run wild! It can be a video, game, Powerpoint presentation, Photoshop picture etc. Any medium with the goal that it can be easily hosted online and distributed via email. Content need not be in English. Any language is acceptable and is encouraged. (please provide a translation for non-English content)
The Prize: $100.00 (If anyone else would like to sponsor the contest with either a cash prize or donated goods please drop me a line. I'd like to add individual category prizes along with an overall prize)
The Rules: 1. Open to anyone 2. Submissions are to be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org 3. Purpose of the contest is to either highlight CPC policies or to expose shortcomings of the other parties.
I will make all submitted material available online for everyone to view. Winners will be determined by the votes of Bloggingtories. (to be eligible to vote, you must be a member of the Bloggingtories at contest close) Contest will close Monday January 30th at 12 noon EST. Voting will take place over the course of the week and the winner will be announced on Monday, February 6th.
Spread the word. Post messages about this contest on other blogs and forums. Let your friends and family know. Attending a CPC board meeting in the next while? Do you have a local EDA newsletter or website? I'd really like to achieve a wide distribution to encourage submissions from all.
Write a letter to the Editor of your local paper. Ask questions about the Liberal's mismanagement of $2.8 billion dollars of your tax money. Ask about the free ride for lobbyist friends of the government.
I'll put my tinfoil hat on for this post. A little "what if" ing here.
The actions of Paul Martin over the last year have shown us he would do virtually anything to maintain power. Billions in spending increases, Belinda's cabinet post, troops to Darfur to try and buy Kilgour's vote, buying off Jack Layton and the list goes on.
As it stands now, Martin faces going into the election carrying the baggage of Sponsorship, Dingwall and whatever else emerges between now and then. At best, he will emerge with another minority government. That is not acceptable. Anything less than a majority will spell the end of Martin as leader of the Liberal party. For a party used to winning, they'll not suffer long with a two time loser.
With all the above taken into account, I believe Paul Martin would sell his soul, or anyone else's to remain Prime Minister. So, starting from that premise...
* Paul Martin and Jack Layton are conducting talks on Health Care. A day or two after the first Gomery report has been issued, they'll emerge with a "new" plan to save that venerable Canadian institution. Proof positive that only the NDP and Liberals are in Ottawa to "make government work" Much back-slapping and press-releasing will result.
* Health care talks having gone so well, Martin and Layton will continue to explore cooperation on other issues.
* Christmas break and a few well placed leaks
* Late January, early February Martin and Layton will once again emerge to announce they have forged a new deal that will change the face of Canadian politics and launch a new era of democracy in Canada. There are many forms this may take, but I'll give you one.
* A five year plan with a fixed election date. Liberals/NDP will not run candidates against sitting MPs of the opposite party or in marginal ridings for each party. A formula of sorts will be drafted to take care of the nitty gritty. The Liberals would have to accept the NDP's Kyoto plan, a few other concessions, a commitment to proportional representation within the five years and 1/3 of the cabinet being NDP. The NDP would have to live with some corporate tax cuts, a few law and order morsels and five more years of Paul Martin. End result would most likely be an NDP/Liberal coalition majority government.
* After five years, an election based on proportional terms.
Ok, after all that my head hurts so I have to take off the tinfoil. Feel free to borrow the hat, jump in and have some fun. It's Monday.
I've been in a bit of a blogging funk recently. Not that nothing's going on - things certainly are - but that I'm feeling a little guilty about not really getting into the political stuff. I am, after all, a member of the Blogging Tories, and that membership brings me benefits like a really great Google ranking. But I'm not really doing my part in keeping up with the great content provided by most of the Blogging Tories.
I guess I've discovered that I like reading political blogs a heck of a lot more than I like trying to be one, though I still have something I want to say from time to time.
I know there are certain members in the Blogging Tories who would rather apply strict standards about the frequency and content of entries for admission to the group, but I know there are also some who, like me, rarely touch on political subjects.
So what place is there on the blogroll for people who are definite supporters, but perhaps not the most vocal supporters? I'd like to hear thoughts from other members of the Blogging Tories. Honesty is encouraged.
Drop in, say hello and let Tamara know what you think.
For those that missed the dinner, here is the video. When I have time later on this morning evening, (long night at work last night - time for bed) I will edit the file into individual segments for download.
(Video had to be removed due to bandwidth issues - I'm almost out! Didn't expect the file to be quite as popular as it was. All of the performances are now available through the CTV link. )
This is an .asf file - it will play in Windows Media Player. The clips I'll post later will be .wmv files.
OTTAWA (CP) - In a corner of Senator Marjory LeBreton's office sits an arrangement of fresh white roses, daisies and lilies from Brian and Mila Mulroney.
The card is marked: "The sun will shine again."
The sun is obscured by a tragedy for LeBreton that seems to have no end.
The story is of unspeakable loss, anger, sorrow and bizarre coincidence that has shattered relationships between intertwined blue-blooded political families which will likely never heal.
LeBreton, who worked as Mulroney's appointments secretary, lost a daughter and grandson nearly 10 years ago to a drunk driver named Matt Brownlee.
Brownlee is a nephew of Bonnie Brownlee and Bill Fox, the husband and wife team who worked as press secretaries for former prime minister Mulroney and his wife, Mila.
Matt Brownlee, who served seven years for drunk driving causing the deaths of Linda LeBreton-Holmes and her 12-year-old son, Brian, in suburban Ottawa was again charged this month with drunk driving and driving without a licence.
The new charges against Brownlee, 33, have not been proven in a court of law but have re-opened old emotional wounds.
"I was stunned at the news," said the Conservative senator known for fierce loyalty to Mulroney and being the former prime minister's eyes and ears in Ottawa.
That crunching noise you heard the other morning wasn’t just the sound of your kids chowing down on their cereal. It was the sound of some senior New Democrats eating their words as it came to light that they bend the rules when it comes to raising money for their party.
Manitoba’s New Democratic Party has been accused by the provincial Tories and Liberals of cheating the NDP’s own election finance law that bans union and corporate donations. As NDP officials apparently told Elections Manitoba Monday and admitted to the Winnipeg Free Press later in the week, unions are collecting money from their members on behalf of the NDP and cutting them a single cheque, a process known as bundling.
Although party secretary Wayne Copeland says the practice is rare — he said it amounted to only $9,000 of the $739,531 the party raised in 2004 — it’s still not cricket.
Write a letter to the Editor of your local paper. Ask questions about the Liberal's mismanagement of $2.8 billion dollars of your tax money. Ask about the free ride for lobbyist friends of the government.
■ The bad habits of the decade-old multi-billion dollar TPC began in 1996 are now claimed to be all in the past. But as a watchdog on all things TPC, I doubt it.
Industry Canada corporate funding branch to attract lobbyists has not been fixed, despite the spin cycle
The bad habits of the decade-old multibillion dollar Technical Partnerships Canada (TPC) began in 1996 are now claimed to be all in the past.That’s what the latest Industry Canada Minister, David Emerson, would have us believe. But as a watchdog on all things TPC, I doubt it.
The number one promise by the Minister in the “new”TTP (Transformation Technologies Program) is that all lobbyists will be better behaved and will all register.As well, not one of them should get direct tax-paid commissions or other “service”or “success”fees from companies they represent winning federal monies. Not to register as a lobbyist is a criminal offence and the TPC rules state that companies agreed to forbid contingency fees.
Still, for most of the lobbyists who did follow TTP rules, millions were made in going after the $2.7-billion pie for “corporate research innovations.” That will continue, but, nowhere are all those lobbyists’ earnings required to be registered.
The Industry Minister defends the use of lobbyists as if government personnel are not good enough to properly explain and shepherd through company applications.
So far, too, the winning companies using unregistered lobbyists charging contingency fees are quite content to quietly pay back Ottawa that hundreds of thousands of dollars portion of what they paid out.
Those lobbyists publicly identified as being under investigation at this point are Neelam Makhija, of NJM Initiatives Inc., and David Dingwall and his Wallding International.
So lobbyists minus any improper dealings can expect more, not less work as TTP expands federal corporate grant-giving as approved by the Martin Cabinet. And Industry Minister Emerson still is in charge of the federal administration of Canada’s weak lobbyists’ regulation rules.
The number two promise made is for a more accountable administration of the “enhanced”Industry Canada corporate research development program.
How is this to be so, for instance,when the junior bureaucrats handling the B.C.- based companies that allegedly won millions for which Neelam Makhija received commissions for are absolved of any wrongdoing? And why, to date, is there not more focus on more senior officials with knowledge and responsibilities or relationships with unregistered lobbyists?
Meanwhile, a few of the staff in their role as technical advisers at TPC’s sister program at the National Research Council— IRAP (Industrial Research Assistance Program) are being investigated about “irregularities”with business clients.The Industry Minister is responsible for both programs.
Previous Consulting and Audit Canada individual company compliance audits on TPC projects have at times questioned certain companies’ claims at job creation, royalties and use of funds received.
And heavily-censored documents indicate that many companies subsequent to signing agreements had them amended one or more times.Who benefited fromsuch amendments?
The number three promise calls for better procedures. Minister Emerson says he would set up a panel or panels of experts to assess corporate requests for public monies.
But TPC already used experts, and it’s likely some of the quality and biases of their work warrants looking into.
The underlying problem with TPC organizational procedures—that one secret draftdocument that I obtained under the Access to Information Act states—is that the application process was far from fair or rigorous.
It took me months to correct Industry Canada’s initial denial and concealment that TPC had an initial prioritization committee that looked at incoming company summary proposals. One case involved that committee’s quick review of a company’s rejected proposal that was using Makhija as a consultant, turning it into a go-ahead prospect.
Viewing bits and pieces, not stamped confidential, of the three-stage TPC ad hoc review committees of company applications hardly raised my confidence in the program’s decision-making approval process and checking procedures.That lax administration gives lobbyists a wider opening to ply their trade.
The impression left is of a sloppy program. And indeed, the Auditor General’s Office is now having a second look at the TPC program.
Number four is a promise that the new TTP (Transformation Technologies Program) program will not get into worrying about repayment of loans anymore and be more of a straight subsidy program with more funds going to help smaller companies.
Some transformation! And Ottawa reluctantly admits its recovery loan rate through repayments of only some $125.3 million up to the end of September is way off. As well, Industry Canada readily allows companies not to release their repayments or repayment schedules.
It looks like millions will never be repaid despite former industry minister Allan Rock’s belief that the TPC program would break even on its investments.
Meanwhile, the government has accepted the advice of the high-powered firm Sussex Circle, which said to turn the fuzzy repayable loan program into a money payout one. Ottawa would get no equity, royalties, or, much else.
The TPC program has been notorious at giving a disproportionate amount of funds to Central Canada and to larger firms such as Pratt and Whitney, Bombardier, Rolls-Royce and Canada Steamship Lines.
It’s yet another matter whether TPC actually worked or was responsible for bringing on new cutting-edge technologies. The same ailing aerospace/defence sector that needs shoring up will still be the biggest clientele under TTP.
Lastly, the number five promise is that TTP will be much more transparent.
Well, as someone who has sought information in the last decade on the TPC program and been regularly stalled and denied much data and has been provided with halftruths, I’m not convinced that will happen.
Nor do I expect all the past poor practices and wrongdoings will ever come out in all the audit work underway.Two recent Industry Canada-commissioned forensic auditors (Kroll Lindquist Avey, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton) do confirm that not all key decisions and transactions in the TPC program can be traced and documented.
It’s hardly an encouraging sign that the integrity of the access process won’t be further compromised when access materials sought were held back until Minister Emerson made his political announcements on TPC program changes.
And no one is saying that commercial confidentiality claims that render so much data sought secret will not remain, even if some more information is to be posted on the internet.
There is then little substantial change underway in this highly-political corporate giving program. It’s basically a case of business-as-usual for past and future corporate winners in an expanded program. That’s what industry and government bureaucrats and former ministers have wanted all along. And the more inefficiently- run the program, the better for lobbyists.
The shaky levees have been breached.
The repairs are temporary and patchy.And yes, the flood of monies will continue to flow.
For the last decade, Ottawa investigative researcher Ken Rubin has monitored the TPC program implementation and twists and turns, with various stories appearing in the media using documentation that he ferreted out. See related columns on P. 8, 37, 38. email@example.com The Hill Times
Contact(s): Nadeem Esmail, Senior Health Policy Analyst & Manager, Health Data Systems The Fraser Institute, Tel (604) 714-4549 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Release Date: October 18, 2005
Vancouver, BC - Waiting times for medical treatment have stalled at their peak levels of about 18 weeks, according to The Fraser Institute’s 15th annual survey, Waiting Your Turn: Hospital Waiting Lists in Canada, released today.
The total waiting time for patients between referral from a general practitioner and treatment, averaged across all 12 specialties and 10 provinces surveyed, fell slightly this year; decreasing to 17.7 weeks in 2005 (from 17.9 weeks in 2004).
“Canadians should not be fooled into thinking that this small reduction in overall waiting is a good-news story. It is important to remember that these waiting times are the second-longest that Canadians have ever experienced and that they exist despite record levels of health spending and in spite of numerous commitments made by provincial and federal governments,” said Nadeem Esmail, senior health policy analyst at The Fraser Institute and co-author of the survey.
“Canadians should also not expect any dramatic improvement in waiting times resulting from the latest federal-provincial agreements regarding waiting lists. The long waiting times for medically necessary services are a symptom of a much greater problem: a poorly-designed health care system,” he continued.
The Fraser Institute’s annual Waiting Your Turn survey documents the extent to which queues for visits to specialists and for diagnostic and surgical procedures are being used to control health care expenses.
Fraser Institute - Government Failure in Canada, 2005 Report (en francais)
Kudos to the Fraser Institute's Jason Clemens, Director of Fiscal Studies and Niels Veldhuis, Senior Research Economist, authors of the latest study from the institute. Take a few minutes to download and read the report - it's worth it.
They could have called this the "History of the Liberal Party, 1992 - 2005"
Release Date: October 17, 2005
Vancouver, BC - Canadians have been shocked by the revelations of the Gomery Inquiry but these scandals will occur with predictable regularity unless government begins to prioritize and reform its activities, according to Government Failure in Canada, 2005 Report, released today by The Fraser Institute.
The study summarizes 284 cases of federal government failure, ranging from simple waste to cases of misrepresentation, based on reports from the Auditor General between 1992 and 2005.
“The sponsorship scandal is not a one-off event,” said Jason Clemens, the Institute’s Director of Fiscal Studies and co-author of the study. “We studied report after report from the Auditor General over the past fourteen years and found case after case involving waste, misrepresentation, incompetence, and program failure.”
Kinda makes you wonder what else is waiting in the wings!
WOW! The last time I did a welcome list was mid-August and it certainly looks like we've got a whole new bunch of BTs. Either I've been asleep at the switch or a whole herd has slipped under my radar in the last while.
If I've missed your name , just add your blog in the comments section and I'll edit the post. If I've put you here and you're not new - oh well, enjoy the extra hits!
Peter's Point - A Vancouver Islander's view of the rest of Canada..
Fables & Foibles - David Simpson's Blog on Life, Trinity-Spadina, Cooking Writing, Conservative Party, Kensington Market, Politics, Humour, Gaming, Toronto and Canada. Now without any annoying photos of nude actresses.
For new BT members, don't forget to ping when you post to move your name up the blogroll. While you're at it, visit Canconv and add your blog to the Canadian Conversation. Visit the Canconv Help section for details on how to link your blog directly into the Canconv system.
Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to recruit two more people to blog - we'll give you till next month!
Blog on everyone, and once again - Welcome to the Blogging Tories!
Arabian Dissent Random rants from a 23 year old Arab-Canadian on, American, Canadian and Middle Eastern Politics. Here come the shockers: I'm a big supporter of George W. Bush and his anti-terrorism efforts. A strong believer in small-government and Reaganomics (while residing in the most left-wing location in North America, Quebec), and a supporter of the Conservative Party of Canada. Started this blog hoping to refute lefty myths on Economics, Conservatism, Terrorism, the Middle East and the US.
I've been neglecting the HAH!s of late, so it's time for another.
Many would have you believe that the CPC's recent policy announcements are nothing but gimmicks and media stunts. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The party went through a long, involved, open and democratic policy process. The policy announcements that Stephen Harper and the caucus have been making are a direct result of that process. A case in point is the party's recent announcement on Fisheries.
The Conservative Party has announced their plan to exempt the first $500,000 of the value of qualified fishing property when it is transferred within a family. This is part of the Conservative plan to stand up for the fishing communities and families who work hard, pay their taxes and play by the rules.
Under the Liberal government, fishing assets are taxed as capital gains when transferred from one generation to another. This has been unfair to fishing families and communities as farmers and woodlot owners in the same situation do not receive the same treatment.
v) A Conservative Government would ensure that the current capital gains deferral available to farmers and woodlot owners when capital property is transferred to a child is extended for the commercial fishery.
This affects fisherman not only on Canada's both coasts but the thriving Great Lakes fishery as well.
Funny thing. I don't remember seeing a press release announcing this report. I know that Industry Canada is still capable of churning them out - here-here and even one right for my own backyard -here...
Even better, how about the one about the nasty telemarketers. Maybe they can join the University Lecture circuit, although it may become a little crowded over the next year.
Aeterna Laboratories - TPC funds received: $29.3 million Political Donations 1996-2004: Liberals $15,841.72
BiochemPharma Inc - TPC funds received: $80 million Political Donations 1996-2004: Liberal $155,388.59, Progessive Conservative $3723.00, Canadian Alliance Reform $5,000.00, Bloc Québécois $673.52
Ballard Power Systems-TPC funds received: $29.4 million Political Donations 1996 - 2004: Liberal $42,699.81, Canadian Alliance Reform $6400.00
Bombardier - TPC funds received: $202.9 million + $79.4 million from another Industry Canada program Political Donations 1996-2004: Liberals $782,890.87, Progressive Conservative $189,168.78, Canadian Alliance Reform $51,000.00
Neurochem Inc. - TPC funds received: $7.9 million Political Donations 1996-2004 (includes Power Corp, a part owner of Neurochem): Liberals $385,363.66, Progressive Conservative $288,022.69, Canadian Alliance Reform $75,000.00
5 companies - $349.5 Million of TPC money, plus another $79.4 from Industry Canada
Conservative Resources Updated 14 Oct, 05 (en francais)
* New - Angus Reid Feeds - Our Polls & Research archive—the world’s largest free-access online public opinion database—includes surveys from every continent on topics that include approval ratings for heads of government, voting intention studies and reviews of public sentiment on a wide range of global issues. Our entries go beyond simply recording numbers and percentages. Each poll is located, translated if necessary, and accompanied by a brief analytic review.
* New - Angus Reid Feeds - Our Democracy database features the Election Tracker, a unique online publication that monitors democratic conditions around the world, by reviewing background information, assessing the latest campaign news and events, describing trends in voting intention, and reporting on the outcome of a particular ballot.
* New - Angus Reid Feeds - Our Trend Analysis section reviews shifts in worldwide public opinion, examines the effect of policy decisions on the electorate, and focuses on the upcoming challenges for leaders and parties.
* New - Many of the EDA Yearly Financial returns are now being posted online at Elections Canada. It never hurts to know what kind of resources you are facing. Using the returns you can work out a rough estimate of where each EDA stands.
*New - Conservative Campaign Academy - Fall Schedule. Contact your local EDA or Candidate if you are interested in taking part in this, or you can sign up directly online.
They've added three new courses: Handling the Media, Field Organization Poll Captains, Special & Overseas Ballot. Courses run from October thru Dec.
Take advantage of these excellent resources while there is still time.
* New - CPAC Podcasts. For all you political junkies, looks like CPAC is going to start podcastingsome of it's shows on the 27th of September. Audio only and details are sketchy, but it's a start.
BasecampHQ - Basecamp is an online project management tool. Perfect for organizing and running local campaigns. You can sign up for a free account and be up and running in minutes. The only limitation on free accounts is that they don't offer file sharing. For $9 US per month, you can get a basic account that allows you to manage 3 different projects and includes file sharing. Base Camp offers Milestones, Messaging, To-Do lists, File Sharing, Unlimited users, ICal calendar sync, secure RSS syndication, secure hosting. VERY easy to setup and use.
Conservative Campaign Academy - run by Richard Ciano, Party Vice-President. The Campaign Training Series for all Candidates & Campaign Workers. Training sessions conducted in a state-of-the-art campiagn office located in Bradford, Ontario - 45 minutes North of Toronto on Highway 400
How'd They Vote? - aims to be a non-partisan website which provides a variety of in-depth information on the operations of the Canadian Parliament, specifically, how our politicians vote and what they've said. We take the Hansards from the parliament website, and extract information on bills, members of parliament, votes, and speeches.
Add Canconv to your blog - Andrew has come up with some more improvements for his Canconv blogging resource. Take a few minutes and join the conversation.
CanConv 1.08b Beta - (Canadian Conversation) - a distributed conversation tracking application. Designed to track blog posts relating to Canadian topics. You can submit blogs and posts relating to Canadian topics. Subscribe to topic feeds or to all recent content. Designed by Andrew Anderson of Bound by Gravity.
Donation Research Tool - designed and hosted by Andrew at Bound by Gravity. Elections Canada seems to have downgraded some of their search capabilities, so into the breach comes Andrew with this great little tool. It even works faster than the EC search - go figure!
Google News RSS Feeds - use the power of Google to create custom RSS feeds. Helps you keep an eye on specific topics, keywords. For eg, I have created feeds for Harper, Martin and Layton, Conservative, Liberal and NDP. Helps catch some interesting articles, at times.
The establishment of a research base for the study of online politics, especially with respect to American campaigns and elections.
The design, testing, refinement, and promotion of appropriate standards of practice for the conduct of online campaigning.
The creation and public promotion of an online public space where good campaign practices and democratic values may thrive.
JustBlogit - great little Firefox ad-on. Gives you right-click blogging capability. Has 5 custom spots available. I have one programmed so that I can easily add posts from peoples blogs who don't have a Canconv button added. Right click, copy permalink, Right Click - add To Canconv. Very easy to use.
Babelfish - Alta Vista's site translation tool. LocalVictory.com - a virtual treasure trove of election related articles and advice. Make sure you sign up for the newsletter while you're there.
Mambo - Mambo is one of the most powerful Open Source Content Management Systems on the planet. It is used all over the world for everything from simple websites to complex corporate applications. Mambo is easy to install, simple to manage, and reliable. For CDN political examples of Mambo see VoteRick.com and RahimJaffer.com . Check out MamboForge.net for hundreds of components and modules that you can add to a Mambo installation to extend it's capabilities. A very robust and easy to use product. Newspaper Listing - from Neale News. If you've got a letter to the editor just bursting to get out, head on over here and let it loose. Make sure you take a look at the Letter Writing Style Guide before putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. (Microsoft Word format)
Radio Listing - from Neale News. Give those radio hosts a piece of your mind. (just a piece, mind you, don't give it all away!) Check out the Call In Guide to prepare yourself for the show. (Microsoft Word format)
The head of Ballard Power Systems Inc. has unexpectedly left the company, casting a shadow of uncertainty over the money-burning fuel-cell maker.
Dennis Campbell has left Ballard effective immediately, barely three years after he was recruited from the United States as a leader who could supposedly transform it from concept company to commercial producer.
“The board's decision was that this was the right time for a leadership change,” Ballard chairman John Sheridan, who is to fill in as interim CEO, said Thursday. The search for a replacement will likely take six to eight months, he said.
Reached at home in West Vancouver, Mr. Campbell, 57, acknowledged his exit was the board's idea, but said the timing was also right from his perspective. “I want to do something more challenging that fits with my aspirations,” he said.
“So I'm eager to do that, and eager to get back to the States,” Mr. Campbell said.
Ballard's shares, which have fallen from more than $200 apiece since 1999, dropped on the news.
I've been wondering if Ford might drop their shares in Ballard as part of their North American restructuring. Daimler Chrysler is coming out of this year in pretty good shape and well positioned for the future. Hopefully, that bodes well for Windsor.
1996 - $85,076.47 Liberal Party 1997 - $86,069.28 Liberal Party 1998 - $76,584.21 Liberal Party 1998 - $10,000.00 Liberal Party 1999 - 0 2000 - $100,502.68 Liberal Party 2001 - $142,503.80 Liberal Party 2002 - $142,359.89 Liberal Party 2003 - $139,795.22 Liberal Party
1996 - $25,223.12 Progressive Conservative Party 1997 - $37,089.60 Progressive Conservative Party 1998 - $35,000.00 Progressive Conservative Party 1999 - 0 2000 - $2,000.00 Progressive Conservative Party 2000 - $25,000.00 Progressive Conservative Party 2001 - $25,918.10 Progressive Conservative Party 2002 - $25,693.06 Progressive Conservative Party 2003 - $13,244.90 Progressive Conservative Party
1998 - $4,080.00 Canadian Alliance/Reform Party 1999 - 0 2000 - $40,000.00 Canadian Alliance/Reform Party 2001 - 0 2002 - 0 2003 - $7,000.00 Canadian Alliance/Reform Party