Saturday, April 30, 2005

Canadian Utopia or Opiumtopia?

For all those who wish they lived in Canada's "open and free climate" imagine your tax dollars literally going up in smoke like this.

Alarming News has this story about free crack pipes being given out in Ottawa to prevent users getting infections. Read it [here].

Canadian and German Spy Justice vs. Islam

Confidential German sub plans offered to covert Mountie in coffee shop

JIM BRONSKILL Sat Apr 30, 9:30 AM ET

(CP) - The military confidences of a European country were peddled to an enigmatic man posing as a Chinese agent in a most unlikely setting: a tranquil southern Ontario coffee shop.

An RCMP officer assuming the role of a Chinese spy nabbed a Toronto-area woman when she agreed to sell him pages from a German submarine manual, The Canadian Press has learned.

The remarkable meeting in the neighbourhood cafe was part of an elaborate sting operation that turned Michaela Gile's life upside down and led to her eventual conviction in Germany for attempted treason.

It also shattered any faith Gile and her husband had in the Canadian justice system.

The eye-opening case also sheds some rare light on the undercover activities of the RCMP's secretive national security division.

The international espionage saga began in 2003 when Gile, a German-born translator, had a payment dispute about her work on a confidential manual for the weapons system of the U-212A submarine, equipped with six torpedo tubes.

Designed in Germany, the advanced vessel is renowned for a quiet propulsion system powered by hydrogen fuel cells that helps it elude enemy subs.

--- Ed - Shattered her husband's faith in the justice system? Wah? ---

... But the caller was persistent, saying he was just around the corner. He told her to look for an Asian man in a suit at a nearby coffee shop.

Gile agreed.

Incredibly, the agent who met her was sporting the red, yellow and blue of the RCMP on both his tie clip and wristwatch, Gile recalls. She would recognize them as the Mountie colours only much later, after she had been arrested, when she spotted them on a sign.

At one point, the undercover officer, apparently noticing the gaffe, tugged his sleeve over his watch. ..

--- Ed - can you imagine more inept security work than wearing the RCMP colours? ---

...Gile spent a difficult Sunday night behind bars. At a bail hearing the next day Crown lawyer Ruthanne Bowker confirmed that an undercover Mountie had met her at the coffee house.

Meanwhile once back in Germany...

...Gile spent weeks in a small cell with three other women at a prison in the western city of Koblenz... Gile received a suspended sentence of one year, meaning she would not have to serve any more jail time...

Read the whole thing [here].

And Now for Something Completely Different:

Yemen: Young mother faces execution for crime committed when 16

A 21-year-old woman, the mother of a toddler, reportedly faces execution on Monday (2 May) in Yemen, despite being only 16 when the death sentence was passed, said Amnesty International today. The Yemeni Penal Code expressly prohibits the execution of anyone convicted of crimes committed when they were under 18. She had reportedly been tortured to force her to confess, and has since maintained her innocence.

Amina Ali Abduladif only escaped the firing squad in 2002 because the executioners noticed she was pregnant, according to reports from her lawyer.

She was reportedly raped by one of the guards at al-Mahaweet prison. As a result she gave birth to a child, who is with her in Sana'a Women Central prison and is now very nearly two years old.

Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen said:

"We have only four days to stop the execution of Amina. I hope the people and government of the UK will join Amnesty in its campaign to prevent this unnecessary death.

"Amina was only sixteen when her husband was killed. She maintains that she is innocent and that her confession was tortured out of her.

If you want to fight with one hand time behind your back, the outcome is predictable.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Happy, Birthday Sadaam!

Yes, its the big guy's birthday! I wonder what he's got planned? Perhaps a stretch in the yard. ..

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Moussaoui - Aint so Tough Now, Huh?

Moussaoui Pleads Guilty in Terror Plot

By Jerry Markon, Washington Post Staff Writer

Zacarias Moussaoui pleaded guilty yesterday to taking part in a broad al Qaeda conspiracy that resulted in the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, saying Osama bin Laden personally instructed him to fly an airplane into the White House...

The balding, bearded Moussaoui, 36, dressed in a green Alexandria jail jumpsuit, blasted his attorneys, calling one of them a "Judas," and said he expects "no leniency from the American" when his case comes to the sentencing phase. As he was being led from the courtroom by a team of security officers, he shouted in a thick accent, "Lord! God curse America!"

(The brave warrior of Allah, right? Read on Ed.)



Moussaoui, while indicating that he had initially asked for a sentence of death, yesterday vowed to fight to save his life.

"I have significantly changed my position following the advice I receive from you," he told Brinkema. "I will not apply for death. . . . No, Moussaoui will fight every inch against the death penalty."

Ah, not so quick to face up now that the gavel is coming down, eh? There is further talk of taking him to Germany to testify against a Moroccan who was released due to a lack of evidence. Clearing your throat to start singing like a bird...

Full story [here].

Mark Steyn, the Gomery Inquiry and more

Banned in Canada

Monday, 2 May 2005
Mark Steyn

A decade or so back, I was in London and switched on the radio and the top story on the BBC News that morning ran as follows: “A Conservative MP has been found dead in . . . unusual circumstances.”

That’s annoying enough--like those people who rush up to you and say, “You’ll never believe what I just heard . . . no, wait, I’m not supposed to tell you, forget I mentioned it.” But worse was to come. The news bulletin ended and the anchor on the morning show came on and he had with him the chairman of the Tory party, Norman Fowler, and an equivalent panjandrum from Labour, and they proceeded to discuss for 15 minutes the unusual death of the aforementioned MP without giving us a hint as to the aforementioned unusual circumstances. “These are the kind of, ah, circumstances that could occur to, ah, any member in any party,” said Sir Norman, anxious to make plain that whatever the unusual circumstances were the unusualness of them was strictly non-partisan.

I had a headache by the time the segment ended. Here were a bigshot BBC host plus two political heavyweights having a public conversation in which they all knew what they were talking about but the listening millions were entirely in the dark and the conversation was being conducted in a code explicitly intended to keep them in the dark.

Well, the fate of poor Stephen Milligan, MP didn’t stay veiled in obfuscatory unusualness for long. He had been found dead on his kitchen table naked except for a pair of lady’s stockings on his legs and a third one tied round his arm, a satsuma and amphetamines in his mouth, and on his stomach traces of what the FBI crime lab during their analysis of Monica’s black dress took to calling genetic material. The honourable member had died of “auto-erotic asphyxiation,” and that’s too good a story for the Fleet Street tabs to go along with any of this genteel “unusual circumstances” hooey. Mr. Milligan’s notoriety has faded now, but I’ve never forgotten that initial BBC tiptoe round his two lips and the memorable contents within. The political and media class carrying on a private conversation based on their privileged access to facts the citizenry were unaware of seemed to sum up everything that’s wrong with public discourse in too many democratic societies.

You may have noticed something similar is going on with the rulers of our own diseased Dominion right now. I don’t mean that the Liberal Party of Canada has been found dead of auto-erotic asphyxiation with a couple of pharmacologically enhanced Timbits in its mouth and Sheila Copps’ fishnets on its limbs, though it may yet come to that. What I mean is that everybody’s talking about something without really talking about it at all. During the Gomery commission’s investigation into the Liberals’ waste of even more of our money than usual, someone is alleged to have allegedly alleged something. Allegedly. And I can’t put it any plainer than that--or not without the RCMP kicking the door down.

Read the rest to get to the best part. The Western Standard newspaper - very interested. La Presse in Quebec - owned by Paul Demerais, the virtual Godfather of the Liberal Behemoth.

Read it [here]

Sunday, April 24, 2005

China under the radar

Japan PM Apologizes for WWII Aggression

By AUDRA ANG, Associated Press Writer

Friday, April 22, 2005

(04-22) 09:56 PDT JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) --

Japan's prime minister apologized Friday for his country's World War II aggression in Asia in a bid to defuse tensions with regional rival China, but a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said the apology needed to be backed up with action after Japanese lawmakers made a controversial visit to a war shrine.

Just hours before Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi apologized, a Cabinet minister and more than 80 Japanese lawmakers visited a Tokyo shrine to Japan's war dead. China's Foreign Ministry expressed "strong dissatisfaction over the negative actions of some Japanese politicians" in visiting the Yasukuni Shrine, which also honor's Japan's executed war criminals.

So why is this a story and why do I even care? Because this is a highly orchestrated campaign by China to take pressure off themselves and put pressure on regional rival Japan. And why is that important? Because China is poised to become the premiere world power and eclipse the United States. They deal with Sudan for oil, Venezeula for oil, do a huge amount of trade with the US and Canada. Why is this bad? Because they are a totalitarian state and the world is asleep in not seeing that the two biggest powers are on a collision course. The day will come, and it will be a surprise.

Perspective

I'm shocked to have read this at Yahoo news today. A succinct and historically correct account of Hitler's final days and how WW2 ended. The only reason I'm posting about the subject is that it is important to put things in perspective and context. To have freed a country of 25 million people with 1500 casualties is astounding and unprecedented in world history and yet the MSM sees the war in Iraq as a catastrophe. The Red Army lost 78,000 dead in the final assault on Berlin over the course of a week. Freedom ain't free.

Full story [here].

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

The Perfidious French

France's role in Lebanon
By GEORGE SASSINEUNITED PRESS INTERNATIONAL
Paris, France, Apr. 18 (UPI) -- France, Lebanon's former patron, is trying to avoid internationalizing the Lebanese crisis, which erupted following the Feb. 14 assassination of former prime minister Rafik Hariri.
France is opposed to an international conference on Lebanon, to sending international forces to its former mandate or dispatching foreign observers to oversee the general elections scheduled for May. The move, it worries, would push Lebanon out of France's political orbit.
French President Jacques Chirac, Hariri's close friend and ally, convinced U.S. President George W. Bush last June to co-sponsor U.N. Security Council Resolution 1559, aimed at forcing Syrian military and intelligence personnel out of Lebanon. He was also the first to call for an international investigation into Hariri's assassination.
Resolution 1559 called for the withdrawal of foreign forces from Lebanon but did not name Syria, which has forces in the country; the dismantling of foreign and local militias, in reference to Hezbollah and armed Palestinian factions; for expanding the state's authority over all Lebanese territory; and for deploying the Lebanese army along the border with Israel. The resolution divided the Lebanese political world.


Read the story [here].

Okay. So the hopes and dreams of freedom and democracy for millions of Lebanese people should be shelved to ensure that France maintains its influence in the Middle East. Lets just be clear about this. While there is a realpolitik aspect that can't be discounted, since France lost their other best friend when Sadaam was pulled out of a hole in the ground, lets call a spade a spade. The French are heartless cowards.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Juxtapositioning

The war in Iraq is an immoral invasion that only serves Haliburton and oil interests from Texas says the Left. No war, Bushitler!



The discovery of two sites with up to 7,000 bodies may be used to help build tribunal cases against former Baathists accused of mass murder
BAGHDAD — Two mass graves that appear to contain the remains of as many as 7,000 people killed by Saddam Hussein’s government have been discovered in southern Iraq, an Iraqi government minister said Friday. The new government may use the finds to help build its case against alleged war criminals, including Hussein, Human Rights Minister Bakhtiar Amin said.

Full story [here].

7,000 civilians. Let's see, that's about 4 times as many brave servicemen who gave their lives for freedom. It's also a drop in the bucket compared to the estimated 300,000 Iraqis who were murdered by Sadaam's rein and found in other mass graves. Add in the estimated 1,000,000 people who lost their lives in the needless Iran-Iraq war, and it makes the 100,000 lost during Gulf War I seem like a walk in the park. Peace, indeed.

The Elephant in the Room

Corriveau denies funnelling money

Brian Daly Canadian Press

Friday, April 15, 2005 MONTREAL -- Jacques Corriveau, accused of funnelling at least $1.1 million in sponsorship money to the federal Liberals, denied any role in the alleged conspiracy Friday and shifted the heat back to his accuser, ad man Jean Brault.
"No,'' Corriveau replied when he was asked by Bernard Roy, counsel for the sponsorship inquiry. "Never.''
The retiree suggested Roy direct his questions to former Liberal fundraiser Alain Renaud, who Brault says was a party operative planted at Brault's Groupaction firm to steer cash to the party.
"The one who was closest to Mr. Brault was Mr. Renaud,'' said Corriveau. "I had no such relations with Mr Brault.''
Brault has implicated Corriveau and promoter Luc Lemay in the wide-ranging scheme that allegedly used Groupaction to secretly funnel the money to the party's debt-ridden Quebec wing.
Brault has testified he paid Corriveau, a friend of former prime minister Jean Chretien, $494,000 under one bogus contract, and alleged Corriveau sent the cash to the party.
But Corriveau denied under cross-examination from Liberal party lawyer Doug Mitchell that he sent any of his income to the Liberals.
He added Brault approved every one of the payments under the contract. Corriveau added the payments were compensation for wresting major sponsorship deals from a competitor, Groupe Everest.
"The formula of the bills was given to me by Mr. Brault, as well as the amounts that appear on the bills.''


Read the whole thing [here].

The elephant in the room is the unspoken understanding in Canada that french Quebec politics is a cesspool of corruption and backroom dealings the likes of which the United States hasn't seen since Prohibition era Chicago. Try to fathom how this would have played out in the US if this had been Bush and Texas and millions going to "friends of the government" in Texas.

The absolute worst part is that due to the altar of multiculturalism and (even worse) multilingualism, we cannot stand up and say a word about this without being shouted down as bigots, anti-french and right wing fools. I'm not against french people, I'm against theft and treason.

More Kyoto Nonsense

Fiction fuels global warming

Myth of Jurassic proportions has world mired in false State of Fear


By Licia Corbella -- Calgary Sun


Since facts and science can't seem to debunk the faulty notion of global warming being caused by humans, perhaps fiction can.

Virtually every month, new reports by the world's top climate scientists debunk the correlation between increasing CO2 emissions and the warming of the Earth.

Just this past week, as the federal Liberal government announced its plan (if you can call it that) to meet its impossible Kyoto targets, a weighty group of North America's top climatologists, paleoclimatologists, astrophysicists and oceanographers launched a video that points out the scientific flaws behind the premise that so-called greenhouse gases (GHGs) are behind global warming.


Indeed, they even question whether the earth is warming at all and point out that, even 25 years ago, scientists were predicting global cooling!

The video, put out by the University of Calgary in co-operation with The Friends of Science Society, quotes: Dr. Tim Patterson, Professor of Paleoclimatology at Carleton University; Dr. Ian Clark, Professor of Hydrogeology and Paleoclimatology at the University of Ottawa; Dr. Vincent Gray, climate scientist and official IPCC reviewer from New Zealand; Dr. Sallie Baliunus, astrophysicist and climate researcher in Boston; Dr. Tad Murty, a former senior research scientist for Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans, past director of the National Tidal Facility of Australia and a current researcher at Carleton University; and Dr. Timothy Ball, Canada's first climatology PhD and a recently retired professor of Climatology at the University of Winnipeg, amongst others.

But the release Wednesday of their highly informative and science-based video received not a peep by the media sheep who continue to parrot ignorant politicians and environmentalists who are preparing to waste billions of dollars on something that is not a risk while real environmental problems get swept aside and human catastrophes, like the AIDS epidemic in Africa, remain ignored and underfunded.


Read the whole thing [here].

Only in Canada, you say? Pity. A pity that the Canadian public are so ill-informed on such a major issue by our lazy, liberal media. Kyoto also neatly fits into the generally liberal Canadian tendency to want to feel good about something and perhaps cut a cheque. Global warming is one of the least understood issues in the modern world but the media have decided which side they are on and further research is unworthy of reporting.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Al Reuters and Israel

Israeli Soldiers Kill Militant, Straining Truce
World - Reuters
By Atef Sa'ad
NABLUS, West Bank (Reuters) - Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian militant in a raid in a West Bank refugee camp on Thursday, straining a de facto truce already battered by renewed violence.
The killing aggravated tensions in the region following a Texas summit between Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and President Bush intended to provide impetus for Israel's planned withdrawal from the Gaza Strip this summer.
The circumstances of the shooting in the Balata camp, a militant stronghold near the West Bank city of Nablus, were in dispute.
The Israeli army said soldiers tried to arrest a wanted man suspected of plotting to carry out a shooting attack in Jerusalem, and shot him only after he opened fire on them.
Palestinians said Israeli undercover troops jumped from a car and started shooting without provocation, killing the militant in an ensuing gunbattle.
The dead man was identified as Ibrahim Isneiri, a member of al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, part of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' ruling Fatah faction.
"This is a provocative attack by the Israeli army in order to foil the whole attempt to reach a peaceful solution," Nablus governor Mahmoud el Aloul told Reuters.
But Israeli officials said the raid was justified because the army had reserved the right to continue going after "ticking bombs" -- militants planning imminent attacks.
It was Israel's first killing of a militant in more than a month and followed Sharon's accusations that Abbas was not doing enough to rein in militants as he had promised.
Israel and the Palestinian Authority reached a ceasefire deal in early February and militants agreed with Abbas in March to extend their suspension of attacks on Israelis.


RENEWED VIOLENCE
But the truce has frayed recently. Israeli troops killed three Palestinian youths in disputed circumstances in Gaza on Saturday and militants retaliated by raining mortar fire on Jewish settlements in the coastal strip.
The last Palestinian attack inside Israel was a suicide bombing that killed five Israelis in Tel Aviv on Feb. 25.


Where to begin? According to the Israeli Defense Forces, there were ONLY 133 terrorist acts in the month of March, 2005 compared to January's 405. And yet, according to Reuters, Israel is "straining the truce". Truce? Is this a joke? Their intelligence services line up a known terrorist; they take him out and a major worldwide news wire breathlessly reports that Israel is straining a truce.

A Day of Rest at Vimy Ridge

April 13th, 1917 marked the fall of the last prominent German position at Vimy Ridge. On this day, 87 years ago, the Canadian army dug in and licked their wounds after completing perhaps the most astounding allied attack of the First World War.



The Battle



German soldiers surrender to advancing Canadian troops

It was at Vimy, in 1917, that all four Divisions of the Canadian Corps attacked simultaneously for the first (and last) time, about 100,000 men taking part in the battle. Vimy Ridge was an important part of the Germans' defences, barring the way to the mines and factories in the Douai plain which had been of great use to them in their continuation of the war. The very nature of the Ridge gave it strong, built-in defence, but these natural defences had been supplemented by strong-points, elaborate trench-systems and underground tunnels linking natural caves. All previous Allied attempts to capture the Ridge had failed, and there was a strong body of opinion among the Allied commanders that the Ridge was possibly impregnable and incapable of ever being taken by a direct attack.

Preparations for the battle were thorough and extremely detailed. Behind their lines, the Canadians built a full-scale replica of the ground over which their troops would have to attack, giving all units the chance to practice their attacking movements and so understand what they (and neighbouring units) were expected to do on the day. Regular reconnaissance patrols, assisted by information gathered from aerial photography, meant that records of changes to the German defences on the Ridge were always up-to-date. Tunnellers dug subterranean passages under the Ridge - a total of five kilometres in all on four levels - allowing the attacking troops to move close to their jumping-off positions in some safety. Once the battle had begun, these same tunnels allowed the wounded to be brought back under cover and also provided unseen and safe lines of communications.


The Infantry attack was preceded by a powerful artillery bombardment which lasted almost three weeks, involving about 1,000 guns, including huge, 15-inch howitzers. For the first two weeks, some guns were not fired at all, so that the Germans would not be able to locate their positions but eventually, these guns joined in the bombardment, too.

Although the shelling was aimed at the German trenches and defensive positions on the Ridge, the Canadians also shelled enemy batteries. They had become adept at locating German gun-positions and had identified the positions of 80 per cent of them.

April 9th., 1917 - Easter Monday - dawned cold, with freezing rain and sleet. The ground conditions were very bad, with slippery mud waiting for hamper the Canadians as they began their assault. Heavily laden, the men began to cross the shattered No-Man's Land, skirting as best they could the shell-holes and craters, until they came to the muddy, slippery slopes of the Ridge itself. They advanced behind a creeping barrage - a curtain of falling shells which crept forward just ahead of them. At key places in the advance, fresh troops took over the lead, until by the middle of the afternoon, three of the Canadian divisions had captured most of Vimy Ridge. By the next day, Hill 145 was also in Canadian hands, leaving just a few isolated outposts. By April 12th these, too had been taken and the Canadians' victory was complete.

After three years, the Germans were now driven from Vimy Ridge. There was to be no breakthrough, however, as the Canadians were unable to get their artillery out of their positions and across the muddy, shell-torn ground of the battlefield. However, they had captured more ground, more prisoners and more guns than any previous "British "offensive in the war thus far. It was the greatest Allied Victory yet.
Although the victory at Vimy came quickly, it did not come without cost. Of the 10,602 Canadian casualties, there were 3,598 dead. This is a high and tragic number, but it must be compared with the 200,000 Canadian, British, French and German dead who lie buried on the ridge from earlier, unsuccessful attacks. And the Canadians alone lost 24,000 killed or wounded on the Somme the previous year.
For Canada, the attack on Vimy Ridge marked a turning-point in the country's march towards distinct nationhood.
In the words of Brigadier-General Alexander Ross, DSO, who commanded the 28th (North West) Canadian Battalion at Vimy, "It was Canada from the Atlantic to the Pacific on parade. I thought then that in those few minutes I witnessed the birth of a nation."


The fighting over those 4 days had cost Canada 3,598 killed and 7,004 wounded. Of those wounded, my cousin's father lost a leg.

As a reminder to those who find the "quagmire" of Iraq an unbearable massacre, 1,549 American heroes have fallen over two years liberating a country of 25 million.

Ann Coulter, Marry Me!

What a breath of fresh air Ann Coulter's articles are - and to see them on Yahoo no less means that otherwise media-blind liberals are faced with her cogent arguments. As any conservative person knows, when you try to have a fact-driven discussion with a liberal you are met with a wall of denial. Its akin to the schoolyard "I know you are, but what am I?" level of debate. After a series of incidents involving people throwing food at conservative public speakers, Ms. Coulter adresses the subject today. Here is a sample, don't miss the whole thing [here].

IT'S ONLY FUNNY UNTIL SOMEONE LOSES A PIE
Wed Apr 13,10:01 PM ET


By Ann Coulter
Liberals enjoy claiming that they are intellectuals, thrilled to engage in a battle of wits. This, they believe, distinguishes them from conservatives, who are religious fanatics who react with impotent rage to opposing ideas. As one liberal, Jonathan Chait, put the cliche in The New Republic: Bush is an "instinctive anti-intellectual" and his administration hostile to "fact-driven debate." In a favorable contrast, Clinton is "the former Rhodes scholar who relished academic debates." Showing his usual reverence for fact-checking, The New York Times' Paul Krugman says the Republican Party is "dominated by people who believe truth should be determined by revelation, not research."

I'm not sure how these descriptions square with the fact that liberals keep responding to conservative ideas by throwing food. (Remember the good old days when liberals' "fact-driven" ideas only meant throwing money at their problems?)
Last October, two liberals responded to my speech at the University of Arizona -- during question and answer, no less -- by charging the stage and throwing two pies at me from a few yards away. Fortunately for me, liberals not only argue like liberals, they also throw like girls. (Apologies in advance to the Harvard biology professors who walked out on Larry Summers in a demonstration of their admiration of "research," not "revelation" -- but this may account for the dearth of female pitchers in Major League Baseball.)

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

More Gas from Ottawa

Government to buy greenhouse gas cuts
Climate-change plan relies more on incentives than industry reductions

ANDREW MILLS STAFF REPORTER
OTTAWA—The ads may feature Rick Mercer but the government wasn't kidding about the One-Tonne Challenge.
Canada's latest climate change plan is going to shift much of the load of reducing greenhouse gas emissions away from the 700 companies that produce half of those gases — and closer to you.
The federal government's updated climate change plan, due to be released today, is counting on groups like small businesses, farmers, municipalities and the provinces to pull more weight in the struggle to meet Canada's Kyoto targets, the Toronto Star has learned.
The old plan, presented in 2002, asked some heavy emitters, like oil and mining companies and steelmakers, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by unreasonable amounts that would have put them at a competitive disadvantage.
Not anymore, said Industry Minister David Emerson.
"I think you will find that, in fact, (the plan) is not a threat to competitiveness," he said in a committee meeting yesterday. "If anything it's an opportunity for industry to become more competitive." (ed)
The updated plan being called "Moving Forward on Climate Change," will outline how Canada plans to meet its Kyoto targets by 2012. The government has pledged to cut Canada's greenhouse gas emissions to be 6 per cent below emissions in 1990 by 2008-2012.
Today's plan, estimated to cost taxpayers about $10 billion, will rely heavily on groups like communities and farmers to take financial incentives in return for cutting their own greenhouse gas emissions.
Since late last year, comedian Mercer has been appearing on TV ads promoting the One-Tonne Challenge asking consumers to cut emissions by using less energy, conserving water and reducing waste.


My God, are they really going to try to roll this out? Kyoto is a mythical creature to the left but to the rest of us it is an unproven utopian goal based on increasingly shaky ground. It is also an invitation for the free west to commit mass economic suicide, desperately trying to meet goals that China and India will scoff at.

Further more, as the Liberal Party's goose continues to simmer, large business interests in Canada who did not approve but played ball to grease the wheels will be looking more and more to their own political brothers, the Conservative Party. Perhaps its time for them to come out of the wilderness

Monday, April 11, 2005

Vimy Ridge

Monday, April 11. 2005

Poll says only One in Four Young Canadians Know About Vimy Ridge


A new poll comissioned by the Dominion Institute and the Canadian Defence and Foreign Affairs Institute says Canadians overwhelmingly support increased public spending to commemorate the First World War and a greater emphasis on educating youth about veterans' contributions to the country.


Canadians were intensely appreciative of veterans and willing to support a variety of initiatives to honour Canada's First World War legacy.

Despite such goodwill, a significant proportion of the 1,000 randomly chosen Canadians who took part in the survey -- including the vast majority of young people -- knew few of the basic facts of Canada's experience in "The War to End All Wars."

Knowledge of pivotal events and facts is in steep decline, in fact, and there remains only a tenuous identification with our most significant single victory: the capture of Vimy Ridge, which took place 88 years ago today.

Just 33 per cent were familiar with the successful assault on dug-in German positions at Vimy on the morning of April 9, 1917. The battle was instrumental in confirming Canada's sense of nationhood, although the cost was steep -- 10,602 Canadians were killed or wounded, nearly one in three present.

Twenty-six per cent of those under the age of 35 knew about Vimy, and fewer than seven per cent of Quebecers, although the 22nd French-Canadian Battalion, the famous "Van Doos," was present.

Greg Lyle, managing director of Innovative Research Group, Inc., the Toronto firm that conducted this and two previous polls, in 2002 and 1998, said the results indicate the education system is instilling an inadequate appreciation of veterans' achievements and sacrifice.

Only Ontario, Quebec, Manitoba, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island require students to graduate with a course in contemporary Canadian history. Other provinces teach it as a unit of social science, emphasizing relevant themes rather than a detailed chronology of events.

"We know from other (studies) that knowledge drives interest, interest drives knowledge. They're a mutually reinforcing circle (and) the knowledge you leave school with remains relatively stable throughout life," Mr. Lyle said.

"We've stopped learning history the traditional way -- sequentially -- and it seems to be having an effect on Canadians' ability to recall key facts. People who know these facts are more likely to value these facts."

The poll, conducted between March 29 and April 3, is considered accurate within 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, and was released exclusively to CanWest-Global.

Liberals crashing and burning - about time

If you are unfamiliar with Canadian politics, Canada has been basically a one party state for the last thirty years and the Liberals have pandered to anyone with an open palm - especially in Quebec where they have bought one election after another. Finally, they have had their hands caught in the till, but good. Couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of people...

Conservatives surge ahead
Liberals in freefall after devastating Gomery testimony


SUSAN DELACOURT AND ROBERT BENZIE
OTTAWA AND TORONTO

OTTAWA - Conservative Leader Stephen Harper would become prime minister if an election were held today, according to a new Toronto Star poll.

The poll, conducted by EKOS Research Associates, shows the federal Liberals are in a dramatic freefall, even in their usual Ontario stronghold.

EKOS surveyed Canadians immediately following the release of devastating testimony last Thursday by former Montreal ad executive Jean Brault at the inquiry looking into the federal government's sponsorship scandal. Brault alleged gross misconduct in the Quebec wing of the federal Liberal party.

The pollster found that only 25 per cent of respondents nationwide would vote today for the Liberals, compared to 36.2 per cent for the Conservatives. The Liberals won a minority government with about 37 per cent of the vote in June 2004.

In Ontario, the Conservatives now lead with 40 per cent of the vote. The Liberals are at 33 per cent. Prime Minister Paul Martin escaped the indignity of losing the government last year when the party won 74 of the 106 seats in Ontario.

It's not just the sponsorship revelations dragging the federal Liberals down in Canada's biggest province, but also the so-called "fair-share" campaign that has pitted Premier Dalton McGuinty's provincial government against Martin's Liberals.

According to Frank Graves, president of EKOS, last week's scandal revelations only "lit the fuse, igniting resentment over fair-share treatment and ultimately producing a Liberal implosion in Ontario."

EKOS surveyed 1,125 Canadians, 18 years and older, between Thursday and Saturday.

Results from a survey of that size are considered accurate to within 2.9 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The national results gave the NDP 20.5 per cent of the vote; the Bloc Québécois, running in Quebec only, 12.6 per cent and the Green party 5 per cent.

Standings in the 308-seat House of Commons today are Liberals 133, Conservatives 99, Bloc 54 and NDP 19. There are two independents and one vacancy.

The results suggest the possibility of a spring election, although the opposition parties likely do not want to defeat the government until after the British Columbia election on May 17 and the visit by the Queen to Canada in late May.

And testimony at the sponsorship inquiry, headed by Justice John Gomery, also ends in late May.

For the Liberals, 25 per cent nationally represents a significant drop — 15 percentage points lower than they received in EKOS' last poll in February and 11 percentage points lower than the popular vote they gained in last June's federal election.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Gutless Liberal Government Dealings with Iran

Canada willing to help Iran, despite Kazemi row
Last Updated Fri, 01 Apr 2005 20:34:41 EST
CBC News

OTTAWA - While publicly denouncing the killing of Zahra Kazemi in July 2003, Canadian officials were also quietly allowing an Iranian government official to visit Canada, according to documents obtained by CBC Radio.

Iran had requested that one of its officials, Seyed Abu Talib Najafi, be briefed on the workings of Canada's new Advance Passenger Information database, designed to identify potential threats to civil aircraft before they board.

According to e-mails obtained under the Access to Information Act, Customs officials were concerned about the visit becoming public. One e-mail said: "We should keep this as low-key as possible."

Two e-mails within Canada Customs suggested there were concerns: "What's our position about the requesting country? ... in view of the current situation with Iran."

Just eight days previously, the Department of Foreign Affairs had recalled Canada's ambassador to Iran because it had refused Canadian inquiries about the Zahra Kazemi case. Kazemi, a Montreal-based photojournalist, was beaten to death after being arrested for photographing a Tehran prison riot. Iran maintains her death was accidental.

Foreign Affairs told Customs officials its only concern was "whether [Najafi] will be able to get his visa in time."

Full story [here].

Where to begin? Why the hell would we want to explain our air security measures to a terror sponsoring state? This is an outrage and yet people just shrug it off.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Kazemi Murder = Canadian Inaction

OTTAWA (CP) - A doctor’s “gruesome” account of injuries he found on Canadian journalist Zahra Kazemi only reinforces Canada’s belief that the woman was murdered in Iran, Foreign Affairs Minister Pierre Pettigrew said Thursday.

“We know that she was murdered and not the victim of an accident,” the minister said in Toronto. Canada has not given up on the case and will enlist international support against Iran, Pettigrew added. “We will be continuing to work with the international community, put the pressure on Iran so that they render justice,” he said.
Stockwell Day, the Tory foreign affairs critic, suggested the recall of Canada’s ambassador and the imposition of sanctions, but Pettigrew wasn’t enthusiastic. Canada needs an ambassador in Tehran to keep the pressure on, he said.

So basically Iran can do whatever it wants. This is further proof of Canada's diminished place in the world. Gone are our powerful allies and our increasingly squeeky voice is shrugged off because we won't carry our weight internationally.

Seals of Disapproval

Call for Canadian seafood boycott
March 31, 2005
THE Humane Society International (HSI) has called on Australians to boycott Canadian seafood in protest at its seal hunting season.Thousands of sealers armed with clubs, rifles and spears headed for the ice floes off eastern Canada this week for the world's largest seal hunt.
More than 300,000 baby harp seals are expected to be killed for their fur by May 15 when the season ends.
The hunt is expected to bring Canada's poor coastal communities about $US16 million ($20.86 million) but has been condemned by animal rights activists as barbaric.


Read the story [here]

Now, for those of you who find baby seals awful cute and cuddly, let me bring you up to speed. East coast seals abound in the millions. They are a virtual plague and need about 30 pounds of fish per day to live. For centuries the East Coast fisheries were amongst the most fertile fisheries in the world and an entire region's economy depended on them. Overfishing certainly didn't help any but the seals have had a major part in this. Why get bent out of shape over a species that is nowhere near the risk of extinction? How about the narwhales? Not cute enough?
If you follow the logic of many animal rights groups goal number one is to stop the "slaughter" of (insert cute animal's name here). If we all agreed they'd just move on to goal number two which is usually vegetarianism. Enough is enough. If you can eat veal or year old fish, you can kill seals.