April 05, 2005

Gomery Inquiry & A Trip down Memory Lane & Liberal "Victims" -- Kazemi, SCOC-Language, Lou Dobbs-Border Woes, Health Care

Update #3: Plug this into your media player and listen.

CFRA Ottawa

Note: new posts added below the updates.

Update #2: a link that was missing on Apr. 4, 05 in Gomery: We could be looking at a quick election? -- Buzz, Links, Publication Ban -- Speculation, Civil Disobedience, PM & Global Governance - & More -- The link should have been The language police strike again -- The View From Montreal -- taverne? taverne? -- Does it matter?

Update #1: on the same post but a different section.

This correction has to do with significance and terminology within this post, Gomery: We could be looking at a quick election? -- Buzz, Links, Publication Ban -- Speculation, Civil Disobedience, PM & Global Governance - & More (see menu at left)

Update and correction in terminology, April 5, 05:

In this post:

Gomery Inquiry:

It was the hearings before the Public Accounts Committee which led, eventually, to the Gomery Inquiry.

The paragraph beginning "Official accounts" should have been "Official accounts" of the

Standing Committee on Public Accounts


Wednesday, March 24, 2004

The paragraph now:

Official accounts of some of last year's Public Accounts committee's hearings are on the government of Canada website, as "evidence" presented before the "Standing Committee on Public Accounts", a committee of the Canadian Parliament.

(Error: I had written "Hansard" which is properly the term for the record of debates in the House of Commons; the term does not cover records of the Commons committees, I don't think. However, I am still unsure whether this was an error, so check. This is all I could find quickly. NJC )

A trip down memory lane -- Was all this only one year ago? How time flies when . . .

One year ago, apparently, those in government / public service didn't believe they could survive an election after what was, at that time, being revealed in evidence given to the Public Accounts Committee. Actually, the colluding mainstream media (MSM) used fear tactics about a change of government. (They could lose their own perqs if the government fell -- the end of status quo and a new scramble for positioning would ensue.) Hence, they played up any negatives they could find, for example, fear of the right wing religious, sneeringly mentioned, who would do who-knew-what. MSM spewed fear -- hammering at stories designed to scare Canadians over what would happen under a Conservative government, so the great unwashed--too busy to read but listening occasionally to the venom spouted by MSM--voted Liberal.

Another example, I had two highly educated friends who listened to and at least half-believed the fear mongering. They contacted me, voices quavering about what would happen under that Albertan Conservative, Stephen Harper, as though being an Albertan were to be a breed apart, instead of a Canadian like the rest of us. They believed the hogwash about Conservatives -- so why call me, one who is obviously conservative leaning, with or without a membership card? One actually asked me to find out something to allay fears about the economy. Apparently, they thought I would be one conservative they actually knew who would not mislead them on the information, at least.

That is what MSM have done to Canadians -- a terrible disservice.

Well, the Liberals and their propaganda wing(s) succeeded; Canadians had to wait another year for the information to come out in the Gomery Inquiry. Even what is banned from publication now has them salivating. Banning is like telling a gossip not to tell. It simply causes the stories to fly through the back corridors -- or via US writers who have better sources of information on our government than we have.

If you want proof of the Liberals' righteous fear from a year ago and how the powerful protect themselves, check what happened preparatory to PM Paul Martin's calling an election.

Political aides land plum jobs -- Public service hirings: Criticized policy parachutes Cabinet ministers' staff into senior positions Monday, April 12, 2004, Bill Curry, CanWest News Service
Note the date, 2004.

OTTAWA - Ninety political aides bypassed the burdensome application process for public service jobs to seek senior postings in 2003-04, using a controversial policy that was condemned two years ago.

Ottawa's top public servants were advised that the policy allowing political staff to parachute into senior positions in the public service should be scrapped, new documents show.

Yet the program has just recorded its busiest year . . . .

The 90 applications are more than double. . . .

[. . . . ] Successful applicants are placed on a waiting list for one year to be hired "in priority to all other persons" for jobs that meet their described areas of interest.

[. . . . ] One of the most high-profile examples of political aides crossing over into the public service is Pierre Tremblay, who in 1999 left his job as chief of staff to then-public works minister Alfonso Gagliano to take over from Chuck Guite as executive director of the federal sponsorship program.

[. . . . ] The program continues to attract negative attention and was linked to the sponsorship scandal in a recent report by Professor Denis Saint-Martin of the Universite de Montreal called The Groupaction Affair: a case of the politicization of the federal public service? In the report, Prof. Saint-Martin called for the priority-consideration program to be "abolished."

Last year, then-PSC president Scott Serson urged MPs studying the Public Service Modernization Act to give the PSC the power to reject placements that were deemed too political, such as a staff person who moves directly from a minister's office into the same government department.

"In some cases, such an appointment could be perceived as impairing the political impartiality of the public service," Mr. Serson told MPs. However, his recommendation was ignored by the committee studying the bill.

Conservative MP Paul Forseth said Canadians applying for government jobs will be upset to see how often this avenue is used to bypass the normal hiring process.
[. . . . ]

Search: "Alex Himelfarb, the Clerk of the Privy Council", "federal government's Canadian Centre for Management Development," to get rid of the dozens of political staff members who were loyal to Jean Chretien

Irony: Mr. Martin's claims about curing Canada's "democratic deficit." -- Apr. 12, 2004

Liberals silence the Adscam committee April 12, 2004, National Post

Paul Martin recently claimed the Adscam investigation being conducted by the House of Commons Public Accounts committee had become a "farce." [. . . . ]

Liberal efforts to trip up the parliamentary investigation began last month, after former public works minister Alfonso Gagliano denied he knew anything about how Liberal-friendly ad agencies in Quebec made $100-million in questionable commissions for handing out sponsorship grants. Suspecting that Mr. Gagliano may have been less than forthright when he testified that he "didn't see, didn't ask" about the scheme while he was the minister in charge of the department administering sponsorships, Conservative committee members sought his briefing books, notes, memos and agenda items from the meetings he attended on Adscam-related subjects. To a person, the Liberal members voted it down. They would permit no comparison of Mr. Gagliano's records with his sworn testimony.

Then, the committee heard from Jean Pelletier, Jean Chretien's former chief of staff and the man who was dismissed from his patronage post as VIA Rail chairman in March following disparaging remarks he made about Myriam Bedard. The Liberals used their majority on the committee to veto any tough questions: Every time a Conservative began to scrutinize Mr. Pelletier too closely, Quebec Liberal MP Marlene Jennings would raise a point of order. She even raised points of order on her own points of order to ensnare members in endless procedural debates and run out the clock on Mr. Pelletier's appearance. When needed, the rest of the committee's Grits voted en masse to support Ms. Jennings' objections. Some Liberals even hooted and snickered their contempt each time a Conservative began to speak. The Liberals were clearly more interested in running interference for Mr. Pelletier than in digging up sponsorship bones.

The recent Liberal performance reminded us of Mr. Gagliano's testimony before the Commons' Foreign Affairs committee in 2002. On that occasion, the committee's chairwoman, Jean Augustine, who [was, one year ago] Mr. Martin's Multiculturalism Minister, used her prerogative to disallow any and all questions about Adscam. Very little has changed in the interim, despite Mr. Martin's claims about curing Canada's "democratic deficit." [. . . . ]

Do you suppose Marlene Jennings and Jean Augustine wish all this were not online somewhere -- that they hadn't been watched by people who remember?

Are all those mentioned the good Liberals in the Liberal Party who have been "victimized"? The best defense is . . . and so there will be another court case to . . . . . do what?

I see where the Liberal Party of Alberta(?) is considering a name change. Check whether it is Alberta and whether the provincial or federal party. I just caught it in passing.

Other Matters -- some related to the above

Question Period -- hardly Churchillian

I ran into this delightful Churchill ancedote. Addressing the House of Commons, Churchill stated,

"When I was a child I was taken to see the PT Barnum Circus. The thing I most wanted to see was The Boneless Wonder. However my parents thought it would be too revolting and might blight my days. And I have waited 50 years to see The Boneless Wonder sitting on the treasury Bench."

We just don't get that witty repartee in politics today. Watching Question Period in the Canadian Parliament is disheartening. Most--or is it only the ones the media and sound system pick up?--are like a bunch of braying donkeys. To broadcast the period, they had to set up filters, so Canadians could even hear the questions and answers. Even with this technology the speakers get drowned out and have to sit down. The Liberals have taken to not even pretending to answer questions logically. [As MP Don Boudria once said, "It's called Question Period; not Answer Period." How cynical is that? . . . added by NJC]

Francophones in PQ are not to be allowed to send their kids to English schools and the rights of English speakers have been advanced only in miniscule ways. So much for the Charter rights on language freedom. Typical politicized judgement by the Supremes. The Liberals appoint them and they hew the Liberal line. Charest is on the ropes in Quebec so nothing must ruffle the francophones' feathers.

Thanks, A.

Now, Bud has something to say -- in his own inimitable fashion.

When the language police drove the anglophones out of Quebec, did anything flicker? Is anything flickering yet in the rest of Canada? Read on; then you'll understand from whence the idea comes. NJC

Bud Talkinghorn: It used to be that PT Barnum had the only Boneless Wonder

Now we can claim nine Boneless Wonders on the bench of The Supreme Court (SCOC). They had a chance to finally rectify the injustices done to anglophones and francophones. Quebec's Bill 101 is the most draconian language law in the world. Is Quebec so fragile that it has to resort to sign laws forcing immigrants to educate in French, or mandating other prohibitions that have driven 400,000 anglo/allophones out of the province?

Maybe the Quebecois should remember the saying:

"When the Spanish Inquisition drove the Jews out of Spain, the lights of progress began to immediately flicker."

Does Quebec think it can live in some cultural/linguistic bubble? Well, obviously The Supreme Court thinks so. No francophone parent may enrol his child in the English system -- unless he/she can afford private school. And while the chap who had taken French immersion--who was then and is now classified as a francophone--won his case, the Supremes' judgement was so vaguely worded that others will have to take their cases to court. The gist of their ruling on English rights was so mush-mouthed as to mean nothing. They asked the Quebec government to 'weigh' the merits of a anglophone/allophone wishes.

Again, the Court has ruled that there are equalities for some, but not for all. Every ruling they make like this is another blow to their already tarnished reputations. It is a sad day when a provincial ministry can behave as though this were Zimbabwe and you have the Boneless Wonders rubber-stamping their decisions.

© Bud Talkinghorn

Another story of one person dealing with the Quebec bureaucracy ended with this. NJC

"If I were a francophone Quebecois, then there would be no nonsense about out of the province qualifications and disqualifications. Right?" I was shocked that he readily agreed that was the case. He asked that I not reveal his name. He was an honest francophone cog in this dirty wheel, so I agreed. That is an example of how it goes down, all over the system.

Bud Talkinghorn: Kazemi murder

As we all suspected, she was tortured and beaten. The addition of rape is monstrous. This is how the Mullahs run Iran. It has been an unbroken record of savagery since Khomeini took power. Thousands were summarily executed, the Ba'hai faith was persecuted, and women's rights were quashed. The regime have tried to put a human face on their rule, but the reality always gets in the way. The Iranian doctor, who gave evidence of his personal observations is fully deserving of his refugee status here. Kasemi whipped, hit repeatedly, and then brutally raped -- and the Iranian government claims she fell down and suffered a stroke. Now, will we have the mainstream media allowing these liars to refute the truth, since it seems our government will do nothing substantive? Eventually, Iran's government will fall through its own weight of moral corruption, much as the Shah's regime did. The only problem is that most of the educated Iranian middle-class, who would lead the revolt, are trying to leave. It is only when the peasant class rises up that this revolution will happen. However, even they might finally open their eyes.

© Bud Talkinghorn

Lou Dobbs -- Border Woes -- related to Canada's

Lou Dobbs exposes that scandalous loss of U.S. sovereignty, as tens of thousands swarm nightly across the Mexican border. How many of them are al-Queda, who have sleeper cell help, once in the States? Or Mara Salvatrucha? Of course, in Canada we allow undocumented Arabs to claim refugee status and start collecting welfare the same day. Over 3,000 Muslim "refugees" have been admitted since 9/11. Most were undocumented, or were thought to be holding fraudulent passports and visas, security experts claim. Madness!

Health Care: While the going was good . . . now over.

Someone I know phoned a hospital to see if they had living wills. They didn't, but an interesting conversation ensued. Apparently, 80% of the hospital's contributions come from seniors. Also, the young and middle-aged don't care about the system. Those under 21 are totally self-absorbed and spoiled, my source learned. When the huge demographic of the Baby Boomers hits the walker stage, those underneath them will let them suffer. Perhaps we are catching the last wave on semi-decent health care.

A good death

This comes from someone who has been at the bedside of a dying family member. Thanks.

Teri Schivo has died. If she really wanted not to be revived, then she is finally at peace. We will never know what she wished, really. I am happy for her and those her living corpse ruled. I, along with other family members, had to make that decision for my father. He was old and suffering from viral pneumonia. He survived through the use of a ventilator and heavy drugs. When, against all odds (only 1 to 9 chance), he lived and came off the ventilator, his first commandment was "never again" was he to be placed on a ventilator. Even though we had been at his bedside in shifts for 24 hours, he never knew we were there. He related after he came off the ventilator that all he could remember were horrifying nightmares -- or nothingness. After the ventilator period, we asked him for his wishes. "Let me die with dignity. No more machines or tubes," he demanded. After a quick family consultation we concurred with his desire. Dad signed his living will, with wife and eldest child as witnesses. Every single one of us knew, instinctively, that that was the right thing to do. At one point the hospital was going to hook him up to the ventilator again but that was stopped by a family member. So be vigilant about what they are doing, despite your wishes. After this one revival using the ventilator, Dad lived for another three months at home, enjoying life. Then he worsened and died--without machines. A good death.

My Comment:

All I ever ask for myself is that:

* once my mind does not work, in that I cannot enjoy an intellectual life
* once I can no longer see to read and enjoy nature--finches, orioles, hummingbirds, squirrels, raccoons, tomatoes on the vine, grape vines, all of it
* once the pleasures of good food, passable plonk and conversation at the dining table are gone
* once I no longer care about my relatives enough to talk with them about what is happening in their lives
* once all that is gone, pull my plug.

By that, I mean, don't even attempt to keep me alive with anything but food and water -- maybe a pill if I am in pain. Kill the pain but don't keep prolonging it, nor me.

My bottom line: I refuse to have anyone changing my diaper. At that, I balk. Have some mercy on me and let me go. NJC


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