Weekly Highlights from our Conservative Overlords

Weekly Highlights from our Conservative Overlords

Monday, May 26, 2014

Regicide - Week 160 - May 19-26

Huh.  Regicide obviously wasn't the term I was looking for...we'll leave it though.  Make you think it's some sort of cryptic commentary on something.  I was certain Regicide was correct...

It seems like the Conservatives can't even play by the rules with their own elections.  The Eve Adams nomination battle gets nastier, and the nomination election is called off.  It's okay though.  Demetri Soudas did it all for love, so it's fine.

We often play second fiddle to the US military, but we've now proven we can be contenders with the best of them...Sexual assault within the Canadian military is out of control, just like in the US.

Some current Conservative MP's have been busy developing an app for the next election.  To help the Conservatives get re-elected.  Not helping society or anything.

With world leaders like this, I think everything is going to turn out great...The US House Science Committee has banned the US Military from studying climate change.

The Harper Government has definitively proven through a self funded study that the Canada/Columbia free trade deal has had no negative impacts on human rights abuses.

The Straight explains why the Conservatives new citizenship rules might not be all that great.  Beware dual citizens who commit crimes.  Or are accused of committing crimes by shady people.

Lots of Canadians have just given up on looking for work.  Which is odd as the number of Temporary Foreign Workers has tripled in certain areas.  These people need to run as Conservative candidates or something...This former (failed) candidate received several government contracts, both before and after she ran.

I feel like I'm missing something here.  The wife of the soldier that Omar Khadr killed is suing him for $50 Million.  I mean...say what you will about the craziness of soldiers families suing people over deaths and what that might mean for society.  But do Guantanamo inmates make a lot more money than I think they do?

To expand on last weeks link about oil spill clean-up costs...A 1 Billion limit to liability...an expected 10 Billion cost for clean-up.  Insane.  Also sited in this story, recent trade deals promised the EU and India that they could import as many temporary foreign workers as they wanted if they establish business in Canada.  This is a problem.  With that, we have an interesting behind-the-scenes on a farce of an Oil Sands Spill clean-up project.

Garth shows a diagram from the Georgia Straight that shows non-resident ownership in Vancouver is quite low.  But doesn't link to the article.  Which is pretty lame.

Interesting research on global morality...things such as drinking, premarital sex, contraceptive use and abortion.  Diving in to abortion...only 26% of Canadians think abortion is immoral (and is roughly the same amount of people that think gambling is immoral).  And I'm betting the Venn diagram of Conservative Voters/Immoral Abortion Judgers is two nearly concentric circles.  So maybe Trudeau will be alright?  Because the Catholics hate him.

This is a bit rich.  Maxime Bernier speculates that the Liberals coming to power could cause Quebec to separate.  Because the Conservatives have done so much to make Quebec feel welcome.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Up to here - Week 159 - May 12-19

Well.  It doesn't really matter now, does it?  After all, the Antarctic ice collapse has started and probably can't be stopped.  Think of the business opportunities!  Glad I don't own Real Estate in Richmond.

Hooray!  The next election is going to be so fair!

Canada broke ranks with the US and refused to sanction a couple of Russian bigwigs.  Of course it has nothing to do with their significant investments in Canada.  Wouldn't those actually be two of the best guys to sanction if you were actually trying to prove a point?

This guy figures Trudeau has lost the Catholic vote with his abortion proclamation.  Probably had already lost them on gay marriage, anyhow.

The new pipeline rules and regulations are far from "world class".  And why a 1 billion cap on liability?  1,000 people out to an anti Enbridge rally is nothing to sneeze at.

Canada may be subsidizing energy companies to the tune of $34 Billion.  Per year.

This is pretty much straight from the Stephen Harper playbook.  Find a crime that happened once or twice.  Ensure that it is something nobody can argue on behalf of.  And put resources into creating a law against it.  Voila.  Tough on crime.  Who doesn't love police dogs?

There's something kind of funny about an old dude like Julian Fantino defending spending $100,000 to promote a twitter account.  I wonder if he knows what it is?

Garth lays out the sad state of employment affairs in Canada.  Yikes.

Rafe Mair raises a good (and familiar) point.  How is it a "jobs plan" to just dig shit out of the ground and put it on a boat?

Dean Del Mastro doesn't give up.  Wants the RCMP to investigate Elections Canada.  Charles Manson makes similar demands of the people that investigated him as well.

The NDP sent out lots of mailings using government resources.  The Conservatives do this all the time as well...but Elections Canada is investigating.  As well, the Thomas Mulcair grilling over NDP satellite offices has devolved into a bit of a sideshow.

A full swat team came to arrest the engineer on the train that exploded in Lac Megantic.  I mean, when your crime is perhaps being negligent in operating a train, of course you should be considered armed and dangerous and have your entire family hauled out onto the front lawn at gunpoint after you offered to just come in on your own volition.  Meanwhile, the owner declares bankruptcy and walks away.

This story reveals how silly government secrecy rules are.  David Cameron's name has been redacted from documents about his official visit to Canada.  The photo is pretty great.

Jason Kenney to the rescue!  Somehow, we're going to tie the number of temporary foreign workers to the unemployment rate.  Even though our ability to collect stats is bad.  Another company swindled temporary foreign workers out of money.

Hold on a second.  We have a "Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime"?

A nice long read on the history of the Experimental Lakes Area and the impact of bad government management.

This article lays out the case for a London housing bubble...and sounds oddly familiar.

This story highlights all the changes to other countries laws the USA wants.  Canada and Japan need to get rid of privacy laws.  Mexico can't put taxes on junk food.  Canada needs longer pharmaceutical patents.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Almost there - Week 158 - May 5-12

I don't get this.  The Conservatives look poised to use the Ukraine crisis as an excuse to hike military spending.  I'm sorry, but if we are to look at this situation and think "Huh.  If only we had the firepower we really could have showed those Russians who is boss", we're crazy.  I don't think our military is within an order of magnitude of challenging Russia for anything.  So what are they talking about?  Even if we doubled military spending we'd still have nothing.

A website has started mapping locations of temporary foreign workers in Canada.  The largest chunk are working in food service in large urban areas.  Another company has been sanctioned over Temporary Foreign Workers.  Temporary Foreign pilots now?  With the full knowledge of Jason Kenney.  And, lastly (I think), a Temporary Foreign Worker in Nanaimo was threatened with death if he reported his unfair working conditions.  Oh.  Wait.  One more link...what this looks like from the workers side.  Jeez...okay.  This is it.  Apparently telling temporary foreign workers that if they don't do exactly what you say, you'll send them home...isn't a threat.

Kinder Morgan thought it would be a good idea to talk about how an oil spill could potentially provide a kickstart to the economy.

The CBC summarizes all the things Stephen Harper has done with respect to the Supreme Court.  Mostly temper tantrums and embarrassments  .It now looks like the Conservatives knew the Nadon appointment was going to be a problem, and they attempted to skirt the issue with some (should we say...some more?) legal shenanigans, but Nadon wouldn't go along with it.  And a bunch of legal experts are telling Steve that he's wrong with his comments about the Chief Justice.

A lawyer involved with the Robocalls investigation calls it "fatally flawed".  Basically, they only considered people who made formal complaints, and not the 1000+ other calls that were made.

The opposition is proposing 145 ammendments to the "Fair Elections" act.

The Tyee dives into Piketty.  I like this graph that they came up with...inflation adjusted incomes in BC, the top 1% vs. the bottom 90%.  Not sure what year they adjust to.

The head of the Canadian Border Services Agency thinks it's a bad idea to continue with the tv show "Border Security".  But the Conservative government disagrees, and is going to move forward with it anyway.  Because what does the head of an agency know about anything?

Garth breaks down the Real Estate stats.  Not all is as the Real Estate boards tell us.  They very consistently overstate the number of sales, then adjust downwards, then overstate again the next year, comparing to the downward adjusted number.

Government employees that need to use data to make decisions are not very happy about the mandatory long form census going away.  On a similar note, the Auditor General points out that Stats Can cannot provide accurate job data in certain areas of the country.

Steady hand on the tiller!  Canada loses 29,000 jobs in April.

Is the government snooping on Facebook against the law?  Maybe.

A study is showing that methane leakage from fracked areas is far higher than expected.

A Conservative Senator has degrees from imaginary Universities.

Only an idiot would look at SNC Lavalin and think "You know...I really want the guy running the board of directors of that company for the last few years to come and run things for me."  Christy Clark, everybody!

The Conservative ad campaign about wireless fees has made people a bit angry.  Because exactly the opposite of what was promised has happened.  Competition down.  Prices up.

A Canadian mining company supposedly used slave labour to construct a mine in Africa.  The government responded with non answers and cliches.

First of all, let me say that as an Apple shareholder (I know...I held on for too long)...this outrages me.  $68 Million in stock for a senior level manager?  What the hell?  This is just...shit...the 1% issue in a nutshell.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Supremely Odd - Week 157 - April 28-May 5

My favourite headline of the week: Arrested woman throws poop at officers

Steve-O is starting to play dirty with the Supreme Court.  Out of nowhere, he brings up an "inappropriate phone call" from the Chief Justice.  Never mind that a distinguished law professor has pointed out that there wouldn't be a problem with this callNever mind that the Chief Justice denies that this ever happened.  The base is happy that they have an explanation now.

The RCMP is indicated that there may be as many as 1,000 murdered aboriginal women across the country?  The Conservatives refuse a public inquiry.  Not only that, they scrubbed the recommendations for a public inquiry from a Parliament report.

Government consultation has suggested that Canadians want the Economic Action Plan Ads to stop.

Stephen Harper blames those rascally voters.  Some of them have no intention of producing ID at the polls.  I guess if you're an untrustworthy bastard, you assume everybody else is too.

Data leaks by telcos to government agencies reach insane levelsMillions of (mostly warrantless) requests for data each year.  Take note...government spying in the US just resulted in Brazil taking their fighter plane money elsewhere.

 The RCMP didn't even bother to consult with a public prosecutor over the Nigel Wright case.  They did talk to provincial prosecutors.

The Conservatives have set it up so that corporate sponsors are paying for part of the upcoming "Day of Honour" for soldiers?

A nice rundown of bureaucrats that have spoken out against the Harper Government.  Summary: It seldom ends well for their life as a government employee.

It's a story that Elections Canada had to pay a former judge to review their investigation into the robocalls scandal?  Somebody should have done it for free?

What the fuck?  The feds announce that job ready immigrants will be given preference.  Now BC is re-tooling it's school system to create worker drones for the upcoming job shortage revolution?  On the surface, yes, it makes sense to prepare kids for the future, and the future usually requires working for the man in some way, shape or form.  But this borders on insane.  This borders on the government being nothing more than the enabler for companies to make huge amounts of money.  But we have to have workers to execute the fracking plan that Environment Canada warns is moving way, way too fast, right?

The CBC lays out the history and issues of the Temporary Foreign Worker program.  And Jason Kenney explodes on twitter after Bob Rae insults him.  He also thinks that the Liberals or NDP can't criticize the program because they've helped some of their constituents use the program (we've heard this before).  All of a sudden, Stephen Harper is a champion for the Canadian worker, warning employers abusing the Temporary Foreign Worker program that he won't stand for the abuse that he allowed any longer.

There's a really weird story here:  A Polish newspaper donated a free ad to Eve Adams and suggested she is already the MP for the riding she is contesting.  Of course, it's not her fault.

Shawn Atleo resigns.  I have not idea what this means.

50 troops off to fight the Russians.  6 airplanes (that may not be armed).  1 boat.  50 troops.

Embarrass the RCMP, face charges for assaulting an RCMP officer.

A Canadian aid group has been branded a terrorist organization and had it's offices raided over support for Hamas.  Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Hamas now a part of the legitimate government in Palestine?  So couldn't any organization working in Palestine be levelled with similar charges?  Regardless, the group denies any support of Hamas.

The government doesn't seem to be taking the job of filling vacant scientists positions seriously.  Why bother hiring good scientists if you're only going to muzzle them, I guess.

The NHL has a noticeable impact on the overall Canadian economy.

This is beyond awesome.  A group of Satanists have commissioned a statue for the front of the Oklahoma Statehouse.  Their response to threats against the monument?  Their insurance may allow them to build two if this one is damaged.  It's like a video game villain or something.  Kill one, two come back in its place.

Let's end on a depressing note.  The Cons seemed to be bouncing back in the polls.