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An affiliate blogger of ours can use our (and your) help.

I wanted to post this to our frontpage. Alheli Picazo has been a blogging affiliate of ours for a fair # of years, though she has gone in fits and spurts.. and this is partially due to her health issues she has suffered. Those have come to a head, as you’ll see here in her own words, explaining what is going on with her health.

To be brief, she needs help financially to help pay for the operation to fix the issues she has faced, so if you can spare even a few dollars, it will go a long way. Please consider donating to help her.


Montreal Simon: Why Jason Kenney Must Resign Immediately

The other day I wrote a post accusing Jason Kenney of lying. Again. Claiming that the reason we are going to bomb Syria is because the Americans need us and our so-called smart-bombs.And of getting the country's top general Tom Lawson to cover for him. Well today Lawson ate his words and make Kenney look like an idiot. Read more »

Morton's Musings: Relief from forfeiture

Varajao v. Azish, 2015 ONCA 218:

[11]       The trial judge correctly noted that in order to obtain relief from forfeiture the appellants were required to establish that i) the forfeited sum was out of proportion to the damages suffered; and ii) it would be unconscionable for the vendor to retain the money.  Although the respondent did not suffer damages, the trial judge determined that it was not unconscionable for him to retain the deposit.  She considered and rejected the submission that the respondent’s counsel used sharp practice.  We would not interfere with this exercise of discretion on the (Read more…)

The Moncton Times@Transcript - Good and Bad: April 1: Justin Trudeau is Harper’s secret love-child!

Well, it IS April Fools’ Day.

Actually, Justin is pretty drab compared to either Stephen or Pierre. Unlike Pierre, he has no intellect to speak of. Unlike Stephen, he’s not crazed with a desire for personal power.________________________________________________________________

On page 1, the Gallant government brings down its budget for 2015. It is exactly what we could have expected – no sense of priorities, no sense of a fundamental purpose for government, destructive of the education system, kind to the very rich, very tough on those seniors who are living too long anyway, and easy on the very rich…  Yes, I (Read more…)

Morton's Musings: Threats that can amount to extortion

R. v. Alexander (2005), 206 C.C.C. (3d) 233 (Ont. C.A.) the accused was convicted of extortion for a threat that was not otherwise criminal. In that case the accused’s wife was owed $7,000 by another women, M.M. The accused sent M.M. a draft of a letter explaining that M.M. was involved in “highly questionable ethical and moral conduct”. The accused explained to M.M. that if she did not pay the debt, the accused would send the letter to M.M.’s employer and M.M. would likely be fired. Sending such a (Read more…) EFF: This secretive agreement could undermine user safeguards

More bad news about the TPP.

Article by Maira Sutton for the EFF

A newly leaked chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement from Wikileaks has confirmed some of our worst fears about the agreement. The latest provisions would enable multinational corporations to undermine public interest rules through an international tribunal process called investor state dispute settlement (ISDS). Under this process, foreign companies can challenge any new law or government action at the federal, state, or local level, in a country that is a signatory to the agreement. Companies can file such lawsuits based upon their claim that the law (Read more…)

The Progressive Economics Forum: Transforming Precarious Work

The Ontario government has launched a review of their Labour Relations Act and Employment Standards Act. The premise is that the workplace has changed, and Ontario labour law no longer does as much as it should to protect vulnerable workers.

The Workers’ Action Centre in Toronto took this opportunity to document the myriad ways that workers are left behind, and make 47 concrete recommendations to improve legislative protections.

What’s unique about this report is that worker’s voices are central. Throughout the report links are made between the lived experiences of workers, current labour market statistics, and thoughtful recommendations to make (Read more…)

DeSmogBlog: Oilsands Companies Scramble to Reclaim Seismic Lines in Endangered Caribou Habitat

Companies in Alberta’s oilsands are scrambling to find a way to reclaim tens of thousands of kilometres of seismic lines cut into the boreal forest before regulations that mandate the recovery of endangered caribou habitat are implemented in late 2017.

But while crews experiment with planting black spruce in piles of dirt during minus-25 degree weather in a bid to repair the forest, the Alberta government continues to lease massive segments of the region for further exploration and still hasn’t mandated reclamation of seismic lines.

The controversy over caribou habitat and wolf culls in Alberta has stewed for years, (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: DeSmogBlog: Oilsands Companies Scramble to Reclaim Seismic Lines in Endangered Caribou Habitat

DeSmogBlog: Water Is Life; We Can’t Afford To Waste It

This is a guest post by David Suzuki.

How long can you go without water? You could probably survive a few weeks without water for cooking. If you stopped washing, the threat to your life might only come from people who can’t stand the smell. But most people won’t live for more than three days without water to drink. It makes sense: our bodies are about 65 per cent water.

Tags:  water drought climate change global warming drinking water advisories first nations conservation

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Closed for Business, Hostile to Seniors

Closed: that’s the message Collingwood Council sent to business during its recent budget discussions. We’re making it more expensive to run a business here, and by the way, we’re hostile to seniors and low-wage earners, too. Under the tissue-thin pretense of keeping taxes low (which they aren’t, really), council approved a staff initiative to remove the costs […]

The Disaffected Lib: Better Off Without Him

There probably aren’t many in Parliament with a less distinguished career that Conservative MP James Lunney.

His pension now safely in the bag, Lunney has decided to formalize his legislative contribution by now running in the upcoming federal election.  He’ll go down undefeated and very quickly forgotten.

Lunney gives “bible thumpers” a bad name.  A chiropractor in a previous life, Lunney has used his office primarily to promote his evangelical pursuits.  Even with Harper’s astonishingly shallow caucus talent pool, Lunney remained in the deepest recesses of the back bench.

So, with nothing at all to lose, Dr. Lumpy has resigned (Read more…) Meet the man who can stop the TPP’s Internet censorship plan

A huge leak just revealed that the TPP would establish a secretive, shadowy international court that could be used by Big Media giants to kick Internet users around the world offline.

To make this nightmare a reality, anti-Internet lobbyists are pushing harder than ever to “fast track” the TPP. If they succeed, the Internet you love will be policed and censored for generations.

But there’s hope. Groups fighting this plan have found the one person who can stop it. Meet U.S. Senator Ron Wyden and tell him right now: Do not Fast Track Internet censorship.

read more

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Arthur Neslen reports on the Health and Environmental Alliance’s study of greenhouse gas emission reductions showing that we’d enjoy both improved health and economic benefits by pursuing ambitious targets to fight climate change. And David Roberts examines the massive cost and minimal benefit of carbon capture and storage schemes which serve mostly to increase how much oil we burn at public expense.

- Chris Simpson writes about the need for physicians to consider social determinants of health as part of patient care. And Carolyn Shimmin offers a primer for journalists (and others) to (Read more…)

DeSmogBlog: B.C. Mine Approvals ‘Too Much, Too Fast’ According to Alaskans Downstream

B.C.’s approval of a new mine in a transboundary watershed has added fuel to simmering Alaskan anger about the province’s surge of mine development adjacent to the southeast Alaska border.

The province has granted an environmental assessment certificate to Pretivm Resources Inc. for the Brucejack gold and silver mine, about 65 kilometres northwest of Stewart and 40 kilometres upstream from the Alaskan border.

The underground mine, which has not yet received federal approval, will be close to the headwaters of the Unuk River, which flows from B.C. into Alaska. The Unuk is one of Southeast Alaska’s largest king (chinook) (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Celebrate Holy Week By Flogging A Banker Your Daily Digital Digest for Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Your news links for today:

From Obama Birthers to Anti-Immigration Activists: Who the Government Turned to for Bill C-51 Support During Committee Hearings – Michael Geist Canadian spy agency’s overseer can’t really oversee: documents – Toronto Star Stephen Harper’s personal info reportedly revealed in G20 privacy breach – Toronto Star After Snowden, The NSA Faces Recruitment Challenge – NPR Canadian wireless carriers brace for surge of expired contracts – Globe and Mail Canada’s GSM blacklist may not be working as intended – iPhone in Canada Wall Street’s Still Downplaying TV Cord Cutting As Irrelevant – DSL Reports Chairman Wheeler Predicts (Read more…) . . . → Read More: Your Daily Digital Digest for Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Saskboy's Abandoned Stuff: Haters Gonna Hate

And Liars Gonna Lie.

So, one might expect @jkenney to retract that statement today but, I'm guessing, blame the mistake on bad information from DND and/or CDS.

— Glen McGregor (@glen_mcgregor) April 1, 2015

Here's @jkenney's statement in #HOC about precision-guided munitions, that has since be contradicted by the CDS.

— Glen McGregor (@glen_mcgregor) April 1, 2015

The Disaffected Lib: Your Morning Laugh

From Team Coco:

Accidental Deliberations: On exclusivity

Shorter Harper Cons: We’ll consider allowing democratic oversight of CSIS just as soon as that know-nothing public stops electing MPs who aren’t us.

Things Are Good: Travel For a Better Brain

I just booked a flight to London and coincidentally came across an article that says that our brains can benefit greatly from exploring the world. A good way to start the day!

It turns out that the ability of the brain to handle new information is connected to well-being and that travel can get your bring working in new ways. It is also beneficial to step out of your comfort zone, which travelling general encourages. So you should book that trip you’ve been thinking about!

In recent years, psychologists and neuroscientists have begun examining more closely what many people have (Read more…)

Warren Kinsella: BREAKING: James Lunney-related news

Has a new LA too! "@davidakin: Newly independent @jameslunneymp expected to speak in #HOC today after #QP” #cdnpoli

— Warren Kinsella (@kinsellawarren) April 1, 2015

Northern Reflections: The Amazing Transparent Man


Stephen Poloz, the Governor of the Bank of Canada, says that the economic numbers in the first quarter of this year will be “atrocious” — something that Stephen Harper knows full well. Therefore, Crawford Killian writes:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, a guy who reportedly cowered in a closet while the guns roared in the hallway, has collected his wits and mapped out a whole new course to a new majority with admirable speed. By parlaying one mentally ill drug addict into a terrorist threat, he created the embryo of a Canadian police state in Bill (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Hither And Thither

For a government whose every policy seems to be concocted with an eye to re-election, it is not surprising that Finance Minister Joe Oliver has not yet firmed up a date for this year’s budget. After all, he and the rest of the cabal need to know how effective their war on Canadian peace-of-mind is going first.

Have they, for example, succeeded, via Bill -C-51, in diverting the masses away from what heretofore has been their biggest concern, the economy, now forecast to have a rough year ahead thanks largely to the sharp drop in oil prices? Are lavish tax (Read more…)

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Getting what you pay for

Moody’s upgraded the province’s financial outlook from negative to stable, saying, “The province has presented a credible plan of consistent balanced budgets with little risk that the debt burden will exceed current forecasts.”

Sure. I believe that. However, journalist like Matt Taibbi would not. This is from his Rolling Stone article The Last Mystery of the Financial Crisis: But what about the ratings agencies? Isn’t it true that almost none of the fraud that’s swallowed Wall Street in the past decade could have taken place without companies like Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s rubber-stamping it? Aren’t they guilty, (Read more…)

Warren Kinsella: 2015, not 1815: this is truly shocking, and it happened in Canada


WINDSOR, Ont. — A black man found a noose on his truck and another near his work station at an auto plant that is being retooled in this southwestern Ontario city.

The victim, in his late 40s, was shaken but declined to speak about the incidents, officials said Monday. Police are investigating.

The man, who is from Windsor, is among hundreds of workers involved in a $2-billion retooling project at a Fiat Chrysler minivan assembly plant. Auto production has been shut down during the revamping.

The Post has extensively covered this incident – this hate crime – as well (Read more…)

Recreating Eden: This is Not a Poisson d’avril: The Rivers May Not Run Much Longer

Thinking about contact between humans and nature, particularly with the world’s big rivers.  Kept coming across the important role they played in the peopling of the world, as highways for travel and as sources of food. 

Two things stand out today, April Fool’s Day, which in French is Poisson d’avril:

First, that we’ve made a mess of most of them by dumping our waste in them.

Second, many are going to disappear due to climate change. Those rising in the mountains where glaciers are melting are particularly at risk, as are those of California where the fourth (Read more…)