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The Sir Robert Bond Papers: Rumpole and the Judge’s Wage #nlpoli

How hard can it be to figure out what Provincial Court Judges should get paid to do their work dispensing justice all around the province?

Apparently, it can be quite difficult.

There’s a teeny amendment bill in the House that sets a new date for a report from a commission that has to be set up to figure out the judges’ pay and benefits:

(1.2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), the next report required under subsection (1) after September 30, 2010 shall be presented to the minister not later than December 31, 2015.

Once the thing gets through the House,  this “Act is considered to have come into force on September 29, 2014.”

That’s six months ago.

What the heck has been going on all this time?

(Read more…)

Warren Kinsella: In this week’s Hill Times: scandals are boring, and Mike Duffy’s is no exception

In a week and a bit, the trial of Mike Duffy will commence. Official Ottawa will be agog, apoplectic and absorbed—via Twitter, via Facebook, via regular breathless and live televised reports, issued from just outside the battlefield, i.e., the Ontario Court of Justice, at the Ottawa Courthouse on Elgin Street.

The Rest of Canada—that is, Joe and Jane Frontporch, who live and work South of the Queensway—will not give a rat’s ass. They will not pay the Duffy-related doings any heed. They will not care.

They shouldn’t.

Now, now, a caveat: it is, of course, important that our (Read more…) - Alberta Politics: Prentice to honour 2016 fixed election date, plans tough climate change targets

In a surprising reversal, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice announced that the next provincial election will be held in spring 2016, not in 2015 as many Albertans expected. “Three years ago, Progressive Conservative MLAs passed Alberta’s fixed election date law,” said… Continue Reading →

The Common Sense Canadian: DFO clings to bad science, refuses to close herring fishery in Area 7

Despite harsh criticism from scientists and First Nations of DFO’s flawed forecasting methods for the health of herring stocks, the department’s Director General, Pacific Region Sue Farlinger acknowledged today that she was unable to commit to the closure of a gillnet fishery in Area 7.

Farlinger flew to Bella Bella Monday afternoon for emergency meetings with Heiltsuk leaders after they occupied the central coast fisheries office in opposition to a planned gillnet fishery in their territory.

“It is my intention to avoid at all costs a fishery in Area 7,” Farlinger told a gathering of upset Heiltsuk First Nations outside (Read more…)

Warren Kinsella: Sad announcement

I don’t want to make a big deal out of this, but I figured I’d let folks know that  we have gone our separate ways. Have agreed to be friends, etc. All of that. But, after nearly six great years, it’s time to move on. And that’s all I’m going to be saying about it. 


Morton's Musings: Nunavut’s Liquor Restriction Systems, Bootlegging and Substance Abuse

The Liquor Act (Nunavut) provides Nunavummiut with a ranked liquor restriction structure based on four systems, ranging from general access alcohol to total exclusion. 

Communities choose their system by local plebiscite 

These systems are:  

1. An unrestricted system in which the community is subject only to the general liquor laws of Nunavut;2. A restricted . . . → Read More: Morton’s Musings: Nunavut’s Liquor Restriction Systems, Bootlegging and Substance Abuse

Environmental Law Alert Blog: Green Groups Overjoyed by New Budget Bill, Contains Everything We Ever Wanted

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Media Release: Green groups across Canada celebrate the new federal omnibus budget bill, which makes sweeping improvements to environmental laws in Canada and rectifies all the harm done by the last two omnibus bills, Bill C-38 and Bill C-45.  

Federal government tables greenest budget bill in Canadian history, surprising environmental groups

read more

Northern Insight / Perceptivity: Changes inevitable for Teck Resources

Teck Resources and its associates invested more than $2.25 million in contributions to political friends in British Columbia. That was a good deal for BC Liberals but, whether or not it benefited shareholders – the largest of which are Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., China Investment Corporation and Blackrock Inc. – is uncertain.

In recent days, Teck Resources has denied rumours of a merger or takeover involving Antofagasta PLC, a significantly larger company controlled by Chile’s wealthiest family, headed by Iris Fontbona-Luksic. According to the company, about 20% of Teck’s non-current assets are in Chile.

Teck Resources Share Prices

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Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Night Cat Blogging

Cats in the window.

Canadian Dimension: KC Adams: Perception, imagery and the fragility of prejudice

Perception • Photo by KC Adams

“The world in which you were born is just one model of reality. Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you; they are unique manifestations of the human spirit.” -Wade Davis


The publication of a controversial MacLean’s article in January, 2015 sent shockwaves through Winnipeg. Nancy MacDonald’s 6,000-word exposé — “Welcome to Winnipeg: Where Canada’s racism problem is at its worst” — proved a bleak, stirring and uncomfortable read. It was a proverbial wake-up call to a city already numbed by the tragic killing and attempted murder of two young indigenous (Read more…) MPs aren’t going to be able to ignore this

Join the Week of Education to Stop Secret Police Bill C-51   The government is about to ram through a reckless, dangerous and ineffective “secret police” law called Bill C-51. Join the twitter Thunderclap to share our message against C-51 on April 13th – right before MPs return to Ottawa for the spring parliamentary session. Help us go viral!

read more

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Canada’s Economy: Not Exactly Healthy

If you are a worker, you already know that Canada’s economy is a mess.  The only people who don’t seem to know it are at the top.

Press Progress published a very detailed analysis of how messed up our economy is today.  A few of the highlights: First, the good news: Corporate Canada’s profits have hit a 27-year high, according to a new report by CIBC World Markets. Bay Street has never been happier, right? 

Well, there’s just one little catch: new Statistics Canada data shows the Canadian economy shrank in January. All those layoffs and store closures you’ve (Read more…) Tell Ron Wyden: Don’t Fast Track Internet Censorship

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Montreal Simon: It’s a Plane…It’s a Bird…It’s Pamela Wallin!!!

Well I knew it wouldn't be long before she was back in the news, and sure enough Pamela Wallin is back.And not in a good way. New court documents filed by the RCMP allege suspended senator Pamela Wallin fraudulently billed the Senate for more than $25,000 in expenses she incurred on trips to Toronto and Guelph “to pursue her personal and business interests.”And of course the timing couldn't be worse.Read more »

DeSmogBlog: Canada Will Miss Its Climate Target And We’ll All Miss Out

I don’t think anyone in Canada expects our good country to meet its climate target — even with the imminent pressure of the UNFCCC meeting in Paris later this year weighing down on our collective shoulders.

We have no reason to harbour that expectation given that our own federal government via Environment Canada has been telling us for years that Canada is running off the climate track and — because of growing emissions largely from the oil and gas sector — we are getting farther and farther away from meeting our government’s self-imposed climate targets.

Because of that climate failure, Canada is (Read more…)

Environmental Law Alert Blog: Green Groups Overjoyed by New Budget Bill, Contains Everything We Ever Wanted

Wednesday, April 1, 2015 TechDirt: The TPP has set its sights on free speech and fair use

Fair use – the building block of remix art – is under threat. 

Article by Mike Masnick via TechDirt

We’ve been writing a lot about the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement over the past few years. There are many, many problems with it, but the two key ones are the intellectual property chapter and the investment chapter. Unlike some who are protesting TPP, we actually think that free trade is generally a good thing and important for the economy — but neither the intellectual property section nor the investment chapter are really about free trade. In many (Read more…)

The Moncton Times@Transcript - Good and Bad: March 31: Norbert Cunningham’s little thinking cap….

…put it on Norbert.

In his column for March 30, Norbert writes (of the Atcon scandal in which the province gave away $70 million to a company against the advice of senior civil servants. So Norbert says, ” New Brunswickers are old hands at scandal….thanks to political recklessness…”  Note his last words – “political recklessness”.

The scandal here is that politicians were bribed to give $70 million dollars to a private company. Now, close your eyes, Norbert, and think really hard. If the politicians were bribed, then somebody must have bribed them. Blame the politicians by all means (Read more…)

Queer-liberal: Trans Day of Visibility!

On this ‘Trans Day of Visibility,’ I give you Laverne Cox.

And a link to this nice story about Yasir Naqvi and Cheri DiNovo working together to fight federal Tory anti-trans shenanigans. 

Warren Kinsella: If you are Stephen Harper

…you know you couldn’t pay for coverage this helpful. Wow.

Cowichan Conversations: Furstenau–Shawnigan’s Contaminant Risk Will Loom Forever

Shawnigan’s CVRD Director Sonia Furstenau is on a mission to persuade the BC Liberal Cabinet to stand up for the Shawnigan comminities, watershed, lake, creek. aquifer and drinking water.

This is from a letter to the editor-Victoria Times Colonist

Re: “Guard the water supply,” editorial, March 24.

Sonia Furstenau- Shawnigan’s CVRD Director

The people of Shawnigan do not want “careful monitoring” or “well-designed emergency plans.”No amount of human engineering can compensate for the total unsuitability of a contaminated dump sitting above an aquifer and next to a stream that feeds into the lake that is our source of drinking water.

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Canadian Dimension: SYRIZA’s Two Months in Government: Difficulties and Challenges

Photo by Ben Folley

The First Round of Negotiations

Almost a month after the agreement of the 20th of February between the new Greek government, the European Institutions and the IMF, we need to know where we stand. “We” in this case is not the government. It is not even Syriza’s members and voters. “We” includes all those who understand the necessity of a strong democratic reply to aggressive neoliberalism and the austerity it imposes on the people of Europe, and who perceive the victory of Syriza as a gleam of hope against a conservative and reactionary turn of Europe. (Read more…)

Canadian Dimension: No One Is Free Until All Are Free

Illustration by Denitza Tchacarova

This column is adapted from a talk Chris Hedges gave Friday night at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver.

VANCOUVER, British Columbia—The scourge of male violence against women will not end if we dismantle the forces of global capitalism. The scourge of male violence exists independently of capitalism, empire and colonialism. It is a separate evil. The fight to end male violence against women, part of a global struggle by women, must take primacy in our own struggle. Women and girls, especially those who are poor and of color, cannot take part in a liberation movement until (Read more…)

DeSmogBlog: B.C. Mayors Declare ‘Non-Confidence’ in NEB, Call on Feds to Halt Review of Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline

The mayors of Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, City of North Vancouver, Victoria, Squamish and Bowen Island have declared their “non-confidence” in the National Energy Board’s (NEB) review of Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain oil pipeline and are calling on the federal government to put the current process on hold until a full public hearing process is re-instated.

“It has become apparent that the NEB process does not constitute a ‘public hearing’ and is completely inadequate to assess the health and safety risks of a proposed pipeline through major metropolitan areas, and the potential risks of shipping bitumen oil to (Read more…)

Terahertz: Lunney unleashed

Citing media “intolerance and bigotry”, anti-science Canadian MP James Lunney has quit the government caucus to sit as an independent. Among Lunney’s claim to the crown as Canada’s least scientifically literate MP are:

He doesn’t believe in evolution He’s a chiropractor He’s claimed there’s a link between vaccines and autism He doesn’t believe the climate is changing

In his surreal press release (dated March 31, not April 1), he states that he will address his religious beliefs in Parliament at his next opportunity, which sounds like it will be a hoot. Lunney claims that Christians are being persecuted in Canada, (Read more…)