Politics and its Discontents: “There’s always a context in which these things take place.”

So says Toronto police spokesman and perennial apologist Mark Pugash about the beating administered by the police to Santokh Bola, a victim of what the authorities admit was a ‘mistaken arrest.’ Sure looks to me like just another case of police brutality, something the Toronto constabulary is becoming notorious for: Bola’s lawyer, Michael Smitiuch, told ...

Politics and its Discontents: Another Indictment Of Police Leadership

Anyone who reads this blog regularly knows that I am a regular critic of the police. While recognizing the at-times difficult job they have and the very real potential of becoming jaded because of the criminal element with which they must deal, I have never had any sympathy, understanding or tolerance for the abuse of ...

Politics and its Discontents: Police Torturers And Their Enablers

It is heartening to know that the Hamilton police are discharging their duties responsibly, as attested to by a video that went viral this week. However, to believe that all is well in policeland would be but a comforting illusion. Yesterday, Kev reported on the ‘excesses’ of some Toronto police whose actions, described by the ...

Politics and its Discontents: Toronto Police: Again and Again and Again ….

Albert Einstein famously defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. By that standard, perhaps both the Toronto Police force and I are insane; I seem to periodically write essentially the same blog post about their misbehaviour, and they seem to keep practising a disturbing pattern of conduct ...

Politics and its Discontents: Chief Blair’s Poodle Speaks

First, bullets flew through the Eaton Centre food court. Then, two weeks later, on a sun-filled patio in Little Italy. On Sunday, a man was shot while hundreds watched a fireworks display in the city’s east end. Just 24 hours before that, a stray bullet grazed a toddler’s leg in North York. Yet Mark Pugash, ...

Politics and its Discontents: Why The Star Is The Real ‘Newspaper Of Record’

Those who regularly read The Toronto Star will hardly be surprised to learn that it has just won five National Newspaper Awards for the excellence of its reporting, reporting that often results in some real benefits to society. A new benefit appears to be emerging as a result of its two-part investigation into police who ...

Politics and its Discontents: Police Who Lie Under Oath – Part 2

Part 2 of The Star series on the problem of police lying under oath is available on its website. Today’s coverage examines the lack consequences for such behaviour, many departments seeming to prefer a see-no-evil, hear-no-evil kind of approach. And as per his function, the always pugnacious Mark Pugash, Toronto Police spokesman, accuses the Star ...