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Pushed to the Left and Loving It: The Most Powerful Symbol You Will See This Election

I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, or free to choose those who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind. John Diefenbaker

On January 6, 1941, Franklin Roosevelt, in his State of the Union Address; put forward four tenets of freedom that every citizen should enjoy:Freedom of SpeechFreedom of WorshipFreedom from WantFreedom from FearI watched a short Canadian newsreel recently, (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: Pushed to the Left and Loving It: The Most Powerful Symbol You Will See This Election

ParliamANT Hill: Terrorism suspects ‘probably’ on RCMP’s list, public safety minister says

Satire inspired by this headline:

ParliamANT Hill: New VeterAnts Affairs minister cuts off veterAnts’ advocates from advisory role

Satire inspired by this headline:

The Progressive Right: Canada’s Veterans Still Need Protection from Conservatives ( #cdnpoli )

Canada’s veterans rejoiced when Julian Fantino was finally booted from Veterans Affairs on January 5. Mr. Fantino was replaced by Durham Conservative MP, Erin O’Toole. Ostensibly, a sound pick – a former RCAF officer. Someone with such a background, you’d think would bring a sympathetic ear to what veterans need. You would be forgiven if you had forgotten that O’Toole fully parroted Julian Fantino’s hard line stance against honouring veterans benefits at every turn – fully endorsing the government’s inaction in the care of Canada’s veterans.

You would argue that it was up to O’Toole to simply toe the party (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week.

- Stephen Burgen reports on Thomas Piketty’s view that it’s long past time for voters to have anti-austerity options where none existed in the past. And along similar lines, Murray Dobbin sets out the stark choice facing Canadians: Canadians will have to continue to watch their Scandinavian neighbours use the wheel and prosper while we remain captives to the free market priesthood. Norway is the logical choice of neighbour to compare ourselves to, if you can stomach it. In Canada we have virtually given away our energy heritage through criminally low royalty rates over a (Read more…)

ParliamANT Hill: JuliAnt F’Antino out as veterAnts affairs minister

Satire inspired by this headline:

The Progressive Right: Veterans Need Protection from Conservatives, Part One Thousand ( #cdnpoli )

Conservatives have continuously let down veterans since coming to power.

We’ve since learned that the Conservative Party let $1.1 billion (with a ‘B’) lapse in veteran funding. Essentially, Veterans Affairs had $1.1 billion budgeted to spend on veterans’ programs and the ministry did not spend it. Simply put – the demand for services was there, but for whatever reason, did not spend the money.

Now, Veterans Affairs is on the attack. The Veterans Affairs department says some veterans are exaggerating their injuries to continue receiving financial benefits from the government and to avoid joining the work force. [Canada. (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Internal CPC polling on Veterans Affairs issues must be terrible.

If the Conservative government – led by Harper in Question Period no less – has now decided they’re going to try to blame the Liberals for the current mess in Veteran Affairs (led by their mess of a minister Fantino), polling and reaction to their current shabby treatment of Veterans must be pretty bad.

Their argument gets a tad undercut however when they’ve had 10 years to fix any shortcomings (which Harper and party supported in 2005 and enthusiastically implemented in 2006), and are now in court trying to defend it against angry Veterans (and trying to use the argument (Read more…)

ParliamANT Hill: Overseas war graves neglected, Veterants Affairs review finds

Satire inspired by this headline:

Eh Types: Playing Soldiers

At the Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa this year there was an impostor. Frank Gervais attended ceremonies in Ottawa in a military uniform, but was later found to be playing a despicable game of dress up. He is facing well deserved charges, but is not the impostor I was referring to. The impostor was Prime […]

ParliamANT Hill: F’Antino’s cabinet resignation demanded by opposition

Satire inspired by these headlines:   (Leona Aglukkaq reads newspaper in Question Period)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Jeremy Warren reports on the latest Canadians for Tax Fairness events working to ensure that Cameco and other megacorporations pay at least their fair share. And Sheila Block and Kaylie Tiessen point out that Ontario could do plenty to reduce its deficit by reining in regressive tax giveaways.

- APTN documents the devastating reality that people who can’t afford overpriced food in Northern communities are having to forage through garbage dumps in order to scrape by. And naturally, Leona Aglukkaq and the Cons are concerned…that anybody’s finding out about that fact, leading (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Quick question/poll

Is Julian Fantino (Minister of Veteran Affairs) the worst Cabinet Minister in the Harper Conservative government right now? That’s saying something in this government, but some folks are now openly asking if he should be replaced. His department faced a withering Auditor-General report on the inefficiencies of the Department is getting aid and help to Veterans, but he was conveniently out of the country so he didn’t have to face the music.

The answer is yes, though I’m not exactly sure anyone who would replace Fantino would do much better. As always with the Harper government, unless public opinion polls (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Dennis Raphael and Toba Bryant write about the devastating health effects of income inequality in Canada: Imagine the response, from industry, government and the public, if a plane was crashing every day. If there were something that killed as many people in a day as this kind of disaster, you’d expect it to provoke a similarly concentrated response.

A recent report by Statistics Canada highlights a preventable cause of premature death that is having exactly that kind of impact. This study demonstrates that income inequality is associated with the premature death of 40,000 (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week.

- Jonas Fossli Gherso discusses the unfortunate (and unnecessary) acceptance of burgeoning inequality even by the people who suffer most from its presence. And Ryan Meili interviews Gabor Mate about the ill health effects of an economic system designed to keep people under stress: (T)he very nature of the system in which people live their lives is a significant source of illness. Now there are obvious factors like environmental pollution, toxins, and then of course there are the social determinants of health that you write about in A Healthy Society: the impact of (Read more…)

Left Over: Keeping Remembrance Day in My Own Way….

Gap’s ‘Remembrance Day deal’ not appropriate, Toronto veteran says ‘The point is not to exploit and profit from this day,’ says Cpl. Chuck Krangle

CBC News Posted: Nov 10, 2014 11:10 PM ET Last Updated: Nov 11, 2014 10:57 AM ET

Have to agree with Cpl. Krangle, it is beyond inappropriate to exploit Memorial Day with yet another phony holiday ‘sale’ and shows no respect for our veterans, living and dead..

Then again, no ‘sale’ on any public holiday advertised as such is truly appropriate..but you hear little if any criticism of it..Still the media is happy (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that for your Tuesday reading.

- Robert Reich discusses how our economic system is set up to direct risk toward the people who can least afford to bear it (while also directing the spoils to those who need them least): Bankruptcy was designed so people could start over. But these days, the only ones starting over are big corporations, wealthy moguls, and Wall Street.

Corporations are even using bankruptcy to break contracts with their employees. When American Airlines went into bankruptcy three years ago, it voided its labor agreements and froze its employee pension plan.

After it emerged (Read more…)

The Progressive Right: Canada’s Veterans Need Protection from Conservatives, Part 4 ( #cdnpoli #cpc )

As we’ve previously reviewed on this blog, the Harper Government™ and their treatment of Canada’s veterans is nothing short of disgusting. To suggest that the Conservative Minister for Veterans Affairs, Julian Fantino, is the worst Veterans Affairs minister Canada has ever had might be putting it mildly.

Yesterday, Julian Fantino defended the government’s decision to promote Veterans Affairs via Twitter at the total cost of $100,000 while still defending the government’s record of not providing benefits to the Last Post Fund, denying veterans benefits, and closing Veterans Affairs offices.

Adding repeated insult to injury, the promoted tweet advertise the (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Kingdom of Fear

There was a revealing moment during the CBC's coverage of the National Day of Honour, when an armoured car and other military vehicles rolled on to Parliament Hill.And for a few seconds at least, the CBC reporter Hannah Thibedeau seemed genuinely shocked by the sight. She quickly regained her composure, and seemed almost embarrassed by her reaction.But I thought she should have trusted her first instinct, for I too thought that there was something not quite right, or Canadian, about that invasion of Parliament Hill…Read more »

Maple-Flavoured Politics: The Harper Government: Doesn’t Play Well With Others

Is it me or do you get the sense that if a primary school teacher were grading the “Harper Government,” as it like to call itself, the phrase “doesn’t play well with others” would figure prominently on the report card? Of course, the opposition is the opposition so you would expect there to be some … Continue Reading

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper’s Shameful Day of Dishonour

As you may know, Stephen Harper has proclaimed that next Friday should be a National Day of Honour. The Government of Canada has set aside this day to mark the end of our country’s military mission in Afghanistan. A national ceremony on Parliament Hill will pay tribute to the fallen, the sacrifices of the wounded, and the special burden borne by families. And is furiously beating a tiny drum trying to whip up our patriotic fervour, by among other things, promoting this video on his propaganda site.Read more »

Montreal Simon: Stephen Harper and the Con Day of Infamy

It couldn't have been a more welcome sight. The last Canadian soldiers returning from Afghanistan. If I had been watching them coming in to land, I would have been waving my arms in the air, and shouting "Glory Hallelujah, we are free at last." And this couldn't have been a happier sight.

There were tears, smiles and warm embraces as loved ones greeted the final homecoming flight from Kabul – the last soldiers to return from a costly military mission that spanned more than a decade and claimed the lives of 162 Canadians.

But then there was the (Read more…)

Montreal Simon: Justin Stark and the Con War On Our Veterans

This is the story of two cheques.This big fat one…

The one Nigel Wright sent to Mike Duffy.

To cover up a sordid scandal.And this one, in the miserable amount of one cent…

That went to Justin Stark who killed himself after serving his country. Read more »

Montreal Simon: The Harper Regime and the Never-ending War on Veterans

It's hard to believe after what the Harper Cons have done to our veterans, that they could treat or betray them even more than they already have.But that's exactly what they are doing. First they closed down those veteran service centres for no good reason.Now they're going after their healthcare plans. Read more »

The Progressive Right: Canada’s Veterans Need Protection from Conservatives, Part 2 ( #cpc #cdnpoli )

On the following motion. That, in the opinion of the House, the men and women who bravely serve Canada in the armed forces should be able to count on the government for support in their time of need, and that the government should demonstrate this support by (a) immediately addressing the mental health crisis facing Canadian soldiers and veterans by hiring appropriate mental health professionals; (b) reversing its decision to close veterans’ offices; and (c) prioritizing and concluding the over 50 outstanding boards of inquiry on military suicides so that grieving families may have answers and closure.

Conservatives voted unanimously (Read more…)