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Politics and its Discontents: Industry Self-Regulation – Another Update

Last week I wrote two posts on the Harper regime’s ideological decision not to impose mandatory reporting of drug shortages on the pharmaceutical industry. The government instead has placed its market-driven faith on a voluntary system, with results nearly as disastrous as those in Canada’s food industry, which also enjoys a high degree of . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Industry Self-Regulation – Another Update

Leftist Jab: Most Delusional Politician of 2012: Gerry Ritz

Ralph Wiggum would be a better Agriculture Minister than Gerry Ritz

In 2008, Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz was faced with a listeriosis crisis that killed 17 people.

In a conference call with bureaucrats and scientists, he joked:

This is like a death by a thousand cuts. Or should I say cold cuts. Zinger! I’m . . . → Read More: Leftist Jab: Most Delusional Politician of 2012: Gerry Ritz

Alberta Diary: Despite plans to reopen next week, ripples from XL Foods closing may spread

Everything from ranches to feedlots to auction operations not quite like this one could be affected by a financial disaster at Nilsson Brothers Inc., the owner of XL Foods in Brooks.

With reports yesterday the XL Foods meatpacking plant in Brooks is likely to reopen in a week, media attention is bound to . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Despite plans to reopen next week, ripples from XL Foods closing may spread

Alberta Diary: Tweetergate? Meatergate? For heaven’s sake, stop her before she Tweets again!

Alberta’s Wildrose Opposition Leader Danielle Smith Tweeting “let them eat steaks” over the worldwide web. Injudicious Alberta politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The offending Tweet; the real Ms. Smith.

Alberta Opposition Leader Memo to Self: Whatever was I thinking?

Whoever does Wildrose Party Leader Danielle “Marie Antoinette” Smith’s Tweeting for . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: Tweetergate? Meatergate? For heaven’s sake, stop her before she Tweets again!

Alberta Diary: The XL Foods E. coli Crisis: Is the media asking the right questions?

The Edmonton Journal’s front page on Friday. Below: Brian Nilsson apologizing, Lee Nilsson, the Mannix brothers, Fred and Ron. All photos grabbed from the Internet.

Postmedia News, owner of Alberta’s two largest newspapers, was so relieved when one of the brothers who own troubled XL Foods Ltd. in this province’s southeast finally emerged . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: The XL Foods E. coli Crisis: Is the media asking the right questions?

somecanuckchick dot com: When is an Agriculture minister ^NOT an Agriculture minister?

Silence is golden.

A proverbial saying…

With respect to the Harper government, specifically the Agriculture minister and the XL Foods recall, saying nothing is preferable to speaking.

For those of you keeping track…

It has been 1 week and 1 day since Gerry Ritz, the Minister of Agriculture, updated Canadians on anything pertaining . . . → Read More: somecanuckchick dot com: When is an Agriculture minister ^NOT an Agriculture minister?

Montreal Simon: Harperland and the Giant Slaughterhouse

The Con Meat Scandal has produced a lot of disturbing images. The sight of Gerry Ritz being hustled away by his handlers, after being unable to answer even a couple of questions from the media. All that ghastly shiny hamburger meat, staring out at us from every newspaper and TV set, and almost daring . . . → Read More: Montreal Simon: Harperland and the Giant Slaughterhouse

350 or bust: 28 Hours Without Hydro: Thoughts On Thanks And Tainted Meat

Here in Canada it’s Thanksgiving Monday, when we Canucks consume turkey (or tofurkey, depending on preference), mashed potatoes, and pumpkin pie a month earlier than our southern neighbours, although they also have a long weekend, thanks to Columbus Day. It’s a good thing the featured meat of this Canadian holiday isn’t roast beef, as across . . . → Read More: 350 or bust: 28 Hours Without Hydro: Thoughts On Thanks And Tainted Meat

Politics and its Discontents: Ministerial Responsibility

Does anyone remember that quaint notion?

During the lead-up to the Falkands War, the British Foreign Secretary, Lord Carrignton, and two junior ministers resigned. They took the blame for Britain’s poor preparations [for the war]and plans to decommission HMS Endurance, the navy’s only Antarctic patrol vessel.

Since those days, the concept of . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Ministerial Responsibility

Alberta Diary: XL Foods, Tories and a frightened, politicized inspection agency offer a textbook case of brand destruction

“If it ain’t Alberta, it ain’t beef!” Not any more, though, thanks to the efforts of Alberta politicians, companies and the federal food inspection agency. From left to right above: Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry “Cold Cuts” Ritz, Alberta Agriculture Minister Verlyn Olson and Alberta Premier Alison Redford. Actual politicians may not appear exactly . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: XL Foods, Tories and a frightened, politicized inspection agency offer a textbook case of brand destruction

Politics and its Discontents: In Praise of Thanksgiving

I’m especially thankful this year for turkey.

H/t somecanuckchick Recommend this Post

Politics and its Discontents: Chopped Liver, Everyone?

Comedians like Don Rickles, whenever he felt slighted, would turn to host Johnny Carson and ask, “What am I, chopped liver?”

I couldn’t help but think of that line when I read this story in today’s Star, which reveals the following:

[The Canadian Food Inspection Agency] stopped allowing XL Foods to export . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Chopped Liver, Everyone?

Politics and its Discontents: Everyone is a Politician These Days

Echoing the Conservative government’s ‘hang tough’ attitude that means never having to say you’re sorry, XL Foods had this to say about the tainted beef scandal they are at the centre of:

“XL Foods is committed to producing high-quality beef products and the safety and well-being of our consumers is our number one priority. . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Everyone is a Politician These Days

Politics and its Discontents: Assumptions Can Be Dangerous

[Former Ontario Premier Mike] Harris assumed that small Ontario towns like Walkerton would have the good sense to keep their drinking water clean.

[Prime Minister Stephen] Harper assumed that profit-making companies would make sure that their consumers received safe products.

In both cases, they were wrong.

This excerpt from Thomas . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Assumptions Can Be Dangerous

Politics and its Discontents: Not To State The Obvious But ….

Canada’s food safety regime failed us

So goes the title of The Star’s editorial this morning as it raises some very pressing questions about how over three weeks elapsed between the discovery of E.coli in the XL Foods’ Lakeside Packers plant in Alberta and the meat recall that will likely be the largest in . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: Not To State The Obvious But ….

Politics and its Discontents: I’ll Have a Veggie Burger, Please

In light of the widespread dissemination of tainted beef by XL Foods, one has to ask the role changes made by the Harper regime in Canada’s food inspection process played.

According to a Globe report,

The list of stores and products affected by the recall is now so long that consumers . . . → Read More: Politics and its Discontents: I’ll Have a Veggie Burger, Please

Alberta Diary: If it’s Alberta, it ain’t goin’ across the border: time to connect the dots on XL Foods

“If it ain’t Alberta, it ain’t beef!” Alberta Beef Producers’ advertising models may not be exactly as illustrated. Below: I [HEART] [ALBERTA MAP] [BEETS]; Alberta Agriculture Minister Verlyn Olson and Premier Alison Redford.

Do you remember that brilliant advertising campaign, “If it ain’t Alberta, it ain’t beef”?

Well, nowadays – as the continental . . . → Read More: Alberta Diary: If it’s Alberta, it ain’t goin’ across the border: time to connect the dots on XL Foods