Monday, October 16, 2017

For A Monday

Plenty of things happening ...

Dismayed at not being able to fleece the working masses, those who would not define the middle-class walk back from their "taxing everyone back into the Stone Age" scheme and live to try again another day:

On Monday, at Stouffville’s (crucially) family-run Pastaggio restaurant, reporters wanted to talk to Finance Minister Bill Morneau. It made sense. He was there. He and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau were there to announce a nine per cent small business tax rate by 2019, down from 10.5 per cent currently, as part of a highly technical and controversial package of proposed changes to Canada’s tax code. You know — finance minister stuff.

Moreover, Morneau has been in the news for his “French villa controversy,” which is a terrible thing for a politician to have a controversy about. (He owns it with his wife, via a holding company. He forgot to disclose its existence.) More recent strange news: even as he ministered Canada’s finances, Canada’s finance minister had not placed his considerable financial holdings in a blind trust.

But when the first reporter up to the mic asked to address her questions to Morneau, Trudeau puffed out his chest. “I’ll take ‘em,” he told her, oozing smarm. “You’ve got an opportunity to chat with the prime minister.”

A second reporter asked for Morneau. Responded Trudeau — bewilderingly, obnoxiously: “You have to ask the question of me first, because you get the chance to talk to the prime minister.”

Morneau did eventually get to defend himself on the question of his assets: he said he told the ethics commissioner everything and followed her advice. It’s not a great defence. Mary Dawson’s not a great ethics commissioner. But it’s exactly the one Trudeau offered on Morneau’s behalf before ceding him the podium. Why not just let the guy talk? Farmers and doctors and Italian restaurant owners might not much like Morneau these days, but he’s less likely to jam his foot in his mouth than Trudeau.


The finance minister is under fire for not disclosing to the ethics commissioner the private company that owns his family’s villa in France.

It's a set-up that gives Morneau’s family a tax advantage with regard to inheritance.

Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner Mary Dawson apparently knew of the villa, but not of the private corporation.

(Sidebar: this Mary Dawson.)


On Monday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Finance Minister Bill Morneau suddenly, magically announced small business tax rates would drop to 9% from 10.5%.

Magically, because in 2016 Morneau insisted he was locking in the higher rate for the foreseeable future. What changed?

It’s pretty obvious. A summer of discontent.

The change wasn’t made for sound public policy reasons (though we believe lowering taxes is almost always sound public policy) or because the Liberals have grown suddenly adverse to taxes.

No, they found a political way to deal with the blow back they’ve been receiving on a whole slew of tax policy screw ups.

Maybe the Liberals need extra money to pay for more wreathes to commemorate our war dead or better monitoring of that financial black hole known as the "First Nations".

How can coffers be filled with things like accountability or wreathes?

If immigration is meant to supply Canada with the best and the brightest then revert to the old scheme of vetting for skills:

The Liberal government is finalizing its 2018 immigration plan, aiming to strike the right balance amid a global migration crisis, a surge in illegal border-crossers and persistent labour gaps across the country.

Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen recently wrapped up cross-country consultations and is preparing to table the annual immigration levels in the House of Commons by the Nov. 1 deadline
As he sets next year's target for the number of newcomers allowed into the country, the government's goal is to attract top talent in a competitive global market while reuniting families and offering refuge to people displaced by disaster and conflict.

"Canada's immigration system continues to be based on compassion, efficiency and economic opportunity for all, while protecting the health, safety and security of Canadians," reads a statement from Hussen to CBC News.

"Canada's system of immigration has been recognized internationally as a thoughtful, responsible approach that takes into consideration the need for more immigrants while balancing our fiscal and global responsibilities."

Conservative Immigration critic Michelle Rempel said the government has so far failed to develop a sound strategy to ensure immigrants help fill labour gaps in certain sectors and in remote and less populated parts of the country.  

"There are some bigger policy questions around how the government is incenting people in high unemployment areas to be matched with existing work, and how the government is going to seek to pull people that are coming into the country, new Canadians, instead of becoming isolated in small pockets in major urban centres, how perhaps those streams could be used to bolster immigration needs in areas of high demand in the country, where people aren't settling," she told CBC News.

(Sidebar: because urban centres vote Liberal.)

North Korea rattles its sabre - again:

North Korea warned countries at the United Nations on Monday in a statement: don't join the United States in military action against the Asian state and you will be safe from retaliation.

The caution was contained in a copy of North Korean Deputy U.N. Ambassador Kim In Ryong's prepared remarks for a discussion on nuclear weapons by a U.N. General Assembly committee. However, Kim did not read that section out loud.

"As long as one does not take part in the U.S. military actions against the DPRK (North Korea), we have no intention to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against any other country," according to Kim's prepared remarks.

"The entire U.S. mainland is within our firing range and if the U.S. dares to invade our sacred territory even an inch it will not escape our severe punishment in any part of the globe," the statement read.

Perhaps Kim Jong-Un does not realise that without China's generous support, it could not be a global Scrappy-Doo.

Known sex abusers dig in for one last push in Raqqa:

The last of the few dozen ISIL holdouts inside the terrorist group’s de facto capital in Syria were mounting a final stand on Sunday, after a stream of militants surrendered under a deal brokered by local officials.

A U.S.-backed alliance known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, or SDF, said that 275 militants had left Raqqa’s city centre, along with their families, and that they would be interrogated and sent to court if they were suspected to have participated in killings.

Also - ignominious ends for ISIS child-rapists:

The ISIS once drew recruits from near and far with promises of paradise but now bodies of terrorists lie in mass graves or at the mercy of wild dogs as its "caliphate" collapses. Flies buzz around human remains poking through the dusty earth in the Iraqi town of Dhuluiyah, 90 kilometres (55 miles) north of Baghdad, at a hastily-dug pit containing the bodies of dozens of ISIS terrorists killed in 2015.

"They should have ended up in the stomachs of stray dogs," local police officer Mohammed al-Juburi told AFP. "We buried them here not out of love but because we wanted to avoid diseases."

Furious over a Kurdish referendum for an independent state, Iraqi forces seize Kirkuk:

Iraqi government forces captured the major Kurdish-held oil city of Kirkuk on Monday, responding to a Kurdish referendum on independence with a bold lightning strike that transforms the balance of power in the country.

Before I continue with the self-pitying squatters and their complaints-du-jour, I would like to start with Ibn Warraq:

An obsession with conspiracies leads to fatalism, a refusal to take charge of one's own destiny or to take responsibility for the manifest backwardness of one's own culture.

(Warraq, Ibn. Why the West Is the Best. Encounter Books, 2011. pg. 159)

And now:

A preschool English teacher was told to remove her hijab if she wanted to be hired by a school in Kuwait. The 23-year-old applied for a job in Kuwait’s the English Playgroup. After an interview, she received an email from a school official saying that her new job depended on whether she was OK with teaching without a hijab on.


Somali-Canadians left reeling after a bomb blast killed hundreds in Mogadishu over the weekend are calling for Canada to offer help to those affected by the horrific attack. ...

"Our prime minister has made a statement, and I think the statement is good, but not what we need at this moment," Ibrahim said in an interview on Monday, adding that the federal government should be helping get the wounded out of Mogadishu and into places where they can get adequate medical treatment.

(Sidebar: I thought that Canada was their country now. I guess not.)

It doesn't matter what anyone says at the show trial M-103 committee because its conclusion has long since been decided:

A big problem is the standing committee hasn’t clarified the term Islamophobia in the context of M103. Liberal MP Iqra Khalid, who crafted the motion, could have clarified the term but has neglected to do so.

The supporters of the motion claim that the commitment to avoid bigoted judgments is non-binding. However, many fear that it is merely a precursor to a bill condemning Islamophobia, which is a very nebulous notion.

I consider equating Islamophobia with anti-Semitism highly flawed. In committee, I will argue that the two are fundamentally different, are used in very different contexts and would also have completely different ramifications in the context of M-103.

Khalid has used the condemnation of anti-Semitism as a pretext to push for a similar response to what she considers Islamophobia.

Khalid's anti-Semitic co-religionists are more than happy to equate anti-semitism with their faulty notions of persecution of Islamists because it furthers an end.  For Miss Hassan, this article is a futile gesture and her belief that this motion is unpatriotic or un-Canadian is incredibly wrong-headed.  Why allow one religion (and a despotic one at that) be permitted to establish a blasphemy law and then Sharia over a country the foundations of which are entirely anti-thetical to that of a theocracy similar to Pakistan or Saudi Arabia, states that would otherwise have failed had the West never existed?

Also - this must be embarrassing:

A former lawyer for the Alberta Human Rights Commission has failed in his efforts to sue Sun Media over an allegedly defamatory column by Ezra Levant.

The suit has been thrown out of court for delay. Nothing has happened on the file since Sun Media filed its defence three years ago, although there are related defamation suits that remain active.
The litigation relates to comments Levant made in 2014 on The Source, his show on the defunct Sun News Network, and a column in Sun newspapers headlined, “Next stop, crazy town.”

In that column, Levant harshly criticized the actions of the Alberta Human Rights Commission and some of its employees, including Arman Chak, by reference to some of his previous writings about Bangladesh, Pakistan and Israel.

“The crazy keeps going down. You’ve gotta get out your shovel and dig to get to the crazy that’s underneath the crazy,” the column reads.

The saga of the disgraced movie producer, Harvey Weinstein, and his several foot-in-mouth apologists who knew of and tolerated the open secret of his abuse of young actresses for years (in the years he was successfully bringing in cash) slogs in with the absurd and the contrarian:

Alleging U.S. “rape culture” caused the Hollywood sex abusescandal, UK news site the Independent has claimed that only Islam can provide the answer to preventing violence against women.

(Sidebar: insert own Islamists and Western feminists commentary here.)


Mayim Bialik is responding to the criticism she is facing over an article she wrote about the allegations against Harvey Weinstein, insisting her words were taken out of context.
The Big Bang Theory actress wrote a New York Times article titled Being a Feminist in Harvey Weinstein’s World on Friday after more than 30 women came forward with allegations of sexual harassment and abuse against Weinstein.

In the article, Bialik wrote about her strong feminist stance and appeared to suggest she is “overlooked” in sexual harassment situations because she does not adhere to the classic standard of beauty in Hollywood.

“As a proud feminist with little desire to diet, get plastic surgery or hire a personal trainer, I have almost no personal experience with men asking me to meetings in their hotel rooms,” she wrote. 

“Those of us in Hollywood who don’t represent an impossible standard of beauty have the ‘luxury’ of being overlooked and, in many cases, ignored by men in power unless we can make them money.”
The 41-year-old also explained she makes choices she finds to “self-protecting and wise” to avoid any inappropriate situations.

“I have decided that my sexual self is best reserved for private situations with those I am most intimate with,” she wrote. “I dress modestly. I don’t act flirtatiously with men as a policy.”

“I am entirely aware that these types of choices might feel oppressive to many young feminists,” she added. “Women should be able to wear whatever they want. They should be able to flirt however they want with whomever they want. Why are we the ones who have to police our behavior? In a perfect world, women should be free to act however they want. But our world isn’t perfect. Nothing - absolutely nothing - excuses men for assaulting or abusing women. But we can’t be naive about the culture we live in.”

After the article was published, many people took to social media, including Patricia Arquette, accusing Bialik of victim blaming.

There is no excusing the fat slab of piggery that is Harvey Weinsten and his various pedophilic defenders but how many of his victims who have come out of the woodwork and the slow-to-judge-but-quick-to-pontificate friends in show biz could have turned on him and the other offenders ages ago but sat on it because he was a cash-cow? How is Miss Bialik's commentary (aside from her delusional ideas that feminism still means Susan B. Anthony and Jane Austen) "victim blaming" (victims no one cared about until now, one might add)? In what industry is debasement of a person and allowing one's self to be debased for profit standard? Would the likes of Emma Thompson excuse this sort of behaviour in any other professional environment?

There is so much wrong about this entire fiasco and so much blame to go around. Had any of the parties involved had shame, they would slink into obscurity.

But, you know, money and such.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Sunday Post
Let nothing trouble you, let nothing make you afraid. All things pass away. God never changes. Patience obtains everything. God alone is enough.

North Korea brings out the usual and tired canard of needing nuclear weapons to ward off the American menace that has attempted to feed the North Korean people since walking away in 1953:

A high-ranking North Korean official says the country’s development of nuclear weapons is necessary because of the threat posed by the United States and contends the nuclear program is for deterrence.

The deputy chairman of the parliament of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Ahn Dong Chun, made the comments Sunday at an assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union in St. Petersburg, Russia.

“Our country is being threatened, the very existence of the DPRK is at stake,” he said, referring to statements by President Donald Trump at the UN General Assembly.

“Our nuclear programs are nuclear deterrence programs aimed at protecting our independence; we have no choice but to develop our nuclear programs,” he said, according to Russian state news agency Tass.

How much of a menace could the US be if sending aid to a country where its plump madman-in-charge assassinated his half-brother?


Canada, which has no nuclear weapons, is generally an afterthought in these conversations, but that doesn’t mean there’s no cause for alarm. Over the four-hour briefing last month by experts from the government, the military and academia, the MPs on the Standing Committee on National Defence heard a simple but sober message: It is “only a matter of time” before North Korea develops a nuclear-armed ballistic missile capable of reaching North America, said Stephen Burt, assistant chief of defence intelligence. And Canada would be essentially defenceless should such a missile be launched.

Or as James Fergusson, director of the University of Manitoba’s Centre for Defence and Security Studies, testified in front of the Standing Committee, “We get on our knees and pray.”

While no one was paying attention, a gunman opened fire at a busy market in southern Sweden:

A GUNMAN has opened fire at a busy market in Trelleborg, Sweden.

Four people have been taken to hospital as a result of the incident which happened Thursday night local time, around 8am AEDT.

Police say the attack is not being investigated as terrorism. However it appears to be the latest in a string of violent gang-related incidents that have beset the Swedish nation.

I guess the Swedes owe Trump an apology.

I think it is perfectly acceptable to ask Singh - or any "Sikh-first" public personality - why he would tolerate the veneration of Talwinder Singh Parmar, one of the masterminds of the bombing of Air India 182. Does he regard the safety of all Canadians and how Canada views and treats terrorists as paramount or does he wish to appeal to a segment of an important voters block only?

It was his first day on the job as federal NDP leader, and in a television interview last week with the CBC’s Terry Milewski, Jagmeet Singh faced a question that on the surface seemed to have an obvious response.

Is it appropriate for Sikh temples in Canada to display posters hailing the alleged architect of the 1985 Air India bombing as a martyr?

The bombing of Air India Flight 182 killed 329 people — 280 of them Canadians. Talwinder Singh Parmar was killed in India by police in 1992 and never brought to trial for his alleged role in the plot, but subsequent inquiries into the bombing identified him as the leader of a conspiracy hatched in British Columbia to bring down the plane.

Singh, who is an observant Sikh, danced around the question. His first response was to caution against exaggerating the conflict between Sikhs and Hindus. He then condemned the “heinous massacre” of people aboard Flight 182, calling it a terrorist act.

Pressed a fourth time by Milewski to denounce the posters of Parmar, Singh replied, “I don’t know who was responsible, but I think we need to find out who’s truly responsible. We need to make sure that the investigation actually results in a conviction of someone who is actually responsible.”

Some commentators have argued it was unfair, even racist of Milewski to ask the question. Writing in Maclean’s, Arshy Mann said the question reflected “a double standard that a white, non-Sikh politician would never have to face.” He noted that when Patrick Brown was elected leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives, the CBC did not challenge him over his friendship with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. That friendship was forged at a time when Modi was an international pariah, accused of failing to stop the 2002 Gujarat anti-Muslim riots that left more than 1,000 people dead when he was chief minister for the state.

But for Bal Gupta, chairman of the Air India 182 Victims Families Association, Singh’s non-answer was a missed opportunity. “If leaders in Canada don’t disown terrorists and terrorism, then who would?” asked Gupta, whose wife Ramwati was killed in the bombing. He said families of the victims were very upset by Singh’s reply.

“You have to ask him whether he is representing all the Canadians or just one particular interest. I don’t know what is in his mind,” he said.

Singh is just another Trudeau but in Sikh form - fatuous, evasive, intellectually lightweight and clearly partisan.

A family in Ontario uses the human rights tribunal for their autistic son (because the legal system refuses to address the family's concerns and is loathe to abolish a system that is generally used for vendettas):

An Ontario family has launched a human rights complaint against a school board in an effort to get a popular form of therapy for autistic children provided to their son in class.

Beth Skrt of Mississauga, Ont., alleges the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board has consistently refused to allow her five-year-old son Jack to receive Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) in class.

She says Jack has been receiving and benefiting from the therapy at an off-site facility he attends multiple days a week. Her son is also supported by education resource workers in class but she argues they are not equipped to provide the same level of therapy.

Skrt says her family offered to cover the cost of private ABA professionals to work with her son at school, but she says the board won’t allow it.

I find "reconciliation" ridiculous but perhaps that's just me:

The decision to drop “chief” from titles — “chief financial officer,” “chief academic officer,” etc. — is being sold as a gesture of reconciliation toward Canada’s Indigenous people. “The word has a lot of meaning to our people,” Dr. Duke Redbird, the board’s curator of Indigenous art and culture, told the Toronto Star. “One of the things that we have found in the past is that the word ‘chief’ was used as a slang, pejorative word, describing anyone who happened to be of Indigenous background.”

That’s doubtlessly true, and tragic. Discrimination against Indigenous Canadians is a serious and ongoing issue. But dropping “chief” from job titles isn’t a serious response. It’s tokenism. 

If "chief" - a word that appears in many various contexts - is offensive then should someone like Theresa Spence be titled "Crook"?

This is what happens when one allows vain, petty, corrupt people assume positions of power which they lord over people in the most absurd fashions. One would think band corruption and poverty would be heftier issues.

I guess not.

It's just money:

Maybe you’re thinking, “Even if it’s a bit ridiculous, it’s ONLY $200,000 against a background of billions.” But is it? To me this is the most intriguing part of all. Blacklock’s quotes an e-mail (“It’s fresh. I love where this is going”) from someone who has the title “senior marketing advisor for the finance department”.

Am I the only one left asking, “Why the hell does the federal finance department need a marketing advisor?” The “senior” part denotes a six-figure salary, none of which is included in the cheque that was written to the nice creatives at McCann. Is the finance department a business whose revenues depend on effective advertising? Does Canada’s federal government have several finance departments contending with each other for market share?


What about people who were born or married into “comfortable,” even fabulously wealthy families? They can afford to hire expensive tax lawyers whose professional mission is to exploit loopholes in our arcane and exceedingly complex tax code. That explains the popularity of family trusts.

Let’s take a look at how they work. A parent lends money without limit to a trust. It invests the funds, makes a small interest payment to the donor and then distributes (or “sprinkles,” to use the new pejorative term) the income or capital gains from the investments to the donor’s offspring. Assuming the beneficiaries are in a lower tax bracket than the donor, the total tax bill for the family is reduced. 

Whatever amount the trust does not distribute attracts the top individual tax rate of up to 53 per cent, in contrast to a threatened 73 per cent rate on passive corporate income.

How is that different financially from income sprinkling or passive income in a personal corporation? It isn’t, yet Morneau’s proposal exempts trusts. Furthermore, the fortunate trust-fund kids receive income or capital gains with no obligation to work or contribute to the trust. It is a gift, pure and simple. That is not a problem in itself, but why then penalize a farmer’s family members who receive wages for helping with the harvest? Or a shop-owner’s kids who are paid for watching the counter?

While legally distinct, the two situations are also identical from a fairness perspective. A mother or father transfers income to a son or daughter to take advantage of their lower tax bracket. If the mother is a doctor with a personal corporation, watch out. But if the father has the wealth to set up a family trust, his trust-fund relatives are just fine, thank you.

Liberal white feminists in the West tend to ignore the plight of women not in their countries or immediate social circles because their causes have never altruist and encompassing but ludicrous and self-centred. It is no surprise, therefore, that news of ISIS' female thugs partaking in the abuse of Yazidi girls and women and the abuse of women in Islamist circles goes decidedly under the radar as surely as Hollywood mouthpieces caught in the clumsy denial and deflection of a disgraced slab of lechery.

But I repeat myself ...

There is always someone who ruins things for others:

A new Winnipeg school’s decision to stop students from wearing their costumes to class on Halloween has upset some parents, who argue its not fair to deny their kids the fun.

Ecole Sage Creek School principal Marc Poirier says since this is the Kindergarten to Grade 8 school’s first year, staff debated what the costume policy would be.

He said teachers from schools where kids were allowed to dress up noted some kids wore scary or gory costumes that frightened younger children, or they carried props such as swords. Other costumes, he said, weren’t age-appropriate.

Poirier said some parents who didn’t support Halloween or trick-or-treating even kept their children home on Oct. 31 altogether.

“Although the schools did indicate guidelines for appropriate costumes, there were sometimes students who didn’t follow those guidelines,” Poirier explained.

“There was a discussion with those students about their costumes being inappropriate, and sometimes the students and the parents didn’t agree with the view of the school.”

Sage Creek administration decided, in consultation with a student committee, to have four different themed dress-up days during the week where Halloween falls. On Oct. 31, Poirier said it will be “tie and scarf” day.

Schools do set up appropriate attire rules and I suppose that includes Halloween costumes (even scary ones as that is the point of Halloween). Issue guidelines if one must and ensure that both parents and students understand them. Offending students (whose parents are clearly emotionally lazy) can be sent home to change costumes if they are really that bad. As for "tie and scarf" day, just ban Halloween rather than have some weak excuse for an event take its place.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

For a Thursday

Quite a bit of ground to cover ...

I don't understand why both Israel and the US won't just quit the UN entirely:

The United States announced Thursday it is pulling out of the U.N.'s educational, scientific and cultural agency because of what Washington sees as its anti-Israel bias and a need for "fundamental reform" in the agency.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel plans to follow suit.

The UN is not going to reform. It must be destroyed.

Also - this is an interesting development. Two groups that have been at each other's throats for ages are making peace. Israel must be huffing down their necks:

Rival groups Hamas and Fatah have reached a preliminary, partial agreement that could pave the way for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to resume governing the Gaza Strip, a decade after Hamas overran the territory, officials close to Egyptian-brokered negotiations said on Thursday.

Miffed at Boeing, the Trudeau government says it will buy fighter jets from Australia:

Canada has taken the first formal step toward buying used Australian FA-18 fighter jets, upping the ante in a trade dispute with U.S. defence giant Boeing.

Public Services and Procurement Canada quietly posted notice on its website over the holiday weekend that it has sent a formal letter expressing interest in the surplus warplanes.

The purchase, if it goes ahead, would mean there would be no need for the Liberal government to enter into a deal with the U.S. government to buy 18 advanced Super Hornet jets.

(Sidebar: " ... quietly posted ..."? Why not be man enough to say this Trump's face?)

One must remember that people voted for this sort of thoughtlessness and veiled bigotry:

“The National Holocaust Monument commemorates the millions of men, women and children murdered during the Holocaust and honours the survivors who persevered and were able to make their way to Canada after one of the darkest chapters in history. The monument recognizes the contribution these survivors have made to Canada and serves as a reminder that we must be vigilant in standing guard against hate, intolerance and discrimination.”

What drew international gasps was the fact that there was no explicit recognition of the uniquely Jewish aspect of the Holocaust. The plaque was hastily removed, to be revised, one assumes, to more appropriately reflect the proper historical significance of the Holocaust.

Still, some have asked, why is this so controversial? What’s the big deal? Didn’t many millions, not just Jews, perish during the Nazi years?

Why? Because the Holocaust was and remains singular. The Holocaust is a one-word shorthand specifically devised to refer to the Nazi obsession with murdering every last Jew on earth. This outcome — to make the world “judenfrei,” or “Jew-free,” was a core Nazi principle.

What should be pointed out was not the specificity of this particular plaque but that this was a repeated behaviour on the part of Trudeau whose open mouth constantly gathers feet:

The first time this happened was on Jan. 27, 2016, when, in issuing a statement commemorating Holocaust Remembrance Week, Trudeau failed to mention that six million Jews died in it.

Also - before one proceeds with this, it is important to remind one of this:

Trudeau, most members of his caucus and Green Party Leader Elizabeth May voted down a Conservative motion asking the House to declare ISIS guilty of genocide against Christians, Yazidis, Shia Muslims, women, and gays and lesbians.

And this:

"And to know that somewhere in the Prime Minister's Office staffers were poring through their personal files to try and see … which families would be suitable for a photo-op for the prime minister's re-election campaign. That's disgusting."

And this:

Michelle Rempel needs to get angry more often.

The 36-year-old former Conservative cabinet minister, now the Official Opposition critic for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, was the driving force behind Tuesday’s 313-0 House of Commons vote requiring Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government to get its act together and open Canada’s doors to the persecuted Yazidi minority of Iraqi Kurdistan.

Depraved ISIS thugs are little more than serial rapists who claim sex assault is a byproduct of implementing teachings of the Qur'an.

The grisly details are laid out in a new report by Nikita Malik called, “Trafficking Terror: How Modern Slavery and Sexual Violence Fund Terrorism.”

In it, a Yazidi survivor describes how ISIS henchman would line up young girls against walls before groping their chests.

“If they had breasts, they could be raped; if not, they would wait three months to check again,” Victim 1 said, according to an interview cited in the report.

The girls – many of them minors – were raped together in rooms as children looked on, she said after finally eluding ISIS’ grip.

Victim 1 also described how she was raped by six ISIS guards one night after attempting to flee.
“She was raped in every place possible," the report reads. "She was forced to do things that were disgusting to her and they kept her without clothes in this room so that anybody could come at any time and rape her.”

Yazidi women were told by brainwashed ISIS brides that they needed to be raped to become fully Muslim, according to the report.

They were often sold, but lost monetary value the more times they were purchased by men in Iraq and Syria.

The report also describes how sexual depravity continues to act as a pull factor for prospective terrorists

“Sexual slavery serves as an incentive for new recruits and foreign fighters, with the promise of wives and sex slaves.” writes Malik.

But people voted for this sort of over-taxation and fat government eating from one long bowl:

New data out from top pollster Ekos show Canadians are down on their own economic lot and feel their fortunes slipping.

Back in 2002, just over a fifth of Canadians considered themselves working-class. Yet now, based on answers given over Sept. 15-Oct. 1, that number sits at 37%.

Where has this growth come from?

A dropoff in the middle-class cohort. Almost 70% put themselves in that bracket 15 years ago, but now it’s plummeted to 43%.

Meanwhile, those who called themselves “poor” were previously in the single digits and now take up 13%.

The only constant? The upper class has stayed around 4% all of this time. Must be nice.


The Trudeau Liberals — led by a trust-fund prime minister who never had to worry about paying the rent, and by a finance minister who is even wealthier — have an ideological agenda based on the belief that borrowing billions for pet projects will make Canada’s economy blossom like a well-tended rose.

They have a belief that budgets will eventually balance themselves, and that no environmental argument exists to defend the use of fossil fuels — energy that heats our homes, keeps our lights on, fuels our cars, runs our industries, returns multi-billions in tax revenues and is decades away from any viable alternative.

They’re myopic to the point of blindness.

Their big spending habits now have them looking for money anywhere they can get it, and it is desperation akin to stealing candy from babies and checking under couch cushions for loose change.

At the same time, they have the gall to blame TransCanada for “making a business decision” to cancel the Energy East pipeline, but acknowledge no responsibility for suddenly saddling the company with stringent and expensive environmental regulations that apply to no foreign entity off-loading oil in our country.

So, TransCanada threw up its hands and said to hell with it.

And who could blame it?

If Patrick Brown wants to be a snake again, then he can lose again:

The leader of Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives, a largely unknown politician who polls suggest could be the province’s next premier, says social conservative issues will be off limits at his party’s much anticipated policy convention.

It is not simply that guns are tightly controlled by a government that ignores the illegal gun trade. It is that the powers that be can punish one if one defends life and property:

A murder charge was dropped Thursday against a Newfoundland man accused of killing a home invader last year.

Gilbert Budgell was charged with second-degree murder in the shooting of one of two masked men who entered his Botwood house in central Newfoundland in April 2016.

The man later died in hospital.

Crown prosecutor Karen O'Reilly says the case — which included a second charge of unlawful possession of a firearm — couldn't go ahead without satisfactory belief it could be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

"When it gets to the judge's stage, he has to be satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that it happened, so he needs almost near certainty," O'Reilly told reporters Thursday in Grand Falls-Windsor, N.L.

Defence lawyer Bob Buckingham said the home invaders arrived wearing masks, and Budgell acted out of fear.

Many distinct groups were found to have occupied what is now Newfoundland and Labrador:

About 5,000 years ago, after massive ice sheets from the Last Glacial Maximum retreated, the Maritime Archaic peoples carved a living from the sea and woodlands on Newfoundland's west coast.

It's not clear where they came from or how they got there. But they left behind polished slate spears, stone axes and the remains of ancient fireplaces in rows along the beach that hint at how they hunted seals and wild game.

At Port au Choix, north of today's Gros Morne National Park, archeologists in 1968 recovered hundreds of artifacts. There were carved pendants resembling birds, shell beads, decorative stones, quartz and amethyst crystals suggesting spiritual rites of a well established culture.

This southern branch of the Maritime Archaic mysteriously vanish from the archeological record some 3,000 years ago.

Still, it was widely speculated they were related to the later Beothuks who thrived in Newfoundland for hundreds of years before Europeans arrived. They were gradually cut off from crucial fishing and hunting grounds before the last known Beothuk died of tuberculosis in 1829.

New genetic research published Thursday suggests the Maritime Archaic were in fact distinct from the Beothuk.

"This in turn implies that the island of Newfoundland was populated multiple times by distinct groups," says molecular anthropologist Ana Duggan, co-author of the study published in the journal "Current Biology."
If they are either extinct, intermarried or have moved off, whatever made them do so before the advent of massive European colonisation?

Perhaps if one took money from injection sites?

Jolly Old Saint Nick may have one less appearance on his itinerary this holiday season if the non-profit society that runs the annual Vancouver Santa Claus parade doesn't find some cash soon.

The annual event is short a sponsor after Rogers gave notice, more than a year ago, that it would no longer contribute the $150,000 for the spot of title sponsor.

"We're grateful for Roger's support over the years. They've been a tremendous partner for the parade and they've just changed their focus as corporations do over time," said Jessica Walker, president of the Santa Claus Parade Society.

Walker says it's been a struggle to to find a replacement sponsor. "We've just had a hard time filling [Roger's] shoes," she said.

The society spends $400,000 to put on the event with a large chunk of that going to pay for permitting and city fees, building floats, policing and traffic control and closures.

"We have over 300,000 people come down, so we have a lot of safety and traffic control protocols in place," said Walker.

The City of Vancouver has offered to contribute about one-third of the parade costs in kind, according to Walker.

The Greater Vancouver Food Bank is hoping someone will step up to save the event as it counts on donations at the parade to get through the year.

CEO Aart Schuurman Hess says over the years the parade has helped bring in $157,000 and 77,000 pounds of food. 

"We're $150,000 short and I'm pretty sure there's someone out there who says I'm going save Santa Claus," said Schuurman Hess.

The parade society has given itself two weeks to find a new sponsor or the parade will be cancelled.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Mid-Week Mellow

"The Hall of the Mountain King" in musical notation form:

How multicultural virtue-signalling can be embarrassing:

If you fly into the Toronto Pearson International Airport via Terminal One, you’re welcomed into the city by three human-like figures, made out of stones placed on top of stones. One has its arms straight out, one has them raised, and one is making them into a sort of “L” shape.

To some travelers, the sculptures may resemble a trio of aircraft marshallers* (or, as someone said on Facebook, a few friends trying to hail a cab). But to those in the know, they’re bearing a much more dire—and almost certainly unintended—message. These are inunnguat, traditional Inuit artworks that encode particular messages. And an inunnguaq with its arms raised up means, essentially, “Stay away! This is a place of violent death.”
I guess it pays to do some research first, huh?

Your cute little animal interlude:

Halloween traditions from around the world:

From the end of September to the middle of October, Buddhist families gather together to celebrate Pchum Ben, a religious holiday to celebrate the dead. People give foods like sweet sticky rice and beans wrapped in banana leaves, and visit temples to offer up baskets of flowers as a way to pay respect to their deceased ancestors. It’s also a time for people to celebrate the elderly.

Mid-Week Post

Your go-to spot for the work-week ...

Well, at least one PM is thinking about post-NAFTA Canada because Mr. Socks sure isn't:

Stephen Harper says he believes Donald Trump is genuinely willing to pull the plug on the North American Free Trade Agreement.

The former prime minister is in Washington to discuss the fate of the ongoing trade negotiations, making rare public comments on a current political issue. ...

The former Conservative leader, who’s known as an ardent free trader, says powerful anti-trade forces that predate Trump’s presidency are at play in American society and aren’t going away anytime soon.

Harper says he understands the frustration: he described his annoyance at spending his 50th birthday signing a bailout package for General Motors Canada, only to see the auto giant move jobs out of the country.

He says he is advising companies to start planning for the possibility of a world without NAFTA.

Instead of figuring out why NAFTA bothers the US so, Trudeau instead threw Mexico under the bus. It seems to have bought him some time as now Trump is bandying about a tempting trade pact sans Mexico.

I wouldn't believe him. Trump seems adept at telling the gullible Trudeau what he wants to hear.

There are several reasons to scrap NAFTA, some of which may even be beneficial for Canada, but one simply cannot trust Trudeau to pull anything like that off. After all, Mr. "Budgets Balance Themselves" cannot even come up with a tax plan that doesn't sound like highway robbery. His deficit projections just get higher and higher. This is what happens when a trust-fund brat is offered the public purse. I'm sure a jet navigated by monkey could be maneuvered more successfully.


In the wake of predictions by Ontario’s independent, non-partisan Financial Accountability Office that Wynne’s plan will cost at least 50,000 jobs, the poll of 814 Toronto residents taken Sept. 16-19 found 61% oppose the policy, with only 39% in favour.

Of the 61% against the plan as proposed by Wynne, 44% want a longer phase-in period. Another 17% want the minimum wage hikes scrapped entirely.

That the numbers for something more sensible are lower makes me doubt the goodness of man.

How is Canada handling the potential powder keg that is North Korea? It isn't:

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson isn’t the only North American official talking to North Korea amid escalating nuclear threats. Canada is also trying to negotiate with the nation ruled by “Little Rocket Man,” as President Trump has nicknamed Kim Jong-un.

“North Korea we’re very concerned about. We’re a Pacific nation as well,” Chrystia Freeland, Canada’s Foreign Minister, said Tuesday at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women summit in Washington, D.C.

Freeland, who serves in the cabinet of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, said she and her colleagues “have been working closely with the United States with Secretary Tillerson” to neutralize risks posed by North Korea and its increasingly powerful missile arsenal.

(Sidebar: and what are those plans, Chrystia?)

Trudeau still thinks that this is his father's era and that the Americans wouldn't mind protecting the country.

How humiliating.

Why Canada needs a firing squad:

Alleged terrorist Rehab Dughmosh insisted during a court appearance Wednesday that she does not want a trial.

However, Justice Michael Dambrot bluntly told the 32-year-old Scarborough woman that despite her comments, she will be tried on several terrorism-related charges.

“Down with Canada,” said Dughmosh. “Add the charge of insulting the judiciary.”

How could this go wrong?

Yes, there is a new halfway house for federal parolees being built above the John Howard Society office up on Eglinton Ave. West.

Yes, it is adjacent to an elementary school.

What those behind the project say is it won’t be used to house sex offenders or convicted pedophiles.

“People with that background would not pass the assessment screening,” said Sonya Spencer, Toronto executive director of the John Howard Society (JHS). “We are very aware of the concerns of parents and the worries of the community, too.”

No sex offenders or people who have harmed children. But there will be a 10 bed unit at the 1669 Eglinton Ave. W. location for people on day parole from their federal penitentiary sentences.

“We hope to have it up and running this fall,” said Spencer.

The fact that Obama has never been impeached over this still bothers me:

A CIA witness testified Tuesday that the body of U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens was returned after the September 2012 attacks on U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, only after he overheard Libyan militia members discussing whether to tell Americans about a dead compatriot at a hospital.

Speaking of failures one can directly attribute to the former Liar-in-Chief:

This isn't a "market correction." It's a government catastrophe. Premiums for individual health plans in Virginia are set to skyrocket nearly 60 percent in 2018. In New Hampshire, those rates will rise 52 percent. In South Carolina, individual market consumers will face an average 31.3 percent hike. In Tennessee, they'll see rates jump between 20-40 percent.

Private, flexible PPOs for self-sufficient, self-employed people are vanishing by design. The social-engineered future -- healthy, full-paying consumers being herded into government-run Obamacare exchanges and severely regulated regional HMOs -- is a bipartisan big government health bureaucracy's dream come true.

And as with Benghazi, Obama is nowhere to be found to explain this ongoing debacle.

A custodian at a hotel where a gunman killed fifty-nine people warned staff about the man before the massacre started:

A maintenance worker said Wednesday he told hotel dispatchers to call police and report a gunman had opened fire with a rifle inside Mandalay Bay before the shooter began firing from his high-rise suite into a crowd at a nearby musical performance.

Listening to people distance themselves from an open secret is watching the rot from Hollywood spread:

We have seen the video of Meryl Streep calling Weinstein “God” at the 2012 Golden Globe awards, and specifying that Weinstein’s particular deity was “the punisher.” Nice touch. Quite a contrast to the 2017 Golden Globes, when Streep lit into Donald Trump for mocking a reporter’s disability. Perhaps Weinstein did not mock the disabled.

Streep has since denounced Weinstein and protested that she was shocked, shocked, to find out that there was gambling going on in Casablanca. ...

A more remarkable intervention came from Tina Brown, for a time in the 1990s the undisputed queen of celebrity journalists, running Vanity Fair and The New Yorker consecutively. She was lured away from the latter by Harvey Weinstein to run his media business.

“When I founded Talk magazine in 1998 with Miramax, the movie company Harvey founded with his brother Bob, I also took over the running of their fledgling book company,” Brown wrote this week. 

“Strange contracts pre-dating us would suddenly surface, book deals with no deadline attached authored by attractive or nearly famous women, one I recall was by the stewardess on a private plane. It was startling — and professionally mortifying — to discover how many hacks writing gossip columns or entertainment coverage were on the Miramax payroll with a ‘consultancy’ or a ‘development deal’ (one even at The New York Times).”

So Brown, perhaps one of the most powerful women in journalism, had the goods on Weinstein. She saw the payoffs. But she quietly kept cashing her cheques from Miramax and attending Weinstein’s swanky parties.

China does not care why South Korea has the THAAD system. It cares that South Korea does have it:

At a ceremony at the South Korean Embassy, Roh said he will explain to Beijing officials that Seoul's THAAD deployment is purely for defensive purposes against North Korea's nuclear and missile threats and is not aimed at China. 
Consider that China was implementing punitive economic measures like trade sanctions because South Korea will not remove the THAAD system. Even without it, China would still squash the South Korean economy (China is more than willing to be South Korea's money-lender). It seems that it is not enough that South Korea surrenders its lines of defense (as Trudeau is more than willing to do for Canada) but that its economy is brought to heel, as well. A weakened state poses no opposition for a hungry paper dragon.