Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Conflict in Ukraine

I have no less than 40 emails from the Office of the Prime Minister addressing the matter of the conflict in the Ukraine by apparent Russian backed rebels.  The Prime Minister and Minister John Baird are the primary spokespersons on behalf of Canada.  It began with Crimea and has escalated to the horrific downing of a commercial aircraft.

Over the last 5 months our government has only announced another round of expanded sanctions and sent some fighter jets to the region in anticipation of a supposed expansion of the conflict to those countries surrounding and near Ukraine.  What evidence is there the sanctions are having any effect and what measurable effect have out fighter jets had in the region?

Canada sent 6 jets around the middle of April and Canada has sent about 75 military personnel to join an international alliance.  Our military will join the American core of support.  I don’t know who will command our jets.

My point is that the Office of the Prime Minister on behalf of Canada has achieved little to resolve the issue in Ukraine, but it sounds good for Ukrainians around the world and we are cooperating with the similarly weak efforts of our international allies.

Putin needs a good slap by completely isolating him from the rest of the world until the people of Russia realize his personal power trip is at the complete expense of all the people of the Russian Federation.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Jason Kenney - Doing it Right

It has long been argued that governments are never defeated, but rather defeat themselves.  The Harper Government is moving forward with reckless abandon to position themselves for that inevitability.

There are 100 good reasons for Canadian voters not to support the Harper Government at the next election.  It takes a 100 reasons to get elected and only one reason to get defeated.  The dictatorial Harper Government may be well positioned to be defeated at the next election.

They may have only one savior and I believe that is Jason Kenney.  Minister Kenney is a problem solver who consults with all stakeholders before making a decision.  He is then fearless when it comes to respectfully defending his decision openly with the media and Canadian voters.

If Prime Minister Stephen Harper were to be replaced by Jason Kenney the conservative’s inevitable destiny of defeat may not be immediate.

Monday, June 16, 2014

The Heavy Hand of Party Brass

A recent poll indicated Canadian voters are opposed to Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau's conditions for his candidates to be pro choice. The poll was 70% against Justin and 30% in favour regarding this matter. I understand the question was “Does Justin Trudeau have the right to impose this condition?”

Regardless of how you feel about the issue the Liberal Leader has the right to impose this condition. Many will recall that former Premier Grant Devine was denied the right to run for the nomination as a federal Conservative candidate by the Harper conservatives. He ended up running as an independent and lost. Many will also recall Grant Schmidt, a former cabinet minister in the Grant Devine Government, ran and won the nomination against a sitting SaskParty MLA. The Brad Wall SaskParty overturned the democratic process and denied Grant Schmidt as a democratically nominated candidate in favour of Bob Bejornerud, who went on to reclaim his constituency at the next provincial election.

It is apparent the leadership of political parties have the right to do whatever suits them when it comes to selecting whom they want to run for them in any upcoming election. The people in local constituency associations should decide whom they want representing them free of conditions imposed by the heavy hand of party brass.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Federal Conservatives Escape Again

The Elections Commissioner has halted any further probe into the 2011 federal election robocalls. Canada's elections investigator claims there is insufficient evidence regarding fraudulent robocalls during the 2011 election to warrant charges by the federal public prosecutor.

The long-awaited report from commissioner of elections Yves Cote indicated difficulties investigators faced in gathering evidence in ridings other than Guelph, Ontario, where a single junior Conservative staffer is facing charges.

This entire matter will now not be referred to the federal director of public prosecutions. Cote's decision in this matter is apparently supported by an independent review by a former Supreme Court justice.

So where is the justice when a political party is alleged to have breached election guidelines and there is no process to investigate with the authority necessary to lay charges and make them stick in a court of law?  There is apparently no process in place to compel potential witnesses and parties to fully cooperate with investigators.

The Harper Government is currently in the process of changing election rules in a new and highly controversial Fair Elections Act.  It is apparent the Harper conservatives want to have control over the next federal election.

Cote says Elections Canada needs the power to compel testimony.  This is something the Harper Conservatives have conveniently left out of their controversial new elections overhaul despite calls last year for increased investigative powers.

It is apparent Canada has problems within their own system of government and elections. Recent Senate scandals and election investigations are the proof.  And there is far more to the Harper Government's Fair Elections Act than simply proof of identification before casting a vote in a federal election.

Yesterday the Harper Government announced it is committing to support Ukraine during this important period of transition.  To this end, on April 23, 2014, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced $11 million in support that could see up to 500 observers travel to Ukraine to monitor the upcoming presidential elections.  This support would be targeted towards three new initiatives that will promote democracy in Ukraine in the lead up to the country's presidential elections taking place on May 25, 2014.  How ironic is that?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Senate Scandal

We learned today the RCMP have dropped the charges against the Prime Minister's former Chief of Staff Nigel Wright for writing a $90,000 cheque to suspended Senator Mike Duffy. The RCMP concluded the evidence they gathered was insufficient to support criminal charges against Mr. Wright.

So one person alleged to be involved in the Conservative Senate scandal has been cleared. It will be interesting if the others named in the Senate scandal will be cleared as well. Was it all just a forgivable mistake? I am very interested in the final outcome and I suspect Canadians are too.