Wednesday, June 23, 2010


The news today of a 5.5 magnitude earthquake in the Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal area is a reminder that bad things can happen at any time and anywhere. Fortunately, there have been no reports of injury, but some windows at Ottawa’s City Hall were apparently shattered and people were evacuated from various buildings including employees on Parliament Hill. We in the west have always known that Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal are the epicenter of Canada. This earthquake seems to have proven that point, as the epicenter was only 61 kilometres north of Ottawa.

It proved one other thing and that is that Prime Minister Stephen Harper is not easily rocked. He said he did not feel the earthquake. One person joked that it was simply the result of Quebec separating from the rest of Canada. Interestingly, we had to wait for the United States to feed us exact data on the strength of the earthquake.

Again it was good to hear no one was injured. And as the politicians will say, “moving forward” will bring calmer days.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Right or Privilege

Should access to government information be a right enshrined in our nation’s constitution or should it only be a privilege that some politician or bureaucrat decides is not in their interest to share? I believe it should be a right, with few exceptions, and enshrine it in our constitution.

Getting a politician or some departmental bureaucrat to answer a question is near impossible. Since March of 2010 I have been attempting to get some questions answered regarding the Guaranteed Income Supplement. The Prime Minister and members of his cabinet have refused to answer my questions. A Saskatchewan Senator has refused to fully get involved. Various bureaucrats have refused to answer my questions. The evidence I have on file strongly suggests that the Parliament of Canada has failed to fully address the issue of impoverished seniors having been denied their rightful claim to retroactive GIS benefits. This situation resulted from the government’s failure to responsibly advise them of their right to the GIS benefit. This issue was front-page news in 2002 and then conveniently swept under the table and no one to date is prepared to even discuss the issue. How can this be?

The government and parliament should be challenged on this issue. Is there a politician who can think past their pay cheque?