Liberal Industry Critic Geoff Regan made the following statement today on the Copyright Modernization Act:
Just remember, here are 10 MORE reasons to connect CETA to the new “Crime Bill” and the SPP and the NAFTA “Super Bridge” project and the Libya Mission and the “secret” deals with China. If someone can figure out how to tie this all together considering the suspicious radical religious undertones to the current “ConTeaBagger” govt., bingo…
10 Reasons Why CETA is Bad for Canada
Video By: NAURESISTANCE.org Graphics By: TradeJustice.ca Music By: Min-Y-Llan “Hey Canada, heard of the CETA yet? No? It’s not surprising! Once again, our fe…
I wanted to remind you that the deadline to submit your feedback on possible convention topics and sessions on key policy, organizational and rebuilding issues is 12 pm EST, Friday, September 30.
Last night, in the final two minutes of debate of the omnibus crime bill, I managed to get in the last word:
Ms. Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands, GP):
Mr. Speaker, the clock is ticking and this debate is closing far too soon for those of us who believe that we are on the verge of a very large, serious mistake that future parliamentarians will have to struggle to correct.
First, let me say to the hon. government benches and the members here where we agree. I would happily vote for the Victims of Terrorism Act. I would vote to change the Criminal Records Act to replace the word “pardon” with “record suspension”.
However, I will be forced to vote against this legislation if it comes packaged with sections that would cause this country nothing but grief.
I wish to say to all hon. members on the government side whose talking points have repeatedly forced them to say that those who question the flawed premise of mandatory minimum sentences have somehow sided with criminals against victims. Nothing could be further from the truth. Members of my family are involved in law enforcement. People close to me have been murdered.
It is not as though we side with criminals when we recognize a piece of legislation is so egregiously flawed that this place should say “no.” We look at all the evidence from criminologists, not just one or two, but all of them. We look at evidence from our own Department of Justice that studied this matter in 2002. We look at what is happening in the U.S., not only at the fact that its prisons are full of people but its prisons are full of people disproportionately low-income and black.
We also look at what could happen in this country. We have seen the report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples and the report on the Commission on Systemic Racism in the Ontario Criminal Justice System. We know that with this legislation, without a lot of changes in our system, we would disproportionately fill our jails with people who should not be in jail.
We also know that this legislation would cost us billions, which has not been fully costed. Yet, at the end of the day, it may actually result in weaker sentences for those who deserve higher sentences because we would ruin the opportunity for judicial discretion.
Thank you Mr. Speaker.
Before the clock strikes midnight this Friday, you have a decision to make.
“We can’t expect to be on a completely different track than the rest of the world,”
“If the global economy slows, the Canadian economy is going to slow.”
“The big challenge for us is our export market,”
“That’s where the global recession affected us, that’s where the global slowdown is affecting us again.”
“We know what the problem is right now. There are literally trillions of dollars sitting on the sidelines throughout the western world and we’ve got to find ways, you know, in other economies to restore confidence and get that money back into the economy.”
“So we don’t have a sovereign debt issue. We have obviously a deficit under these economic circumstances but nothing that’s structural or protracted.”
“We have a full range of economic assets that has, you know, allowed us to have some good response in certain export markets,”
“But, look, you know, I’m not trying to fool you. With all the assets we have and all the things we’ve done right, we are nevertheless a small open tr…
Export-reliant economy makes Canada vulnerable to global downturn: Stephen Harper
The Canadian economy’s export-driven base is “very vulnerable” to the global economic slowdown, says Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
“Even before they received a majority in the House, the Conservatives made it clear that evidence of the declining crime rate, the proven failure of tough-on-crime strategies elsewhere, and the cost of such measures crippling some American states were all irrelevant factors. No amount of logic, expertise, or debate would deter the government from its chosen path.”
Blind ideology harms Canada
One should not be surprised that Government House Leader Peter Van Loan on Tuesday slapped a two-day time restriction on the debate over the 102-page omnibus crime bill being rammed through Parliament.
F***book wants more friends. And it’s willing to pay for them.
The Silicon Valley social media company has for the first time formed an old-fashioned political action committee and will use it to distribute cash to candidates in the coming elections. It is just one indication of how social media companies are integrating with the political landscape in a season in which these businesses are growing presences in the campaign conversation.
Facebook Forms a PAC
In forming a political action committee, Facebook is joining other social media companies in efforts to integrate with the political landscape.
Woman can’t reunite with
son after five years; 97-year-old woman told her case may take another 47
by Elizabeth May
Embassy Magazine, September 27, 2011
People often ask me if I have
encountered any big surprises since starting as a member of Parliament in May.
Of course, I knew that an MP’s job is
hard work and much of it focused on assisting people who need help in the
riding. And I knew that the bulk of those issues would relate to immigration
What I had not been expecting was the
callous, Kafkaesque nature of recent immigration decisions. Here are a few
examples (names and nationalities removed to respect privacy):
A young pregnant woman applied to come
to Canada, sponsored by other relatives from her country of origin. At the
time, she was told she could not apply for an unborn child. When the child was
three, her immigration approval came through, but then she was told she had not
applied for the child so she could not bring him.
She headed to Canada, leaving the boy
with relatives, under the belief that she could sponsor her child once she
established residency. Two years later, immigration officials have rejected the
application to allow her five-year-old son to join her, and have written him:
“Dear Mr. XX…. You do not fit any acceptable classification of sponsored
person”—as if he could read. Maybe it is just as well he cannot.
A Canadian citizen has had her
97-year-old mother living with her from the UK while her mother applies for
permanent residency, which has been in process since 2008. The mother has no
living relatives in the UK, and the family spends enormous sums for health care
insurance. The most recent letter from Citizenship and Immigration Canada has
told her the process to determine whether her 97-year-old mother can stay will
take another 47 months.
A refugee from political strife who, at
the tender age of six, had seen his entire family slaughtered in his country of
origin has applied to come to Canada. He is being sponsored by a Canadian
citizen, another refugee from the same turmoil, whose family adopted the
younger boy in the refugee camp. The sponsor, his older brother, started the
sponsorship process seven years ago. Citizenship and Immigration Canada has
told the younger brother, now in his 20s, that his country of origin is fine
and he should go back.
I could go on and on. The individual
heartbreaks should be no surprise. In the five years in which Stephen Harper
has been prime minister, the time to process visa applications for sponsored
parents and grandparents has increased (depending on the visa post, from nine
months to 30), while the number of visas issued annually to parents and
grandparents has plummeted from 20,005 in 2006, to 11,200 in 2011.
In the House in June, Bob Rae, Liberal
Party interim leader, read the text of an email from an immigration official to
a Liberal caucus member to the effect that they were under political orders
that family reunification was not a priority. Should instructions change, the
email concluded, the process would be improved.
Human smuggling bill
Reflecting the government’s willingness
to treat all refugee claimants as potential terrorists, is Bill C-4, the
so-called human smuggling bill. It should more accurately be called the Refugee
This bill panders to xenophobia
prompted by the sight of boatloads of refugee claimants on our shores.
Strangely, this bill, marketed as a way
to prevent the unscrupulous from preying on the desperate, will target people
arriving by boat for special treatment. It will eventually be struck down by
the Supreme Court of Canada as offensive to the Charter.
Those refugee applicants deemed to have
made an “irregular arrival” (primarily by ship, but not exclusively),
will be placed under mandatory arrest and detention for one year.
This applies to men, women and children
who arrive by boat. Most refugee claimants in Canada arrive at our airports.
When I asked Immigration Minister Jason
Kenney about this discrepancy, he told me he can designate entry anywhere to
meet the terms of this act.
I pointed out to him that it was wrong
to talk about refugees “jumping the queue,” as political refugees, by
definition, are not able, due to fear of persecution or death, to stay in their
country of origin to apply to leave.
Mr. Kenney says the queue means going
to a UN refugee camp and waiting there.
Of course, the UN High Commissioner for
Refugees depends on voluntary funding and the agency’s resources are over-stretched.
The UN refugee camps are not set up around the world as waiting rooms for Canada.
They are typically established near the borders of areas of natural or
climate-crisis disasters, or regions of armed conflict. Those fearing political
persecution are far less likely to have any access to a UNHCR refugee camp.
The Conservative claim is clever
messaging, but sophistry.
I want to close with a note of
gratitude and a tribute to former Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj. When a family
in his riding was wrongfully deported, he dug into his own pocket, retained a
lawyer and helped the family of Arjan Tabaj return to the safe haven of Canada
Let us hope the Federal Court ruling in
the Tabaj case will give the government pause. Perhaps the Harper government
can step back from the punitive approach, withdraw Bill C-4 and discuss with
Canadians how we want potential new Canadians to be treated.
Canada’s policy toward immigration and
refugees has changed dramatically while the Conservatives had a minority
government. We need to discuss these issues and protect human rights now that
Mr. Harper has his majority.
Liberal Leader Bob Rae made the following statement today for Rosh Hashanah.
The Vegan Environmental Party of Ontario is newly formed and has three candidates running in this election:
Mississauga South – Paul Figueiras
Don Valley West – Rosemary Waigh
Toronto Centre – Harvey Rotenberg
You can visit the Party’s facebook page via the link below:
Liberal Leader Bob Rae made the following statement today on the occasion of Assembly of First Nations National Chief Shawn A-in-chut Atleo’s address to the Liberal Caucus, which launched several days of meetings between First Nations leaders and Members of Parliament.
September 26, 2011 – More than 200 people risked arrest on Parliament Hill in the largest climate-related civil disobedience action in Canadian history. The rally and the civil disobedience remained peaceful through the day-long event on the Hill. The main message of the action was to urge Prime Minister Harper to turn away from a destructive tar sands industry and start building a green energy future that promotes climate justice, respects Indigenous rights and prioritizes the health of the environment and communities.
September 26, 2011 – More than 200 people risked arrest on Parliament Hill in the largest climate-related civil disobedience action in Canadian history.
There appears to be some confusion in a recent Ottawa Citizen Blog. I’ve said nice things about Bob Chiarelli in the past as Mayor and about my work with him at FCM. I stand by those statements, I’ve known Bob for a long time. But I’ve not endorsed Bob or made statements about him during this election campaign. I have said that Randall Denley does not believe in the climate change and is against the things we need to do to fight one of the most serious challenges we face. In this election Alex Hill is the Green Candidate in Ottawa West-Nepean. He is working hard in his bid for the seat and obviously he has my support.