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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Latest news from the Nortel show trial

So here's the deal: three former Nortel executives are on trial for fraud for allegedly engineering results that would give the company profits, triggering bonuses for them

But here are the problems the charges put forward by an RCMP White Collar Crimes unit that that has managed to get only one major conviction (the obviously guilty Garth Drabinsky) in the unit's history, and the theories of a prosecution that makes Inspector Clouseau look like Sherlock Holmes.

The three executives were way down the list of people who would get bonuses for the profitable periods. The three of them combined received less than ten percent of some individual former Nortel executives and Board members over the same period.

The Nortel Board and auditing firm Deloitte, which was paid about $10 million a year for auditing Nortel's books, all approved of the transactions that the executives on trial are accused of having made fraudulently. By definition, you can't do something transparently and with auditors' approval and commit fraud.

If indeed these transactions were fraudulent, then one of the unanswered mysteries of the Nortel Show Trial is the question of why the Board and Auditors who approved the transactions aren't also on facing the same fraud charges.

The answer seems obvious. The spectacular collapse of Nortel last decade had a devastating affect of the Toronto Stock Exchange and thousands of investors, many who lost fortunes while large investors like some of the Public Service Unions were able to force Nortel to pay them money at the expense of private individual investors.

The mob was screaming for blood, and so scapegoats were needed. The Board are part of the Bay Street old boy network, too well conected to go after. The sacrifice to the mob therefore came in the persons of Former CEO Frank Dunn, CFO Douglas Beatty and Controller Michael Gollogly.

In today's Ottawa Citizen, James Bagnall explains more of the illogical arguments and inconsistencies put forward by the prosecution:

The Crown has alleged this activity was directed by Nortel’s top three financial executives — Frank Dunn, Douglas Beatty and Michael Gollogly — in order to smooth out Nortel’s progression to steady, maintainable profits. Crown prosecutor Robert Hubbard added that Nortel management in January was expecting a loss in the first quarter of 2003.

He also maintains that management engineered earnings in order to trigger executive and other bonuses.

Nevertheless, to transform a fourth-quarter profit into a loss seems not only counter-intuitive, but contrary to the incentives in place for management. Indeed, the financial motivation for Nortel’s executives would have been to direct Harrison NOT to solicit new entries that created the quarterly loss.

UPDATE (Feb 1): Today The Ottawa Citizen's report discusses how the Crown's first witness actually helped make the defence's case. It also elaborates on how the Crown doesn't seem to understand the issues that it is prosecuting.

The good news is you don't have to be so afraid of being eaten by an alligtor in the Florida Everglades

The bad news is that's because they are being eaten by giant Burmese Pythons that have invaded the area.

Now it's python season!

Shiver me timbers! Strange sea finds in the Baltic

h/t Sally and Sam

Sunday, January 29, 2012

If you like paying taxes, you'll love Canada's misnamed New Democratic Party

Not new, with guaranteed votes going to unions, it's not very democratic, and anyone who knows these stiffs knows they have a pretty sad idea of how to party.

Now they're ganging up on Tom Mulcair, because he's not looney enough for Canada's neo-Marxist halfwits.

And now for some classic Bowie..

Friday, January 27, 2012

Glen Campbell sings Wichita Lineman

A fantastic song:

Bonus - Campbell playing Classical Gas

Huntingdon Mayor Stephane Gendron's attacks on Israel could be an act of worship

Huntingdon Mayor Stephane Gendron, the co-host of Quebec's V-Tele network's  "Face-a-Face" has, on many occasions, made imbecilic, hateful comments about the Jewish state. He accused Israel of "genocide" suggesting he doesn't actually understand the meanming of that word. At least stupidity is a constant for Mr. Gendron. He also accused Quebec Premier Jean Charest of being a "murderer,"  and a public letter he posted on his blog to Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper suggests Gendron may actually be mentally unhinged.

But perhaps the fanatical hostility Gendron exhibits towards Israel is not based so much on hatred of Jews as it is an act of service to one that he loves and admires.

The Bible describes the children of Abraham, Isaac and Joseph as God's chosen people; selected by The Almighty to receive His law. The Bible also contains references to an opponent, Satan, whose purpose is to lead man on the path away from God.
If Satan and Lenin had a baby, would it look like this?

So is it any wonder that a person who is an admirer of Satan would be an enemy of God's chosen?
Posted to Gendron's facebook page

On his facebook profile, Gendron has posted a number of photographs sugesting he has a tremndous affinity, not only for Israel's temporal enemies but also their spiritual commandant, The Prince of Darkness.

This mockery of Christian belief was uploaded to Gendron's facebook profile

Le car du Mayor w/ personalized license plate
His taste in photographs indicate an obsession with The Number of The Beast, "666."  Balding and sporting a devilish goatee that makes him look like the sickly love child of Vladimir Lenin and Old Nick himself, Gendron has adorned both his car and his ring finger with Satanic emblems and has a number of photographs that insult Christianity and pay tribute to the legendary source of all evil.

Jew hatred seems to be a common act of devotion by those subservient to The Evil One. Hitler's Nazis shared Gendron's obsession with crackpot occultism and symbolism. Hitler also shared Gendron's apparent contempt for Christianity, thinking it was a Jewish plot to conquer the world.

Gendron's wearing his pentagram on the wrong finger
Who knows what actual demons possess Stephane Gendron. But whoever they are, the citizens of Huntingdon better hope he doesn't figure out which ritual he needs to perform to conjure them out of Hell.

h/t Blazing Cat Fur

Graham Yost applied storytelling tips from his late father, Elwy

“Everything that I do in my work is an homage to my dad,” Yost said quietly. “He always impressed on me the value of taking an idea and turning it on its head and finding something different. My dad was obsessed by that. His favourite moments in movies were moments that were surprising, and yet felt incredibly satisfying. Or incredibly heartbreaking. So, for both my brother and I, whenever we see movies, we see them through the lenses that our father gave us.”

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Food Stamp President becomes the Class Warfare President

With what may be President Obama's final State of the Union address , he has outlined the divisions that will define the philosophical conflict in the 2012 election. The conflict to be played out will be the battle between American exceptionalism and European-style class resentment.

You can call this class warfare all you want. But asking a billionaire to pay at least as much as his secretary in taxes? Most Americans would call that common sense.”

Obama didn't actually distinguish what kind of taxes he was talking about during his attempt at divisive populism during his State of the Union speech tonight. The reason those billionaires are paying less in taxes is because they tend to make more income from Capital Gains taxes. That's tax on profits from investments bought with money they have already paid taxes on. Like when you get taxed on interest in your bank account.

What does raising the tax rate on investment income usually accomplish? Lower investment rates. Investments are what create jobs and drive industry. If Obama had ever held a real job in his life, he might understand that better. But seemingly motivated by the defunct, vapid Occupy movement's call to class warfare and vilifying the "1%", the Food Stamp President, who is in danger of losing the 2012 election, has leaped upon the opportunity to exploit class resentment.

A disciple of radical activist Saul Alinsky, Mr. Obama may not have a tremendous understanding of the American spirit, which is something very different than the attitudes in the socialist Europe he admires and wants to emulate.

That weakness has laid bare the Republican strategy, to play upon optimism and the American dream and use it against Mr.  Obama's 21st Century version of Jimmy Carter's National Malaise.

The man who came to Washington promising "change" is now likely to be remembered as "The Great Divider," being responsible for more political polarization than a predecessor who was relentlessly accused of that fault.

Obama's State of the Union shows a President who thinks he leads a nation as pessimistic as he is. That betrays a fundamental misunderstanding of the American character and one that will likely cost him more votes than the Deocrats' war chest can buy between now and November.

Update: I think I know where Obama's getting his stupid economic ideas

Herman Cain's response to the State of the Union address was rather good:

The rest of Cain's response is at The Other McCain

Canadian blogger threatened with death amid allegations of corruption at the York Regional Police Dept.

Popular Canadian conservative blogger Blazing Cat Fur has received a death threat from a someon purporting to be a young woman who only last year was before the courts on charges of being an accessory to murder.

Those charges against that woman were eventually dropped  under mysterious circumstances.

What makes the story particularly strange is that the accused felon is linked to a notorious family in York Region.

The family includes Bahman Hafez Amini, who was recently indicted in Texas for money laundering. Most prominent among them are a brood of sisters who have been accused of making death threats via the Internet and for bragging about their connections with the York Regional Police Department.

The comments in Blazing Cat Fur's account of this most recent incident relate some shocking information. It is all the more unsettling in that there are a number of accounts of York Regional Police detectives and officials stonewalling any attempt to shed light on these matters.

More at Blazing Cat Fur

Monday, January 23, 2012

The new Ethical Oil - Take this, OPEC! Now we can turn seaweed into fuel!

Seaweed may well be an ideal plant to turn into biofuel. It grows in much of the two thirds of the planet that is underwater, so it wouldn't crowd out food crops the way corn for ethanol does. Because it draws its own nutrients and water from the sea, it requires no fertilizer or irrigation. Most importantly for would-be biofuel-makers, it contains no lignin—a strong strand of complex sugars that stiffens plant stalks and poses a big obstacle to turning land-based plants such as switchgrass into biofuel.

Researchers at Bio Architecture Lab, Inc., (BAL) and the University of Washington in Seattle have now taken the first step to exploit the natural advantages of seaweed. They have built a microbe capable of digesting it and converting it into ethanol or other fuels or chemicals.

Full article at Scientific American

A new plant is opening to convert seaweed to fuel

Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Republicans' Gordon Gekko unleashes the forces of fear against Newt

There's capitalism and there's capitalism. There's the good kind that creates jobs, produces valuable services and products, leads to technological advances, and creates choices and freedom for consumers and employees.

And then there's the Mitt Romney/Gordon Gecko/George Soros kind. That's the kind where creepy characters make a few calls, pull a few levers, buy and sell other people's achievements, then take a profit.

Mitt Romney's corporate raider capitalism is not the kind that built America, but it could be the kind that destroys it.  Romney's similarity to Oliver Stone's fictional character is eerie, even down to the slicked back hairstyle the two share. Romney is not a criminal, but neither is he inspiring.

So without much to motivate people to vote for him out of enthusiasm, he is trying to scare voters out of choosing Gingrich by unleashing a pack of media hounds like the flaky Ann Coulter, who now is a Romney booster.  Only a year ago, Coulter complained that if the Republicans pick her current candidate of choice, it would be the same as handing the 2012 election to Obama. But for her, Gingrich just isn't conservative enough. So she goes with Romney?

The Democrats must be enjoying the specticle of Republicans accumulting ammuniation for President Obama to use against them in the fall.

Cornell Law Professor William Jacobson writes on his blog Legal Insurrection that:

It’s really no surprise. As Mitt Romney has faltered from inevitability to modest favorite, a chorus of pro-Romney voices in the media and Republican Party is insisting that if Newt is the nominee, we not only lose the presidency we also lose the House and fail to take back the Senate.

It’s pure conjecture. If a bad week can cost Romney 20 points in South Carolina, it can cost him that much in Ohio, or Florida, or Virginia in the general election. Current polling is interesting, but overstated in its import.

Yet the argument is stated with absolute certainty.

The silliest, best thing ever: Star Wars Uncut - The Director's Cut

In 2009, Casey Pugh asked thousands of Internet users to remake "Star Wars: A New Hope" into a fan film, 15 seconds at a time... the crowd-sourced project has been stitched together and put online for your streaming pleasure. The "Director's Cut" is a feature-length film that contains hand-picked scenes from the entire StarWarsUncut.com collection.

h/t Ghost of a flea

He was crazy, but you have to admire his commitment to his word

From The Detroit Free Press in the 1920's:

Irony Alert: The country that threatened to wipe Israel off the map is very upset at aggressive language used against it

The slime ruling Iran are probably too stupid to appreciate the irony of their complaining about being threatened.

BONUS: Anti-Semitic Iranian propaganda organ Press TV, employer of stooges like George Galloway, Yvonne Ridley and Lauren Booth loses its license to broadcast in England.

The award for the worst case of a lobby group getting a stupid, self-serving law passed goes to...

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Chuck Norris endorsement pays off big - Gingrich wins South Carolina Primary

Never underestimate the power of Chuck Norris!

Well, maybe Newt's recent debate performances helped a little.

60 Days in the life of a Montreal Police Station circa 1973

Station 10 is a National Film Board documentary released in 1973  "drawn from 60 days and nights of on-the-spot filming in the early 1970s. It is a view of life in the inner city that usually only the policeman has reason to encounter. There are ugly incidents here, but there is also reassurance that people in trouble do have help at hand."                   

Watch the whole movie below:

That's it, with this news, I'm ready to call the 2012 election for Gingrich - Newt receives Chuck Norris' endorsement

"I’m tired of watching our country being torn to shreds by those who think the answer is more government debt and control. I’m tired of being in bondage to a tax system that robs U.S. citizens like the king of England did before the Revolution. I’m tired of watching our sovereignty being sold by foreign loans and loose borders. And I will not sit back and merely watch this decay and degradation of the U.S. and then hand it over to my children and grandchildren to deal with. 
That is why Gena and I have committed the rest of our lives to help Old Glory rise again to her heights of splendor. And that is why we are endorsing and standing with Newt Gingrich, because we believe he can lead all of us who have committed to the same. "

With the power of Chuck behind Newt, Romney's campaign is already in disarray!

CBC still not quite ready to retract libel against Rob Ford

The CBC is still not retracting its slander of Toronto's mayor based on "unnamed sources" despite a new verification from the OPP Commissioner that the last verification from Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair was accurate.

“I listened to all three tapes along with a superintendent,” Lewis said. “I took notes. The mayor appeared frustrated and upset on the calls.”

However, Lewis said he did not hear Ford use the word “bitches” and did not hear him say he was “Rob f---ing Ford.”

“I just called it like I saw it, as I always would and like Chief Blair did. The CBC’s portrayal of both Chief Blair and the comments of Mayor Ford were inaccurate and unfair,” Lewis said.

Ford had called 911 on Oct. 24 because he said he was worried for his family’s safety after This Hour Has 22 Minutes comedian Mary Walsh, dressed in warrior costume as the outlandish Marg Delahunty, caught him by surprise in his driveway early in the morning.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Using illusion to lure a mate..Birds do it..

Many male birds use their flashy colored feathers to lure females, but the great bowerbird of Australia has mastered the art of illusion to captivate the ladies, researchers said Thursday. (from Canada.com)

New research in Science this week shows that we aren’t the only species that uses visual clues as a means to an end: male bowerbirds’ mating success depends on their ability to create a false sense of perspective.

Male great bowerbirds (Ptilonorhynchus nuchalis) have a tough job. To woo females, they must construct an elaborate bower, centered around two parallel walls of sticks planted vertically in the ground. In front and behind the bower are two “courts,” connected by a path called an “avenue” between the two walls. The male builds the courts by collecting stones, bones, and shells, and arranging them on the ground. Called “gesso,” these objects cover the ground of the male’s court, where he displays colorful objects and shows off for potential mates. (from Ars Technica)

Wouldn't Pulp Fiction have been even cooler with this cast...?

Illustrator Peter Stults has created some wonderfully whimsical recreations of modern movies redone with alternate casts in old-style movie poster art.

His inspiration came from Sean Hartter's Alternate Universe Movie Posters.

h/t Alyson Court

Brain dead communists at Centre for Policy Alternatives-funded rabble.ca promoting physical attacks on capitalists

Unbelievable. Well, it would be for anyone unfamiliar with the depraved idiocy of the fanatical neo-Marxists on the fringes of the NDP and other Canadian so called "progressive" socialist organizations.

I'm all for women's self-defense, but you don't get to go around hitting people because they are capitalists. The morons at the site Judy Rebick founded want to train fanatics how to physically lash out in anger and aggression against capitalism. These people are emotionally and psychologically unbalanced to begin with. Training them to be violent is worse than stupid, it borders on being criminally irresponsible.

From the lunatic neo-Marxist website rabble.ca, published by the spouse of NDP Deputy Leader Libby Davies:

                             Our experiences of violence impacts our lives, and our activism. To
                             challenge patriarchy, colonialism and capitalism we need to be able
                             to defend ourselves and our communities. Join us for a physical
                             self-defense workshop and a discussion about gender norms and the
                             right to anger, to healthy aggression and to countering the pathologizing
                             of women who fight back.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Perry dropping from Republican race - will endorse Gingrich

Just when I had counted the Newtster out, he's back in..

Newt on the difference between lower class English (and it applies to Canadian socialists') attitudes and American ideals:

h/t Doug D.

Uinversity of Toronto and Royal Ontario Museum scientists discover ancient tulip creature

A bizarre creature that lived in the ocean more than 500-million years ago has emerged from the famous Middle Cambrian Burgess Shale in the Canadian Rockies.

More here

And for something really neat, check out the virtual undersea tour of the Burgess Shale as it would have appeared in prehistoric times here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Obama says he will not support SOPA Bill

The growing anti-SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) support that has swept through the gaming and Internet community found a very big ally today. With websites like Reddit and Wikipedia and gaming organizations like Major League Gaming prepared for a blackout on January 18th – the same day that the House Judiciary Committee hearing on HR 3261was scheduled in Washington, DC – President Barack Obama has stepped in and said he would not support the bill. SOPA has been killed, for now.

Full article at Forbes.com

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

And the old shall inherit the earth...

The Rand Corporation has produced a fascinating report detailing how increased life expectancy combined with declining populations in major countries will drastically alter the way the world looks in a few decades.

From Rand Corp.

Which probably means that Pfizer is going to be a great long-term investment.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Anti-G20 activist sentenced to jail for eating children after luring them to her gingerbread house

Well, not really. She just looks like the sort that would do that (Warning: Graphic Image)

G20 protest ringleader Amanda Hiscocks says she has no respect for the legal system, and her supporters demonstrated that in spades Friday, throwing a Toronto courthouse into chaos for nearly two hours before the accused was jailed for 16 months.

..Judge Budzinski, who repeatedly interjected during her address, suggested Ms. Hiscocks was hypocritical to denounce elitism while advocating a method of protest that violently invaded public space and silenced opposing views.  “The group itself [was] becoming an elite and taking over the city… Violence distracted from any legitimacy in the message,” he said of the G20 riots.

Here is Amanda Hiscocks' statement she prepared to be read at her sentencing.

She is a volunteer coordinator at the University of Guelph’s Ontario Public Interest Research Group. The various Canadian University so-called "Public Interest Research Groups" are bodies that students are, with the complicity of radical-dominated, professional paid student union leaders, forced to fund. The Public Interest Research Groups are hotbeds of fanaticism that celebrate violence and demonstrate little regard for democratic values.

Michael Coren: Canada is not Switzerland

So why is it some Canadians want to emasculate our military, pretend we are not who we are, and create this revised, foolish history of the country as a North American Switzerland, sitting out conflicts no matter how obvious the necessity of intervention?

It is not because they want peace and pacifism; it is because they want neutrality and, ultimately, the triumph of our enemies.

We saw this during the Cold War when, in the guise of peacefulness, various fellow travellers and leftist agitators actually wanted the Soviets to dominate.

Today we see something similar in the struggle against Islamofascism.

From special interest groups, to writers at the Toronto Star, to commentators on the CBC, we are drenched by waves of anti-American propaganda, explaining the war on terror is a costly failure, and we should be the honest broker in all this and not take sides.

If only we understood Islam, we are told by patronizing dullards, all would become clear.

Well, I do understand Islam, and the Middle East, and unlike these extremists I also understand the U.S.

It’s not about Canada taking sides, it’s about Canada being Canada.

The whole article is at The Sun

"Moderate" Palestinian leadership calls for genocide of Jews

PA Mufti calls for the killing of Jews quoting Islamic Hadith from Palestinian Media Watch on Vimeo.

h/t Blazing Cat Fur

Children's singer Raffi continues his crusade for the wussification of Canada's national sport

Raffi Cavoukian may be prepared to metaphorically pull down his pants, bend over and put a welcome sign on his posterior for the enemies of democracy and individual liberty. That seems clear from his support for the "Friends of Hamas" who launched the Sea Hitler Gaza boat that insulted the principles of this country by carrying a Canadian flag on its terror-enabling journey.

But what's really irritating is that he is on a crusade to wussify Canada's national sport and vilify Don Cherry. It seems that Cavoukian is just as perturbed by Cherry's vocal support for Canadian troops in Afghanistan as he is for the colorful, popular, bombastic commentator's recognition that fighting is a traditional part of Canadian professional hockey.

In a new article in the fanatical, neo-Marxist online media platform rabble.ca, Cavoukian betrays a distaste for Canadian traditions  while attempting to impose his own ideologies as those of the entire nation:
"..considering .. hockey analyst Don Cherry's repeated tributes to Canada's Afghan war dead within "Coach's Corner" on CBC's Hockey Night In Canada, I could examine the militarization of Cherry's segment and the loss of respect for Canada as a peacemaker in the world. But I won't. I will, however, question the role of violence in Canada's fall-winter-spring passion and what that says about this country. "
The cheap verbal shots Cavoukian takes at Cherry may suggest hid identification with the cheap shot artists who would benefit from a hockey fighting ban. Fighting is the deterrent that lets slimy players who like to jam the elbow, or give rib jabs with the end of their sticks when the ref isn't looking that they won't be allowed to get away with it.

In his opposition to deterrents to bad behaviour, at least Cavoukian is consistent. His support for the Sea Hitler terror-enablers demonstrates that he doesn't like anyone being able to protect themselves from slimy, vicious ,ongoing  low scale-attacks. Of course that's just a guess. Who knows what goes on in Cavoukian's mind?

Indeed, one of the things that is a frustration for the parents of young children is that the constant exposure to juvenile literature and music, be it Goodnight Moon, or Barney the Dinosaur, or Sesame |Street while stimulating for young children, is intellectually  numbing for adults. One of the great joys of seeing your children grow is watching their intellectual development  as their reading and musical tastes expand to more intricate ideas like those imagined by the likes of  C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien or the Beatles and Harry Nilsson.

Cavoukian, who I understand has no children of his own, has devoted his life to performing for kids, give or take a couple of years, of the age of five.  That obsessive focus could account for an intellectual stagnation that suggests he thinks Canadian history began with the election of Pierre Trudeau.

Here's Raffi serenading some rich, white, socialist hypocrites:

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Saturday, January 14, 2012

The Nortel Show Trial

The largest fraud trial in Canadian history is set to being on Monday. Nortel's collapse in 2003 cost billions to shareholders.  It had a major affect on pension funds and thousands of individual investors. Nortel's misfortune was one of the most sudden and extreme falls of an enormous corporation since the Great Depression. Billions were paid out in legal settlements and naturally everyone concerned looked around to find someone to blame.

During the dot com bubble of the early 2000's, Nortel's Board had approved billions of dolars worth of acquisitions of what turned out to be near worthless investments, and it fell to CEO Frank Dunn and CFO Douglas Beatty to try to turn that around. They instituted massive spending cuts that resulted in billions of savings and as far as financial markets were concerned, they were able to effect a miraculous resurrection at Nortel.

The Crown is alleging an extremely complex fraud on the part of Dunn, Beatty and controller Michael Gollogly to manipulate losses and earnings from one quarter to the next in order to meet the conditions for performance bonuses for the senior executives.

However there's no proof that ever happened.

Everything the trio of Dunn, Beatty and controller Michael Gollogly did was approved by the auditing firm Deloitte and fell withing the parameters of normal business practices and reporting. Just days before trial, amid the four million documents the crown has submitted as being relevant without identifying a single one that specifically shows fraud by the defendants, charges of falsifying documents were dropped. The fraud charges remain, but there is much speculation that this is simply a case of the government trying to look like it is doing something in the face of the anger and outrage from the public about a series of events which few people understand.

In today's National Post,

Friday, January 13, 2012

Mercedes-Benz uses mass murderer to sell cars

Mercedes-Benz's parent company Daimler AG, pissed off its Cuban-American buyers with an incredibly stupid marketing blunder at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show.

Dieter Zetsche, Chairman, was there to talk about a cool new Iphone car-pooling app called 'Cartogether', but as part of the presentation he stood in front of a huge poster of Che Guevara wearing his iconic beret not with the customary small star, but rather the Mercedes logo in its place...

Oh, I don't know what everyone's getting so worked up about. Mercedez could do a whole new campaign along the lines of:  Mercedes - a killer ride

All the cool mass murderers know the smoothest ride
from Jalopnik 

Terry Glavin on Oil Sands, the Pipeline and China's stealth control of Canada's oil

Our friend Terry Glavin has a very interesting take on the Oil Sands controversy and the largely unspoken aspect of the vast Chinese investment in Canada's natural resources:

.. if we’re seriously supposed to be going all villagers-with-torches about foreign outfits with weird ideologies undermining Canada’s national economic interests, let’s review what’s really going on, shall we?

The $5.5-billion Enbridge pipeline project is all about sending Alberta bitumen in huge oil tankers to China. Beijing’s own state enterprises are among the project’s major backers, and Beijing has been buying up Alberta’s oilpatch at such a dizzying pace lately it’s hard to keep up. In the spring of 2010, China’s state-owned Sinopec Corp. took a $4.65-billion piece of Syncrude. Then the China Investment Corporation, which is run by the Chinese Communist Party, took possession of a $1.25-billon share of Penn West Petroleum. Last summer, the Chinese National Offshore Oil Corporation gobbled up Opti Canada for $2.34 billion. And so on.

Then, last month, Sinopec spent $2.2-billion to take over Daylight Energy Ltd., and last week, Petro-China, with the final push of $1.9 billion, became the owner and manager of the MacKay River oilsands project. This is what Ottawa doesn’t want you noticing.

Full article at the National Post

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Human Rights Commissions push for "deeper equality" translates to the eradication of Canadian culture

"Women should be able to wear whatever they want and men should shut up about it" was  the line that got the most applause at the public consultation on Human Rights and the Law held by the Ontario Human Rights Commission and the University of Toronto on Wednesday evening. But the irony was that despite the feminist overtones of the statement, Winnifred Sullivan, the  Director of the Law, Religion, and Culture at the State University of New York seemed to be alluding to women's right to wear hijabs, niqabs and face veils during citizenship oaths -garments used to subjugate and de-sexualize women.

And this outspoken advocacy for cultural diversity rights by feminists seemed confined to the interests of immigrants in the west, since there is no commensurate movement by them to fight for the rights of women in Iran, Saudi Arabia, or Pakistan to wear mini skirts or appear in public without a hijab. This is essence is the direction that Human Rights Commissions in Canada are pushing towards, a cultural relativism they describe as "deeper equality" which would eradicate the last vestiges of the traditions that built the institutions and laws that gave birth to western tolerance and freedoms.

One of the night's speakers, David Seljak, Chair of the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Waterloo reminded the audience that Canada is a secular society with elements of the Christian traditions that the country was founded upon, such as a seven day work week and Christian public holidays like Christmas and Good Friday. The implied goal of a deeply equal society would be to eliminate such traditions so that newcomers who are altering Canadian demographics have a greater stake in society.

What was not discussed during the evening, moderated by Ontario Human Rights Commissioner Barbara Hall, were the failings of multiculturalism.The opposite was true. Professor Seljak barely concealed his disdain for the Canadian government's efforts to retain elements of the national culture by restricting alien garb in certain situations, such as niqabs in voting booths and criminal trials.

When westerners go to eastern countries with the expectation that the natives would allow and adapt to our cultural practices, it was usually proceeded by a military conquest and came in the form of imperialism and colonialism that the "progressives" in our society despise. Yet they are enthusiastic supporters of a reverse form of cultural imperialism that lets foreigners come to Canada and expect the majority culture to change to accommodate the minority.

There is a big difference between tolerance and restructuring. It doesn't harm Canadians or diminish Canadian traditions to allow a Muslim woman to wear a hijab or a Sikh to wear a Turban, or to let someone take a vacation day on their religious holiday. But advocates for the idea that no culture is superior to another are following through with its corollary; that our culture therefore is not special nor is it particularly worth preserving.

Millions of Canadians who remain oblivious to what Human Rights Commissions want to accomplish in this area would be deeply disturbed by the cultural suicide they want us to commit in the name of Deeper Equality. Another irony is that the people who are so willing to abandon to cultures that bear little resemblance to Canada's have been so anxious to protect it from infusions of American culture, from which ours is almost indistinguishable.

America was on the minds of a few people at Wednesday's consultation. Ali Mallah, a former Canadian Arab Federation, NDP and CUPE vice president and a fixture at anti-Israel protests who is a vocal supporter of terrorist groups like Hezbollah, was there, his unkempt appearance making him  look like a caricature of a union goon.  Speaking in a heavily accented, lisping voice, he got up to make a speech in which he pompously pontificated about  Canadians "occupying native land." Mallah was obviously more interested in the appearence of, rather than genuine, empathy for "occupied" Natives. Since unlike those of us who were born in Canada, Mallah traveled here as an adult from half way around the world to become a Canadian occupying native land, and to the best of my knowledge, hasn't given any back to them. He railed against the Islamophobia of "right-wing Christians" in the United States whom he compared to being "equal in hate to bin Laden." Mallah failed to note any right-wing Christians beheading apostates in America or strapping explosives to themselves to murder scores of heathen children, but those are mere details.

Rather than reaffirm Mallah's paranoia and hyperbole about Islamophobia, panelist Sullivan indeed corrected him. She pointed out that it wasn't just the right wing, but all segments of American society that are Islamophobic. Take that Ali, that'll teach you to bad mouth the "right wingers."

There was one question in the Q & A at the end of the night that stymied the panelists. In fact, it seemed to send their brains into a tizzy the way that a logical contradiction on the old Star Trek TV show caused a computer to overload. They refused to answer when I asked how Human Rights Commissions dealing with religious tolerance can deal with intolerant religious practices that promote the subjugation of women and the persecution of Gays. They were rendered speechless at having to contend with the idea of an oppressed group trampling on the legitimate rights of other people.

Unless Canadians are willing to participate in their democracy and speak out against the destruction of Canadian vales and traditions, having their rights trampled on is something we may see more and more of in the near future.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Classic bonehead fail: Papa John's restaurant calls customer "Lady Chinky Eyes" and prints that on receipt

I've always maintained that racists are stupid, but just how stupid is always a new surprise.

A woman named Minhee Cho received a receipt this week from a Papa John's restaurant in New York in which she was identified by the name a server described her: "Lady Chinky Eyes"

Minhee Cho tweeted a photo of the receipt and as one might guess, there's a new position that just opened up to replace a recently terminated Papa John's employee in New York.

Ms Cho is the Communications Manager for ProPublica, an independent journalism site. Ironically she has demonstrated something people who work in media know all too well. Celebrity gossip and odd human interest stories get far more attention than hard news. With her tweet, Ms Cho has now generated more interest in herself than ProPublica ever managed to accumulate.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Venezuelan Consul General in Miami expelled for helping Iran plan attacks on US

Venezuela has joined its ally Iran in plotting attacks on the USA according to recently published reports.

Now, Livia Acosta Noguera was declared persona non grata by the US State Department and has given her until Tuesday to leave the country.  The State Department had said last month it was looking into “very disturbing”allegations that Ms Acosta was a participant in an alleged Iranian plot to launch cyber-attacks on sensitive US national security facilities.

The Spanish language network Univision broadcast an investigative report last month detailing the cooperation between Venezuela, Iran and Cuba to ready terror cells in Mexico and Latin America to launch attacks on the US.

This video is the first segment (in Spanish) of the Univision documentary La Amenaza Irani (The Iranian Threat):

h/t Confessions of a Closet Republican

Uncle Ben's Rice versus Free Speech

The following is a letter to forward to Mars Canada following their withdrawal of advertising from Sun TV because of their coverage of the controversial Ontario school curriculum which introduces sexuality to children in Grade 1 -feel free to copy the letter and there is a link below you can use to send it to them. Mars products include Uncle Bens Rice, Wrigleys gum, Pedigree cat food, M&M  candies and Snickers  and Mars Bars:

During the Ontario Provincial election in 2011 the National Post and Sun TV network ran an ad sponsored by a group called The Institute for Canadian Values protesting the proposed Ontario public school curriculum which included teaching children as young as age 7 about sexual issues including gender identity.

Some groups objected to the language of the ad, particularly the term "corrupt" in reference to teaching children to question their gender identity. The National Post subsequently apologized for placing the ad, but Sun TV did not, and featured it in their news broadcasts as a matter of discussion and public debate over the Ontario school curriculum.

Many Canadians are deeply concerned about the poor judgement and potential psychological damage of introducing sexualized education to children too young to comprehend and process such information. The Institute for Canadian Values is closely associated with Reverend Charles McVety, a Canadian clergyman who has voiced strong opposition to Gay marriage. However many Canadians who support Gay marriage and transsexual rights also strongly object to introducing a sexualized curriculum to children younger than 11, regardless of the sexual orientation discussed. 

The curriculum itself was fostered among other places, at the Ontario Institute for Educational Studies (OISE) a radicalized institution with programs that have a declared activist agenda. Many OISE courses and instructors actively promote anti-Capitalist, pro-Marxist, anti-Israel, and racist and/or raced based radical activism and the proposed curriculum reflects that approach.

The McGuinty government in Ontario itself seems conflicted about the issue, having conveyed mixed and obfuscating messages about its intentions about introducing it in schools. Clearly the issue and the range of opinions about it are important parts of public discourse.

Under pressure from activist groups, Mars Canada/Uncle Ben's has withdrawn advertising from Sun News as a result of its allowing the ad and discussion about this important matter of public policy. Mars was clear in saying that it withdrew its advertising because of Sun's coverage of this issue, saying to a blogger:

Dear Mr. Murphy,

Based on feedback from consumers such as yourself, UNCLE BEN'S will not be advertising on Sun TV in 2012. 
We thank you for taking the time to contact us with your concerns and for your loyalty towards the UNCLE BEN'S brand. 

Rather than simply removing its advertising from Sun TV without comment, by taking this action in concert with the public statement, Mars Canada has effectively taken a position against the free exchange of ideas and links itself with advocates for a sexualized classroom agenda.

As a private concern, Mars Canada is at liberty to associate itself or not associate itself with any organization it chooses.

Mars Canada should be aware that as consumers, we have that same right.

As long as Mars Canada effectively takes a political stand that effectively punishes a news network for addressing an important public issue and continues to boycott Sun TV, I will cease to purchase Uncle Ben's products and  use the many alternatives that Mars’ competitors offer.

If you agree with what you're read, you can copy and send it to Mars Canada at this link, or feel free to make any changes you wish

Another "Arab Spring" triumph: Egyptian Christian on trial for posting Mickey Mouse with beard on twitter

The "offending" cartoon
The Central Cairo Prosecution has referred Coptic businessman Naguib Sawiris to trial over charges of defamation of religion.

In June, Sawiris posted a picture depicting Mickey Mouse wearing a beard and Minnie Mouse wearing a face veil on his Twitter account, a cartoon that many Muslims considered offensive.

More at Elder of Ziyon

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Coming to terms with President Romney

After yesterday's Republican debate and Newt Gingrich's lacklustre performance, I think it's time all of us started to come to terms with what looks like the most likely outcome of the GOP primaries: President Mitt Romney.

Rick Santorum is not going the be the Republican nominee. Even the GOP isn't so self destructive that they want the abortion debate and Santorum's other extremely socially conservative positions to be the focus costing them independent voters leading up to November.  Don't get me wrong, Santorum's a pretty good Senator, but he isn't Presidential material. Certainly not yet.

Ron Paul is saddled with a conspiracy theoried, racist past that makes him completely nonviable. As total no-hoper, he may be running on principle or his perennial nomination efforts might just be for the purpose of keeping his speaking fees high.

John Huntsman, the candidate that intelligent, moderate Republicans all over really wanted to win, but in whose candidacy they never really put any faith, is climbing in the polls. Who knows, he may emerge on top soon; after all, he's the only "not Mitt" that hasn't yet.

But with Romney's massive, overflowing coffers, and his improved confidence and presidential bearing, the likelihood of him emerging as the nominee seems very close to a reality.

It could be worse. Much worse. Romney is reasonable and has generally sound policies. For all his talk about wanting a Constitutional amendment defining marriage as being only a condition between a man and a woman, given the difficulty in amending the Constitution, that's probably just talk to pander to the social conservatives. Therein lies the problem for many of them, they suspect that Romney's nods to that part of the party are just empty rhetoric.

I hope that's true. Because it's not the extremists who are going to win the election for the Republicans. They aren't going to decide Romney's too liberal and vote for Barack Obama. The worst that could happen, from the GOP perspective, is that they stay home on election day. But realizing that doing so helps keep President Obama in office is probably not going to make that risk a great one. And even if it did, Romney is likely to pick up more disaffected Democrats and independents than he'll lose in Republicans.

President Mitt Romney. If the economy stays the way it is, and Obama continues to blunder his way through foreign policy by leading from behind, it's a phrase we should be prepared to get used to.

It could definitely be worse.

Death threats to Canadian blogger! Do certain `special groups`get a free pass on crime?

We've seen unequal justice being meted out in Caledonia.

Another new story is the case of death threats that a Canadian blogger has received.

There is a long history of the family involved with making the death threats and allegations of corruption in the York Regional Police. The clan making death threats has also claimed they have a York Regional Police detective in their pocket. So far York Police have not taken action against the perpetrators of the death threats, making one wonder if these allegations are true. There are all sorts of allegations about corruption in the York Regional Police floating around the Internet and mainstream media.

A proper investigation by the Attorney General`s office through either the Ontario Provincial Police or RCMP with the findings made public should occur so that the York Police can either be vindicated if the allegations are false or the department purged if they are true.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Researchers at McGill create Super Soldier Ants

Great. Maybe next they can create mosquitoes that can suck a pint of blood in one go.

But seriously, it's an important discovery that provides more clues about evolution.

Now please don't invent super termites or sabre-toothed squirrels.

I am a free animal, not a Whopper with cheese!

Runaway cow endured 9 months on the run in the wild before being taken to a refuge farm.

From the Vancouver Sun:

When it was first spotted, Langley and Surrey RCMP patrol cars tried to herd it down the highway, but the cow escaped and ended up taking refuge at Surrey Bend Regional Park.

It survived, living off the grass in the bog and the kindness of strangers who fed it hay when winter fell. On Dec. 11, when someone contacted Lifeforce and Hamilton learned of the cow's plight, he took action.

"This was a herd animal that had been living on its own with no experience at all," he said, "It was seen being chased into the Fraser River by vicious dogs; there are coyotes around, it was cold."

h/t Tammy Bruce

Friday, January 6, 2012

Harper condemns attacks on Gatineau Mosque

A Gatineau mosque bore the scars of hateful graffiti this morning after its facade was spray painted with Stars of David and offensive anti-Arab and Muslim messages and cars were smashed in the facility's parking lot.  This is only the most trecent in a spate of such attacks in that area.

Prime Minister Harper and the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center of Canada both condemned the anti-Muslim and racist vandalism.

This deplorable act reflects an unusual new chapter in senseless racist symbolism. Racially motivated vandals paint emblems representing something their victims would find offensive or ones that identify them for targeting. In the early days of Hitler's Germany before the destruction switched from property to people, Jewish stores were painted with swastikas to offend and Stars of David to identify.

During the current upheavals in the Arab world, various sides paint Stars of David on depictions of their enemies. In Egypt and Libya respectively, opposition parties showed pictures of Hosni Mubarak and Mouamar Gaddafi with Jewish stars drawn on them. The implication being that being a Jew or allied with Jews is the most offensive thing that can be said about a Muslim.

And now we're seeing it here in Canada.

Cornell University Scientists Discover Time Warp Cloaking

From Nature:

Recent research has uncovered a remarkable ability to manipulate and control electromagnetic fields to produce effects such as perfect imaging and spatial cloaking1, 2. To achieve spatial cloaking, the index of refraction is manipulated to flow light from a probe around an object in such a way that a ‘hole’ in space is created, and the object remains hidden3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14. Alternatively, it may be desirable to cloak the occurrence of an event over a finite time period, and the idea of temporal cloaking has been proposed in which the dispersion of the material is manipulated in time, producing a ‘time hole’ in the probe beam to hide the occurrence of the event from the observer15

And more at The Washington Post and diagrams at The Daily Mail

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Ron Paul hearts the John Birch Society

I hate commies as much as the next guy, but anyone who thinks water fluoridation is part of a communist plot is a bit too overboard for me.

The following is from Jonathan Kay's blog:

On the New York Times web site, James Kirchick has a very good piece about Ron Paul’s penchant for conspiracy theories. Here is part of it:
In a 1990 C-Span appearance, taped between Congressional stints, Paul was asked by a caller to comment on the “treasonous, Marxist, alcoholic dictators that pull the strings in our country.” Rather than roll his eyes, Paul responded,“there’s pretty good evidence that those who are involved in the Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations usually end up in positions of power. And I believe this is true.”
Paul then went on to stress the negligible differences between various “Rockefeller Trilateralists.” The notion that these three specific groups — the Trilateral Commission, the Council on Foreign Relations and the Rockefeller family — run the world has been at the center of far-right conspiracy theorizing for a long time, promoted especially by the extremist John Birch Society, whose 50th anniversary gala dinner Paul keynoted in 2008.
Read the rest at Among the Truthers

Ron Paul giving the keynote address at the John Birch Society's 50th anniversary celebration:

Presbyterian Moderator who blames Palestinian suffering on "the Jewish Lobbies" says "I quite love the Jewish community"

Orwell couldn't have done a better job if he had invented Rev. Rick Horst.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Communist fanatics at Canada's most biased, bigoted media outlet want a boycott of Sun News because of its baises.

This should work wonders.

The "strategy" a hysterical rabble.ca writer wants to employ is to have his fellow communists find a particular auto dealer to boycott it if it continues to advertise in Sun papers.

David C. Climenhaga, a regular rabble.ca columnist, was terribly offended that Ezra Levant ended a broadcast encouraging a counter-boycot of Chiquita bananas for their proposed boycott of Alberta tar sands oil with the Spanish phrase "Chinga tu madre!" (F**k your mother).

I never knew the halfwits at rabble.ca were so sensitive about profanity. It's not unpredictable. The perpetually aggrieved hatemongers who are the "official" media sponsors of Israeli Apartheid Week are always on the lookout for something to offend their delicate sensibilities and give their rasion  d'etre of being able to call themselves activists a jolt.

Here's a tip for the geniuses at rabble: their strategy only works if they bought cars from that dealer in the past. Boycotting someone you've never purchased from before in your life isn't really a boycott.

A car dealer may not be the best choice. Rabble.ca is almost completely funded by public service unions and the NDP-linked advocacy organizations The Council of Canadians and The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. A hotbed of mindless radicalism published by NDP House Leader Libby Davies' spouse Kim Elliott, it could never survive on its own without those subsidies.

According to online ratings site Alexa.com, rabble's audience is primarily made up of women over the age of 65 who have some college education, but not degrees.

Rabble "readers" should try something a little more realistic. Do makers of support hose or organic health food stores advertise on Sun News?

Newt Gingrich finishes 4th in Iowa

That shouldn't really be the headline.

It should have been "Romney wins by a nose over a surging Santorum."

But Iowa is Iowa. Its a nice place to..um....buy fresh corn and catch a good college football game, but it's not the place to decide the outcome of the presidential race. Not yet, anyway.

Michelle Bachman has dropped out. Perry is "Reassessing" his candidacy. Huntsman is, well, no one really knows what he's doing. He's a good guy but running a stealth candidacy is not going to win him anything. And Crazy Dr. Paul is still along for comic relief.

But in the real world, It's now a 3 man race between Romney, Santorum and Gingrich.

The LA Times reports that a super PAC poured millions into Iowa to campaign against Gingrich. That money helped there, but we'll see what happens in the primaries to come.

It could emerge that Romney of Santorum ends up as the GOP nominee in 2012. But I haven't written the wily old Speaker out yet.

h/t American Power and Blazing Cat Fur

Today's blog recommendation: Johnny Optimism

A comic strip about a wheelchair bound lad who tries to look on the bright side of life

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Occupy Stupidity! Columbia U to offer course in Occupy Wall Street

If you can afford the tuition for Columbia University, you are the 1%.

But that isn't a big deal for Columbia University Anthropology professor Hannah Appel, who is starting up a credited course in Anthropology on the discredited Occupy movement called “Occupy the Field: Global Finance, Inequality, Social Movement."  Her stated goal, other than to try to impart some validity upon an incoherent protest movement is, according to the New Yotk Post,  "to push back against the rhetoric of ‘disorganization’ or ‘a movement without a message.’ A frequent camper at Zuccotti  Park and staunch defender of the Occupy Movement, Appel hasn't yet shared what the mysterious message of the movement that has given rise to rapes, murders, assaults and drug-overdose deaths is exactly. 

Maybe you have to be able to afford the $47,000 annual tuition at Columbia to be let into that secret.

h/t Small Dead Animals

The strange case of Baylor U's Marc Ellis

An odd professor by the name of Marc Ellis is the Director of Baylor University’s Center for American and Jewish Studies in Texas. To get an idea of where Ellis' head is at, one need only read his recent quote extolling the vapid Occupy Movement:  "Think Karl Marx, the great exemplar of social justice."

This idolizer of the creator of a form of social justice that murdered 100 million people in the last century is an anti-Israel professor prone to weird statements like, "Put simply, "Jewish" has taken on an imperial and colonial flavor."

Baylor is trying to get rid of Ellis but no one outside the university administration, Ellis and his lawyers seems to know why, and no one is talking.

Ellis blames Baylor University's president Ken Starr for his woes. (Yes, that Ken Starr, the prosecutor who went after Bill Clinton for lying about his relationship with Monica Lewinsky) .

All parties agree that charges had been filed against Ellis, who said, "Former Baylor University presidents Herbert Reynolds, Robert Sloan, John Lilley and Bill Underwood were protective of me against tides of criticism which powerful others swept to my feet through the years..Thus, I wondered when Kenneth Starr became president if the protections would change.”

Ellis' supporters are centred at the group Jewish Voice for Peace, an organization made up largely of Reconstructionist Jews, a sect whose religious leaders seemingly get their divinity degrees from ads at the back of comic books. They contend that Ellis is being dismissed for his anti-Israel opinions.

They have started a petition which has anti-Zionist denizens like Desmond Tutu and Cornel West helming it, claiming, "Marc Ellis is under internal investigation in what looks more and more like a persecution to silence a Jewish voice of dissent. In short, Baylor is re-writing its rules to dismiss Marc Ellis from the faculty."

Yeah, except according to the Baylor Lariat, the Baptist university's student newspaper, neither Ellis nor his lawyers nor supporters will divulge which rules are allegedly being rewritten and what the charges are against him. The university can only disclose them with Ellis' consent and he has so far refused to give it. He appears to be alleging the university is selectively enforcing rules, but he won't say which ones.

Make of that what you will, but here is a man who wants people to rush to his defence, and won't tell them from what they are supposed to be defending him. That's just the sort of logic one could reasonably expect from the head of a Jewish studies department who seeks to cripple the country created as a Jewish refuge.