Showing posts from June 23, 2014

CBC personalities sign petition opposing planned cuts to documentaries

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[Meanwhile, Harper flunkies on CBC Board aver, "I deny your reality, and replace it with my own." Canada: Freedom From Information (TM). *RON*]

By Laura Kane, CP / Huffington Post, 06/23/2014

TORONTO - CBC personalities including Peter Mansbridge, David Suzuki and Linden MacIntyre are speaking out against a CBC proposal to shut down in-house production of documentaries at the public broadcaster.

Anna Maria Tremonti, Carol Off and Nahlah Ayed have also signed the petition calling on the CBC to protect its documentary department by placing it under its News and Current Affairs division.

"CBC Television, to be true to its core mandate, needs more long-form journalism and legacy programming — not less," states the letter, sent to president Hubert Lacroix and head of English services Heather Conway.

At a town hall Thursday, the broadcaster is set to reveal its five-year strategic plan to employees. The CBC is battling a budget shortfal…

Employment Insurance in Canada: Hitting Rock Bottom

[This video highlights the decline of the EI program over the last 25 years. *RON*]

Sniper Stadium: Police Turn BC Place into a Gun Range

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[I missed this when it first came out -- "the VPD Military Liaison Unit (MLU) trains four to six times a year with U.S. National Guard and U.S. Army personnel in Yakima, Washington. The exercises include live ammunition training." Training for VPD and others is evidence of local police militarization. While you're at it, you might want to read about how BC Quietly Scopes Out Drones, or how our Police Departments Won't Say if They Use Cellphone ID Tech. *RON*]

By Bob Mackin, 15 Feb 2014,

Mysterious UAVS exist in a 'policy vacuum' and require greater transparency, say civil libertarians.

Device that pegs your phone in a crowd reflects a 'massive invasion of privacy' says BC civil liberties director.

A week before the fourth anniversary of the 2010 Winter Olympics opening ceremony, officers from the Vancouver Police Department and other agencies took over BC Place stadium to improve their sniper skills.


Rafe Mair: Why I'm for Massive Civil Disobedience

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[No one does a tirade quite like Rafe! I couldn't agree with him more strongly. At heart this issue defines what democracy is really about - the people, or 'interests.' The approval of Gateway, "is, simply put, an 'up yours' to our province." Now "British Columbians will learn the stuff they're made of." *RON*]

By Rafe Mair, 21 Jun 2014,
The Conservative government's decision to approve the Northern Gateway pipeline is the greatest threat to national unity since the Quebec crisis in 1995. It is reminiscent of Pierre Trudeau's National Energy Program of 1980 except in that case the program could be and was cancelled. It is, simply put, an "up yours" to our province.

What we must understand is that there will be spills and serious spills along this pipeline. This is a certainty. Enbridge's own record demonstrates this but the law of averages makes it certain.

It's worse …

Why Are BC's Natural Resource Officers Buying Bulletproof Vests?

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["Land-use cops gearing up as government courts development." Oh for pity's sake. Our government would rather, by its policies, create situations that put civil servants in front of bullets than consider going against the development wishes of large resource corporations. *RON*]

By Bob Mackin, 21 Jun 2014,

B.C.'s government is shopping for a company to supply bulletproof vests to 150 Natural Resource officers.

The compliance and enforcement branch of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations issued a tender notice with a June 27 deadline for bids to sell the government ballistic resistant soft body armour that is "designed for routine/everyday wear under the uniform."

"The province intends on purchasing most units at one time and establishing a supply arrangement for a period of 12 months after the initial delivery to facilitate any ad hoc ongoing purchases that would be required,&quo…

Kitimat residents fight for airshed study after government refuses to release report

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[Governments do not hide good news. "Families First" Ms. Clark, or profits? *RON*]

Wendy Stueck, The Globe and Mail, Jun. 22 2014

The potential consequences of pollution from industrial development on the Kitimat airshed was significant enough for the province to ask for a report into possible cumulative health and environmental effects.

But now the government is refusing to release the report, saying it is subject to Crown privilege because it is part of discussions relating to liquefied natural gas development and won’t be released until later this year.

That claim was outlined in correspondence related to a pending Environmental Appeal Board case in which two Kitimat residents are challenging a 2013 provincial permit that authorized increased sulphur dioxide emissions from the Kitimat aluminum smelter.

As part of that EAB case, lawyers for those Kitimat residents have been seeking a copy of the Kitimat Airshed Study, maintaining it would p…

A relationship cut short in B.C. with one fell swoop by Enbridge

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[Actions speak louder than words when it comes to Enbridge's often-proclaimed respect for the First Nations. *RON*]

Justine Hunter, The Globe and Mail, Jun. 22 2014

When Enbridge Inc. officials went to scope out a terminal site for their proposed Northern Gateway pipeline in Kitimat, they needed access to Crown land that is subject to land claims by the Haisla First Nation. With a provincial permit in hand, their crews pulled out chainsaws and felled ancient cedars to help with their mapping. Fourteen of the trees that were cut down had been marked in some way by the Haisla people long before British Columbia became a colony.

The trees were regarded by the Haisla as living evidence of their aboriginal rights and title, and the destruction was a serious breach.

The relationship might have been salvaged, but Enbridge officials made a hash of it. They offered some cash and requested a cleansing ceremony to address the loss of legally protected, cul…

Ahmad Chalabi, Who Conned America Into War, Now Aims To Lead Iraq

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[George W. Bush’s man in Iraq tries to take over — this time under Obama. Ain't this the truth: “It’s Iraq,” said a former CIA official, “Anything could happen.” *RON*]

Aram Roston, BuzzFeed, June 21, 2014
Ahmad Chalabi, the Iraqi politician who peddled falsehoods to persuade the United States to invade Iraq, is now attempting to take over as Iraq’s prime minister, Iraqi and American sources say.
While Chalabi has long aimed — but always failed — to lead Iraq, his latest bid has a better chance to succeed because the current prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, has been crippled by the stunning loss of a third of Iraq’s territory to Sunni militants.

“I think he’s got a decent shot,” said a former U.S. official who played a leading role in Iraq.

Chalabi’s representative in Washington, D.C., Francis Brooke, did not confirm or deny that Chalabi will put his name forward for prime minister. But in an email, he said that candidates other than Maliki “may…