Wednesday, June 27, 2012

House of Commons staff refuse to provide footage of Liberals' Nazi Salute

Almost two weeks ago, Liberal MP's Wayne Easter and Hedy Fry were accused of throwing Nazi salutes in the direction of Prime Minister Harper during the 24-hour Opposition filibuster.  As I promised, I have contacted the House of Commons Broadcasting Services to request a copy of the Commons footage during that time.

They first directed me to ParlVu, which hosts the video of the House online.

The video in question is here.  Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver makes the accusation against the Liberal MP's following motion 706, which begins at 7:13:30 and ends around 7:16:37.

However, there's a problem here: Broadcasting policies dictate that the camera angle being shown to the viewer must only be on the person being recognized by the Speaker of the House.  So when the Conservatives are beginning to stand to vote on motion 706, the camera angle online is focused on Conservatives, even though there are several other cameras filming the rest of the House.

So I went back to Broadcasting Services, requesting the footage of the motion 706 vote focused on the Liberals.

They refused, saying the only available camera angle is the one already online.

Canadians deserve to know whether two Liberal MP's did in fact make this disgusting disgraceful gesture to our Right Honourable Prime Minister.  In fact, it would seem to actually benefit the Liberals to find and release this footage, if there was not in fact any such salute made.

What's going on here?

UPDATE - June 28: after another inquiry with Broadcasting Services, they responded they would "look into" why they can't release the footage of the other camera angles and get back to me.  Progress?

UPDATE - July 5: the response to my inquiry is that, although the House of Commons has dozens of cameras on MP's from all angles, the only camera doing any recording is the camera focused on the Speaker, or the MP being recognized by the Speaker.  But then, what footage was the Speaker of the House reviewing in the first place? What are we witnessing here?

Monday, June 25, 2012

An amusing observation in Maclean's

This comment was in the July 9, 2012 edition of Maclean's:

"The Capital Diary column of June 11 includes a photo of the Green Party's Elizabeth May behind Opposition House Leader Nathan Cullen, yet the text has no reference to her or her one-person party. What a wonderfully symbolic summation of her relevance to the government of Canada: a smirking face behind the NDP with nothing to say."

This is the photo to which the writer is referring:

What do you think? Is the writer's assessment accurate?

Friday, June 22, 2012

Mulcair's rampant lies spell trouble for Canadian politics

This is the story of how Canadians get turned away from parliament and
how politicians get a bad reputation: Members of Parliament, including
those who are supposedly the "Prime Minister in waiting" ready to form
the "government in waiting" just flat out lie!

Yesterday, to wrap up the final Question Period before parliament stands
up for the summer, Opposition leader Thomas Mulcair posed the following
question to the Prime Minister:

"Mr. Speaker, this spring we saw the Conservatives abandon the very
principles they claim they came to Ottawa to defend: ramming through
their Trojan Horse budget bill, gutting their own Federal Accountability
Act, treating their backbench MPs like a rubber stamp, using closure a
record number of times, engaging in electoral fraud and slush funds and,
of course, having ministers travelling the world staying in luxury
hotels and taking $23,000 limo rides on the taxpayers' dime."

Pretty convincing isn't it?

Except that it's a blatant lie! Every bit of it.

"ramming through their Trojan Horse budget bill"

First of all, I'd like to point out that it seems the NDP clearly still
do not understand what the Trojan horse was or the symbol it represents.
But like the covered-ear screams blindly proclaiming Canada has "Dutch
disease," even when all evidence says you're wrong, the NDP has
obliviously continued using this false analogy. And this comes in the
same fashion as the NDP claiming the budget bill was being "concealed"
or "hidden" when in actual fact you, me, or anyone else can go online
and read it. (Really! It's right here.)

Secondly, when exactly was this "ramming through" and why did everyone
but the NDP miss it? The budget was introduced on March 29, 2012; the
House debated the budget for nine sitting days; the standing committee
on finance sat for 14 days to study and debate the budget; and finally
the House debated for another four days, including the "marathon vote"
in which the Opposition filibustered by presenting over 800 amendments!

Best of all, when the Conservatives introduced a motion to extend
parliament's debate time by 5 hours a night (to midnight as opposed to
7:00pm), the NDP opposed it!

Luckily the Speaker was able to cut the filibuster down to size, but it
still resulted in MP's voting non-stop for over 24 hours. Opposition
members were even ordered to "stand up as slow as possible" to delay the voting even longer!

The only ramming done was the NDP repeatedly kicking Canadians as a
painful reminder that delaying the budget was delaying benefits for all

"gutting their own Federal Accountability Act"

Another flat - out - lie! There is no bill before parliament that
amends the Federal Accountability Act, nor has there been since
parliament first met in June 2011. Not even the budget bill contains
amendments to the Act. In fact, the Treasury Board website notes the
last amendments to the Act were in regards to strengthening lobbying
rules and they were in 2008!

"treating their backbench MPs like a rubber stamp"

This accusation has me puzzled. Is Mulcair suggesting the Conservative
ministers make legislation with no input from their caucus members
(which isn't true)? Or is he suggesting MP's are just expected to leave
everything to the Prime Minister's Office (also not true)? There seems
to be some attempt to continue that "wah! The Prime Minister is
controlling everything!" fantasy, but it isn't working, not with vague
claims like this.

"using closure a record number of times"

Closure is an anti-filibuster mechanism meant to allocate a specific
amount of time for debate on a bill before it's voted on. It's been in
use since 1913 and is a standard practice in commonwealth countries
including Great Britain and Australia, both of which follow the
Wesminster style of government and thus have an Opposition with a vested
interest in delaying proceedings and making noise over nothing. And
considering that we've seen the NDP and Liberals filibuster everything
from Canada Post to tax savings for Canadians, we can't blame the
government for being weary, lest we devolve into American filibusters in
which one person has spoken for more than 24 hours.

I thought the NDP was against American-style politics?

"engaging in electoral fraud"

You mean the same blatantly false "electoral fraud" allegations that now have NDP MP Pat
Martin being sued for libel?

Canadians have been fed this load of crap for months now and, luckily,
aren't buying any of it. The simple challenge by the Prime Minister
months ago - "can you guys prove it and let Elections Canada do their
investigation?" - remains unanswered, and the media remains heavily
biased in pursuing headlines without facts. For the record, this
summary remains the baseline of real, factual information.

Seriously Tom, who's doing your research?

"having ministers travelling the world staying in luxury hotels and
taking $23,000 limo rides on the taxpayers' dime."

Let me first point out that basically every conservative out there has
noted minister Bev Oda will be demoted and/or shuffled from her current
position because of her spending controversy. Even though her spending
is within Treasury Board guidelines, Canadians are uneasy with the fact
that the minister upgraded from an on-site five-star hotel to a more
expensive off-site five-star hotel with no justification.

But this $23,000 figure? That sure seems like a lot of money for one
car ride in one city at one meeting, as was the controversy with which
Mulcair premised the earlier part of his question.

Oh, right, that's because it's a lie as well.

$21,494 is actually the over time Oda paid her driver for the entire
year for being on stand-by. You see, ministers are busy people
who work long hours (like Jason Kenney's 20-hour days which earned him
the title of hardest working MP for 2011), and
they need drivers to get across the city. Oda's driver logged just
under 600 hours of over time for 2011, which works out to just over $24
an hour at 1.5 times the driver's normal hourly rate.

I thought the NDP was in favour of high wages for the average working
class folk?

My conclusion in noting that Canada's socialist-in-chief was able to lie
six times in one sentence is pretty obvious: how can we ask Canadians to
tune into politics and follow what their government is doing when our
Prime Minister in waiting can't tell the truth?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Who is Canada's real Official Opposition?

I just love being able to predict what the NDP's lines of attack will be during Question Period based on what's trending in the Toronto Star or the Globe and Mail or the CBC.

Take today, for example.

Mulcair rose to acknowledge Prime Minister Harper's tireless work to get Canada a seat at the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks.  But at what cost? Mulcair asked again and again.  Did we sell out our freshwater?  Did we end our supply management protection of eggs?  Are we protecting our milk supply management system? Did we sell out our manufacturing sector?  Sell out human rights standards? [I'm paraphrasing]

Strange, because that's almost exactly what the leading left-wing news agencies asked, too, just hours before  Question Period.

The Toronto Star pondered "what's behind?" the TPP talks?  Then the Star asked "now what? Does it mean the beginning of the end of this country’s decades-old milk supply management system?"

The Winnipeg Free Press questioned whether "the price of admission" was "too costly."  Did Harper "panic" and "give too much away?"

And the Globe and Mail, echoing the fourth example of the NDP blatantly following their media friends' stories, questioned "at what cost" we joined talks; including, oh, look, "Canada’s protection of its dairy, poultry and egg industries from foreign competition."

When the Opposition picks their lines of attack based on what their friends in the Media Party are reporting that day, it's a good day for the Conservatives.  It's also a good day for Canadians, knowing they can easily ignore Parliament for the next 3 years and just read the morning headlines of your typical leftist newspaper.

Let's test my theory: dumpster-diving "journalist" Glen McGregor, who has a colourful history of accurately reporting facts (take the robocall debate), just broke the story that Jenni Byrne received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal from the Governor General.  Byrne is a high-ranking government leader who recently ran a multi-million dollar national election campaign.  And yes, she happens to be Conservative, but who cares?  The Governor General felt she met the criteria laid out for awarding this medal: that she was a Canadian who “made a significant contribution to a particular province, territory, region or community within Canada, or an achievement abroad that brings credit to Canada.”

But since when is being Conservative an issue worth media attention? (Yes, rhetorical question, I know: I was fired from the Toronto Star for being a Conservative)

But hey, this story is catchy.  Social media is already exploding with accusations of patronage and corruption and questioning whether Mrs. Byrne really deserved this award.

So here's my prediction: Thomas Mulcair rises during tomorrow's Question Period to condemn the government's "corrupt" "patronage" to have the audacity to reward a hard-working female in a male-dominated profession in the Queen's name.  In fact, this shows how the Governor General is just a corrupted figurehead who operates under the whim of Prime Minister Harper.  And why did the Prime Minister meet with the Queen in private, anyway?  I bet she's in on the whole thing!  So, it's clear from yet another scandal, that it's time to end ties with the monarchy!

What do you think?

Monday, June 18, 2012

More information on the Opposition Nazi Salute

Following the Opposition's Nazi salute towards Prime Minister Harper last week, it seems there is some faith left in the media accurately reporting on parliamentary events instead of covering for their Liberal and NDP friends.

The original salute took place on June 14, 2012.  By June 18, the National Post reported the Nazi salute and Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver fingered Liberal MP's Hedy Fry and Wayne Easter as the culprits who saluted the Prime Minister in such a disrespectful and disgraceful manner.

Metro News also reported the same on June 18, as did Sun News.

Sun News also notes above Speaker Andrew Scheer will be reviewing the video tape to determine whether the Liberals did in fact make such a gesture.

Like many commenters on my earlier article, I too want to see the video evidence of such a disgusting act, and I have since contacted CPAC and asked to see the footage.  If and when this footage is located, it should be publicly released.

... And what else?  How do Canadians properly hold to account two disgraceful Liberal MP's who apparently find these actions acceptable?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Opposition gives Prime Minister Harper the Nazi Salute in the House of Commons

Really, how low can the NDP-Liberal Opposition go?

... And why is it that only The Charlottetown Guardian seems to feel this was newsworthy enough to report?

Friday, June 15, 2012

A short but important correction for Maclean's

Published in Maclean's Magazine, June 25, 2012 edition

Letter writer Gloria Thompson states that Alberta’s oil sands profits “are kept within Alberta and are only for Albertans” (Letters, June 11, 2012).  This is incorrect.  In fact, Alberta sends over $21 billion per year to the federal government, which translates into $5700 being taken from every Albertan man, woman, and child.  This money is then given to provinces like Quebec and the formerly great Ontario.  Canadians are also flocking to Alberta’s oil sands in the thousands, sometimes sending this money back home to their families on the East coast and other times moving their families to Alberta.  Ironically, it’s Alberta’s oil sands that are subsidizing the selfish Quebec students.  Thompson should recognize Alberta is leading the way while Canada’s two formerly great “have” provinces make reckless and short-sighted policy decisions, like Dalton McGuinty’s relentless tax hikes and Quebec’s $7-a-day daycare.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Can't we just declare the Opposition in Contempt of Parliament?

We all know the Opposition likes to throw around "contempt of
parliament" charges like they mean anything, so why can't Conservatives
do it back to them?

The Speaker of the House of Commons will be ruling today whether the
Opposition's over 800 amendments - over 800! - will be allowed to be
voted on individually
). Green Party MP Elizabeth May alone is
putting forth 200 amendments!

If so, MP's will be running a marathon in the House of Commons for 5
days by some estimates! Nonstop. Quorum will always be needed, as will
a majority of the votes to pass the voting on that amendment.

The NDP admits this is just partisan gamesmanship. It's gamesmanship
that puts Canadians and Canada's economy at risk at a fragile time.
Everyday the NDP delays this bill is another day Canadians don't receive
Budget 2012's numerous tax breaks.

I thought the NDP cared for blue-collar, average Canadians, but it's
clear from this posturing their only objective is to play to their big
union donors.

But wait.

NDP House Leader Nathan Cullen admits his party is going to "use
whatever means necessary" to delay the passage of the bill
). The Liberals too are using the same stalling tactics to
delay the bill, and even Elizabeth May admitted "there is nothing I
won't do" to stop the budget from passing

Keep in mind, regardless of what games the Opposition want to play with
Canadians' hard-earned money, the bill will pass!

What's the definition of Contempt of Parliament again? Oh, right:
"interference with parliamentary privilege and of certain acts that
obstruct the house and its members in their business."

Enough said. Let's introduce a motion to find the NDP, Liberals, and
Green Party in contempt of parliament, but instead of forcing an
election, they get to rise for the summer early and go back to their

Then the government can get back to work on creating jobs and ensuring
Canada's economy remains the best in the world.

Electronic rust proofing: fact or fiction?

NOTE: I'd like to thank everyone for their interest in this article. However, I must stress that I am NOT an expert nor am I offering any sort of advice, recommendation, or preference for or against electronic rust proofing or any other rust proofing device or service. My intent in posting this was only to consolidate the various articles and studies that I had found out there when I was looking into the product for myself. Please ensure you consult a professional before choosing a product.

Angela and I recently made the great purchase of a brand new 2012
Chevrolet Cruze. After solid research and reviews of the same year
Honda Civic, Mazda 3, Ford Focus, Mitsubishi Lancer, and a few other
Kias and Hyundais, we overwhelmingly felt that the Cruze was our best
option for price, reliability, quality, options, and warranty.

We took it for a test drive and shook on the deal.

Then it came time for the Business Manager to upsell a few extra
products and services. We had no problem extending the warranty and
covering the car bumper to bumper, so basically the only expenses for at
least 5 years are maintenance and gas.

When it came time to choose rust proofing, however, there seems to be
significant controversy surrounding what works best.

We were offered an electronic rust proofer for $800, normally selling
for $1200 (I'm aware the apparent "deal" I was getting was probably
false). On the one hand, you have people who swear by the electronic
force field created by the electronics: it connects directly to the
battery and ionizes the car to prevent rust (known as a cathodic anode
or cathode protection). See these Canadian Tire reviews, for example. The device itself
is guaranteed for life, meaning it can be taken from one car and put
into another. More on the rust protection guarantee later.

Some controversy arises surrounding whether the procedure works, or
whether it's snake oil. There is no question a cathode anode prevents
rust on enormous bridges, buildings, and ships. But some suggest the
process can't work in a car, either because a) the tires prevent the car
from being grounded; b) the anode hooked up to the car battery is too
weak; or c) both or some combination.

On the other hand seems to be the "old-school" rust proofing through a
chemical and/or oil application, such as Krown.
Krown is an annual application for $100-120, so by comparison, rust
proofing a car every year for 8 years is the same cost as the electronic

Considering both of these, the question to me became how well the
electronic system was guaranteed. I could only imagine the horror of
this electronic system being guaranteed, but when it actually comes time
to pay up because there's rust suddenly it becomes "oh, well first read
these exceptions."

Then again, if this device protects against all rust from every vehicle
I'll ever own forever, $800 is a good deal.

The guaranteed conditions by the dealership are as follows:

* There will be no rust anywhere on the vehicle, including surface
rust, for six years (some people thought a loophole was that the
electronic system didn't guarantee against surface rust)
* The only parts that are not guaranteed to be rust free are any
attachments or modifications I make (e.g. replace a door, add a spoiler,

Right now I'm between options but think it's worth while to try.

I'll be taking regular photographs and will certainly be talking about
it if it turns out rust develops and that is somehow not covered.

What are your experiences? Are you sold on the new electronic rust

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Canada is one step closer to allowing free speech

Canadians should rejoice over the fact that yesterday parliament voted decisively in favour of passing Bill C-304, An Act to (Protecting Freedom) ( and sending it to the Senate.

The private member's bill, drafted by Conservative MP Brian Storseth, proposes a very simple amendment to enable Canadians the right to free speech, a supposed sacred value to the Liberals, who drafted the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, even though yesterday they voted against it.

Conservative Party faithful will note repealing s. 13 has long been a policy goal, enshrined in their policy document passed by the entire Conservative Party membership (

iii) We support legislation to remove authority from the Canadian Human Rights Commission and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal to regulate, receive, investigate or adjudicate complaints related to section 13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act.

C-304 proposes that section 13 be removed from the Canadian Human Rights Act. S. 13 currently states:

13. (1) It is a discriminatory practice for a person or a group of persons acting in concert to communicate telephonically or to cause to be so communicated, repeatedly, in whole or in part by means of the facilities of a telecommunication undertaking within the legislative authority of Parliament, any matter that is likely to expose a person or persons to hatred or contempt by reason of the fact that that person or those persons are identifiable on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination.

(2) For greater certainty, subsection (1) applies in respect of a matter that is communicated by means of a computer or a group of interconnected or related computers, including the Internet, or any similar means of communication, but does not apply in respect of a matter that is communicated in whole or in part by means of the facilities of a broadcasting undertaking.

(3) For the purposes of this section, no owner or operator of a telecommunication undertaking communicates or causes to be communicated any matter described in subsection (1) by reason only that the facilities of a telecommunication undertaking owned or operated by that person are used by other persons for the transmission of that matter.

Storseth's legislation would completely repeal the preceding text, and also amend possible punishments under the CHRA: no person can be ordered to be removed from their employment position, nor can anyone be ordered to be removed from their residence due to a finding under the CHRA.

Storseth noted the disturbing trend of frivolous "hate speech" complaints being taken to unelected, untrained civil servants at an agency known as the "Canadian Human Rights Commission." The Commission is responsible for upholding the CHRA, and it has provincial counterparts who also uphold their province's respective human rights codes.

But Storseth rightly notes there are already hate speech provisions engrained in the Criminal Code: s. 318 prevents advocating for genocide and 319 says a person may not publicly incite hatred against an identifiable group.

Most importantly, these complaints are handled by law enforcement professionals and the justice system, not bureaucrats.

The egregious miscarriages of justice handed out over the years by these commissions are precisely laid out in Shakedown: How Our Government is Undermining Democracy ( I too have previously written about them (, but for the sake of shock and outrage they bare repeating:

* Ezra Levant was brought before the Alberta HRC for publishing photos of Mohammed
* Mark Steyn was prosecuted by the British Columbia HRC for writing an article in Maclean's Magazine titled The Future Belongs to Islam. When the Canadian Islamic Congress wasn't allowed "equal space for a rebuttal," they said Maclean's was violating their human rights!
* Guy Earle, a comedian, was fined $22,500 by the Ontario HRC after he traded some choice words with two lesbian hecklers. They claimed Earle was discriminating against them, rather than doing what comedians do when you interrupt their show.
* Sinem Ketenci, a Ryerson University student, brought her professor to the Ontario HRC after she was told her Master's degree dissertation on social work could not be about "how maltreated animals are the same as marginalized people." Ketenci is demanding $15,000 because apparently this treatment is "systemic discrimination and harassment that silences marginalized minorities, such as me as a Racialized Ethical Vegan." Seriously.

Human rights are intended to be a shield, not a sword. Repealing section 13 is the first step in enforcing actual human rights and clearing the HRC's of frivolous complaints.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Where does the NDP stand on the monarchy? Not even they know

The NDP really can't figure out where they stand.  Just a few months ago they flip-flopped on marijuana, when Thomas Mulcair altered the NDP's pro-marijuana stance under Jack Layton.

Now they're flipping on Canada's monarchy.

Just yesterday NDP MP Pat Martin called the monarchy "old fashioned and outdated."

But today (I'm watching live right now) NDP MP Peter Stoffer said the Queen is a “symbol of grace and wonderful achievement."  He even stressed that they were Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition.

So which is it?  Generally such a stance is codified in a party's constitution and/or policy document, such as the Conservative Party's and the Liberal Party's.

I'd be very interested in hearing from NDP supporters out there, who can't be happy that their party's leaders have continually flip-flopped on issue to issue, from MP to MP.

EDIT: my original post stated the NDP constitution was offline.  In fact there was an issue with viewing the document online: it has to be downloaded from the site in order to display properly.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Thousands of fire fighters take advantage of federal government tax credit

The Conservative government's volunteer fire fighter tax credit has been
a huge success in its first year.

Information obtained from the Canada Revenue Agency says 27,305
volunteer fire fighters claimed the tax credit on their 2011 tax

The credit was originally a Conservative platform promise during the May
2011 federal election, which allows volunteer fire fighters who
volunteer at least 200 hours per year to claim $3000 on their annual tax
returns. It came among a slew of other tax credits promised by the
Conservatives, such as the children's art and fitness tax credit; a tax
credit for first-time home buyers; a tax credit for public transit;
deductions for tradespersons' tools; and more.

By comparison, the only discussion on taxes held by the Liberals and NDP
were tax increases. They threatened Canadians with a multi-billion
dollar eco-tax and an even more expensive carbon tax. These measures
would see taxes explode for Canadian families, and send gas prices
skyrocketing - among just about everything else we buy.

"Every day in Canada, almost 85,000 brave men and women are ready to put
their own lives at risk to protect the lives and property of their
friends, neighbours, and even perfect strangers. Our Government
recognizes these efforts and is proud to have introduced the Volunteer
Firefighter Tax Credit," said Gail Shea, Minister of National Revenue,
on the tax credit's launch last spring.

The credit was originally launched in Ottawa with Finance Minister Jim
Flaherty and Fire Chief John de Hooge. De Hooge presented the minister
with a commemorative helmet to show his appreciation.

Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs President Rob Simonds said he was
pleased with the introduction of this tax credit.

But while the Conservative Party supports Canadian heroes, the NDP and
Liberals are busy ensuring these heroes do not receive the tax break
they deserve. Budget 2011 included the volunteer fire fighters' tax
credit, among other vitally important tax relief measures for Canadians.

The NDP and Liberals voted against it.

Now we're into Budget 2012: Jobs, Growth, and Long-Term Prosperity and
the NDP and Liberals seem bent on voting against it this year, too.

Budget 2012 supports jobs and growth under the same plan that has
created over 700,000 net new jobs for Canada since July 2009. Budget
2012 ensures Canada responsibly develops our natural resources while
protecting the environment through "one project, one review." Budget
2012 also saves small businesses money by extending the Small Business
Hiring Tax Credit, ensuring our local businesses can hire employees to
continue growing our economy. And Budget 2012 also ensures Canada
returns to balanced budgets by 2015-2016, among several other

But the NDP and Liberals, driven by ideology and not what Canadians
want, already seem destined to vote against these important measures.
Measures like the volunteer fire fighters' tax credit.

The Conservative government has eliminated or reduced over 150 taxes on
Canadians and their families since 2006, the fire fighters' tax credit
being one of the most recent.