This Blog will discuss politics, government, corruption, police, S.I.U., courts, education, min. of attorney general, min. of labour, v.o.i.c.e. and other current and past events of interest to concerned citizens. In the "About me" section to the right and down I have included the names of persons whom I have tremendous respect for. Their influence on me however has been primarily environmental (and personal) and this is therefore a disclaimer that all words posted on this Blog/Website are mine and I alone am responsible for them. I say this with the greatest respect and affection to my friends.
Friday, May 29, 2015
Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys this story titled "Guelph agency to honour victim in police shooting". The victim was Brandon Duncan and he suffered from mental illness, addiction and Crohn's disease. He had been living on the streets off and on for fifteen years and was known at a downtown agency which serves local homeless and marginalized residents. Sakura Saunders a local political activist is planning a protest at an upcoming Guelph Police Services Board meeting. She also referred to a number of recent fatal shootings of persons with various disorders and difficulties by Toronto police.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Sgt. Michael Ferry should be facing assault charges not a mickey mouse disciplinary hearing. He tackled a non violent protester, choked him, handcuffed him and then arrested him. For this the "disciplinary" panel want to demote the officer to constable from sergeant. How about arresting him, convicting him, sending him to jail and then telling him to get a new job where he can't bully people while hiding behind his badge and his weapons. Clean house and get rid of these assholes pretending to be police officers.
The G20 scandal exposed Canada for what it is: a psuedo democracy at best. Police went out of their way to break the laws of the land and to harass, intimidate and bully honest citizens. Get rid of them all who behaved in such a fashion. Yesterday's waterloo region record carrys this story titled "Demote G20 sergeant to constable, prosecution to urge discipline hearing".
Tuesday, May 26, 2015
So which is worse, that they make medication errors or that they cover them up? Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys this story titled "College cautions Kitchener doctor ". The doctor involved is the chief of staff for both hospitals, Dr. Sharma. Apparently he was defensive, evasive and vague about the significance of a medication error which occurred prior to an elderly man's death in Grand River Hospital. The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario have cautioned Dr. Sharma about his behaviour. One member however on the three person appeal board wanted the case to go to the college's discipline committee. He (Taivi Lobu) stated "If misleading information about gross medical error was provided by a hospital chief of staff, a caution by the Committee - even one delivered in person- does not reasonably address the impact of such conduct on others involved in health care delivery and the erosion of public trust in the profession.". Mr. Lobu also added that"...the role of the medication error in the patient's death would likely have not been recognized without the "exceptionally perseverant measures" of the family.".
Friday, May 22, 2015
Woolwich Township is part of the Region of Waterloo in southern Ontario. While a beautiful northern corner of the Region; it's politics are to say at the least parochial. At the most it's Family Compact time as in the old Upper Canada in the early 1800s when a very small group ruled for their personal benefit as well as for the purpose of keeping the unwashed masses at bay. Half of the six person Council are related at least (S. Shantz, M.Bauman & L.Shantz) and combined with that and identical church connections it is quite weird. Add in Councillor Martin who sides with them and who could blame the minority local wasps for at least thinking the dreaded "Mennonite Mafia". Of course many others don't approve of that term but they're not looking so here goes.
Apparently it's become routine in Toronto for municipal politicians to make light of the various provisions of the Municipal Elections Act 1996. That said many have been audited and several removed from office for failing to file any expense return at all. The same thing happened in Sudbury less than two months ago. In each instance the Municipal Clerk has stepped up and done as the Election Act stipulates which is to immediately remove the offender from office in the case of a total failure to file expense reports.
Not so here in Woolwich Township. Seems that they like to write their own rules and regulations and Mark being literally family and such a swell guy overall; clearly the provincial Elections Act forfeiture of office can't apply to him. That's where we stand today. I expect there will be some response from the province on this. Why Woolwich would take this bizarre position and knowingly court condemnation from the province and the courts is concerning. I don't see this ending well. Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys this story titled "Woolwich won't remove Bauman".
Thursday, May 21, 2015
It seems to be all about usurping authority. Whenever possible and at whatever level whether municipal, regional, provincial or federal it's all about politicians and bureaucrats making decisions that they have no authority or jurisdiction to so make. Whether Chairs of committees of Council trying to remove members without authority or municipal clerks reinterpreting provincial legislation to suit their wishes; it makes a mockery of our laws.
Ciurrently Woolwich Council are trying to stickhandle around both the Terms of Reference for the Chemtura Public Advisory Committee as well as the Woolwich Township Procedural By-Laws. Their purpose is clearly contrary to the public interest. They want to both change the membership of the committee as well as change the format totally to fulfill the wishes of both Chemtura Canada Inc. in Elmira, Ontario and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. That pair have effectively covered up each others culpability and liability over the last twenty-five years regarding the vast environmental damage done to both aquifers amd surface water bodies.
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys this Opinion article by Luisa D"Amato titled "Cancelled EQAO tests a loss of very valuable information". The timing by the teachers is certainly interesting. The first group of Ontario children to have the full effect of all day kindergarten are now in Grade 3 ready and waiting for their Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) testing. These results would certainly be valuable input into whether or not the very expensive idea of full day kindergarten is worthwhile or not. Of course the elementary teachers and their unions have decided that this where they'd most like to work to rule. Hence this grand experiment which some critics have pointed out was a welcome boost to the teachers' employment at the expense once again of all the rest of us; simply will not be validated or otherwise this time around as expected.
Monday, May 18, 2015
The Executive Director of this new organization is Dr. Katie Gibbs of the University of Ottawa. She also helped organize the "Death of Evidence" protest in Ottawa in July 2012. Thousands of scientists and their supporters chanted "No science, no evidence, no truth, no democracy"as they carried a symbolic coffin to the steps of Parliament Hill. Evidence for Democracy advocates for the transparent use of evidence in government decision making and public policy development. The Harper Conservative government has ben cutting funding to various research facilities as well as muzzling of scientists to prevent them from speaking to the media.
It is informed decision making that is a fundamental part of democracy. Psuedo science and self interest science should have no part of government decision making. Dr. Gibbs also sees Evidence for democracy as an important bridge between scientista and the public.
Friday, May 15, 2015
I think hind sight being 20/20 it is easy to suggest that the Municipal Election Act has not been given the attention and respect it deserves. Currently Councillor Scott Hahn in Woolwich Township (Region of Waterloo) is learning firsthand that he should have paid much more attention to flash drives, paperwork and seminars provided prior to the election.
I've been delving into some of the intricacies of this legislation and am frankly shocked by the details and specifics. For example Councillor Hahn is currently at the Auditor stage and it would be difficult to believe that the Auditor's Report won't be harsh in regards to his paperwork failures. The Councillor's original expense report listed approximately $258 in expenses whereas after the second public meeting of the Audit Committee he is at $3,200 and counting. It is especially likely that the Auditor will be unimpressed with last minute invoice/receipts that were produced suggesting that an overpayment by the Councillor's father on a company cheque was remedied a couple of weeks later via three individuals splitting the bill into legal sized portions ie. each contribution under $750.
When this Auditor's report is delivered to the Township Clerk and the Audit Committee it will be important for members of the public to advise the Committee that Woolwich is not Dogpatch. Woolwich must not permit themselves to lessen the magnitude of the consequences of ignoring the rules in place regarding campaign expenses. Woolwich needs to step up and make it clear that they will not turn a blind eye to infractions regarding election rules.
Thursday, May 14, 2015
Apparently that's exactly what they are doing according to the following April 30/15 article in the Waterloo Region Record titled "Province went cheap on winter roads". The Auditor General stated "Ontario saved money on the winter maintenance of provincial highways over the last five years, but at a cost that included greater delays in clearing highways so that they were safe to drive during and after a storm.". The average clearing time prior to 2009 was 2.1 hours but that average has increased to 4.7 hours by 2013-2014. Apparently some of the contracts for snow clearance actually went to contractors who didn't have the required equipment in order to fulfill their contracts. There was greater emphasis on the lowest bidder versus on the ability to do the job properly and quickly. I guess all the Liberal financial scandals and blunders have to be made up somehow.
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
So apparently yelling obscenities at a female reporter is worthy of firing of an engineer at Hydro whereas unlawfully arresting, confining and beating an innocent man by police is not. What a asinine country we live in. In Toronto a Sudanese refugee was awarded $27,000 by Ontario Superior Court Justice Frederick Myers. Todays Waterloo Region Record carrys the story titled "Refugee gets $27G in carding lawsuit". The refugee, Mutaz Elmardy, was stopped, arrested, punched in the face twice and then left handcuffed outdoors for 25 minutes by Constable Andrew Pak of the Toronto Police. Well I guess Toronto Police are so used to killing suspects that a mere beating and illegal arrest doesn't really upset them.
Interestingly a probe by OIPRD (Office of the Independent Police Review Director) allegedly found no fault by the officer. To say that something, somewhere is rotten in the state of Denmark, is putting it mildly. Justice Myers stated "One who is not being investigated for criminality is allowed to walk down the street on a cold night with his or her hands in the pockets and tell inquisitive police officers to get lost without being detained, searched, exposed to sub-zero tempuratures or assaulted.".
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
Amid scandal after scandal involving police officers and blacks, it is difficult for one more death to stand out, but this one does. Freddie Gray should never have been arrested in the first place, much less handcuffed, feet shackled and placed headfirst into the back of a police van. Apparently ten years ago another man died in similar circumstances and police protocol was clear in that he should have been strapped down with a seatbelt to prevent his repeatedly striking the inside of the van as it moved. The May 2/15 Waterloo Region Record carrys the story titled "Six officers facing criminal charges". Being black in America in 2015 should not be like this. Being black in America should not have been like that 100 years ago.
Monday, May 11, 2015
This apparently is a first for Waterloo Region and only a few such audits have ever been done throughout Ontario. Councillor Scott Hahn of Woolwich Township (Elmira & rural areas etc.) screwed up his election expenses report incredibly. Currently his amended election expenses are in the neighbourhood of $3,000 and climbing whereas his original report stated a lowly and ridiculous $280. There have been two hearing dates so far and today MECAC recommended sending the file on to an Auditor to get a professional opinion. After the Auditor makes his determination by carefully examining the law and the receipts and invoices etc. he will report back to MECAC. They must then decide in an open forum whether or not to send the file to a prosecuter to determine if criminal charges are appropriate.
At this point in time the decision to send it to an Auditor was a black & white decision. There are way too many anomolies and errors in the paperwork not to get a professional opinion. It may end up being a case of whether the family who eventually paid for the Councillor's expenses are willing to testify under oath as to things like the timing of receipts, invoices, intent etc.. Is it possible that there was no criminal intent however some last minute bad and desperate decisions were made?
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Last Wednesday's Waterloo Region Record carrys this Queen's Park column by Martin Regg Cohn titled "Students idle while union leaders play games". A deal was struck in the recent past such that wages and key elements were to be negotiated at the provincial level leaving local disagreements to be hashed out with regional school boards. At the provincial level the province, in this case truthfully so, are advising the Teachers' unions that they have no money for more raises. Hence the unions are already upset and in retaliation are inventing "issues" at the local board level. Specific local job actions were mapped out a while back. They are "...not about grievances, it's about gotcha. These are picket lines without a purpose, staffed by teachers without a cause.". For far too long these irresponsible teachers unions have held students and parents hostage while the provincial government has treated them like royalty.
Friday, May 8, 2015
Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carried this story titled "Omar Khadr rejects "terrorism nonsense"". Mr. Khadr has finally been released on bail albeit with strict conditions. Nevertheless having been a prisoner for the past thirteen years it must seem sureal. As a fifteen year old child he was seriously wounded in a U.S. attack upon a compound that his father had left him at. Since then he spent a decade at Guantaunamo and then at two different Canadian prisons.
It is to the everlasting shame of our federal Conservative government that they have done nothing but heap coals upon a Canadian minor embroiled by his father in a foreign shooting war. Even this latest sucessful plea to the courts for bail was opposed by the Canadian government. The hypocrisy is quite spectacular. While Canada has had an incredibly open and welcoming immigration policy for decades it seems as if some immigrants are more welcome than others. Omar Khadr is not the first Canadian citizen to learn the hard way that our federal government will cheeerfully throw certain Canadian citizens to the wolves if they see political advantage to it.
Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Well probably more of the second than the first. Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carried Luisa D'Amato's story titled "Suspension for student's tweet was a heavy handed response". Apparently the teacher's at Waterloo Oxford School didn't appreciate the joke. They got upset. Boo hoo. Luisa is really pushing the free speech angle. The student involved fibbed, perhaps for fun, perhaps for malice. Regardless, all things considered, yes the three day suspension is over the top. Perhaps if the teachers weren't striking so regularily everybody including the teachers would have known it was a joke. This school board would be our very own waterloo region district School Board. They used to be staffed at the top with lying jerks. Are they still after all these years?
Monday, May 4, 2015
The Saturday May 2, 2015 Waterloo Region Record carrys this article titled "Man wrongly jailed 27 years has the right to sue, top court rules". Ivan Henry was wrongfully convicted in 1983 of rape and indecent assault against eight women in Vancouver. In 2010 the B.C. Court of Appeal declared prosecuters had not fully disclosed evidence. He has since sued police, Crown and the City of Vancouver for witholding material that could have helped his case. The Supreme Court of Canada has recently ruled that he can sue prosecuters for their actions in not properly disclosing evidence. It is likely that a seven figure settlement will eventually occur. That said he has lost forever twent-seven years of his life while tagged with the abhorrwent and false sex convictions.