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.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

ONTARIO POLICE FORCES ARE OUT OF CONTROL



Do not misunderstand me. I am not referring to the fine men and women in uniform whose attitude day in and day out is to serve and protect. I am referring to the administration and control of Ontario police forces by their Chiefs and senior administration officers. They have totally lost control when criminal actions by bad apples within their services are treated differently than criminal actions by members of the public.

Lawyer Julian Falconer, representing the teen victim and his family, stated "This represented in my opinion, a deliberate and intentional effort on the part of police authorities to conceal a crime by one of their own.". It appears that the black teen was walking with two friends in their own neighbourhood last December when confronted by an off-duty police officer and his brother. The teen was attacked and allegedly beaten with a metal pipe. His injuries are severe including loss of an eye and multiple broken bones.

The Special Investigations Unit wasn't notified which is supposed to be mandatory when there are serious injuries and or allegations of sexual assault by a police officer. Durham Police investigated and didn't even interview witnesses to the assault.

Now our very own Waterloo Regional Police are involved as they have been asked to investigate the assault on the black teenager.

A coalition of community and advocacy groups has stated that "The end result is a lack of confidence in the very public institutions that were created to keep us safe.'. Ontario's Attorney General stated that change is necessary to improve public trust in law enforcement. A thorough house cleaning is long overdue at the top if they are unwilling to rid their forces of occasional bad apples. It is beyond hypocritical if well liked and or connected officers keep their jobs after committing criminal offences while other less popular officers are drummed out of police forces using internal Police Act charges. This kind of internal discrimination and favouritism harms both the police force and the public and can no longer be tolerated.

The article describing this situation was in the Waterloo Region Record last Thursday titled "Agency asked to probe two police forces after officer charged in teen's beating".

Friday, August 18, 2017

GENDER DISCRIMINATION & HARASSMENT CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT AGAINST WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE



Whu should this remotely be a surprise to anyone? The City of Waterloo went through something similar in the mid 90s. Yours truly along with a couple of other employees went to the Ontario Human Rights Commission in regards to the City of Waterloo's harassment and discrimination against female public works employees. The Commission took forever however when they were finally ready to go I received a phone call from the CAO of the City of Waterloo. He wanted to settle including a written apology and some back wages. I accepted. The female employee had been settled with long before.

So here we have yet another male dominated and longterm historically male occupation only. However decades ago our governments decided that women were quite capable of doing lots of formerly male only occupations. Factory work for women didn't really start until the Second World War when there was a shortage of men for the factories. Doctors, fire women, construction workers and police officers became open to both genders. Just as there are lots of men who would make poor police officers or construction workers similarly there are many women who would do poorly however many others, if given even half a chance, can succeed in these occupations.

Of course it's all too much of a shock for the hurt feelings of many rank and file as well as of many senior police officers. They go through the motions and give lip service support only to their female colleagues. Basically they sneak around doing their best to undermine and harass them into quitting. It has worked in that many women throw uop their hands and say to hell with the pack of you. They are there to work and to have a career not be punching bags for the well entrenched old boys club.

And this is why we are where we are today. Waterloo Regional Police have been far too long spending way too much taxpayers time and money pursuing that which has gone the way of the dodo. Women are in the work force and our society is the better for it. The Waterloo region Record article about this is dated August 16, 2017 and the title of the article is "Hearing on police class-action suit in September".

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

SHOULD MORE POLITICIANS BE DOING QUALITY JAIL TIME?



The answer is absolutely yes. Despite the fact that there is still no law either federal or provincial stating that politicians are not forbidden to lie; there are still ample reasons to send them to jail. Let's see gross negligence is a very good reason. The Flint Michigan disaster whereby young children were drinking lead contaminated tap water comes to mind. Some of those children will have permanently lowered brain function due to the lead ingested while both local and state politicians looked for cheaper, less safe sources of water. Here in Elmira, Ontario the politicians who knew that Uniroyal's chemicals including NDMA were in the groundwater for years prior to its' "discovery" in 1989 should have spent considerable time behind bars. Similarly the upcoming methane crisis from the Bolender Landfill in Elmira hopefully to date has not caused death or injury although all the evidence is not yet in. There have been a number of fires and personal injuries including death under somewhat strange circumstances at a business located beside the former Landfill. Woolwich Township staff and politicians appear to have been negligent in their handling of reports received from their consultants over a thirty plus year time period. Even when their consultants have advised action it has never had any sense of urgency or timeliness involved.

Friday, August 11, 2017

ARE ALL THE SCHOOL BOARDS HOPELESS?



Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys the following story titled "School boards can learn from "crisis"". It seems that the start of school year last September was even more eventful than usual across Toronto. The Ombudsman, Paul Dube, released a report yesterday on the mess in Toronto last September. It seems as if thousands of students were stranded and some even went missing when bus drivers en masse dropped young children off at the wrong stops. This included junior kindergarten students as well as those with special needs. Many parents were left with missing children for several hours.

According to the Ombudsman there were warning signs well ahead of the start of school indicating that new bus operators combined with new or different bus drivers had no idea where their routes were. It was a mess. The Ombudsman has suggested that this crisis could have been averted and hopes that other boards besides Toronto's two baords have taken note and gotten their acts together.

It certainly puts in context for me the dysfunction and incompetence of school boards who just love to blame parents for any educational flaws rather than looking at themselves. Low graduation rates and declining math scores on provincial tests may simply be the tip of the iceberg. Politics and politicians seem intent on buggering up just about anything they can get their hands on including partisan trustees and promoting the flavour of the month edubabble from bureaucrats and their educational consultants. These are not smart people at the top of school boards. They are manipulators and deceivers with too much status, money and power and too little real accountability or transparency.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

CROWN & POLICE BREAK THE LAW IN ALBERTA



In Drumheller, Alberta a local politician got into trouble over her strong and rude comments on Facebook about two of her colleagues on local Council. The police showed up, charged and arrested her and put her in jail. The charge was a criminal charge namely Defamatory Libel, punishable by up to two years in prison. Realizing that she was facing a criminal record and a prison sentence she agreed to conditions which were backed up by a provincial court order.

Now here's the kicker. Section 301 of the Criminal Code regarding Defamatory Libel had been repealed twenty years earlier in Alberta as being unconstitutional. It has also been repealed in Ontario, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland, Labrador and New Brunswick. Section 301 had never been taken to the Supreme Court of Canada for them to determine its' constitutionality which is why the many provinces and territory have done so.

All of this begs the question as to how the police and Crown in Alberta allegedly didn't know that the law was unconstitutional. The author of this story Derek James, offered this comment: "This means that the Crown will still occasionally bring charges under Section 301- although only ever to shield public officials like politicians and police from criticism, never average private citizens.". This story was in the Waterloo Region Record on June 9, 2017 titled "Defamation law used to silence political speech?".

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

DO POLICE BULLIES CONTINUE UNTIL THEY"RE STOPPED?



Police brutality. It's never really stopped. Maybe it's no longer Standard Operating Procedure as it once was in some areas but nevertheless it continues at the very least on an individual basis by individual officers. The August 1, 2017 Waterloo Region Record published a story titled "Man assaulted by officer gets charge dropped". Judge Joseph Bovard stated in court that an assault by Officer Gill constituted a very serious breach of the suspect's rights and as a result the evidence against the suspect was thrown out. The Judge also commented negatively on the behaviour and conduct of the officer and his colleagues in court. The charge was related to drinking and driving and the police officer's illegal behaviour towards the suspect resulted in no evidence being available to the Crown. My question is besides the suspect walking is there any consequences for the officer? If not, including assault charges, then is it any wonder that this behaviour continues by some police offciers?

Saturday, August 5, 2017

STRONG MESSAGE ABOUT UNLAWFUL CONDUCT SENT TO WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE



James Lockyer, the lawyer for the biker improperly and illegally convicted on weapons charges, has stated that The Ontario Court of Appeal has sent both Waterloo Regional Police and other forces across Canada a "strong message". The message is that the courts will not tolerate either unconstitutional or illegal conduct by police forces. Waterloo Regional Police played fast and loose in searching private property without a warrant and then misled a judge into giving them a warrant for a second search. After that they back a third time and while they found weapons and other illegal goods all three searches were thrown out as evidence based upon the first illegal search and the followup lack of candor in obtaining a belated search warrant. This article titled "Freed biker's lawyer blast police" was published in yesterday's Waterloo Region Record.

Mr. Lockyer made it clear that the Constitution protects ALL Canadians from improper searches and seizure. Waterloo Region Crown Attorney Mark Poland stated that they are reviewing the matter in order to determine their next steps. An Application for Leave to Appeal could be sent to the Supreme Court of Canada although only 10% of those leaves to Appeal are successful. This is at least the third major black eye for our local police force this summer. At what point in time will an independent inquiry or investigation be called to look into our local forces internal problems and administration at the top levels?

Thursday, August 3, 2017

IMAGINE THAT: OUR SENIOR WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE LIED & BROKE THE LAW



The Ontario Court of Appeal is not amused by the behaviour of a senior investigating officer and his team. The Court indicated that Waterloo regional Police engaged in "systemic" misconduct in regards to a case that sent a Kitchener man to jail for eleven years. The title of the article in today's Waterloo Region Record is "Regional police, Kitchener judge erred in case that sent a Hells Angel to jail, court rules".

All convictions against Frank Strauss were overturned and the Appeal Court has ordered a new trial. He had been convicted based upon evidence from a second search of his property with a search warrant. The very first search had been conducted with no legal grounds whatsoever and hence no search warrant.

One would think by now that our Regional Police would have learned not to take short cuts when dealing with our local biker gang. Way back in the 70s they pulled similar stunts and worse which ended up with officers being demoted and Sid Brown the Chief being fired, albeit somewhat prematurely. That legal case went on for years and it gave police, police board and politicians all a black eye for a very long time.

Monday, July 31, 2017

ALLEGATIONS OF CRIMINAL WRONGDOING



Will it take some form of provincial or federal Inquiry into systemic police misconduct across Canada or can the responsible authorities do the job themselves? It would seem that according to the allegations with included evidence provided by Kelly Donovan that it is unlikely that the local Crown Prosecutors are up to the job. Instances of favouritism and discrimination in the laying of criminal charges are alleged. These instances swing both ways with guilty parties given a pass as well as frivolous charges laid against officers simply to harass them. While these cases require close scrutiny by independent authorities, so too do the cases of Police Service Act charges being laid either for harassment or out of outright vindictiveness. All these allegations deserve independent and professional investigation from persons who are not dependent upon the good will of the various police forces..

Saturday, July 29, 2017

CSIS MORE OF THE SAME



When are our authorities (ie. politicians) going to get the lead out and start making police agencies including the RCMP, provincial police and even CSIS transparent and accountable? In the July 15, 2017 Waterloo Region Record there was an article titled "Canada's spy agency faces harassment, discrimination lawsuit". It turns out that while CSIS depends on and relys on Muslim employees at the same time they distrust and discriminate against them. Five emplyees have filed suit against what they describe as an old boys club culture at CSIS.They allege that advancement is based upon personality, internal friendships and not on merit. The discrimination is against not only Muslims but allegedly against homosexuals as well. In the long run this kind of behaviour lessens and weakens police forces whether municipal, provincial or federal and the same thing goes for national intelligence agencies. If their own employees know something is rotten from within how likely are they and their colleagues to perform their duties at their best?

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

SYSTEMIC POLICE HYPOCRISY & COVERUPS



Last Tuesday the Waterloo Region Record carried the following story titled "Ex-officer criticizes police for "bullying". The sub-title in my opinion is a more accurate depiction of Kelly Donovan's 93 page Report. The sub-title was "Kelly Donovan says forces go after those who make internal complaints".

First of all Ms. Donovan's Report does not focus solely on the Waterloo Regional Police of which she was a member until she resigned this past June. She also makes it clear in her Report and via footnotes that her data comes from a number of already published and public sources. Part of her overall theme is that Waterloo Regional Police are not inherently any nastier, more corrupt or of lower ethics than any other forces. The problem is across the board both here in Ontario and across Canada. It is a culture unto itself and whether through inadequate legislation, typical human abuse of authority or public policy dealing with police accountability and transparency; the problem has grown out of control.

The public are paying for far too many internal witch hunts and discipline of police officers who have expressed usually through the chain of command, concerns that need to be addressed. Possibly some complaints might be indeed frivolous but many of those she details are from it. They need to be addressed honestly and forthrightly. Taxpayers should not be paying for so many Police Act charges dealing with mere dissent within the ranks. Taxpayers should not be paying for so many police officers on suspension, often for again either dissent or other trivial matters. Good police officers who are unpopular or who ask too many questions should not be hounded out of our police forces. That is a huge waste of time, talent and training.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

MESSY CUSTODY DISPUTE INVOLVING WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE




Well after last month's class action lawsuit filed against the Waterloo Regional Police, followed by last week's revelations in a 93 page document produced by Kelly Donovan; is it possible for any other local police behaviour to be labelled as weird. Well apparently so. Today's Waterloo Region Record carries an article titled "OPP loses appeal in custody dispute involving Waterloo Region police officer".

Get a load of this: a local police officer is in a nasty custody type dispute with his ex-wife involving their ten year old daughter. He's alleged that she had assaulted their daughter and she's alleged that nine years ago he had assaulted her. Nearly two years ago the father thought that having a couple of his buddies (off-duty cops) along as observers at the access exchange site was a good idea. A local judge disagreed and ordered the OPP to take over as observers and keepers of the peace during these exchanges. The OPP promptly took the matter to the Ontario Court of Appeal. Seems they didn't like the judge's plan.

Well the OPP have just lost and must now assist in these access exchanges. Interesting. I wonder how many other parents, whether father or mother, would like a police escort to help keep things civil during handoffs of their children back and forth. Is there something in the water here in Waterloo Region? Is this even remotely normal behaviour between separated or divorced parents? Is there some systemic problems with the hierarchy of the Waterloo Regional Police that is contributing to the poor behaviour of their front line officers? Could it be simply bad hiring of particular police officers in the first place? Whatever it is the natives are getting restless. I would say that our local force is about one dandy crisis away from the province stepping in and doing a housecleaning.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

INTENTIONAL IMBALANCE OF POWER




Families of people shot by police officers will now receive funding allowing them to hire lawyers for coroner's inquests. Karyn Greenwood-Graham who founded the group Affected Families Of Police Homicides stated that formerly it was an intentional imbalance of power making it difficult for families to be on an equal footing with other parties at inquests including police boards and police officers. The title of the article in the July 15/17 Waterloo Region Record is "Families of those shot by police can get funding".

This funding is one of the recommendations in the review of Ontario's police oversight bodies by Justice Michael Tulloch, made public last April. The inquest into the death of Michael MacIsaac, shot by officer Brian Taylor, is set to start in Toronto a few days ago. The vast majority of police related deaths in Ontario do not result in criminal charges. Critics point out that this is due to the fact that Crown Attorneys rely on charges being laid by police in which they then prosecute based upon investigations done by police.

Friday, July 21, 2017

OTTAWA POLICE LOOKING STUPIDER & MORE VINDICTIVE BY THE MINUTE




Last Tuesday's Waterloo Region Record carries the following story titled "$254K award in wrongful arrest". It seems as if the Ottawa police force certainly have some bad apples in spades on their force. The weirdest part in an accompanying story is a quote from the woman's lawyer who was abused in this case in August 2008. He pointed out that despite the court award of $254,000 to his client the officers involved were not charged with any police act or criminal offences. As he said it certainly speaks volumes as to the internal investigation done by the Ottawa police. Shame on them.

Roxanne Carr had two bones broken in her wrist during and after a wrongful arrest for trespassing. She gad every right to be at the location where she was arrested and the police had neither the right to arrest her nor to assault her twice afterwards. Furthermore stripping and leaving her naked in a jail cell for two hours is plain and simple an intentional and vindictive attempt to humiliate her. Could it be that during the wrongful arrest and two assaults that she wasn't compliant enough or subservient enough to suit Constable Michael Adlard? Poor baby did she maybe tell his tiny ego off at some point during his illegal behaviour?

Bottom line why wasn't that officer and others involved charged criminally? Why are they still police officers? After the exposure of police forces use of Police Service Act charges to vindictively charge officers whose only behaviour is criticizing or alleging bad behaviour within the force; why were they not used in this case of gratuitous force and violence against a woman who was innocent of wrongdoing? Further shame on our police forces who behave in such a fashion.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

KELLY DONOVAN LATEST WHISTLEBLOWER - WRPS NOT AMUSED




Two days ago I posted here with a link to Kelly Donovan's 93 page report titled "Report Of Systemic Misfeasance In Ontario Policing And The Coordinated Suppression Of Whistleblowers``. Her report quite frankly is staggering and I`ve been keeping track locally for the last several years regarding all the time, trouble and expense involved at our local force eating up our tax dollars. Turns out the cesspool is much worse than I had imagined.

One of the key words in Ms. Donovan`s title is ``Systemic``. It is not just here in Waterloo Region and it`s not just here in Ontario. Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax and Montreal are also included in her report. Besides municipal police forces she has also included The Ontario Provincial Police and the RCMP. Certainly the RCMP no longer are good company to be in and anyone who still thinks otherwise certainly hasn`t been paying attention over the last decade plus.

I too have figured out that a huge part of the problem is our local Police Service Board. This is here at least a bunch of retired regional and municipal politicians put out to pasture. There are other equally unqualified individuals involved and Ms. Donovan has strongly suggested that training needs to be mandatory for anyone stepping into a Police Service Board position. Right now I believe that the qualifications are that you are a good old boy or girl who can be counted on to attend meetings, collect your pay and NOT ever rock the boat.

Yours truly applied this past spring for an opening on the P S Board and as expected didn`t even get an interview from Kenny and the boys and girls on Council. The older I get the more I understand the inherent complacency and incompetence of our local politicians. With corruption defined as `riddled with errors`; I have no problem believing that the majority of our regional (& some municipal) politicians are corrupt.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

PROVINCIAL GAMESMANSHIP AROUND INQUESTS BEING CURTAILED



Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following story titled ``Families of those shot by police can get funding``. Inquests are often mandatory after police shootings in this province. Unfortunately in the past when the family of a police shooting victim were granted standing at the inquest, they either had to hire their own lawyer or go without one. This put them at a serious disadvantage to both police officers and others attending the inquest whose legal expenses and representation were paid for by the taxpayers.

While the issue for many is preventing and or greatly reducing the use of lethal force especially against citizens with mental health issues, families still need to be on a level playing field whether or not their family member was suffering from mental illness. Police shootings of civilians are far too frequent whether or not the citizens involved are knowingly involved in criminal behaviour. Essentially our police are not supposed to be judge, jury and executioner. Death sentences even in the United States are supposed to be reserved for the absolute worst criminal cases. Police need to be given both the tools and the training to ensure that lethal force is absolutely only used as a last resort to protect either police lives or other citizens`lives.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

JUSTICE IS BLIND MAYBE, BUT IT MOST CERTAINLY IS SLOW




Today's Waterloo Region Record carries a wonderful cartoon showing a blindfolded Madame Justice, unfortunately shaped like a bottle of molasses and she is holding a calendar open at the month of January. I think you get it. Meanwhile in the Record five days ago we also have a small article titled "Speeding up the justice system". Ontario's Ontario General has advised The Canadian Press that the "Jordan" decision by the Supreme Court is a gamechanger. All courts in canada must speed up and certainly Ontario courts are hiring more judges, assisatnt Crown Attorneys and other staff. This is merely years or possibly even decades overdue. Expanded bail provisions and other improvements will also take place.

Monday, July 10, 2017

CANADIAN AUTHORITIES SCREWED UP BIG TIME



Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following article by Thomas Walkom titled "Ottawa went too far in terror war". Canadian governments both liberal and Conservative treated a Canadian citizen shamefully. Allegedly during a battle with American SOLDIERS in Afghanistan, when he was fifteen years old, he threw a grenade after being wounded multiple times including permanent eye and shoulder injuries. He was not charged with an attack upon civilians but rather for retaliating against armed American soldiers attacking himself and his friends and relatives. In what universe do soldiers in uniform have the right to sue opposing combatants for either war crimes or injuries received whether mortal or otherwise?

Khadr was a child soldier under the influence of his father his entire young life. He paid an awful price for his poor choice of parent including the aforementioned nearly fatal wounds combined with ten years incarceration in a hellhole called Guantanamo. That was not an easy ten years. That attacking soldiers can either sue him or incarcerate him while a minor for a decade violates international law. Canadian authorities interrogating him after he was captured and suffering intentional sleep deprivation from his captors is repulsive. That they would then share whatever information they'd received with his captors is shameful and has besmirched Canadian government behaviour forever.

This is not the first case of Canadian authorities throwing their own citizens to the wolves but it is one of the most egregious. Mahar Arar and many others come to mind. Apparently Canadian governments like to preach that they are not racist and welcome everyone. Not quite so if the people involved are a different skin colour, religion or are enemies of the United States.

Friday, July 7, 2017

OMAR KHADR



Today's Waterloo Region Record has an Opinion article by Luisa D'Amato that is very interesting. It is titled "If child soldier Khadr is to be seen as a victim, so should Oberlander". I'm not sure that I agree exactly with Luisa's thoughts on the matter. I believe that Oberlander certainly should be allowed to retain his Canadian citizenship and live the rest of his days here in Canada however I'm not so sure that it's for the same reasons or logic as Luisa.

Khadr is being compensated and apologized to because his rights as a Canadian citizen were grotesquely violated and abused by the Canadian government. While legally a child and Canadian citizen he was imprisoned , abused and interrogated by both the Americans and by Canadian authorities. Nothing can ever excuse Canada's complicity in that behaviour and violation of his rights as a Canadian citizen. For that alone Canada owes him compensation and an apology.

Helmiut Oberlander is an entirely different case with entirely different circumstances. If Canada decides to make people citizens of this country then they are first class citizens not second or third class with fewer rights and protections.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

TAXPAYERS LIKE SOLDIERS ARE MERE CANNON FODDER FOR THE ELITES



Whether by blood, inheritance, money or whatever every country has a ruling elite. It matters not a whit if the country is a monarchy, democracy or a dictatorship. Those in power have a group around them who represent real money and power. These elites primarily make their money by legalized schemes of thievery from the masses. Real estate, development, manufacturing, lotteries it's all about grossly overcharging for your "products" while externalizing your costs as much as possible. This includes free waste disposal whether into the air, the soil, groundwater or surface water. In fact to this day provincial Ministry's of the Environment are all about receptors ie. those harmed by polluters. If you are off the beaten track you can count on dilution of your waste products and nobody is likely going to sue on behalf of the local critters. Even if they do as long as you've been doing it long enough and saving your money our ju$tice system will reward their own. Our society and all societys are biased in favour of money. Everything else is window dressing.

The groundwater contaminant plume in Cambridge, Ontario (Bishop St. community) is of historic proportions. All levels of government have gotten together and convinced the media that it's no big deal. With so many cancer illnesses and deaths who's going to prove the human devastation in Cambridge? Certainly not the Regional Health Dep't. and certainly not the Ontario Ministry of Environment. The smaller they can make the crisis appear the less stupid they appear. If they'd been doing their job, Northstar and G.E./Rozell would have been stopped in their tracks. It didn't happen until massive human damage had been done.

Same thing in Grassy Narrows in northern Ontario and same thing in Elmira, Ontario with Uniroyal Chemical. Same thing with G.E. in Peterborough. And our governments continue to protect the guilty, oops the wealthy and influential. Nothing changes.

Friday, June 30, 2017

POLITICIANS PREFER TO CONTROL THE INFORMATION & MINIMIZE THE CRISIS



This of course goes double when the politicians involved are the ones who've either instigated the crisis through their bad decisions or who have known about the problem for years and just kept on sweeping it under the rug. This seems to be the case in Woolwich Township yet again. The North Woolwich Landfill has had contaminant plumes associated with it at least since the 1980s. These plumes unsurprisingly consist of both chlorinated and unchlorinated solvents. A few years ago they were beginning to pop up in drilled wells south of the landfill located on Seiling Drive in Woolwich Township. I don't know if the road is named after our esteemed regional Chairman but I certainly hope so.

Meanwhile it turns out here in town (Elmira) we have methane issues. They have sort of been studied to death although in my opinion not very professionally. Nor in my opinion has Woolwich township remotely acted in an appropriate fashion. This includes their overlooking two sets of nearby neighbours who absolutely need to be informed as to the potential problems. The studies have been overwhelmingly focused on but one of four possibly affected areas. Not only have the majority of neighbours been given short shrift in the studies but they most importantly don't seem to have even been informed that there is a problem nearby. A potentially serious environmental problem that fortunately rarely causes explosions but it can. This is Elmira and if it can go wrong we've got the right people on the ground to ensure that it does. The ongoing "water crisis" has been bad enough. We don't need a methane crisis but as it's here let's deal with it properly including communicating with affected neighbours.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

PUBLIC INQUIRY INTO SENIORS MURDERS UNLIKELY




Last Tuesday's Waterloo Region Record carried the following story titled "Victims' families speak of pain, anger". The very last sentence stated "Shortly after Wettlaufer's sentencing hearing, the province announced it would hold a public inquiry into the murders to ensure a similar tragedy does not happen again.". Really? Why am I so skeptical? We are talking seniors with either physical or mental health problems or even both. We are talking very elderly people who are in a fragile state and whose deaths are not terribly surprising at the time. Let us not forget that neither multiple nursing homes nor our authorities caught up to Elizabeth Wettlaufer. She confessed to the crimes while she herself was in a mental hospital. That's how she got caught.

So the province really want to open the can of worms that is our nursing homes? Ask yourself how Ms. Wettlaufer was let go by nursing homes for medication "errors" and then rehired by other nursing homes. Are they so desperate for staff? Apparently the answer is yes. Is anybody looking at death statistics from all nursing homes? Doubtful. Are autopsy's routinely done for sudden deaths? Apparently not. Ms. Wettlaufer injected patients with insulin and they died suddenly. That insulin should have shown up in their bloodstream and it should have shown up as being missing from inventory. Why wasn't anybody checking inventories more carefully much less sudden unexplained deaths? I'm not holding my breathe that Ontario's most vulnerable will actually receive some benefit from these multiple tragic murders.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

$85 MILLION FOR GRASSY NARROWS



Decades ago $85 million would indeed have been a marvelous sum to clean up the English-Wabigoon river systems courtesy of mercury dumped into them by Reed Paper. Nowadays that sum will certainly be helpful but I wonder how far it will go. I also wonder if the whole $85 million will still be available after the next provincial election, whether or not the Liberals win. Why do I expect that the whole belated cleanup is mostly one more desperate attempt to get the Liberals re-elected?

Today's Waterloo Region Record advises us that Glen Murray our Environment Minister views the past fifty years as being a period of "gross neglect". he also suggests that the lack of cleanup was due to both racism and colonialism. he is right on both counts. Seems we extend citizenship in this country to both newcomers and those that were here before us, albeit it is second class citizenship. Canada is second to none when it comes to hypocrisy. Yes well done that this provincial government at least appears to give a damn about Ontario and Canadian citizens victimized by corporate negligence combined with governmental negligence.

Monday, June 26, 2017

MORE ON THE DAMAGE OUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM INFLICTS ON FAMILIES



Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following Letter To The Editor written by Barrie Lillie of Kids"n" Dad Shared Support. He is commenting on a recent article in the Record about Justice Grant Campbell apologizing to the parents of a child seized by the state. Mr. Lillie indicates that the indictment of one particular lawyer is actually an indictment of the judicial system. Both lawyers and judges have remained silent through decades of abuse, incompetence and negligence by various parties in the courts. As Mr. Lillie states how can ethical lawyers "maintain a deafening silence even in the most egregious of cases" ? This silence from those working in our court system enables destructive outcomes for families. Mr. Lillie's final comment is "It remains unclear if the best interests of the family is at the forefront of the legal community". I would suggest that it is not.

Friday, June 23, 2017

MORE WRPS SELF-DESTRUCTION



Today's Waterloo Region Record carries this story titled "Officer facing assault charges arrested". Now these charges were laid last January however the Waterloo Regional Police officer was arrested by London police in February for breaching court orders. Similarly these latest charges are due to an alleged breach of court orders stemming from the initial charges in January. All this is very interesting as various public interest groups over the years have indicated that often times court orders and conditions are onerous, ridiculous and essentially penalizing the charged person prior to any conviction. No details were given in today's Record article so it's difficult to know if these breaches were technical breaches of stupid terms and conditions or if they were something substantive. perhaps it's not just the police who are self-destructing but also the entire so called judicial system itself.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

OF WHAT REAL USE ARE OUR LOCAL GOVERNMENTS?



Well they collect taxes and they spend them. Road repairs, streetlights, snow removal, sewers etc. are all part of their purview. Here in Elmira, Ontario they have responsibility for water distribution and share responsibility for water quality within their distribution system. The Regional government are responsible for initial water quality after treatment and into the various distribution systems around Waterloo Region. Municipal governments are involved with sampling within their systems for bacterial contamination (ie. coliforms & E.Coli). That said Woolwich Township were just as asleep at the switch as was regional government and even more so the Ontario Ministry of Environment. It is my belief and understanding that many citizens died prematurely from cancer and other diseases from long contaminated drinking water prior to the "discovery" of NDMA in the water in 1989.

Methane generation and movement through the subsurface is a long known phenomenon of municipal landfills. Methane just like Volatile Organic Chemicals (VOCs) can intrude into homes through basements via a process known as vapour intrusion. In Cambridge, Ontario hundreds of individuals were exposed to Trichloroethylene (TCE), chromium and Trichloroethane (TCA) in the Bishop St. community of Preston. Here in Elmira we may have a similar problem. Technical reports by so called experts cautioned Woolwich Township to consider an indoor air monitoring program beside an old closed landfill. To date there has been no confirmation that any such program ever occurred.

While the issue with VOCs is toxic poisoning, the issue with methane is explosions. They are rare but they do happen. There is if you will a sweet spot whereby if the methane is above the LEL (lower explosive limit) and below the UEL (upper explosive limit), in the presence of a spark or open flame they can go boom. This open flame needs to be no more than a pilot light for a gas furnace or gas water heater.

Further investigation is underway.

Monday, June 19, 2017

FURTHER SHAME OF OUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM



Today's Waterloo Region Record carrys this article titled "Judge orders Waterloo lawyer to pay $100,000". Justice Grant Campbell of Superior Court in Kitchener has written the following in regards to the court system as well as in regards to Ontario's child welfare system. Firstly he stated that Ontario's child welfare system is broken. He then added that the parents and child "...have been consumed and trampled by the Frankenstein process we have created and allowed to become unmanageable". Justice Campbell then apologized for the manner in which the parents had been treated, ignored, demeaned and disbelieved."

All of this was in regards to the now discredited Motherisk program which in hindsight erroneously tested mothers for drug use. It had several false positives resulting in Children's Aid removing children from their parents improperly and in effect illegally. Compounding these problems was the lawyer for the parents who was negligent in her duties and legal responsibilities towards the child and her parents.

Monday, June 5, 2017

EQAO TESTING. DOES IT HAVE VALUE?



First off I would suggest that the author of the article in today's Waterloo Region Record titled "EQAO testing provides little to no real value" has a huge obstacle to overcome. That obstacle is literally decades of educators, school boards , teachers unions etc. telling us in no uncertain terms as to how professional they are and that children are their first priority. As a parent who has gone through the education wars I know that those comments are puffery wrapped in heavy duty bullcrap. Yes some teachers are indeed professionals in every sense of the word. They stand out from their peers not by awards, higher pay, more job security or greater respect within the educational community. The greater respect within the parental community I would agree with. This is a part of the problem. All their on the job feedback is essentially positive, most especially that coming from their union.

If you listen to their unions, no teacher has ever misbehaved, goofed off or taken self-serving educational shortcuts. Teachers indeed never make mistakes and frankly that just becomes a little too thick. Teachers are human and they have problems and crises in their lives that they need to deal with. Some of these are going to impact their on the job efforts and results. It's the teachers whose on the job efforts and results are routinely poor that have given the rest a bad name.

This opinion by Ken Durkacz a retired educator, seems to be just so much of the same. He claims that EQAO test results don't tell us anything that classroom teachers don't already know. That may well be true but that's not the point. Accountability is necessary in every and all professions and or jobs. Maybe your fellow teachers know that your students are behind everyone else's. Unfortunately they are prevented by union rules and self-preservation not to pass the word around. Included not to pass it around to those in authority. That is what EQAO tests hopefully shine a spotlight on. That is those teachers who consistently are allowing their students to fall behind the norm.

Friday, June 2, 2017

NO SURPRISE AT ALL- WRPS BEING SUED BY WOMEN OFFICERS



Today's Waterloo Region Record front page story is titled "Police face gender-discrimination suit". It seems as if the boys in blue have neither couth nor accountability. It appears as if they've been cheerfully bullying individual female police officers either with the tacit O.K. of senior officers or with the confidence that those same senior officers have a long term case of see no evil, hear no evil when it comes to insisting upon appropriate, decent and legal behaviour within the ranks. This speaks to a top down, systemic attitude and behaviour problem with our Regional Police Form. That is to their shame but is absolutely no surprise to me.

Back in 1990 I worked for a season on a public works crew for the City of Waterloo. We had females working along side of us and the behaviour and attitudes mostly by the male employees in their 40s and 50s were just awful. Most of the younger males were better behaved although the peer pressure to either go along or at worst simply ignore the bad behaviour of the more senior guys was very strong.

What I finally figured out was that these older males were insecure. They had propped up their fragile egos by thinking that they were rough and tough physical specimens doing hard, outdoor construction work. It offended them that girls and women in their early and mid twenties were just as capable or more so than they were at doing all day long, manual, outdoor work.

Now imagine testosterone fueled, possibly steroid enhanced males carrying guns and other weapons and actually dealing with some pretty scary situations. Many of these scary situations might very well be situations that damage the psyche and minds of human beings more often than broken bones and other physical damages. Regardless any insecure, old fashioned or just plain stupid male police officers might resent females on the job with them. If their superiors have the same attitudes and are essentially insulated from both more progressive thinking as well as public accountability; well you can expect the results. Women individually are told that they are incapable and inferior and not wanted on the job. They are treated rudely and disrespectfully, usually individually. Do you think these brave, male officers pull this crap on women unless they either outnumber them or have no witnesses? It is simple out and out bullying. On the street these women could use physical force from pepper spray to batons to simple takedowns and handcuffing of suspects harassing them or others. Imagine if they ever did that at work, off duty. Again these male officers are out and out cowards as are their superiors who look the other way and pretend it's no big deal.

To date these are only allegations in the class action suit filed against our police service. Based upon my personal experience both at the city and in watching our unaccountable local police force; I fully believe them. Some of the stunts the police are alleged to have pulled are similar to those I witnessed at the City of Waterloo. That case went to the Human Rights Commission and while it took far too long it was finally resolved with apologies and back pay in some cases to complainants. Ironically it was a later embarrassed CAO at the City of Waterloo (re: Rim Park) who stepped up and insisted that the City do the right thing.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

NUCLEAR WASTE NEXT TO LAKE HURON?




I mean really, what could possibly go wrong? Do we really trust either our politicians or our federaL or provincial ministries of the Environment? They are not remotely "independent". They work for our respective tiers of government. Our politicians would never lie to us now would they? Right!

Today's article in the Waterloo Region Record is titled "Lake Huron bunker is best: OPG". So who pays the paycheques for senior OPG executives? That's all I need to know to have grave doubts. Allegedly the bedrock near the lake is just dandy. I find it hard to believe that the geology farther from the lake isn't equally good. Yes it may take more time and money but if it lowers the risks to this huge fresh water source it's worth it. This repository is within 1.2 kilometres of Lake Huron. That is way too close. Look elsewhere now.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

LABOUR REFORMS PRIOR TO AN ELECTION: WHAT A SHOCKER



On May 16/17 the Waterloo Region Record carried an opinon/article by Martin Regg Cohn titled "Province plans to boost mimimum wage, sweeping labour reforms". Labour Minister Kevin Flynn is spearheading the legislation after a two year review. Both public hearings and private lobbying have shown the harsh divide between labour and the corporate sectoe. Organized labour want legislation allowing easier unionization of workers whereas business are against higher minimum wages and anything whatsoever boosting unionization. In my mind the Liberals are only willing to risk the corporate anger if they are convinced they can capture mass votes by helping out both part time employees as well as contract workers.

Essentially Ontario's economy has been debased with so many second class workers with low wages, minimal if any benefits, zero job security and little or no ability to know their upcoming work schedules until the last moment. It has been uncaring employers' dreams for just such a scenario for decades.

For me the best part of this article is the very last sentence which goes like this: "He (Flynn) notes that many business owners who demand flexibility to hire and fire part-timers while paying them less admit to personal frustration that their grown children live at home because they can't find steady work.".

Friday, May 26, 2017

ARROGANCE, ENTITLEMENT, INCOMPETENCE, ILL HEALTH OR WORSE?



I'm talking about Superior Court Justice Susanne Goodman. Apparently she is unable or unwilling to carry out her duties properly. The article in today's Waterloo Region Record is titled "Top court blasts judge's conduct, quashes verdict". The verdict was a not guilty one in the case of a man charged with beating and sexually assaulting a woman. Her injuries when police arrived included severe bruising, swelling, numerous cuts and bleeding to her face and head. The victim testified that she had lived with the man and he had been assaulting her over a period of months. He denied the accusations.

The judge acquitted him at the end of the trial and indicated that her written reasons would follow on a certain date. They did not. Over the next six months prosecutors repeatedly asked for them and were told that they would be produced on a certain date. Again they were not. The Appeal Court has overturned the not guilty verdict and ordered a new trial. They have also advised that this situation has occurred previously with this judge and a new trial ordered then as well.

So my first question is this. If the judge had produced as promised written reasons for her decision would that have been the end of it regardless? Regardless of legal considerations, common sense or a just plain appropriate verdict flowing from the evidence presented? So is the issue the lack of written reasons period or is it that she made a really horrible decision that cannot remotely be justified whatever her reasons might be? Finally is it possible that she intentionally sabotaged her not guilty verdict hoping to allow the prosecution a second kick at the can?

My second question is this. If she is incompetent for whatever reason why did it take her failing to produce promised written reasons twice before the Appeal Court are saying no more? Are judges able to produce injustice as long as they follow the proper process? Also while you can have the Crown step up and object to either an allegedly poor decision or process, what happens when the defendant can not afford to hire legal representation for an appeal of an allegedly poor decision? Especially the same thing in civil cases. Here in Waterloo Region we have some horrible judges that frankly aren't fit to judge a dog much less a human being. Where is their accountability?

Thursday, May 25, 2017

FABLED RCMP CONTINUE TO TAKE A S... KICKING



Well it couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of egocentric, self-important bubbleheads. Is it any wonder that our institutions are so totally unaccountable when those in charge (politicians) have spent their careers ensuring that they are non-transparent and unaccountable?

Here's a little list of recent published stories and opinions regarding our Mounties. Waterloo Region Record May 16, 2017 : "Bullying thrives at RCMP: report". May 17, 2017: "RCMP needs civilian managers " and finally today May 25/17: "RCMP sex harassment suit nears settlement".

All three of these tell us far too much concerning the poisoned work environment, disrespect towards women in general and overall stupidity and incompetence by the senior RCMP (male) management. Maybe it's no wonder that we have the likes of a Cambridge Councillor recently described as a man hater.

It's been my overall experience that there are an equal number or percentage of rotten to the core males as females and vice versa. Similarly there are deeply honest and ethical males and females. Believing or describing either gender as all good or all bad is a prescription for disaster. That said I'm going to show my real bias here. It's not fair that 95% of politicians give all the rest a bad name.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A COUPLE OF DECADES MAKE



Twenty years ago everybody still seemed to buy into the all teachers are great professionals nonsense. Nowadays not so much. This latest story isn't going to help them one little bit. Today's Waterloo Region Record has a story titled "Jump in teachers' sick days affecting students, report warns". The sub-title is "Union blames stress levels; boards hit with extra costs".

The problem for teachers and their unions credibility of course is that this jump has been going on since the province removed teachers' ability to bank unused sick days for a cash payout at retirement. Public board high school teachers have the lowest increase in sick days since the change in government policy whereas public board elementary teachers have the highest rate of increase in use of sick days since then.

Almost seems in line with the overall state of union aggressiveness and activism. Or one could hardly be blamed for thinking that the sense of entitlement including taking paid sick days when one is not sick is again reflected with the elementary public board teachers being the most unreasonable. No shock to me. Been there and seen it for myself. Not a pretty picture.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

OUT & OUT POLICE CORRUPTION



Wow! Now this is even beyond blatant. The Halton Police Chief has stated that charges are pending against a uniformed police officer after an investigation into their police drug "vault" is concluded. Apparently 36 drug samples out of 2,185 in lock-up have been tampered with. Clearly the ramifications are huge not only for the accused in all 36 cases but possibly for many more. The whole premise of evidence in police custody is that there is a chain of custody and that evidence simply is not tampered with much less handled by anyone other than those strictly authorized to do so and they must sign for that evidence if they are re-examining it. This is a huge black eye to the professionalism and integrity of this particular police force. The article in today's Waterloo Region Record is titled "Fears over drug vault jolt police, lawyers." However there appears to be a slightly different title and story on-line right now.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

MORE ON SEGREGATION IN ONTARIO JAILS



Howard Sapers has been a spokesperson on behalf of inmates for a very long time. Currently he is Ontario's adviser for corrections reform. He is calling for an end to indefinite segregation of inmates plus with no more than 15 continuous days and no more than 60 days in any given year. Finally it should not be used for protective custody and in fact should only be used rarely or in exceptional circumstances. His concern is the normalization and routine use of isolation or segregation. Allegedly the provincial government will be introducing new legislation in the fall with among other things a clearer definition of segregation. This article was in last Friday's Waterloo Region Record and titkled "Ontario's corrections adviser urges an end to indefinite segregation".

Friday, May 5, 2017

WHAT A SYSTEM!

Fair enough the Judge got it right. The woman was charged with Mischief for giving water to pigs on a truck bound for the slaughterhouse. The Judge found her not guilty. He stated that she had not interfered with anyone's property. Even the Director of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture admitted that the woman's behaviour was well-intentioned although he felt that "it was a matter of protecting food safety."

Today's Waterloo Region Record carried this article titled "Woman who gave water to pigs found not guilty". I would certainly hope so. There was absolutely zero evidence that either she had bad intentions or that the water was dirty or contaminated. Yes she may have been making a point that livestock could and should be treated better at all stages within the food cycle but that is hardly to be discouraged. My question is why did any Crown Attorney ever feel that charges were appropriate? If she had been attempting to adulterate a soon to be foodstuff for human consumption then that would likely be a matter of mischief. As there was no attempt or even serious suggestion that that was her intent, then why bring charges at all? Was this simply a tad of legal harassment going on in order to satisfy the food industry in this province? Even the Judge suggested that these charges actually backfired and that the pork industry have probably taken a black eye over this entire episode.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

LIBEL LAW & COURTS USED TO BLUNDGEON FREE SPEECH & INDIVIDUALS



Just look at Donald Trump. With money and power you can say absolutely whatever you want. Then look at Bob Verdun. Without millions and without powerful friends our libel laws can and are successfully used to hammer honest and courageous citizens. Free speech is absolutely a joke. Today's Waterloo Region Record once again appears to delight in Mr. Verdun's legal difficulties. Lest we forget the person he is supposed to have libeled was in a position of authority with Clarica whom I believe purchased the note (debt) held by MFP Financial. Yes that is the company that everybody seems quite O.K. with slamming for their bait & switch over the Rim Park complex with Waterloo Council way back when. Did Clarica have no knowledge as to how the City of Waterloo got swindled?

Bob Verdun and his newspaper in Elmira (The Independent) were instrumental for decades in keeping Woolwich Township informed. They at considerable expense attended all the Environmental Appeal Board hearings in regards to the Uniroyal Chemical environmental disaster in Elmira, Ontario in late 1989. Bob Verdun is not the only one who views himself as a defender of the public interest. I do as do hundreds to thousands of others who are better informed than the writer of the following article in today's Record, titled "With debts mounting, Verdun declares bankruptcy".

Monday, May 1, 2017

CUTTING COURT BACKLOGS




Last year the Supreme Court of Canada set maximum time periods for various courts around the country to complete cases that have come to trial. The time frame for cases in provincial courts is 18 months and 30 months for trials in Superior Courts. The average time to complete a trial in Ontario (Superior Court) in 2016 was 32.4 months, 2.4 months in excess of the new maximums allowed.

Another proposed change to speed up court cases is the removal of minimum sentences. "The Canadian Bar Association says more cases end up at a trial when offenders believe negotiating a plea would not result in any change in sentence.". These mandatory minimums imposed by the Conservatives when in power have been blamed for clogging up the courts as everyone pleads not guilty in order to avoid the minimum sentence if convicted.

The Waterloo Region Record article was published April 29/17 and titled "Finding ways to cut court backlogs".

Friday, April 28, 2017

DEFIANCE & DISSENT LONG OVERDUE




Yesterday's Woolwich Observer had as usual an excellent opinion ("His View") by Steve Kannon. The title was "Officials intent on removing privacy, civil rights, and we're not helping ourselves". The most frightening part for me was Steve's description of the Newfoundland man who wrote some angry tweets in response to a police shooting two years prior. Police quickly arrested him and had him committed to a psychiatric hospital. Ever think that our police have way too much power and not nearly enough accountability?

As bad as this example was what I saw on Channel 2 last evening was so much worse. A black man (George Toka) in Louisiana was arrested, convicted and sentenced to life in prison without parole primarily for being black, 17 years old and best friends with the victim. The two white persons targeted for an armed robbery by the dead victim and another friend described the shooter who had accidentally shot his co-robber as being black, 5' 10" - 6' tall and around 170 pounds. After their written and signed description they were shown a head shot only of Mr. Toka whom they then "identified". George Toka was 5' 5'' tall and weighed 125 pounds. No matter, without any other evidence whatsoever he was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to life without parole. Recently he has been released from prison after serving thirty years for a crime he did not commit.

Sandy & Woolwich Council take note. This is precisely why citizens should never put up with your lying and making up the rules as they suit you. You won an election. As Donald Trump has shown, any asshole can win an election. In fact it's pretty well guaranteed that one asshole will win at each and every election.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

NO WONDER CITIZENS LACK CONFIDENCE IN OUR POLICE



So quick check. Exactly what further details have been released in regards to the shooting of Maurice Rivard on Ottawa St. early last month? Other than a K-W Record story on March 15/17 advising us that he had been released from Maplehurst (Milton) on bail I've heard exactly nothing. I reported here on the March 15/17 story. As I spent a week's holidays south of the border recently I thought that I might have missed something in the Record. I just did a check on-line and nothing came up except the original couple of stories.

So... He's alive and recovering and the Ontario Special Investigations Unit have been called in. The individual is being charged with trying to disarm a police officer. Interesting. That's it? What crime had he allegedly committed prior to the officer arming himself? Was he the driver that some anonymous? citizen had reported to police half an hour and a few miles away as driving erratically or was he simply in the wrong place at the wrong time?

This incident could have ended tragically as so many others have. Citizens deserve timely information when police shoot citizens. What the hell happened and what the hell is going on here?

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

REHASHING THE LRT SCAM IN WATERLOO REGION



Today's Waterloo Region Record carries an article from Peter Shawn Taylor titled "Is Hamilton's LRT from an alternative universe?". Essentially Mr. Taylor is describing the apparently major difference in attitude and opposition to a massive expenditure on a fixed route mass transit system. Despite Hamilton being less than an hour away by car citizens and politicians there have a significantly different attitude to spending "free" money from either the feds or the province.

Mr. Taylor also gives credit where it is due locally. He gives Regional Chair Ken Seiling "credit" for clever manoeuvering combined with fortuitous timing around the 2010 municipal election. Unfortunately all the regional politicians who claimed to be against a large tax increase locally to help pay for the LRT, just ahead of the 2010 municipal election, managed to make a 180 degree turn in their thinking when after the election they managed to vote in favour of proceeding with the LRT. Unfortunately these regional politicians were not appropriately disciplined at the 2014 municipal election even if it was too late to stop the LRT.

Overall Mr. Taylor clearly was never in favour of our local LRT and probably for very good reasons. Car traffic will be negatively affected, taxes will rise and many businesses have suffered during the extended construction of the rail system. Oh and the route itself from one mall to another seems somewhat bizarre. Finally will the system be well used? Will it be used other than for the initial startup period just to check it out?

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

DIMINISHED LIBERTIES




Well for the first time in years I travelled to the U.S.. By airplane. Oh Lord. I can't tell which bothered me more. The disrespectful, crowded, noisy and slow airports or the security measures now apparently routine. Even the embarking and disembarking from the planes I found distasteful and tedious. What other business treats its' customers so shabbily? Sure I've got an artificial hip but being treated like a probable criminal or terrorist is really too much. Metal detectors, wands, frisks and even gel applied to your hands looking for traces of explosive devices is ridiculous. Remind me again why I spent my hard earned money a year ago for a passport. Wasn't my identity and background checked before they gave me a passport? Doesn't my passport have a picture of me on it?

The worst of all this delay and unnecessary disrespect is that it's unlikely to actually stop any terrorist willing to blow himself or others to smithereens. What I see this eventually doing is discouraging tourist dollars from entering the U.S.. I see it reducing demand on flights other than for business or government purposes. Why would I spend a cent in a country that clearly doesn't want me there?

Monday, April 24, 2017

INTERNET & TELEPHONE VOTING



The provincial and federal governments to date are not interested and have suggested that security is a concern. Hacking is possible although just as likely could be one person voting for all the eligible voters in the home especially if a some of them are unlikely to vote. There is also the possibility of a loss of anonymity when voting either by phone or computer. Those on the receiving end might be able to determine the source of the incoming calls if they were so inclined.

Very recently the City of Cambridge has decided to go ahead with Internet and telephone voting. This is despite Kitchener and Waterloo both not being interested in the practice. Finally Woolwich Township are voting tomorrow evening and if they follow the staff recommendation then it is a done deal. Since when did the dog wag the tail? Apparently it's easier and less work for the staff if they don't have to handle paper ballots.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

OMBUDSMAN'S REPORT ON SEGREGATION/ISOLATION USE



Amazingly there is almost no mention of the reasons why to put inmates into segregation. The usual excuses of for the inmate's own safety or the inmate is violent towards others aren't even mentioned. The only comment is that "...isolation is supposed to be a rare measure of last resort that needs to be justified in each and every case.". Unfortunately that apparently does not occur.

Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carries the following article titled "Ombudsman slams jail segregation use". One of the main concerns in the report is the total lack of proper tracking as to who is and is not in isolation and furthermore how long they've been in isolation. It makes studying the practice and its' abuses nearly impossible when managers and supervisors either don't keep written records or aren't required to send them up the chain of command on a timely basis.

The most recent blatant and egregious case is in regards to an inmate named Adam Capay. Written records indicated he'd been in isolation for 50 days when in fact he'd been in isolation for 1,591 days. I hope that he and or his lawyer sue the province for millions of dollars which among other things will go towards whatever mental health expenditures are required. Isolation can have "...grave and lasting effects on a person's mental state.". This is not the way to "rehabillatate" offenders.

Friday, April 21, 2017

RECORD EDITORIAL CASTIGATES MONEY ALONE AS DETERMINING BETTER PUBLIC EDUCATION



So it seems we have the worst of all worlds. In the U.S. education is chronically underfunded. Teachers are disrespected and underpaid. Geez I'd love to send a few of our overentitled, unappreciative teachers to the U.S. for about a year. They might actually appreciate what they've got here when they got back. Meanwhile Ontario has increased spending per student by 47% between 2005 and 2018 and Waterloo Region schools are falling behind other Ontario jurisdictions in both graduation rates and English literacy and math.

Yesterday's posting talked about the Trustee system and how it's often used as nothing more than a political springboard. This is so true locally with most just going on to Regional or municipal Councils. Others get into provincial or federal politics. Certainly I believe that pro status quo Trustees have contributed to the problem. That problem is a system looking inwards. It's all about teachers, the union, staff and administration wages, benefits and perks. Students and parents come dead last. And the results of decades of this speak for themselves here in Waterloo. Hello to you Cecil, Jim, Howard and all the past filth on the WRDSB. The Waterloo Region Record article dated April 19/17 is titled "Money alone doesn't educate".

Thursday, April 20, 2017

DEMOCRACY IS FAILING




It's a pessimistic outlook but it is shared amongst those who are seriously observing and thinking. Steve Kannon in today's Woolwich Observer gives us his thoughts on the matter of democracy with his Editor's Notes titled "U.S. politics have been dumbed down, but we have plenty of concerns here too".

There are diminihed expectations about the role of government according to Steve. Government is reduced to managerial functions. The economy seems to be about reducing services and costs while taxes continue to rise. Deregulation of industry and corporations expands while the financial industry sets the agenda. Citizenship is dumbed down to passive observation with occasional trips to the polling stations to vote for the name or face we like.

While Steve, appropriately in my opinion, criticizes corporate America and Canada too, the reality is that citizens are both unattached and apathetic. We are essentially giving away the country. There are both private environmental and human and civil rights organizations who are resisting but the rest of us are drifting. It is not a good scenario and future generations will curse us for our benign neglect. The powerful and wealthy in the country couldn't be much happier about all of this. Perhaps TAG (Technical Advisory Group) here in Elmira, Ontario are a microcosm of all this. Keep bringing in new people while doing your best to marginalize those with knowledge and experience regarding the environmental mess caused by Chemtura Canada and the Ontario Ministry of Environment.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

SCHOOL BOARDS GET CRAPPED ON AGAIN



Well it certainly is illuminating to find out that it isn't just our local Waterloo Region District School Board that is so bad. Apparently school boards throughout Ontario have routinely been getting taken over by the provincial Ministry of Education. While at first blush it seems undemocratic to overule the elected trustees and tell them to step down in favour of a provincial superviser; in fact it sometimes isn't.

Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following story titled "School board trustee job should be abolished", written by Martin Regg Cohn. Mr. Cohn raises two huge issues. The one is that so many trustees are simply about using their position as a springboard to higher office. In other words trying to make a living on the public purse. Apparently when you look at the number of dysfunctional school boards you begin to understand that their motives were not to improve education so much as to improve their electoral chances. You will also learn that the public really are hopeless at electing good people. It's all very superficial. What do the candidates look like and sound like? Are they photogenic with an honest looking face whatever that might happen to be?

The other issue is how quickly certain trustees jump on the gravy train. Would you believe taxpayer paid trips for trustees to New Zealand, Hawaii, Finland, Netherlands and Britain? What can those trustees possibly learn there that would make them better trustees here in Ontario? The answer is nothing. These are simple junkets and rewards for certain trustees who have done as they were told. Disgusting.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

SHAMEFUL BEHAVIOUR OF CANADIAN GOVERNMENTS




Today's Waterloo Region Record carries an Opinion piece from Luisa D'Amato titled "Read this and weep: The ugly truth about residential schools". It is a description from survivors at the residential school in Brantford, Ontario that closed in 1970. These schools forcibly took native children from their parents and put them into these schools to live and learn white ways versus Indian ways. The descriptions of the treatment of children are positively chilling and disgusting. Most importantly it was our government who committed cultural genocide and are culpable in the child abuse that occurred within those schools.

If there is one thing I've learned over the last thirty years it is that rarely does a whistleblower unearth something that the authorities don't already know. Usally illegal and improper activities are fully known and conveniently ignored by both local authorities as well as those higher up the food chain. They are ignored because somebody powerful wants them ignored. Here in Elmira it's all about either ignoring or covering up the extent of damage done by powerful polluters. I expect that there were persons involved in the residential schools with something to gain by hushing up conditions within these schools from 1870 until the very last one was closed in 1996. The coverup only lasted until those culpable were in the clear and gone.

Monday, April 10, 2017

DIRTY POLITICS IS EVERYWHERE



The Waterloo Region Record carried this following story on March 30, 2017 titled "Prison term for bridge revenge plot". This story is in regards to the colossal traffic jam at the George Washington Bridge that was created intentionally. Aides to Republican governor Chris Christie were sentenced to prison for their part in closing lanes without any reason other than to create havoc for the democratic mayor in nearby Fort Lee because he refused to endorse Christie's reelection as governor. The two aides involved were sentenced on fraud and conspiracy charges. A third aide turned state's evidence and testified against the other two. And that folks is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to tit for tat and political payback. Most of these politicians are sociopaths in their own right. The only surprising thing about this incident is that at least some of those responsible were convicted.

Friday, April 7, 2017

MORE ON POLICE OVERSIGHT REVIEW




Last Monday here in the Advocate I posted about the Review recently completed into the three police oversight agencies in Ontario. I expressed some skepticism regarding the efficacy or real intent behind the review. That said today's Waterloo region record has an interesting story regarding one of the recommendations in the police oversight review. The title of today's story is "Call inquests whenever police kill someone through use of force: review".

The Special Investigations Unit has been criticized in the past for hiring ex-police officers as SIU investigators. Also they have been criticized for their penchant for secrecy. They do not report publicly into their investigations of police officers who have been involved in killings, serious injuries and or been the subject of sexual assaults.

This article lists many serious failings and weaknesses in the current system and begs the question why it has taken so long just to get to the discussion stage.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

ONTARIO'S ATTORNEY-GENERAL PROMISES TO IMPROVE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM




Last Friday's Waterloo-Region Record published an article by academics from their respective Sociology departments at the University of Toronto and the University of Guelph. They are examining the promises recently made to make the criminal justice system faster and fairer. Their conclusion is that one reform namely to make bail faster may occur but as far as making it fairer, that is unlikely. They find that the biggest obstacle and problem lies in numerous conditions, irrelevant to the offence, that are set by the courts in order for the accused to receive bail. These conditions include curfews, sureties and other frankly unrelated and irrelevant to the offence conditions demanded by Crown Attorneys. Justice's of the Peace must also think carefully as to whether demanded conditions are necessary or relevant to ensure an accused's appearance in court.

The title of the article is "Reforms may make bail faster, but will it be more fair?".

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

POLICE SHOOTINGS OF CITIZENS




Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carried this story titled "Family speaks out against police violence". The family of Beau Baker, shot to death by police two years ago outside his apartment in Kitchener, have referred to excessive police violence. It's hard to disagree in many cases around Ontario.

Police officers are supposed to be trained to protect themselves and the public. Besides guns they also carry batons, pepper spray and sometimes Tasers or stun guns. The use of non-lethal methods to disarm or stop criminal behaviour should be the first method most especially when the allegedly threatening individual does not have a firearm. It does kind of make you wonder how the British police have done it so well for so long without firearms. It's almost as if there is a reticence in Britain to have state sanctioned individuals killing unarmed citizens. Almost like a moral high ground that is missing in North America.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

ONE MORE NON-INDEPENDENT OMBUDSMAN




It's all about appearances, not reality. In other words if you can fool 80% of the people into believing such and such an investigative body is "independent" than that is good enough. In this case it's all about Canada's military Ombudsman. He is supposed to helping military personnel by holding the Defence Department to account. It turns out that they don't much like being held accountable.

The Waterloo Region Record story is titled "Ombudsman accuses Defence Department of "insidious attacks". Apparently whenever he challenges the Departmernt to treat military personnel better or releases a report criticizing the defence department, the next thing he knows they are throwing up administrative roadblocks for his department, including financial ones. Very classy Dep't of Defence.

The solution that Gary Walbourne is proposing is that he report directly to Parliament. Currently he is suggesting that the Minister of defence's responses are "nebulous" at best.

Monday, April 3, 2017

CIVILIAN OVERSIGHT OF POLICE IN ONTARIO



Basically it's been a joke. For a very long time. They do what they want to do and normally they do it with the co-operation and benign oversight of local police boards and municipal councils. Afterall how many local politicians are poor or marginalized ? How many are likely to get into trouble with the law when they can buy they way out of trouble? Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following story titled "Report aimed at enhanced civilian oversight of Ontario police out this week".

Interestingly there were 1,500 individuals speaking at 18 public consultations. Justice Michael Tulloch also held 130 private meetings. Really and who were those with pray tell? Immediately after this statement in the story it is mentioned that Police Associations, police commissioners, and police services board members all weighed in on Ontario's three police-oversight agencies. Were these the 130 private meetings? If so then let me get this straight. Private citizens had to speak publicly about their experiences yet the vested interests in the status quo got to speak privately with the Judge heading the government-commissioned review of the three agencies that oversee policing in Ontario?

People at public meetings were highly critical of the so called transparency and accountability of the SIU, OPIRD and the OCPC. One speaker at a public meeting in Toronto last fall stated that "we think they are all useless.". Well that certainly is a blunt assessment. I guess my question is whether this review is supposed to reform these police oversight agencies or is it simply another government whitewash and public relations project to attempt to restore credibility and confidence in government bodies.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

RCMP STILL UP TO THEIR GAMES



Really do they or anybody else think that the RCMP have a sliver of credibility left? Their dirty linen just keeps on getting exposed for the world to see. There was a time when being a Mountie meant something. It still does but now it's more about being corrupt, power hungry and egotistical at the top. It's about discriminating against their own employees especially if they are female. Their internal disciplinary and self-regulatory mechanisms are badly broken.

In yesterday's Waterloo Region Record is yet another article describing a judge's decision that the RCMP egregiously harassed over a period of time one of their employees. The title is "Sergeant harassment ruling faulty: RCMP". The judge bluntly castigates the RCMP for their "flagrant and egregious" conduct. The judge further describes their conduct as outrageous and harassing. Wow!

Now keep in mind that I personally know that some judges can be complete assholes. RR in Kitchener is one of them. The problem in this case is that the judge is commenting on an institution with a decades long history of exactly this kind of behaviour. Maybe they truly are innocent in this case. Who the hell is going to believe them however? Ahh yes they have a ton of taxpayer money available to spend trying to get the Ontario Court of Appeal to overturn this decision against them. That's about all it takes with our justice system is a ton of money. Even better when it's not your own but rather taxpayers' money to defend yourself.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

G20 CANADIAN DISGRACE STILL NOT SETTLED




Seven years later and the case continues to drag on. Unbelievable. This case put Canada squarely on the world wide map for human rights abuses by either governments or their police forces. Toronto Police and their reinforcements essentially went apeshit over a few bad apples who vandalized a couple of police cars. "Kettling" or trapping large numbers of people by blocking both ends of the street was done by police in an ill guided and ill managed attempt to catch a few perpetrators. All the police accomplished was to prove to the world as well as canadaians paying attention that our police forces are out of control, unaccountable and non-transparent.

Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the on-going story of Adam Nobody. He was beaten by one police officer while others stood around and watched. The officer has received a criminal conviction for assault yet somehow remains a police officer. This is absurd. Mr. Nobody is attempting to have him removed as a police officer which certainly seems to make sense under all the circumstances. The title of today's article in the Record is "First of two G20 police misconduct cases delayed".

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

SHOOTING OF CIVILIANS NOT TRANSPARENT




In the U.S. there have been many videos of unprovoked and unnecessary police shootings of citizens. here in Canada we had the horrific videos of the shooting of Sammy Yatin on a Toronto street car. Here in Kitchener we had a shooting of a young man two years ago on Brybeck Cres. The man, Beau Baker, was in need of help and he called the Police for it. They responded with seven bullets according to today's Waterloo Region Record story titled "Family of man shot by police mark second anniversary".

Beau's mother and brother state that they still do not have answers as to how and why their family member was shot to death outside his apartment building two years ago. Initially the province refused to hold a coroner's inquest into the death however changed their mind after Beau's mother said in a media interview that she did not know the details of her son's death or the name of the officer involved in the shooting. The Special Investigations Unit (SIU) did investigate and refused to lay charges against the officer but does not provide their reports to the public.

The family are suing the police over the death of Beau. Why do I expect that is the only way they will get even a half assed honest investigation and answers to their questions? Oh yes it's from being involved in far too many so called reviews and investigations that are simply a sham. In Ontario truth is the first casualty of power and money.

Monday, March 27, 2017

WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE SERVICES BOARD APPLICATION



Well as expected my Application went nowhere fast. I have as well in the past applied to the Region`s environmental committee unsuccessfully. Apparently very well informed citizens with a proven talent at ferreting out anomolys, errors and omissions in technical reports are not wanted at the Region. This could also have to do with Ken seiling`s very bad attitude towards myself going back to approximately 1991 as per a now proven unreliable source in Elmira. Ken used to enjoy coffees around her breakfast table way back when.

My Application to the Police Services Board focused on my long history as a human rights and environmental activist in Waterloo Region. Generally speaking this is the kiss of death if you wish to get appointed by politicians to anything however with all the problems the last few years with our Waterloo Region Police Service I figured they might be interested in a token radical. Not so. I had also advised them in my Application of my critical posts in this Blog over the last five years dealing with our local force. Again not a nibble. No interview, no words of encouragement.

That said the people in charge of Applications were however courteous and respectful. It`s the politicians who were and are the problem as they are generally looking for citizens who are either all ready on board or who won`t make waves no matter how obviously silly or not in the public interest, the decisions are.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

WATERLOO REGIONAL POLICE BUST POT MEDICAL DISPENSARY




Seems like K-W residents are voting with their feet. They are going to and buying marijuana at various available medical dispensaries in Kitchener-Waterloo. Something like Vancouver only what a decade or more behind them? Keep in mind both cities are under Federal drug jurisdiction. Apparently Vancouver police feel that their resources should be focused on crime and criminals. Not so much here locally.

Federal pot legislation looms this summer. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has indicated that he and ther federal government are intent on decriminalizing marijuana use whether for recreational or even medicinal use, with or without a doctor's prescription. Apparently the current dispensary that was raided was supplying in some cases pot to those with a prescription. Customers included cancer patients, the elderly and one person who found that marijuana helped him beat his addiction to opioids. Interesting. If my brother, a stroke victim, was still alive I would probably have gotten him some to help with his ongoing pain and discomfort from his stroke. That said when I did suggest it over the last couple of years he wasn't particularily enthusiastic. Who knows? It might have made his last year or two much better.

The Waterloo Region Record article about this raid is titled "Pot dispensary busted".

Friday, March 24, 2017

SO WHAT EXACTLY IS THE POLICE CHASE POLICY?



A young woman is dead. A police officer chasing the suspect is exonerated. The driver being chased is sentenced to eight years in jail. Whether sentenced to eight months or eight years the young woman is just as dead. While the driver pled guilty to multiple charges including criminal negligence causing death; the question remains. Would he have been driving as fast and as recklessly if he wasn't being pursued by an O.P.P. officer right up till the moment he lost control of his vehicle, killing the innocent by-stander?

I would like to know what exactly is police chase policy. At what point in either other traffic, speed or location is a police officer legally required to end the pursuit? Or is this policy simply a vague, subjective one such as it's the officer's discretion to stop when he realizes that the fleeing individual is possibly going to cause an accident with injuries or death.

The story in today's Waterloo Region Record is titled "Officer cleared in crash that killed U of G grad".

Thursday, March 23, 2017

WSIB & ITS' LEGISLATION SCAMS ONTARIO WORKERS OUT OF THEIR RIGHTS



There is an extremely powerful article in today's Waterloo Region Record titled "Miners shine spotlight on WSIB". The author is Janice Martell and she is speaking this afternoon at 2:30 pm. at McMaster University, Wilson Hall 1003. Her article is about a company/government initiative involving dousing miners with ground aluminum dust known as McIntyre Powder. It was a forced industrial health experiment and was hoped to be a method to prevent silicosis in miners. It did not work and in fact caused more harm than good.

Of course the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) have since decided that neurological disorders are not occupational diseases when claimed to be a result of aluminum exposure. Pretty slick isn't it? This is but one more example of our provincial government looking out for the interests of private corporations literally over the dead and dying bodies of Ontario workers.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

GUELPH OFFICER CHARGED WITH DISCREDITABLE CONDUCT



Earlier this month the Waterloo Region Record carried a story titled "Guelph city police officer charged with discreditable conduct". At first blush I felt that this was an appropriate route of action for the Guelph Service to take but in hindsight I'm less sure. As I read the article a sister of an accused in a local murder made some comments on facebook that may have been disrespectful of the murder victim. Meanwhile the murder victim had been discovered at home by an off-duty Guelph police officer. She was a cousin of the officer's wife.

Shortly afterwards the police officer left some sort of phone message on the phone, allegedly "uncivil" and possibly rude, for the sister of the accused who had died the same day as the murder however in a car accident. For his phone message the officer has been charged with discreditable conduct.

Wow this is a difficult one. Clearly both the sister of the accused and the husband of the murder victim's cousin have different ideas about the people involved. With both a murder and another death involved it is hardly surprising that emotions were high and possibly common sense a little lower. If the off-duty police officer had been anyone other than a police officer I seriously doubt that police or any other authorities would have gotten involved. It does not appear that threats were involved.

Is this a case of a police officer behaving unprofessionally while off duty albeit while under significant personal stress? Is it appropriate to charge him with discreditable conduct under those circumstances? Waterloo Regional Police had decided that criminal charges were inappropriate. Seems a little severe to me.

Monday, March 20, 2017

JUSTICE???



Well first off I have to share a political cartoon that was in the waterloo Region Record newspaper last Tuesday, March 14/17. It shows a car up on blocks with a blindfolded lady representing Justice sitting in the car. The caption is "Wheels of Justice' and all the tires are off with the bare front wheels resting on a block of wood labelled Court Case and the back wheels on a block of wood labelled Back Logs. In my opinion Backlogs are but a symptom of a horribly corrupted judicial system in this country.

The Record also has an article titled "Garage gets chance to fight liability for joyrider's injuries". This is a very sad case that occurred in the Paisley-Walkerton area of Ontario. A fifteen year old went on a joyride with his sixteen year friend in a stolen car. Neither had driver's licences. The fifteen year old suffered catastrophic brain injuries in the ensuing car crash. He is suing his friend, his friend's mother and the garage from which the car was stolen.

A local court found the garage liable as did the Ontario Court of Appeal. The case has now gone to the Supreme Court of Canada. This is a tough one. Apparently the lower court feels that a duty of care operates independently of the illegal or immoral conduct of an injured party. Fair enough especially with minors but my question is to what extent that duty of care operates. Sure you can't shoot a trespassing teenager in the back as he's leaving your property. In fact as long as you or your family are not threatened you can not legally take physical action against the teen at all. In this case however it's dealing with allegedly leaving car keys in a car on your own private property. Both trespassing and then theft took place prior to the teen being injured by his friend's driving. This is a tough one to figure out.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

NEITHER THE FIRST NOR THE LAST




It took lawsuits to get our Canadian government to admit their complicity in the torture and abuse of three Canadian citizens who had been held illegally in Syria. What kind of hypocrites are our federal government (former) when they publicly proclaim that we are a multicultural society and then cheerfully throw non-native Canadians under the bus for what: political points with the ....... Americans?

"The former judge cited the RCMP, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and Foreign Affairs for mistakes in the cases.". The Waterloo Region Record carried this story today titled "Compensation, apologizes for three Canadians tortured in Syria". Canadian government officials stated that they apologized for "...any role Canadian officials may have played in relation to their detention and mistreatment abroad and any resulting harm.".

This is the reality. Our governmnts don't give a crap about any of us, only about themselves and their political status. Everything else is smoke and mirrors helping to make our government look good.

Friday, March 17, 2017

PERVERTED JUSTICE



Sure seems to me as well to be sending a message to the public from the justice system. Wealthy accused as well as wealthy convicted offenders are treated differently. Luisa D'Amato has pointed this out quite clearly in her Opinion piece of March 14/17 titled "Justice shouldn't have a price tag". Some of us I expect are basically denoted as potential raw materials, early on, for the grist mill known as the justice system. Whether it's people who don't walk away from an insult or disrespectful behaviour or others arrested for civil disobedience; our justice system is essentially deaf, dumb, blind and politically correct. Afterall who do you think hires, appoints and finances our judicial system? Well we pay for it albeit lying politicians do all the rest.

Luisa's article is about a young man who essentially through very bad behaviour was begging for jail time. He didn't get it because his parents had $65,000 to invest in him via the Betty Ford addiction treatment centre in Minnesota. Essentially the young man bought his way out of jail by spending 4 1/2 months in a beautiful rehab centre. Not exactly the Don Jail or the Kingston pen.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

LOCAL MAN SHOT BY POLICE OFFICER STORY IS GETTING WEIRDER




This is getting bizarre. Today's Waterloo Region Record advises us that Maurice Rivard has spent the last two weeks in St. Mary's hospital and then in the infirmary at Maplehurst Jail in Milton. He is the Cambridge man who was shot by a Waterloo Regional Police officer two weeks ago. He has been charged with attempting to disarm Const. Robert Prentice of the Waterloo Regional Police. We are not yet advised if he was allegedly attempting to take Const. Prentice's Taser (stun gun) from him or if he was trying to liberate the officer of his handgun.

Here's where it gets weird. Mr. Rivard has just been granted bail. He is out of custody and staying with family while recuperating. The provincial Special Investigations Unit is investigating the incident. I can't believe that bail was granted unless Mr. Rivard has a spotless or nearly spotless record. If that is the case then what the hell was going on that the officer felt the need to shoot Mr. Rivard in the torso? Mr. Rivard goes back to court on April 21/17. Somebody has screwed up badly here and I wonder exactly who. The title of today's Record article is "Man shot by police officer gets bail on birthday".

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

THE WATERLOO REGION DISTRICT SCHOOL BOARD DID NOT LIE



Phew that's a relief. Afterall what would we be teaching our children if it ever got out that our public school board did practice the dark arts of obfuscation, fictional fantasies, alternate facts and being truth challenged? It turns out according to today's Waterloo Region Record that the WRDSB simply practiced secrecy, errors of omission and keeping parents and trustees in the dark. Lying? Noooooo way!

The article on the front page of the Record is titled "School board secrecy amid Vimy turmoil". The sub-title is "FOI documents show board staff kept trustees and parents in dark on cancelled trip being revived". Well really who can blame the senior staff of the WRDSB? People misrepresent and fudge for very legitimate reasons. These include diminished expectations of being caught plus being powerful enough, via taxpayers money, to always have your legal team chomping at the bit sort of like a pit bull. Little or no transparency normally helps as does love. Yes you heard it here "love". Being able to love the Ontario Ministry of Education. Afterall doesn't love mean never having to say you're sorry? Isn't love the reverse of accountability? Having to answer for one's "communications failures" certainly isn't the same as having to answer for say lying for example. The latter is so old school. Our WRDSB are if anything up with the times. They are modern. Haven't they told us that over the years? Who wouldn't believe them?

I'm kind of spitballing here but I wonder if they could make more money by holding seminars for provincial ministries as well as for corporations facing adverse public relations. These seminars could assist say the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change in their dealings with Elmira, Ontario residents upset over their failures with the Canagagigue Creek. Similarily perhaps Chemtura Canada and their consultants could use a refresher course on keeping people in the dark. Yes they are already good at it but there's no shame in honing one's skills. Well done WRDSB. You have restored my faith in your basic ideals.