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.
Monday, July 31, 2017
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
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
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
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
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
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
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.
Monday, July 17, 2017
Saturday, July 15, 2017
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
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
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
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
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.