Thursday, November 7, 2013

Nov. 7: I just can't keep up....

I have pages of notes on blunders and shabby journalism by the Irving press. But I can't use them because every day, I am overwhelmed by ths lastest and numerous travesties that appear in these papers.

Today, we're treated to yet a another big, front-page story about garbage collection in Moncton. I'm not sure how many days (or weeks) this has been a feature story in the Moncton Times and Transcript but "frankly Scarlett, I don't give a damn."

The story, by Cole Hobson, is well reported - but it's still tripe. Hobson is too good to waste his life in the Irving press.. He should be making contacts in the real world.

Then page 3 and two (count them) two ads for the casino - disguised as news stories. On p. 7, there's a big news story (ad) about a pastry shop that is now going to serve meals.

In fact, the only news story in Section A worth reading at all  (and again by Cole Hobson) is about a report on the state of the rail industry to be released soon. The rail system is not only neglected and  unsafe; there appears to be deadly abuse of it.

Alas, this report doesn't look at the surely criminal neglect of our tracks or the abuses by shippers or the government's secrecy about railway safety regulations  (if there are any).  It doesn't take a hard look - or a look at all - at Lac Megantic.

This is a report about the neglect of Via Rail and the decline of passenger service. In a way, the report doesn't matter because Harper won't be doing anything, anyway. But it is a problem we should know about.

So passeth Section A.

Meanwhile, we are living in days that will be staples of every Canadian history book for generations. There's a story  about it "Questons raised over senators" on Section C, p. 1. Alas, it's completely off the point. It's from The Canadian Press, whose reporters seem to be a clueless lot.

The great issue is NOT whether suspended senators will lose their dental iinsurance, etc. The issue is that Senate had no power to suspend them in the first place. The Senate has broken the law according to the Canadian constitution.

If the three senators have created a crime, then there should be charges laid, and they should face a ciminal court. That is the law. It is not only the law; the right to know the precise charge and to be able to offer a defence in the courts is fundamantal to any democracy. Senate has not only broken the law according to the Canadian contutuion; it has denied a right fundamental to any democracy.

The Senate did that to protect the Prime Minister from another fundamental rule of a democracy. It's not a law. But it is still essential to any democracy. The Prime Minister must not lie to the House of Commons.

Harper has lied, if only by ommission. He has avoided the fundamental question. He knew that Duffy and Wallin lived in Ontario. He knew that the constitution plainly requires senators to have their main residences in the provinces they represent. So when he appointed Duffy and Wallin, he knew he was breaking the law.

But he has refused to answer that question - and the Senate suspensions are a way of dancing away from the issue. So the Prime Minister has arranged for Senate to break the law.

This has never before happened in Canadian history. Nobody can guess the consequences of this, and of the precedent it sets. But they could be serious, indeed. But what Irving press gives us in its big story is some mindless drivel about senatorial dental plans.

This a a prime example of why we need opinion columns in a newspaper, to deal with the meanings of the news. But what do we get?

We get the usual, half-wit editorial on the "events centre".  We get Red Allen babbling in what he thinks is sophisticated wit about something nobody cares about. And, really, the old joke about wife no. 1 is  quite played out. Give it a rest.
Most of News Today is a big story about ten people getting the Order of N.B. (I've never before seen such an  award-happy province. Is there anybody left who doesn't have an order of NB?)

Then we have half a page on two people named humanitarians of the year. One of the them,  I'm sure, deserved it. As for the other - well being a humanitarian is a lot cheaper than paying taxes. And you get an award for it.

oh, yeah. Then there's a half page of pictures of people getting awards.

Another oh,yeah. Alward is going to require lobbyists (people who bribe politicians) to register as lobbyists (so that the process will be more open and transparrent.)

Come off it, Alward. We already know quite well who bribes the government in New Burnswick. And that has done nothing to make it open or transparent. The US has registered lobbyists for many, many years. And in the US, the lobbyists actually run the country while making the elected congressmen multimillionaires.. I don't see how it has made the slightest difference in anything.

Tell you what, Alward, if you really want an open and transparent government, why not just give the lobbyists the boot? Then the people running the province would be the ones we elect. Wouldn't that be nicer?

The editorial (yet again) assures us that an "events centre" would be profitable. Great. So let the people who are going to get the profit pay for it.   Isn't that the way capitalism is supposed to work? What are you at the TandT - a bunch of commies?

Alec Bruce is not at his best. He describes anti-shale gas people as ones who are defending the people against big, bad corporations; and are taking a stand in the absence of a trustworthy, faithful government. Then he adds that such talk is a lot of nonsense.

Chap shot, Alec. And not one of your brighter moments.

Are you seriously suggesting that big corporations are run by sweethearts who do only good to othets?
Are you suggesting we HAVE a government that is trustworthy and faithful? If so, I  suggest you are the one who is talking nonsense.

Beth Lyons has far the best column in today's paper.

And, once again, I have no space to list the stories that the TandT missed. such as -

1. The CIA and the US army has been using medical doctors to be activly involved in torture - helping the torturers, not the victims. And that is, to put it kindly,  highly unprofessional.
2. We have had few details on the Canada-Europe trade deal. But remember this. It is not standard practice to permit companies to break environmental regulations and to ignore other Canadian laws.
If what they do becomes so harmful that government feels it has to step in and stop the damage, then the foreign company has the right to sue the government for what it claims are lost profits.

That's right kiddies. A foreign company can come here, pollute wildly, destroy whole regions sicken and even kill people - and if the government tries to stop them, they can sue for billions. It's been done. Often.  Oh, brave new world.

3. It looks as though a Syrian peace deal can't go ahead because the UN, with US agreement, says the rebels must take part. The US also says that Assad must not be a candidate in any future election.

What the hell is going on?

Why should the rebels even be asked to attend talks on the future of Syria? Most of them aren't Syrian. They're foreigners. They're illegal invaders.

As for a rule that Assad cannot be a candidate in an election - why? the whole point is to establish a democracy. In a democracy, the people decide who will rule them. What gives the US the right to decide who can run in a democratic election in another country?

It's looks as thought these talks are being set up to fail.

4. As Israeli/Palstinian peace talks resume, Israel is bulldozing the homes of 15,000 Palestinians who are Israeli citizens living in Jerusalem. It is also accelerating it annexations of Palestinian territory, expelling the palesinians and destroying their homes, then giving the land to Israelis.

So that looks like another peace negotiation being set up for failure.

But don't worry. If you read the Tand T , you don't have to even know about these things.


  1. Justice Echlin: Historically, the common law has tended towards the view that in the absence of an express or implied term in the contract of employment, it is generally not open to an employer to suspend without pay as a means of disciplining an employee for misconduct. - See more at:


  2. that sounds like an eminently sensible reading. And it would be surely suprising if not a singular lawyer in that whole Conservative pack knew it.

  3. Dear Graeme Decarie:

    A friendly wager! I propose that tomorrow’s Tyranny Transcript won't cover this story:

    Among yesterday’s stories Irving’s Twits Transcript may have missed ...

    -- Riots continue 3 nights, Spread to Stockholm suburbs after police shooting
    -- Japanese government Angered by US Spying
    -- Egypt Turning from US to Russia for Military Aid
    -- Britain spying from Berlin embassy, Germany demands explanation
    -- UN slams Canada for poor climate change record
    -- More than 800,000 Canadians Rely on Food Banks, Study
    -- Million Mask March goes Global, plans for protests in 400 locations
    -- Iran’s Foreign Minister to Outline Possible Nuclear Deal Framework
    -- China Demands Accurate Nuclear Account from Japan
    -- Syria Kurds oust jihadists from Turkey border area
    -- US warns of 'consequences' depending on Kenya election outcome
    -- Millions in Syria Need Humanitarian Aid
    -- Syrian Army Ops Successful, Foreign Militants take Heavy Losses
    -- Germany Rules out Asylum for Edward Snowden

    And there is this stunner:

    -- Rand Paul admits to being imperfect

    Now you may need more news sources like you need more holes in your head. But if you’re wondering, ‘where th’ heck did he find all that... the answer is here:

    Infopig is repetitive, long and repetitive. But it is a fast way to find plenty of unreported stuff. Maybe it can help.

    Take care!

  4. You're bang on. It also missed what may be the story of the century (i'll be talking about it to open my Friday blog - and it still has not understood what the senate fuss is all about.)