Friday, September 21, 2018


  Levy, Toronto Sun:  On the morning after the appeal court decision on the stay of Bill 5, NDP councilor Joe Cressy issued an e-mail advising constituents he’s going to “continue to fight back against this unprecedented attack on the city.  “Doug Ford’s attack on our city has been relentless … he is committed to trampling on our … fundamental rights,” he wrote.
   I really hope that this election will get rid of some of the past-their-due-date has-beens and those who’ve taken this city in a terrible direction with their hug-a-thug, stroke-a-lawless-transient, enable-the-drug addicted ideologies.
  With any luck, fewer councilors will mean less time to dream up their social justice warrior agendas and causes that have little to do with running a city, like anti-black-racism and aboriginal secretariats or a day against Islamophobia.


  Some rich foreigners seeking Canadian residency under a special Quebec program for wealthy investors couldn't point to the province on a map, while others submitted fake documents or disguised their assets — yet many of them were still accepted for immigration, former civil servants say.
  The officials, charged with administering the Quebec Immigrant Investor Program (QIIP), say they were sometimes pressured into ignoring signs that applicants' fortunes were founded on corruption or other ill-gotten gains.
   "The Quebec Immigrant Investor Program is a scam from start to finish. I think that everyone who's involved in the program knows that," said Ian Young, the Vancouver correspondent for Hong Kong's South China Morning Post newspaper and a seasoned observer of immigration patterns from China to Canada. "I think that includes policy-makers, the people who facilitate it and the immigrants themselves."


   Months after cancelling hundreds of renewable energy contracts, the Ontario government introduced legislation Thursday to scrap a law that aimed to bolster the province’s green energy industry.
  Premier Doug Ford promised during the spring election campaign to repeal the Green Energy Act, which was introduced by the previous Liberal government in 2009 in a bid to grow the province’s solar and wind energy supply.
   Critics of the act have said it resulted in an increase in electricity costs and saw the province overpay for power it did not need.

Thursday, September 20, 2018


  When Christine Blasey Ford, the psychology professor who accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexually abusing her in high school, came forward with her accusation, she reportedly mentioned two other witnesses at the party where Kavanaugh allegedly abused her. One of them has spoken out, denying any knowledge of the party or the assault.
  "I understand that I have been identified by Dr. Christine Blasey Ford as the person she remembers as 'P.J.' who supposedly was present at the party she described in her statements to the Washington Post," Patrick J. Smyth said in a letter sent to the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday.
   "I am issuing this statement today to make it clear to all involved that I have no knowledge of the party in question; nor do I have any knowledge of the allegations of improper conduct she has leveled against Brett Kavanaugh," Smyth declared.


  Papal adviser Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga said last week that Cardinal Theodore McCarrick’s serial sex abuse and the way the pope handled it is a “private matter” that should not be treated as a sensational story.
  “Turning a private matter into a bombshell headline that explodes in the world and whose shrapnel does damage to the faith of many people does not seem right,” the Honduran cardinal said in reference to a recent report by the former papal nuncio to the United States.
  “I think that a management issue ought to be aired with more serene and objective criteria, not in a negative tone charged with very bitter expressions,” said Maradiaga, who is often referred to as Francis’ “vice pope” because of his position of prominence in the Vatican and his unparalleled influence in the Francis pontificate.


  The Canada Infrastructure Bank has asked the federal government for millions of dollars in operational expenses over the past year — even though it has announced only one project so far.
  According to Finance Canada documents obtained through the Access to Information Act, in March 2018 the bank requested a draw-down from the federal Consolidated Revenue Fund of $5,756,000 to cover operational expenses until the end of June. That followed an earlier request in August 2017 for $5,610,000 to cover initial expenses.
   The two requests amount to $11,366,000 to pay for salaries and compensation, administration, legal services, travel, communications, IT and other professional services. In August 2017, the bank also asked Ottawa for $1,381,000 to cover capital expenses; according to the documents, the bank is not requesting any more funds for capital expenditures at this time.


  The federal government spent the summer making $43 billion worth of funding announcements — aimed primarily at Liberal ridings in Eastern Canada.
  The size of funding announcements ranged from relatively minor — $4,000 for renovations to a Quebec town's recreation centre, for example — to major, such as the unveiling of Canada's Poverty Reduction Strategy, $22 billion in spending already committed to federal programs since 2015 with no new money attached.
  HuffPost Canada tabulated funding announcements made by federal departments and regional development agencies from June 20 — after the House of Commons rose for the summer — until Labour Day, on Sept. 3.