Tuesday, July 14, 2020


   The federal government awarded Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s half-brother a $12,430 contract last year to speak and take part in a cryptocurrency conference in Switzerland.
   Kyle Kemper says he was asked to be the “champion speaker” at the Crypto Valley Blockchain Conference in Zug, Switzerland, because of his expertise, and that the contract had nothing to do with his family. Mr. Kemper was previously the executive director of the Blockchain Association of Canada and he wrote a book called The Unified Wallet: Unlocking the Digital Golden Age.
   NDP MP Charlie Angus said he sees two issues with Mr. Kemper’s speaking gig in Switzerland – one is his connection to the Prime Minister, and the other is that the government hasn’t taken a position on the technology.
“Once again it’s an example of the Prime Minister’s close family benefiting from their relationship to Justin Trudeau,” Mr. Angus said.
“It becomes even more questionable when he’s speaking on behalf of a technology he’s promoting that Canada has not formally taken a position on,” Mr. Angus added.


  The hope is that the federal wage subsidy will shoulder a large part of the payroll of any company that is still losing a big chunk of its revenue compared to last year, allowing firms to reopen and bring back their workers even if they’re still constrained due to pandemic rules.
   But how much of their payrolls will be covered by this extension? How much money does a company have to be losing in order to qualify? And what about companies that are hoping to hire back minimum-wage workers, but can’t find any because they’re collecting the more lucrative Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)?
   Without those answers, companies won’t know if it’s worth their time and effort to reopen on Friday as the premier hopes, says Perrin Beatty, the president of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.

Monday, July 13, 2020


Almost all businesses and public spaces across Ontario can reopen in Stage 3 starting this Friday with the exception of Toronto and neighbouring regions, Premier Doug Ford is announcing Monday.

Dine-in restaurants and bars can get back in business with limits on capacity and other public health measures in place such as mandatory seating of patrons when eating or drinking, government documents say.

Among the other enterprises that can reopen their doors with strict conditions include casinos, bingo halls, convention centres and meeting places, gyms, fitness centres, concerts and live shows, movie theatres, real estate open houses, sporting and race events, and tours.


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has apologized for not recusing himself from the government’s decision to have WE Charity manage a $900-million student-aid program, saying his family’s longtime involvement with the organization should have kept him out of the discussions.
The surprise apology marked a sharp about-face for the prime minister after weeks of trying to defend the controversial, sole-sourced contract with WE, and follows revelations his wife, brother and mother had been paid a combined $300,000 for appearing at WE events over the years.


  In Norway, Unni Wikan, a female professor of social anthropology at the University of Oslo, insists that "Norwegian women must take their share of responsibility for these rapes," because Muslim men found their manner of dress provocative. So much for the feminist claim that women are free to dress as seductively as they want -- and woe to the man who misinterprets this, unless he is from a racial or religious minority group.
   Professor Wikan's conclusion was not that Muslim men living in the West need to adjust to Western norms, but the exact opposite: "Norwegian women must realize that we live in a Multicultural society and adapt themselves to it."

Sunday, July 12, 2020


   A Stanford professor who sued a critic and a scientific journal for $10 million — then dropped the suit — has been ordered to pay the defendants’ legal fees based on a statute “designed to provide for early dismissal of meritless lawsuits filed against people for the exercise of First Amendment rights.”
    Mark Jacobson, who studies renewable energy at Stanford, sued in September 2017 in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia for defamation over a 2017 paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNASthat critiqued a 2015 article he had written in the same journal. He sued PNAS and the first author of the paper, Christopher Clack, an executive at a firm that analyzes renewable energy.
  Jacobson could be on the hook for more than $600,000, the total of what the plaintiffs have told the court were their legal costs


Eyes are still on the Three Gorges Dam as a rare flooding event spreads across Asia. Bridges that have stood for 500 years have succumbed.
Pity the poor people of Wuhan, the flood waters released from the Three Gorges Dam have arrived. That dam and all upstream dams have opened the flood gates, and cities as far downstream as Wuhan are flooding.
According to the South China Morning Post, 19,380,000 people have been affected by flooding across China as of July 3rd. Chriss Street says “a record 16.8 inches falling between Sunday and Monday morning, and inflows running at 40 acre-feet per second after, CMA on July 4 issued an 80-percent risk of thundershowers for each of the next 11 days.