Pebbles Take

Monday, November 27, 2006

Hareper looses minister over Quebec Motion

Harper cabinet minister quits over Quebec nation motion

Michael Chong. (CPimages/Adrian Wyld)

OTTAWA (CP) - Prime Minister Stephen Harper's stand on Quebec as a nation appears to have cost him a cabinet minister.

MP Garth Turner and other sources say Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Michael Chong is quitting his post over a government motion that recognizes the Quebecois as a nation within a united Canada.

Chong, who also held the minister of sport portfolio, is expected to hold a news conference later today. CP

Michael Chong was also President of the Privy Council. In a cabinet of 25 members, to loose a senior member is quite serious.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

If the Star doesn't endorse Dion Tuesday, then they sent a real mixed message today

What the next Liberal Leader needs:

Economic prosperity. Canada's economic health requires investing in large cities such as Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver that produce much of our wealth. The Liberals must help ensure that cities have a stable revenue stream from federal income and sales taxes to fund mass transit, bridges, roads and other infrastructure.

As well, Ottawa must aggressively grow the "knowledge economy" by investing in research and development, by making it easier for young people to get higher education, and by better exploiting immigrants' skills.

Social justice. Some 5 million Canadians live in poverty. The Liberals must go further than the Tories in boosting the income of the working poor by introducing an earned-income supplement in the form of a monthly cheque or a refundable tax credit and by ensuring all Canadians have equitable access to employment insurance. They should recommit to a national child-care program. And invest in medicare to provide catastrophic drug coverage and to bring down wait times in key areas.

Healthy environment. Ottawa must try to meet its Kyoto targets. That means setting hard greenhouse gas caps on all industrial sectors. Investing in an East-West energy grid to give coal-burning provinces access to cleaner hydro power. Providing incentives to purchase hybrid autos and to make homes energy efficient. And penalizing energy waste.

Given the Harper Conservatives' circumscribed small-government approach, it should not be difficult for the Liberals to define themselves as the party of vision and energy, ready to use the considerable power of government to improve people's lives. The agenda they put forward must challenge Canadians to become not only a more prosperous society, but also a more caring, just and responsible one.
Sounds like they took a Dion press release and put it on their editorial page.

Anti Israel Bigot is Also an anti Quebec Bigot

Thomas Hubert, our favorite character from this summers antisemitic fiasco is also fiercely anti -Quebecois aswell.

To: Canadian Parliament
We, the undersigned Canadians, oppose recognition of any province as a 'nation,' and call on our elected representatives to work instead for a united, equal Canada.


34. Thomas Hubert


Friday, November 24, 2006

Rumblings of a Big Announcement

The Gerard Kennedy Campaign has a blank media release up on their website dated today. I have to think something big is happening tomorrow. Either a big endorsement (my guess would be Ralph Goodale), or a policy announcement. Problably on the nation resolution.

I wonder if Gerard will walk lock step with all other federalist forces on this issue, or vendu the party, and my prefered candidate Stephane Dion.

This announcement is big enough to get Op-Eds in the national and french papers tomorrow (according to my source inside the Queensway).

Hopefully this isn't all fizz, no pop.

MI will provide an easy win for the Conservatives

Jeffrey Simpson today said
The Conservatives will be quietly delighted if this week's manoeuvrings help Mr. Ignatieff by defusing the internal controversy he ignited, because most outside Quebec, having watched his leadership campaign unfold, have concluded that he would be the easiest Liberal to beat.
It should be obvious in my posting of that remark that I wholeheartedly agree with that statement.

Also, else where in the article, Mr. Simpson makes the argument that the Quebecois, and Quebeckers (even if the Hansard recording is Quebecers) do not share the same meaning. Once again, just a few posts ago I made the same argument.

The resolution speaks of Québécois, or French-speaking Quebeckers. Others, like Mr. Charest, speak of Quebec as a nation, and the two ideas are not the same. But the distinction will likely be forgotten.
Link (behind insider edition wall)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Don't let Ignatieff off easy

We must remember, MI supported Quebec as a nation, not Quebecers.

MI supported recognizing Quebec as a nation in the constitution, not symbolically in the house.

MI's position is much closer to the original Bloc resolution, than the Conservative motion.

MI - come clean, this isn't a win for you.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Quebecois are a nation, Quebeckers are not

The difference between these two is very big for me as an english Canadian. When the word Quebecois is used in an english sentence, it means ethnic francophone to me. It is not translated to Quebecker as the media seems to have done.

Recognizing Quebeckers as a nation is dangerous. It gives the group clearly defined territory, since the group Quebeckers is defined by geography (the province of Quebec). This is not true of the Quebecois, whom as an ethnic group do not have territory in large parts of the province (northen Quecbec).

The motion when put forward, will hopefully be far less ambiguous.

On Afghanistan Kennedy leads, Dion follows

Dion's position November 22nd "Look, we are very willing to work with you, to design something that makes sense, because I don't want to risk the life of our soldiers if we are not making progress "

Kennedy's position August 29th "Canada should push NATO to re-evaluate what amounts to a losing strategy in Afghanistan and push Prime Minister Harper to address the shortfall in aid development.

"If NATO fails to change their strategy, Canada should pull out of the war in Afghanistan,"

"The only way Canada can justify staying in Afghanistan is if we can create a mandate for real success. Loss of life lack of progress and no end in sight weigh heavily on our national conscience."

"The only way we can justify staying in Afghanistan is if we can create a mandate for real success. "

Despite being painted as distinct on the Afghanistan file, Dion is just reiterating Gerard Kennedy's thoughts on the issue from 3 months ago.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Will someone square the circle for me?

How does one who abhors ethnic nationalism embrace the concept of Quebec nationhood?

Also, how much does this quote sound like a sovereigntist?

"But the phrase 'when the conditions are right' is extremely important here. It's not a quibble. No prudent politician wants to lead us into constitutional discussions unless we have common understandings, common will to do what we have to do."

Friday, November 17, 2006

Reckless Polling Twisting Perceptions

"Given the margin of error, the Decima survey suggests there was little significant difference in the national appeal of the top four leadership contenders."

Enough said.


Tuesday, November 14, 2006

It seems the Green Party has run out of money

Elizabeth May's London campaign site, the site using her name is down. Not just down, it seems the provider has not been paid, and at least one of the sites has a URL poacher already on it. Oh well, I guess the Green Party running a 88k campaign is still just the Green Party, not ready for prime time.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

More Nation Thoughts

If recognizing Quebec as a nation in the Constitution has no legal implications, why are people so adement about it?

If it does have legal implications, what are they?

Does this infer groups rights into our individual rights constitution?

If it has torn the party so much, do we really want to subject the country to it?

Are Acadiens a nation?



Will this create two classes of provinces? (those whom at one point were independent from eachother, and ones created from parts of federalized Canada ie Alberta, Saskatchewan vs all others)

If it ain't broke don't fix it?

Why isn't anyone challenging Charest to sign the constitution?

Who is the Greenest Leadership Candidate?

Most people would likely say Stéphane Dion Dion, or possibly Michael Ignatieff with his carbon tax, but not the prestigious Sun Media Chain.

According to the Edmonton Sun:

"Gerard Kennedy, the greenest, most left-wing of the candidates running for the leadership of the federal Liberals"

It is interesting across the country how view points can be so different.

It was in an article about nuclear power being used to fuel oilsands development.

Now, I have always found it weird that we use a clean fuel gas, to make oil in the oilsands. I think whatever can be done to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and free up gas to sell to people at the same time has to be winnner. Nuclear waste isn't so hard to manage, and is an easier problem to fix the global climate change.

Link to the Sun Article

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Nation Question

A no brainer.

I know of a community that has a distinct culture. That has defined geographical territory. That currently operates as a quasi autonomous region in its applications of its powers of separateness. This area rebels against the trends of suburbanization in English Canada, and protects and nurtures its artists and cultural figures.

I am talking of course about the Toronto Islands. There are no private vehicles on the Toronto Islands, setting a distinct course in development. There is also no private property ownership, the houses are leased from the state while the belongings remain property of the individual, much like in Soviet Block Countries.

Despite the government controlling the land of the island, residents still fight onwards over continued use of an island airport thrust on them by the continued oppression by the mainlanders. This continual fight is epitomized in the pillaging of the islands by the English Canada power elites whom have placed three yacht clubs and numerous sailing clubs on the Islands.The residents have worked together to defend there interests, and in turn protect their children from indoctrination of the mainlanders by running a communitarian co-op childcare on the island.

A home on Ward's IslandThe image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
Pretty Distinct to me.

Against all the adversity, the community continues to thrive. However, for the community to grow I ask you support the Toronto Island's Womens' Policy Network resolution at the Bienial Convention. The Toronto Islands must be recognized as a nation, to allow the usurpation of various national powers in continuing struggles against the Port Authority and the Province.

How much longer will we leave this unique group without constitutional protection for their way of life, and a constitutional affirmation of their right to self determination?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

In Defence of Income Trusts

Corporations and trusts do not own themselves. They are owned by people, either in this country or outside. Even if a corporation is owned by another, eventually down the line they are owned by someone.

This someone pays income tax on their income. If this person owns a business that is not incorporated, a sole-proprietorship, the entire profit of the business is counted as personal income. It is not taxed at the corporate level. It is taxed as personal income.

When an individual owned a trust unit, it entitled them to a payout of their portion of profit every quarter, or year depending. The trust, could not keep cash on hand besides the amount needed to keep operating. Since 100% of the profit is given directly to the investors, there is no reason to tax the corporation, it would just decrease the amount given to the investors.

When the profit returns to investors, they have to pay taxes on it. When the profits went outside the country they were subject to a withholding tax similar to the rate individual investors pay at home.

This avoids the problem economists describe as double taxation, when profits are taxed at the corporate level and individual level. Double taxation requires an overall higher tax rate (combined) to capture the same amount of money as single taxation, and results in some dead weight loss (really bad).

So if people were still paying taxes on the corporate earnings, why was action taken? The totally symbolic reason that the tax balance would shift more towards individuals and away from corporations.(economists know this measure is pointless, since all taxes are borne by individuals) This measure would then be used by labour, and likely the NDP to attack the government on giving corporate fat cats tax relief while raising the burden on individuals. (which is false, but the perception is there)

This government public relations move led to a loss of almost $20 billion dollars. Bad economics (Harper should know better), bad optics (promise made, promise kept?) and in the end bad strategy (pissing off seniors and the oil patch, their base)

Friday, November 03, 2006

If the conservatives believe this, I wonder what they have been smoking?

Question Authority? Conservatives? If you question authority their way of course - by not supporting equal marriage, by not registering your guns, and by breaking promises?

You too can be a free thinking conservative, as long as your pay tribute to Rob Anders and Jason Kenney. If you challenge an incumbent, in a democratic nomination meeting, that is just wrong, too much free thinking for conservatives, in a democracy no less.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Who has the richest donors?

So I looked over the Leadership candidate contribution reports for the last quarter, and there is much to be garnered. The order of donations received, is in almost direct relation to DEM results, with the order being:
  1. Michael Ignatieff
  2. Robert Rae
  3. Gerard Kennedy
  4. StÈphane Dion
  5. Scott Brison
  6. Joseph Volpe
  7. Ken Dryden
  8. Martha Hall Findlay
  9. Carolyn Bennett
  10. Hedy Fry
  11. Maurizio Bevilaqua
But who is most dependent on large donors? Bob Rae comes in a close second to Joe Volpe, with close to 85% of support coming in amounts more the $1000. Gerard Kennedy and Micheal Ignatieff come in the high 60s, with Stephane Dion at 50%.

It is Gerard Kennedy who wins on both fronts for highest average donation above and below $1000. (if you ignore Joe Volpe in the above $1000 amount.)

So why does this matter? Donations limits will likely be substantially decreased in the near future.

The picture is a link to itself, if you can't read it well on this page.