#PCloadLetter The Ontario PCs Send Misdirecting Mail #VoteOn

(PC Load Letter is from printer displays of the past, and the comedy Office Space. It indicates the paper tray is empty. It was the best pun I could come up with on short notice.)

Looks like a blatant vote misdirection scheme, akin to RoboCon used by the federal Conservatives in the last general election. One of the Conservative campaigns, in Guelph, is under scrutiny in court right now.

Canadian Police and Suicide Hotlines Violating Privacy

It’s mind boggling that Canadian police would think it’s justified in sharing mental health information with Homeland Insecurity in order to help the USA discriminate against people with mental illness.

What in the heck made them think it’s okay? Are they crazy?

People need to trust that they can reach out to a Suicide Hotline without fear of future reprisals. Canadian police have seriously damaged this expectation, and therefore are likely to have harmed people who’d have otherwise sought help. It would be hard to learn definitively if this abuse of authority has killed people, because the people we’d learn that from will have silenced themselves permanently.

No word yet from the Regina and Saskatoon police forces if they violate privacy in this manner.

Future Proof: Ice Storms

Last year Shane vlogged about ice storms. Let’s not wait until a big storm hits Saskatchewan before we future proof our homes being built today.

You can check out Shane’s website, and buy his book.

If I had $20,000 to spend on a “depreciating liability” (a car), or $20,000 to spend on renewable energy for my home, which would be more useful during an ice storm or other time of emergency? Arguably a car could be useful to remove myself from the place of emergency, but if there’s no enough gas, or electricity to pump the gas, or if the roads are jammed, a warm home would be much more useful.

Energy prices are only going to go up, so investing in energy systems today is an excellent choice. A company local to Regina that could help is Sound Solar, but there are others with good reputations also.

Rob Ford 2012 vs Rob Ford 2013

Stephen Harper urges tougher crime laws, meets with Rob Ford
The mayor met privately with the prime minister in Scarborough for almost an hour Tuesday to talk about curbing gun violence.

Harper and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford held their own meeting on the issue on Tuesday, snubbing Premier Dalton McGuinty, who had asked for all three levels of government to be at the table for a discussion.

After Harper’s motorcade had left, Ford climbed into his SUV in a secure police parking area and drove quickly past waiting reporters and residents who had hoped to speak with the two leaders.

In a two-paragraph statement, Ford later said they had a “very productive conversation” and “shared a number of ideas that will be followed up in the next weeks and months . . . to make sure we have the tools in place to better prevent gang violence and protect the public from criminals.”

Now, Harper is all, “Rob who?”

Toronto shooting: Mayor Rob Ford says gang members should leave the city
“Go somewhere else. I don’t want ‘em living in the city anymore,” Ford said of gang members returning from jail.

Ford also said he will meet with Premier Dalton McGuinty on Monday to ask for more money for policing, not for social programs.

“It just tore my heart apart. And I just thought, this is not the city that we live in, this is — I was mad. More than upset, I was mad. I said, ‘Enough’s enough.’ I’m lookin’ around, and I said, ‘I’m not gonna sit here, I’m gonna be proactive.’ I talked to the premier, got a hold of the premier, called the prime minister’s office, I said, ‘I want meetings. I want something to be done.’ I want these people out of the city. And I’m not going to stop. Not put ’em in jail, then come back and you can live in the city. No. I want ’em out of the city. Go somewhere else. I don’t want ’em living in the city anymore,” Ford said.

He returned to the point later in the interview. “We have to send a message. Three years for possession of a handgun? That’s nonsense. You should do some serious hard time, and not come back here. Once you come out, out of jail, get out of the city. Go somewhere else,” he said.

(torontosun.com/2012/07/17/rob-ford-calls-scarborough-shooting-isolated-insists-city-safe)

“We must use every legal means to make life for these thugs miserable, to put them behind bars, or to run them out of town,” he said. “We will not rest until being a gang member is a miserable, undesirable life.

“Some people have suggested there is a gang war brewing,” Ford said. “I don’t know if that’s true. But, I do know it’s time for us to declare war on these violent gangs.”

2013 comes around and we see a photo of Ford posing with a gang and hear of a video where he is allegedly smoking crack.
rob ford with gang

Rob Ford in 2013 is the “proactive” “tool” fighting drug crime by infiltrating it, right?

BONUS:
Shooting victim from last year’s drug connected shooting spree that inspired Ford to be a proactive tool:

Horoscope for a dead girl’s zombie Twitter account:

It seems as if one phase of your life is falling away, and you aren’t all that unhappy about its demise. If you have been floating along, waiting for something to inspire you, this could be your chance. It’s as if you are expecting guests, yet you don’t know who they are or when they will arrive. Nevertheless, there is a lot to do right now in preparation of your next adventure, so get busy without wasting a precious moment.

ConCalls: CEAP Adscam 2.0?

The annoying Canadian Economic Action Plan acronym CEAP appears in the latest Conservative phone calling scandal because a company Dean Del Mastro hired, got CEAP money to develop GeoVote. It’s unclear to me at this moment exactly how the economy would be stimulated by a program that identifies voters geographically so a political party that worked with Holinshed could gather support more easily. Is this program Open Source Software that any Canadian can now benefit from in theory? I tried to find GeoVote the other day, and couldn’t find where to download it, so I suspect it’s not OSS.

I don’t know if there’s any evidence Holinshed did, or would work with a party other than one friendly to the federal Conservatives (ie. Harper). What I’ve seen about other voter-identifying companies who work with the CPC, the CPC requires an exclusivity contract. To me, that suggests that giving them money from the taxpayer to promote the Conservatives’ CEAP, for the purpose of identifying voters to make it easier for a political party (the Conservatives for one) to collect donations and support, was a misuse of taxpayer money designed to benefit the Conservatives and not our economy.

At some point Holinshed responded to Kady O’Malley’s article online about them getting CEAP money, but their website is no longer available, so who knows what they said in response?

Am I asking too many questions? Should I stop? I can’t stop though, can I?
Here are five more questions that DDM hasn’t answered. He’s done answering though, for now.

Snow Way That’s Cool

My bad. I put away the snow shovel before June. Sorry Regina.
I saw snowflakes flying in the street lights as I left the Lawson Thursday night.

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John Klein at City Hall

As you may have noticed, I’m now an aspiring politician as well as a political blogger. We’ll see how my political blogging insight/baggage/humour serves me in my upcoming race to become a Regina City Councillor. You’re invited to enjoy the show too. If you’re in Regina, I hope you’ll offer to support my campaign too, and help show it’s possible for young people who grew up blogging/facebooking to win political office (despite all of their hilarious hijinks indexed in Google). For instance, did you know I twice sold half eaten sandwiches (the first buyer has already endorsed my campaign, via Twitter)? True story. It’s also true that I can be serious when the time calls for it, so I hope my online personality is taken with a grain of salt if you’ve not met me in person.

If you want the same old Saskboy bloggin’, you’re in the right place. If you want primarily press releases and campaign updates, try my campaign website. A right wing, former SK radio producer sparked an interesting discussion on Twitter the other day about my two accounts. I described them as “channels” so viewers of Saskboy’s Abandoned Stuff don’t get too much Regina civic politics.

Here’s a handy list of declared candidates for the Regina civic election.

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In important news I’ve not had time yet to blog about, the RoboCon investigation proceeds out of view of the media. As the Etobicoke Centre election nullification demonstrates, EC has been incompetent [paperwork, and enforcing, and not losing it] on at least one front, and appears to take too much time to convict guilty Elections Act violators in other serious circumstances. Four lead investigators will never sift through the 800 serious reports of illegal phone calls made, in time to punish the benefactors and perpetrators of the crimes.

The other Elections Canada investigator whose name has surfaced in connection with the robocalls investigation is Mr. Charbonneau, though he appears to be focused on investigating possible instances of fraudulent phone calls being reported to Elections Canada outside the riding of Guelph, Ont. Based on media reports, Mr. Charbonneau has interviewed people in Thunder Bay, Toronto, and the riding of Nipissing-Timiskaming, Ont.

Once the Elections Canada investigation is complete, the findings would be turned over to Commissioner of Canada Elections William Corbett, who would then decide whether charges should be laid.

Meanwhile, Conservative MP Ted Optiz’s 2011 federal election win last year was declared null and void by an Ontario Superior Court judge on Friday, May 18. Mr. Opitz won the election by 26 votes, but former Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj challenged the election result in court over voting irregularities, according to the CBC.

Justice Thomas Lederer set aside 79 ballots in his ruling in Toronto. Mr. Optiz has eight days to appeal, according to the CBC, and if he does, the case could be heard by the Supreme Court by June.

Meanwhile, the federal Conservatives reportedly want the Federal Court to throw out the Council of Canadians’ legal challenge that claims misleading telephone calls were made in the last election in seven ridings, including: Elmwood-Transcona, Man.; Winnipeg Centre, Man.; Don Valley East, Ont.; Saskatoon-Rosetown-Biggar, Sask.; Nipissing-Timiskaming, Ont.; Vancouver Island, B.C.; and Yukon.

Will we see the Ontario Tories implicated in a new Robocalls scandal? LaRue says yes. If that happens, it’s interesting to note who the PCs’ current president is, and who he worked for prior to his latest gig organizing for Hudak’s Tories. A bit of homework for you, if you don’t know.

ConCalls: There’s More?

As we near a month since the RoboCon/Robocalls scandal burst onto the blogosphere and main stream media in a big way, there are no signs of it fading. When the breadth of the scandal is known to more Canadians, it will result in a change of government, I’m sure of that.

For some reason unknown to this point, serious violations of the Elections Act all over the country were minimized, ignored, dismissed, and forgotten by most people and the authorities entrusted to uphold the crucial machinery of our democracy. A select few journalists and bloggers have helped keep this scandal under the spotlight like it deserves, and I’m certain Pierre Poutine may be but a minor supporting character in the mess. He’s only made famous by his ridiculous alias, and for being the first to draw attention of investigators.

As you can see from any of the lists built by political parties, news sites, and bloggers, there was widespread fraud, voter harassment, and misdirection, all highly illegal acts during an election. The media goes nuts when signs are knocked down, or pamphlets are stolen, and neither of those prevents people from going to their poll. Why isn’t the media “flipping shit”?

Take a look at this list of crimes in [Toronto,] Ontario. To put it bluntly, this is the sort of crap that I never expected to see in Canada, in my lifetime. It’s profoundly disturbing, since it shows how impotent our authorities really are to protect us from corrupt political parties. An inquiry is certainly required, if not a whole lot more. I don’t expect heaven to help us, but what else can when men and women have failed so spectacularly?

Toronto and Ottawa

Toronto
From Church St. looking northish.

Ottawa 2011
View from our hotel room. We paid a little extra over the Hotwire price to get this room, but it was worth it.

Security blanket Harper
HaHarper

Ottawa
I can’t have this photo, it’s a library.

Ottawa
Ottawa
Ottawa
Saskatchewan in Parliament

Ottawa
Ottawa
Harper in photos in Parliament

Ottawa
Elizabeth May’s seat in Parliament. It’s number 309.

Ottawa
Most times I remember being here, it rained.

Ottawa
DJ Six

Wedding and Honeymoon

The weather was perfect on July 2nd, just like I told people it would be. It was less perfect today, but still awesome. The hail stones that were half the size of golf balls were problematic, at least one hitting my car in an apparently non-damaging way.

Wedding in Moose Jaw

IMG_5272

Now April and I head off into our new married life together, starting today with a flight to Ontario. We’ll see family, friends, bloggers (who are bound to become friends) and many sights.

Want to do the math?

More than 1 million new fridges could be delivered to people in Ontario for $1B.
Would that conserve the same amount of power that’s being re-built with a cost overrun of $2B? Possibly not, but you’d certainly see reduced energy use, and more people can make, and deliver, and recycle fridges than they can find jobs rebuilding a nuclear power plant.

Here are some estimates on how much energy (electricity plus other sources) a typical home uses.

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And if you’re living in the United States and have lost your job, it may be uncomfortable to know that very rich people would like to burn your house down. I never before understood what Grapes of Wrath was about; I haven’t read it yet.

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I wonder if ducks ever landed on the now famous tailing ponds in Hungary?

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It’s always a good time to point out the bald-faced hypocrisy that comes from Harper’s Conservatives. Remember this link the next time you hear a Conservative talking about a coalition government as if it’s a “coup”.

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I’m going to send this link to my friend who lost her iPhone in a field. Now she has an Android.