2017 Tobacco Company Ad-buy For YouTube

My YouTube viewing on TV was interrupted by an ad. I uncharacteristically watched it because it seemed political. It was an astroturf ad by what looked like JTI-Macdonald Corp. in the disclaimer flashed at the end of the ad, and it had a spiky haired older guy going by “Mike” (I think), who said he quit smoking on his own (unlikely, but that’s what Tobacco companies want you to believe is possible), and plain packaging is the government interfering in personal decisions. And the result, he claimed, is that illegal tobacco trade will only increase, which is at least six year old nonsense, of course. He wanted people to visit his website to write MPs and Senators.

Laughably, their Twitter bio states:

“We don’t advertise or promote our tobacco brands.”

I thought I’d mention this, since others may see the ad where JTI are surreptitiously arguing they should have the right to promote their tobacco brands. The intention is for people to not realize it’s paid for by Big Tobacco, but shot to look like a home video by a wealthy-libertarian/concerned former smoker.

This is another ad by the same astroturf campaign:

bothsidesoftheargument[dot]ca/open-fact-based-discussion-7

Yep, JTI is going to need all the money they have, for the lawsuits against tobacco companies.

Can we stamp out the tobacco threat to our health? Can we convince Regina to catch up to other municipalities?

#JeffWeCan!

First tweet was at the end of August:

bothsides-tobacco-astroturf

In conclusion, why is Big Tobacco fighting plain packaging?

SK Government Response Too Slow

“”The secrecy around pipeline spills in Saskatchewan is astonishing,” said Keith Stewart, head of Greenpeace Canada’s climate and energy campaign, in an email on Tuesday.

“First the government waits three days to announce it, then the company will neither confirm nor deny that it’s their oil. More worrisome, however, is that once again pipeline spill detection technology and systems failed, leaving it up to community members to smell and see the oil before action is taken.”

Chief Connie Big Eagle said a band member who worked in the oil industry detected the smell of crude oil days before the leak was discovered southeast of Regina.

She said the man became suspicious about the odour and went looking for the source, tracking it down and reporting it to officials last Friday.

Government officials confirmed the spill about 10 kilometres north of the southeast Saskatchewan town of Stoughton on Monday.

It said about 170,000 litres have been recovered in a cleanup being handled by Calgary-based Tundra Energy Marketing Ltd.”

Gee, I wonder why the Premier doesn’t get information available to people quickly. Maybe because Tundra gave $10000 to Wall‘s SaskParty in 2007?

Here’s some news about the company:

tundra-oil-spill-saskparty

Wikileaks: Manning Sentence Commuted to 7 years

I’m elated! Chelsea Manning is finally going to be released. Obama signed the commutation today.

Wikileaks, the anti-secrecy organisation which published the diplomatic cables, has previously said its founder Julian Assange would agree to be extradited to the US if Mr Obama granted clemency to Manning.

The White House said the Manning commutation was not influenced in any way by Mr Assange’s extradition offer.

Mr Assange, who has taken refuge in the Ecuadorian embassy in London since 2012, did not immediately comment on whether he plans to surrender.

But he did tweet: “Thank you to everyone who campaigned for Chelsea Manning’s clemency. Your courage & determination made the impossible possible.”

I think if the decision Obama made was not a prisoner exchange, then Assange doesn’t have to surrender. He’s already being illegally detained by the US extradition order they funneled through Sweden. Or, if he is sentenced to a day in prison, he’d keep his promise if he serves that time. I think a day in jail is too much for the person who stood up to the US intelligence machine and exposed some of their worst crimes.

ADDED: It’s only a shame that Edward Snowden and Jeremy Hammond can’t also be set free from their political prisons.

Too Bold A Halloween Costume

The University of Regina has quite a few exchange students. They pay more than a bit to study here in Canada too. One picked a stereotype to make fun of at Halloween, and ended up with more role playing than he bargained on.

This is the sort of over-sensitive reaction that we should be concerned about in our society, not people dressed up as something scary/funny for Halloween.

Wall Took Money From Who?

Who has the Saskatchewan Party accepted donations from? The UofR, City of Regina, Regina Public Library, etc.

Most of the cash came from oil companies such as Crescent Point, Cenovus, Encana and PennWest, though the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, the Canadian Western Bank and construction company PCL also contributed.

…The NDP last year campaigned on getting big money out of politics, and Bill 1 passed by the new government banned corporate and union donations.

…“Alberta has some of the best election finance laws in the country, but Saskatchewan is still the Wild West,” Kinney said.

How does Wall get away with it?

Presumed Albertan Joel Teeling  explains:

“Brad Wall stands up for Alberta’s interests more than our own Premier, so I have no problem with this.”
Fans of Petrostates are who run Alberta and Saskatchewan, for the most part.

Continue reading

This Morning In Police Shootings…

Murder for $10,000

“How does a person charged with murder get bail for $10,000?”

There are some people in Saskatchewan who think* like this:

“In my mind his only mistake was leaving witnesses,” is one troubling post that appeared online.

*Racism is not thinking, it’s a feeling like fear and anger.

Here’s another theory about the bail.

The weekend wasn’t all negative though.