Tuesday 30 September 2008

Monday 29 September 2008

Harper Refusing to Respond to "Make Poverty History"

Prime Minister Stephen Harper is the only national party leader who is refusing to respond to questions from "Make Poverty History" respecting his party's position on fighting poverty in Canada. What's the matter Mr. Prime Minister? Too busy?

Check out the Make Poverty History Election Campaign here....

Why is Stephen Harper refusing to say what he plans to do about poverty?

Other Canadian political leaders go 'On the Record' about poverty.

See all videos here

Sunday 28 September 2008

Harper soft on white collar crime - CUPE

There's a very good article on the cupe.ca web-site entitled: "Harper soft on white collar crime". It shows the glaring contradiction between how our Prime Minister proposes to get tough on youth crime - while he and his government look the other way when it comes to corporate crime.

Here are the opening 2 paragraphs:

"Stephen Harper has no problem sentencing 14 year-olds to life in prison. As for his gang of merry corporate supporters who have fleeced hardworking Canadians for billions? They have a better chance of getting locked up in the U.S.

It’s not that Canada is devoid of white collar crime – Canadian workers and taxpayers have paid a high price for made-in-Canada market fraud and abuse. It’s just that our politicians would rather enable corporate criminals than hold them accountable."
read more....

Striking Saskatchewan Potash Workers create web site to explain dispute

United Steelworker (USW) members employed by the Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan who have been on the picket line since August 7, 2008 have created a web site to share information about the ongoing dispute.

Check out the site at: www.potashworkers.com

Palin/Couric - Actual Interview vs SNL Spoof

Compare the actual interview between Katie Couric and Sarah Palin and the Saturday Night Live version:

The SNL version Interview:

The actual CBS Interview:

Part 1:

Watch CBS Videos Online

Part 2:

Watch CBS Videos Online

Saturday 27 September 2008

Sarah Palin Disney Trailer - CHTV

Wall Street meltdown caused by deregulation, corporate corruption and influence peddling

The current crisis in the U.S. financial system - which will likely result in average tax-paying American citizens being left holding the bag in a nearly one trillion dollar bailout of Wall Street - is, quite simply, the fault of greedy unregulated and corrupt corporations and the corrupt politicians that they control.

Meanwhile, right-wing politicians and right-wing political parties in Canada constantly worship at the alter of the U.S. Republicans. They long to be leaders of a country that emulates our neighbours to the south. Deregulation, privatization, so called free-trade, 'for profit' health care - these are all things that Canadian tories hold up as the systems they believe in.

The fact is - down in the United States, where the economic system is on the verge of collapse, 10's of millions of people have no health-care, millions are being driven into personal bankruptcy, millions risk losing their homes, millions more live homeless and in poverty, and cities like New Orleans still struggle to repair the damage caused by a hurricane that occurred over 3 years ago.

Nevertheless, the country has a trillion dollars to wage never-ending war, and another trillion dollars to bail out never-ending corporate greed.

Read the following article which appeared on truthout.org and the L.A. Times: Keating Five Ring a Bell?

You want to live in a country like that? Elect Stephen Harper as Prime Minister with a majority and it can all be yours.

Canwest: Media Bully - Seriously Free Speech - WorkingTV

Check out www.seriouslyfreespeech.ca

and http://www.workingtv.com/main3.html

Friday 26 September 2008

The Harper Record - New Book - CCPA

The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) has released a new book entitled "The Harper Record". The book is available for full download on the CCPA web-site. For more information about the book click here....

"This book is one in a series of CCPA publications that have examined the records of Canadian federal governments during the duration of their tenure. As with earlier CCPA reports on the activities of previous governments while in office, this book gives a detailed account of the laws, policies, regulations, and initiatives of the Conservative minority government under Prime Minister Stephen Harper during its 32-month term from January 2006 to September 2008." read more....

Wednesday 24 September 2008

SFL takes next step against Bills 5 and 6 at ILO

The Saskatchewan Federation of Labour has taken another step in defense of the rights of workers in the province.

The SFL has delivered its arguments against the Sask. Party government's assault on worker and human rights to the International Trade Union Confederation. The ITUC will then deliver a report on behalf of Canada, containing the SFL’s arguments, to the International Labour Organization (ILO) Committee of Experts.

This action by the SFL will put the case against the behaviour of the Sask. Party Government in front of an additional committee of the ILO - the Committee of Experts. There is already a complaint against the Sask. Party Government filed with the ILO Committe on Freedom of Association. That first complaint has also been supported by the SFL - see here.

The SFL news release about the most recent action is reproduced below and can be downloaded in PDF format by clicking here....

SFL takes next step against Bills 5 and 6 at ILO

For immediate release September 25, 2008

In an additional step in the defense of workers’ human rights, the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL) has now delivered its arguments against Bills 5 and 6 to the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC). The ITUC, the world’s largest trade union federation, represents 166 million workers through its 309 affiliated organizations within 156 countries and territories.

The General Secretary of the ITUC will deliver a report on behalf of Canada, containing the SFL’s arguments, to the International Labour Organization (ILO) Committee of Experts shortly.

“The SFL is pleased that the ITUC is bringing forward our concerns to the Committee of Experts. We expect that the Committee will agree that Canada is not complying with its international obligations as a result of the Saskatchewan Party government’s attacks on workers’ rights,” says Larry Hubich, President of the SFL.
The ILO Committee of Experts oversees countries’ general levels of compliance with international obligations. They then present their findings to an international convention of leaders and experts.

The ITUC’s report will argue that in passing Bill 5, the Wall government “makes freedom of association a right solely to be given and taken away at the whim of employers, including the largest employer in Saskatchewan, the government.”

The ITUC will also submit that the amendments to the Trade Union Act (Bill 6) weaken the rights of workers and unions to organize into associations, and that it potentially permits employers to use coercive means to stop the formation of union associations, and to potentially punish workers for engaging in union associational activities.

“The Committee of Experts is another way for us to hold the Wall government accountable for its failure to consult with labour organizations before ramming through these union-busting laws. We are very interested in hearing how this government’s actions hold up to international scrutiny,” adds Hubich.

The SFL represents nearly 95,000 unionized workers from 37 affiliated unions in Saskatchewan.

Wednesday 17 September 2008

Mr. Prime Minister, It's time for you to dismiss the likes of Ritz and Lukiwski

Mr. Ritz and Mr. Lukiwski you both need to leave public office. You are embarrassing the people of Saskatchewan.

Various reported quotes of Mr. Ritz:

"I made an insensitive and inappropriate remark about the (listeriosis) outbreak and Member of Parliament Wayne Easter. Earlier today, I called Mr. Easter to apologize,"

"I also want to apologize to anyone who was hurt by what I said, especially those who were directly affected by this situation."

"I made a couple of spur-of-the-moment offhand comments, in particular, one about my official Opposition critic to whom I have already apologized. My comments were tasteless and completely inappropriate."

Various reported quotes of Mr. Lukiwski:
"If I could take those comments back, I would." "I would give anything to take those comments back. They do not reflect the type of person that I am. I can only say that on behalf of myself, my family and my children, I am sorry. I am ashamed."

"I was stupid, thoughtless and insensitive."

"The comments I made should not be tolerated in any society, they should not be tolerated today, they should not have been tolerated in 1991, they should not have been tolerated in the years previous to that."

"I deeply regret and I have deep remorse for my words of 17 years ago, but I can assure you . . . that I will spend the rest of my life, my career . . . trying to make up for those shameless comments."

Health Facilities Flush Estimated 250 Million Pounds of Drugs a Year

Check out this article on Truthout.org --- Shocking!

"Millions of pounds of unused and expired pharmaceuticals are flushed down the drain across the United States annually by the health services industry. Traces of these drugs are found in the nation's drinking water supplies, affecting at least 46 million Americans, and in rivers and streams where they harm aquatic wildlife species. (Photo: Getty Images)"

Monday 15 September 2008

Saskatchewan Union of Nurses launches Charter Challenge against Wall government

Today the Saskatchewan Union of Nurses (SUN) launched a constitutional legal challenge against the Brad Wall government's contemptuous assault on the Charter Rights of workers in this province.

As a first order of business, following election of his party in late 2007, Premier Brad Wall and his collegues introduced two pieces of legislation which attack the constitutional rights of workers in Saskatchewan. These worker rights are enshrined through numerous provisions of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

SUN's charges against the Sask. Party government are yet another condemnation of this government. A government that continues to arrogantly refuse to acknowledge it's legal responsibility to consult, in a meaningful way, with the democratic organizations that workers have formed to advocate collectively on their behalf.

Further information respecting the SFL ILO Complaint is available here....

Back Door Alberta/Sask TILMA?

Blogger Joe Kuchta over at the Owls and Roosters Blog has recently posted a comprehensive analysis of the recently inked "Alberta-Saskatchewan Protocol of Cooperation" signed by Premiers Brad Wall (Sask.) and Ed Stelmach (Alberta).

Kuchta holds the so-called agreement signed by Wall and Stelmach side by side with a similar agreement, signed in 2003, between B.C. and Alberta called the "Protocol of Cooperation - Between the Government of Alberta and the Government of British Columbia" which led directly to the back room, closed door, secret signing of the anti-democratic BC/Alberta Trade Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement (TILMA).

In his posting, entitled: "TILMA: Alberta-Saskatchewan Protocol of Cooperation eerily similar to Oct. 2003 BC-Alberta agreement that led to controversial trade deal", Kuchta alerts readers to the glaring similarities between what occured in the lead-up to the seriously flawed BC/Alberta TILMA, and the recent meeting between Wall and Stelmach.

Is this an example of a flip-flopping Premier who is trying to sneak through the back door what he was afraid to bring through the front door?

Saturday 13 September 2008

Friday 12 September 2008

Tuesday 9 September 2008

The Definition of SOLIDARITY!

In what can only be described as a shining example of Solidarity, locked out members of Grain Services Union (GSU) who have been in a fight for survival against the Regina, Saskatchewan based corporate bully and grain company "Viterra, Inc." made a donation to the strike fund of the United Steelworkers (USW) on strike against Saskatchewan based global potash giant (and also corporate bully) "Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan".

Reproduced is a letter I received on September 8, 2008 from GSU General Secretary, Hugh Wagner:

Brother Larry Hubich and
Delegates to the Annual SFL OH&S Conference

Sisters and Brothers,

Re: Grain Services Union picket line

Your attendance today at our picket line at Viterra head office together with the solidarity and enthusiasm you brought have done so much to bolster the morale of GSU members who have been on the line since July 7.

Words alone can't express how you have touched the hearts and raised the spirits of GSU members who are fighting the good fight. Thank you from the bottom of all of our hearts for your solidarity.

As a token of our appreciation, please be advised that GSU is making an intial donation of $1,000 to the strike fund of our sisters and brothers who are on strike at the Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan. In addition, we are sending five GSU t-shirts for you to raffle at your conference in aid of any cause that you choose.

On Behalf of the Women and Men of GSU
Hugh J. Wagner
General Secretary
You can download a PDF version of the above letter by clicking here.....

Viterra management and supporters resort to assault and violence against GSU picketers

Two recent issues of the Grain Services Union strike bulletin: The GSU Review reveals a disturbing and unacceptable trend. Viterra management and their supporters have resorted to violent assaults and physical attacks against GSU members who are engaged in lawful picket activity.

Click on the above images to download copies of both the September 5 issue, and the September 8 issue.

Hey Viterra - it's time to call off the goons!

Saturday 6 September 2008

Rachel Kleinfeld: Progressive Framework for National Security

This segment is a bit dated (January 2007), nonetheless, it is extremely interesting. Rachel Kleinfeld is the Executive Director at Truman National Security Project.

Wednesday 3 September 2008

SFL files historic international complaint against Brad Wall government

As Saskatchewan citizens were just starting to kick back and enjoy the 2008 Labour Day weekend, the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour and an additional 21 national and provincial labour organizations were filing an historic complaint against the Brad Wall government with the International Labour Organization (an agency of the United Nations).

Never before, not even during the darkest days of the most corrupt government in Saskatchewan history (i.e. the Grant Devine conservative government), has such a large and impressive number of unions been forced to take the elected government to court, and/or to an international tripartite body such as the ILO to ensure that their members human rights are respected.


See Leader-Post coverage here: Sask. labour group files complaint

From the news release:

"We firmly believe that the ILO Committee on Freedom of Association will find that the actions of the Saskatchewan government run afoul of Canada’s international obligations and commitments. Part of those commitments is to ensure that workers are free to join unions of their own choosing and to engage in free collective bargaining without undo influence from either employers or government," Hubich added. "At a time when human rights are increasingly topical on the global agenda, the Sask. Party government’s attack on workers’ rights is embarrassing.”

Arrested at the RNC - The Real News

Amy Goodman talks about being detained at the Republican National Convention.

See and read more by clicking here....

Tuesday 2 September 2008

Naomi Klein to speak in Regina - Sept 23

Naomi Klein, author of the New York Times bestseller: The Shock Doctrine: The Rise Of Disaster Capitalism, will be speaking at a public lecture in Regina, Sask. on September 23, 2008. This will be a "DO NOT MISS" event.