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Well a historic election has just taken place in Canada. The Bloc was decimated in Quebec, and almost wiped off the map. Newfoundland told Conservatives what to do with themselves. The Greater Toronto Area is painted blue and Toronto has gone NDP Orange. Also, it looks like we have our very first Green member of Parliament. So what went wrong for the Liberals? They took their support for granted. Canadians were looking for change and they did not see it in the Liberals, in Ontario. Yes, there was a lot of vote splitting, however lets be honest. Ontario has been red for a long time. This is a breakthrough for the Conservatives in Ontario. The question is, can they live up to that support?
The G.T.A is an important battleground and they better take note. As for the NDP, they better not take their Quebec support for granted. The Bloc imploded, Liberals were yesterdays news and they did not like the Conservatives. So we are left with the NDP. Jack the time to start working is now. As for the Liberals, there is a lot of soul searching.
However I will offer this advice to all parties. (1) Liberals, you need to go back to your roots. Your party is not dead. I’d rather say that it is in hibernation and healing. Canadian’s have not forgotten you, rather the opposite happened. You forgot them. Remember who you are and what you stand for. Otherwise, what is the point of the Liberal Party. It is time for you to reconnect. (2) NDP you have been given the chance to prove your worth, so do not disappoint. From the people I have spoken to many parked their vote with the NDP. Also, in Ontario, people simply love and trust Jack Layton. It will be important, despite a majority Conservative government, that the NDP choose their battles well and fight for those who voted for them. Less we forget, as often Canadians do! (3) Conservatives fought a simple and straight-forward campaign. You delivered your message and Canadians listened. We are concerned about the economy and trust in that has been given to you. However, do not take that trust for granted. A lot of Canadians still do not trust the Conservative Party and a lot of seats were gained from vote splitting. Be careful how you govern. Canadians are watching. Do not slip to the right with arrogance. As Harper said, keep a steady ship. If you can prove your worth maybe your quality will be remembered. (4) Finally, to Elizabeth May and the Green Party. You have made Canadian history! Despite the media ignoring you, thank you for running and not giving up. The Green Party should be a wake up call to ALL parties. People voted for Elizabeth May and the Greens across Canada. Their ideas and policies should not be ignored! Summed up in Elizabeth May’s own words “amateurs built the ark and professionals built the Titanic”. People are wary in Canada and if the status-quo parties cannot deliver, Canadians may decide someone else can.
Congrats to Prime Minister Harper, who has finally gotten a majority government for the Conservative Party. We will all watch, wait and see what policies are implemented and what happens in the next Parliament. See you in 2015!
By Mannee Jay
Asbestos is a mineral with long, thin fibrous crystals. The word asbestos (῾ἀσβεστος) is derived from a Greek adjective meaning inextinguishable. The Greeks termed asbestos the miracle mineral because of its soft and pliant properties, as well as its ability to withstand heat.
Asbestos is known to have toxicity. The inhalation of toxic asbestos fibers can cause serious illnesses, including malignant mesothelioma, lung cancer, and asbestosis (also called pneumoconiosis). Since the mid 1980s, many uses of asbestos have been banned in many countries.
Canada’s deadly trade in asbestos
by Mark Bourrie
Canada is starting work this summer on a billion dollar project to renovate its parliamentary buildings and cleanse them of asbestos, which has been found to cause cancer.
The project will take six years to complete but, in the meantime, Canadian government agents are still pushing exports of the fibre. Canada even has gone so far as to argue a challenge at the World Trade Organization that a proposed French ban on asbestos imports would be an illegal trade practice.
Despite recent warnings that asbestos was the cause of 500,000 cancer victims in western Europe alone, Canadian asbestos producers continue to promote and sell their fibre worldwide – especially to developing nations.
Asbestos is used as a binder in cement, as insulation, and in anti-fire walls. It is also a potent carcinogen with a long, well-documented legacy of death.
The danger comes when small asbestos fibres are released and inhaled by labourers. The fibres cause cancerous growths in the lungs, lung lining and abdomen but can take 20 years or more to manifest.
In 1997, Canada exported 430,000 tonnes of asbestos – more than 96% of production – most of it to the developing world. Canada is the world’s second-largest exporter of asbestos after Russia.
Union activists, who have visited India and other developing countries say, however, that the public relations efforts of the government and the asbestos industry are simply window-dressing to hide the fact that most people who work with the natural mineral fibre risk cancer.
Critics of Canada’s asbestos exports say the country is exporting death to protect the profits of a handful of companies and the jobs of 1,600 miners.
“What’s the difference between land mines and asbestos?” asks Dr. Barry Castleman, author of a respected book on the danger of asbestos. “A key difference, of course, is that Canada doesn’t export land mines.”
At the heart of the issue is Canada’s own precarious political situation. All of the asbestos mines in Canada are in Quebec, a predominantly French-speaking province with a separatist government.
Federal and provincial politicians are pushing asbestos exports to prove that they are successful at developing overseas markets, and are protective of Quebec workers. Critics of asbestos exports say the industry would probably be allowed to die if it was centred in any other part of the country.
“Personally, I believe this is all about Quebec politics,” says Canadian Auto Workers Health and Safety director Cathy Walker. “The Canadian and Quebec governments are competing with one another to show just how prepared they all are to protect Quebec jobs.”
The real costs will be borne by the developing world, she says.
Walker just returned from India, where she saw unprotected workers slashing open bags of asbestos fibres. In places where the asbestos was being mixed into cement, clouds of the carcinogenic fibres swirled around workers.
In Britain, the Cancer Research Campaign said in January that its study into the European asbestos-linked cancer epidemic should sound alarm bells everywhere, “particularly in the developing world where uncontrolled asbestos is still very common,” said CRC director Gordon McVie.
Seven of Canada’s top 10 markets are Third World countries. Still, the Canadian government, the asbestos industry and lobby groups are trying to put a good face on the asbestos industry.
Recently, diplomats stationed here were flown to asbestos- producing regions on an all-expense-paid first-class junket.
OTTAWA — Early figures indicate Canadians avoided the ballot box more than ever before on election day.
Just 58 per cent of eligible voters visited the polls — from a high of 69 per cent in Prince Edward Island to 48 per cent in Newfoundland, according to preliminary numbers.
In my estimation, these are the errors each leader made during this campaign. They are in no particular order, however I welcome your comments.
1. Called the election in the first place, knowing that Canadians wanted the minority government to remain, as is. We wanted everyone to work “together”.
2. The perceived indifference to voters and the electorate during these tough economic times.
3. Hoping to get the election done, before the market meltdown, the Conservatives hoped to get a majority government.
4. Telling Canadians that there were “good deals to be made on the stock market now”.
5. Trying to give leeway, albeit the judges, and more options in allowing 14 year old criminals to be placed as adults in court or placing them in jail for longer periods of time.
6. Cutting off Arts funding and then flip-flopping on that plan. He totally misread the importance of this issue, and the crime bill, in Quebec.
7. The “optics”, no matter how true it may be, of telling Canadians that the “fundementals are sound“. A leader must be able to tell Canadians that he/she will do something, even if nothing is to be done. Canadians need that assurance, however you may feel about that situtation.
8. Offering no ease to the manufacturing section or some kind of plan. People are hurting and loosing jobs in Ontario and Quebec. The perception is that he is uncaring. I know that this is not true, but the the optics are bad.
1. The Green Shift. You may agree with it, however it needed to be implemented in a different fashion. The economic meltdown has destroyed this plan (albeit unfairly). You need to explain it in layman terms. Just give us the basics. They allowed the Conservatives to control the message. Carbon taxes are not a bad thing and even conservative economists believe it is the best way to deal with taxes. This reminds me of the religious school funding issue in Ontario and how it played out.
2. The unfair perception of Leadership in this campaign. Somehow the Liberals needed to fix that.
3. Not offering clear and precise answers to Canadian voters.
4. Again restoring to “don’t split the vote and vote for the Greens or NDP“. The scaremongering was low! Yes, they just came to my door and told me that and it really pissed me off! This is a democracy, I will vote based on the issues and who “I” feel is the best option for Canada. I do not vote based on fear.
5. The anybody but Harper campaign. I am starting to wonder, can you not offer anything better than that? Old tactics, which makes me believe that they are worried about Jack Layton.
1. Should have “never” tried to stop Elizabeth May and the Greens from appearing in the debate.
2. They should have got their message out even more in the media. Tell people what you are going to do.
1. Going after a blogger for trying to post a video/audio of her telling Canadians that they were “too stupid”. If you listened to the entire phrase you would understand that she was actually making sense. However, this is a free Country and threatening a mere blogger is a pretty junior mistake. let people decide for themselves.
1. There biggest mistake is ignoring the NDP in Quebec. They may be in for a surprise come election day.
2. Not running candidates outside of Quebec.
3. Instead of looking for a way to break up the Country, find a cause of unify the country with Quebec culture. I will never understand, if we are a bilingual country, why we were not ingrained in learning French while growing up. Look at some of the European countries and how successful those strategies are.
In the end I cannot tell you who will win and loose. It is too close to call. I know what would happen if people voted how they wanted to. I can only say that Elizabeth May and Jack Layton seemed to perform the best. They had the least amount of gaffs and missteps. The Dion and Harper have not looked good through this election. I sense that the electorate would love to punish both of them and send the NDP and Greens to Parliament in force. However I sense the fear. Even though they want to vote Green or NDP they fear giving the Liberals or Conservatives a majority. The Liberals have done a good job and swaying voters in that manner. That is not a democratic ideal. Our soilders fought in wars for YOUR FREEDOM TO VOTE, so use it! Vote you conscience! Canada will go on no matter which major party is in power. Although I do not agree with his policies, Harper is NOT the devil.
You should not fear making any mistakes when voting. There are no mistakes when you vote based on your conviction and what you believe makes Canada better. If you want to vote Green than do so. If you want to vote for Jack Layton and the NDP, than do so. For the day we start voting based on fear, it is no longer a democracy! it is not longer Canada.
By: Andy MJ
a.k.a The G.T.A Patriot
GATINEAU—NDP Leader Jack Layton today urged Quebec voters to turn their backs on the separatist Bloc Quebecois.
“There’s a new choice for Quebec in this election – a choice of hope and optimism,” he said, adding the province would benefit in many ways from a national party, as opposed to one that has no MPs outside Quebec.
Layton pointed out many things that Quebecers hold dearly, such as the environment, that require strong actions across provincial boundaries that can only be offered by a national party.
The NDP is hoping to make a breakthrough in the riding of Gatineau with Francoise Boivin, a former Liberal MP in the Paul Martin/s Liberal government. The riding is now held by the PQ’s Richard Nadeau.
Throughout the election, Layton has been appealing to voters of all political stripes to side with the NDP, promising a New Democratic government would kill the Conservatives’ $50 billion corporate tax cut and use that money to improve child care, hire nurses and doctors, and bring in pharmacare, among other things.
Earlier in the day in Toronto, the NDP campaign turned to veteran New Democrat war horse Ed Broadbent to shore up support.
“It is good news for the NDP in every part of the country,” he told the adoring crowd, adding that the party is challenging in 20 ridings where the NDP have never been a contenders.
“We will bring in new seat after seat and we will have the largest caucus in the history (of the party),” Broadbent, who had a record 43 seats in 1988, told about 400 supporters.
You can’t do your job as Leader of the Opposition. I don’t know what you’re doing running for Prime Minister. It’s a very unusual political situation when every voter knows even before the federal election that Canada’s next prime minister will be Stephen Harper. Like or loathe it, the Conservatives will be returned to power on October 14.
But two other important questions are far from decided – who will be Opposition leader and whether it will be a minority or majority government.
After last week’s debate and two years of Harper government one thing is very clear – the only real federal opposition in the House of Commons is the New Democratic Party. And the only real choice for Opposition leader is Jack Layton.
Liberal leader Stephane Dion is a smart, decent man. But Dion and the Liberals don’t stand up to Stephen Harper – they prop him up.
On 43 separate occasions in Parliament, Dion’s Liberals voted to keep Harper in power and accept his very conservative legislation.
By continually abstaining, the “Official Opposition” has abdicated its important role of serving the majority of Canadians who reject Conservative ideology.
But it wasn’t just fear of losing an election that led to the Liberals becoming Conservative Lite – they actually agree with Harper’s wrong-headed positions on many key political issues.
Dion and the Liberals support Harper’s massive $50 billion corporate tax cuts that reward companies which have eliminated more than 400,000 manufacturing and forest industry jobs since 2000.
And the Liberals and Conservatives want huge tax cuts despite the fact that Canada’s tax rates are already lower than many industrialized nations, including the United States, Germany, Italy and Japan.
And Canada also has a much lower Goods and Services Tax than most countries.
Dion and the Liberals joined with Conservatives to vote to extend till 2011 the deadly mission that sent brave Canadian troops into a hopeless situation in Afghanistan.
Dion and the Liberals say they want a “Green Shift” and carbon tax to protect the environment but oppose a proposed NDP moratorium on new Alberta tar sands oil projects – Canada’s biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper was on the defensive yesterday over the remarks of a Conservative MP who undermined his historic apology to aboriginal peoples by questioning “the value for all this money” survivors of residential schools are eligible to receive under a compensation settlement.
Pierre Poilievre, the Nepean-Carleton MP who serves as parliamentary secretary, expressed regret for his “hurtful and wrong” comments in the House of Commons just moments before question period. But his brief apology had little impact on Liberal MPs, who branded his remarks disgraceful and racist and demanded he step down as parliamentary secretary to the president of the treasury board.
Assembly of First Nations Chief Phil Fontaine said in an interview the remarks were “just really unfortunate” distractions from Mr. Harper’s apology, which was, in part, “about casting aside old attitudes and old stereotypes” like the ones Mr. Poilievre expressed. Chief Fontaine, who praised the apology during an appearance in the Senate with other aboriginal leaders, said the government apology remains “the important moment,” despite the MP’s remarks.
Mr. Poilievre also suggested aboriginals need to work harder rather than receive more money. He appeared unaware the $1.9-billion compensation settlement is the result of years of negotiations by government, churches and aboriginal representatives. The talks are aimed at reducing and containing a growing number of lawsuits over the mistreatment, including widespread physical and sexual assaults, of several generations of aboriginal children.
Response letter to CTV New cast Sept 11th, 2008 Re: “Fringe parties excluded”
Dr. David Suzuki spoke on Canada AM Thrusday morning September 11th, to promote his new book on the enviroment. He was asked about the Green party leader, Elizabeth May, and her participating in the leader’s debate. To paraphrase Mr. Suzuki he stated that GREEN values should be integral in all political parties, and because it is not, we need the Green Party. With the Green Party included in the debates the environment will definitely be an issue during the leaders’s debate.
The First Peoples National Party (FPNP), Canada’s newest offical and federal party is also excluded from the debate. The FPNP ran 5 candidates in the last election with more votes collectly then most of the other small parties. When these small official federal parties are labled “Fringe” parties by the media and excluded from the debate where is the democracy?
Canada’s First Peoples are the only ethnic group governed separately then the rest of the Canadians and under the responsibility of the federal government. Therefore, the First Peoples are Canada’s unifying element. The Bloc Quebecois on the other hand are a non-federalist political party with a goal to separate from Canada. They will be included in this debate.
Canada’s First Peoples are not part of the political system and is the reason why the First Peoples National Party (FPNP) was formed. Any country that excludes its indigenous peoples from its political system is a colonial society.
Inspired and formed by Canada’s First Peoples the FPNP is the only party that can be truly called a National Federal Party yet we are left out of this national debate. The First Peoples values of inclusion is the reason why Canada exists today. It is this value of inclusion that guides the FPNP and our policies.
Just as Mr. Suzuki suggested of the Green Party, the FPNP has the MORAL RIGHT to be included in the national leader’s debate. Only then would the centuries old injustices be addressed and healing for all Canadians can begin.
The First Peoples National Party is putting people first, giving voice to all people. No other federal party can say that. Until those voices are heard by all Canadians we don’t live in a democracy.
Eastern Director FPNP
Offical FPNP Candidate, Sudbury, Ontario
1-705-561-8004, toll free: 1-877-248-4133
Well in case you “really” need to know, some details on the parties asking for your votes in this upcoming election are below.
The Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada was founded in 2005 and the current leader is Liz White. Their headquarters are in Toronto Ontario and currently hold no seats, nor historically have they ever won a seat in the House of Commons. “Animal Alliance of Canada is committed to the protection of all animals and the promotion of a harmonious relationship among people, animals and the environment.” View their official website at – www.animalalliance.ca
The Bloc Quebecois are a centre-left party that is devoted to the goal of sovereignty for Quebec. It only runs candidates in Quebec and does currently have seats in Parliament. Founded in 1991 the current party leader is Gilles Duceppe. The party headquarters are in Montreal Quebec. Visit their official website at www.blocquebecois.org
Canadian Action Party
Former federal defence minister Paul Hellyer founded the Canadian Action Party in 1997. The current party leader is Connie Fogal, and they have their headquarters in Vancouver British Columbia. CAP currently does not have any members of Parliament, nor have they had any elected in the past. The Canadian Action Party is a nationalist party and their website can be found at www.canadianactionparty.ca
Christian Heritage Party
Looking for Canada to be governed according to biblical teachings, the Christian Heritage Party of Canada was founded in 1987. The current leader of the party is Ron Gray, and the headquarters for the party is located in Ottawa Ontario. The CHP has not won any seats in Parliament in its history. Visit the CHP website at www.chp.ca
Communist Party of Canada
Even though the Communist Party of Canada has no seats in the federal Parliament, it has been able to influence through the courts Canada’s electoral laws, making them more democratic and inclusive. The Communist Party of Canada’s leader is Miguel Figueroa, and the party was founded in May 1921. Party headquarters are in Toronto Ontario and the official website can be found at www.communist-party.ca
Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada
Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada as it is known for official election purposes, prefers the party be called CPC-ML – Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist). Founded in 1970, the party has no seats in the Canadian House of Commons and is headquartered in Montreal Quebec. Visit the official site at www.mlpc.ca
Conservative Party of Canada
The Conservative Party of Canada is a creation of the merger of both the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada. The merger of the parties took place in December 2003 after the Conservative Party Agreement-in-Principle between the current Prime Minister Stephen Harper (then leader of the CA), and Peter MacKay (then leader of the Progressive Conservative Party). The party currently forms the government of Canada in a minority position. Party headquarters are in Ottawa Ontario, and the party’s official website is www.conservative.ca
First Peoples National Party
Advancing the issues of the Aboriginal peoples in Canada, the First Peoples National Party of Canada, or FPNPC, was founded in 2005. The party nominates candidates in ridings with large Aboriginal populations, but have yet to win a seat in the House of Commons. The party headquarters are in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario. Visit the official website at www.fpnpoc.ca
Green Party of Canada
The largest of the federally registered political parties without seats in the House of Commons, the Green Party of Canada was founded in 1983 around a green platform. The current party leader is Elizabeth May, and the party headquarters are in Ottawa Ontario. The Greens ran candidates in every riding in the last two federal elections. The official site for the Green Party can be found at www.greenparty.ca
Canada’s oldest continuously running federal political party is the Liberal Party of Canada. Founded July 1, 1867, the Liberal Party has often been the party to lead Canada. This centre-left party has its headquarters in Ottawa Ontario, and is currently the Official Opposition in the Canadian Parliament. Current party leader is Stephane Dion, and the official website can be found at www.liberal.ca
The Libertarian Party of Canada was founded in 1975 and is headquartered in Embrun Ontario. Adhering to libertarian tenets the party has yet to win any seats in the House of Commons. The party leader is Jean-Serge Brisson and the official website is www.libertarian.ca
With a goal to end the prohibition of cannabis, Marc-Boris St-Maurice founded the Marijuana Party of Canada in 2000. The current party leader is Blair T. Longley, and the party headquarters are in Osoyoos British Columbia. The Marijuana Party does not have seats in the House of Commons but has been instrumental in changing Canada’s electoral laws. The party website is www.marijuanaparty.com
The New Democratic Party
The New Democratic Party, which was founded on June 17, 1961, currently holds seats in the House of Commons and forms the governments of Manitoba and Saskatchewan. The federal NDP are a centre-left party lead by Jack Layton, and the party headquarters are in Ottawa Ontario. Visit the federal NDP website at www.ndp.ca
Progressive Canadian Party
Members of the former Progressive Conservative Party of Canada who opposed the party merger with the Canadian Alliance founded the Progressive Canadian Party in March 2004. The Progressive Conservative Party of Canada, or PC Party, currently has no seats in Parliament and is lead by Sinclair Stevens. The party headquarters are in Toronto Ontario. The PC Party official website is www.progressivecanadian.org
With Liberal leader Dion faltering and lagging behind Jack Layton in the polls, one has to wonder if change is in the air? We are already seeing old Liberal tactics; telling people not to split the vote, and cause a majority Conservative government. One has to ask, if this is the ONLY tactic they have to remain as the official opposition than maybe it is time for change? The Liberals are getting old and there is a sense amongst voters that it is “time for change” in Canada. Elizabeth May was seen as a possible alternative, however there is the feeling that they are in league with the Liberals, tainting the green image. Who knows what will happen on October the 14th, but one thing is clear, change is in the air. I am not sure if Canada is really ready to have an NDP government in Canada. The experience in Ontario maybe scaring individual voters, however I guess it does not matter since Bob Rae is now a Liberal? Maybe Bob Rae was never truly an NDP backer and we have never really seen what an NDP government can do. The question is, can Jack Layton deliver? Is it time for change? Is it time to for the new world of NDP Orange? Is it time for Prime Minister Jack Layton?
By: Andy MJ / a.k.a The G.T.A Patriot
Read more about the NDP Party of Canada below.
Through three decades of public service, and as Leader of Canada’s New Democrats since 2003, Jack Layton is delivering the kind of change that can make life better for you and your family.
Months after taking his place in Parliament, Jack Layton successfully rewrote the 2005 federal budget. In place of $4.6-billion in corporate tax giveaways, Layton secured investments in better priorities—affordable housing, training, public transit, energy efficiency, development assistance and wage protection.
At last: this was policy from the kitchen table, not the boardroom table, and ordinary Canadians responded.