Author Topic: Canada-US  (Read 20119 times)

Crafty_Dog

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Canada-US
« on: January 01, 2012, 04:23:22 PM »
Some good and interesting posts have been made in the last couple of days on the Political Economics thread and we are blessed to have Canadian Tricky Dog chiming in.  Lets continue that conversation here.

Not only are the Canadians our very good friends and neighbors, our cultures, our legal systems, and our political systems all originated principally in England.  This seems to me to lessen the usual amount of static that comes from cross-cultural comparisons.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2012, 05:21:48 PM by Crafty_Dog »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2012, 05:19:36 PM »
I would kick things off my challenging the oft-stated notion that Canada survived the bubble due to regulations they have that we do not.

While partially true (and I have begun to reconsider my inattention to our repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act sp?) I think this blurs a very important point-- that it was precisely the intervention of our government via the FMs guaranteeing loans, CRAP (Community Reinvestment Act Program which forced banks to lend to the unqualified in the name of racial parity of results) and the deranged interest rate policy of the Fed that created the bubble.


trickydog

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2012, 06:13:01 PM »
So regardless of whether you blame the government or the corporations for the American experience, you are essentially concluding from the Canadian experience that, in general, strong regulation is needed for financial services?

Thus the need is for better government, whether or not that means less government?  Regulation necessarily means bureaucracy.

Or is there a free-market  (i.e. unregulated) solution to keep banks from doing this again?

 

trickydog

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Canadian corporate tax breaks - and stagnant private money
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2012, 06:30:31 PM »
As mentioned in the previous thread (Political Economics), the Harper government in Canada just dropped corporate taxes by 1.5% to 15%.  That will equate roughly to 33 billion annually given back to Canadian corporations.

Harper has recently been complaining about the 3/4 trillion sitting in corporate coffers stagnant - most enterprises sitting back during the rough economic times to hold onto their surpluses.  This break will allow them to hold even more money stagnant. 

The assumption seems to be that corporations are going to spend us out of tough times by growing, investing, and otherwise freeing up those stagnant funds.  But that does not really seem to be happening.  Like spooked consumers, they are sitting on the money to see how this plays out.  Which of course just drags out the recovery.

In the case of consumers, you can sometimes get them to start spending even when they probably should remain cautious or work hard at reducing their debt.  Corporations on the other hand are run by some of the most saavy financial types to be found.  They know better than most when to move and when to sit still (although no guarantee of good sense).  And you can expect corps to do what is best whether they get a tax break or not.

I can see the long term benefit of tax breaks - attracting more foreign business, encouraging investment and innovation, etc.  But in a stale or limping economy where the future is uncertain, I do not see why this is a good move, at least in the short term.  Why would corps start spending significantly under these circumstances?  The only real use of corp reserves seems to be the usual M&A activity that accompanies a slow economy.

So is there any reasonable expectation that lowered corp taxes will help jump start an ailing economy?



G M

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2012, 06:36:35 PM »
No matter if it's the US, Canada or Hong Kong, I think there is a desire and need for some degree of regulation of financial markets. In designing systems that have a important role, it's important to structure the system so it fails gracefully rather than catastrophically. As business failure is a required element of a free market (creative destruction), it makes sense that there should not be such a thing as a business/bank "too big to fail".

At the same time, much like every complex system, there is a law of diminishing returns at work as well. While intelligent and properly enforced regulations are important, there comes a point where too much regulation does more harm than good.

So, it's a matter of finding the sweet spot between the extremes of structure and chaos.

G M

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2012, 06:39:28 PM »
"So is there any reasonable expectation that lowered corp taxes will help jump start an ailing economy?"

Because businesses/corps ultimately pay no taxes?

Meaning that any taxes imposed on a business ultimately are passed on to the consumer of the goods/services the business provides.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2012, 07:08:01 PM by G M »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2012, 10:01:15 PM »
"So regardless of whether you blame the government or the corporations for the American experience, you are essentially concluding from the Canadian experience that, in general, strong regulation is needed for financial services?"

Not necessarily.  Although I am reconsidering the merits of the Glass Steagall Act, I submit that in the US the principal cause was the guarantee of the Federal govt, via Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack, of bad mortgages.  With this, the discipline of the market was removed and reckless behavior thus enabled.  This humongous error was dramatically multiplied by the intervention of the Fed with its low interest rates-- in post inflation, post tax dollars, interest rates have been essentially negative or zero for quite some time now.  This punishes savers, encourages desperate and reckless investing, and accelerated the housing bubble.   I would add that the Humphrey-Hawkins Act, which added full employment to the Fed's responsibility of price stability, another market meddling piece of Keynesian interventionist drivel, is also a major factor in the damage that the Fed causes.

"Thus the need is for better government, whether or not that means less government?  Regulation necessarily means bureaucracy." 

As I see it the issue is the concept by which the regulation is justified.  If the regulation is to enforce transparency in mortgage language, that is in support of free market principles and as such is fine.  If the regulation is to “encourage home ownership”, that is government intervention in the market and, as we see from the economic chaos that has ensued from such policies it is NOT fine.

"Or is there a free-market  (i.e. unregulated) solution to keep banks from doing this again?"

The solution is to let failure fail, not to punish savers to benefit the banks and other friends of the Congress e.g. AIG.



DougMacG

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2012, 07:31:38 AM »
"the issue is the concept by which the regulation is justified.  If the regulation is to enforce transparency in mortgage language, that is in support of free market principles and as such is fine.  If the regulation is to “encourage home ownership”, that is government intervention in the market and, as we see from the economic chaos that has ensued from such policies it is NOT fine."

Yes. The justification for bank regulation was -  don't take bad risks because we insure your deposits.  From there we jumped to encouraging home ownership above requiring creditworthiness based on a different justification for government action: 'Hey, we amassed all this power, let's do some good with it!'


"whether you blame the government or the corporations ... is there a free-market  (i.e. unregulated) solution to keep banks from doing this again?"

Looking at it the other way, 'what can the people can do to keep their government regulators from doing this again'?  


"As mentioned in the previous thread (Political Economics), the Harper government in Canada just dropped corporate taxes by 1.5% to 15%.  That will equate roughly to 33 billion annually given back to Canadian corporations."

TD, do you intend to say there will be no recovery of the lost revenues from new revenues generated?  Corporate income is a fixed number?  I disagree.  Let's see in a year.


"33 billion annually given back to Canadian corporations"

A funny way of looking at it.  Even at a lower rate, the who is giving to whom seems backwards.  Not that corporations give freely, but govt is now taking at a slightly lower rate.  When a retailers lowers their price do they assume the same amount of transactions?  If so why do they do it?  Assuming corporations are in the business of making money, why would they not use that 'gift' to make more money, build, buy, hire, expand which all lead to a host of other taxes to be paid including more corporate income tax.  If they will not use the money for those purposes, why not?




JDN

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2012, 07:57:39 AM »
"the issue is the concept by which the regulation is justified.  If the regulation is to enforce transparency in mortgage language, that is in support of free market principles and as such is fine.  If the regulation is to “encourage home ownership”, that is government intervention in the market and, as we see from the economic chaos that has ensued from such policies it is NOT fine."

I agree, the government has no business being in the business of encouraging home ownership.  Doug, are you therefore saying that the mortgage deduction (government intervention) should be immediately repealed?  It would seem that this very costly benefit has no purpose other than to "encourage home ownership".   

Note, personal home mortgage payments are not deductible in Canada, yet home prices and banks seem to do just fine.

Crafty_Dog

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China gets the Keystone pipeline that Obama rejected
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2012, 06:57:48 PM »
China's Canadian Energy Play
Alberta's oil sands will be developed, no matter what U.S. greens say..

President Obama may not want to exploit the energy buried in Canada's Alberta oil sands, but China sure does. Think of Monday's $15.1 billion offer by China's state-owned Cnooc to buy Canadian energy giant Nexen as a post-Keystone XL Pipeline bid to replace the U.S. as Canada's biggest energy investor and market.

Nexen offers Cnooc a sweeping North American energy footprint, with assets from heavy oil and shale gas in Alberta to offshore leases in the Gulf of Mexico. Part of the bet is also on Canadian politics, which could block the investment on nationalist grounds but which so far hasn't been captured by the anticarbon fevers that dominate Washington.

Canada seems to understand that its resources are a gift that can raise national prosperity. And as extraction technology has improved, Canada's proven oil reserves have climbed to at least 180 billion barrels, putting it behind only Saudi Arabia and Venezuela.

Unlike the U.S., Ottawa cedes most energy decisions to the provinces, which have encouraged production. A decade ago Alberta reduced to 1% the royalty that companies must pay until they have earned back their capital costs; then the rate reverts to 25%. The incentive kick-started the oil sands investment boom.

Enlarge Image

CloseAssociated Press
 
A Nexen oil sands facility near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada.
.Canada is also looking for oil from shale, drilling in the Arctic, and even producing in the Atlantic—offshore of Nova Scotia, within spitting distance of Maine. All of this has produced a gusher of oil, tax revenue and jobs. The oil sands alone are estimated to have accounted for one-third of Canada's economic growth in 2010 and 2011, according to Canada's national statistical agency.

Contrast that to the U.S., where President Obama has spent tens of billions on failed green energy schemes while making fossil-fuel exploration harder. This week the White House issued a veto threat against a House bill that would restore pre-Obama plans to allow greater offshore exploration. Alaska oil production is so low that there are worries about the viability of its pipeline. Shell Oil, which has plowed $4.5 billion into an Arctic investment, has been waiting the entire Obama Presidency for permits. The EPA is also waiting for a second term to impose national regulations on shale fracking.

Mr. Obama's rejection of the $7 billion Keystone XL has no doubt concentrated Chinese and Canadian minds. The pipeline would have moved oil from Canada and North Dakota to refineries on the Gulf Coast, and Mr. Obama's bow to American greens was a direct snub to Canada, which provides nearly 30% of U.S. imports. Prime Minister Stephen Harper promptly said that Canada needs to diversify its energy markets, perhaps by building a pipeline from Alberta to the West Coast to export to Asia.

Energy-hungry China couldn't be happier. Chinese bids for North American companies haven't always been welcomed—see the rejection last year of a Chinese consortium's $38.6 billion hostile bid for Canada's Potash Corp. But Cnooc executives might figure that Canadian regulators will be more welcoming to this nonhostile bid in the wake of the Keystone fiasco. Canada needs capital to exploit the oil sands and the markets to buy what is produced. Cnooc can help with both.

The lesson for America, and especially Democrats, is that Canada's oil sands will be developed, whether their green financiers like it or not. If the U.S. doesn't want the oil, China and the rest of Asia will gladly take it. The world wants to grow—must grow to reduce poverty—and it needs abundant, cheap energy to do it. Why is that so hard for some Americans to understand?

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2012, 08:23:44 AM »
O'Grady: How Canada Saved Its Bacon Deep cuts in government spending pulled Canada back from an epic fiscal crisis in the 1990s.
By MARY ANASTASIA O'GRADY..

Former Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin has a stern warning for the U.S. political class: Get real about the gap between federal revenues and spending, or get ready for disaster.

Mr. Martin knows of what he speaks. In 1993, when he was Canada's finance minister, his country faced a daunting fiscal crisis. It wasn't Greece, but by 1994 Canada's federal debt-to-GDP ratio was getting close to 80%, and the cost of servicing the debt had begun to eat up an incredible one-third of government revenue.

The central lesson from that crisis, Mr. Martin told an American Enterprise Institute audience in Washington last week, is that delay only ensures that the inevitable adjustment will be more painful.

Truer words were never spoken. Nor has it ever been more likely that they will fall on deaf ears, at least as long as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke keeps financing the partying in our nation's capital.

When the Liberal Party government of Prime Minister Jean Chrétien took power in October 1993, Mr. Martin was charged with pulling his nation out of the fiscal death spiral. He did it with deep cuts in federal spending over two years that amounted to 10% of the budget, excluding interest costs.

Nothing was spared. Even federal transfers to the provinces to fund Canada's sacred national health-care system got hit. The federal government also cut and block-granted money for welfare programs to the provinces, giving them almost full control over how the money would be spent.

In the 1997 election, the Liberals increased their majority in parliament. The Chrétien government followed with tax cuts starting in 1998 and one of the largest tax cuts—both corporate and personal—in the history of the country in 2000. The Liberals won again in 2000.

What drove the left-of-center Liberals to shoulder the burden of downsizing government in the 1994 and 1995 budgets—Mr. Martin takes great pains to point out—was not ideology but "arithmetic." That is to say that everyone recognized that the magnitude of the debt, and the cost of servicing it, was unsustainable.

The problem had been building over many years. In 1965, federal spending had been 15% of GDP. By 1993 it was 23%. Markets didn't like it. Between February and March of 1994, the three-month Canadian Treasury bill rate went to 5.82% from 3.85%. The Mexican peso crisis in December of that year didn't help. By February 1995 the interest rate on the Canadian Treasury bill reached 7.8%. In a world of increasing uncertainty and a flight to quality, Canada was paying dearly for its deteriorating risk profile. As the exchange rate sank, Canadians were getting poorer and the government was speeding toward a wall.

Another speaker at the American Enterprise Institute conference (which was co-sponsored by the Ottawa-based MacDonald-Laurier Institute) was Janice McKinnon, the finance minister for the center-left New Democratic Party government of the province of Saskatchewan in 1993. Ms. McKinnon told her own war stories.

In 1991, when her government took over, the "province was on its knees." In 1992, according to Ms. McKinnon, Standard & Poor's reported that Saskatchewan's "tax-supported debt was 180% of its annual revenue." "When our credit rating dropped to triple B rating, we had trouble borrowing money."

Ms. McKinnon described some of what followed: "In one budget we closed 52 hospitals, many schools and thousands of people lost their jobs. But we knew we had no choice, and we couldn't look back."

Ms. McKinnon likened the U.S. today to Saskatchewan in the 1980s. You are "not to the point where you are in a crisis, people aren't saying 'maybe we won't lend you money.' " And that means that the politicians can still put things off. "Before you actually realize 'we've got to do this because there is no choice,' there is a lot of denial," Ms. McKinnon explained. "I think you're at that stage."

She's right. Market discipline doesn't exist in Washington, which has the "privilege" of an accommodating central bank issuing the world's reserve currency. The big spenders don't need to pay attention to pesky numbers. As Stanford University economist John Taylor has noted, the Fed bought 77% of all new federal debt last year. It is doing so at rock-bottom interest rates. By holding the short-term fed-funds rate low while it buys up long-term securities, Mr. Bernanke is helping our political class ignore the real cost of rising federal indebtedness.

Of course these battle-scarred Canadians fully understand that the U.S. will reach a day of reckoning when the Fed has to constrain the money supply and interest rates start going up. "Our only plea," Ms. McKinnon said, "is that if you start tackling it before you hit the crisis stage, it's going to be a heck of lot easier. The longer you wait, the worse it gets."

Write to O'Grady@wsj.com

Crafty_Dog

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We might learn something , , ,
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2012, 08:43:00 PM »
"To achieve this the Harper government did something you might more expect to see in the private sector. Clement made history in Canada by tying bonuses of senior bureaucrats to the success of government-wide objectives for reducing expenditures. Get this, about 40% of the bureaucrats’ bonuses were linked to a “Deficit Reduction Action Plan.” Yeah, bureaucrats got bigger bonuses when they proposed ways to make bigger cuts.
Clement explained, “Forty percent of this at-risk pay for senior managers was based on how much they contributed to the target of least $4 billion a year in permanent savings. This is just part of how we’re changing the attitude of government officials from spending enablers to cost containers.”

http://www.forbes.com/sites/frankminiter/2012/07/24/what-president-obama-doesnt-want-you-to-know-about-canada/


OTOH, there is this:

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2012/11/canada-bleeding-private-jobs-vancouver.html

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2012/10/canada-gdp-unexpectedly-shrinks_31.html
« Last Edit: November 25, 2012, 05:50:59 AM by Crafty_Dog »

Crafty_Dog

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POTH: long standing territorial dispute
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2012, 07:59:50 AM »

 .

AT a time when territorial disputes over uninhabited outcrops in the East China Sea have led to smashed cars and skulls in China, a similar, if less dramatic, dispute over two remote rocks in the Gulf of Maine smolders between the United States and Canada.

Machias Seal Island and nearby North Rock are the only pieces of land that the two countries both claim after more than 230 years of vigorous and sometimes violent border-making between them.

Except for the occasional jousting of lobster boats, this boundary dispute floats far below the surface of public or official attention, no doubt reflecting the apparent lack of valuable natural resources and a reluctance to cede territory, no matter how small.

But if we are unlikely to resort to arms anytime soon, the clashes in Asia have shown how seemingly minor border disputes can suddenly stoke regional and nationalistic tensions. Our relaxed attitude toward these remote rocks may well be a mistake.

While the United States and Canada have other maritime boundary disputes along their 5,525-mile border, the world’s longest, this is the only one left that involves actual chunks of land.

Machias Seal Island is a 20-acre, treeless lump that sits nearly equidistant from Maine and New Brunswick. It, and the even smaller North Rock, lie in what local lobstermen call the gray zone, a 277-square-mile area of overlapping American and Canadian maritime claims.

The disagreement dates back to the 1783 Treaty of Paris that ended the Revolutionary War. The treaty assigned to the newly independent 13 colonies all islands within 20 leagues — about 70 miles — of the American shore. Since Machias Seal Island sits less than 10 miles from Maine, the American position has been that it is clearly United States soil.

But the treaty also excluded any island that had ever been part of Nova Scotia, and Canadians have pointed to a 17th-century British land grant they say proves the island was indeed part of that province, whose western portion became New Brunswick in the late 18th century.

Perhaps more important to the Canadian case, the British built a lighthouse on Machias Seal Island in 1832, which has been staffed ever since. Even today, two lighthouse keepers are regularly flown to the island by helicopter for 28-day shifts to operate a light — even though, like every other lighthouse in Canada, it is automated.

While abundant legal arguments surround Machias Seal Island, natural resources are far less evident. No oil or natural gas has been discovered in the area, nor has it had any strategic significance since it served as a lookout for German U-boats during World War I.

Tour boats from Maine and New Brunswick carry strictly limited numbers of bird watchers to the island to see nesting Atlantic puffins. And the surrounding waters contain lobsters that, thanks to different regulatory schemes and overlapping claims, have occasionally sparked clashes between Maine and New Brunswick lobstermen, although a bumper lobster crop this summer has slackened demand for gray zone crustaceans.

But the lack of hydrocarbons and the current lobster glut make this an ideal time to color in the gray zone.

The United States and Canada settled all their other maritime differences in the Gulf of Maine in 1984 by submitting their claims to the International Court of Justice for arbitration. They could have included the gray zone in that case, but did not. The Canadians had refused an earlier American arbitration proposal by saying their case was so strong that agreeing to arbitration would bring their title into question.

This attitude calls for re-examination. The fact that so little in the way of resources appears to be at stake, far from justifying the status quo, should be the main reason for resolving the issue. And for those concerned about blowback from “giving away” territory, letting the international court decide the case provides the most political cover.

As China and Japan can attest, border disputes do not go away; they fester. And when other factors push them back to the surface — the discovery of valuable resources, an assertion of national pride, a mishap at sea — the stakes can suddenly rise to a point where easy solutions become impossible.

Before that happens, we should put this last land dispute behind us, and earn our reputation for running the longest peaceful border in the world.


Stephen R. Kelly is the associate director of the Center for Canadian Studies at Duke University and a retired American diplomat who served twice in Canada.

Crafty_Dog

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R.I.P. John Sheardown
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2013, 07:55:04 AM »
John Sheardown, Canadian Who Sheltered Americans in Tehran, Dies at 88
 
By DOUGLAS MARTIN
Published: January 4, 2013
NYT


When militant radicals seized the United States Embassy in Iran in November 1979, they intended to take all its employees hostage. But five were elsewhere in the embassy compound and escaped capture. After six tense days of furtively moving around Tehran, one of them, Robert Anders, placed a call to a Canadian diplomat with whom he played tennis, and asked for help.

“Hell, yes, of course,” the diplomat, John Sheardown, answered. “Count on us.”

The five employees had by then been joined by a sixth. Four ended up being hidden for nearly three months in the home of Mr. Sheardown, the Canadian Embassy’s No. 2 official, who died on Sunday at 88. The other two found refuge with the Canadian ambassador, Ken Taylor.

The episode, which came to be known as the “Canadian caper,” was a footnote to the Iranian hostage crisis, in which young Iranian revolutionaries seized the American Embassy and held 52 people hostage for 444 days to try to force the United States to return the deposed shah from New York, where he was being treated for cancer. After the shah died in July 1980 in Egypt and war erupted between Iran and Iraq, negotiations with the United States led to the release of the hostages in January 1981.

The concealment and extrication of the American diplomats by the Canadian government and the Central Intelligence Agency inspired the recent movie “Argo.” Though Mr. Sheardown is not mentioned in it — public recognition always gravitated to Mr. Taylor, who is portrayed in the film as a hero — his role was nevertheless consequential.

“Without his enthusiastic welcome, we might have tried to survive on our own a few more days,” Mark Lijek, a retired Foreign Service officer, wrote in Slate last year. “We would have failed.”

Mr. Sheardown’s avuncular, pipe-puffing manner led his houseguests to call him Big Daddy. He bought groceries at different stores to disguise his household’s suddenly larger appetite. He bribed the garbage collector with money and beer for the same reason. Surveillance, including tanks at the end of the street, was constant. Strangers knocked on the front door, suspicious calls were commonplace, their car was repeatedly searched.

“We were already living in danger,” Mr. Sheardown’s wife, Zena, said in an interview on Wednesday. “And certainly the danger was compounded because we were hiding, literally hiding, fugitives.”

Mr. Sheardown, she said, died in Ottawa, where he lived, after being treated for Alzheimer’s disease and other ailments.

John Vernon Sheardown was born on Oct. 11, 1924, in Sandwich, Ontario, a small town absorbed by Windsor in the 1930s. At 18, he joined the Canadian Air Force and flew a bomber in World War II, once crash-landing near an English village after limping back from an attack on Germany. He broke both legs, but was able to crawl to a pub door at 3 a.m. and rouse the owner. He asked for a glass of Scotch, which the owner gave him. The owner then asked for payment while Mr. Sheardown waited for an ambulance — a story Mr. Sheardown relished.

He joined Canada’s immigration service in the early 1960s and later transferred to the foreign service, where he specialized in immigration matters. He was busy in Tehran with Iranians who wanted to leave the country, as well as with Afghans who had fled their country after the Soviet Union invaded it in December 1979. His houseguests became an official part of his responsibilities after the Canadian Parliament held its first secret session since World War II to approve the rescue mission, which included issuing the Americans fake Canadian passports.

While in Tehran, the Americans in his rented 20-room house occupied themselves by listening to news on a shortwave radio, reading, playing Scrabble and cards and, by their own admission, drinking copiously. They had to leave the house only once, when the owner had a real estate agent show it to a potential buyer. The two Americans staying with Ambassador Taylor were spirited to the Sheardown house for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The diplomats posed as members of a film crew who had supposedly been scouting locations. They had been taught how to speak like Canadians — for instance, by ending sentences with “eh?” One was given a Molson beer key ring.

Mr. Sheardown’s first marriage, to Kathleen Benson, ended in divorce. Besides his wife, the former Zena Khan, he is survived by his sons, Robin and John; his sisters, Jean Fitzsimmons and Betty Ann Whitehead; six grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.

After being awarded a high honor, the Order of Canada, Mr. Sheardown fought for his wife, a British citizen, to receive the same award. She had been legally excluded from consideration because she had never lived in Canada. He argued that she had had the tougher job because she seldom left the house while living in danger. She received the honor in 1981.

After “Argo” appeared in theaters, Ms. Sheardown said, its director, Ben Affleck, called to apologize for leaving her and her husband out of the movie. In an interview on Thursday, Mr. Affleck said he had been fully aware of the Sheardowns’ heroism before the film was shot, but had reluctantly omitted it for reasons of length, drama and cost.

“They got lost in the shuffle,” Mr. Affleck said. “It really did break my heart a bit.”

Crafty_Dog

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DougMacG

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Re: Canada passes US
« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2014, 09:50:50 AM »
http://danieljmitchell.wordpress.com/2013/12/13/the-most-pro-capitalism-place-to-live-in-north-america-is/

'The Way Forward' and out of stagnation in the US receives an good example from the north.  Conservatives achieve economic success and win 3 elections in a row.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/387201/canada-now-more-american-america-john-fund

Is Canada Now More American than America?
Canada’s Burger King secret: Hold the taxes, hold the regulations.
By John Fund

The merger of U.S. hamburger giant Burger King with Tim Hortons, Canada’s favorite coffee shop, will create the world’s third largest fast-food company, with a total of 18,000 restaurants in over 100 countries. It is also a piercing wake-up call for the U.S., because the new company will make its global headquarters in Canada’s province of Ontario. That underscores what savvy businesses everywhere have learned — the U.S. is an increasingly less attractive place to do business. “Canada has quietly and politely become, well, more American than America,” says columnist Stephen Green.

Since 2003, more than 35 major U.S. companies have moved their headquarters and reincorporated overseas. Rather than rail against such “inversions,” as President Obama does, or call for an economic boycott, as Ohio’s Democratic senator Sherrod Brown does, we should figure out what is driving U.S. companies offshore. Here’s a clue: The U.S. now has the highest corporate tax rate of any industrialized country, and the Wall Street Journal reports that the Obama administration is “even now looking for ways it can unilaterally raise corporate taxes without going to Congress.”
 
Canada has long been our more socialist and, consequently, our poorer neighbor to the north. But that has changed over the last two decades. Starting in 1995, Canada has drawn back from a public-debt precipice, restrained government spending, and dramatically overhauled its tax system. Next year it will also begin unilaterally reducing tariffs on thousands of manufactured goods — recognizing that free trade makes for wealthier consumers and a more prosperous society.
The results have been dramatic. This year, Canada has a higher per capita household income than the U.S., an unheard-of development that no one saw coming. It ranks eightth in the annual Economic Freedom of the World index (freetheworld.com) that the Fraser Institute compiles for over 150 countries, with especially strong marks in property rights and business freedom. By comparison, the U.S. ranks a pathetic 17th and is now categorized as only “mostly free.” “Unfortunately for the United States, we’ve seen overspending, weakening rule of law, and regulatory overkill on the part of the U.S. government, causing its economic freedom score to plummet in recent years,” said Fred McMahon of the Fraser Institute. “This is a stark contrast from 2000, when the U.S. was considered one of the most economically free nations and ranked second globally.”

While the U.S. eagle has plummeted in terms of economic freedom, the Canadian maple leaf has prospered. The consulting firm of KPMG looked at the tax costs of doing business in ten major nations. Setting the U.S. tax rate at a benchmark score of 100, it found that Canada’s costs were the lowest, 46.4 percentage points lower than the U.S. The United Kingdom, Mexico, and the Netherlands also beat out the U.S.

Canada’s strategy of lowering tax burdens on business was a conscious one, begun under the Liberal government of Paul Martin and accelerated since 2006 by the Conservative government of Stephen Harper. The late Jim Flaherty, who served as Harper’s finance minister until March of this year, told me last year that the essence of smart taxation is “to raise the resources needed for prudent government while creating an environment where the private sector is encouraged to create the longer-lasting jobs a country needs to prosper.” He concluded that “if you can give people enough upward opportunity for average people, the talk will be on creating more of it rather than on redistributing a shrinking pie.”

Among the innovations that Flaherty introduced was the Tax Free Savings Account, which allows Canadians to save more by setting aside money tax-free if it’s invested. Combined with the already established Registered Retirement Savings Plan, which is focused on building retirement income, Canadians now have more tax-free savings vehicles to help them remain independent over their lifespan than any people outside of Chile, which privatized its Social Security system in the 1980s.

No one suggests that Canada is a pure beacon of freedom. Harper’s Conservatives have a majority of seats in Parliament, but just shy of 50 percent of Canadians in the last election, in 2011, cast ballots for either the Liberals or New Democrats, both interventionist purveyors of big government. Canada’s single-payer health system delivers less innovation and longer waiting lists than Americans would be likely to tolerate, and many of Canada’s provinces are once again piling up debt and overspending.

But Canada proves that a country can climb out of a deep fiscal hole within a remarkably small number of years and build a prosperous society even while it retains large welfare-state programs.

That is a lesson for U.S. Democrats, who, rather than rail against Burger King’s lack of economic patriotism, should learn how Canada has avoided America’s economic stagnation. It’s also a lesson for Republicans, who often lack the courage of their convictions in calling for genuine economic reform. Canada’s economic example — and the political success of Harper’s Conservatives in winning three elections in a row — should stiffen their spines.


Crafty_Dog

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Islam in Canada
« Reply #18 on: April 15, 2015, 04:13:53 AM »

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PC fascism in Canada
« Reply #20 on: July 23, 2015, 08:06:39 PM »


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Imans call for killing Jews
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2017, 03:10:48 PM »
Canadian Imams Call for Death of Jews
by IPT News  •  Mar 1, 2017 at 12:43 pm
http://www.investigativeproject.org/5808/canadian-imams-call-for-death-of-jews


G M

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Re: Canada: Soldiers of Odin, Three Percenters Canada
« Reply #26 on: June 17, 2017, 01:41:56 PM »


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F9NdN4a6D_g


https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/the-birth-of-canadas-armed-anti-islamic-patriot-group?utm_source=vicefbcaads&utm_campaign=global

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JD7hPM_yxg

I see a similar theme shown in the above movie. When the public doesn't feel protected by it's government, it will form it's own structures to fill that void. Those structures may not be pretty or nice.
« Last Edit: June 17, 2017, 01:47:11 PM by G M »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #27 on: June 17, 2017, 01:49:36 PM »
I would like to see that.

I agree with your assessment.

Here is another yet different example of a government not protecting its people:

http://dailycaller.com/2017/06/16/canada-passes-law-criminalizing-use-of-wrong-gender-pronouns/

G M

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #28 on: June 17, 2017, 01:58:48 PM »
I would like to see that.

I agree with your assessment.

Here is another yet different example of a government not protecting its people:

http://dailycaller.com/2017/06/16/canada-passes-law-criminalizing-use-of-wrong-gender-pronouns/


It's worth watching. It's on Netflix now. Narcocultura is also well worth watching.

The governments of the west are bound and determined to utterly destroy and remake the people of the west.


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Thoughcrime
« Reply #29 on: June 17, 2017, 02:07:16 PM »


Above is the picture of a woman. Disagree? Thoughtcrime!

"To realise English Socialism (Ingsoc) in Oceania, the Party created the controlled language of Newspeak to ensure universal orthodoxy of ideology and politics among the populace."

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Steyn: Pass me my Sharia Niblick
« Reply #30 on: June 30, 2017, 10:33:50 AM »
https://www.steynonline.com/7947/pass-me-my-sharia-niblick

Pass Me My Sharia Niblick
by Mark Steyn
Steyn on Canada
June 28, 2017

Pam Davies for The Toronto Sun
Celebrating diversity in court: Ontario judge, Crown Counsel, Arabic interptreter, and niqabed defendant

The formal observances of Canada's 150th birthday have included a sesquicentennial viceregal gaffe and a pair of commemorative prime ministerial socks. But of course what most Canadians like to do when we're not trapping beaver and huffing poutine is celebrate diversity. And so it was that at the Canadian Tire store in Scarborough a "Scarborough woman" went full Allahu Akbar in the paint aisle, but, touchingly, instead of just slashing at her "fellow Canadians" with the traditional machete of her own cultural inheritance, she also embraced Canadian values by clobbering her victims with a golf club as if berating the caddy at nearby Cedar Brae. Global News reports:

Police said a woman walked to the paint section of the store with a golf club and began swinging it at employees and a customer while uttering threats.

A source confirmed to Global News the woman was reportedly wearing a niqab and a bandana adorned with what appeared to be a symbol for IS at the time of the alleged incident.

Police said employees and customers managed to subdue the woman and contact police, when she pulled a "large knife" out from under her clothing.

The woman was restrained and police said the knife was "pried out of her hand" with the help of another store employee. The employee sustained non-life threatening injuries and was treated at the scene.

The "Scarborough woman" is one Rehab Dughmosh, which sounds like a treatment centre for aging hardcore groupies who've put their back out but is in fact the name of the perpetrator. The allegedly alleged perpetrator, I should say. Ms Dughmosh, speaking through an interpreter and the folds of her head-to-toe body bag, made a brief statement to the court:

"I meant to harm those people," Rehab Dughmosh told Justice Kimberley Crosbie through an Arabic interpreter during a court appearance.

"I reject all counsel here. I only believe in Islamic Sharia law. I would like to revoke my Canadian citizenship that I received. I don't want to have any allegiance to you... If you release me, I'm going to commit this type of action again and again because I'm pledging allegiance to [IS leader] Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi," she said, adding she refuses to adhere to Canadian law.

Well, that's easy for you to say. Her Honour was not entirely persuaded:

Asking the accused to think about it, Justice Kimberley Crosbie would not immediately accept her attempt to plead guilty to the alleged ISIS-inspired attack that saw two people assaulted.

Joe Warmington's Toronto Sun column is full of fascinating details. For example, the lavishly funded Canadian bureaucracy cannot reliably state whether or not Rehab Dughmosh has any Canadian citizenship to revoke, or where she came from:

They are working on the belief she was born in Syria but before Canada they are looking into leads of a possible stop in Jordan... She does have status in Canada but it's still not clear if she has Canadian citizenship or has the belief that permanent resident status is one and the same.

If she is a Canadian citizen it would be next to impossible to deport her. If she has a temporary or permanent residence status, there is a process.

Good luck with that. Mr Warmington quotes socks symbol Justin Trudeau:

"I'll give you the quote so that you guys can jot it down and put it in an attack ad somewhere that the Liberal Party believes that terrorists should get to keep their Canadian citizenship," he said. "Because I do. And I'm willing to take on anyone who disagrees with that."

Trudeau's premise is "as soon as you make citizenship for some Canadians conditional on good behaviour, you devalue citizenship for everyone"...

It comes to something when a golf-club-wielding Arabic-cursing body-bagged jihadist crone unable to speak the language of "her" country and attacking patrons of a suburban shopping mall in furtherance of the global caliphate nevertheless has a better grasp of citizenship than a western prime minister. But, alas, such is the case. Citizenship is not conditional on "good behaviour", but it is conditional on what Rehab Dughmosh calls "allegiance". In traditional ethnostates such as, say, Denmark, that didn't used to be a big deal: your family had been Danish for a thousand years, you felt Danish, you lived Danish, so naturally your allegiance was to Denmark - "naturally" as in it's so natural you don't even think about it. That's why we call adopting citizenship "naturalization" - because, by the end of it, it's supposed to feel natural. Naturalization requires a transfer of allegiance, which is why in Canada you take an oath to the Queen and in America, just to underline the point, you're also called upon to "absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen".

That should just about cover it.

Except that it doesn't. Because to the post-modernists of the western political class "allegiance" is a fusty concept. They don't believe in it, so they don't see why Ahmed off the boat from Misurata should be expected to. Perhaps the weirdest moment for me in the Munk Debate last year, between Nigel Farage and me, on the one hand, and, on the other, Louise Arbour and Simon Schama, was this exchange:

Mark Steyn: When you've got second- and third- generation Belgians and Frenchmen and Germans and Britons and Canadians going off to join ISIS, blowing up Paris, blowing up Brussels, that ought to occasion a certain modesty among us that our skills at assimilation, at inculcating our values, are not as awesome and all-encompassing as they were in the nineteenth century. And to think, when second- and third-generation immigrants are blowing up the airport, that the answer is suddenly to accelerate immigration from the same source, is very bizarre. In what sense are these people Belgian?

Simon Schama: Well, you know, in what sense is Razia Iqbal British? She's fully British, right..? And she happens to be a British Muslim, right? And how more British can you get than doing the BBC World Service?

Mark Steyn: Yes. I worked with Zeinab Badawi at Channel 4 in Britain. I've got no problem with that. But that's my point: Holding a passport does not make you Canadian and does not make you Belgian and does not make you French.

Louise Arbour: What?

Simon Schama: I agree.

Professor Schama appeared to concede that point, but Mme Arbour was apparently stunned by it, and returned to it later, very emphatically:

Louise Arbour: And by the way, Mark, if you have a Canadian passport you're a Canadian citizen. There's no arguing with that, right?

Mme Arbour is a former Supreme Court justice but she's missing my point: a Canadian passport may make you a Canadian citizen, as a point of law, but it does not make you a Canadian, as an actual, living, breathing reality. Body-bagged from head to toe, speaking neither English nor French, Rehab Dughmosh has renounced her allegiance to Canada and proclaimed instead her allegiance to the Islamic State, which happens to be Canada's enemy, which in the pre-Arbour era would be what we quaintly call "treason". Why does Mme Arbour presume to know better than Ms Dughmosh about where the latter's allegiance lies?

A few days ago, a sniper with Canada's special forces broke the world record for longest confirmed kill, picking off a Soldier of Allah at 3,450 meters - which is over two miles. That's phenomenal and unprecedented, and the JTF2 guy who did it deserves all the honours the Canadian state can confer on him. On this 150th birthday I only hope we can continue to produce more men like that.

But what's the point if, for every ISIS barbarian you pick off at 3,450 meters, back on the home front you're importing hundreds and thousands of loons who support him and share his world view, day in, day out. There are more "British Muslims" fighting for al-Baghdadi than for the Queen. Thousands more: they feel their allegiance to the Caliphate in a way that they do not for Britain. Likewise with Rehab Dughmosh: she feels her allegiance to ISIS, and not for Canada. Never did. Pace the socks symbol Trudeau, making citizenship conditional on "good behaviour" - ie, non-treason - does not "devalue citizenship for everyone". Tolerating ISIS fighters holding UK and Canadian and Belgian citizenship is what "devalues citizenship for everyone". Rehab Dughmosh's Canadian citizenship devalues that JTF2 sniper's Canadian citizenship.

That's true in the broader sense, too. Ms Dughmosh and those "British" ISIS volunteers feel their true allegiance; they live and breathe it. If you accept them, as Mme Arbour does, as Canadian and UK and French and Swedish citizens, "no arguing with that", you devalue your own citizenship to the point where its purchase on you starts to weaken and dissolve. I look at the feeble, passive reactions to jihadist provocations in Manchester and London and Paris and Brussels, and wonder: how many of the west's citizens feel British or French or Belgian? It's the shrunken reductive definition of "citizenship" advanced by the likes of Trudeau that devalues it - and (a somber thought for this 150th Dominion Day) perhaps fatally.

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Canada moves to modernize anti-terrorism legislation
« Reply #31 on: September 12, 2017, 06:04:07 AM »
Canada Moves to 'Modernize' its Anti-Terrorism Legislation
by Scott Newark
Special to IPT News
September 11, 2017
https://www.investigativeproject.org/6644/canada-moves-to-modernize-its-anti-terrorism

 
With the return of Canada's Parliament later this month, one of the security issues sure to attract attention is Bill C-59.

It aims to modernize and clarify Canadian national security and intelligence operations. This includes how the country collects and retains metadata, better coordination for oversight and review of counter-terrorism investigations.

These issues and the need for reform have been the subject of discussion in Canada for more than a decade and, ironically, many of the changes proposed in C-59 were specifically described in detail in a May 2016 IPT column on the subject.

The bill would revise the much-maligned existing Anti-Terrorism Act, known as C-51, enacted by the previous government in the immediate aftermath of the October 2014 terrorist attacks in Quebec and on Parliament Hill. Curiously, the bill was passed with the support of opposition Liberals who are now in power. They promised changes if elected during the 2015 campaign.

C-51's increase in CSIS authority, expanded information sharing and broader anti-terrorism power in the Criminal Code generated legitimate debate. The bill also fueled partisan and ideological hyperbole in part because it did not address oversight and accountability, and the language used in the Bill to explain and justify its changes was deficient. Its defense by the Harper government was also needlessly combative rather than substantive.

It is important to note that the bill was only introduced in Parliament in late June, 18 months after the elections. The new government may have realized that the original bill was not necessarily as malevolent as had been suggested and that the issues involved were more complex than originally thought. The bill also demonstrates that, to its credit, the government has decided to address larger national security institutional and accountability issues which C-51 did not.

These issues are of real importance to Canadians and while the questionable payoff of $10.5 million to terrorist Omar Khadr and the Liberal government's deer in the headlights approach to the flood of people illegally entering Canada to claim 'refugee' status will be under the spotlight, so too will C-59.

It contains a relatively detailed preamble that sets out the bill's national security purpose and intent, along with the required consideration of civil rights and liberties. This is a welcome feature that greatly reduces the future ability of courts to strike down legislation on Charter grounds on the basis that no justification for the impugned measures was provided by government.

The bill creates the National Security and Intelligence Review Agency (NSIRA) that will have direct review authority over the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), the Communications Security Establishment (CSE) and, in relation to national security issues, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP). The new NSIRA can review activities of any department that relates to national security or intelligence and review authority for an issue referred to it by a Minister of the Crown. This should be a significant step to ending the 'siloed' environment that different review bodies encountered when trying to get the 'big picture' on national security issues involving multiple departments and agencies. If C-59 is passed, it will be the entity with the authority to investigate complaints made against CSIS or CSE and the RCMP when it relates to 'national security' issues. This review could include cases of alleged improper information sharing or unauthorized 'disruption' activities. It should be clarified and confirmed that this also applies to the actions of an agency of the federal government, as a significant gap would be created were that not the case.

While this change is positive, the agency needs to be assessed to ensure it is carrying out its duties as intended, because having a mandate is not the same thing as delivering on it. With the creation of the Parliamentary National Security Review Committee, there is no longer a need to have the new NSIRA comprised of former politicians. The agency needs people with operational, academic or even journalistic expertise in order to succeed, and it needs appropriate funding to be able to carry out its important duties.

The bill abolishes the Office of the Commissioner of the Communications Security Establishment and replaces it with an increasingly empowered Intelligence Commissioner. The Intelligence Commissioner has defined approval authority for authorizations, amendments or determinations sought by CSIS and CSE for things like communications interception, cyber system intrusion, and for CSIS, travel disruption, financial interference, communications interception, creating false documents. The scope of these new 'disruption' authorities will deservedly be debated as C-59 is reviewed.

The commissioner also is granted extensive review and approval authority over metadata (or 'datasets') acquisition, use and sharing, which is clearly a response to the 2016 Federal Court decision slamming CSIS for its unauthorized activities in this area. Metadata involves communications from cellphones to the internet. Metadata interception does not necessarily record actual conversations, but through modern data analytical technology, it can provide information on who a person communicates with, when that takes place, and more.

While independent oversight is welcome, it must not simply create more self-serving bureaucracy that interferes with operational intelligence and national security needs. This appears to be recognized in s. 21 of the act which permits expedited approval in defined operational circumstances, but this is an issue that needs to be clarified and monitored. In a welcome sign of information sharing and coordination, s. 22 of the Act requires all of the commissioner's decisions in this regard to be provided to the new NSIRA.

C-59's most important changes include a modernization of the Communication Security Establishment's (CSE) mandate that gives more specific detail and authorizes 'active' cyber operations. This means CSE can take proactive cyber intrusion measures, including, presumably, hacking and disruption, in the "global information infrastructure" including in information based systems. These changes more accurately reflect the current cyber and security environment and the activities that CSE is undertaking.
For the first time, CSE will be authorized to carry out 'active cyber operations' for the broad purpose of being able to "...degrade, disrupt, influence, respond to or interfere with the capabilities, intentions or activities of a foreign individual, state, organization or terrorist group as they relate to international affairs, defence or security." This is a significant enhancement of CSE's mandate that, no doubt, will be subject to close scrutiny.

Changes to the CSIS Act in C-59 provide more detail regarding restrictions on activities as well immunities for CSIS officers in carrying out their duties. The bill does not, however, remove the active 'disruption' authority that was provided to CSIS in C-51 which was a historic change in CSIS' traditional restricted information gathering role. In that sense, the C-59 changes to CSIS are more symbolic than substantive. The amendments also create specific and extensive procedural requirements for CSIS in the gathering and maintaining public 'datasets,' which are the compiled and organized data from 'metadata' retrieval. A preamble to the bill reinforces the priorities of mandate clarity, appropriate respect for privacy and compliance and accountability.

The changes made to the Secure Air Travel Act in C-59 suggest that Transport Canada wants greater operational control of the 'No Fly' list system and that it is finally preparing to add modern technology to the existing biographic data based system. This change will support an effective international 'bad guy' biometric lookout database. The bill also adds measures to somewhat improve the redress system for people challenging their designation, a concern driven in part by recent cases involving children improperly added to the list.

C-59's changes to the Criminal Code are among the most dramatic. They will expand the designated terrorist 'entity' criteria and repeal the unused preventive arrest and investigate hearing provisions.

Unfortunately, the changes covering people who advocate or promote terrorist acts, and the definition of 'terrorist propaganda,' are counter-productive in that they will not address the modern terrorist communications techniques that use broad social media messaging for radicalization and recruitment. There have been no reported instances of abuse of the current provisions, so the motivation for this change appears to be political. Fortunately, the bill leaves existing evidentiary standards for terrorism peace bonds in the Criminal Code, which were lowered in C-51, intact.

The bill also creates a mandatory review of the legislation and its operational impacts in five years which is a helpful strategy.

C-59 likely will preserve law enforcement's and intelligence agencies' national security capabilities created by C-51. The bill dramatically modernizes Canada's cyber security capabilities and makes significant reforms to strengthen and coordinate institutional review and oversight in the national security sector.

There are definitely a number of issues in C-59 that need to be raised at committee so that appropriate explanations of the rationale and purposes of the changes can be provided. That is, after all, the purpose of the committee review of legislation and hopefully this can be accomplished without the acrimony and partisanship that surrounded C-51.

Scott Newark is a former Alberta Crown Prosecutor who has also served as Executive Officer of the Canadian Police Association, Director of Operations for Investigative Project on Terrorism and as a Security Policy Advisor to the governments of Ontario and Canada. He is currently an Adjunct Professor in the TRSS Program in the School of Criminology at Simon Fraser University.

DougMacG

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Oh Canada! Tax cutting conservative elected in Ontario
« Reply #32 on: June 08, 2018, 01:14:27 PM »
Conservative elected in Ontario.  Lowest vote for the liberal ruling party in history.  "Progressive conservatives tripled their seats.  What is the significance of just one province in Canada?  Proportional to the US, Ontario is the equivalent of California, Texas, New York and Florida combined. 
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-ontario-election-live-updates/

Liberals fall short of official party status; Wynne resigns as Liberal leader
"Some Liberal candidates...didn’t even put the word Liberal in their campaign materials."
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-wynne-resigns-as-liberal-leader-as-party-suffers-historic-rout-in/

Doug Ford Platform promises: Balance the budget, cut spending, reduce taxes. scrap a minimum wage hike, cut corporate tax rates, abolish the 15 per cent non-resident buyer tax on real estate, cut small business tax rate.  And roll back beer prices!

“I don’t believe in the government sticking their hands in our lives all the time. I believe in letting the market dictate”
https://www.macleans.ca/politics/ontario-election-2018-party-platforms/

Crafty_Dog

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GPF: Canada-US- the ties that bind
« Reply #33 on: June 14, 2018, 07:55:05 AM »
The US and Canada: The Ties That Bind
Jun 14, 2018

 
By Jacob L. Shapiro
The United States and Canada were just selected to host the 2026 World Cup together (along with Mexico), but when it comes to trade, the two countries are miles apart. On May 31, the U.S. decided to lift Canada’s exemption from steel and aluminum tariffs. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau hit back on June 9, saying that Canada, which last year exported 83 percent of its steel and 87 percent of its aluminum to the U.S., would impose retaliatory measures by July 1. Three days later, U.S. President Donald Trump said Trudeau’s statement would cost Canada “a lot of money.” Trudeau declined to respond to Trump’s most recent comments, and the war of words seems to have ended there, at least for now.
This isn’t the first time the Trump administration has clashed with a key U.S. ally. Shortly after taking office, Trump had an unpleasant exchange with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull over an immigration dispute, though both sides quickly patched things up. Trump’s relationship with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May has been rocky from the start, and British police even briefly suspended intelligence sharing with American officials following last year’s Manchester bombing, citing U.S. leaks of sensitive information. Now the U.S. appears to be locking horns with its northern neighbor. But as with Australia and the U.K., the rhetorical duel with Canada is superficial, based more on political grandstanding than on a change in the bilateral relationship.
Stalwart Allies
Canada is highly dependent on its relationship with the United States, especially in economic terms. Last year, 76 percent of Canadian exports went to the United States. According to Canada’s National Energy Board, a staggering 99.1 percent of Canadian crude oil exports went to the U.S. as well. A recent study by economist Trevor Tombe at the University of Calgary showed that trade with the U.S. accounted for 49 percent of the gross domestic product in Ontario – by far Canada’s most populous and wealthiest province.
 
(click to enlarge)
 
(click to enlarge)
The U.S. is also reliant on Canada, but to a far lesser degree. Only 18 percent of U.S. exports are destined for Canada. But for a number of states, especially those along the northern border and that import Canadian crude, U.S.-Canada trade is far more critical than it is on the national level. (Michigan, for example, derives 5 percent of its state GDP from exports to Canada.) Even so, the economic relationship between the two countries is hugely imbalanced. Whatever economic vulnerabilities the U.S. has, Canada’s are much larger.
 
(click to enlarge)
But the relationship is not simply an economic one. The United States owes its position as the world’s sole superpower in part to the fact that it has not had to deal with security threats on its land borders for over a century. Mexico hasn’t been a serious threat to U.S. national security since the Mexican-American War of 1848. The U.S. and Canada haven’t fought a major conflict since the War of 1812, when the British still ruled over the territory north of the U.S. In World War II, Canada and the U.S. became stalwart allies, coordinating defense policy and sharing intelligence, even to this day. When U.S. military planners consider how best to organize U.S. forces, they don’t have to worry about protecting the United States from a northern enemy – and it’s difficult to put a price on that.
A Threat to U.S. National Security

This is the reason the steel and aluminum tariffs are causing such angst in Ottawa. It is not about the trade spat itself. Canada and the U.S. have trade disputes going back centuries, and disagreements are inevitable in such a close economic relationship, especially when one side has significantly more leverage than the other.

The problem for Canada is that, to be able to impose the tariffs in the first place, Trump had to claim that the existing trade model posed a threat to U.S. national security. For a country like Canada, whose foreign policy for the past 80 years can essentially be boiled down to not being a threat to U.S. national security, this stretches the bounds of credulity and politeness. Sure, the United States can argue that its increased reliance on steel and aluminum imports necessitates protectionist policies. As a result of Chinese dumping, the price of steel and aluminum has plummeted and, in the process, destroyed U.S. companies. Canada took advantage by almost doubling steel and aluminum exports to the United States in the past 17 years, when Chinese dumping kicked off in earnest.

But for Canada, the insinuation that it somehow poses a threat by exporting steel and aluminum to the United States is a ludicrous argument, one that takes for granted Canada’s contributions to the U.S.-led post-war world order. It also fails to recognize that Canada’s share in U.S. trade has dropped precipitously since 2001, when the U.S. began importing cheaper Chinese goods at much higher rates – which Canada accepted without nary a protest despite the damage done to Canadian manufacturers.
Canada doesn’t have much room for maneuver when it comes to foreign policy or trade with the United States. After World War II, aligning with the U.S. in the global conflict against the Soviet Union was a fait accompli. Canada, like the United States, is protected from most global conflicts by the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, and because the United States dwarfs Canada militarily, economically and in terms of population, Canada has few alternatives other than to follow the United States’ lead. Canada, for the most part, does this willingly and without protest – few countries are as prosperous and secure as Canada is today, and that is in no small part due to the United States. In fact, the most remarkable aspect of the United States’ relationship with Canada – and indeed with the U.K. and its English-speaking former colonies – is that it carries on inexorably, immune to the politics of the day.

That’s because politics and strategy don’t always align. Like the United States, Canada has its own political divisions, and Trudeau represents the same urban, well-educated, socially liberal segment of the population in Canada that would have voted for Hillary Clinton in the United States. (It is no coincidence that Trudeau has become something of a celebrity to American liberals in recent years.) Trudeau cannot kowtow to Trump any more than Trump can abandon the promises he made to his base. Trump scores points with his base by insulting Trudeau just as Trudeau scores points with his base by insulting Trump. Meanwhile, the U.S. needs Canada, and Canada needs the U.S., and the two go on cooperating on the issues that really matter – like co-hosting the World Cup in 2026. These realities may be overshadowed by politics at times, but that does not make them mutually exclusive.

The post The US and Canada: The Ties That Bind appeared first on Geopolitical Futures.




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Canada backtracks on carbon tax
« Reply #34 on: August 13, 2018, 08:14:34 AM »
The reason Canada is backtracking on the carbon tax is climate change, investment climate change.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/canada-backtracks-on-a-carbon-tax-1534110070

o into effect next year. The reason for the backtrack has to do with climate change, but not the kind associated with global warming.

Mr. Trudeau is reacting to shifting political winds stirred by Canada’s investment climate, which has turned stone cold. He faces an election in October 2019, and will have trouble unless investors warm to Canada.
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Why is Canada against a hundredth of a degree of warming anyway?

Crafty_Dog

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GPF: Canada caught in Trade War
« Reply #36 on: January 17, 2019, 04:54:30 AM »

Jan. 17, 2019
By Jacob L. Shapiro
Canada: Caught in the Crossfire of the US-China Trade War


Canada’s arrest of a top Chinese executive landed Ottawa in the middle of a feud it wanted to avoid.


Canada has found itself in the middle of two diplomatic spats over the past five months. In August, Saudi Arabia took exception to a Canadian Foreign Ministry tweet urging Saudi authorities to release jailed women’s rights activists. In response, Saudi Arabia withdrew its ambassador in Ottawa and suspended all trade and investment with Canada. A few months later, Canadian authorities arrested Meng Wanzhou, a top executive of Chinese telecom firm Huawei, at the United States’ request. After Meng’s arrest, China detained two Canadians, including former diplomat Michael Kovrig, accusing them of threatening China’s national security. This week, another Canadian was sentenced to death in China after a brief retrial for allegedly organizing a methamphetamine smuggling ring.

Canada probably didn’t intend to provoke a conflict in either situation. It’s hardly the first country to accuse Saudi Arabia of violating human rights – under normal circumstances the Foreign Ministry’s tweet would have been quickly forgotten. But these weren’t normal circumstances. Canada publicly criticized the kingdom in the midst of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s consolidation of power and ambitious drive to transform Saudi society – which hinged on cultivating an image of the crown prince as a reformer. In that sense, the tweet was inadvertently prescient. Canada had no way of knowing it would enrage the Saudi political establishment as much as it did or that Saudi agents would kill a Saudi journalist in a Turkish consulate and bring global attention to the kingdom’s human rights record just two months later.

As for China, Canadian authorities detained Meng not at Ottawa’s directive but because a New York court issued a warrant for her arrest on Aug. 22. While the U.S. hasn’t yet produced an indictment or formal request for Meng’s extradition (it has until the end of the month to do so), Canadian prosecutors said last month she was being charged with conspiracy to defraud banks. Meng is accused of not disclosing to banks Huawei’s links to another tech firm called Skycom, which was doing business in Iran that violated U.S. sanctions. Canada has plenty of reasons to be suspicious of Huawei, but on Meng’s arrest, it’s simply fulfilling its treaty obligations to the U.S. That this justification is unconvincing to China is a subtle reminder of the very real differences between Chinese and Western legal systems.

The Saudi issue is ultimately a minor one – Saudi Arabia represents less than 1 percent of Canadian trade, and whether Canada will continue to sell military equipment and vehicles to the kingdom will be based on domestic political considerations in Canada more than anything else. The China issue, however, is more complicated and potentially more consequential. Canada might have hoped to avoid getting involved in the U.S.-China spat. The Canadian economy is overwhelmingly dependent on the U.S. economy, and though Canada can’t eliminate that dependence, it can try to reduce it – in part with China’s help. Indeed, as recently as last November, Canada’s trade minister said a free trade deal between Canada and China was possible.

(click to enlarge)

That might not be the case anymore, however. Unlike the U.S., Canada has elected to remain in the revamped Trans-Pacific Partnership, which was designed in part to limit China’s expanding global economic influence. In December, it was reported that spy chiefs from the “Five Eyes” intelligence alliance met in July in Canada to coordinate efforts to prevent Chinese-made equipment from being used in 5G mobile networks. (The U.S., Australia and New Zealand have banned Huawei equipment from being used in 5G networks, and the U.K.’s largest telecom company announced its intention to avoid Huawei last month. Canada is likely not far behind.) In November, Canada deployed the HMCS Calgary to the Western Pacific to participate in anti-China drills and has signaled its intention to keep up to two ships in the region year-round.

Canada is, therefore, already part of an emerging U.S.-led alliance to constrain Chinese power. China is seeking a temporary trade deal with the U.S., so it can’t afford to confront Washington directly right now, especially not while its economy is under increasing pressure. But Canada is a much smaller and weaker country than the U.S., and Chinese power might have more of an effect there. From China’s perspective, it was already facing an escalating trade conflict with the U.S. and a concerted campaign to block Chinese companies like Huawei from the global economy. Now Canada, of all countries, is arresting Chinese nationals. The excuse that it was merely operating under the rule of law doesn’t make it any easier for China to accept. China has responded that it, too, has laws, not to mention roughly 200 dual Canadian-Chinese citizens in custody. If the West wants to play hardball, China will show it can play, too.

Unfortunately for China, its retaliation against Canada is somewhat self-defeating. China needs foreign investment and has been working hard to keep foreign businesses in China and attract more foreign companies that have the capital and technology to help Beijing manage its ongoing economic transition. Arresting Western nationals will only deter foreign companies from wanting anything to do with China. On the other hand, Beijing can’t afford to look weak, especially in the eyes of its own people. The potential impact on the Chinese economy of the U.S. trade war is so great that Beijing has no choice but to try to spin the situation as much as it can. (Chinese censors are already doing so.) The arrest of a Chinese national – the daughter of the founder of a globally recognized Chinese company no less – is much harder to spin. If the Chinese government can’t protect its own people when they’re abroad, the motherland is not nearly as strong as the Communist Party insists it is.

Canada didn’t intend to set off an altercation with China any more than it meant to offend the Saudi crown prince’s self-styled image as a feminist icon, but as is sometimes the case in geopolitics, intentions are irrelevant. From Ottawa’s perspective, Canada is simply observing the rule of law. China has a different interpretation – according to its ambassador to Canada, “the detention of Ms. Meng is not a mere judicial case, but a premeditated political action.” When China retaliates by detaining Canadians who it says are threats to its national security, and Canada and its Western allies decry this as a violation of the rule of law, China can’t help but express anger at what it sees as “double standards due to Western egotism and white supremacy.” But the Canadian government is obligated to honor a U.S. extradition request, and as a result, it’s now mired in a confrontation it didn’t want. Complicating matters, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has ample political reasons not to appear weak on China, considering the 2016 around Chinese contributions to the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation.

In the end, this diplomatic spat will come down to whether the United States is willing to drop the charges against Meng in light of its broader negotiations with the Chinese government. Earlier this week, China signaled it may be open to a face-saving resolution – Meng’s father and Huawei’s founder made a rare public appearance during which he described U.S. President Donald Trump as “a great president” and Huawei as “only a sesame seed in the trade conflict between China and the U.S.” If, however, the two countries, who will continue trade talks at the end of the month, do come to an understanding, it will only defuse the current problem. In the long term, the U.S. and the West are behaving in ways China can interpret only as hostile to its development, and China is behaving in ways the U.S. and the West can interpret only as hostile their interests. It’s looking increasingly doubtful that the two sides can break out of this spiral. In the meantime, Meng, Kovrig and Canadian foreign policy remain caught in the crossfire.

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GPF: Canada a casualty of America First
« Reply #37 on: May 09, 2019, 08:32:32 AM »
May 9, 2019



By Jacob L. Shapiro


Canada: A Casualty of ‘America First’


China is proving tough on Canada, and the U.S. has yet to come to its neighbor’s aid.


Canada’s relations with China continue to deteriorate. Shortly after Canada arrested Huawei Chief Financial Officer Meng Wanzhou at the United States’ behest in December, China arrested two Canadian nationals, including former diplomat Michael Kovrig, in a tit-for-tat move meant to bully Canada into releasing Meng. When that didn’t work, Beijing tried a new strategy, effectively punishing what it perceived as Canadian intransigence by restricting access to the Chinese market for key Canadian sectors such as canola, peas, soybeans and pork. Those measures are now beginning to hurt the Canadian economy, and with little prospect of resolving the issue bilaterally, Canada is reaching out to the United States for help – but its closest ally has been unwilling to render assistance.

Deteriorating Relations

China’s market-blocking maneuvers have been mostly unofficial thus far. What concrete steps China has taken to block Canadian exports have all been taken under the guise of plausible deniability. China suspended the export permits of two Canadian pork producers last week, ostensibly because of a labeling problem. In February, China banned shipments of canola seed from two Canadian companies, claiming that it discovered pests in the shipments, and in April, it filed a quality complaint against a third Canadian canola exporter. Now, there are reports of Canadian soybeans and peas facing unusual obstacles when reaching China, including lengthy inspection delays far exceeding the norm and intense scrutiny of Canadian products.


 

(click to enlarge)


Some Canadian officials have tried to put on a brave face despite these developments – Saskatchewan province’s premier recently dismissed the reports on all Canadian exports besides canola as little more than “hearsay,” while Canada’s agriculture minister insisted last week that the reports reflect little more than the routine issues that periodically emerge during routine customs inspections. Perhaps, but that explanation seems doubtful, especially considering that China’s African swine fever epidemic means China needs to secure sources of pork imports, in particular. It’s more likely that China has made an intentional decision to block certain Canadian exports, even if it means China must find alternative sources for those goods.
Whether intentional or not, the Canadian economy is beginning to feel the effects of China’s emergent fastidiousness.

Canadian trade statistics for February 2019 show an almost 25 percent decline in monthly exports to China compared to prior months. Canola exports have been hit particularly hard; exports to China declined in February by almost 60 percent compared to November 2018, with canola meal (51 percent) and canola seed (38 percent) registering substantial declines as well. And that data will likely be worse when March and April figures are released. At least some of the decline can be attributed to Chinese New Year celebrations in February, but the drops are too precipitous for that to be the only factor. Indeed, an April 29 Reuters report detailed how Chinese buyers were canceling purchases of Canadian canola on short notice, forcing Canadian companies to resell to buyers in countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh at steep discounts.


 

(click to enlarge)


With little in the way of leverage to change China’s behavior, Canada has turned to the United States for help. Multiple Canadian government officials have stated publicly that they would welcome U.S. support and that such support could make China more willing to find an accommodation with Canada. No such American assistance has been forthcoming. The U.S. State Department has expressed concern over China’s canola bans, and the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee passed a nicely worded bipartisan resolution in March “commending” Canada for “upholding the rule of law” and arresting Meng. In practice, however, the U.S. has done very little. Thus far, the U.S. has elected not to address the Huawei issue – including Meng’s arrest – in its trade negotiations with China or to make China’s Canada-targeted measures an issue. In addition, according to Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., Washington has not been particularly forthright with the Canadian government about U.S. intentions for Meng.

‘America First’

The United States’ unwillingness to use its influence with China to protect its northern neighbor fits with the broader foreign policy of the Trump administration – namely, “America First.” This is, after all, the same U.S. government that raised tariffs against Canadian steel exports to the United States by citing a “national security threat” and that has used Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as its favorite rhetorical punching bag. The U.S. is pursuing negotiations with China to secure better trade terms for American companies – not for Canadian ones, even though China’s economic expansion in recent decades has posed similar problems for both countries. The United States is not interested in using the extensive leverage it holds over the Chinese economy to help other countries, even its most stalwart allies – in fact, the U.S. is simultaneously pursuing new trade arrangements with such allies, including Canada and Japan.

It is hard to overstate how radical a departure this is from previous U.S. foreign policy. The U.S. cemented its position as a global power after World War II by doing the exact opposite – by not putting America first. The U.S. did not do this out of generosity or nobility but because it calculated that doing so would give the United States more power. The U.S. was rich and powerful enough that it could afford to pass on the benefits of that power to other countries and, in so doing, build a network of relationships, partnerships and alliances that countries like the Soviet Union then and China now – which has hardly any allies to speak of besides a despotic hermit regime on the Korean peninsula or an eternally fractious Pakistan – can only dream of. By not putting America first in all things, America was first in arguably the most important thing: power.

A country like Canada cannot afford to break with the United States. From a political, economic and security standpoint, Canada is essentially a U.S. province, hardwired into a U.S.-led alliance structure whether it wants to be or not. Certainly, U.S.-Canada relations are not going to crumble because the U.S. is unwilling to use its leverage over the Chinese to protect Canadian companies or because Trudeau and Trump don’t like each other. Still, American power has always been at its most effective not when countries can’t afford to break with the United States but when countries don’t want to. That is exactly why China has singled Canada out. “America First” may mean the U.S. will get what it wants out of trade negotiations with China, but if the U.S. isn’t careful, it might also mean that down the line, its allies will have far less of a reason to put America first themselves.

« Last Edit: May 10, 2019, 02:31:03 PM by Crafty_Dog »

G M

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #38 on: May 09, 2019, 04:43:45 PM »
Until Canada gets rid of PM Zoolander, they are free to go piss up a rope, as far as I am concerned.

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #39 on: May 09, 2019, 05:56:57 PM »
Canada has been a good and real friend.  They rescued our people in Iran during the Carter episode, and they have fought well along side us in Afghanistan are two examples that come to mind.

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #40 on: May 09, 2019, 06:42:51 PM »
Canada has been a good and real friend.  They rescued our people in Iran during the Carter episode, and they have fought well along side us in Afghanistan are two examples that come to mind.

The Canada that was our friend doesn’t exist anymore.

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #41 on: May 10, 2019, 07:28:53 AM »
Disagree, not only based upon what I read, but upon my many dealings with my Canadian friends in the Dog Brothers.

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Re: Canada-US
« Reply #44 on: May 10, 2019, 01:43:13 PM »
Maybe I generalize too much but I was under the impression it is the French Canadians who do not like Americans.  Though anectodal the  Quebec Canadians  I met were less than friendly, unlike ones for English Canada.






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Re: Canada-China-US
« Reply #45 on: May 10, 2019, 05:45:24 PM »
Nope. That is our not good friend Canada complying with an extradition treaty. I question how long until PM Zoolander waves the white flag.


Speaking of our good friend Canada, it would appear that they have put themselves in harm's way with the Chinese with the HuaWei arrest , , ,

https://www.theepochtimes.com/us-european-diplomats-support-canada-in-chinese-court-in-death-penalty-appeal_2915622.html?ref=brief_BreakingNews&utm_source=Epoch+Times+Newsletters&utm_campaign=6ef3c1f0d9-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_05_09_09_39&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_4fba358ecf-6ef3c1f0d9-239065853

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Re: Canada- Wexit, Western Canada Exit
« Reply #46 on: October 23, 2019, 06:24:05 AM »
https://www.vicnews.com/news/wexit-trending-after-election-in-support-of-western-canada-separation/

#Wexit trending after election in support of western Canada separation
The hashtag is a play on Brexit from the U.K

“When one part of Canada votes to destroy another, we don’t have a country,” said Twitter user @JodyDahrouge. “The time has come to go our separate ways.”

[Color map reversed from US colors.]
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I don't want to be ruled by eastern liberals either.  When the US finally splits, make sure we invite the willing areas of Canada to our new coalition.

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Re: Canada- Wexit, Western Canada Exit
« Reply #47 on: October 23, 2019, 06:56:38 PM »
Yes.


https://www.vicnews.com/news/wexit-trending-after-election-in-support-of-western-canada-separation/

#Wexit trending after election in support of western Canada separation
The hashtag is a play on Brexit from the U.K

“When one part of Canada votes to destroy another, we don’t have a country,” said Twitter user @JodyDahrouge. “The time has come to go our separate ways.”

[Color map reversed from US colors.]
-------------------------
I don't want to be ruled by eastern liberals either.  When the US finally splits, make sure we invite the willing areas of Canada to our new coalition.