This Blog will discuss politics, government, corruption, police, S.I.U., courts, education, min. of attorney general, min. of labour, v.o.i.c.e. and other current and past events of interest to concerned citizens. In the "About me" section to the right and down I have included the names of persons whom I have tremendous respect for. Their influence on me however has been primarily environmental (and personal) and this is therefore a disclaimer that all words posted on this Blog/Website are mine and I alone am responsible for them. I say this with the greatest respect and affection to my friends.
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
Seven years later and the case continues to drag on. Unbelievable. This case put Canada squarely on the world wide map for human rights abuses by either governments or their police forces. Toronto Police and their reinforcements essentially went apeshit over a few bad apples who vandalized a couple of police cars. "Kettling" or trapping large numbers of people by blocking both ends of the street was done by police in an ill guided and ill managed attempt to catch a few perpetrators. All the police accomplished was to prove to the world as well as canadaians paying attention that our police forces are out of control, unaccountable and non-transparent.
Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the on-going story of Adam Nobody. He was beaten by one police officer while others stood around and watched. The officer has received a criminal conviction for assault yet somehow remains a police officer. This is absurd. Mr. Nobody is attempting to have him removed as a police officer which certainly seems to make sense under all the circumstances. The title of today's article in the Record is "First of two G20 police misconduct cases delayed".
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
In the U.S. there have been many videos of unprovoked and unnecessary police shootings of citizens. here in Canada we had the horrific videos of the shooting of Sammy Yatin on a Toronto street car. Here in Kitchener we had a shooting of a young man two years ago on Brybeck Cres. The man, Beau Baker, was in need of help and he called the Police for it. They responded with seven bullets according to today's Waterloo Region Record story titled "Family of man shot by police mark second anniversary".
Beau's mother and brother state that they still do not have answers as to how and why their family member was shot to death outside his apartment building two years ago. Initially the province refused to hold a coroner's inquest into the death however changed their mind after Beau's mother said in a media interview that she did not know the details of her son's death or the name of the officer involved in the shooting. The Special Investigations Unit (SIU) did investigate and refused to lay charges against the officer but does not provide their reports to the public.
The family are suing the police over the death of Beau. Why do I expect that is the only way they will get even a half assed honest investigation and answers to their questions? Oh yes it's from being involved in far too many so called reviews and investigations that are simply a sham. In Ontario truth is the first casualty of power and money.
Monday, March 27, 2017
Well as expected my Application went nowhere fast. I have as well in the past applied to the Region`s environmental committee unsuccessfully. Apparently very well informed citizens with a proven talent at ferreting out anomolys, errors and omissions in technical reports are not wanted at the Region. This could also have to do with Ken seiling`s very bad attitude towards myself going back to approximately 1991 as per a now proven unreliable source in Elmira. Ken used to enjoy coffees around her breakfast table way back when.
My Application to the Police Services Board focused on my long history as a human rights and environmental activist in Waterloo Region. Generally speaking this is the kiss of death if you wish to get appointed by politicians to anything however with all the problems the last few years with our Waterloo Region Police Service I figured they might be interested in a token radical. Not so. I had also advised them in my Application of my critical posts in this Blog over the last five years dealing with our local force. Again not a nibble. No interview, no words of encouragement.
That said the people in charge of Applications were however courteous and respectful. It`s the politicians who were and are the problem as they are generally looking for citizens who are either all ready on board or who won`t make waves no matter how obviously silly or not in the public interest, the decisions are.
Saturday, March 25, 2017
Seems like K-W residents are voting with their feet. They are going to and buying marijuana at various available medical dispensaries in Kitchener-Waterloo. Something like Vancouver only what a decade or more behind them? Keep in mind both cities are under Federal drug jurisdiction. Apparently Vancouver police feel that their resources should be focused on crime and criminals. Not so much here locally.
Federal pot legislation looms this summer. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has indicated that he and ther federal government are intent on decriminalizing marijuana use whether for recreational or even medicinal use, with or without a doctor's prescription. Apparently the current dispensary that was raided was supplying in some cases pot to those with a prescription. Customers included cancer patients, the elderly and one person who found that marijuana helped him beat his addiction to opioids. Interesting. If my brother, a stroke victim, was still alive I would probably have gotten him some to help with his ongoing pain and discomfort from his stroke. That said when I did suggest it over the last couple of years he wasn't particularily enthusiastic. Who knows? It might have made his last year or two much better.
The Waterloo Region Record article about this raid is titled "Pot dispensary busted".
Friday, March 24, 2017
A young woman is dead. A police officer chasing the suspect is exonerated. The driver being chased is sentenced to eight years in jail. Whether sentenced to eight months or eight years the young woman is just as dead. While the driver pled guilty to multiple charges including criminal negligence causing death; the question remains. Would he have been driving as fast and as recklessly if he wasn't being pursued by an O.P.P. officer right up till the moment he lost control of his vehicle, killing the innocent by-stander?
I would like to know what exactly is police chase policy. At what point in either other traffic, speed or location is a police officer legally required to end the pursuit? Or is this policy simply a vague, subjective one such as it's the officer's discretion to stop when he realizes that the fleeing individual is possibly going to cause an accident with injuries or death.
The story in today's Waterloo Region Record is titled "Officer cleared in crash that killed U of G grad".
Thursday, March 23, 2017
There is an extremely powerful article in today's Waterloo Region Record titled "Miners shine spotlight on WSIB". The author is Janice Martell and she is speaking this afternoon at 2:30 pm. at McMaster University, Wilson Hall 1003. Her article is about a company/government initiative involving dousing miners with ground aluminum dust known as McIntyre Powder. It was a forced industrial health experiment and was hoped to be a method to prevent silicosis in miners. It did not work and in fact caused more harm than good.
Of course the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) have since decided that neurological disorders are not occupational diseases when claimed to be a result of aluminum exposure. Pretty slick isn't it? This is but one more example of our provincial government looking out for the interests of private corporations literally over the dead and dying bodies of Ontario workers.
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
Earlier this month the Waterloo Region Record carried a story titled "Guelph city police officer charged with discreditable conduct". At first blush I felt that this was an appropriate route of action for the Guelph Service to take but in hindsight I'm less sure. As I read the article a sister of an accused in a local murder made some comments on facebook that may have been disrespectful of the murder victim. Meanwhile the murder victim had been discovered at home by an off-duty Guelph police officer. She was a cousin of the officer's wife.
Shortly afterwards the police officer left some sort of phone message on the phone, allegedly "uncivil" and possibly rude, for the sister of the accused who had died the same day as the murder however in a car accident. For his phone message the officer has been charged with discreditable conduct.
Wow this is a difficult one. Clearly both the sister of the accused and the husband of the murder victim's cousin have different ideas about the people involved. With both a murder and another death involved it is hardly surprising that emotions were high and possibly common sense a little lower. If the off-duty police officer had been anyone other than a police officer I seriously doubt that police or any other authorities would have gotten involved. It does not appear that threats were involved.
Is this a case of a police officer behaving unprofessionally while off duty albeit while under significant personal stress? Is it appropriate to charge him with discreditable conduct under those circumstances? Waterloo Regional Police had decided that criminal charges were inappropriate. Seems a little severe to me.
Monday, March 20, 2017
Well first off I have to share a political cartoon that was in the waterloo Region Record newspaper last Tuesday, March 14/17. It shows a car up on blocks with a blindfolded lady representing Justice sitting in the car. The caption is "Wheels of Justice' and all the tires are off with the bare front wheels resting on a block of wood labelled Court Case and the back wheels on a block of wood labelled Back Logs. In my opinion Backlogs are but a symptom of a horribly corrupted judicial system in this country.
The Record also has an article titled "Garage gets chance to fight liability for joyrider's injuries". This is a very sad case that occurred in the Paisley-Walkerton area of Ontario. A fifteen year old went on a joyride with his sixteen year friend in a stolen car. Neither had driver's licences. The fifteen year old suffered catastrophic brain injuries in the ensuing car crash. He is suing his friend, his friend's mother and the garage from which the car was stolen.
A local court found the garage liable as did the Ontario Court of Appeal. The case has now gone to the Supreme Court of Canada. This is a tough one. Apparently the lower court feels that a duty of care operates independently of the illegal or immoral conduct of an injured party. Fair enough especially with minors but my question is to what extent that duty of care operates. Sure you can't shoot a trespassing teenager in the back as he's leaving your property. In fact as long as you or your family are not threatened you can not legally take physical action against the teen at all. In this case however it's dealing with allegedly leaving car keys in a car on your own private property. Both trespassing and then theft took place prior to the teen being injured by his friend's driving. This is a tough one to figure out.
Saturday, March 18, 2017
It took lawsuits to get our Canadian government to admit their complicity in the torture and abuse of three Canadian citizens who had been held illegally in Syria. What kind of hypocrites are our federal government (former) when they publicly proclaim that we are a multicultural society and then cheerfully throw non-native Canadians under the bus for what: political points with the ....... Americans?
"The former judge cited the RCMP, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and Foreign Affairs for mistakes in the cases.". The Waterloo Region Record carried this story today titled "Compensation, apologizes for three Canadians tortured in Syria". Canadian government officials stated that they apologized for "...any role Canadian officials may have played in relation to their detention and mistreatment abroad and any resulting harm.".
This is the reality. Our governmnts don't give a crap about any of us, only about themselves and their political status. Everything else is smoke and mirrors helping to make our government look good.
Friday, March 17, 2017
Sure seems to me as well to be sending a message to the public from the justice system. Wealthy accused as well as wealthy convicted offenders are treated differently. Luisa D'Amato has pointed this out quite clearly in her Opinion piece of March 14/17 titled "Justice shouldn't have a price tag". Some of us I expect are basically denoted as potential raw materials, early on, for the grist mill known as the justice system. Whether it's people who don't walk away from an insult or disrespectful behaviour or others arrested for civil disobedience; our justice system is essentially deaf, dumb, blind and politically correct. Afterall who do you think hires, appoints and finances our judicial system? Well we pay for it albeit lying politicians do all the rest.
Luisa's article is about a young man who essentially through very bad behaviour was begging for jail time. He didn't get it because his parents had $65,000 to invest in him via the Betty Ford addiction treatment centre in Minnesota. Essentially the young man bought his way out of jail by spending 4 1/2 months in a beautiful rehab centre. Not exactly the Don Jail or the Kingston pen.
Thursday, March 16, 2017
This is getting bizarre. Today's Waterloo Region Record advises us that Maurice Rivard has spent the last two weeks in St. Mary's hospital and then in the infirmary at Maplehurst Jail in Milton. He is the Cambridge man who was shot by a Waterloo Regional Police officer two weeks ago. He has been charged with attempting to disarm Const. Robert Prentice of the Waterloo Regional Police. We are not yet advised if he was allegedly attempting to take Const. Prentice's Taser (stun gun) from him or if he was trying to liberate the officer of his handgun.
Here's where it gets weird. Mr. Rivard has just been granted bail. He is out of custody and staying with family while recuperating. The provincial Special Investigations Unit is investigating the incident. I can't believe that bail was granted unless Mr. Rivard has a spotless or nearly spotless record. If that is the case then what the hell was going on that the officer felt the need to shoot Mr. Rivard in the torso? Mr. Rivard goes back to court on April 21/17. Somebody has screwed up badly here and I wonder exactly who. The title of today's Record article is "Man shot by police officer gets bail on birthday".
Wednesday, March 15, 2017
Phew that's a relief. Afterall what would we be teaching our children if it ever got out that our public school board did practice the dark arts of obfuscation, fictional fantasies, alternate facts and being truth challenged? It turns out according to today's Waterloo Region Record that the WRDSB simply practiced secrecy, errors of omission and keeping parents and trustees in the dark. Lying? Noooooo way!
The article on the front page of the Record is titled "School board secrecy amid Vimy turmoil". The sub-title is "FOI documents show board staff kept trustees and parents in dark on cancelled trip being revived". Well really who can blame the senior staff of the WRDSB? People misrepresent and fudge for very legitimate reasons. These include diminished expectations of being caught plus being powerful enough, via taxpayers money, to always have your legal team chomping at the bit sort of like a pit bull. Little or no transparency normally helps as does love. Yes you heard it here "love". Being able to love the Ontario Ministry of Education. Afterall doesn't love mean never having to say you're sorry? Isn't love the reverse of accountability? Having to answer for one's "communications failures" certainly isn't the same as having to answer for say lying for example. The latter is so old school. Our WRDSB are if anything up with the times. They are modern. Haven't they told us that over the years? Who wouldn't believe them?
I'm kind of spitballing here but I wonder if they could make more money by holding seminars for provincial ministries as well as for corporations facing adverse public relations. These seminars could assist say the Ontario Ministry of Environment and Climate Change in their dealings with Elmira, Ontario residents upset over their failures with the Canagagigue Creek. Similarily perhaps Chemtura Canada and their consultants could use a refresher course on keeping people in the dark. Yes they are already good at it but there's no shame in honing one's skills. Well done WRDSB. You have restored my faith in your basic ideals.
Tuesday, March 14, 2017
Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record has a very disturbing article titled "Man alleges Detroit police framed him". Wow that's certainly not subtle. It's an in your face allegation of criminal conduct by a specific police force. The evidence presented in the article is very compelling and disturbing. Desmond Ricks was convicted of second degree murder 25 years ago on what he states was "...sham evidence- bullets that didn't come from the victim.".
The University of Michigan law school have an Innocence Clinic. Their director states that Detroit police used to be infamous for taking constitutional shortcuts in order to close murder cases. Further he states that "the Detroit police lab was shut down after a 2008 audit revealed sloppy work, including the botched analysis of gun evidence.".
Meanwhile a witness originally against Mr. Ricks has recanted her testimony stating that she was frightened by police and bullied by a prosecutor.
Hand it to homo sapiens. We are capable of taking institutions allegedly dedicated to truth and justice and perverting them at will to suit the purposes of those in charge. Shameful and a wake up call.
Saturday, March 11, 2017
They are not rare. They are not exceptional. They are however both disgusting and under reported. My God we call ourselves a civilized society and allegedly we can't stop these assaults from happening in our Nursing Homes here in Ontario. Bullshit!
Today's Waterloo Region Record carries the following story titled "Daughter takes father's beating case to Hoskins". Her 86 year old father was attacked while sleeping and suffered head trauma, bleeding on the brain, a swollen bruised and bloody face and black eyes. He has been in hospital since the attack in January. The culprit was beaten by another resident who had Alzheimer's and who wandered into his room at 2 am. in the morning.
My own father suffered the loss of part of his finger in an intentional "accident" at Sunnyside Home in Kitchener, Ontario years ago. Then he either fell or was pushed and broke his hip. Surgery was done to repair it and while successful he died of pneumonia afterwards.
My father was a good family man and provider. He was a veteran of the second world war serving on corvettes with distinction for five years. He ended up with Alzheimers disease in a local nursing home and it killed him. Nice thank you from Canada for his years of hard work, dedication to his family and service to his country.
Friday, March 10, 2017
Yesterday's Waterloo Region Record carried a Letter To The Editor from Barry Little, Executive Director of Kids "n" Dad Shared Support. Mr. Little quotes a number of comments from Superior Court Justice Grant Campbell. Justice Campbell stated that the child and parents "have been consumed and trampled by the Frankenstein process.". He further refers to the child welfare system as broken and that our family law system is only going to get worse. He further asserts that these conditions have created an "unworkable and abusive " system. Wow! That pretty much sums up my attitude in regards to much of the legal system not just family law and the lack of timely transparency and accountability of the Children's Aid Society. The title of Mr. Little's Letter To The editor is "Solution needed for "broken" system".
Monday, March 6, 2017
At first I thought I was in an alternate universe. This story was published in the Waterloo Region Record last Saturday and titled "Harassment and "toxic" environment found at B.C. school board". Allegedly the elected trustees of the Vancouver School Board were harassing and bullying the senior management team of the Board. At least an external investigation done by a single lawyer says so. Of interest to me is that the Minister of Education came in and fired all but one of the elected trustees. Wow that's bizarre and perhaps even worse than bizarre. Then the same minister publicly stated his great confidence in board staff and the one trustee he reappointed. Coincidentally or not the single trustee reappointed is a former school district superintendant in nearby Delta B.C.. Hmm I'm beginning to get a whim of something rotten here.
What seems to have brought things to a head is the issue of school closures. Apparently a number of publicly elected trustees were against so doing whereas the board staff and the province were in favour. The plot thickens. Why I find this bizarre is the gamesmanship and dirty dealings I've personally witnessed here in Waterloo Region. They were beyond compare and yes the trustees were somewhat strongly split. Many were former teachers and in my opinion co-opted in favour of board staff and the status quo. Others I would describe as reformers and far more unbiased in their belief that students not board staff, teachers and their unions came first. To me it appears that things came to a head and staff walked out. In normal businesses when staff walk out (especially non-union or mid contract) they all get fired, but school boards are not remotely normal. The addition of comments from another provincial agency namely WorkSafeBC simply add to the nonsense. Who the hell got them involved and why? Were the senior management team treated disrespectfully or worse by some trustees? I don't know for certain. What I do know is this whole things smells of a manufactured crisis for political purposes.
Saturday, March 4, 2017
So was the man shot with a taser first and then shot with a gun? Or in the alternative was the officer shot with a taser and then he responded with his service handgun? To say details are sketchy is an understatement. Then we find out that the man has been charged with "attempting to disarm a police officer". What the hell? Was this before or after he was shot with a taser? Was it before or after he was shot with a handgun? Which or both (assuming the taser was the police officer's) did he try to take away from the officer? Finally was the man now in hospital, impaired at the time of the incident? It seems as if that is somewhat sketchily implied with the inclusion of a 911 call fifteen minutes prior claiming an erratic driver at Belmont Avenue and Highland Road. It was fifteen minutes later that the accused was stopped on Lilac St at Ottawa Street.
Was the driver stopped at Lilac and Ottawa St. the same driver who allegedly was reported for erratic driving fifteen minutes earlier in a different location? Did the police get the right guy or the wrong guy? Was the officer over enthusiastic/aggressive or was the accused seriously behaving in a dangerous manner? We the public need to know what the hell happened here. Fortunately local police shootings are rare but they do happen and citizens do die because of it. Are our police officers appropriately trained to deescalate situations or do some of them go rogue and over react to any verbal disrespect or refusals to obey their orders? The article in today's Waterloo Region Record is titled "Man shot by officer is charged".
Thursday, March 2, 2017
At least Luisa D'Amato of the Waterloo Region Record seems to think that they are. The title of her article in today's Record is "Board disregards needs of autistic boy". Luisa starts her article with "They don't give out service dogs to just anyone". She follows with "But the Waterloo Catholic District School Board, which has no expertise in the matter, has decided that this advice isn't important, and that the dog isn't necessary or welcome with Kenner at his school.". Of further interest is that the waterloo Region District School Board has twelve service dogs with students in classes whereas the Catholic Board has exactly zero. It certainly does look like a pattern there to me. The Board have been taken to the Human Rights Commission by Kenner's father. Amazingly Kenner's mother is a sitting Trustee with the Catholic Board yet no ground has been given to date by the Board to accomodate Kenner. This may change after the Human Rights Commission make their decision.
Wednesday, March 1, 2017
Why is all the heavy lifting done by unpaid, volunteer citizens? Whether it's Chemtura Canada in Elmira failing to clean up the drinking water aquifers on time (2028), or the ongoing and ever twisting and turning Jigs Hollow Gravel Pit saga, it has been citizen volunteers who have been on the case literally for decades. In some cases local politicians don't even have any respect or appreciation for the time, effort and positive contributions citizens have made to the Elmira cleanup. Currently the proposed but overdue improvements to the cleanup of the Elmira Aquifers are solely the result of steps the last CPAC took in May 2012 in calling out Chemtura and the M.O.E. over their pathetic cleanup efforts.
The process for gravel pits follows the same pathetic process for contaminated sites with the notable exception that it is the Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry acting as the alleged professionals promoting the public interest versus the Ont. Ministry of Environment so pretending regarding environmental matters. The M.O.E. here in Elmira Ontario have long ago been exposed as nothing but a mouthpiece and a shield especially for large polluting industries.
The process entails well off corporations hiring shills disguised as consultants who then produce reports by credentialed individuals whose opinion is very helpful to the wishes of the corporation who hired them. Occasionally peer reports will be requested by municipal or regional bodies but certainly in the case of Chemtura Canada, not nearly often enough. Their consultants have been producing drivel, junk science and overall CRAP for at least thirty years. This is why and how they get their way while both human and wildlife pay the price in order to save them millions of dollars.