Democracy Gone Astray

Democracy, being a human construct, needs to be thought of as directionality rather than an object. As such, to understand it requires not so much a description of existing structures and/or other related phenomena but a declaration of intentionality.
This blog aims at creating labeled lists of published infringements of such intentionality, of points in time where democracy strays from its intended directionality. In addition to outright infringements, this blog also collects important contemporary information and/or discussions that impact our socio-political landscape.

All the posts here were published in the electronic media – main-stream as well as fringe, and maintain links to the original texts.

[NOTE: Due to changes I haven't caught on time in the blogging software, all of the 'Original Article' links were nullified between September 11, 2012 and December 11, 2012. My apologies.]

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Chrétien speaks out against Canadian military mission in Iraq

Former prime minister Jean Chretien stepped up his criticism of Canada’s military combat mission against Islamist extremists in Iraq Monday, warning it is just the latest in a long history of interventions by western countries that have left “scars” on the Middle East.

In a conference call with journalists, Chretien described Canada’s military contribution of CF-18 fighter jets as “marginal” and “expensive.”

Canada Post Ends Home Delivery Today For Thousands

Canada Post stops home delivery to 74,000 addresses in 10 communities across the country today, part of the Crown corporation's move to end all urban door-to-door mail service to five million Canadians in five years.

People in the affected areas will have to get mail from their local community mailbox.

There's Nothing Smart About Strategic Voting in the Mayoral Election

During last week's CBC debate, moderator Matt Galloway posed a revealing, and sad, question: is the election about being for something or against it?

It's both. For: I am with Olivia Chow, with whom I agree the most, trust the most and who shares my values the closest. Against: I am not voting for John Tory because I don't trust effortless chameleons and am not starting to vote for conservatives now.

New Tory Commercial On Trudeau Takes Quotes Out Of Context

The Conservative Party's latest attack on Justin Trudeau is missing some pretty important information.

The new commercial released Monday targets the Liberal vote against the mission to bomb ISIS in Iraq and the Liberal leader's now infamous dick joke about "trying to whip out our CF-18s and show them how big they are." However, several of the quotes used in the attack are taken out of context.

The ad focuses on the theme that Trudeau is "just not up to the job" of prime minister. Quotes from various news sources flash across a photo of the Liberal leader looking serene, his hands held as if ready for prayer.

CBSA Audit Finds Sloppy Storage And Disposal Of Items Seized At Border

Five years after a critical audit raised a red flag over the sloppy storage and disposal of goods seized at the border, a followup review found little progress in key areas of tracking and handling the potentially dangerous items.

A new audit of the Canada Border Services Agency found improvement since 2009 on the transfer and disposal of drugs, firearms and child pornography, but "minimal improvement" in other areas of monitoring and oversight, access controls and security management at warehouses.

'Inflated' Housing Market Has Moody's Concerned About 'Risks' To Canada

OTTAWA - Canada is maintaining its triple-A credit rating thanks to a steady economic outlook, but the country also faces potential risks amid mounting household debt and climbing house prices, Moody's Investor Service said.

The U.S. credit rating agency said in a report Monday that Canada's top grade was supported by a "relatively solid economic performance," a strong banking system, relatively low government debt and a projected balanced budget following a series of deficits.

Sliding Oil Prices Will Cost Feds Billions, ‘Re-Order' Canadian Economy: BMO

The steep drop in oil prices in recent months will cost Canada’s federal government as much as $3 billion in lost revenue, according to an analysis from BMO.

Economists Douglas Porter and Robert Kavcic forecast a “a re-ordering of the regional growth ladder” in Canada if oil prices remain low.

Are We in a Golden Age of Spying? A Q&A With Laura Poitras

This article originally appeared at To stay on top of important articles like these, sign up to receive the latest updates from

Here’s a Ripley’s Believe It or Not! stat from our new age of national security. How many Americans have security clearances? The answer: 5.1 million, a figure that reflects the explosive growth of the national security state in the post-9/11 eraa. Imagine the kind of system needed just to vet that many people for access to our secret world (to the tune of billions of dollars). We’re talking here about the total population of Norway and significantly more people than you can find in Costa Rica, Ireland or New Zealand. And yet it’s only about 1.6 percent of the American population, while on ever more matters, the unvetted 98.4 percent of us are meant to be left in the dark.

How San Francisco Is Forcing Its Gay Population Onto The Streets

Even before the sexual abuse, Olivia’s life was characterized by tremendous struggle. Growing up in Amman, Jordan as a member of a tight knit family, her difficulties long preceded any awareness that the male gender she was assigned at birth didn’t quite fit.
Severe dyslexia made her different from other children, and her constant struggle to answer the teacher’s questions resulted in generous amounts of bullying. Her feeling of remove from society only worsened after a family vacation when she was in the fourth grade.

Giving a U.S. Company the Contract for Canada's Community Mailboxes Is Insult To Injury

This week I found out that Canada Post has awarded a lucrative contract "to an American company to supply the new community mailboxes to replace door-to-door mail delivery over the next five years."

It is bad enough that the elimination of door to door mail service will cut 8,000 jobs and cause the elderly, handicapped and rural Canadians distress. But to top it all off when you could have at least had a Canadian company make the boxes not even this will happen. It is like rubbing salted shards of glass in the wound. In December, Canada Post chief executive Deepak Chopra defended the controversial cuts to home delivery, saying the many seniors he consulted welcomed the idea because it would provide them with exercise."

An Open Letter From Some Muslims Who Love Canada and Human Rights

Dear Fellow Canadians:

On Tuesday, October 7 the Harper government voted for military action against ISIS/ISIL notwithstanding all opposition parties opposed it.

We agree that ISIS/ISIL is committing atrocities in the Middle East and has killed and caused to flee from their homes thousands of religious minorities, including Christians and Yazidis, as well as Shia Muslims and ethnic Kurds (many of whom are Sunni Muslims). It has also killed numerous Sunni Muslims who have refused to accept their ideology.

Stephen Harper Acknowledges Possible Terror Attack In Quebec

One of two soldiers wounded in a hit-and-run involving a "radicalized" 25-year-old man in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., has died, Quebec provincial police say.
Martin Rouleau, Quebec driver shot by police, 'radicalized': RCMP
Martin Rouleau, the 25-year-old suspect, was fatally shot on Monday after hitting two soldiers in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, a city about 40 kilometres southeast of Montreal.

The RCMP said Rouleau was known to provincial and federal law enforcement agencies.
Rouleau died of his injuries Monday evening, several hours after he was transported to hospital after being shot by municipal police officers at the end of a high-speed chase. Since the shooting involved municipal officers, provincial police are investigating.
The soldiers' names have not yet been released.

House of Cards, Ontario edition

Francis (Frank) Underwood, the exuberantly cynical and wildly successful protagonist of Netflix's House of Cards, makes it only too easy for other countries to mock America's political culture. But Canadians should restrain their sense of superiority. It's true that in general Canadians don't take politics to the unnerving extremes that are only too common south of the border, where winning is the only rule, as Vince Lombardi might have said. But we are coming along nicely. The Harper government has introduced forms of political bullying and Machiavellian tactics with a gusto that far surpasses anything we've seen before. And then -- you knew this was coming -- there are the Ford Boys, who have plumbed depths so previously unexplored they have even fascinated jaded Americans.