Lawyers take to the streets with students for Montreal’s 35th consecutive night of protest

MONTREAL — As negotiations between student leaders and the provincial Liberals resumed in Quebec City Monday evening after a supper break, more protests took place in different parts of Quebec including Montreal, which hosted its 35th consecutive night of demonstrations.

Lawyers dressed in their courtroom gowns paraded in silence from the city’s main courthouse through the streets of Old Montreal to join the nightly march.

“It is one of the first times I’ve seen lawyers protest in public like this…and I’ve been practising for almost 30 years,” Bruno Grenier said outside the building surrounded by about 250 people, some carrying copies of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Umberto Eco - Eternal Fascism: Fourteen Ways of Looking at a Blackshirt

12. Since both permanent war and heroism are difficult games to play, the Ur-Fascist transfers his will to power to sexual matters.
This is the origin of machismo (which implies both disdain for women and intolerance and condemnation of nonstandard sexual habits, from chastity to homosexuality). Since even sex is a difficult game to play, the Ur-Fascist hero tends to play with weapons — doing so becomes an ersatz phallic exercise.

Umberto Eco - Eternal Fascism: Fourteen Ways of Looking at a Blackshirt

12. Since both permanent war and heroism are difficult games to play, the Ur-Fascist transfers his will to power to sexual matters.

This is the origin of machismo (which implies both disdain for women and intolerance and condemnation of nonstandard sexual habits, from chastity to homosexuality). Since even sex is a difficult game to play, the Ur-Fascist hero tends to play with weapons — doing so becomes an ersatz phallic exercise.

Pierre Trudeau - Just watch me

thug tattoo inspiration

Brigette DePape - Thinking Outside the Ballot Box

“When a government’s agenda does not reflect the true values of its people – as is the case with the Harper government – it is up to every one of us to act to stop it. As Henry David Thoreau explained in his classic 1849 text titled Civil Disobedience, people have a duty not to permit their governments to overrule their consciences, and to not stand by while government makes them agents of injustice. As citizens of Canada during the Harper majority, we are agents of injustice so long as we are silent.”

Brigette DePape - Thinking Outside the Ballot Box

“When a government’s agenda does not reflect the true values of its people – as is the case with the Harper government – it is up to every one of us to act to stop it. As Henry David Thoreau explained in his classic 1849 text titled Civil Disobedience, people have a duty not to permit their governments to overrule their consciences, and to not stand by while government makes them agents of injustice. As citizens of Canada during the Harper majority, we are agents of injustice so long as we are silent.”

Raymond Taavel   June 9, 1963 - April 17, 2012

It’s tempting in this day and age of legislated liberties to think that a personal or collective vigilance is no longer required. It’s easy to lull ourselves into complacency, thinking there’s nothing more left to fight for, or nothing more to achieve. Fighting back comes in many forms: reaching out, building bridges, educating and, if need be, defending ourselves from physical harm.

Raymond Taavel   June 9, 1963 - April 17, 2012

It’s tempting in this day and age of legislated liberties to think that a personal or collective vigilance is no longer required. It’s easy to lull ourselves into complacency, thinking there’s nothing more left to fight for, or nothing more to achieve. Fighting back comes in many forms: reaching out, building bridges, educating and, if need be, defending ourselves from physical harm.

THIS SATURDAY IN VANCOUVER
"Systemic risk in the financial system can be remedied by the taxpayer, but no one will come to the rescue if the environment is destroyed."
— Noam Chomsky

"Systemic risk in the financial system can be remedied by the taxpayer, but no one will come to the rescue if the environment is destroyed."

— Noam Chomsky

Noam Chomsky - Is the World Too Big to Fail?
While wealth and power have narrowly concentrated, for most of the population real incomes have stagnated and people have been getting by with increased work hours, debt, and asset inflation, regularly destroyed by the financial crises that began as the regulatory apparatus was dismantled starting in the 1980s.None of this is problematic for the very wealthy, who benefit from a government insurance policy called “too big to fail.” The banks and investment firms can make risky transactions, with rich rewards, and when the system inevitably crashes, they can run to the nanny state for a taxpayer bailout, clutching their copies of Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman.That has been the regular process since the Reagan years, each crisis more extreme than the last — for the public population, that is. Right now, real unemployment is at Depression levels for much of the population, while Goldman Sachs, one of the main architects of the current crisis, is richer than ever. It has just quietly announced $17.5 billion in compensation for last year, with CEO Lloyd Blankfein receiving a $12.6 million bonus while his base salary more than triples.It wouldn’t do to focus attention on such facts as these. Accordingly, propaganda must seek to blame others, in the past few months, public sector workers, their fat salaries, exorbitant pensions, and so on: all fantasy, on the model of Reaganite imagery of black mothers being driven in their limousines to pick up welfare checks — and other models that need not be mentioned. We all must tighten our belts; almost all, that is.Teachers are a particularly good target, as part of the deliberate effort to destroy the public education system from kindergarten through the universities by privatization — again, good for the wealthy, but a disaster for the population, as well as the long-term health of the economy, but that is one of the externalities that is put to the side insofar as market principles prevail.
Joel Bakan - Constitutional and international law at risk under Bill 22

The B.C. Liberal government is poised, once again, to violate the legal rights of workers, this time with Bill 22, which, if it becomes law, will prohibit teachers from striking and limit their collective bargaining rights.
In 2007, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the government had violated the Canadian Charter by imposing legislative restrictions on the rights of health workers to bargain collectively. In April 2011, the British Columbia Supreme Court followed that decision to rule that legislation concerning teachers was unconstitutional, and thereby invalid, because it prohibited bargaining on class size, class composition and the ratios of teachers to students.
It is those very same restrictions that the government now seeks to reinstate with Bill 22, a disturbing disregard for such a recent judicial declaration that they are constitutionally invalid.
Bill 22 also flies in the face of Canada’s international treaty obligations. On no fewer than 10 occasions — half of which concerned teachers — the Freedom of Association Committee of the United Nations International Labour Organization has found the B.C. Liberal government to be in breach of labour treaties. In a recent report, concerning legislation similar to Bill 22, the committee noted as particularly problematic the tendency of this government to legislatively prohibit strikes, impose rates and working conditions, circumscribe the scope of collective bargaining, and restructure the bargaining process.
The proposed Bill 22 does all of those things and more. As such, it almost certainly violates international law as well as constitutional law.
Governments are obliged to govern according to law. That is what distinguishes democracies from tyrannies. As a fundamental democratic principle, the rule of law is seriously jeopardized when governments play fast and loose with constitutional and international laws, as this government is now doing with Bill 22.

Noam Chomsky - Is the World Too Big to Fail?

While wealth and power have narrowly concentrated, for most of the population real incomes have stagnated and people have been getting by with increased work hours, debt, and asset inflation, regularly destroyed by the financial crises that began as the regulatory apparatus was dismantled starting in the 1980s.

None of this is problematic for the very wealthy, who benefit from a government insurance policy called “too big to fail.” The banks and investment firms can make risky transactions, with rich rewards, and when the system inevitably crashes, they can run to the nanny state for a taxpayer bailout, clutching their copies of Friedrich Hayek and Milton Friedman.

That has been the regular process since the Reagan years, each crisis more extreme than the last — for the public population, that is. Right now, real unemployment is at Depression levels for much of the population, while Goldman Sachs, one of the main architects of the current crisis, is richer than ever. It has just quietly announced $17.5 billion in compensation for last year, with CEO Lloyd Blankfein receiving a $12.6 million bonus while his base salary more than triples.

It wouldn’t do to focus attention on such facts as these. Accordingly, propaganda must seek to blame others, in the past few months, public sector workers, their fat salaries, exorbitant pensions, and so on: all fantasy, on the model of Reaganite imagery of black mothers being driven in their limousines to pick up welfare checks — and other models that need not be mentioned. We all must tighten our belts; almost all, that is.

Teachers are a particularly good target, as part of the deliberate effort to destroy the public education system from kindergarten through the universities by privatization — again, good for the wealthy, but a disaster for the population, as well as the long-term health of the economy, but that is one of the externalities that is put to the side insofar as market principles prevail.

Joel Bakan - Constitutional and international law at risk under Bill 22

The B.C. Liberal government is poised, once again, to violate the legal rights of workers, this time with Bill 22, which, if it becomes law, will prohibit teachers from striking and limit their collective bargaining rights.

In 2007, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that the government had violated the Canadian Charter by imposing legislative restrictions on the rights of health workers to bargain collectively. In April 2011, the British Columbia Supreme Court followed that decision to rule that legislation concerning teachers was unconstitutional, and thereby invalid, because it prohibited bargaining on class size, class composition and the ratios of teachers to students.

It is those very same restrictions that the government now seeks to reinstate with Bill 22, a disturbing disregard for such a recent judicial declaration that they are constitutionally invalid.

Bill 22 also flies in the face of Canada’s international treaty obligations. On no fewer than 10 occasions — half of which concerned teachers — the Freedom of Association Committee of the United Nations International Labour Organization has found the B.C. Liberal government to be in breach of labour treaties. In a recent report, concerning legislation similar to Bill 22, the committee noted as particularly problematic the tendency of this government to legislatively prohibit strikes, impose rates and working conditions, circumscribe the scope of collective bargaining, and restructure the bargaining process.

The proposed Bill 22 does all of those things and more. As such, it almost certainly violates international law as well as constitutional law.

Governments are obliged to govern according to law. That is what distinguishes democracies from tyrannies. As a fundamental democratic principle, the rule of law is seriously jeopardized when governments play fast and loose with constitutional and international laws, as this government is now doing with Bill 22.

Report Election Fraud

This week we’ve seen mounting evidence of widespread fraud in the 2011 election. Now we need your help to find people who were directly affected, and lay the groundwork for possible new elections.
Over the last week we have seen mounting evidence of systematic fraud in the 2011 election. Now we need to learn the whole truth. Nearly 35,000 Canadians who have already taken action to protect our democracy. Together we can form a powerful fact-finding network, and lay the groundwork for possible new elections in the affected ridings.
Canadians’ confidence in the fairness and legitimacy of the last election has been deeply shaken. The news keeps getting worse. Call center employees have reported they were instructed to send misleading messages seemingly designed to stop non-Conservatives from voting. As the list of potentially affected individuals and ridings continues to grow, the NDP, Liberals and Greens have called for full investigations in all affected ridings.In response, the Conservative government has dismissed allegations of systematic election fraud as a mere “smear campaign”.
We need to help find the truth about what happened in the last election and use this knowledge to choose the best ways to restore the integrity of our democracy.
When this story broke last week, it started a 30-day count-down to begin court proceedings that could lead to new elections in the affected ridings. Our strategy may include legal challenges.
Were you, or was anyone you know, the target of any voter suppression tactics, or do you have any information about electoral fraud in your riding? OR, would you like to learn more about how you could challenge the result in your riding?

Report Election Fraud

This week we’ve seen mounting evidence of widespread fraud in the 2011 election. Now we need your help to find people who were directly affected, and lay the groundwork for possible new elections.

Over the last week we have seen mounting evidence of systematic fraud in the 2011 election. Now we need to learn the whole truth. Nearly 35,000 Canadians who have already taken action to protect our democracy. Together we can form a powerful fact-finding network, and lay the groundwork for possible new elections in the affected ridings.

Canadians’ confidence in the fairness and legitimacy of the last election has been deeply shaken. The news keeps getting worse. Call center employees have reported they were instructed to send misleading messages seemingly designed to stop non-Conservatives from voting. As the list of potentially affected individuals and ridings continues to grow, the NDP, Liberals and Greens have called for full investigations in all affected ridings.In response, the Conservative government has dismissed allegations of systematic election fraud as a mere “smear campaign”.

We need to help find the truth about what happened in the last election and use this knowledge to choose the best ways to restore the integrity of our democracy.

When this story broke last week, it started a 30-day count-down to begin court proceedings that could lead to new elections in the affected ridings. Our strategy may include legal challenges.

Were you, or was anyone you know, the target of any voter suppression tactics, or do you have any information about electoral fraud in your riding? OR, would you like to learn more about how you could challenge the result in your riding?

30 seat fraud:

The “robo-call” and voter-suppression scandal is rapidly threatening to become a full-blown political crisis for Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, with the number of ridings where dirty tricks are alleged to have skewed races in the last federal election climbing to almost 30.
The New Democrats and Liberals on Sunday both listed 29 ridings in which they claim voters were either misled by automated calls purportedly from Elections Canada about where to cast ballots, or where live callers misrepresented themselves as working for rival parties. In some cases, voters allegedly received harassing late-night calls.

30 seats targeted:

Be it coincidence or political calculation, Rickford’s Kenora riding also sits squarely on the Conservative’s list of 30 ridings that are at risk of being lost or possible to steal away. The list of so-called targeted ridings is central to Conservative Leader Stephen Harper’s national campaign, which started the election holding 143 seats, a dozen short of a majority government.

what a coincidence
demand a full public inquiry

30 seat fraud:

The “robo-call” and voter-suppression scandal is rapidly threatening to become a full-blown political crisis for Stephen Harper’s Conservatives, with the number of ridings where dirty tricks are alleged to have skewed races in the last federal election climbing to almost 30.

The New Democrats and Liberals on Sunday both listed 29 ridings in which they claim voters were either misled by automated calls purportedly from Elections Canada about where to cast ballots, or where live callers misrepresented themselves as working for rival parties. In some cases, voters allegedly received harassing late-night calls.

30 seats targeted:

Be it coincidence or political calculation, Rickford’s Kenora riding also sits squarely on the Conservative’s list of 30 ridings that are at risk of being lost or possible to steal away. The list of so-called targeted ridings is central to Conservative Leader Stephen Harper’s national campaign, which started the election holding 143 seats, a dozen short of a majority government.

what a coincidence

demand a full public inquiry

Ben La Desh - Doctor Bills

music to rave to while appreciating Medicare

While the pro-surveillance spin campaign whirs into gear here in Canada, it’s interesting to note that Western governments all happen to be pushing this shit at the same time.
United States: Internet Providers to Save User Data Under Child-Porn Bill
Australia: Phone, net watchers fuel ‘surveillance state’ fears
United Kingdom: Phone and email records to be stored in new spy plan
do something
…and if you haven’t read 1984, this might be a good time to do so.

While the pro-surveillance spin campaign whirs into gear here in Canada, it’s interesting to note that Western governments all happen to be pushing this shit at the same time.

do something

…and if you haven’t read 1984, this might be a good time to do so.

"either stand with us or with the child pornographers.”
– Harper Government
"The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation."
– Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf
do something

"either stand with us or with the child pornographers.”

– Harper Government

"The state must declare the child to be the most precious treasure of the people. As long as the government is perceived as working for the benefit of the children, the people will happily endure almost any curtailment of liberty and almost any deprivation."

– Adolf Hitler in Mein Kampf

do something

In the last federal election, 61% of voters cast ballots for change, but the vote split and our broken electoral system gave Stephen Harper a majority of seats in Parliament.
Now, if we work together, we can make sure our next government represents a majority of Canadians and fixes our broken electoral system. Here’s how we can do it:
During the next election, the NDP, Liberals and Greens can cooperate in key ridings to defeat Stephen Harper’s government, and then pass electoral reform to make Canada’s democracy work better for everyone.
We can do it, but only if we start now.
The NDP and Liberals are preparing to choose their next leaders, and cooperation is a major issue in these debates. We need to show the leadership candidates that thousands of Canadians are willing to take action to support cooperation for electoral reform.
This is a long-term campaign, but the first deadline is just days away - February 18th is the last day to join the NDP to vote in this leadership election.
This could be the start of something big.
Last Thursday, we sent a message to the whole Leadnow community. We asked if you would support political cooperation between the NDP, Liberals and Greens to defeat the current government in the next election, and then pass electoral reform. Almost 10,000 responded. 95% said yes, with an astounding 72% “strongly agreeing”.[1]
Now, as the NDP and Liberals choose their new leaders, we urgently need to turn that incredible support into real action.

Here’s the proposal: during the next federal election, the opposition parties agree to work together in key ridings to defeat Conservative incumbents. After the election, the NDP, Liberals and Greens cooperate to pass electoral reform and make sure our government better reflects the values and priorities of all Canadians.
Right now, both the Liberals and NDP are looking for new leaders. Cooperation is a major issue in these party elections, and your voice can make a big difference. To get started, we need thousands of Canadians to tell the opposition parties that we want them to work together for our common good.

In the last federal election, 61% of voters cast ballots for change, but the vote split and our broken electoral system gave Stephen Harper a majority of seats in Parliament.

Now, if we work together, we can make sure our next government represents a majority of Canadians and fixes our broken electoral system. Here’s how we can do it:

During the next election, the NDP, Liberals and Greens can cooperate in key ridings to defeat Stephen Harper’s government, and then pass electoral reform to make Canada’s democracy work better for everyone.

We can do it, but only if we start now.

The NDP and Liberals are preparing to choose their next leaders, and cooperation is a major issue in these debates. We need to show the leadership candidates that thousands of Canadians are willing to take action to support cooperation for electoral reform.

This is a long-term campaign, but the first deadline is just days away - February 18th is the last day to join the NDP to vote in this leadership election.


This could be the start of something big.

Last Thursday, we sent a message to the whole Leadnow community. We asked if you would support political cooperation between the NDP, Liberals and Greens to defeat the current government in the next election, and then pass electoral reform. Almost 10,000 responded. 95% said yes, with an astounding 72% “strongly agreeing”.[1]

Now, as the NDP and Liberals choose their new leaders, we urgently need to turn that incredible support into real action.

Here’s the proposal: during the next federal election, the opposition parties agree to work together in key ridings to defeat Conservative incumbents. After the election, the NDP, Liberals and Greens cooperate to pass electoral reform and make sure our government better reflects the values and priorities of all Canadians.

Right now, both the Liberals and NDP are looking for new leaders. Cooperation is a major issue in these party elections, and your voice can make a big difference. To get started, we need thousands of Canadians to tell the opposition parties that we want them to work together for our common good.