Saturday, April 30, 2005

The Come Back Kid

As the Toronto Star poll says; a week in politics is a long time. And this week was the return of the Contender.

With the week off from Parliment, the Party Leaders swept on Ontario to lobby for votes, to see if there is an appitite to kick the Liberals out of office.

Paul Martin did a Hail Mary by apologizing to Canadians and Quebecois for six minutes on TV last weekend, and then agreeing to a new budget deal with the NDP by Monday.

That left Harper 'flabergasted' and angry, and his tone was vitrolic. This week was a mini 'annus horriblus' for the Conservatives. Come hell or high water Harper would show he was not impotent and damn them lefties he would call an election. Knowing full well he had the the backing of the permanent opposition party in the house; the BQ.

Harper declared class war in front of a partisan crowd of business people. How dare they use taxpayers money to benefit....ummmmm.....taxpayers., Harper declared. Instead they should have given tax cuts to the corporations. See my comment: Mr. Harper Friend of the Working Man.

Well that didn't fly in Canada this week. It was Harper the dodo, lots of flap no lift.

As Brian Laghi of the Globe and Mail writes today:

"As for Mr. Harper, it appears his baggage from the Reform Party and last year's election campaign, along with his somewhat aggressive performance during the past week, have combined to brand him in the public's eye as a man with a hidden agenda. Recall, also, that the Reform Party was seen by many as a party of anger and Mr. Harper's aggressive performance in the wake of Mr. Martin's s national televised address, which he called a sad spectacle, may well remind them of what it used to be about."

Instead the Martin Layton one two punch was delivered squarely on Harpers jaw, and all the poll results show that. Martin maintained his parties status quo position in the polls, basically patching a badly leaking life raft. If an election is called now it will be to return a Minority Government either Liberal or Conservative.

The winners this week were the NDP and Jack Layton as the Toronto Star points out:

"New Democrats have reason to cheer today's poll results, with Graves saying: "Not since the salad days of the 1980s have the NDP been poised to exert such influence on the Canadian political scene." The NDP tops all other parties as the second choice, with 24 per cent of respondents saying they would move their vote to Layton's party."

The announcements yesterday of the First Provincial funding agreements for Day Care were between the provincial NDP governments of Manitoba and Sasktchewan and the Liberal Feds further cemented the Layton Martin accord.

The NDP bailed out Martin in a big way and stopped the Conservatives in their tracks.

While Martin made lots of money announcements the key is that the budget must get passed. Not getting the Atlantic Accord pulled out of the budget, is the fallback card for Martin.

Layton did the next best thing and took his first announcement about the Liberal NDP Budget to Halifax and announced that if the Accord was to be finalized then the new budget would have to pass. That meant Harpers Atlantic Conservatives would have to support the NDP Liberal budget. It was an excellent parry of the Conservatives whining.

And if the Conservatives are not going to look like the opportunist amatuers they are they may have to postpone their attempt to "end the Liberals misery" until the budget vote. And even then they can't count on every member of their party or the BQ will be in the house for that vote.

Suddenly next weeks rush to judgement by Harper looks more like it may become a case of the mouse that roared. As the Globe and Mail points out:

"Finally, Mr. Harper finds himself with little support in Quebec and actually running third in urban parts of Canada with populations of more than a million. Indeed, the New Democrats are the second choice of more Canadians than are the Tories."

The winners this week, the people of Canada, with an improved pro-people budget. Even Bono would be pleased.

And the polls show that Harpers drop coincides with a rise in support for the left, the NDP and Greens. Not the Tories. If Liberal votes went anywhere it was to the left.

Martin's wait-for-Gomery campaign appears to strike a chord with voters
With a report from Shawna Richer in Halifax
Friday, April 29, 2005 Globe and Mail

However, as the Liberals and Conservatives batter away at each other, many Canadians appear dissatisfied with both. The poll found that in addition to the 18 per cent of respondents who support the NDP, 10 per cent supported the Green Party, which has never elected an MP. And Liberal supporters are twice as likely to switch to the NDP as to the Conservatives, the poll found. In Quebec, the Bloc appears set to romp to a sweep of most of the province's 75 seats. That support is unusually firm: only 6 per cent of Bloc supporters said they could switch to the Liberals. "The Liberals have nothing to pick up. Nothing," Mr. Gregg said. "They are gone in the province of Quebec." Support for the other federalist parties in Quebec stands at 9 per cent for the Conservatives, 8 per cent for the NDP, and a surprising 12 per cent for the Greens. "None of the federalist parties are right now satisfactory options for federalist voters," Mr. Gregg said. The survey of 1,000 Canadians was conducted between April 24 and 27. It has a margin of error of 3.1 per cent 19 times out of 20.


Liberal: 30%

Conservative: 28%

NDP: 18%

Bloc: 14%

Green: 10%

3% of Canadians say the government is doing an 'excellent job'

24% say it is doing a 'very poor' job

9% of Quebeckers support the Tories; 12% back the Green Party

61% of Canadians are willing to wait until Gomery reports before voting

49% say their opinion of Paul Martin has worsened in the past year

Fri, 29 Apr 2005
CBC News
OTTAWA - Two new polls show the federal Conservative party has lost its lead in public opinion across Canada in the past week.

LIB 30 27
CON 28 25
NDP 18 11
BQ 14 11
GREEN 10 8

GPC: margin of error 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
Strategic Counsel: margin of error 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

The two national polls, by GPC Research and Strategic Counsel, each have a margin of error that puts the Liberals and Conservatives in a statistical tie. But they are a substantial turnaround from other recent polls, which have shown the Conservatives ahead of the Liberals by as much as seven percentage points. "As it stands now, it looks like there's still life in the Liberal party, which comes as a surprise for a number of people," Gail Haarsma, vice-president of research for GPC, told the Canadian Press. Her firm interviewed 1,215 voters by telephone between Monday and Wednesday of this week. Allen Gregg, chairman of Strategic Counsel, said his firm's polling, done for the Globe and Mail newspaper and the CTV network, indicated there is a ceiling to Conservative support. "For example, they are running third in cities over a million in population right now, at 18 per cent, behind the New Democrats," he told the Globe. Strategic Counsel polled 1,000 Canadians between Sunday and Wednesday. Both polls were taken after Prime Minister Paul Martin's television address last week, in which he said an election should not be held until Justice John Gomery has made his report on the federal sponsorship scandal.

And a third poll, taken just in Quebec, indicates support for separatism may not be as high as another survey showed earlier this week. The poll, released this week by the CROP polling firm, found only 47 per cent of Quebecers favoured sovereignty, compared with the 54 per cent support a Léger Marketing poll reported on Wednesday. The two polls had comparable sample sizes of about 1,000 people, and both were accurate within three percentage points, 19 times out of 20.



APRIL 30,2005

OTTAWA—The political alliance between federal Liberals and New Democrats is helping push Prime Minister Paul Martin's government onto the comeback trail, according to a new Toronto Star poll.

The poll, by EKOS Research Associates, was the first to be conducted after Martin made his deal with NDP Leader Jack Layton to help save the government. It shows the Liberals rebounding and back ahead of the Conservatives nationally after a dramatic plunge earlier this month.

Martin's Liberals now stand at 32.5 per cent among decided voters, compared to 30.5 per cent for the Tories and 19 per cent for the NDP. Just three weeks ago, the Liberals bottomed out at 25 per cent while Conservatives were rising with 36 per cent support nationally.

In Ontario, the Liberals have climbed back to 39 per cent while the Tories are at 33; a near complete reversal of results a couple of weeks ago and more in keeping with the province's Liberal-friendly tradition. With 106 seats, Ontario will be the main battleground in the election.

In fact, overall, it seems that most of the dramatic trends witnessed at the beginning of this month have now reversed, the Star-La Presse poll shows, and Martin's new pact with Layton could be proving to be a helpful factor in the Liberal bounceback. On Tuesday night, Martin and Layton announced an agreement that forces the Liberals to rewrite the budget in return for NDP support in securing its passage.

When EKOS asked respondents which federal political alliance made them least comfortable, a full 59 per cent declared unease with a Conservative-Bloc Québécois alliance, compared to 33 per cent who said a Liberal-NDP pact.

Conservative Leader Stephen Harper has declared that he wants to put the government "out of its misery" by voting with the Bloc to defeat the Liberals, even with the NDP siding with Martin.

Martin and Layton have been saying for several days that Harper is now in bed with the separatists in an attempt to force an early election and prevent major progressive programs such as daycare and public housing from going ahead.

Today's poll shows that Martin and Layton's efforts may be having some effect. EKOS found that public anger is abating over the dramatic allegations of kickbacks and tax-dollar abuse revealed earlier this month at Justice John Gomery's inquiry into the sponsorship scandal.

Harper's similar fanning-out efforts this week, on the other hand, seem not to be helping. Indeed, EKOS found that 50 per cent of Canadians "just can't see" the Conservative leader being elected as prime minister. Nor are Harper's chances improved when people see him as an ally of the Bloc.

"While Stephen Harper may see an NDP-(Liberal) alliance as unholy, his reliance on the BQ to dislodge the Liberals may well constitute the Conservatives' most glaring exposed flank," EKOS president Frank Graves says.

"Paul Martin and Jack Layton are regarded as a far less frightening political couple; rather, it is Stephen Harper and Gilles Duceppe who are seen as disturbing and beyond odd bedfellows."

But the Liberals aren't out of the woods. Buried among generally positive news for the Liberals are these results:

A majority of Canadians, 60 per cent, feel it's time for a new government in Ottawa. Still, that's roughly the same number who thought so a year ago, too.

Anger over the sponsorship issue is still running higher than anger over any early election call. While 52 per cent of Canadians said they would be inclined to punish a party at the ballot box over the sponsorship issue, only 35 per cent said they would hold an early election against any party when making their voting choice.

"..(Stephen Harper's) reliance on the BQ to dislodge the Liberals may well constitute the Conservatives' most glaring exposed flank."

Frank Graves, EKOS president

Martin is seen more as part of the problem than as part of the solution. While 32 per cent said he had no part in the sponsorship scandal and deserves credit for calling the inquiry, almost twice that number — 62 per cent — agreed he should be accountable because he was a key player in the government that ushered in the program.

In Quebec, things are not so rosy for Martin. The Bloc Québécois stands at 49 per cent, the Liberals, 21, NDP, 14, and Conservatives, 11.

But on a countrywide basis, Martin seems to be holding his own, relative to Harper. Overall, 36 per cent of respondents identified Martin as the best leader for the country as a whole, compared to 28 per cent who saw Harper through that lens.

When respondents were asked which leader was best for the interests of particular provinces, Martin was seen as best for Ontario, B.C. and the Atlantic, while Harper scored highest in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

The poll was conducted this week, from Tuesday to Thursday, among 1,212 Canadians of voting age (18) or older. The results are deemed valid to within 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error increases when results are subdivided by region.

Still, this new EKOS poll shows that a week can indeed be a lifetime in politics and especially a week in which political leaders have been engaged in such frenetic activity. Martin, Harper and Layton inundated Ontario with visits this week, while the Liberal-NDP deal was being negotiated and Conservatives were weighing the public appetite for an election.

The poll shows more Canadians would like to see a majority government than a minority government, a reversal of attitudes seen in February 2004. But is also finds a public resigned to a minority, with 69 per cent predicting that as the likely outcome of the next election.

Friday, April 29, 2005

Citizen Klein

Klein sparks controversy with energy bill comments
Global Calgary

Electricity operators 'not too happy' with Klein
Don't sign long-term, premier says
Calgary Herald, April 28, 2005
When is the Premier not speaking as Premier? When he is quoted as the Premier after being asked a question as the Premier about Electrical De-Regulation. Flip Flop Ralph suddenly was speaking as Citizen Ralph, as Consumer Ralph, musing out loud, misquoted by the media.

He was caught in a lie again, saying one thing and then after firmly removing his foot from his mouth and putting his brain in gear he realized what he had said. Or perhaps he just heard himself on the news. And all of a sudden his sage advice as Fureher to his Volk, is suddenly just 'a personal opinion of a consumer' like you and me.

What started this whole thing was the release Tuesday of the Utilities Board Report by the NDP a report the Government still refuses to release to the public.
The report damns electrical deregulation as a failure for consumers, the Volk of Alberta and a win for utility companies, surprize surprize.

The report rejects all of the electricity pricing options proposed by the Department of Energy. The list of government proposals “does not provide consumers with a fair choice” (p. 6), and is being driven by retailers who are “self-serving and disingenuous” (p. 6). The report lambasts the Department of Energy by stating: “Again, we note with great concern that consumer protection does not seem to be a criterion under the current consideration of the Department in determining its retail policy” (p. 12).

When questioned about the report Klein went on the defensive and made his comments as Premier saying that he would consider leaving regulation of the market, such as it is, price in place beyond this summer. Then his caucus got to him slapped him upside the head and said; "what are you thinking?".

On Tuesday, Klein said the regulated rate option – which is set by the Energy and Utilities Board and is cheaper than the contract rate – will likely be extended when it expires in July 2006. Energy Minister Greg Melchin said Wednesday that no decision had been made about what will happen with the regulated rate, but that they will know by the end of June.NDP Leader Brian Mason said the premier is giving conflicting messages."The premier and his [former] energy minister [Murray Smith] encouraged people to go into long-term electricity contracts as a way to avoid volatility and high prices in the electricity market," Mason said. "So now these people who've taken the premier's advice and are locked in to five-year contracts at the highest rates in the province's history, they're being told by the premier they made a bad deal."That kind of arrogance just takes your breath away." CBC News

The written report here does not do justice to the press conference recording of our Ralph having a hissy fit literally screaming at reporters that he was miss quoted. The froth and spittle actually managed to come through the speakers on the radio.

Royal Ralph's rant made Howard Deans performance look mild.

Wanna piss off King Klein? Raise the issue of Electrical De-Regulation and it being a failure and he literally has a spaz attack and goes ballistic. He did that after the first year of de-regulation when he was questioned in a rate TV interview where he began berating the reporter, turning red and blowing his cool on TV. Any mention of the failure of this pet project of privatization and Klein flips out. It's one of his few achilles heels.

Klein knows that Energy De-Regulation is a failure, and has no where to go since he painted himself into a corner defending it on behalf of his good friend; Steve West (who came up with the idea) and the folks at Transalta (who pushed for it so they could sell electricity into the US market).

Oh yeah former Tory Cabinet Minister Lou Hyndman is a director at Transalta. And current candidate for Ralphs job, Jim Dinning was on the TransAlta Board till this January. They pushed for the deregulation of electricity, in order to facilitate TransAltas sole ability to market blended electricity across Canada and into the the USA. TransAlta is the fourth largest private electrical supplier in North America. It's a Contiental player and acts like one at the expense of the Volk of Alberta.

Ah nothing like Tory politics to leave the Volk of Alberta at the mercy of predatory monopoly corportations.

Better that of course than the state controling the monopoly.

Rip-off rates and snake-oil salesmen
Electricity Hucksters backed by government; consumers pay up to 25% more

Here is another example of not letting the facts get in the way of the privatization ideology of the Alberta Reich.

Like the fact that electrical deregulation has increased costs to consumers both directly in electrical costs and indirectly by increased gas prices. The government de-regulated gas powered electrical utilities as gas prices were skyrocketing, this from a government that has only one resource gas and oil, another Tory duh'oh, that.

Then there is the fact de-regulation has increased the inflation rate in the province, which indicates prices increasing NOT decreasing as promised.

Alberta now has the highest utility costs in Canada.

While little old Medicine Hat the city in the South of the province has the lowest utility rates in Canada. Hmmm hows that, oh yeah they own their own utilities.

Now TransAlta who was the mover and shaker behind the de-regulation putsch is backing off.

Race to electrical deregulation in N.A. now in retreat, says TransAlta boss
EDMONTON (CP) - The race to deregulate electricity in North America has stalled, leaving power producers in an investment limbo, says the president of TransAlta Corp., one of the country's biggest privately owned electricity generators. Stephen Snyder told TransAlta's annual meeting Friday that the political situation is one reason why the utility is operating plants in Mexico where it has locked in 25-year, government-backed power contracts. "In many North American provinces and states the race to deregulation . . . has turned into a retreat," said Snyder, who is also CEO of the Calgary-based utility. "As a result it's not clear if new plants will operate under regulation, deregulation or partially regulated rules.

Funny that, its enough to make one Ralph.

Charles Frank
Calgary Herald
Saturday, April 30, 2005

: Backers cringe when premier talks tough subscriber only content

It's always best to take many of Premier Ralph Klein's comments with a grain of salt.

He has, after all, been known to "reconstruct" those public utterances that later prove impolitic or in need of "clarification" because they do not jibe with either government policy or the mood of the electorate.

And this week's verbal two-step (one step forward, one back) on electricity contracts, which saw the premier first warn Albertans about signing long-term contracts and then do his best to rescind that political faux pas, is a classic example of a process we have all come to recognize.

That having been said, no amount of reconstruction, clarification or backtracking will fix the damage done to the government's electricity deregulation initiative -- and in passing the much vaunted Alberta Advantage -- by the premier's jarring comments this week.

By intimating that (a) the regulated rate for small businesses and residential homeowners is likely to be extended beyond 2006 -- perhaps indefinitely, and (b) that it is buyer beware for consumers who succumb to the long-term sales pitches of electricity retailers operating in the province, he has managed to kick the already wobbly legs out from under the province's electricity deregulation initiative.

That, in turn, raises the question of whether a province where you can't be sure if your electricity costs are going to be manageable -- or predictable -- is a welcoming place for people to set up businesses, not to mention residences.

I expect that thudding noise you heard resonating through the streets of Calgary following publication of the premier's declarations was that of sales people at companies like Direct Energy, Enmax or Alberta Energy Savings, pounding their heads against their respective office walls in disbelief.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Scandal in the Alberta Stock Exchange

Updated April 28, 2005

Business community not worried about Alberta Securities controversy: Klein

Welcome to the Alberta Reich. Once again, Herr Klein has allowed the fox to run the hen house. In doing so the all too predictable has happened.

Instead of admitting that provincial regulation (or non regulation ) of the Alberta stock exchange is a FAILURE and a SCANDAL of insider trading proportions. The Alberta Reichstadt circles the wagons in defense of its own, while Ralph goes golfing.

Klein still confident of the ASC
EDMONTON - Premier Ralph Klein says he does not believe investors are worried about the performance of Alberta's securities watchdog despite its recent controversies.

The Finance Minister at first dismisses media reports on abuses and questionable practices inside the ASC. Now she is supposedly acting on them. But the ASC see's itself as being above government oversight, ah the conundrum of self regulation comes home to roost with the Tories.

Alta securities commission says auditor general can't see enforcement files
Thursday, April 28, 2005
EDMONTON (CP) - The Alberta auditor general's investigation into the Alberta Securities Commission has hit a snag. Commission officials say they failed to reach an agreement with Fred Dunn about the parameters of his probe and that if they can't find common ground, they will refuse him access to their files. ASC spokesman Rod McLeod said he's not sure where the two sides go now. "We told Mr. Dunn that his proposed scope of audit may require the ASC to breach statutes and legal obligations placed upon us by the Securities Act (and) that we cannot and will not do," McLeod told reporters in Calgary. He said they are waiting for a written response from Dunn. "If we can live with the (parameters), we'll proceed. If we cannot, we'll have no alternative but to deny Mr. Dunn access to documents we feel statutorily obligated to protect."

Finance Minister Shirley McClellan tried to referee the two provincial bodies Thursday, saying she is confident both sides can work it out and the probe will go ahead. "I have every confidence that the auditor general and the securities commission and their legal people will interpret the appropriate sections and ensure that within the bounds of the legislation that the auditor general will receive all the information that's pertinent to his investigation," she told the legislature. She pointed out that both bodies were creatures of the Alberta legislature and said she was confident they will sort out who has authority to do what.

ASC Restrictions Ruin Any Chance of Proper Investigation, Taft

Edmonton – Alberta Liberal Leader Kevin Taft is calling the Alberta Securities Commission’s efforts to restrict the Auditor General’s investigation of the commission proof positive that the review will fall well short of getting to the bottom of recent allegations.

ASC sets restrictions on audit information


Friday, April 29, 2005 Page B10 Globe and Mail

The Alberta Securities Commission has placed restrictions on the information the Alberta Auditor-General can look at in an audit of the regulator. The ASC, which is dealing with a controversy over questionable enforcement practices, said the Alberta Securities Acts deems all information connected to enforcement matters to be confidential. The Auditor-General is planning to release a report on its audit in July and this week outlined specific things it wanted to look at, including procedures the ASC uses to ensure that "conclusions or decisions are adequately documented." The ASC restrictions "ruin any chance of proper investigation," said Kevin Taft, leader of Alberta's Opposition Liberals.

Instead of admitting there is a serious if not criminal situation inside the ASC the Finance Minister calls on the workers to blow the whistle on their bosses. And, again predictably, when they do they get fired by their ASC bosses in order to cover up their excesses and abuses. Catch 22.

De-Regulation, self regulation, all the so called free market solutions to the crisis of the Capitalist state are applied here in Alberta with Republican-lite glee. As a result of the Wild West atmosphere of the oil boom without end, the serious flaws in the de/un regulated market are swept up under the carpet of oh look there’s another gusher.

How many failures of privatization and deregulation must occur before the Alberta Volk wake up and smell the coffee. Let me count the ways……Ralph’s offer of being hung, drawn and quartered still stands…..when will we take him up on it…..

The scandals in Alberta, the democratic deficit, the pocketing of taxpayers money for contract work that wasn’t tendered nor ever done, by a Tory insider, the failure of electrical deregulation, the current ASC scandal, every problem in Ottawa is once again mirrored in Alberta.

This is what happens when political parties are in power too long and without opposition that can defeat them. Such was the case after eight years of Mulroney’s Conservatives in Ottawa and after ten years of the Chrétien Liberals in power.

In Alberta the Party of Calgary has been in power for 33 years, and Ralph has been in power for 11 of those. Just think of all the skeletons in the Legislature that they have accumulated.

Below are the current updates, as they say watch this space as more of the facts behind this MAJOR STOCK EXCHANGE SCANDAL are revealed.

Following the updates are the April 1 and March 23 stories that exposed the scandal in the ASC. See the comments section where I have added the news updates between April 1 and April 23 when the ASC bosses began their campaign of intimidation of the staff.

Click here for Google news links to all the stories on the ASC. This just gets better and better, and the silence from the Government or at least Ralph is deafening. This is the Ad scam of Alberta.


The Alberta Government began investigating the ASC because of pressure from the media and the financial industry.

The audit they have called for has resulted in exposing ASC staff to arbitrary dismissal by their ASC bosses for being Whistle Blowers in the ASC...

According to the provincial Liberals; The Witch Hunt is On.

Internal Audit Committee an Extension of PC Party into Government

Kevin Taft, leader of the opposition Liberals, said an out-of-province investigator is needed to clear up the "sorry mess." "We basically have a clubby situation in which Tories are investigating Tories . . . and lo-and-behold the real picture never emerges," Mr. Taft said. "There is too much smoke for there not to be some serious fire burning there." Globe and Mail April 26 2005

Alberta Securities Commission staff implore finance minister to step in

Canadian Press

Thursday, April 28, 2005

EDMONTON (CP) - Alberta Finance Minister Shirley McClellan has been implored by staff at the Alberta Securities Commission to intervene in a controversy that has dogged the regulator for months.

In a two-page letter to the minister dated Monday, 35 current commission employees accuse two senior officials of "bullying and intimidating behaviour." The result, they say, is that the work of the ASC, Canada's second-largest market regulator, is suffering and staff are afraid to co-operate with three investigations currently underway.

The employees complain specifically about the actions of chairman Stephen Sibold, whose contract expires next week, and executive director David Linder. Neither man was available for comment.

Sibold and Linder have denied earlier allegations of misconduct at the ASC, including interference in investigations of Alberta Securities Act violations.

The letter from employees is the latest development in an ongoing controversy that surfaced earlier this year surrounding the commission.

Sibold previously referred to anonymous complainants as "depraved" and "cowardly" and threatened legal action against them. He has also threatened to sue newspapers that reported the allegations.

In the legislature, McClellan had urged employees to come forward with any evidence and assured them there would be no reprisals.

Last week senior ASC administrator Grahame Newton was fired for allegedly failing to co-operate with a KPMG forensic audit of commission computers.

The employees' letter says the firing has spawned greater fears among the 100-member staff and added to the "high stress levels, extreme distrust and paranoia" of recent months.

In addition to the KPMG investigation, the commission has hired consultants to address "human resources problems" discovered in an earlier probe by Calgary lawyer Perry Mack.

Finance Minister pulls a Duh oh!

McClellan says ASC needs to keep her informed

Apr 26 2005
CBC News EDMONTON Finance Minister Shirley McClellan says someone at the Alberta Securities Commission should have informed her that a senior administrator was going to be fired. McClellan says she needs to know what's going on at the commission because she is the person answering questions about its operations.

A big, only now, days later does the Minister demand that the ASC answer to her. A bit of a back hand slap, for their arbitrary firing of a whistle blower. Hmm arbitrary actions is one of the things the ASC insiders are accused of doing........

ASC administrative head dismissed

CBC News

CALGARY The Alberta Securities Commission's director of administrative services has been fired. Grahame Newton said he was informed of his dismissal in a letter couriered to his home Thursday night, but that the reasons cited are without foundation. He wouldn't elaborate, but said he believes the real reason he was let go is that he was one of the people who spoke out about problems at the commission.

Alberta Liberals attack ASC computer investigation
Globe and Mail
Friday, April 22, 2005
A forensic computer probe at the Alberta Securities Commission is producing a "fearful and intimidating climate," said Alberta's Liberal Opposition Leader Kevin Taft in the legislature's question period yesterday. Finance Minister Shirley McClellan said Mr. Taft had "a great deal of ignorance" about how the computer probe is being conducted. The ASC said this week that it hired KPMG to assess the security of its computer systems, particularly e-mail. Ms. McClellan said the probe was in no way trying to expose ASC employees who provided anonymous allegations of lax enforcement practices at the commission for in an investigation earlier this year. Those allegation were found to be untrue.

Globe and Mail
Saturday, April 23, 2005
Controversy at the Alberta Securities Commission intensified yesterday with the official announcement that one senior employee at the regulator has been fired. The part-time commissioners who oversee the ASC said in a press release that Grahame Newton, the commission's director of administrative services, was terminated for cause because he did not co-operate with an audit of the ASC's computer systems and admitted to "the interception of several private e-mail communications among ASC staff." A lawyer for Mr. Newton said there were no grounds to terminate for cause, adding that Mr. Newton co-operated fully with the computer audit. The ASC has been rocked by anonymous allegations of lax enforcement and unprofessional behaviour. The computer audit was started as part of an investigation into those allegations, most of which have been declared unfounded by the part-time commissioners.

Alberta Securities Commission says it had just cause to fire employee

April 23, 2005

Investor advocate Diane Urquhart said Friday that the firing of Newton in the midst of the turmoil at the securities commission will not go over well with the investing public. "If in fact someone has had a remedial termination because of an allegation of providing information . . . it's unacceptable and the investing public should be very concerned," she said. Urquhart was skeptical of the timing of the KPMG audit. "It's entirely reasonable for a forensic audit to occur . . . but right in the middle of a human-resources fiasco makes no sense from a management point of view. It's oil on a fire." Newton was fired the same day Alberta Finance Minister Shirley McClellan told the legislature there was no witch hunt underway.

APRIL 1, 2005

The 'top brass' are covering their ass in fine old Troy tradition, must be Tories they deny like Klein. The Alberta Securities Commission proves the need for ONE NATIONAL REGULATOR, like the SEC in the US. Here we have five, count 'em five stock markets across Canada no uniform rules, and no single body responsible for those exchanges.

"Unlike the U.S. and its powerful SEC, there is no national regulator in Canada. It's an international anomaly that dates to the British North America Act of 1867, which divvied up government responsibilities and decreed property a provincial matter. Until the late 1990s, the stock market followed a similar pattern: there were five separate exchanges in Canada. They've consolidated somewhat, but the regulators who oversee the markets haven't managed to move in tandem. Instead, they've been bogged down by an ages-old Canadian political game, that tug of war for power between Ottawa and the provinces." Canada needs a securities watchdog with teeth

The Alberta exchange has had scandals before,Bre-X being the most infamous, fraudulent penny stocks, insider trading, in fact in the 1980's and '90's the Alberta and the Vancouver Stock exchanges were known as the bad boys of the marketplace, promoting boiler room stock operations which were documented in the Financial Post, which is now part of the National Post.

The Infamous Vancouver Stock Exchange

In the novel, the company established by Granger McAdam to exploit his diamond find in Vietnam is listed on the Vancouver Stock Exchange (VSE) which specialised in the financing of junior mining companies all over the world. However it was also one of the most controversial stock exchanges in the world and had been described as the Sodom and Gommorah of modern day financial markets. Its reputation makes Cassie Stewart's task of raising money to finance a diamond mine more difficult.

"Vancouver has all sorts of dodgy companies on the Exchange, cowboys, fly-by-nights."

"This market's not like London. It's pretty wild, with all sorts of unscrupulous operators, lots of manipulation."

Despite her confidence, Cassie discovers that the Vancouver Stock Exchange's notoriety is not exaggerated! Nevertheless the risks she runs in tangling with the sharks in Vancouver are as nothing compared with those that await Eva when she returns to Vietnam ...

N.B. In reality on November 29th, 1999 the Vancouver and Alberta stock exchanges merged to form the Canadian Venture Exchange (CDNX). The reputation of the Alberta Stock Exchange had been greatly damaged by the BRE-X scandal. It is to be hoped that the CDNX will enjoy a much better reputation than its two predecessors!"

With the Klein revolution of getting government out of the business of regulation or oversight, what do you expect in an oil rich speculative market place but speculation. Welcome to the wild west, where anything goes, investor beware you will get screwed and don't go to the sheriff cause he's on the take.


ASC issues raised year ago

Letter to government: Former senior enforcement officer outlined concerns

Theresa Tedesco, Chief Business Correspondent

Financial Post
Friday, April 01, 2005

The Alberta government was warned about "significant ethical shortcomings" in the executive offices at the Alberta Securities Commission last year, according to a confidential letter obtained by the Financial Post.

The four-page missive delivered in January, 2004, to Greg Melchin, Alberta's former revenue minister, claimed there was a "two-tier regulatory regime" with one set of rules for "normal" people and another for the "powerful." The letter also alleged senior executives engaged in favouritism among staff, exchanged "erotic" e-mails, and condoned an "open display of sex toys" in the regulator's offices.

The letter, written on Jan. 9, 2004, by Wayne Alford, a former ASC enforcement director, lists four incidents of what he described as "significant ethical failing," and warned that "should they become public knowledge, would certainly bring the administration of Alberta's securities laws into disrepute if not open ridicule."

Mr. Alford, who resigned from the securities watchdog in December, 2003, urged Mr. Melchin to "intercede" and "address the abuses at the ASC."

In one case, Mr. Alford claimed Mr. Sibold decided whether the commission would pursue an enforcement action against a Calgary lawyer, who was also a former law partner of Mr. Sibold, in connection with an insider trading case. In the end, according to Mr. Alford, enforcement staff "received instruction from Sibold and Linder not to pursue this case even though the case was strong and in the opinion of staff, completely sustainable."

Mr. Sibold is also alleged to have become involved in a case involving another Calgary lawyer who had been investigated for providing misleading information to the Toronto Stock Exchange. The unnamed lawyer was also a partner at Mr. Sibold's former law firm in Calgary. Mr. Alford wrote that Messrs. Sibold and Linder instructed enforcement staff to "discontinue enforcement action" against the individual. Instead, the ASC issued a public notice that provided guidelines for lawyers about their obligations when dealing with regulators.

"The enforcement action was terminated notwithstanding staff's opinion that the case was strong and completely sustainable," Mr. Alford wrote.

In the third example, Mr. Alford claimed Mr. Sibold "objected strenuously to staff" who commenced an enforcement action against an unnamed, prominent Canadian businessman for alleged insider trading. After reviewing the file, Mr. Sibold's view, according to the letter, was that "there was no case" against the businessman, and he ordered his staff to "seek a quick and very insignificant settlement to the file." However, ASC enforcement lawyers involved in the case objected in writing to Mr. Sibold. In any event, the businessman subsequently "admitted to all of staff's allegations relating to insider trading."


Alberta regulator lashes out at 'depraved' accusers
Globe and Mail Thursday, March 24, 2005

CALGARY -- Stephen Sibold, the embattled chairman of the Alberta Securities Commission, denied allegations of misconduct yesterday, calling his accusers "depraved."

"I challenge these cowardly and depraved individuals who are hiding behind anonymity to come forward, identify themselves and present what they take to be evidence supporting their baseless and false allegations," Mr. Sibold said during a brief press conference held at the ASC offices in Calgary.

He answered no questions about the allegations, on the advice of his lawyer.

In an e-mail to commission staff yesterday morning, Mr. Sibold called the allegations "malicious and vicious," ending the four-paragraph missive by saying he wanted to "prosecute these depraved individuals."

Mr. Sibold announced that he was serving a defamation notice to the National Post and the reporter who authored two stories that appeared in the paper yesterday.

The articles, citing unnamed sources, described the commission as dysfunctional, specifically saying that the regulator's top executives interfered in enforcement cases.

Mr. Sibold, whose term as chairman ends in May, and David Linder, the commission's executive director, were identified by the unnamed sources at the commission, according to the articles.

The accusations have thrown one of Canada's largest securities regulators -- the overseer of the country's oil and gas business -- into disarray.

Mr. Sibold forbade his communications staff to talk about the issue to reporters.

Meanwhile, the Alberta government is continuing its search for a new chairman, but a spokeswoman for the Finance Minister said only one round of interviews has been completed.

Mr. Sibold's five-year term ends in May.

All this is occurring as the province awaits the results of an investigation it requested in January over the ASC's regulatory practices.

The vigour with which the commission has pursued enforcement cases is at the heart of the allegations against Mr. Sibold and Mr. Linder, several securities lawyers said. Some believe the commission hasn't been tough enough.

Mr. Linder, who has been executive director since late 1997, said in a statement that the allegations had "no merit," adding that the commission during his tenure has operated under "the very highest standards of propriety, professionalism, fairness, respect and integrity."

The province's investigation into the allegations began in January when Alberta Finance Minister Shirley McClellan asked the ASC's nine part-time commissioners to look into suggestions of wrongdoing.

Calgary lawyer Perry Mack was hired to interview the complainants, whose accusations were submitted to the part-time commissioners on Feb. 16. On Monday, a report with Mr. Sibold and Mr. Linder's responses to the complaints was submitted.

"There's nothing I can tell you," said Mr. Mack when contacted yesterday.

The reports will likely be part of a package and will be handed to Ms. McClellan soon, but not this week, said Alan Hunter, a partner at Code Hunter LLP in Calgary who is representing the nine commissioners.

Meanwhile, players in Alberta's capital markets await a decision on the Blue Range Resource Corp. scandal, a much-anticipated ruling that has been long delayed and is expected at the end of April. (The ASC alleges that Blue Range executives misled investors over the company's oil and gas production and reserves.)

Mr. Sibold was appointed chairman of the commission in May, 2000, for a five-year term. It was announced last October that his tenure would not be extended.

This week, the Alberta cabinet passed an order-in-council that makes this May the official end of his term.

A previous order-in-council had the end of his term as March 31, even though his contract with the commission had the term's end as May.

Tracy Balash, the spokeswoman for the Finance Minister, said the order was "just correcting an administrative error."

She said she believed that no one had noticed the inconsistency between the original order and the contract until recently.

Asked why the Alberta cabinet would make the order given the accusations against Mr. Sibold, Ms. Balash said: "You can't make decisions on a human resource matter when you're dealing with allegations that haven't been proven."

Mr. Sibold, in his e-mail to the commission staff of about 120, said he was "gratified" that the government "has clarified my term of office."

His last day is May 7.

Securities watchdog turmoil
Alberta commission facing review, lawyer denies claims
Theresa Tedesco
National Post
Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Senior officials at the Alberta Securities Commission interfered with enforcement cases, engaged in favouritism and condoned lewd conduct among staff, according to allegations contained in a confidential report prepared for the regulator's commissioners.

The National Post has learned that an unprecedented review into the conduct of the provincial watchdog's executive ranks, including Stephen Sibold, outgoing chair of the ASC, and David Linder, executive director, revealed a "dysfunctional" agency with questionable management practices, lax governance and a "toxic" atmosphere that contributed to staff departures in recent years.

According to sources, a detailed report prepared by prominent Calgary lawyer Perry Mack for the ASC's board of commissioners is based on claims made by a group of about six whistleblowers and supported in subsequent interviews by about 30 former and current employees. Mr. Mack, who was hired by the ASC's 12-member board of commissioners in January, tabled his findings in mid-February.

The extraordinary probe was ordered by Shirley McClellan, Alberta's Deputy Premier and Finance Minister, after she was advised about "allegations" into the conduct of the ASC's chair and executive director two months ago. According to a one-page letter sent to the ASC's board of commissioners on Jan. 12, Ms. McClellan stated "the allegations appear to be sufficiently serious to justify further investigation." The Finance Minister, who is responsible for the ASC, told the board to report back to her on "what actions the commission intends to take with respect to these complaints."

Among the complaints current and former staff reported to Mr. Mack, sources say, are allegations that executive managers obstructed the work of enforcement staff by directly influencing whether the regulator would pursue cases against certain companies and individuals.

"Every week we had to justify our cases. It was routine that staff was asked to drop cases," said a source familiar with the regulator who asked not to be named for fear of reprisal. "It was made clear that certain people and companies were not to be troubled and were being protected from regulatory activity."

Messrs. Sibold and Linder did not respond to repeated calls or e-mails. However, Alan Hunter, a lawyer representing the ASC's nine part-time commissioners, said yesterday that "the matters are internal to the commission and are highly confidential."

In response to questions sent to Messrs. Sibold and Linder by the National Post, Mr. Hunter said, "Many of your allegations are not accurate."

The allegations raise troubling questions about the credibility of one of Canada's largest securities regulators. The ASC is responsible for governing all publicly traded companies in Alberta, including some of the largest oil and gas companies in Canada. The provincial regulator administers Alberta's securities act, rules and regulations and it also oversees the TSX Venture Exchange.

Sources told the Post that most of the ASC's senior management have revolted against the chair and his lieutenant over what they claim to be an oppressive work environment that has fostered deep tensions and resentment among the rank-and-file.

Since Mr. Mack tabled his report to the ASC board of commissioners almost six weeks ago, sources say a rift has ensued and that the most senior executives are now barely communicating with the rest of the staff.

"The atmosphere has become such that we cannot carry out our business," said a source familiar with the regulator who asked not to be named. Another official described the atmosphere as "untenable" and "poisonous," saying that "there isn't much work getting done these days. People are hunkered down."

According to sources familiar with the complaints, Messrs. Sibold and Linder are said to have fostered a "cowboy mentality" that encouraged favouritism, especially among female members. "The chair acts like a horny teenager," said a source who asked not to be named.

At the same time, sources say senior lawyers, accountants and investigators at the ASC chafed at what they described as inappropriate sexual behaviour in the fourth-floor executive suites, including the frequent circulation of lascivious e-mails on the regulator's computer system and an inflatable sex doll prominently displayed in the offices.

"Skill and intrinsic ability didn't have much to do with how you were evaluated in performance appraisals and remunerated," said a source who filed a complaint with Mr. Mack. "The route to the top was to flatter the chair, wear low-cut blouses and shake what you've got."

Mr. Mack, a well-regarded corporate lawyer, declined to comment for this article, saying, "everything I do or don't do is confidential."

Messrs. Sibold and Linder are said to have responded to the allegations in Mr. Mack's report. The board of commissioners has been meeting this week to decide its next course of action. The group is also required to report back to the Finance Minister.

In the meantime, many of the ASC's 119 employees fear recriminations in the wake of the unprecedented investigation and ensuing scandal. Members of the staff are particularly worried that Messrs. Sibold and Linder are currently conducting performance reviews of all employees, which will determine their salaries and bonuses for fiscal 2005, beginning on April 1.

"Generally, people are feeling harassed," said an insider who asked not to be named. "I think a number of people expect life to become unpleasant."

Beleaguered commission employees blame the board of commissioners for failing to address their concerns, especially because the human resources committee of the board receives all exit interviews of senior managers who quit. Sources say those interviews were littered with serious complaints against the ASC's executive management. "If there had been any kind of oversight, these things wouldn't be happening," said a disgruntled official.

Meanwhile, Finance Ministry officials are currently assessing candidates to replace Mr. Sibold. Last October, the provincial government announced it would not reappoint Mr. Sibold to a second five-year term. He was expected to leave the ASC at the end of March, however, Mr. Sibold's employment contract entitled him to stay on until May 7 and an order-in-council was signed yesterday to accommodate an extension. (His two-year term as chair of the Canadian Securities Administrators ends next week.)

Mr. Linder continues to function as the commission's chief administrative officer, a post he has held since 1997. Unlike Mr. Sibold, he does not sit on the board of commissioners.

© National Post 2005

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Mr. Harper Friend of the Working Man

Opposition Leader Stephen Harper denounced the Liberal-NDP agreement as "death-bed conversions and deals with the devil." And he told a business group in Amherstburg, Ont., that he would ask his Conservative party caucus "to put this government out of its misery at the earliest possible opportunity.""An NDP budget gives us no reason to support Liberal corruption," Harper told reporters earlier in Ridgetown, during a stop while he campaigned in southwestern Ontario. "This government is behaving in a completely irresponsible manner with the taxpayers' money. We're talking about a secret deal worth almost $5 billion to stay in power." CBC April 27, 2005

To hear Conservative Leader Stephen Harper, the former mouthpiece of the employers and bosses lobby, the National Citizens Coalition (folks who promote the idea of keeping Canada union free), speak of the "NDP betraying workers" in their deal 'with the devil' to support the Liberals budget is well the kettle calling the pot black if we continue on with the cliches.

In his speech to a partisan crowd of Sotuhern Ontario Business people the word worker came off this free market capitalists lips so many times he was literaly turning pink.

Hail Comrade Harper friend of the working man.

He is so concerned that the NDP bought a pig in the poke, with no immediate benefits for Canadian workers. What benefits might those be? Well the billion dollar tax cut to Canada's big corporations. Yep that puts money in the working families cuts for the rich.

And of course Harpers spin was that the NDP deal was taking more money from taxpayers pockets, but in reality it was taking the money from the proposed Conservative corporate tax break and putting it in the pockets of Canadians.

What Layton and the NDP did for working folks in Canada is eliminate the Corporate Tax give away, which is what the Liberals put in the budget for Mr. Harpers support. And the howling of the Corporate hyenas in Canada was as loud as it was predictable.

The NDP got increases in existing social program spending and immediate implementation on these, in otherwords instead of the Liberal budget which promises these increases over a five year period, these new improved increases will become implemented ASAP. A big win that for the average taxpayer in Canada.

And the NDP added a new program that protects workers from having their pension funds ripped off when a business declares bankruptcy. This was a motion supported by the Opposition parties but not implemented by the Liberal Government. Its a whole new program, and an important one in the era of the looting of workers pensions by companies who declare bankruptcy only to reappear refinanced a few months later.

What the Conservatives and BQ who both denounced the deal are correct in pointing out was that the NDP failed to make a major overhaul of EI a priority in their deal.

"We have proposed very concrete changes and they were defeated by the Conservatives and the Liberals. In this budget there is nothing with respect to the fiscal imbalance. There is nothing with respect to employment insurance, and there is nothing in terms of a good plan for Kyoto," says BQ leader Gilles Duccepe. CBC April 27, 2005

OPPS, and a big OPPS that.

Layton is so fixated on Kyoto, that he missed EI' reform. That would have been as HISTORIC a change as has happened with NDP backed Liberal Minority governments in the past which got us Medicare, Old Age Security, CPP and of course EI. And it would have then been a challenge to the BQ who have lobbied on this issue as much as they have on Gomery. The BQ and the Conservatives both lobbied with the NDP for EI changes, but no party lobbied more for this than the BQ.

The NDP's pathological fear of an alliance with the BQ is the unfortunate undoing of their plan. The problem is that the NDP MPS see themselves as 'parlimentary federalists',in otherwords Trudeauites, rather than as social democrats who would reform federalism to include a soverign Quebec. Despite the party policy saying exactly that, they continue to believe they can be a Pan Canadian Social Democratic party or a Federalist Social Democratic Alternative to the BQ. Fat chance.

As the polls show the BQ is stongly supported in Quebec with the NDP and Conservatives neck and neck but stil way behind the Liberals. And the latest fallout from Adscam is the latest poll that shows 54% In Quebec Back Sovereignty.
"When asked if by voting for sovereignty they still wanted Quebec to continue to be a part of Canada, 56 per cent of respondents said yes and 40 per cent responded no, with 4 per cent undecided.
Renewed federalism remained the preferred option for a sizable portion of the population, according to the poll, but voters are still deeply divided over the issue.When asked if they believed in the possibility of renewed federalism in which Quebec would have its "rightful place in Canada," about 48 per cent expressed confidence it could happen; 45 per cent said no and 8 per cent refused to answer or didn't know.
"What this poll really says is that Canada still remains the first choice of a majority of Quebeckers. But if there is no offer of renewed federalism, Quebeckers are prepared to go to the extreme and vote for sovereignty. In other words they will choose sovereignty by default," Mr. Léger said.
The Bloc Québécois appears poised to capitalize on the backlash against the federal Liberals. The poll says it now leads by 31 percentage points. After distribution of the undecided voters in a proportion equal to the expressed voting intentions, 53 per cent said they would vote for the Bloc, 22 per cent for the Liberals, 12 per cent for the Conservatives, 9 per cent for the NDP and 3 per cent for other parties."

And so once again the two Social Democratic parties in the Commons are on opposite ends of the spectrum over the issue of soverignty. The fault here lies in the NDP old guard like Broadbent and Blakie, who see themselves a parlimentarian federalists, not radical reformers like their predecesors, Tommy Douglas and Stanely Knowles.

Kyoto well the BQ's plan is problematic for whatever Quebec gets the other provinces will want, thus playing into the hands of the biggest corporate polluters in Ontario and Alberta. Instead here again the NDP flubbed they should have demanded changes in the Liberals Kyoto plans, to reduce the taxpayer costs of reforms and put higher penalties on corporate polluters.

Neither of these was done. But EI above all is the biggest miss with this otherwise strategic political move that places the NDP clearly on the side of Ontario Workers, to the left of the Liberals, which is where the polling shows the Liberal vote going, and to the Greens of course, which is why Layton pushes Kyoto.

Kyoto now is a made in Ontario Plan which is close to Laytons heart and he can sell it now or in an election, with the support of Canadian Auto Workers union. It was no mistake that the Liberals made their deal with the NDP shortly after CAW President Buzz Hargrove met Paul Martin yesterday, in support of taxpayer funding of Big Three Auto Projects in Canada.

But to hear the sacred names of NDP leaders Stephen Knowles and Tommy Douglas invoked by Harper in critizing the NDP accord is enough to make one gag.

The Tories are misreading the polls, bouyed by the current feeding frenzy they are preparing for power, to go for power, to call an election, which will at best leave them a minority government.

And if we are only going to have an election only to elect a minority government Canadians ask why not stick with "the Devil you know than the Devil you don't".

Mr. Harper is the devil we don't know and he still scares the bejezzus out of the average social democratic Canadian. And by his own admission in his speech the decision on who governs if he brings down the Liberals is up to the Ontario.

This is not going to be a Federal Election but an Ontario Election.

Quebec will go solidly to the BQ with big losses to the Liberals, Alberta will wipe out its last standing Liberal, and BC and the Prairies will see gains for the NDP.

The Maritimes will be a battle Royale but of not a deal breaker. Unfortunately the NDP did not get the Atlantic Accord pulled out of the budget as the Opposition parties had all demanded. Had they then their fortunes in the Atlantic provinces would have seiously challenged the tough two way fights between Conservatives and Liberals.

Alexa McDonough, New Democrat MP for Halifax, said her party supports the offshore revenue accord and pushed for it to be removed from the budget, but the Liberals wouldn't do it." CBC

But the real election will be in Ontario, which is why the gaggle of Party Leaders spent the weekend there. And the NDP budget speaks to workers in Ontario, as 'flabergasted' Mr. Harper reminded us.


Liberal budget loses $3.6B in tax cuts, gains $4.6B in spending for NDP support

Earlier, Mr. Layton said he had reached a "deal in principle" to rewrite the budget to his liking in exchange for support against a non-confidence motion from the Conservatives. He said a handshake agreement had been struck and said the only commitment the NDP had given the Liberals is to oppose a non-confidence motion seeking to topple the government.

"We're not actually supporting a government, we're supporting a budget," he said. "When the vote comes on the government, believe me, we'll be running hard against them."

The NDP's price: $3.6-billion worth of corporate tax cuts stricken from the budget and $4.6-billion pumped into NDP-selected social programs over the next two years -- affordable housing, education and training, the environment and foreign aid.The deal will be topped up by government funds from a projected $9-billion surplus.

Globe and Mail April 27, 2005

The deal would see $4.6-billion in new spending over this year and next. Though the Liberal and NDP House leaders were continuing to negotiate details last night, the new spending is expected to include $1.6-billion over two years for affordable housing, including a specific fund for aboriginal housing.

Other new spending (all amounts would be spread over two years):

$1.5-billion to the provinces provided there is a pledge the money will go to reduce postsecondary tuition fees;

$900-million for environmental initiatives, such as a program to encourage low-income Canadians to conduct energy retrofits of their homes and an extra cent per litre of the gas tax will go toward municipalities;

$500-million for foreign aid;

$100-million in a "pension protection fund" to assist senior citizens who have lost their private pension due to a company declaring bankruptcy, though only the NDP would confirm that this measure is in the agreement.

The Prime Minister said the deal will not put the government in the red; at least $2-billion a year will still go toward paying down the national debt.

Friday, April 22, 2005

The Real Adscam: Outsourcing

Beside the shady backroom deals funding the Quebec Liberals from sponsorship kick backs the real source of the vast overpayments to the private sector ad companies in Quebec is, wait for it, contracting out.

Outsourcing rather than doing the work in house is a policy that the Liberals have had for the past decade, and it has led to the Billion Dollar Boondoggles of P3's, computer outsourcing scandals in the Defense and Justice Depatments. Now it has come home to roost in the Public Works department. It gives new meaning to Reinventing Government.

Now thats a scandal the Conservatives won't be bringing up in the house since they support contracting out the government.

Yep remember that the next time the neo-cons claim the private sector is more efficient than the public sector....we can all chant Adscam Adscam....take that Fraser Institute.

Gomery told how companies raked in double commissions

CBC News
MONTREAL - The Gomery inquiry continued hearing testimony on Wednesday from Claude Boulay whose company Group Everest and its subsidiaries received $67 million in federal sponsorship contracts. Boulay testified there's a reason he collected two commissions when his advertising company did business with the federal government. Unlike some companies that handle public relations and marketing in-house the federal government decided to contract out the service to the private sector. Boulay said that made it possible for Group Everest to bid on sponsorship contracts. The contracts, he said, included a commission paid by Ottawa for finding marketing opportunities for the 'Canada' brand.

One man's false invoice is another man's...
Globe and Mail
A teenie part of one of those contracts was for "promotional items," with one of Mr. Boulay's companies (Sensas) in charge of securing the items, and then billing another of the subsidiaries (Everest Publicité, which in turn billed the federal Public Works Department).
Inquiry documents show that Sensas billed Everest Publicité $186,200, of which $105,506, or 57 per cent of the price, was pure profit. Everest billed Ottawa $243,313, of which $57,113, or 23 per cent was additional pure profit.
Mr. Boulay attempted to compare this by saying that when General Motors orders a part from a supplier, the supplier will charge a markup, and when GM then sells it, it too will add a markup.
"But Sensas is a subsidiary of Everest," Judge Gomery noted. "To compare it to GM is a bit weak . . . they go outside. You bought within your own organization . . . it all happened within Groupe Everest."
"Yes," said Mr. Boulay.
As inquiry lawyer Marie Cossette said, "I'm reiterating my argument, Mr. Boulay -- these are public funds, and there are two commissions to the same agency?" Mr. Boulay, who was not nearly so smiley yesterday as during his first in the stand, merely shrugged and said, "Look, Public Works . . ."
In other words, the government set the rules, so who was he not to take advantage of them?

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Fascists were CSIS Front

Heritage Front founder Droege shot dead

Thu, 14 Apr 2005
CBC News
TORONTO - A white supremacist who once led the neo-Nazi Heritage Front has reportedly been shot dead in a suburban Toronto apartment. Reports say Wolfgang Droege was found dead after police responded to complaints of gunshots at a Scarborough apartment building Wednesday afternoon.
When they arrived, they found a man with gunshot wounds in the hall of the building and a suspect barricaded inside an apartment. Police negotiated with the man for an hour before arresting him. They say no hostages were involved in the standoff but a school nearby was locked down for safety during the standoff. Police gave no information about the victim or the shooter or the relationship between them.
Born in Germany
Droege, 55, was born in Germany and moved to Canada in the early 1970s.He joined the Ku Klux Klan in 1976 and tried to start a branch of the group in Toronto. In 1981, he helped organize a failed attempt to invade the Caribbean country of Dominica and overthrow its government. He was given a three-year prison sentence. Droege was arrested in Alabama in 1985 and charged with cocaine possession and a weapons offence. The U.S. deported him to Canada in April 1989 after he served a U.S. prison sentence for those charges. In October of that year he set up the now-defunct Heritage Front.

Far from being 'defunct' the Heritage Front still exists . It was set up by Droege and Grant Bristow.

It is interesting to note in today's news story about Droege's death, Droege is credited with founding the Heritage Front, when they know full well it was a CSIS front setup by Bristow. The media are promoting the fiction that the exposure of the Heritage Front destroyed it, which is not true, nor did it reduce the Fascist movement in Canada except to drive it further underground.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service, CSIS had funded and set up the right wing Heritage Front with their agent inside the White Power Movement; Grant Bristow, while Droege was the front man. Grant Bristow was the real 'source' behind the founding of the Heritage Front according to Droege and he was the CSIS 'source' inside HF.

After Bristow was outed in a Toronto Sun article in 1994, he and his family were moved from Toronto to St. Albert just outside of Edmonton, he was given a new identity and given a new house, worth over $150,000 at the time, new car, and a monthly salary from CSIS. Today he lives in Calgary, allegedly under the assumed name of Nathan Black.

No longer on the CSIS payroll he came out in public last summer as being the CSIS agent in HF, apparently being broke is a big incentive to speaking out for Bristow.

Far from being a move to a safe house Edmonton and the rural region of Central Alberta was a hotbed of fascist activity with the Aryan Nations and white power skin heads under the leadership of Terry Long. Long was well known to the HF and was the focus of fascist activity in Western Canada.

Long's Aryan Skinhead Thugs were on trial here for attacking a former Journalist who was Jewish.

Keith Rutherford, a retired radio broadcaster, was confronted at his suburban Edmonton home in April 1990 by two Skinheads angry over a 30-year-old broadcast in which he had exposed an alleged Nazi war criminal. Rutherford was kicked in the groin and struck in the face with a club, causing serious damage to his eye. Charged in the attack were Daniel Sims and Mark Swanson, both 19 at the time. Sims, who appeared in court in an Aryan Nations T-shirt, received a 60-day sentence after pleading guilty to assault; Swanson got eight months for aggravated assault. The Crown Attorney later appealed Sims' sentence, and it was augmented to 18 months." The Skinhead International: Canada

The failure of the Organized Crime unit of the RCMP to take Long's Aryan Nations seriously eventually led to a mass Aryan Nations rally in Provost, Alberta. The RCMP would later say they had infiltrated with a double agent, an Aryan Nations member who was willing to sell them information. Their inside agent later turned out to be responsible for murdering an aboriginal trapper whom he claimed was trying to rob his Gun Store in Saskatchewan.

Leo LaChance was shot to death last Jan. 28 as he left the Northern Gun & Pawn Shop, owned by Carney Milton Nerland, the 25-year-oldleader of the Saskatchewan chapter of the white supremacist Church of Jesus Christ Christian -- Aryan Nation. Globe and Mail. July 11, 1991, Leo LaChance murder,

Instead of reducing the growth of the fascist movement in Canada, Bristow and CSIS were instrumental in its growth and should take the blame for the injuries and deaths that followed in their wake.

Several Canadian cities have witnessed the establishment of racist skinhead groups and in these communities, the consequences have been tragic. Individuals linked to groups such as the Northern Hammerskins, the Final Solution Skins, the Aryan Resistance Movement (ARM) have been responsible for
assaults, gay-bashing and murder.
In 1990, Edmonton Final Solution Skins and Aryan Nations associate Dan Sims was convicted for attacking and blinding retired radio broadcaster Keith Rutherford.
In June 1990, Kevin Dyer Lake, an ARM skinhead was found guilty of murdering Vietnamese student Tony Le in Toronto.
In 1993, Sivarajah Vinasithamby, a Sri Lankan immigrant was beaten and left paralyzed after awhite power concert in Toronto.
In 1998, skinheads were charged in the death of Nirmal Singh Gill, a Sikh caretaker in a temple in Surrey, BC. Also in 1998, Montreal skinheads injured 30 people in Montreal bars. They now face 240 various criminal charges.
Facing Hate in Canada

Bristow publicly came out last August. He claimed an interview published in the September 2004 Walrus Magazine interview, below, and in his public coming out as an Anti-Fascist last summer, to single handedly be CSIS's James Bond in the White Supremacist movement.

Originally he had infiltrated the left and the anti-apartheid movement for the South African Intelligence Service in Canada, which is how he got approached by CSIS.

He underplays his and CSIS role in actually creating the Heritage Front. Much as he did when he was their secret source in the HF and reported to the Security Intelligence Review Committee, about how CSIS was involved in the HF.

Today he makes out that all along he was an anti-fascist infiltrating the big bad White Power movement because he hated Anti-Semitism. In reality CSIS and Bristow created the HF to infiltrate the White Power movement. In this they were successful; they actually created an organization that popularized the White Power movement.

The scandals that plague CSIS always come down to its internal operations within Canada. This is another reason for having a public inquiry into the Air India Case.

Was this also how CSIS infiltrated the radical nationalists in the Canadian Sikh community and why they destroyed their files and tapes? Because they were less successful in that early operation then they were later in creating a White Supremacist grouplet?

And why is CSIS allowed to infiltrate Canadian labour organizations and the labour movement on behalf of Employers? Not once but twice in the past decade they have infiltrated CUPW following in the estimable footsteps of their predecessors the RCMP. Bristow infiltrated the Post Office for CSIS and the Employer.

And what was CSIS reason to infiltrate the Reform Party of Canada? Were they considered a right wing threat, apparently.

Our Security Service is out of control and has been since it was founded. We need to eliminate CSIS as an internal security service.

Parliament can claim the need to put the agency under full parliamentary oversight, and while this would be an improvement over the 'lap dog' SIRC, it belabors the question, why do we need an Internal Security agency. CSIS focus is not on enemies abroad, but at home. And they are a funnel for intelligence on Canadians to the CIA and other international intelligence agencies.

Since post 9/11 we have been living under a security state that denies Canadian citizens their basic common law rights let alone their constitutional and human rights. The beneficiaries have been the spooks at CSIS who now don't have to answer any questions since they can cover themselves in the cloak of secrecy; National Security.

Is this the fear that the Liberals have about an Air India Inquiry? That it will not dismiss the antics of CSIS but rather show that the agency acted as a provocateur within the radical nationalist Sikh community as it would later in founding the Heritage Front.

The SIRC, the Security Intelligence Review Committee, that looked into the CSIS Heritage Front connection is an interesting read, they maintain a schizophrenic approach to information. In order not to out Bristow as the 'CSIS source' within the Heritage Front, they refer to Bristow as member of the HF leadership. Their source Bristow himself of course provides boni-fides for Bristow the Fascist.

Excerpts are published below, regarding Bristow, CSIS, and the infiltration of HF, CUPW, the Reform Party, Ever the opportunist he attempted to blame the 'left' for fire bombing the Morgentaler clinic in Toronto to throw the anti-abortion movement into a bad light.

It was only last August that Bristow finally outed himself as the CSIS source within the HF. How much the Walrus paid him for his interview has not been disclosed? But knowing Bristow he made money off this as he did setting up the HF.

Is it coincidental that Bristow came out as CSIS and the Government was preparing to extradite fascist Ernst Zundel under the new National Security Act?

Zundel’s extradition case began in January 2004 and CSIS and Bristow’s role in the Heritage Front was raised by the defense but the Judge disallowed any reference to this due to 'national security.' Even then CSIS refused to admit Bristow was 'their source' in the HF.

Ever the opportunist Bristow has also managed to wheel and deal his coming out as a secret agent in the HF as a rubber chicken dinner speaker in the Jewish community. How much he charges to speak as the spy who loves you, is not known.

A warning to readers, some sources linked here will lead you to racist/fascist sites. It is the fascist movement themselves that provide details on their infiltration by CSIS. They wear it as a badge of honour that CSIS found them important enough to infiltrate.

And of course they are all peaceful law abiding citizens who did not even conceive of any violent acts until prompted by Grant Bristow.

"Almost from the beginning, the non-violent Heritage Front, in contravention of the definition of "threat to national security" in the CSIS Act, was targetted by Canada's spooks. CSIS infiltrated a well paid agent, Grant Bristow into the Heritage Front. He funneled money to the HF and constantly urged violence and confrontational tactics, gradually leading the HF in a direction which destroyed it."
Paul Fromm, Wolfgang Droege - Rest In Peace

Of course they are only kidding, themselves the rest of us know that fascist's are thugs.


September 2004:
Front Man
Grant Bristow kept silent for almost ten years about his controversial role as a CSIS spy in Canada's neo-Nazi movement. Now, finally, he's ready to tell his side of the story. by Andrew Mitrovica

Grant Bristow Speaking in Front of Swastika

Canadian Press

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

OTTAWA (CP) - Grant Bristow, who infiltrated the white supremacist movement as a paid informant for Canada's spy service, has broken his long silence, saying he took on the unsavoury task because it was "the right thing to do."

Bristow's comments mark the first time he has publicly discussed his controversial role as an undercover operative for the Canadian Security Intelligence Service since being exposed in the media 10 years ago. He tells his side of the spy saga in the September issue of The Walrus magazine, to be published Thursday.

The 46-year-old Bristow, who has long lived in relative quiet under a new name, sat down with journalist Andrew Mitrovica in a drab Edmonton motel room to try to dispel his lingering public image as a hatemonger.

"Now is the time," he told Mitrovica, "that I can say, 'Not guilty."'

Bristow insists that far from being a racist, he was determined to make the world "a less hateful place."

His mother, Janet, had imbued the young Bristow with a devotion to civil rights and a respect for all races, the article says. And the harrowing recollections of a family friend who had survived the Holocaust left "an indelible mark" on Bristow.

His relationship with CSIS began in 1986 when he was working as a private security consultant and a South African diplomat tried to persuade him to spy on Canadian anti-apartheid activists.

On the advice of a friend, he approached the intelligence agency.

"In the nomenclature of spies, Bristow had become an 'asset."' the article says.

His chance meeting with a member of the extreme right eventually led to Bristow's central role in Operation Governor, a CSIS investigation of the white supremacist movement.

The racist right had been invigorated by the April 1989 deportation to Canada of white supremacist Wolfgang Droege, fresh from a U.S. prison sentence for cocaine trafficking and weapon possession.

In October of that year, Droege set up The Heritage Front, a continental network of racists.

Bristow lived a schizophrenic existence, working by day as an investigator for a shipping firm and spending evenings and weekends nurturing his ties to the racist right, the article says.

"I was keeping watch over violent hate groups," he said. "It was the right thing to do."

The operation grew troubling when tensions erupted between the supremacists and anti-racist groups.

Bristow insists he faced an unenviable dilemma. As Droege's deputy, he couldn't be seen to ignore provocations of the Heritage Front's enemies, the article says. At the same time, as a government-paid agent, he could not promote or countenance a violent response.

"I was walking a very thin tightrope," Bristow said.

His solution was to co-ordinate and take part in a campaign, with the knowledge and approval of his CSIS handler, to harass key anti-racist activists at home and work.

"I was trying to find a response that didn't include out-of-control, escalating violence," he told the magazine. "If I was wrong in the actions that I took, I must take responsibility for that."

Bristow's attempts to keep a lid on the violence fell apart in May 1993 when police, anti-racist activists and about 60 Heritage Front members clashed in a wild melee in downtown Ottawa.

During Bristow's time inside the racist organization, information he supplied to CSIS led to the arrest and deportation of some supremacists, the article says.

In early 1994, convinced the Heritage Front was imploding, Bristow planned to bow out of Operation Governor.

A short time later, his involvement was exposed by the Toronto Sun, prompting the operative and his family to go underground.

A 1995 report by the Security Intelligence Review Committee, the watchdog over CSIS, concluded Bristow (not identified by name in the report) played only a small role in the Heritage Front's development despite being part of its inner circle.

The review committee admonished Bristow for tactics that "tested the limits" of acceptable and appropriate behaviour, but ultimately found Canadians owed him a debt for doing valuable work.

At the time, Elisse Hategan, a prominent defector from the Heritage Front, slammed the report as a whitewash. She told a Commons committee the front would never have been so effective without Bristow's work.

Bristow now says it was all business, arguing he never suffered from what he calls "target love."

Following his exposure in the press, CSIS set Bristow and his family up in a new city. But the media soon found him.

The article says the stress and uncertainty of life in the aftermath of his covert work led to the collapse of his marriage four years ago.

Bristow took the first step toward openly discussing his role last year in a speech to a private gathering of the Canadian Jewish Congress in Toronto.

His story was greeted with applause, muffled weeping and a standing ovation, the article says.

Irving Abella, a historian and former president of the congress, effusively praised Bristow at the invitation-only gathering. "I think what was most important about this evening was how heroic this man was."

Still, the article notes Bristow's long public silence has deepened the mystery that surrounded his clandestine work for CSIS.

"To his foes, he is a Judas who betrayed loyal friends. To others, he remains an unrepentant agent-provocateur on the public payroll," Mitrovica writes.

"Still others consider him a hero who risked his life for his beliefs, and is now living with the consequences - a dissolved marriage, an uncertain future, and an occasional brush with fear."

“Frontman” Bristow an exceptional story

August 12, 2004

TORONTO – Calling him a hero, Canadian Jewish Congress Ontario Region credits former CSIS informant Grant Bristow with bringing down the Heritage Front, a white supremacist group he infiltrated in the early 1990s.

Bristow’s story is told in “Frontman,” an article in today’s issue of The Walrus written by investigative reporter Andrew Mitrovica. This is the first time Bristow has publicly discussed his role as an undercover operative for Canada’s spy agency since being exposed publicly 10 years ago.

“We’re very glad that Grant Bristow’s side of the story will now be told,” said Ed Morgan, CJC national president. “His private address to our CJCONT Executive last year told the story of a man who risked his life to battle hatemongers,” he added.

“The Heritage Front, a virulently racist white supremacist group, no longer exists, thanks to Bristow,” said Bernie Farber, executive director of CJC Ontario Region and a one-time target of the group. “Despite what some may see as questionable tactics, Bristow’s actions led directly to a major breakdown in Canada’s white supremacist movement,” he added.

“One of CJC’s key roles is to fight racism and antisemitism in our country,” noted Ed Morgan. “Bristow’s courage and willingness to help in that fight, at great personal cost, has made Canada a better place.”

For more information contact: Wendy Lampert, Communications and Public Affairs Director, CJC Ontario Region, 416-631-5844 or 416-575-4675 (cell)

Ten years ago today, Grant Bristow thought he'd successfully performed an important public service. He'd spent 6 months working undercover among Canada's leading white supremacists, before returning to his life as a family man. Then a Toronto journalist blew his cover, and observers began to question Bristow's actions. We reached Grant Bristow in Calgary.

The Article that Exposed CSIS

Wednesday, August 17, 1994

Spying Slammed

Activist Considers Suing CSIS Mole

Bill Dunphy
Toronto Sun

A harassment campaign organized by a CSIS spy in the neo-Nazi movement was so intense one victim received police protection.

Rodney Bobiwash, an anti-racist activist, told a news conference yesterday that after death threats by local racists he was given police protection for a period of time.

Bobiwash - who until recently rarely appeared in public without two bodyguards - said yesterday he's considering suing the Canadian Security Intelligence Service and their paid informant in the Heritage Front, Grant Bristow.

"The actions of CSIS and Bristow are nothing less than reprehensible and I'm seeking legal advice," he said.

The Sunday Sun revealed that Bristow, who helped to conceive and build the Heritage Front into the biggest group in the racist right wing, was a CSIS spy for more than five years.

An unlicensed private investigator, Bristow ran the Front's intelligence and security wing, using it to mount a harassment campaign against anti-racists.

That campaign, the activists charged yesterday, included assaults, fire bombings and even the murder of a Tamil man.

They acknowledged they had no evidence linking Bristow to any of those acts.


"The Heritage Front has wreaked havoc on the relations in the community," said Nigela McLean of the Urban Alliance on Race Relations.

"We are outraged," McLean said, calling for a full and independent investigation into the spy agency's activities.

Martin Theriault, of the Canadian Centre on Racism and Prejudice said a criminal investigation of CSIS, Bristow and# Metro Police was required to get to the bottom of things.


Reform Pary infiltrated by CSIS

From the Western Canada Concept by Keltie Zubko

In the midst of the Grant Bristow affair, comes a small article originating from CP/Ottawa, titled "Manning vows to purge Reform of supremacists", dated September 17, 1994:

"The Reform party will revoke the membership of anyone who belongs to a white supremacist group such as the Heritage Front, leader Preston Manning said Friday. "If they are, we'll throw them out," Manning said. "There is no compatibility between Reform and the Heritage Front."

"Manning said the party executive Friday terminated the membership of Max French, a member of the Heritage Front and Reform party who registered this week as a candidate for mayor of Scarborough, a suburb of Toronto.

"The party didn't know he was a Reform member "until he started bragging about it," Manning said."

Juxtaposed with this small article are larger ones in which Preston Manning tells of having Grant Bristow, CSIS operative, inadvertently as his body guard, and alleges that he spied on the Reformers, and then claims that such activities have seriously damaged the success of the Reform party, costing them votes, even, in the federal election.


On 14 August 1994, the Toronto Sun announced that Grant Bristow, a supposedly well-paid CSIS informer, had not only infiltrated Canada's extreme right but had helped found with the taxpayer's money, a white racist organization called the Heritage Front. Within a matter of days the accusations against CSIS had broadened to include using Bristow to spy on reporters investigating racism in the Canadian Forces in Somalia, infiltrating the Reform Party with a view to undermining that party by fostering links to racist groups, as well as spying on the Postal Workers Union and the Canadian Jewish Congress.

Equally quickly, there were demands for inquiries and promises to conduct them. According to the Executive Director of SIRC, the Review Committee was eager to prove itself equal to the challenge. It announced that it would be conducting an investigation and submitting a report to the minister. Likewise, the Sub-committee on National Security noted that it would also be conducting an investigation but did not plan to call witnesses from CSIS. Significantly, it said that it planned to discuss SIRC's investigation with them.

Less than two weeks later Brian McInnis, a former political advisor to Douglas Lewis when he was Solicitor General, acknowledged that he had "leaked" a confidential CSIS memorandum to a newspaper reporter on which the story had been based. McInnis had blown the whistle because he found it "reprehensible and wrong" that CSIS had an informant in the white -supremacist group. 24 Apparently, McInnis had chosen to release the information to the media because he wanted to ensure that his message got out. While he could have gone to SIRC with his complaint, McInnis denigrated the committee by describing it as "more of a lapdog than a watchdog" that "doesn't seem to have teeth." 25 McInnis was subsequently arrested, his house searched, and some twenty boxes of papers seized by the police.

Question Period April 24, 1995


Mr. Michel Bellehumeur (Berthier-Montcalm, BQ): Mr. Speaker, my question is for the Solicitor General.

Last September, Michel Robert, spokesperson for the Security Intelligence Review Committee told the Sub-committee on National Security that he did not know what had become of Grant Bristow. The Toronto Star has uncovered him in Edmonton, complete with a new identity, a new house, two cars and an income of $3,000 a month, compliments of the Government of Canada and Canadian taxpayers.

Before providing Mr. Bristow with a new identity and sending him into hiding once again, would the Solicitor General acknowledge that Mr. Bristow must appear before the Sub-committee on National Security in order to fully clarify his role in the racist group Heritage Front and his infiltration into the entourage of the leader of the Reform Party.


Hon. Herb Gray (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, it has never been confirmed that Grant Bristow is a CSIS source or was a CSIS source. As a result I do not think there is anything further I can add in reply to the hon. member's question.


Mr. Michel Bellehumeur (Berthier-Montcalm, BQ): Mr. Speaker, how can the Solicitor General abdicate his responsibilities with regard to Grant Bristow's role as a CSIS source, when a report by the review committee considers that Mr. Bristow exceeded the mandate of a CSIS source.

Why is the Solicitor General making such an effort to hide Grant Bristow?


Hon. Herb Gray (Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and Solicitor General of Canada, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I think my hon. friend is mistaken. The report of the SIRC, the Security Intelligence Review Committee, did not confirm that Grant Bristow was a source of CSIS. It did however confirm that CSIS did a good job, a proper job and a necessary job investigating the Heritage Front.

Criminal Lawyers Association of Canada
Newsletter December 1996

by Paul Copeland

The House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Legal Affairs also reviewed Bristow's role in the Heritage Front. The Committee report was released in June 1996 and is entitled The Heritage Front Affair: Our View.

The majority of the Committee was not prepared to follow SIRC's lead in attempting to rehabilitate the reputation of CSIS. The majority of the Committee commented on Bristow's revelations to police sources that he was involved in a long term CSIS operation. On one occasion CSIS stopped using Bristow as an informant because of Bristow's revelations to police sources.

The Committee was concerned that at least five different activities carried out by Bristow breached the ministerial direction that human sources are not to engage in illegal activities or to do things that will bring discredit on the service or the Government of Canada. The following paragraph appears in the majority report of the Committee:

There remains, to even the casual observer, an over-riding question as to whether the presence of the Source and/or Bristow (if he was a source) helped the Heritage Front to grow and develop. We feel compelled to ask whether the presence of a CSIS source or sources was a positive factor in the growth of the Heritage Front - SIRC could have more effectively pursued this issue.

There are dissenting opinions to the Committee report. An unlikely alliance of the Bloc Quebecois and the Reform Party was critical of CSIS and of the SIRC investigation of the Heritage Front Affair. In the dissenting report the following paragraphs appear:

However, there came a time, as indicated in the preceding section of this Report, when it was concluded in a 1990-91 submission to TARC (Target Approval and Review Committee of CSIS) that extreme right organizations and their related activities were petty criminal in nature and did not constitute a threat to the security of Canada. It is not clear to the opposition members of the Sub-Committee why the Service did not simply refer these matters to law enforcement agencies, rather that redirecting the investigation and the Source (Bristow) for more than an initial period to the leadership of the extreme right wing. The key question is what was the justification for the continued targeting and the presence of the Source (Bristow) after 1990. SIRC did not clearly address this issue in either in its report on the Heritage Front affair or in its 1994-95 annual report.

Despite his failure to exercise discretion by revealing his activities on behalf of CSIS, the Source (Bristow is the Source, but the Sub-Committee did not name him) was kept on and allowed to continue in place until March 1994, when he had his leave-taking. The Sub-Committee has misgivings about the Service's decision to leave this Source in place for another five years despite failings in the early days of his contact with CSIS. This concern is buttressed by the nature of some of the questionable activities engaged in by the Source in the heyday of the Heritage Front between 1991 and 1993. Although it is impossible to determine what the Heritage Front would have become without the presence of the Source as part of its leadership group, it is possible to know what it did when he was there....

The Party Quebecois released their own dissenting opinion. Concerning SIRC they wrote as follows:

The attitude of the members of SIRC when they appeared before the Sub-Committee was quite simply contemptuous. The members of the Sub-Committee cannot take personal offence, but the parliamentary institution from which the Sub-Committee derives its authority cannot tolerate such behaviour. SIRC members consistently refuse to cooperate with the Sub-Committee. Through their answers to some questions, by their refusal to answer others and by the mental evasion that characterized their evidence, SIRC members have demonstrated contempt of Parliament and should therefore be relieved of their duties.

This comment does not apply to Ms. Paule Gauthier.

It is equally disturbing to note that the Ministry of the Solicitor General and even the Privy Council Office appear to have lost control of the Service.

The Reform Party dissent from the Sub-Committee report contains the following paragraphs:

While SIRC made all efforts to down play Bristow's role in the creation and operation of the Heritage Front, clearly he was responsible for much of the success of the organization. The best indication of Bristow's role in the Heritage Front was the video that the Front put out with excerpts of Bristow's speeches, that had been edited out of previously released videos.

The excerpts from this video show that Bristow was the main administrator of the Heritage Front. He is responsible for the raising of money, for selling memberships, literature and paraphernalia and for getting people out to Heritage Front rallies and demonstrations. His questionable contributions can be best summarized from the one video where he bragged that the Heritage Front in Toronto raised more money to assist incarcerated members of the white supremacist terrorist organization, the Order, than any other group in North America.

I do not know the manner in which the Metropolitan Toronto Police approached Grant Bristow to interview him in regard to testifying against Droege and Overfield. Bristow clearly refused to provide the police with any statements concerning the role of Droege and Overfield in preparing the "Animal Life Series - No.1" flyer. The conclusion I draw from that is that Bristow has no interest in assisting the authorities in prosecuting those two men for promoting racial hatred in Canada. If CSIS is still providing funding to Bristow and providing for his security and relocation, in my view the funding should stop.

SIRC report on CSIS and the Heritage Front

Bristow and I spent a large amount of time together tracking cars during which time the ideas were discussed of forming an organization fighting for white rights. Bristow was instrumental in urging me to seek an alternative to Don Andrews' Nationalist Party. He said that Andrews wasn't even white and never seemed to get anywhere with his white racialist message. He said that an organization needed to be founded which would take the racialist movement into the 1990s by using videotapes, seminars to upgrade people's speaking skills, use of computers, and techniques that are used by major political parties in attracting the masses to our cause. The goal of the new organization was to be an advocacy group for white rights. Bristow and I felt that present immigration was detrimental to the interests of the country because it would eventually turn Canada into a non-white nation. And with it, our institutions would be altered in such a way as to become unrecognizable to the founding people. This would lower the quality of life as we know it. We opposed equity hiring as we viewed it as disadvantaging whites who are essentially the founding people of this nation. (In fact, one of the chief election promises of the Ontario Conservative Party in 1995 was the repeal of these laws and they have in fact now been repealed. The Heritage Front may have played a part in raising public consciousness about these issues by the large amount of publicity we generated.)

On October 3, 1994, the CBC broadcast new information:
"Now new evidence places Bristow inside Canada Post while he was on the CSIS payroll. Now CBC News has learned that five years ago it (Gateways postal plant) was also a target for Grant Bristow. Sources say Bristow spent about three weeks in 1989 in and around the plant, around postal workers, almost every day for at least six hours. At the time Bristow was a security officer for this Toronto shipping firm tracking missing packages. It was also the period he was working for CSIS as a paid informant...sources say at the plant Bristow would walk the mail sorting lines, weigh packages, watch workers handling them."
Darryl Tingely, President of CUPW was quoted in the television newscast as saying there would have been a lot of information of use to Canada Post as the Union was absorbing another one at the time, and a "nasty reorganization was going on." The CUPW President stated that the CBC report would place Bristow in the plant at about the time they were preparing for a strike and for amalgamation with another union. He accused Bristow of spying on postal workers for the Tory government.

An issue was whether Grant Bristow signed up Heritage Front members and other undesirables for the Reform Party. Those persons who are closely associated with the fringe right or the extreme right have stated that Bristow actively encouraged Heritage Front people to join the Reform Party. Private information exchanged between Droege and his trusted cohorts clearly shows that Droege and Overfield wanted their associates to join the Reform Party as a means to encourage white supremacist policies (Overfield) or to effectively discredit the Party (Droege).
As regards Grant Bristow and the Conservative Party, he did work for David Crombie in the mid-1980s. As a favour to his supervisor, Bristow worked for several hours in the 1988 election campaign for Otto Jelinek. His activities on behalf of Jelinek were marginal at best, according to people who worked on Jelinek's campaign.
We examined the reasons why CSIS did not inform the Minister that Heritage Front members had infiltrated the Reform Party. We took into account the fact that the period in which the decision was made was one of transition for the executive level of the Service, and that the Deputy Director of Operations was the Acting Director for most of the Summer and Fall of 1991.
The Acting Director at the time believed that there was no obvious threat to the security of Canada. However, our view is that the decision was of major importance, and should have been taken by the Director himself, not his second-in-command. We are not prepared to second guess what the Director's decision should have been; he may well have come to the same conclusion as his Deputy Director Operations and Analysis.
In any event, the Solicitor General of the day was not informed about the infiltration issue.

Alberta Report January 09, 1995

A blast from Morgentaler's past.

The CSIS probe unearths more speculation that the Toronto fire-bombing wasn't by pro-lifers

There was a federal report last month on the shadowy activities of the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS). The published conclusions of the Security and Intelligence Review Committee, which is still dominated by Tory appointees, was excoriated by critics in the Reform Party as a blatantly partisan cover-up (see accompanying story).

One detail of interest to pro-lifers, however, received scant attention from anyone, including the RPC. A CSIS source, widely presumed to be out-of-control agent Grant Bristow, had told CSIS that the person who fire-bombed Henry Morgentaler's Toronto abortuary in 1992 was not a pro-lifer. Although media like Maclean's (November 21, 1994) have cited the explosion as a "confirmed" example of "anti-abortion violence," police still haven't said who they think did it, and Mr. Bristow linked the crime to an unnamed "left-wing activist" seeking to goad the Ontario government into suppressing pro-life activity.

Although the suspicions of a substance-abusing former strip club bouncer like Mr. Bristow are not conclusive, many pro-lifers have suspected a frame-up. Says Torontonian Jim Hughes, national president of the Campaign Life Coalition, "At the time, Dr. Morgentaler wanted to move to larger quarters--information he passed on to police and news media."


Can't Tell You -- National Security

TORONTO. January 26, 2004. For the second day in a row, defence lead counsel Peter Lindsay questioned a representative of the Canadian Intelligence Service (CSIS) on the witness stand in the Zundel hearing in Toronto. Mr. Lindsay got CSIS spokesman Dave Stewart to explain that a summary prepared for the then Minister of Citizenship and Immigration (Denis Coderre) and the Solicitor General Wayne Easter) last spring was a balanced document.

In questioning that was frequently interrupted by CSIS counsel Murray Rodych, lead Crown Attorney Donald MacIntosh and the judge Mr. Pierre Blais, all of whom seemed to run interference for witness Dave Stewart, Mr. Lindsay slowly revealed a picture of a skewed document which suppressed material favourable to Mr. Zundel. This was the information on which the ministers based their May 1, 2003 certificate declaring Ernst Zundel a "terrorist" and a threat to the security of Canada.

Eventually, Mr. Stewart revealed that CSIS began to consider Mr. Zundel a threat to national security in 1990.

Entering on the explosive ground that lies at the heart of this case -- the animposity of CSIS to Mr. Zundel and the whole right wing -- Mr. Lindsay inquired: "Did CSIS play any role in the creation of the Heritage Front?"

"Not to my knowledge," the CSIS spokesman said.

"Didn't a gentleman named Grant Bristow play a major role in the developm,ent of the Heritage Front?" Mr. Lindsay asked.

"I recall the name, but I would say no," the witness replied.

"Was Grant Bristow an agent of CSIS," Mr. Lindsay continued.

Justice Department lawyer Donald MacIntosh was on his feet. "It's irrelevant. It's not connected to whether the certificate is reasonabvle, not whether it's true, but reasonable," he said, re-stating the incredible low threshold the Crown has to meet the triumph in this case.

"The question about Bristow's being an agent is not allowed," the judge ruled.

"Whether Bristow is an agent of CSIS goes to the fairness of CSIS.the Service makes a big production of the role and dominance of the White Supremacist Movement and Mr. Zundel's influence in it. If CSIS played a role in it, it would be significant."

Doug Christie Defender of Fascists and Rascists on Bristow.

From: "C-FAR" <>

To: <>

Sent: Friday, September 03, 2004 11:00 AM


Mr. Zundel's current lead counsel Peter Lindsay took Mr. Christie back
over nearly two decades of observations of Mr. Zundel and his team at the
old Zundelhaus at 206 Carlton Street in Toronto. Mr. Christie indicated
that he'd had numerous conversations with former Heritage Front leader
Wolfgang Droege over a period of years. "I had numerous discussions with
Mr. Droege in the presence of [CSIS agent and infiltrator] Grant Bristow."
The Battling Barrister from Victoria recalled one particular conversation
alone with Mr. Droege. "We took a long walk along the shore in the Beaches.
Wolfgang bought an ice-cream cone. It was after Bristow was revealed as a
CSIS agent. It was a wide-ranging conversation that dealt with Mr. Zundel,
Mr. Droege and what he thought of Grant Bristow," Mr. Christie related.

At the mention of CSIS agent Bristow, CSIS lawyer Murray Rodych began a
series of objections that Mr. Justice Blais brushed off. "I'm doing a lot
better than the ministers," a feisty Peter Lindsay shot back, "in that I'm
providing live witnesses."

"Mr. Droege told me he wasn't particularly interested in Mr. Zundel. He
was an old man," he said. "He was unable to relate to young people. He
didn't like their music or the way they lived. He was for the old people,
the old Germans. He was out of touch. I asked: 'Do you keep in touch with
Mr. Zundel?' He said: 'Occasionally. He's a nice old guy.'"

Mr. Lindsay questioned Mr. Christie about the "Sneaky Dees" incident. In
the spring of 2003, an ARA mob trashed the house Heritage Front Hotline
broadcaster Gary Schipper had rented. Later that night, a number of members
of the Heritage Front gathered to consider what to do. CSIS agent Bristow
would advocate violence and a revenge attack on the ARA's favourite sleazy
watering hole, a College Street grog shop called "Sneaky Dees."

"I was very concerned,' Mr.Christie testified. "I was always anxious to be
certain who I was representing. I specifically asked Wolfgang to tell me
what had happened at Sneaky Dees. I had heard about it in the media that a
skinhead had gotten into a fight with some so-called anti-racists. It was
the only time the Heritage Front had been involved in violence. There was a
desire for revenge [after the attack on Schipper's.] I was curious as to
who had motivated them, A dozen skinheads and Droege met at Allan Gardens
to discuss action. At Allen Gardens, Mr. Droege told me, 'Grant Bristow was
foaming at the mouth and spitting. He was saying we had to take the war to
the enemy and show them we could fight.' Wolfgang then went to see Mr.
Zundel. He told them not to do it. It was a trap and they'd be prosecuted.
They didn't follow Mr. Zundel's advice. A fight ensured and Mr. Droege was

Despite objections from lead Crown counsel Donald MacIntosh, Mr. Lindsay
next questioned Mr. Christie about a list of prominent Jewish individuals
developed by CSIS agent Grant Bristow. Mr. Christie recalled a meeting with
Bristow and Droege in Victoria. "The place was then known as Johnnie's
Restaurant at Fort and Quadra Street. It was after the Supreme Court
decision regarding Mr. Zundel [in 1992]. Bristwo sat two feet in front of
me. Droege sat to his left across the table. Droege said: 'Grant had a list
of prominent Jews, their addresses and phone numbers and he thinks it's
time to take the war to the Jews. Grant is a security advisor and private
detective and he got the list.' I told them they were nuts," Mr. Christie