Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Ignatieff’s Liberals only believe in transparency when it suits them. Ditto the NDP


Transparency is a cornerstone of democracy. Without transparency, democracies merely devolve into the equivalent of totalitarian states where those in power can do anything they want, and employing whatever false pretenses they wish to “justify” their unilateral actions.

Without the ability to reveal the truth about otherwise false pretenses, citizens become merely the instruments by which others attain absolute power.

So why do the Liberals under Michael Ignatieff only care about transparency when it suits their purposes, as we are witnessing in the events of the last two weeks? This makes them virtually no different that the Harper Conservatives.

Invoking principles like transparency, as the Liberals are doing on the matter of seeking access to the information contained in the blacked out documents concerning Afghan detainees, is not a principle if it is selectively administered and selectively championed, as the Liberals are doing. Instead it is merely an artifice, an excuse, a means of self advancement and political opportunism of the most cynical and exploitative kind.

Why are the Liberals not demanding the information contained in the blacked out documents that the Harper government offered up as their only “proof” of tax leakage with the same level of vigour and sanctimonious zeal as they are displaying on the Afghan detainee file? Why? The ONLY conclusion is that the Liberal Party’s interest in transparency is reserved for those situations that benefit THEM, and the need for transparency is not a universal principle of the Liberal party and designed to benefit CANADIANS.

I want nothing to do with a party or a political leader who applies such a fundamental principle like transparency in a completely arbitrary, ad hoc and self serving manner. Ignatieff needs to correct this gross disparity being displayed by his parties actions, Failure to do so, will only mean that the potential solution afforded by a Liberal Party in office, will only be as bad ( maybe worse?) as the one they hope to replace, namely the Harper Conservatives, when it comes to achieving any degree of real transparency for Canadians from those who govern us and those who ostensibly represent us.

My own Member of Parliament,. Carolyn Bennett, affords another good example of the Liberal party’s true inner beliefs when it comes to transparency, when she openly opposed in February of this year, the idea of Canada’s Parliamentary Budget Officer, Kevin Page, making his findings available to the public at large (true transparency) as opposed to what she was advocating, just to MPs (faux transparency and political opportunism).

For the time being I think the Liberal Party needs to climb down from its high horse, as it only SELECTIVELY CHAMPIONS the cause of transparency. Better would be if the Liberal Party under Ignatieff were to begin to apply the concept of transparency on a consistent and universal basis.

Every time I see one of Ujjal Dosangh. Bob Rae, Micahel Ignatieff, Daniel Leblanc or some other Liberal pontificate about the need for transparency on this Aghan detainee issue and mount their high horse of moral rectitude and sanctimonious indignation, I am reminded of how hypocritical they are being by completely letting down ALL CANADIAN TAXPAYERS by not revealing the patent falsehoods of Harper allegation that income trusts cause tax leakage, which was the very central premise on which his income trust tax policy was based. A policy that has seen the wholesale foreign takeover of Canadian businesses, which left unaddressed will lead to the loss of $7.5 billion in annual tax revenue.

Enough with the sham democracies that rule this country, be they Liberal or Conservative, They are all shams of one form or another, as they attempt to mislead Canadians at large on bahalf of the narrow vested interests that pull both party’s strings.

It is clear from the Liberal’s total disinterest in the truth (ie patent lies) about tax leakage who they are really working for. And its certainly not the 33 million Canadian taxpayers and citizens of this country. That much is abundantly transparent from their total disinterest in revealing that patent falsehood that is being disguised by Harper’s 18 pages of blacked out tax leakage documents. Torture is more the Liberal’s cup of tea than restoring the $35 billion in retirement savings that Canadians lost on the basis of a complete lie.

Meanwhile, if we only have the political opportunism of the Liberals to rely on concerning the matter of transparency, does it not occur to the Liberals that a trend can not be established from a single data point, and that trends require at least two data points to have any meaning? Even Ujjal Dosangh expressed concerns that some Canadians will fall victim to the Conservative’s argument that most Canadians don’t care whether one Afghan tortures another Afghan. This may well be true for many of the mindless people who vote for Harper, so the appeal needs to be made on the higher level of transparency. To do that, require other example beyond merely the Afghan detainee issue. No better example of that exists than Harper’s use of blacked out documents in the case his tax leakage lie. When will the Liberal ever understand that they have to appeal to the vast masses, of they ever hope to succeed in forming the next government, as indicated by the results of the following Angus Reid survey:

- Four out of five Canadians say the federal government should publicly
release the data and methodology it used to estimate the amount of tax
loss caused by income trusts.

- Only one out of 20 Canadians feel that Finance Minister Flaherty's
proposed income trust legislation will strengthen Canada's social security system
for seniors and pensioners.

- Nearly nine out of 10 Canadians say it is difficult to provide for
themselves with sufficient income when they retire, given today's low
interest rate environment.

- Only one in five Canadians believe Finance Minister Jim Flaherty's
proposal for changing the tax rate on income trusts would level the
playing field.

- The resounding majority of Canadians say Finance Minister Flaherty's
proposed tax legislation is unfair to Canadians who hold income trusts
in their RRSPs.

- Finance Minister Flaherty calls his proposed legislation "tax
fairness," but two-thirds of Canadians disagree.

- Only one out of 20 Canadians feel that Finance Minister Flaherty's
proposed legislation will strengthen Canada's social security system
for seniors and pensioners.

- A majority of Canadians say it was wrong for Prime Minister Stephen
Harper to break his election promise not to introduce new taxes on
income trusts.

The Canadian Association of Income Trust Investors (www.caiti.info)
commissioned a poll to test Canadian's level of support for this new tax and
the foundations on which it is based. From March 13 to March 15, 2007, Angus
Reid Strategies conducted a survey of 1138 randomly selected and
representative adult Canadians. The margin of error for the survey was +/-
2.9%, 19 times out of 20.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

When I was writing letters back in 2006 I got similar responses from NDP MP's saying it was too late as many people had already lost their money and sold their trusts. I wrote back that their excuse to do nothing was akin to turning the rescue ships back from the Titanic because some passengers had already drowned...seems there is no will to save trusts anywhere but on this forum...it's pretty sad.
But as you point out, the bigger issue is the loss of Canadian companies and tax revenue because of a lie that should be exposed...
You would think with issues like the deficit, IT's, war crimes, HST, bribery etc. etc. that Harper could be taken down fairly easily yet the Libs are acting like a bunch of newbies and just don't understand the issues.

Polyian

Anonymous said...

"You would think with issues like the deficit, IT's, war crimes, HST, bribery etc. etc. that Harper could be taken down fairly easily yet the Libs are acting like a bunch of newbies and just don't understand the issues."

John McCallum MUST understand what income trists were doing for retirees and small investors.
Remember that this now low profile politician was V/P with Royal Bank.
So, he understands and he is not ready to side with us, ordinary Canadians.
The Bay Street boys club is too importants for him as he also knows that WE we pressuring his friends, the fat cats, for transparancy and for a better share of CASH-FLOWS.
Income trusts were good for us, not for the crooks in charge asking for too large pays, bonuses and options.
Big Corporations don't like it when small investors ask for clarity, transparancy and income.

Income trusts had to die and it was the message sent by Power Corporation, Manulife, Encana and Morgan, Bell Canada and I presume many other fat cats members of the old boys' club.
We didn't have a chance and I don't believe that McCallum misses the knowledge to understand what is happening.
If he is such a dummy, easy for him to understand that now we lose income trusts to foreighners, private equities and pension funds.

Sudenly, Canada is a real loser.

McCallum is now a very small politician and he does not care for a second about us, retirees and small investors.

JML

Anonymous said...

Polyian:

"You would think with issues like the deficit, IT's, war crimes, HST, bribery etc. etc. that Harper could be taken down fairly easily yet the Libs are acting like a bunch of newbies and just don't understand the issues."

You are right on.
It's now evident that the Iggy Lib's are more inept than the party in power.
No one seems to care other than the 100 or so posters and readers here out of 30 million or so....one day they will wake up to find they no longer live in a democracy,a first world country....

Cheers cocopah

Anonymous said...

Interesting, every day - every single day you rant and attack and and everyone is wrong but you.

Once in a while something must be right about this world.

...sigh.

It's Christmas, stop being so absolutely grumpy 24/7.

Anonymous said...

Brent when you say "So why do the Liberals under Michael Ignatieff only care about transparency when it suits their purposes, as we are witnessing in the events of the last two weeks? This makes them virtually no different that the Harper Conservatives."

As a Liberal, I take offense to that!

Will E.

CAITI said...

Will E.

So do I, which is why I speak up against it!

Brent

CAITI said...

Anonymous said...

" Interesting, every day - every single day you rant and attack and and everyone is wrong but you. Once in a while something must be right about this world."

I have never heard anything so lame and idiotic as that. Let's see. Nothing improves so you advocate "Don't worry, be happy".

The advice of s true sycophant. No chance of a better New Year with a rollover and defeatist philosophy like that. Are you sure you don't work for the PMO....or maybe the Globe and Malice?

PS: I never take advice from "Anonymous" people, especially absurd advice like yours, but I suppose you do?

Brent Fullard

Anonymous said...

My goodness, are you still on the income trust thing. Old news. Nobody cares ... well at least not enough for any of the parties to care.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous writes:

"Once in a while something must be right about this world.
...sigh.
It's Christmas, stop being so absolutely grumpy 24/7."

Christmas? Best of the season to you as well

http://www.cbc.ca/video/#/Shows/The_Rick_Mercer_Report/ID=1348216052

Dr Mike said...

Anonymous said...
My goodness, are you still on the income trust thing. Old news. Nobody cares ... well at least not enough for any of the parties to care.

That is one hell of a sad comment & it burns me off to no end.

This is the freaking problem with this whole issue as these guys were allowed to get away with it because no one cared.

When we stop caring because it is not "sexy" enough , or "it is just those rich old guys" , or it`s ok because "it is not us" , then we have a real problem.

The gov`t is elected by us & we pay their way -- that should be enough on it`s own to expect clarity & full accountability.

In the case of income trusts a specific promise , not to be confused with a mere suggestion , a promise was made to not tax these entities ---this resulted in regular folks going out & buying , some of us a few weeks before the trust disaster.

We lost huge , not only in cash savings , but in our respect for politicians.

In my case , I had been a Con supporter for my whole life & I believed these guys.

Naive you say , probably , but when our future PM makes a very specific promise & makes it over & over again across the length of the country , I feel I have a right to feel certain that what he says will be the truth.

So damn right I care--so should every Canadian out there when blacked-out pages become the norm.

We are losing our democracy right before our very eyes & that is a crying shame.

Still Pissed-off in Rodney & not afraid to say it.

Dr Mike Popovich

Anonymous said...

Here are some Profound Statements fitting to ALL political parties:

1. In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm and three or more is a congress.
-- John Adams

2. If you don't read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.
-- Mark Twain

3. Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But then I repeat myself.
-- Mark Twain

4. I contend that for a nation to try to tax itself into prosperity is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle .
-- Winston Churchill

5. A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.
-- George Bernard Shaw

6. A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, which debt he proposes to pay off with your money.
-- G. Gordon Liddy

7. Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner.
-- James Bovard, Civil Libertarian (1994)

8. Foreign aid might be defined as a transfer of money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries.
-- Douglas Casey, Classmate of Bill Clinton at Georgetown University

9. Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys.
-- P.J. O'Rourke, Civil Li bert ar ian

10. Government is the great fiction, through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else.
-- Frederic Bastiat, French Economist (1801-1850)

11. Government's view of the economy could be summed up in a few short phrases: If it moves, tax it. If it keeps moving, regulate it. And if it stops moving, subsidize it.
-- Ronald Reagan (1986)

12. I don't make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts.
-- Will Rogers

13. If you think health care is expensive now, wait until you see what it costs when it's free!
-- P.J. O'Rourke

14. In general, the art of government consists of taking as much money as possible from one party of the citizens to give to the other.
-- Voltaire (1764)

15. Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you!
-- Pericles (430 B.C.)

16. No man's life, libert y, or property is safe while the legislature is in session.



-- Mark Twain (1866)

17. Talk is cheap...except when Congress does it.
-- Anonymous

18. The government is like a baby's alimentary canal, with a happy appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other.
-- Ronald Reagan

19. The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of the blessings. The inherent blessing of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.
-- Winston Churchill

20. The only difference between a tax man and a taxidermist is that the taxidermist leaves the skin.
-- Mark Twain

21. The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly is to fill the world with fools.
-- Herbert Spencer, English Philosopher (1820-1903)

22. There is no distinctly native American criminal class...save Congress.
-- Mark Twain

23. What this country needs are more unemployed politician s.
-- Edward Langley, Artist (1928-1995)

24. A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have.
-- Thomas Jefferson

Anonymous said...

Brent:

Like anonymous said, you really need to stop harping om matters that, as you rightly point out are "cornerstones of a democracy", as you might actually succeed in making Canada a better place for all, not just for some.

On second thought, KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK! Anonymous be damned.

Doug

Anonymous said...

Oh, yes the Brent - I am tough, angry and don't listen to anyone. Yawn


When people rant and rave 24/7 no one listens after a while. Bring it up periodically might to you more good.

CAITI said...

Bring it up periodically?

More nonsense advice from Anonymous.

I am Anonymous. I am weak, useless and will preach to anyone. Puke

CAITI said...

Anonymous:

Your feeble attempts to get us to not continously pursue the income trust issue until justice is served, and only to do so as you deem appropriate, (which would probably mean never) reminds me so much of Dan Miles, who was incessantly of the same discouraging words as you, and was always lamenting "when will they go away"?

Dan Miles was Flaherty's communications director at the time that his boss gave the shaft yo people who invested based on Harper's "solemn" promise (subsequently a solemn lie).

You wouldn't happen to be Dan Miles would you, intent on stifling our advocacy on behalf of the truth would you?

No? In that case then you might be interested in this:

On Oct. 31, 2006, Flaherty made a very important policy announcement. He announced a plan to tax the distributions of income trusts. It was a sharp reversal of previous government policy, would impact the retirement plans of thousands of Canadians and broke a promise made by the Conservatives in the 2006 election campaign. At the same time, Flaherty announced various tax measures to ease the burden on seniors who would be adversely affected by the trust decision.

So what would be the lead in the news that day? Income trusts, of course! But take a look at the press release issued by Miles when Flaherty made his announcement. You won't find a mention of income trusts in his lead. Instead, the headline reads "Canada's New Government Announces Tax Fairness Plan."

This is a classic example of political spinning. The income trust decision was controversial; it was strongly opposed by many in the investment community and by Canadian seniors. But who could object to a "tax fairness plan"? Miles's job was to try to divert attention away from the more objectionable part of the announcement and get people to focus their attention on the good news. Of course in this case, it didn't work. But you can't blame a guy for trying!


Are you sure you aren't Dan Miles?

Bruce Benson said...

As I said this in an earlier post. When Bush was discussing the war on Terrorism he said, "If you’re not with us, you’re against us". The Liberals are against us. How else can you explain it? Oh don't forget the DIPPERS.