Sandra Finley

Sep 242020
 

For consideration.

There is a large factor to be considered:   Corruption.

How much money the Cameco executives, for example, are making.

Provinces like Saskatchewan do not have laws against Corporate contributions to political parties.

How much influence Anne McLellan, one of the “Good ol’ boys” in Liberal circles,  has.

She’s on the Board of Cameco.   Since her retirement from politics, and now sitting on a number of corporate boards, she’s raking in a lot.  From Cameco ALONE, in the million dollar range.

Why was she attractive to the Cameco Board?   – – maybe her INFLUENCE in the Liberal Party?

You may recall that the Uranium Producers in the World formed an alliance with respect to Climate Change.  They (Canada) AGREED to an agenda to promote Nuclear as green solution to Climate Change.   Russia is partner,  Australia, too, I think.  Countries with uranium – – the U.S.?  I don’t know.   Anyhow, that was the Canadian position at the Bonn Germany Round of international negotiations  (incorrectly identified as the Copenhagan round by a parliamentary secretary).

It will not have changed, because too many people are making too much money through public subsidization.  Look at the corporate history – – WHO has invested in the development of SMR’s?   Universities (green-washing).  Westinghouse. Big corporates.  (I haven’t updated my info base.)

Seamus O’Regan got hammered for the interview, through the online Comments.  HOWEVER, dropping the word re nuke from the Throne Speech would have been a REACTION to the hammering.  That does not mean they are not pursuing nuclear.  They simply move it out of the public spotlight.  Carry on under-ground, so to speak.

The NATURAL RESOURCES MINISTERS from various provinces, I don’t know if all,  have been commandeered for the job of promoting nuclear.  They form a cohesive unit with support staff.  Their JOB is to SELL NATURAL RESOURCES.   There is a large divide between Departments of Environment and Natural Resources.

Anyhow,  documentation below.  I am very sorry – – I don’t have time to edit.   Skim it,  you’ll get the idea.  If corruption is not addressed in our actions,  we are “bleating sheep”.

Bless you all and thank-you all.   /Sandra

EXCERPTED FROM:

2019-05-25 Input to Govt, Bill C-69 will exempt Small Modular Reactors and other nuclear/uranium reactors from impact assessment.Jul202019

TO:  Govt of Canada,  Impact Assessment Regulations (link not valid),  Consultation on the proposed Project List

Bill C-69 will exempt Small Modular Reactors and other nuclear/uranium reactors from impact assessment.

The elephant in the room is CORRUPTION.   You have to deal with it.

It did not make sense that the Liberal Govt would throw weight behind nuclear energy as a response to climate change (2018).    If you know the cross-Canada history in the last decade of the nuclear/uranium industry, no political party would champion nuclear.

When things don’t make sense, try “follow the money”.  Cameco, nuclear/uranium)

From 2013 to 2014 Key Executive Compensation rose by 43% (from $10 million to $15 million), at a time when their share value had been in uninterrupted decline since February, 2011.   . . .

Today’s (2018) share value is down by 80% over its June 2007 high.

And the CRA is after it:  through off-shoring  The uranium producer estimates it has avoided declaring $4.9-billion in Canadian income, saving it $1.4-billion in taxes, over the last 10 years.

WHY?  would  Bill C-69 want to exempt Small Modular Reactors and other nuclear/uranium reactors from impact assessment?  

It’s explained in an email I sent to Minister McKenna, posted on my blog (http://sandrafinley.ca/?p=20712  ).   Please go to the posting for the first part of the email.

SECOND HALF OF THE EMAIL (the corruption):    

When a population fights a reactor because it will enslave them to very expensive electricity, at the cost of investing in alternatives, and

then turns around to fight the transportation of (the industry’s estimate in 2009, more now) 20,000 truckloads of accumulated high level radioactive waste, you may, as I did, come to view the nuclear industry as a Ponzi scheme.  Someone gets left holding the bag, at the end.   “Someone” is the good old, not-yet-angry-enough citizen.

It’s pretty simple:   a business needs a revenue stream to cover its costs.  The industry has old reactors in Ontario;  billions of dollars are being spent to extend their lives.   Costs go onto electricity bills.

The last “new” reactor began construction in July 1985,  more than three decades ago.

No new reactors means no new revenue streams to replace the old ones.

BUT,  simultaneously, the industry has (by its own estimates in 2009, more now) upwards of $24 billion for the cost of building a Repository for its accumulated waste.  That estimate does not include the cost of transporting all the waste to the site. (Some years ago, the industry was required to start putting money into a fund to address those eventual costs.  It has so far collected a small portion of the necessary money.)

There’s the Ponzi:

Without new reactors they don’t have a replacement revenue stream.  So, dwindling cash in-flow.  Large out-flows.  How are they going to pay the cost of accumulated waste disposal, an estimated $30 billion dollars?   What are the existing debt-loads?  There are contaminated sites to be cleaned up, at large expense.  There isn’t one insurance company willing to sell insurance to them.    A new reactor requires capital investment.  But investors don’t line up when the potential for returns looks lousy.

No new reactors?  . . . in a Ponzi, the last guy to buy in (Ontario?) ends up footing the bill.   Most of the other provinces have said. “It’s not going to be us.”

UNLESS  . . .  unless the industry has access to the public purse to foot the bills, they’re hooped.  Seems to me.

The Liberals appear to be gambling that they can use spin doctors and count on ignorant voters.  I don’t think we are that gullible.

(The first part of the letter to Minister McKenna (at (http://sandrafinley.ca/?p=20712  ) has

  1. the record, by province, of “It’s not going to be us.”  And
  2. sources for the following “Big push” by the Govt )

So WHY the big push, by the Trudeau Government, to commit Canada to nuclear reactors and to have other countries adopt them as a (false) answer to climate change?   . . .   follow the money.

When I read the words of Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr’s parliamentary secretary,

we have ensured that nuclear energy will have its place,

I went to Cameco’s website.  (If you don’t know Cameco, see Wikipedia)

Who are the current Executive and Board members?    https://www.cameco.com/about/board-of-directors 

 No longer:  Nancy Hopkins, Saskatoon corporate lawyer who had been on the Cameco Board since 1992, had Cameco shares and options worth $1,001,871 in 2008;  $1,843,273 in 2009.

The fight over the North Sask River reactor was in 2009.  As mentioned, the reactor was defeated.  Not good news for Cameco’s share value.

The Fukishima nuclear reactor disaster was in March 2011, seven years ago.  Cameco shares fell, but had been falling.  The high was in mid-June, 2007,  $59.46 per share.  The next high, mid-Feb 2011, $41.34.   Down to $18.41 by the end of 2011;  no recovery – – trading around $12.00  in mid-March, 2018.   Today’s share value is down by 80% over its June 2007 high.

If Nancy did not unload her shares, the value of her portfolio investment in Cameco has plummeted.  The same is true for other Executive members of Cameco.  But investment in Cameco shares is only part of the money.

What does the compensation look like for Cameco Executives?  What’s at stake for them, or for the aspiring executives to succeed them, if the industry can’t bring new reactors on-stream?  It will be compensation + perks + share value + intangibles of being on the Board (influence, connections).

(Ref, chart from:  (link no longer valid)

 

Key Executive Compensation

    2012

10,234,004

    2013

10,497,424

    2014

15,062,235

     2015

14,617,837

     2016

14,446,905

Timothy S. Gitzel/President and Chief Executive Officer 4,772,534 4,720,325 5,099,097 5,917,347 5,924,134

 

Grant E. Isaac/Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer 1,818,511 1,760,075 2,791,418 2,076,531 2,558,113

 

Robert Steane/Senior Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer 2,396,780 2,223,135 2,591,850 3,370,965 2,624,740

 

Alice Wong/Senior Vice-President and Chief Corporate Officer 1,246,179 1,172,529 2,198,320 1,552,552 1,679,768

 

Sean Quinn/Senior Vice-President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary 621,360 2,381,550 1,700,442 1,660,150

 

These people are in the 1%, having been given access to a public resource, once owned by a Crown Corporation.   From 2013 to 2014 Key Executive Compensation rose by 43% (from $10 million to $15 million), at a time when their share value had been in uninterrupted decline since February, 2011.   And just after more hot water from the CRA .)

Grant Isaac was into his fourth year with Cameco (Chief Financial Officer), Nancy Hopkins, corporate lawyer, her 21st year on the Board, when the CRA went after Cameco, over offshore shell companies:

The uranium producer estimates it has avoided declaring $4.9-billion in Canadian income, saving it $1.4-billion in taxes, over the last 10 years.

2013-05-01   Cameco’s $800-million tax battle, Globe & Mail   (posted on my blog)

(Update:  2017-08-17 Cameco wins PROCEDURAL victory in offshore ‘transfer pricing’ tax battle, (not the end of the case)  Financial Post)

Citizens were pretty pissed.  We pay taxes, they don’t.  That’s not all.  Intolerable conflicts-of-interest:

Nancy served as a Director on the Board of Governors of the University of Saskatchewan from 2005-2013, serving as the Chair of the Board in the last three years. Nancy also sat on the Board of Cameco Corporation (CCO on the TSX; CCJ on the NYSE) for 24 years, and, in that time, chaired the Compensation Committee, the Audit Committee, and the Governance Committee. (search www.mcdougallgauley.com for full bio)

During Nancy’s time as Chair of the University Board of Governors, the Provincial Government of Brad Wall transferred between $30 and $47 million to the University EAR-MARKED for the nuclear industry.    (Mar 02, 2011 http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/sask-spending-30m-on-nuclear-research-centre-1.987996 .  Nancy did not protect University autonomy by insisting that public funding of the University has to be “no strings attached”.  Further:

Grant Isaac was Dean of the Edwards School of Business at the U of S.   In July, 2009, Cameco Corp hired him; in 2011 he became Senior Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer.   In January 2013, Grant was appointed by the Government to the Board of Governors of the University.

(I met with Grant when he was still Dean of the Business School, to understand whether what is taught in Economics classes is still the same as it was when I was a student there, (1967-71).   Grossly deficient economic indicators, GDP, the ability of corporations to offload costs to the public to pay, etc..   The answer was “yes”.   Grant put it this way:   “If there was a way to change it, it would have been done by now.”   So, no problem teaching junk to students.   That was in 2008 when the faculty was still on strike.  Grant went to Cameco in summer 2009.  Would he have been selected if he had been active in seeking changes to a flawed economic system that is taking the planet to the brink?

(INSERT, UPDATE:  OTHER universities ARE doing something:   2018-03-21     Hallelujah! GDAE Textbooks for Economics Courses (Tufts University)

There are no laws in Saskatchewan to prohibit corporate (or union) donations to political parties.  (FEDERAL Law prohibits it.  I don’t know how many Provincial Govts prohibit corporate donations.)

In  2009, the President of the University, Peter McKinnon, was hosted at Cameco’s fly-in fishing lodge,  Yalowega Lake, in northern Saskatchewan.   The Lodge has its own gourmet chef.   https://briarpatchmagazine.com/articles/view/follow-the-yellowcake-road.

McKinnon (who was dean of the Law School, before becoming President of the U) attacked those who challenged Nancy Hopkins’ conflict-of-interest (heavily invested in Cameco, Chair of the U Board of Governors, involved in decisions re allocation of university priorities and Government funding for the nuclear industry).  He angrily declared that there was no conflict-of-interest.

So,  WHO ELSE is on the Board?  And does it have any bearing on my question:

WHY the big push, by the Trudeau Government, to commit Canada to nuclear reactors?  It doesn’t make sense – – the level of resistance right across the country is high, and known.   The last “new” reactor began construction 30+ years ago.   To go into international negotiations and try to foist nuclear energy on other countries, when your own citizens won’t tolerate it, only undermines the integrity of Canadian business.    What’s up? 

Anne McLellan?   She was brought onto the Cameco Board in 2006.  You may recall Anne – – for years, the only federal Liberal elected in the West (Edmonton).   Served 4 terms.  She was Federal Minister of Justice, of Health, of Natural Resources, Deputy Prime Minister, , ,  under Paul Martin and Jean Chretien.

A Liberal of influence.  Was awarded an Order of Canada.   After politics she went on corporate boards.   She earns a million dollars a year from her Cameco board work alone.  I assume there’s a reason why she was called to the Board of Cameco.

On February 11, 2016, as Natural Resources Minister, Carr purchased seven tickets to a NHL game featuring the Winnipeg Jets versus the Boston Bruins. His guests included the energy ministers . . . .

Carr represents the riding of Winnipeg South Centre,   https://www.ourcommons.ca/Parliamentarians/en/members/Jim-Carr(89059).

Kim Rudd, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Natural Resources, Jim Carr, from Cobourg, represents the Ontario riding of  Northumberland—Peterborough South

Her speech to the Canadian Nuclear Association on February 22, 2018:

. . .meeting again in Copenhagen in May (mistake – not the Copenhapen round, the Bonn Germany meetings) and we have ensured that nuclear energy will have its place in a broad, high-level discussion on a global transition to a low-carbon economy,”

Jerri Rudd,  “spokesperson for Natural Resources Canada”,  “Nuclear energy is an important part of Canada’s current clean energy basket and will continue to play a key role in achieving the country’s low-carbon future.”

Who is Kim Rudd?  see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jerri_Southcott    

 

Anyhow, there you go.   When I followed the money, on the thing that didn’t make sense to me – – if I know the list of provinces that have fought against nuclear and won – – the extent of the dedicated “no to nuclear“  (for good sound economic reasons – – as a tax-payer and consumer, I’m getting screwed), surely the Liberal Party knows the same.   I conclude it is not the interests of Canadians that are being served.   Yet again.   Corruption trumps.

For your consideration, Minister McKenna.

For your sake, for the sake of  Tax-payers’ wallets, for the sake of democracy and integrity, I wish it was otherwise.

Best regards,  Sandra Finley

= = = = = =

Bill C-69 will exempt Small Modular Reactors and other nuclear/uranium reactors from impact assessment.   For whose benefit? 

The elephant in the room is CORRUPTION.   You have to deal with it.

= = = = = =

ALSO A PART OF “CORRUPTION”.  

Real-life examples of the propaganda you will receive from the industry.    From a presentation by the industry to the American National Academy of Science (NAS), in Saskatoon. The state of Virginia was under petition to lift its 30-year moratorium on uranium/nuclear.  The NAS came to Saskatchewan to collect information on first-hand experience with uranium/nuclear.

I sent the documentation of the propaganda, in support of what Grand Chief Patrick Madahbee was saying.

2018-04-23 Nuclear: In support of Grand Chief Patrick Madahbee, email to CBC (The Current).    http://sandrafinley.ca/?p=20981

= = = = = =

Corruption is a serious issue in Canada.   There are million-dollar salaries and perks to keep in place.  Some MP’s are very well rewarded upon retirement, for Good Service to Industry.  Bill C-69, no Impact Assessment for nuclear?  Ya gotta be kidding.

Submitted, with hope of a vote for the Public Interest.

Sandra Finley

 

 

Sep 222020
 

From: Sandra Finley
To: ‘victoria@cbc.ca’

Hi Gregor and crew,

John Horgan is setting a fine example.

He’s teaching an important lesson to young people.

How the Real World works.

 

The Law applies to you and to me.

We will be fined or sent to jail for serious transgressions.

And maybe just for small ones.

 

If you get yourself elected

The Law?  . . . does not apply to you

Responsibility to lead by example?

Why?

Teach Democracy to the young?

Why?

It’s clear enough that People Forget.

George Orwell described it well in Animal Farm

Zombie citizens.  Meek media.

Maybe a few mumblings.

Excerpted from my blog:

SIGNIFICANCE OF THE RULE OF LAW

The rule of law means that the law is above everyone and it applies to everyone. Whether governors or governed, rulers or ruled, no one is above the law, no one is exempted from the law, and no one can grant exemption to the application of the law.

The rules must apply to those who lay them down and those who apply them – that is, to the government as well as the governed.  Nobody has the power to grant exceptions.

All persons, regardless of wealth, social status, or the political power wielded by them, are to be treated the same before the law.

We are in big trouble if the laws do not apply to those who govern.

Many of us do not appreciate the significance of  The Rule of Law.  We take it for granted.

We don’t stop to think what it would be like if we DO NOT HAVE the rule of law.

We don’t stop to think about WHAT UNDERMINES the rule of law? . . .  If people see that the law applies to them, but not to rich people, they grow to hold the law in disdain.

Unequal application of the law breaks down the rule of law.  The response then, of those who govern, is to invoke martial law, a police state, because people become unruly.

People comply with the law if they see that is it fair and equally applied.  You can have a measure of PEACE in the community if the Rule of Law is upheld.

People must, of course, KNOW WHAT THE LAW IS, if the rule of law is to be upheld.

We are in big trouble if we are ignorant, because then we are disempowered and at the mercy of people who are not to be trusted.

We do not have the luxury of being ignorant, and we do not have the luxury of being complacent.

– – – – –

A more complete package would include Hannah Arendt’s understanding of THE BANALITY OF EVIL.   No one “intended” the outcome.  It happens over time through the humdrum.  “Banal” is an almost obsolete word.  It needs to be resurrected!  Along with knowledge of how Democracy works.

Banal – – so lacking in originality as to be obvious and boring.

/Sandra Finley

Sep 082020
 

Hey!  Some good news.    /Sandra

Kim writes:

This Greenpeace test to detect GM crops is an important breakthrough that should help keep Bayer/Monsanto and other ag biotech companies in check.

htt ZZ  ps://ww ZZ w.green ZZ  peace  ZZ dot org/  ZZ  eu-unit/issues/nature-food/4102/  ZZ  first-open-source-detection-test-for-a-gene-edited-gm-crop-2/   

(SORRY!  To view the posting, copy the URL and then remove the spaces and ZZ’s.  Replace “dot” with an actual dot.   I hope this will be a temporary measure. I still experience inability to make postings accessible.  I post but you can’t view.  I am treading lightly with URL’s until things are stabilized.  URL’s  seemed to be a trigger for throwing things off.     /S)

 

Aug 232020
 

From: Sandra Finley
To: thesundayedition  cbc.ca; Melanie Simms
Subject: re Secrets about Salaries. Cultural taboos. Subversion.

Dear Kevin Sylvester and Melanie Simms,

(I was raised in small-c conservative rural farm culture; graduated from a College of Commerce a long time ago.  I did not intend to become an activist, a subversive as you name it.  An obvious need emerged, also a long time ago.)

Cultural taboos.  Subversion.  (Secrets about Salaries.)   In response to your discussion.

Cultural taboos protect the interests of those who benefit from the wealth of a country and its workers.

Interesting – your discussion stopped short of questioning, for example, the salaries of the executive class.

Re covid discussions about who gets paid and who doesn’t, who contributes and who doesn’t:   I have not heard or seen anything about the class of people who offshore their money to avoid taxation.   We are not, as proclaimed, “All in this together”.

Why does the discussion have the cheek to climb up the ladder into the lower ranks of management and administration (the courtiers?) and then stop short.  Maybe a plexiglass ceiling?   Maybe out of deference:  we worship money?   The more you have, the more timid we are in your presence?

Speaking to the subversive action, the revolutionary:  our tongues are more free, our actions less inhibited, the less fearful we are.   Timidity doesn’t work.

Two anecdotes that might be helpful to your deliberations.  I will spare you more.

  1. I used the example of an imperilled water supply to ask Canadian philosopher John Ralston Saul why, when the public needs “educated persons of influence” (water scientists in this case) to speak up on an important public issue, the public is lucky to find one scientist who will open their mouth.  This was in the University city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  Lots of government and university water scientists.  Used to be home to the National Water Research Institute.

Ralston Saul said (not his precise words) the educated class have worked hard to get to where they are.  They have entered the class of The Respectables.

The taboo in Canada, respectable people do not speak out in public or protest in the streets, was reinforced during Stephen Harper’s 2010 G-20 and G-8 meetings.  Protestors were rounded up and thrown in jail in numbers never before seen in Canada, quite brutally, without cause.  Most were detained to be released the next day without charge.  Creates Fear.  Keeps mouths shut.  Public money flowed into Conservative constituencies.  Corruption.  The bill to Canadians was close to a billion dollars for the few-days G-20, G-8 summit.  Who benefitted? 

 

  1. A single-parent cousin of mine worked for a ScotiaBank branch in Calgary.  She complained that it was month-end and she had to work overtime, breaking a visit we’d planned.  I replied with the bright-side:  she’d be paid time-and-a half.   She said no.

Later I phoned ScotiaBank headquarters (Toronto) and asked how it was that they could pay the CEO $3.5 million, while denying overtime pay to the frontline workers who made it possible for the CEO to be grossly overpaid?  The reply was oh no, we have rules – – the overtime has to be paid.  My reply:  you know that branch managers work their way up the corporate ladder according to the performance data of the branch.   There’s a built-in incentive not to pay overtime.

Well, it “has to” be — “the CEO will be seen as inferior if he is not paid in line with the salaries of the other CEOs in the banking industry.”  Bull-shit.

Women whose families are financially dependent on them are the majority workers.  Who among them is going to stand up and speak out if they aren’t paid fairly?  Fear of losing the job, and chances for promotion. // Ambition (branch manager) trumps ethical.  // Systemic problems are not addressed.  Common sense evaporates, conveniently.

Who benefits?   The branch manager, the CEO, the investors.  Often the investors include large pension funds, for example of teachers’ unions. All are Beneficiaries of the wealth that comes from unfair treatment (exploitation) of the women – – a resource of the country.

So what about that subversion? . . . Yes, fight the taboos.  Open up.  Ask your questions about salaries.  How much do you get paid?  Timidity doesn’t work.  Eat some spinach (Pop-Eye).  Put some iron in your spine.

Thanks for the programme.

/Sandra Finley

Aug 202020
 

Glen Assoun was wrongfully convicted of murder.  He spent close to 17 years in prison.  The podcast Dead Wrong is a careful and troubling documentation of the miscarriage of justice.

I speak to one aspect of the remedy.  I am afraid it will not be considered, even though it is one root of the problem.

Tim Bousquet and his colleagues at the Halifax Examiner created the podcast.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – 

From: Sandra Finley  (some edits)
Subject: re wrongfully convicted. Podcast Dead Wrong

Hello Tim Bousquet,

I have mailed a cheque to the Halifax Examiner today.

Prompted by podcast re Brenda Way’s murder & the wrongful conviction of Glen Assoun.

After hearing on today’s episode (CBC, The Current, 2020-08-20) the names of judges on the Appeal panel, I am impelled to write.   Three points:

  • I want your journalism to help bring about change.
  • However, If a major root of a problem is not effectively eradicated, the remedies will be a bandaid that PERMITS the situation.   Typically in Canada our remedies are bandaids.
  • In general, not only in justice, a major root problem in Apparent Incompetence, that in the end leaves us with corrupted institutions is old friends and long term relationships.  We are human beings.

In the specific “for example”, Suzanne Hood, the judge who presided over the murder trial, and Jill Hamilton, one of 3 justices on the NS Court of Appeal panel are well-known to each other, for more than 40 years.  They can’t help but be friends, I would think.  They are both good, competent, community-minded people;  40 years in the same community (Hfx-Dartmouth);  shared values; the same career paths, many of the same friends, acquaintances and life experiences.  They probably know something of how personal challenges (trials and tribulations that are part of people’s lives) have been handled.  That’s the stuff of which our Beliefs about a person are formed.

The phrase they did not hear (the innocence of Glen Assoun) was repeated in the podcast.

Yes, that is to be expectedPeople Do Not Hear What They Do Not Want to Hear.  Simple as that.   Brain research using the most powerful of MRIs shows what happens when information that confronts our “deeply held beliefs” enters our heads;  it is routed to circumvent rational processing.  We literally do not hear challenging information – – in one ear and out the other, as the old adage says.   Do you want to hear that persons well-known to you, respected, that the system you want to believe in – – you are part of it, has delivered a wrongful conviction?  No.  You are predisposed to support and have confidence that the persons you know would have done good work.  Arguably, they COULD not hear 

(If I personally know a person, it is more difficult  to do something that is openly critical of them.  Easier if I don’t know them.)

One major root of the problem –why  justice was not delivered:

The legal community in N.S., and in Canada is relatively small.  Most lawyers, prosecutors, judges, profs, the directors and players in various legal-related institutions, many Politicians, are graduates of the same 24 law schools.  Many relationships in the tightly-knit legal community go back to student days.  Their grapevines pulsate through strands inter-woven across the country.   Those grapevines predate electronic communications by a couple of centuries.  It is an old boys n’ girls network.  Participants form strong bonds.

There is a reason why the justice system in Canada is static, relatively unchanging in the face of need for substantial overhaul.  Not even repeated blunt demands for change from former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada, Beverley McLachlin, had much effect.   No, the system is not going to change itself dramatically.  There are too many strong bonds amongst the players, rooted in the status quo.  In too many cases they cannot hear, let alone deliver.  It may be impossible just because they are human beings.

The STRUCTURE has to be re-configured, in order for justice to claim its place.   The natural bonds in the existing structure have to be neutralized.  There is some movement along those lines, but not enough, and not timely.

I remember Hannah Arendt’s phrase from the Adolf Eichmann trial (1961) and her subsequent book – – the banality of evil.    It is not evil in the beginning.  It just has the potential to become evil.  It is well-documented that in Germany, in the lead-up to WW2 the justice system was among the first to capitulate, to become collaborative (enablers) by issuing decisions that wrongfully convicted.   (I am not suggesting that this statement applies to the justice system in Canada today.)

We are repelled by what happened in Nazi Germany.  But Arendt came away with understanding.  Your podcast Dead Wrong in its depth provides a base for attempting to gain better understanding.

In this example, the decisions to convict, to uphold the conviction under appeal, and to deny appeal to the highest court, enabled the evil that was happening on streets in Halifax-Dartmouth to continue, unchecked.  And,  people in our institutions were not held to account.  Not until today.  Holding to account  is the job of the media and citizen.  We too enabled the evil that was happening on streets in Halifax-Dartmouth AND elsewhere in Canada, as we know well from “murdered and missing”.  Too many people did not care enough about the lives of the prostitutes, what’s happening in the streets, to stand up and speak out.

The police, the prosecutors, the judges, did not INTEND to be collaborators with the evil on the street, nor did we;  the opposite would be true.  Such is the banality of evil.  The everyday gets in the way.

I want remedies for Canadian institutions to include built-in safeguards, firewalls, to protect and promote the integrity of OPERATIONS.  No more bandaids.

Because it is natural for human beings to bond with each other (a good thing and a bad thing), the Justice System cannot be entrusted to a cohort of law school graduates, as it is today.  They did not hear, they can not hear, they will not hear – – in too many cases (not in all cases).  Not because they are bad or incompetent or uncaring.  Isolated and insulated, maybe.  Although I think that if a judge has presided over many trials, they will likely have been well exposed to sad, tragic, dysfunctional lives.

I am thankful for your fine JOURNALISM!  Real and needed stuff.

/Sandra Finley

 

 

Aug 142020
 

(Organization Name) does NOT FACTOR THE ROLE OF CORRUPTION into its campaigns.

You can bleat all you want, nothing changes if corruption is not addressed. See below, a list of compelling statements by seven “thinkers of the day”. A hundred more examples could be added.

The “research” on vaccines that is done in Canadian universities and other institutions, that is “government funded” is done through public-private-partnerships, through collaboration agreements. Researchers are affected. The age-old adage applies: he who pays the piper calls the tune. If you believe it’s not the case, I’d say you are naive; read the statements by the seven thinkers, below.

I recently emailed CBC Radio, The House, unapologetic promoters of mandatory covid vaccination (you can’t call it journalism).

I will be joining those who do not sign up for a covid vaccination.
I have followed the vaccine question for at least 15 years.

It has been announced that Canada has signed up with Pfizer and Moderna. Are you afraid to ask the Minister of Public Procurement, or the medical authorities, about contracting with a company that has a decades-long public record of big-time corruption?

Let me tell ONE Pfizer story to make the point:

In 2007 the news of the criminal charges against Pfizer was little heard in western countries. It was eclipsed by a same-day scare-story about tuberculosis – – the Globe & Mail carried the latter, for example. Not the former.

(INSERT, my venting!  Manipulation of the media by the unethical (“communications specialists” / propagandists) is often done this way – bury the corporate name and the unsavory real story with a sometimes-fraudulent press release that diverts attention and sets off another round of fear-driven behavior.  Some media and their followers, irrational flocks of sheep, embrace the reassurances offered and the products – –  Without Questioning the conflicts-of-interest, the universities that are in bed with big pharma, the experts spawned in a very conflicted “educational” environment, the long-standing, well-known public record of a very corrupt and corrupt-ING industry.  The mantra trust us is for sheep and lemmings.  . . .  Continuing with the email!)

In 2009 there was an out-of-court settlement:
PFIZER TO PAY £50m ($75 million) AFTER DEATHS OF NIGERIAN CHILDREN IN DRUG TRIAL EXPERIMENT.

Out-of-court settlements come with a gag order. Convenient? But not for the public record.

The book and movie, “The Constant Gardener”, is based on what PFIZER did to the Nigerian children, during the chaos and confusion of a meningitis outbreak. Pfizer tested their new “blockbuster” drug Travon on human guinea pigs. Illegally, using trickery; deadly. In a different context it would be called manslaughter.

Pfizer is ruthless in the pursuit of money. You will know the long list of outrages brought by the pharmaceutical industry. They are now in the white-washing business, “partnering” with organizations and institutions to sanitize their image. But everyone makes money.  The public purse is generous to the courtier class.

The corruption in the vaccine (pharmaceutical) industry appears to be immune to media scrutiny.

But good news (potentially):

The earlier talk of mandatory vaccination against covid SEEMS to have lessened. I suspect polling results play a role: the numbers of people who will not comply is too high.

You may remember what happened not too long ago when the Government of New Brunswick was going forward with a mandatory vaccine schedule for children, desired by Big Pharma. When confronted by the evidence of the dangers, risks, and inefficacies involved, the Legislature did not pass the legislation.

There are very good reasons for not making a potential covid vaccination mandatory.

What we can now expect is a “communications” plan to convince Canadians of the safety and efficacy of vaccines. The “new”. The campaign is already underway.

If it doesn’t work, scare tactics will be employed. Not science.

There is plenty of good science to guide us. It is not heard because of the “unholy alliances“.

= = = = = = =

PROBLEM:  THE (NAME of ORGANIZATION) DOES NOT FACTOR IN THE ROLE OF CORRUPTION.

= = = = = = =

THINKERS OF THE DAY

on the UNHOLY ALLIANCES between Government (public institutions) and Industry.

The statements are applicable to public institutions in general, not just “Government”.

(1) From John Kenneth Galbraith’s “The Economics of Innocent FraudTruth for our Time“, published in 2004

“… As the corporate interest moves to power in what was the public sector, it serves, predictably, the corporate interest. That is its purpose. …One obvious result has been well-justified doubt as to the quality of much present regulatory (and educational / research) effort. There is no question but that corporate influence extends to the regulators. … Needed is independent, honest, professionally competent regulation (persons) … This last must be recognized and countered. There is no alternative to effective supervision. …”

(2) John Ralston Saul, “Health Care at the End of the Twentieth Century”, 1999

“The Panel identified… serious concerns about the undermining of the scientific basis for risk regulation in Canada due to… the conflict of interest created by giving to regulatory (and training) agencies the mandates both to promote the development of agricultural technologies and to regulate it…”

Note: the ONLY people who get a job in the regulatory agencies are those who get trained by the University.

(3)  President Dwight Eisenhower’s prescient Words of Wisdom     

(http://sandrafinley.ca/blog/?p=980 

Right down to the involvement of the university, Eisenhower predicted the road ahead. His words motivate us to find our better selves.

EXCERPT:

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades.

In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government.

Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion,   the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers.

The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present

  • and is gravely to be regarded.

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific technological elite.

It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system — ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society.

(4) We have Justice Krever, Commission of Inquiry on the Blood System in Canada, 1996

“Industry can’t be regulated by government – and for environmental and health reasons they must be – if that government is in bed with them.”

(5) George Soros, “Open Society [Reforming Global Capitalism]”, 2000, publisher PublicAffairs. p. xi,

“… the greatest threat to freedom and democracy in the world today comes from the formation of unholy alliances between government (insert: public institutions) and business.”

(6) Jane Jacobs’ “Systems of Survival, the Moral Foundations of Commerce and Politics” sets forth a framework for understanding that the system of governance will succumb to corruption if we fail to appreciate the functional roles of two separately evolved sets of ethics, one for the commercial function in a society and the other for governance (guardianship). But,

“Societies need both commercial and guardian work … the two types are prone to corruption if they stray across either their functional or moral barriers.”

(7) Mae-Wan Ho, “Genetic engineering – Dream or Nightmare?”, 1998

You may not like this one, but it rings absolutely true for the me that worked with others to open up the debate on genetically-modified organisms. There are many postings about GMOs on my blog. There is important information collected by this network, still valid today, that documents some of the propaganda used by educated people, refuted by common sense about the real world and nature, that most people would understand.

To reassure us, they lie to us, and then treat us as idiots by insisting on things we all know are untrue. Not only does this prevent a reasonable debate from taking place, but it also creates a very unhealthy relationship between citizens and their elected representatives”. (and the “intellectuals” who train the regulators)

Aug 092020
 

– July 8, 2020

bill gates

Bill Gates is regretting things left undone. Gates is sorry he hasn’t done “more to call attention to the danger” of a pandemic.” In an interview, Gates said, “I feel terrible. The whole point of talking about it was that we could take action and minimize the damage.”

For his critics, rather than minimizing the damage, Gates has done too much to set a course of action having disastrous unanticipated consequences. Gates, the billionaire philanthropist, has become a supervillain.

Since April, over 500,000 people have signed a petition at whitehouse.gov calling for an investigation of the Gates Foundation for “medical malpractice and crimes against humanity.”

Admirers of Gates blame “anti-vaccine activists and conspiracy-minded posters” for spreading “misinformation” damaging to Bill Gates’s reputation. In May, one essay claimed to debunk the assertion that Gates plans to make South Africans early test subjects for a COVID-19 vaccine. A month later, the “myth” was revealed to be true. 

Gates has taken up the cause of global warming too. He is funding a mad geoengineering scheme at Harvard to partially block sunlight. Imagine setting in motion a “solution” that has the potential to destroy all life on earth. Gates’s hubris seems boundless.

You don’t need a conspiracy theory to explain Bill Gates’s transformation from entrepreneur to supervillain. Gates has always been a ruthless zealot. Yet when he was at Microsoft, his worst character flaws were held in check by the demands of running a competitive business and the necessity of meeting the needs of consumers. As a philanthropist, he is not disciplined by forces of the marketplace. Empowered by government coercion, there is nothing to keep him or us from his worst instincts.

Good Intentions Don’t Matter

Gates is ready to give away most of his vast fortune, in his words, to “coordinated global action” to prevent disease. You might give Gates high marks for his good intentions.

History is full of reasons why we should not trust those with good intentions. A common trope in movies and comics is the supervillain who is ready to sacrifice the well-being of many people to further a warped pursuit they see as noble.

In his book Capitalism and Freedom, Milton Friedman explained why “concentrated power is not rendered harmless by the good intentions of those who create it.” Friedman pointed to internal threats to freedom that are far more difficult to see than external threats:

“It is the internal threat coming from men of good intentions and good will who wish to reform us. Impatient with the slowness of persuasion and example to achieve the great social changes they envision, they are anxious to use the power of the state to achieve their ends and confident of their own ability to do so.”

When Gates the entrepreneur was wrong, he was held accountable by consumers and competitive forces. When Gates the philanthropist is wrong, politicians and academics will evaluate him by different criteria.

Gates at Microsoft

When Gates co-founded Microsoft with the late Paul Allen, he didn’t build Microsoft on good intentions. Paul Allen described “ruthlessness” as a character flaw of Gates. Gates routinely browbeat and denigrated those he disagreed with. Allen saw himself as the real innovator but valued Gates as a “sanity check” on his ideas. Allen and Gates needed each other to build Microsoft.

Others confirm Allen’s view of Gates. Ed Roberts has been called the father of the personal computer. James Wallace and Jim Erickson interviewed Roberts for their book Hard Drive: Bill Gates and the Making of the Microsoft Empire. Roberts recalls Gates being unyielding: “We got so we didn’t even invite him to meetings where we were trying to come up with a new software approach or something like that because he was impossible to deal with.”

Roberts believed, “Paul Allen was much more creative than Bill. Bill spent his whole time trying to be argumentative and not trying to come up with solutions. Paul was exactly the opposite.”

A Financial Review essay describes Allen “as an intuitive thinker who had a sixth sense about new products” while Gates “was the driven, clear-headed partner who turned Allen’s sometimes random ideas into successful products.”

Synergies between Gates’s and Allen’s differing leadership styles made for success. “Gates was explosive and confrontational while Allen…was thoughtful and empathetic.” Fights were typical: “The two argued frequently, often screaming at each other in front of employees. But the fights, colleagues said, frequently resulted in good business decisions.”

Why did the fights result in good decisions? On some level, Gates and Allen were willing to be led by consumer needs.

In his seminal leadership book Good to Great, Jim Collins found that the most successful leaders blended extraordinary “personal humility and professional will.” Gates lacked humility and may have been a miserable failure without Allen’s partnership.

The late Harold Geneen was CEO of ITT. In his instructive book, Ego is the Enemy, Ryan Holiday quotes Geneen who compared egoism to alcoholism: “The egotist does not stumble about, knocking things off his desk. He does not stammer or drool. No, instead, he becomes more and more arrogant, and some people, not knowing what is underneath such an attitude, mistake his arrogance for a sense of power and self confidence.”

A leader with an unbridled ego is a danger, Geneen explained:

“Whether in middle management or top management, unbridled personal egotism blinds a man to the realities around him; more and more he comes to live in a world of his own imagination; and because he sincerely believes he can do no wrong, he becomes a menace to the men and women who have to work under his direction.”

Holiday adds, “If ego is the voice that tells us we’re better than we really are, we can say ego inhibits true success by preventing a direct and honest connection to the world around us.”

Market forces reward businesses that maintain an ongoing “direct and honest connection” to the needs of consumers. Ludwig von Mises explained why consumers are the real “bosses:”

“[Consumers], by their buying and by their abstention from buying, decide who should own the capital and run the plants. They determine what should be produced and in what quantity and quality. Their attitudes result either in profit or in loss for the enterpriser. They make poor men rich and rich men poor.

The consumers are merciless. They never buy in order to benefit a less efficient producer and to protect him against the consequences of his failure to manage better. They want to be served as well as possible. And the working of the capitalist system forces the entrepreneur to obey the orders issued by the consumers.”

Gates the Philanthropist

Neil Ferguson of the Imperial College London had inordinate influence “advising national governments on pathogen outbreaks.” Ferguson listens to Gates, as his center receives “tens of millions of dollars in annual funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.”

The model Ferguson used to advise draconian lockdowns in response to COVID-19 has been thoroughly discredited both on theoretical and empirical grounds. To err is to be human, but this was not Ferguson’s first disastrous prediction. As AIER president Edward Peter Stringham points out, “Ferguson rose to fame in 2005 when he predicted that up to 200 million people could be killed from the bird flu.” The actual number of deaths was 50.

Gates, the businessman, would have long ago cut off Ferguson. No successful entrepreneur insists on partnering with a dismal failure. Yet for Gates, Ferguson’s performance as an epidemiologist didn’t seem to matter. What matters to Gates is that Ferguson’s view of the world is aligned with his own. Both support quarantining healthy people without regard to the human and economic cost.

Bill Gates has enjoyed a partnership with Dr. Anthony Fauci. Of course, it is natural to partner with those who share your worldview. Problems arise when a partnership leads to the use of the coercive arm of government to implement what you believe is your superior vision.

In his April blog post on COVID-19 vaccine development, Gate explains how a new rushed to market COVID-19 vaccine is likely to be a RNA vaccine. With an RNA vaccine, “rather than injecting a pathogen’s antigen into your body, you instead give the body the genetic code needed to produce that antigen itself.” Gates admits the process is risky. “It’s a bit like building your computer system and your first piece of software at the same time.”

Rushed vaccines have unique safety concerns, and RNA vaccines deserve heightened scrutiny. Gates admits the vaccine may not be both safe and effective:

 “If we were designing the perfect vaccine, we’d want it to be completely safe and 100 percent effective. It should be a single dose that gives you lifelong protection, and it should be easy to store and transport. I hope the COVID-19 vaccine has all of those qualities, but given the timeline we’re on, it may not.”

Heightening potential risks, vaccines are shielded from liability when they turn out to be unsafe. Nobody is held accountable for the consequences of taking shortcuts in the development process.

A COVID-19 vaccine has not even arrived and already some doctors are advocating for compulsory vaccination. Gates himself says, “We need to manufacture and distribute at least 7 billion doses of the vaccine.” With polls showing only 50% of the population planning on taking a COVID-19 vaccine, presumably, Gates and vaccine manufactures are banking on the government making the vaccine mandatory.

Gates is now actively stoking the fires of fear. He warns that this fall “COVID-19 will be back in big numbers, if we don’t restrain our behavior more than it looks like we are right at the moment.” He complained that we’re not tough enough “on contact tracing or enforcing quarantine.” In short, obey Gates and his favored “experts” or doom will befall us all.

Gates insists normalcy cannot return until “we have an almost perfect drug to treat COVID-19, or when almost every person on the planet has been vaccinated against coronavirus.” Yet, death rates from the COVID-19 virus are falling. Without a deadly virus it is hard to sell a potentially dangerous vaccine.

Nobel laureate Michael Levitt repeatedly warned that the doomsday exponential models, such as Ferguson’s, were wrong. Instead of examining Levitt’s analysis, Levitt received only “abuse” from other scientists. You need to “stop talking like that,” he was told. Another Nobel laureate, Saul Perlmutter, observed the “tendency to circle the wagons and hide all the conversations that need to happen.”

Entrepreneurs don’t hide conversations that need to happen; it’s bad for business. Those with a one-track agenda seek to maintain control by suppressing conversation of divergent viewpoints.

I will leave it to others to parse Gates’ philanthropic motives. His good intentions don’t matter. What matters is that Gates has access to world leaders who have coercive power. Gates, undisciplined by consumers or business partners, will make errors. Given his character flaws, Gates is likely to ignore and not learn from his mistakes.

Supervillains coerce and harm. Successful entrepreneurs serve and enrich humanity. Gates should return to his entrepreneurial roots.

Barry Brownstein

Barry Brownstein

Barry Brownstein is professor emeritus of economics and leadership at the University of Baltimore. He is senior contributor at Intellectual Takeout and the author of The Inner-Work of Leadership.

Aug 092020
 

From: Sandra Finley
Sent: August 8, 2020
To: The House at CBC.CA radio
Subject: Will I be joining those who don’t sign up for a covid vaccination?

Dear Chris Hall (host of The House),

I will be joining those who do not sign up for a covid vaccination.

I have followed the vaccine question for at least 15 years.

It has been announced that Canada has signed up with Pfizer and Moderna.  Are you afraid to ask the Minister of Public Procurement, or the medical authorities, about contracting with a company that has a decades-long public record of big-time corruption?

One Pfizer story to make the point:  In 2007 the news of the criminal charges against Pfizer was little heard in western countries.  It was eclipsed by a same-day scare-story about tuberculosis – – the Globe & Mail carried the latter, for example.  Not the former.

The criminal charges were initiated by the Government of Nigeria.

In 2009 there was an out-of-court settlement.

PFIZER TO PAY £50m ($75 million) AFTER DEATHS OF NIGERIAN CHILDREN IN DRUG TRIAL EXPERIMENT,  2009-04-06  The Independent (UK newspaper) headline.

Out-of-court settlements come with a gag order.  Convenient?  But not for the public record.

The book and movie, “The Constant Gardener”,  is based on what Pfizer did to the Nigerian children, during the chaos and confusion of a meningitis outbreak.  Pfizer tested their new “blockbuster” drug Travon, on human guinea pigs.  Illegally, using trickery; deadly.  In a different context it would be called manslaughter or murder.

Pfizer is ruthless in the pursuit of money.  You will know the long list of outrages brought by the pharmaceutical industry.  They are now in the white-washing business, “partnering” with organizations and institutions to sanitize their image.

The corruption in the vaccine (pharmaceutical) industry appears to be immune to media scrutiny.   But good news (potentially).

The earlier talk of mandatory vaccination against covid has been dropped.  I suspect polling results played a role:  the numbers of people who will not comply is too high.

You may remember what happened not too long ago when the Government of New Brunswick was going forward with a mandatory vaccine schedule for children, desired by Big Pharma.  When confronted by the evidence of the dangers, risks, and inefficacies involved, the Legislature did not pass the legislation.

There are very good reasons for not making a potential covid vaccination mandatory.

What we can now expect is a “communications” plan to convince Canadians of the safety and efficacy of vaccines.  The “new”.   The campaign is already underway.

If it doesn’t work, scare tactics will be employed.

Sincerely,

Sandra Finley

(contact info)

 

 

Jul 042020
 

I like to be healthy;  I believe that what I eat affects the health of my body.

I made some ginger molasses cookies that I did not like;  I wanted something more like a “ginger snap”, so bought some, without paying attention to where (not local) and what they were made from.

The outcome of which was the following note to the owner of the food store:

The “GLUTEN FREE” banner is replacing the “organic” on food products.

It distracts consumers from what the product is made with.

MI-DEL Ginger Snaps (Panos Brands, New Jersey).

Canola oil.   . . .  The first GMO crop, Monsanto seed, engineered so it can survive spraying by Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup.  Other chemical companies followed with their versions of same.  Patented seed.  Vast prairie acreages, blanket spraying of crops.  Monoculture.  Lots of cancer.

Decades of resistance, the March Against Monsanto started by young mothers who wanted alternatives for their children, court cases,  the selling off of Monsanto products to Bayer (Germany) because of public opposition to all that the name “Monsanto” represents.

What’s the market for canola oil?   A large part is as a cheap oil for making french fries – – fast food restaurants, etc.    Basically high volume, industrial food production.

MI-DEL cookies might be “GLUTEN FREE” (the only choice of a ginger snap on the shelf) and in a natural foods grocery store.  They are made with GMO canola oil (have a look – – the canola oil is not labeled “organic” and it would not be – – over 90% of the canola grown in the U.S. is GMO (Canadian figures will be as high, or higher).  And the non-GMO canola seed is heavily contaminated with the GMO stuff – – you cannot visually distinguish between the two.

GMO crop production means heavy chemical applications, in addition to GMO status.  We cannot continue to poison the planet, as we are doing.   Let not “GLUTEN FREE” distract people from what’s in the food they are eating.

 

 

Jul 032020
 

This is serious enough to post and share.

I am okay running the risk that I might be wrong.  The cost of being right and keeping my mouth shut is too high.

RE:  Revisions to Copyright Laws, simultaneously in a number of western countries, June 2019:  

The conundrum, without the detail:

Reference:  One year of EU copyright reformIs the Internet still working?,   20-04-2020

Comments:

Stefan G (European) says:

20/04/2020 at 17:30

I still have no idea how anyone could implement this (amended Copyright Law) into national law without building a massive surveillance structure. If every upload has to be checked for copyright BEFORE it becomes public then we need an automatic central service that checks everything that someone uploads or writes anywhere on the internet. And a structure like this will be abused for political reasons eventually. Just imagine what Orban could do with a system like this.

And who will offer the services to check the content?   Until now only the big American companies have good content detection software, Google invested billions in this technology. . . .

Perhaps the difficulties in posting to website, I am experiencing today in North America (details below), are the maturity of what is possible under revised Canadian Copyright Legislation and with Google’s technology.

Difficulties on-going.

I think the censorship is serious.  And probably legal under the Copyright reforms of 2019.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

ELABORATION,  Jun 24, 2020 (message to person in USA):

Last year,  Copyright Laws in Canada, Germany, the EU and other places were amended.  Maybe in the U.S., too.   In Europe there were large protests.

Today I continued problem-solving the difficulties in posting to my website – – trying to unravel what’s happening,  I came across this:

Canadian Revised Copyright Laws

anything that is deemed to maybe have a copyright connection can be blocked.

An attempt to post the link to the Canadian Govt page on Copyright Law uploads, but is not accessible to the public – – it goes to “Error, page not found”.  Same as anything related to RFK.   In the past,  always,  the posting of a link to a Government website, at the very least, has not been a problem.

INSERT:

2020-06-23: I can post this;  you can view it.  There are no URL’s in it.

Between June and September I continue problem-solving. Experiment. Successes and failures. Worst is when NO new postings are accessible, those with and without URL’s.  And regardless of content, even garbage isn’t accessible.

Back-end always works fine.  And I can edit existing postings.

Then success with innocuous content and innocuous URL’s.  Tip-toe along, don’t want to throw the trigger that puts all new postings into category “Error, page not found” (inaccessible to public viewing).

Work with Technical Support.

2020-09-11:  The posting of  Canadian Govt page on Copyright Law with URL’s  STILL goes to “Error, page not found.” You cannot view it.

Continuing with June 23rd:

So, I can’t make public a posting for the Govt of Canada Copyright Laws? (Small irony!)

What does the attempted posting contain?

  • the URL  (can’t put it here in this posting, or you won’t be able to access the posting – you’ll get an error message!  I rightly or wrongly conclude that the screening algorithms for copyright (anything that is deemed to maybe have a copyright connection can be blocked)  includes some combination of criteria that includes URL plus subject matter.  They appear to have developed  an invisible trigger that is inserted in copied information like the title of the article or a short quote.  The infected posting appears fine to me, on the back-end.  But any attempt to view the posting from the front-side is taken immediately to “Error, page not found.” )
  • the Title of the Act was on the posting –  Copyright Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-42)
  • there was this line of  information –  Act current to 2020-06-02 and last amended on 2019-06-17
  • also links (URL’s) to the text of the Act (can’t put those here either, or this posting will go to “Error”. )

The above were all copied from the Gov of Canada website.   There was nothing more in the posting.  As I say,  posted like that a viewer is immediately taken to “Error, page not found”, a page external to my website.  If I provide the same information but without usable URL’s,  AND  text not copied (I type it up), you can access the posting.

Surveillance capacity has increased dramatically since 2003 when Canadians, including myself, lodged the first complaints about the contracting-out to the American military of work done by Statistics Canada (census and surveys, the creation of detailed files on Canadians).  Because of the information we shared through the years,  Edward Snowden’s revelations were no surprise;  he confirmed what we had been telling anyone who would listen.

It seems to me a short step from blocking the upload of the posting with the usable URL’s + certain subject matter, to blocking unwanted commentary based on subject matter alone.

Continuing with details . . .

RFK expressed frustration over getting information onto mainstream media.  Similar has been expressed by Barbara Lowe, one example.  I experience a lot of difficulty on my blog, now, with information such as from you, or re Julian Assange, or re journalists in Latin America who challenge American hegemony.   It uploads, but is not accessible for public viewing — “Error, page not found”.  Blocked.  By technology. 

Not all URL’s are blocked;  some upload just fine, as always.

Journalism in Latin America is much stronger today than it was.  People like Glen Greenwald who came to the aid of Edward Snowden have partnered with other journalists for independent media in Central, South America, and the Caribbean.   I used to distribute relevant and selected material from them, with full acknowledgement of source, as has always been my practice.  Not a slam-dunk today.

It is looking as though even the URL for a Government website is deemed to maybe have a copyright connection and can be blocked.

I wonder whether the Error, page not found capability that blocks access to postings related to Big Pharma, Julian Assange, Robert F Kennedy, Canada’s Copyright Law for Gods’ sake, and so on, is a consequence of Google’s investment of billions of dollars referred to in the Comments on the European article (One year of EU copyright reformIs the Internet still working?,   20-04-2020)?

It is as though – following the enactment of the Legislation in 2019, as Google moved forward with what was now legal, the problems were not obvious.   It was the early days.  A year later, with the barn doors wide open, we need help from the neighbours.

/Sandra

Also, a new development.  Email addresses that are @icloud.com (Apple, I think) – – I code the person’s NAME in my address book as usual so I know which of my distribution lists they are on.  It does not affect the email address to which the email is sent.  I’ve been doing that for 20 years.   Today, done that way with @icloud email address, the person does not receive the email.  If I remove my coding, the person receives the email.  I assume it makes it easier for them – – algorithms for storing emails don’t know whether it’s a “same person”.

BUT the egregious part:  I receive no notification that the email has NOT been delivered.  I don’t find out that the person didn’t receive the email, and they have no way of knowing that there is information they should have received, but did not.  Every single other person on the distribution list receives the emails.  And if not I get a message to inform me.   There happen to be friends on the distribution list who look out for each other, the only way the difficulty came to light.

/Sandra

Comments:

Stefan G says:

20/04/2020 at 17:30

I still have no idea how anyone could implement this (amended Copyright Law) into national law without building a massive surveillance structure. If every upload has to be checked for copyright BEFORE it becomes public then we need an automatic central service that checks everything that someone uploads or writes anywhere on the internet. And a structure like this will be abused for political reasons eventually. Just imagine what Orban could do with a system like this.

And who will offer the services to check the content?   Until now only the big American companies have good content detection software, Google invested billions in this technology. . . .