Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Quebec Corruption Transcends Language, Ethnicity and Class

 It's safe to say that Quebecers, rocked by endless stories of corruption, collusion and malfeasance over the last year or two, have become obsessed with the issue, to the point that it has become the overriding public concern, ahead of the accumulating debt problem, high taxes, deteriorating wealth, a health system in trouble, education issues and indeed even sovereignty itself.

Ask the average Jean or Jane in the street what the number one public issue in Quebec is and invariably, corruption will almost certainly top the list almost all every time.

The voluminous catalogue of corrupt business people, public employees and politicians exposed as crooks has indeed tested our society's ability to cope, the ubiquitous stain of dishonesty tarnishing us all, leading to a collective sense of rage and overwhelming feelings of humiliation.
And so it is natural to seek a scapegoat.
It is convenient and therapeutic to find someone else to lay the blame upon and of course, it usually falls upon the Jews or the Italians to take the rap, both communities historically singled out whenever blame for society's ills are to be apportioned. 

In this case, it is of course the Italians who are being scapegoated because they are strongly represented in the construction industry and are front and centre in the recent scandals at Montreal City Hall.
This, largely because the Charbonneau commission's first witness, corrupt businessman Lino Zambito, testified that a bunch of Italian entrepreneurs were paying off city officials to 'win' contracts with the help and oversight of the Mafia.
And so the blame game is on.... c'est la faute des Italiens..
Le Canada, un refuge pour la mafia?  Radio-Canada

Une faction calabraise de la mafia italienne est au pouvoir à Montréal Huffington Post .
"Bid-rigging, a cartel headed by businessmen of Italian origin and  corrupt officials and politicians accountable to the mafia, as confirmed by testimony before the commission..." Link{fr}
Of course these stories are tame, compared to the stuff published on the Internet, where the entire Italian community was quickly held responsible and smeared for the foibles of a few.
"What strikes me the most, since the beginning of the Charbonneau Commission's hearings, is the number of Italian-Quebecers that have been implicated, and the total absence of reaction of the leaders of the Italian-Quebec community, who seem totally indifferent and insensitive to the damage to their reputation that these rotten apples have inflicted...." Richard LeHir,{Fr}

Of  course the unsaid contention is clear, that these 'rotten' Italians, like a drug dealer enticing a twelve year old to try his product, were somehow responsible for corrupting the hitherto 'white as snow' Quebecois ....bah!!

But as the corruption inquiry widens and as events play out, a different, reality emerges, one which exposes the reality that corruption in Quebec transcends language, ethnicity, religion and social class.

The English, the French, the Ethnics, the rich and the poor, the educated and the not so bright, are all as guilty as the next when it comes to corruption.
It is perhaps, one of the few aspects of Quebec society where everybody, but everybody participates equally.

Let us review what we have found out in one short year;
  • The City of Montreal is not only thoroughly corrupt, it appears that it has always been this way (and long before the Italians arrived). The ex-deputy-mayor stands indicted on various charges of fraud and influence pedalling, while the entire construction department seems to be under the influence of the mob and its proxies, where millions of dollars in bribes were made to city planners, inspectors, engineers and politicians, resulting in the sad reality that up to one third the cost of building the city's infrastructure was going to pay for graft. Mayor Gerald Tremblay was drummed out of office and the chief fundraiser of his ex-political party, Bernard Trépanier of the Union Montreal political party, stands indicted for influence-pedalling as well.
  • Ditto for Quebec's third largest city, Laval, where the mayor himself, the now resigned Gilles Vaillancourt is accused of being the Godfather  Jabba the Hutt of corruption. A couple of years ago, two provincial politicians came forward to say the good Mayor offered them both $10,000 in cash, as illegal campaign contributions. It is rumoured that when police raided two of his bank safe-deposit boxes, investigators found them stuffed with over $100K in cash. When anti-corruption police raided his luxury apartment in  Laval, Vaillancourt's cousin (the official owner of the digs) was caught trying to flush money down the toilet. The problem was that the stack of new money wouldn't flush because the bills were made of the new polymer compound!  Ha!!
  • Just about every major consulting/engineering firm in Quebec is alleged to have participated in various levels of fraud, either to secure government contracts, to funnel illegal campaign contributions to political parties and politicians and/or inflating cost estimates to enrich construction contractors, all for a price.  The president of Canada's most important consulting/engineering firm, SNC-Lavalin, Pierre Duhaime, was ousted over the debacle of alleged bribes paid to secure a Libyan contract under the then dictator and now dead, Muammar Gaddafi. Now he has been arrested in relation to a possible bribe paid to Arthur Porter the highfalutin ex-director of McGill university in relation to winning the contract for the billion dollar plus super hospital project in Montreal, which Porter was overseeing. Questions surround $22 million dollars in missing money and when the police got involved, Mr. Porter skipped town in disgrace, now holed up in the Bahamas, refusing to pay back the hospital for other monies he owes. It's a real kettle of fish!
  • Quebec's largest construction conglomerate, a multitude of companies run by the infamous Tony Accurso, is alleged to be a criminal enterprise. The high-flying, twice indicted, construction kingpin used to wine and dine public officials on his yacht in the Caribbean. He is facing possible jail time in regards to various alleged illegal schemes employed by his companies to defraud the taxman and for a multitude of successful overpriced bids on public contracts, secured through collusion with public officials. Mr. Accurso has already paid millions to the Canada Revenue Agency to settle past crimes, with predictions of more to come.
  • By the way, the Montreal office of the Canada Revenue Agency (Canada's version of the IRS) was discovered to be riddled with employees on the take. These auditors would turn a blind eye to millions of dollars in tax transgressions, all for a cut. Link
  • Then there are accusations against a former senior Liberal party fundraiser, Pierre Bibeau, the ex-husband of then serving Liberal party cabinet minister Line Beauchamp, who is accused of accepting an illegal $30,000 cash payment for the Liberal party. It led to his suspension from his very senior job at Loto-Quebec, the state run gambling agency, itself accused of fraud by a disgruntled ex-employee.  
  • Recently, Michel Samson, the verificator-general of Quebec complained that there is a lack of competition in the acquisition of software by the various government contracts. In analyzing a sample of the tenders, he found that in almost half the cases, only one company submitted a bid. This should be no big surprise, over two years ago I reported that;
    "Perhaps the most egregious abuse is that which takes place in the civil service where contracts subject  to the tender process are also said to be rigged. A software developer recently confided that he was asked to make an uncompetitive bid so that the favoured vendor would win the bidding process. "Don't worry" he was promised, "Your turn will come." Read my post, Octoer 2010,- In Quebec, the Fix is always In
On and on it goes, stories of corruption that would be unbelievable if presented in a Hollywood movie, with enough miscreants to fill a fictional rogues gallery.

Let us not forget the wholesale waste and mismanagement, while not always illegal, represents a callous disregard for the public purse.
The egregious financial mismanagement of Concordia University, the extremely poor judgment of the Board of Directors of McGill in unanimously appointing a two-bit crook like Arthur Porter as President.
Let's not forget the cynical disregard of the public's interest by the Anglophone/Jewish chairman of the Old Port of Montreal in publicly supporting his Catholic/Francophone serial expense-account abusing president.

How about the generally Protestant English Montreal school boards sending employees to Hawaii and the Dominican Republic in the middle of winter to 'study' conditions, or the Catholic French school boards sending teachers on Yoga excursions to fancy hotels, all on the arm of taxpayers.
Read: Quebec Anglos Prove We Are Pigs as Well

In all this, the only thing that all the players have in common is that they generally have nothing in common.
English, French, Ethnic, public servants, politicians of all stripes, professionals, blue collars, business people and clerical, all the various religions and races, it seems that everybody from all walks of life seems to have a hand in the sorry saga of Quebec corruption.
This is one gravy train that is an equal opportunity employer!

So let's have no more finger pointing and scapegoating, Quebecers from all walks of life are equally to blame and as the famous cartoon character  POGO said;
 "We have met the enemy and he us"


  1. And you want to make a country out of this?

    1. Don't look now, but I suspect that's actually part of the problem.

      Don't get me wrong -- I don't think we're all that distinct when it comes to corruption; I suspect in no small measure that rampant corruption is very much present in many other places on this continent. Nonetheless, I think that vacuously dwelling on how corrupt we supposedly are (or aren't), either in absolute or relative terms, doesn't do any justice to the very real problem at hand. The vapid yet toxic kangaroo court of media punditry and public commission proceedings have yet to ask the very uncomfortable and inconvenient question that any sane observer would inevitably be led to ask in similar circumstances: what is it about us -- our collective, and as Editor argues, disparate citizenly DNA -- that makes us so prone, apparently, to corruption and collusion?

      We are (and for a very long time have been) torn. The warring political ideologies that have characterized the past two and a half centuries have been successfully exploited by generations of ideologically-aligned power brokers. As in any society, these power brokers sustained their own existence through a combination of patronage and populism; virtual and tangible bread and circuses, both for the great unwashed as well as the mandarins who greased the system and the foot soldiers who kept it humming. The faceplates have changed with time, but little else. And despite the admittedly numerous layers and superficial blurs in the landscape (mutts like me, for instance), the fact that our society continues to be characterized by an enduring linguistic, ideological, and politically sectarian divide is a reminder that the brokers behind these two ideologies have yet to truly reconcile. The continuing existential threats to both ideologies, both real and perceived, trickles down fast and serves as fodder to galvanize and recruit new members into both ideologies' crusades. Accordingly, and at the behest of their handlers, the hoi polloi in our society have for ages dutifully played their part as pillaging crusaders swearing at least nominal fealty to one dogma or the other. Sooner or later, anyone who lives among us long enough comes to understand this peculiarity of ours, at least implicitly.


    2. With little motivation to row in the same direction, the various elements from the often disparate clans in our superficially "modern" society exist in an almost perennial shell-shocked survival mode because we have yet to learn to live any other way, despite claims of societal "solidarity" to the contrary. We rather un-solidarily line and then stuff our individualistic pockets simply because we can -- motivated by a putred mix of gluttony, spite, and fear -- heck, we might not live to see another opportunity like the one we happen to be milking! Everyone -- capitalists, socialists, federalists, separatists, newcomers, fossils, and yes, even mercenaries -- learns to make hay while the sun shines. So encrusted in our psyche is the related ideological survivalist sectarianism that looking out for number one (whomever/whatever "number one" happens to be) takes precedence over anything else. It matters little that our obsession with "survival" is in practical terms articulated variously, ranging from debates (or even grievances) about being awarded government contracts, getting tax breaks, language retention, culture, perks, privileges or often just acquired rights, be they real or perceived. The resulting entitlement and recrimination quilt we have either deliberately or unwittingly woven has likewise provided the perfect smokescreen behind which we have mutually and alternatingly perpetrated a slew of perfect crimes against... none other than our very selves.

      Nobody's right if everybody's wrong. True, all societies have fault lines and ours isn't necessarily unique.

      Yet what I think all these disparate groups have in common despite their apparent differences is a desire to eke a better deal for themselves or their respective tribes out of a system they implicitly (or is it explicitly?) acknowledge is a laughing stock from the very top to the very bottom.

    3. This is great - both Apparatchik & Complicated have echoed my thoughts.

      In fact I'm going to re-post one of Complicated comments from yesterday because it sums up the issue very well:

      "I have a feeling that there will be a flood of houses for sale in Montreal next spring as many anglophones come to the same conclusion. The time to sell was last year..prices will likely drop 10 percent from last years levels due to the glut of houses.

      I have lived here 11 years and I am so sick and tired of the english french tensions..I cant imagine livng here an entire lifetime and putting up with the constant fighting. What bothers me even more though is the incredible level of corruption and incompetence in government in this province and in Montreal. Its breathtaking..I could never have imagined that there could be so much dishonesty and poor management anywhere in Canada. There is nothing even remotely closeo to this anywhere else in Canada.

      I could possibly seriously listen to arguments made about seperation being good but when I see how mismanaged everything is then it becomes a total farce. The provincial and municipal governments cant even manage a lemonade how could they possible run a country??

      Alberta I could see becoming independant..they ran a tight ship for many years..not so much now but still light years ahead of Quebec..they have proven that they can run their own ship and do very well..Quebec has proven the exact opposite. And yet even with these glaring faults there are still 30 percent of the population who think that seperation would be good..obviously totally brainwashed and delusional people who have very poor math skills."

    4. Evil: A light year is a measure of distance, not a measure of time.

      Be that as it may, there is a separatist movement in Alberta, and there has been for decades. I'm for the separation of Quebec from Canada for Quebec is like a limb on a body plagued with gangrene. Retain the limb and it kills the person; sever it and while the person suffers the loss of a limb, at least the person's life may be saved.

      There would be post-separation discomfort with Quebec gone, but I think the RoC would be better off without Quebec.

  2. One common element is that there always seems to be a francophone on the giving and/or receiving end.

    1. Yeah mostly francophones. I think it's a sign that we have the move on and allow anglo administrations to rule this province and this city.

    From way back I was surprised at the French nonchalance toward dishonesty. I was raised by parents who insisted on absolute honesty in every way. The French boys I played with thought nothing of stealing in the corner store and occasionally used me for a decoy which made me furious, When they brought the stolen goods home to their parents their family gleefully shared in it. If I had done that my father would beat me black and blue and march me back to face the victim. Most english kids parents were the same. We inherited one trait from good old England; honesty.
    The English ethic shows very strongly in Vancouver, where the Brit population is strong. When I moved there I was late for work one day. At a busy 4 way stop intersection you waited your turn. No cops just drivers. I made the mistake of sneaking through behind the car ahead of me. The racket of horns and comments struck me like a kick in the ass. Someone yelled, "Hey Quebec out here we obey the law."
    I was treated with disdain until I got my B.C. plates.
    When Rene Levesque filled the ranks of civil servants with pur laine. He opened the floodgates to corruption. I'm not surprised to see Lavalin involved. The English companies like Dominion Bridge and Dominion Engineering were cast aside in spite of doing honest sustainable work for decades.
    The only thing that would change things would be a parliamentary investigation. Ed

    1. Yes they are Latin, corruption is in their DNA.

    2. Careful, J.J. That's a racist statement.

      I'm Jewish, and had I pulled a heist, even petty, I would have faced consequences similar to Ed, and my family doesn't have a drop of English blood among us. Too, I've dealt with dishonest Brits, so not all Brits are as prim and proper as the royal family (notwithstanding their shenanigans, like Harry going around buck naked and wearing a swastika, Sarah, the Dutchess of Pork, Raggedy Andy's smart alecky cracks, etc. etc. etc.)

      So J.J., what's your take on the Jews?

    3. I'm sure that they would be much less corrupted than the PQ!

    I think your basically saying the same thing I am. It would be easier to figure out if you didn't try to squeeze as many big words as possible into a sentence. Please son, throw away your thesaurus so we can see what you're talking about. Ed

  5. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 6:04:00 AM EST

    Corruption is synonymous with third world country.
    Also corruption is also prevalent in so called "social democrat" countries now on the verge of collapse i.e. Greece, Italy, Spain and now, Quebekistan.

  6. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 6:23:00 AM EST

    City of Montreal actively enabling corruption:

    1. "Call Gary" : 32e au classement des villes pour la qualité de vie...Oups!

    2. S.R. More propoganda from you..there are countless surveys and studies that place Calgary among the best cities in the world to live..check this link for instance..Calgary number 5..'s_most_livable_cities
      I have lived in both Calgary and Montreal..a good analogy..Calgary is like a finely tuned 2011 Ferrari and Montreal is like a 1975 Lada. I dont think you could find such glaring differences between two cities on this continent.
      Calgary was modern, efficient, actively making the city as attractive as possible for investment, pro-business, a strong work ethic in general, huge volunteer population, almost no corruption, friendly polite people in general, a good infrastructure well maintained and expanding, etc. Montreal literally is the total opposite and I kid you not. Montreal is literally a sinking ship and the people on board are more concerned about stealing from each other than saving the ship.

    3. Dommage que ce soit le néant au niveau culturel :(

    4. SR - Thats about all Montreal has going for it..the eternal cultural argument. Of course comparing a city with 3.5 million people thats been around for 400 years and a city with 1 million people thats been around a little over a hundred is somewhat unfair when looking at cultural activities.
      However the whole cultural argument is a weak one..Calgary has plenty of theatres, cultural centres, orchestras, festivals that would satisfy the vast majority of people. So if you are a real elitist who absolutely needs the best for cultural activites then Montreal would be your place..but then there is such a massive price to pay that its not worth it in the end. In terms of outdoor activities Calgary destroys Montreal..the Rockies are 1 hour away with 4 major ski resorts that make Mont Tremblant look like a bunny hill..phenomenal hiking in the class cross country ski centre in Canmore..mountain climbing..horseback riding. And Calgary often has little to no snow much of the winter..two winters I was there we had the famous Chinook winds which kept the snow away..but 1 hour away in the mountains there was tons. However Montreal does have better summer weather..hands down..its chilly in Calgary in the summer.

    5. Montreal is more like a poorly neglected and rusted 1971 Ford Pinto.

    6. To Complicated - love to see someone else who's fed up with the whole "montreal as cultural epicenter" argument.

      Newflash seppies - MTL's cultural star is actually fading. Compare MTL V.1990 to MTL V.2012 and it is nowhere near the cultural Mecca it once was.

      If Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary were human brothers, Montreal would be considered the coolest brother by many, but only because "he knows how to drink and have a good time."

      At the end of the day, Brother Montreal has no money, no job, can't manage his money and his biggest group of supporters are R9 socially inept rejects who couldn't hold down a job if their lives depended on it.

      In fact, if you watch the movie C.R.A.Z.Y, MTL is that one brother who ends up dead of a heroin overdose on the shitter.

    7. Compare MTL V.1990 to MTL V.2012 and it is nowhere near the cultural Mecca it once was.

      Gotta disagree with the first date you give there. Once the 90's recession and referendum angst subsided, Montreal did have something of a renaissance.

      Cultural mecca? The term is subjective even on a high. Still, if we accounted for the relative conservatism of the time periods in question, I'm sure you'd get all sorts of answers on precisely when Montreal's "cultural" heyday began and ended.

      I just don't know that the Mulroney years were it.

    8. But enviroment in Montreal (and Quebec in general) is better because Welfare is the main industry here and it's very green compared to dirty oil sands in Alberta, agrees S.R?

    9. Your statement makes sense

  7. This is off the topic of corruption, but I couldn't help but take the pot-shot:

    First the PQ back-pedals on cutting out the Liberals' $200/year health tax...and now...they're
    turning on the students.

    Oh how I love it! The protests are set to continue all over again.

    1. It will be interesting to see if Miss Pee brings back a revised version of the Bill that Charest put in place to stop the disruptions last time around. The old "anything for your vote" is alive and well in socialist quebec. Wonder which one will march with the gangs this time around.

  8. I just don't get it. When I worked in the Federal Government, we had strict guidelines as to what was acceptable and ethical behaviour. I personally don't know one person that took any money when we allocated contracts to companies. The procedure was well defined and we had so many levels of approvals and financial administration people overseeing the procedures, that there was no way of rigging bids for jobs. The most exciting thing that happened when we worked with the companies was that they bought our lunch once in awhile which was about $10.00 for each of us or somewhere in that range. The closest I ever came to receiving a bribe was someone sent me a dozen roses and the card read "from a secret admirer" or I would have refused to accept them. The people involved in all the scandals in quebec obviously covered for one another for so long that no one thought twice about the ethics of their employment. I just don't understand how it went on for soooooo many years without someone blowing the whistle on at least a few of them.

    1. "from a secret admirer"

      Probablement Resident Evil...

    As I stated above we are living with the Francophone ethic toward dishonesty. Why the French? Why the Italians? I blame it on the Catholic Church. The Church took from the people who were aware of stories of dishonesty among their Priests. Everybody in town knew when Father X was breaking hos vows by screwing happily married Mrs. So and So. They charged people for every little service such as advice which should have been free. The vow of poverty meant nothing. The standard for a Priest was to drive the biggest Buick. A Cadillac would be too ostentatious and noticeable. I remember poor old Mrs. Donnelly across from us telling my Mother, "My God he's taken every last dollar from my sugar bowl. He knew where it was and helped himself." This sort of thing went on from the Pope down.
    The stories of papal lust and criminality are many. Pope Alexander 6th (Rod Borgia) would sell a Cardinalship for $ 50,000. ducats and invite the unsuspecting man to the Vatican for supper where his daughter Lucrezia Borgia would poison him so he could sell to another. Although I have known some wonderful Priests in my life time, there was no leadership to look up to. Ed

    1. What a one-sided load of crap.

      Victorian Britain, much more homogeneous than it is today, wasn't exactly the most wonderful place to be.

      The guys at Enron, Goldman Sachs, and Lehman Brothers weren't exactly Catholic Francophones, and they're pretty (in)famous for doing to millions around the world what your town's priest did to Mrs. Donnelly. Plus, the finance gurus' pals on Wall Street are still savagely doing to you and me what Father X routinely and consensually did with the happily married Mrs. So and So.

      Time and again, the U.S. administration has used concocted, questionable, and flimsy "evidence" to convince America and its "allies" countries to go war. Unethical and dishonest. Massive repercussions. How many Frenchies there, Ed?

      Tell me, Ed, do you actually need to get your head out of your ass before "contributing" to this blog or are you able to type on your keyboard with your noggin snugly cradled by your butt cheeks?

      The exploitative disregard for the people being exploited is indeed a byproduct of centuries of indifference. Until and unless we address that part of our collective dysfunctional psyche, there will be no moving forward.

    2. "If you're not a socialist at the age of 20 you have no heart. If you're not a conservative at the age of 40, you have no brain.”
      I would hope from your writing, Apparatchik, that you're closer to 20 than 40, although based on your nom de plume that may not be the case. Regardless of the state of your head and heart, your gratuitously snotty comments demonstrate an appalling lack of class. Attack the ideas, not the person.

    3. Actually, Editor, I'm trying to understand why you don't find Apparatchik's comments to be a "gratuitous personal insult" or an "ad hominem attack". Taking the evening off would be a valid reason, but if that's not it, maybe you could enlighten us.

    4. App: In light of the next-to-last paragraph you wrote above at 3:30pm, I have written the Editor under separate cover requesting the removal of your entry. That was hitting below the belt, and I've seen the Editor previously censor similar condescending, impudent remarks aimed directly at the individuals. Quel surprise that S.R. supports your remarks.

      If the Roman Catholic church is so damn terrific, why was the Church abandoned in droves in the early 1960s by Quebec's predominantly Catholic society? Why were so many churches turned into stores, condos and other uses? Why is the «pur laine» population dropping, to one of the lowest birth rates on the planet as opposed to a very high one before the Quiet Revolution?

      Why was Johannes Gutenberg, the inventor of the printing press, excommunicated by the Church? Why? Because it was for the first time the printed word could be mass produced and parishioners were not so dependent on the word of the clergy and instead of being fed endless Church b.s. at the word of the clergy.

      As far as I'm concerned, the Roman Catholic church was a despicable institution, and still is! It's exploitative, it's perverted and it's more hypocritical and corrupt than any other religion. The pope is treated as well as a king. I thought everybody below the pope is supposed to live in perpetual poverty, like the Vatican and the billions of dollars of precious artworks not only seen by those who enter its portals as tourists, but the art stored in what I'm sure is a network of cellars and other places within its walls.

      Instead of burying these treasures, why aren't they sold to feed the poor? They have followers all over the world going to bed with rumbling, empty bellies. Seems for the last 20-30 years we now hear countless stories of pedophiles sexually exploiting the young, viciously beating those who, like most children, slightly step out of line (including nuns), and other assorted horror stories.

      In Michel Gratton's book, he wrote about his experiences at a French Catholic boarding school in Papineauville, on the Quebec side of the Ottawa River about 40 miles from his home in the Ottawa suburb of Vanier, ON. Because he was a Franco Ontarian and not «pur laine», his fellow students, and the teaching brothers as well, labeled him with innuendos including «vendu», a slur labeling him as second class because he was not Québécois.

      The first time I got to know Acadians, some 30 years ago on my first job after graduating from university, I was shocked to feel their disdain for Quebec, but I have since figured out why they felt that way.

      Being Jewish, I can go on about cruelty to the Jews by the Church, especially when you hear Mel Gibson's drunken diatribes about the Jews, passed down to him by his father, and I'm sure passed down to his father by his grandfather, etc. etc. etc. Maybe I better not get started on that topic.

      My late mother, MSRIP, was a Jew born in small town Quebec, so she learned of the goings-on first hand within the parish where she grew up. Being a town of 6,500, everybody knew everybody else's business, so the word would spread fast. I fully believe what Ed wrote above. Wanna take a shot at me for that, App?

    5. Shame on you, Sauga, for seeing ad hominem attack in the place of the not-so-subtle bigotry I was denouncing.

      Double shame on you for being a Jew and not having done it before I did. How soon some of us forget the breadth of all the implications behind the phrase "never again". Or do those lessons apply only to certain peoples in certain times and in certain places?

      Triple shame on you for not attacking the essence of my message, and, in so doing, for engaging in the very same ad-hominem attack against me that you simplistically accuse me of against a third participant.

      Quadruple shame on you for thinking it your place to task Editor with silencing me because you don't like that part of my message is couched in what one might call somewhat vulgar... Latin. If you have something to reproach me with, say it to me. Telling someone to get their head out of their ass isn't the worst anybody here has ever heard or said, so let's stop pretending the world just stopped spinning, m'kay?

      Looking inward and criticizing my own people and my own past is the reason I've actually arrived at the opinions and beliefs I have. It also helps to be open to nuance. For example, it's an understatement to state that I don't support much of what politically fuels separatists and even many nationalists. However, many of their more tangible ideals about French-language protection (terminology, standardization) very much inform my own outlook (and personal efforts) regarding usage.

      I don't refute -- much less condone -- that you reference in your post nor any of the other abusive crap perpetrated by the Catholic Church on Catholics and millions of others throughout its history. The true list of atrocities is actually far longer than any single human could ever hope to know or enumerate.

      At the same time, your knee-jerk reaction in which you rattle off more examples of "Catholic" failings was discouraging. Rather than soberly consider the hell of (politically) sectarian clashes, you chose to demonstrate to me yet again how very vacuous, repetitive, and superficial your thought process could sometimes be.

      And while I agree that some good can come out of practicing (and even promoting) a religion, I also have several choice things to say about role of various religions on the behavior of their adherents throughout history.

      Since the self-appointed pomposity that is your trademark has irritated me so very much today, I'd be tempted to leave you with the mental exercise, as a Jew, to consider the cruelty inflicted on others by those calling themselves "Jews" or acting in the name of "Judaism". The thing that truly saddens me, given your spastic reaction to my earlier comment to Ed and the repetitive peanut-gallery attitude you tend to demonstrate here on a daily basis, is that I'm not so certain you'd be able to genuinely and critically do so. That's actually not a pot shot, as much as I wished it were; it's actually a deep-seated feeling I get following this blog.

      I'm free not to read or react to everything you write, and I sometimes exercise that freedom. But some days it's almost as though you actually believed your shit didn't smell; and that's the part that utzes me a bazillion times more than the fact that I might disagree with you on any number of issues.

      You want to talk about separating the noise from the signal, the wheat from the chaff, or about cleaning up what's polluting this blog in general?

      Give it some thought.

    6. App: You wouldn't know an ad hominem argument from me if it bit you in the ass. You've obviously fallen into the trap of an ad hominem fallacy. Rare is the time I'll go that route, making every effort to avoid same. Ad hominema, as far as I'm concerned, is for the brain-dead and those who politic for a living.

  10. Yes Ed you may be right. When I was a child the faith of the Catholics in the church was absolute. You did not dare say or do anything against the church. When I told my father of things I thought were wrong in the church he would tell me I was the one that was wrong and the priest of the parish was always right no matter what. When I went to confession when I was about 9 or 10 and the priest asked where I lived I told him that it was not his business and my dad was angry that I told him that even though I knew he was not supposed to ask for such info. I never again willingly went to church. When allegations of child abuse started to be talked about it took many years for Catholics to finally see the truth and the trust in the system started to break down. I remember how shocked I was to hear my friend paid $10,000 to have his marriage annulled even though he had two children with his ex wife because he wanted to marry again in the Catholic Church. That was about 30 years ago and it was then I really realized that the whole church was based on money and not a belief in God. The beginning of the end for our trust in a system and for sure the rest flows from there. Politicians are right up there among the least trusted people in our society and we now see why - most can't be trusted to do the right thing.

    1. Cutie, to get a divorce in Judaism works much the same way. In fact, it can be worse because it's a panel of rabbis that first have to approve the divorce and they have to each be paid fees to do this; secondly, it goes against the women because the man has to provide his wife with a written certificate called a get, and if the man chooses, he can make it very difficult.

      I'm separated from my wife many years and while I may go through the laws of Ontario for a divorce, I will not go through the religious ritual, not no way, not no how. If I decide to marry my common law partner, I'll do it at city hall. I abandoned the dietary strictures (kosher) because as far as I'm concerned, it's a racket. I met a couple through friends who at one point were kosher caterers, but the people running the authority to grant them certification that they were kosher wanted ever increasing graft to allow them to keep their certification (over and above the exorbitant fees to obtain the certificate alone). Eventually they refused, their certification was taken away, and when it went to provincial court, the case was thrown out because Ontario is governed under secular law, i.e., separation of synagogue and state, like most democratic societies.

      There is little altruism in religion and a plenitude of corruption, so my answer to that was becoming secular. F**k the religious aspects of society, it's a free-for-all full of corrupt fanatics. Imams and ayatollahs are not excluded from my wrath.

    2. Yes, religion has caused multitudes of problems from the beginning of time. Islam extremism is a great example in that it teaches death is better than life - there is no reasoning with people that believe that. How crazy can we be to follow these people and their teachings? Unfortunately people don't change much and follow like lambs to slaughter behind these people. I am no longer a religious person and do quite well living by the golden rule which I wish everyone did. A lot less problems in the world.

  11. The PQ is presenting the updated bill 101. We'll see if the CAQ and Libs will reject it as they said they would.

    1. God I hope they don't let the stupid Bill 14 go through - more trouble on the way and they just keep pushing this language issue until we're all sick to death with the discrimination and politics of division. What a bunch of wieners.

  12. The blatant corruption of the PQ starts at the very top and is worse than that of the Mafia.This just reeks.

    From today's Ottawa Citizen:

    " Premier Pauline Marois has defended the decision to give two lucrative jobs to former Parti Quebecois leader Andre Boisclair, calling him a talented and competent man.

    Boisclair, whose two-year tenure as PQ leader ended in 2007 shortly after he led the party to one of its worst electoral performances, was appointed Quebec's delegate-general to New York in early November.

    But what angered some politicians on Tuesday was confirmation that Boisclair has also been named assistant deputy minister in the International Relations Department.

    That appointment, endorsed in a Nov. 28 cabinet decree, allows Boisclair to remain in the civil service on a permanent basis.

    The 46-year-old will be guaranteed an annual salary of $170,000 and will then be able to start taking his full pension at the age of 55.

    International Relations Minister Jean-Francois Lisee acknowledged it is the first time a Quebec government representative outside the province has double-dipped in such a way.

    Marois said Boisclair is extremely competent and has overseen thousands of civil servants in his various cabinet portfolios.

    "He almost became premier of Quebec, he could have been premier of Quebec," said Marois, who was defeated by Boisclair for the PQ leadership in 2005.

    "He got more than one million votes in the 2007 election and then he completed his postgraduate studies in the United States. This is a man who has strong interpersonal skills and a lot of talent."

    Boisclair's PQ finished a disappointing third in the that election behind the minority Liberals and the now-defunct Action democratique du Quebec.

    Lisee said Boisclair's second appointment should have been made public at the same time as the New York job.

    "I don't think there was any intent to camouflage it because it was going to come out at some point," Lisee said.

    ''But from a communications point of view, it would have been better to do it the same day.''

    Boisclair sought permanent status in the civil service because his New York appointment meant he had to renounce his consultancy work, Lisee noted.

    ''He asked us if it was possible to have some security. And in this case, given the quality of his candidacy, we thought it was worth it.''

    However, Quebec solidaire denounced the appointment, calling it favouritism.

    ''At a time when the Quebec government is asking the middle class and even poor people to tighten their belts, we are asking Mr. Boisclair to give up the dual functions,'' said Francoise David, one of the left-wing party's two members in the national assembly.

    ''Frankly, we find it indecent.''

    Elected at age 23 in 1989, Boisclair admitted in 2005 to personally using cocaine while serving as a member of the legislature between 1996 and 2003.

    He served as a cabinet minister between 1998 and 2003, holding the immigration, social solidarity and environment portfolios. He quit politics in 2004 to attend the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University before beoming PQ leader.

    He has since worked in academia and was a consultant with a Calgary-based energy company when he was recruited by Marois' government. It was while he was with the Alberta company that he knocked the PQ's opposition to shale-gas development."

    Michel Patrice, how can you dream of sovereignty when you know that it's going to be even worse than this disgusting situation ?

    1. The whole thing is totally embarrassing for all of us that reside in this cesspool of a province. Don't we have enough problems without these ridiculous appointments and Bill 14? Tailspin is a nice word for where we're headed. Maybe we should all start doing coke - it seems to pay off.

    2. Mr Krug,

      "Michel Patrice, how can you dream of sovereignty when you know that it's going to be even worse than this disgusting situation ?"

      No, I don't know that it will be even worse, nor do I know that it will be better. But I know that we would then have one government instead of two conflicting ones. And I have this feeling that we live in an era of immobilism and that this stagnation brings, among other things, cynism and corruption. And I also know that, with independence, all of a sudden, things could no longer be just the way they are, and this sudden matter of survival could just be the electro-shock that we badly need.

      This being said, let's say that Ms Marois would secretly receive, let's say, 75,000$/year (just a random number) from the PQ and that this money would come in part from kick backs on extras on governemnt contracts. I can only imagine the fit that you would have over those corrupted reeking separatists. You obviously do not like the PQ and your opinion is hence biaised beyond good faith. Your statement that the corruption of the PQ is worse than that of the mafia is simply ridicule.

      Is this appointement of Boisclair questionnable? Of course it is. Is it worse than what the mafia does? Please, give me a break.

      Michel Patrice, tell the truth. There was no stagnation until the PQ came into play. Jean Charest kept the economy moving. You say what if Marois received secretly $75,000. per year from the PQ which would come in part from kickbacks on government contracts. Michel, that statement is so PQ and exactly what's wrong here. Yes, I do not like the PQ because they do bad things that people like you seem to think are alright. Ed

    4. Michel Patrice,

      No, I will not give you a break. It is far worse than the Mafia because it is the Premier of a province taking, excuse me, stealing the money of hard working tax payers to give a life time sinecure to someone for no reason other than that he was a fellow PQ member and to remove a potential rival. Let's not dwell in your utterly biased fantasy world where separatists are a bunch of persons with noble aims. The politicians among them, i.e. the leaders, are screwing the other suckers who vote for them. They are not going to make anyone's life any better. They are motivated by power pure and simple and the rewards and trappings of power.

      You voted for the PQ. Did you expect that the PQ politicians were pure as the driven snow? They are corrupt as Hell. They have, in effect, stolen your money and given it away to Boisclair.

      Don't bother telling us that politicians in other parties do the same thing. We know that, but to see a Premier who was newly elected after campaigning about Liberal Party corruption engage in this type of conduct is repulsive.

      As for Boisclair's claim that he would suffer a loss of income, no one forced him to accept the position, but I suspect that his income tax returns would disclose that he is making more money just from his New York appointment than from his consulting work.

    5. "No, I don't know that it will be even worse, nor do I know that it will be better."

      Your ambiguity/ignorance thereby eliminates you from the debate. You clearly lack the understanding necessary to formulate a sound technical argument for the seppie pretty much every single seppie before you.

      "And I also know that, with independence, all of a sudden, things could no longer be just the way they are, and this sudden matter of survival could just be the electro-shock that we badly need."

      You've clearly never visited Africa or even taken the time to study some of its despots.

      "This being said, let's say that Ms Marois would secretly receive, let's say, 75,000$/year (just a random number) from the PQ and that this money would come in part from kick backs on extras on governemnt contracts. I can only imagine the fit that you would have over those corrupted reeking separatists."

      As we've already covered many times before, all this corruption is squarely on the shoulders of the sovereignists for one very simple reason - they allowed themselves to be played like the pawns they are so that those in power could use their numbers to accumulate wealth and power... in effect, thanks for ruining everything Michel.

      Don't even think of coming back here and arguing with us until:

      1. You study up on the power patterns of war lords and their regimes

      2. Gain a moderate understanding of human psychology

      3. Admit that separatist movements are born of an utter refusal to co-operate and work in tandem with one's neighbors and is therefore inherently racist and exclusionary

    6. Mr Brown,

      I am not talking about the Charest era or the Marois era.

      I am talking about the Quiet Revolution vs the period following the 1980 referendum and about the Meech Lake cycle vs the period following the 1995 referendum.

      I don't like this period of time. Half of us said No to remaining in Canada and half of us said No to independence. And here we are, sitting still, with growing coruption, growing intolerance, growing cynism. There is no leader. There is no common project, no common goal, nothing that we aim to accomplish together.. This is the immobilism I was talking about. And I don't like it.



      "... they do bad things that people like you seem to think are alright."

      These things are not all right. I meant that Mr Krug's judgment was biaised beyond goos faith. (I know, I know, so is my judgment...).

    7. Resident Evil,

      Pour quelqu'un qui trouvait que j'utilisais un ton pédant, tu ne donnes pas ta place. : )

      You know, you don't have to read what I write.

    8. The solution to your problem Michele is to promote municipal or federal referendums and vote to leave Canada. If your area votes to go = Bingo - you have your new country and then the immobility will end for all of us (which is exactly what all of us should be striving for). Even if your area votes to stay within Canada, you will have some areas that will be part of a new country where you will be able to move without a problem (and your property will be worth a lot more - just think of the wonderful new home you will be able to buy in your new independent quebec). Promote the idea to your wonderful fellow citizens and let's get on with it!

    9. Cutie003,

      I almost agree to some extent with you about the idea of partition.

      I just think that areas of Québec and areas of Canada scattered and mixed together across the territory would cause a bigger mess than what we now have.

      We agree on a need to end the immobility. That's a (very modest) start...

    10. I think that there are many areas along the NB and Ontario boarder that have made it clear they want to remain within Canada. If there are some areas that are caught in the middle, resettlement grants could be made to residents to promote a smooth transfer of the population to the area they choose to go, should they so wish. This would take a willingness of the separatist government to work with the federal government and that would be the problem because they can't seem to work with anyone. Even a valid survey of the municipalities or the Federal Districts to see approximately how this would work out, would be helpful. We have to start somewhere or everyone on this blog will be long dead and the immobility will still exist.

    11. I have to leave for tonight. Just a quick comment.

      "I think that there are many areas along the NB and Ontario boarder that have made it clear they want to remain within Canada."

      If Gatineau wants to stay with Canada, it is all right and it may be better for both Canada and Québec since Gatineau is economicaly integrated to the Ottawa region.

      "If there are some areas that are caught in the middle, resettlement grants could be made to residents to promote a smooth transfer of the population to the area they choose to go, should they so wish."

      A grant could compensate for my house if I would leave from a territory remaining in Canada to a territory leaving with Québec. But such a grant could not make up for leaving behind the business I have been building for the last twenty years, for the clientele I have built, for the network of people I interact with every day, or for my girlfriend's job. We have no desire to start over in a new city.

      These things would indeed take forever to sort out and everyone here would be long dead. So I advocate something more radical : trancher le noeud gordien.

    12. Well Michele as you pointed out a grant could not compensate etc. We anglophones and allophones also have no desire to start over in a new city and leave everything behind that we have built for the past 50 or more years either. The only difference between us is that the separatists have built in laws limiting rights of all citizens in this province and created a feeling of "pushing" out those that they consider not pur laine. Call it what you will, but they have promoted hatred, bigotry and xenophobia among the population of quebec and have done so without a second thought as to end result of their actions. The Gordian knot will not be cut without real problems occurring in quebec, possibly even violence if they persist in their attacks on our rights and freedoms.

    13. Michel,

      Wow thats a very open minded of you. Then I guess 2/3 of Montreal Islands, parts of Laval, parts of Montreals' South Shore half of Soulanges to the Ontario border (highway 40 to the 417), Northern Quebec, as well as Lower North Shore, southern parts of the Chateauguay Valley and Eastern Townships should also be able to seperate from Quebec.

    14. Why not if it is done democratically? That is what all of us must accept for there to be any solution to this on-going stalemate between us. We all agree on one thing - democracy - so let's practice what we preach because it seems to be the only thing we do agree on. Municipal or Federal district referendums to settle who belongs where. Even if we hold a carefully thought out survey of Quebec, it will, at least, give us an idea of where to start to put an end to this mess. We can't be much worse off than we are now with this escalating friction between the separatists and the federalists. The more power the PQ and/or any separatist government has, the more friction there will be. We have to put a stop to it somehow!

    15. Jarry Street,

      I guess that if I explained why I think that arbitrarily splitting economicaly and geographically integrated entities would create a absurd mess I would be waistng my time.

    16. But arbitrarily splitting up the second biggest country in the world is OK by a 50+1 vote? Do you think that is possible without civil war breaking out? I don't see how that is possible unless done by partitioning. Whatever is done has to be done democratically for all the population, not half. Do you honestly think that 49% of the population that lost the vote would just sit back and say "OK - you won"? This isn't the Grey Cup where you come back next year for another kick at the ball. You sound like a reasonably intelligent person but thinking that you can steal the land and the heritage of 49% of the population without retaliation from the losing side is dreamland. Unfortunately, that is what your government representatives tell you but that would never be true in the next 100 years. Quebec will lose a lot of land to Canadian citizens that will demand to remain part of their country - make no mistake about that.

    17. Cutie003,

      I don't mean to arbitrarily split the second biggest country in the world. I mean to separate an entity that is geographically, politicaly, historicaly, sociologicaly, demographicaly, linguistic, economicaly different. This separation isn't arbitrary like, let's say, the border between Saskatchewan and Alberta, it is grounded in reality.

      "Do you honestly think that 49% of the population that lost the vote would just sit back and say "OK - you won"? "

      You mean like we did when we lost in 1995?

    18. That was strictly a consultation that quebecers thought was going to lead to a new deal with Canada not a declaration of independence and the average quebecer did not know that crazy Parizeau was ready and willing to tear everyone's life apart the next day. The lifestyle of the average quebecer was not at all affected by the outcome. A few tears from the separatists and back we went to the same life as the day before. Try pulling the country apart financially and physically and see where that leads us. We are doomed to civil war should that ever take place with 49% of the population not being able to protect themselves from financial ruin. You underestimate the passion of the Canadian people to being held in a new country against their will.

  13. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 12:37:00 PM EST

    Andre Boisclair "has since worked in academia and was a consultant with a Calgary-based energy company when he was recruited by Marois' government. It was while he was with the Alberta company that he knocked the PQ's opposition to shale-gas development."
    Calgary? Alberta? Boiclair? Bashing PQ's opposition to shale gas?
    Boisclair? working with Alberta???????
    A separatist liking Calgary??????????????

    S.R. your friend Boisclair is a real quebecois. Comme toi. Fucking shady to the max...

  14. I have been trying to figure out why Montreal has become such a cesspool for corruption. I think there are a few is the amount of federal money that flows into the city from the federal govt..more than many other cities around. The only reason so much money flows in is because the federal government has tried so hard to keep the seperatists happy. As well people here know that if any funny business goes on here the federal govt will stay quiet because they wont want to be accused of being anti-Quebec. So more and more corruption occurs because it goes unchecked.

    I also think the massive power of unions in this province is another major source of corruption and waste. Many workers have the unions behind them and they feel they can do anything and they will be protected. Hence bit by bit we see all sorts of abuses happening and getting worse and worse.

    The pur laine dominance in provincial and municipal governments also adds to the problem. Its well known that it is very hard for an anglophone and even allophones to get hired by either govt. Hence now we have people working in these entities that are not necessarily the best people out there..many are there because they are pur laine. And it feeds on itself..the more pur laine in the govt the higher the chance they will only hire the pur laine. So you have a workforce that thinks more or less the same seems that the pur laine are much more apt to call in sick, to play the system - not quite sure where this came from but I have observed it in many different places. I suspect it may have originated from the past when the minority english were in control and there was a seething resentment from the pur laine and once they got the power they made darn sure they all had the cushy jobs and that they took as many beneftis they were or not entitled too.

    I often here from francophones the argument that the elites, politicians, managers are ripping off the system even more so that their own minor discretions are not a big deal.

    When you start living in an environment where corruption is unchecked year after year, decade after decade then even honest people get fed up and start thinking that may as well get their fair share because everyone is ripping off the system. When I first moved to Montreal I couldnt believe how many people were paying cash to avoid the tax - it was rampant, even major housebuilders told us we could pay cash to avoid the tax. People have no faith in their government because of the corruption so they try to avoid paying the tax..and they dont feel bad about it.

    Basically nobody seems to be in charge in Quebec - nobody is watching the hens - its a free for all - if you look at history when societies moral standards collapse then the country or state is not far away from imploding. Thats why even with abundant natural resources..a fantastic location close to major markets..good transportation infrastructure..a bilingual/trilingual fairly educated workforce I am not optimistic because the level of corruption and lax moral standards is widespread and there is no hint that anybody will really do anything about it.

  15. Just for some perspective on this Transparency International compiles a worldwide Corruption Perception Index (measuring lack of public auditing, coziness between government officials and large companies, bribery in public tenders, political party financing and tax evasion, etc.). In it Canada is ranked 9th in the world. Note that UK is ranked 17th and USA 18th. If the theory proposed by many on this board that there is intrinsic tolerance to corruption in Quebec culture wouldn't you expect to see these numbers reversed?

    I would suggest that it is a positive sign that so must public attention is focused on corruption in Quebec. If there are no such scandals one can usually assume that it is occurring but hidden.

    1. "Captive State" is an excellent book on the corruption in the UK:

    2. Josef K,

      After seeing firsthand how corruption in 'third world countries' is, I think I can answer your question. Canada holds itself a pretty high bar for corruption. Therefore, we see the corruption in Quebec as something that is truly bad and evil. However, compared to the corruption practice elsewhere, what is done in Quebec is not that bad. Again, comparatively speaking, and I do not mean that corruption in Quebec is not bad.

      And so, the premise of Maclean's article is right. Quebec is the most corrupt, as other provinces and territories are so much better against corruption they and Quebec manage to put themselves in rank no. 9 in the world.

    3. @ complicated

      I have been trying to figure this out too and have difficulty coming up with an answer. Blaming it on socialist policies and pointing to Greece, Portugal and Italy makes sense, but then you have the Scandinavian countries that have socialist leanings and large governments, without the corruption.

      Pointing to the ethnic and religious aspects just seems way too easy. I just don't see how Catholics/Italians/whoever would be more prone to corruption than others.

      Unions might make sense, but again, the Scandinavian countries have high levels of unionization as well.

      The couple of items I have thought of are:
      1. Lax enforcement/light sentences. There just seem to be no consequences to corruption. Nobody has so far gone to jail, and I doubt many will. When you can get away with murder by claiming depression, it is hard to see many doing real jail time for corruption.

      2. Lack of transparency. I have read that the city of Montreal discloses a lot less information publicly than do many other cities in North America so it easier to hide things.

      And I think that corruption is something that snowballs. When the engineer next to you is getting payoffs without any consequences, when your predecessor mayor took bribes, it just becomes normal and ingrained in the culture. At that point it becomes very difficult to eradicate.

    4. Josef and Troy.. I am not surprised that Canada ranks very well in terms of having little corruption. As I said there is no other place in Canada that can touch Quebec though. Quebec on its own would rank way way lower than Canada..probably around 50th. I can tell you that after living in 4 other provinces in Canada I have never seen anything even close to the corruption here in Quebec. It is everywhere and it seems to be accepted by most people here. It is embedded deeply in the culture.

      When there are no consequences to bad behaviour it just gets worse and worse. Everybody tip toeing around Quebec and not wanting to be accused of being anti-Quebec has allowed the Quebec monster to grow unchecked. Its a little bit like daring to criticize are quickly labelled an anti-semite which has become something everybody bends over backwards to avoid..well if you attack Quebec too much then you are Quebec-bashing even if there is a lot of truth to the criticisms. A heavy meditteranena influence in the city doesnt seem to be helping either as some corruption attitudes have been imported here.

    5. Perhaps Quebec is the most corrupt of the major provinces, but not by the margin that people here suggest. Recently, there have been political scandals involving corruption in Alberta, Ontario and British Columbia. Do people here really believe that organized crime doesn't exist in Ontario and BC? From my experience, Quebec is slightly worse the difference is not so much as people believe.

      Using the data from Transparency International and a couple of calculations, if Quebec would be as corrupt as USA then that means ROCanada is tied for the least corrupt country in the world! I know a bit about doing business in Denmark and ROCanada is no Denmark — not even close.

    6. Complicated,

      Since you wrote on a previous thread that 9/11 was a plot by unknown parties rather than Al Quada, your common sense is on its face suspect, so one is not surprised that, out of all the countries in the world, you inject a reference to Israel into your comments. Why don't you try yoga?

    7. AM - not to forget that the murderers of Pierre Laporte are still greeted by applause by the separatists whenever they appear in public. They were even given a great holiday for the murder. No consequences for anybody involved in politics in this place and of course, they have a problem with the conservatives trying to enhance criminal laws in this country.

    8. John Krug - You prove my point right there. Once again cant even mention anything remotely negative about Israel and the attacks begin. Israel is just perfect John..move along now..

    9. Jozef - I have lived in 4 other provinces including Ontario..there is nothing approaching to what goes on here in Montreal. Its everywhere in Montreal from the bottom all the way to the top. I have seen so much crap in this city that its mind boggling. Here are some examples of things I have never see anywhere else.

      1. The amount of sick leave on the order of 2-3 times higher than elsewhere..because sick leave is treated as vacation leave here. Seen this at my work and other work areas.

      2. Roads that are torn up completely then repaved..then a month later torn up in areas because either someone screwed up and/or an excuse to bill the city for more repairs. I have actuslly seen a street on one corner repaved and dug up four times within 6 months..

      3. Street cleaning once per week on quiet Montreal residential streets..twice per year would be more than enough..everywhere else I have lived it was done twice per year.

      4. Rampant cash economy..everybody pays cash for renovations, services, etc..and its widely aceepted..even large companies promote it.

      5. Traffic lights that stop working on the same intersections 5-8 times per year. Sounds like somebody wants a regular revenue stream for maintenance and/or gross incompetence.

      6. My mailman driving from house to house in his car or the post office truck leaving the engine running..and not just in winter but even in spring/summer when its nice. Oh and my mailman not delivering the mail at all on many Mondays and Fridays especially when its nice weather.

      7. There were two official post offices within 5 minutes of each other in my neighborhood when I moved here. The postmen looked bored out of their mind. Meanwhile out west almost all regular post offices were closed down about 20 years ago and moved into pharmacies but not in here we need post offices everywhere even if nobody uses them.

      8. How about our wonderful 7 dollar a day daycare system. I was lucky enough to get two of my kids in the system after years on a waiting list. But I could have easily paid more and saw countless examples of wealthy mothers who did not work at all who were dropping their kids off at the 7 dollar per day daycare while they drove off in their BMWs to get a manicure.

      9. Students blocking access to my sons high school to support the illegal students strike. Teachers telling my own children they should support the are a teacher and are supposed to be impartial and tell both sides of the story..I must be asking too much..

      10. Lazy ass union protected janitors in the schools who do the bare minimum and dont clean the schools properly. The teachers end up doing a lot of cleaning themselves. I am not a teacher but no one a few intimately and have seen how filthy many schools are. In Alberta interestingly the schools were cleaned much better.

      And I could go on and on..believe me I did go out of my way to find issues..I was quite naive and positive my first few years in Quebec and then bit by bit I kept seeing examples of incompetence and immorality all over the place..its systemic here believe me..

      These are just some observations I have made..not counting all the crap that has been going on at city hall and at the provincial level and within the construction industry.

    10. complicated,

      While I have my sympathy with you, these points are not corruption in Quebec:

      6. Canada Post is a Federal Canadian Crown Corporation.
      7. Idem.
      8. Lousy policy, not corruption.
      9. Despicable attitude, but again, not corruption.

    11. Troy - I agree..but these pathetic and wasteful attitudes correlates very highly with corrupt behaviour in my experience. If people can abuse and take advantage of the system to this degree then corruption is not far behind.
      Yes Canada Post is a federal institution but I have never seen postal workers anywhere else in Canada taking the day off whenever they want and driving from door to door. Its just another example of how things are done in Montreal. Its the special attitude that so many have in this wonderful city. I will also say thay my impression is that its really Montreal the problem..not so much the further away you are from Montreal. I have received far better and honest service from people in smaller towns further out..more in line with what I have seen in the rest of Canada. Montreal is really a cesspool of corruption, inefficiency, poor attitude/work ethic and dishonesty.

    12. complicated,

      A conspiracy theorist like you is a sad case. This is a blog about Quebec, got it, Quebec, not Israel or the Middle East. Yet you feel compelled to work Israel into your comments without any point. It does not require an intellectual tour de force to understand why you persist in doing so. As for your request that I move along, in case you cannot grasp it, the days of people like you telling Jews to move along are long over.

    13. complicated,

      You must have had myopia when you lived in other provinces. In Ontario, for example, there is organized crime on a massive scale and it permeates the power structure, including law enforcement agencies. One small example: on virtually every block where there are commercial establishments there is at least one massage parlour.Who do you think owns these places?

      As far as infrastructure is concerned, the auditor of the City of Toronto has reported that every construction contract of the City of Toronto is over budget.

      I could go on at length, but my point is made.

      The average francophone in Quebec is a hard working individual who seeks the same things for his family as you would (conspiracy theories aside). Instead of slandering them, try a mature approach to a serious subject.

    14. John Krug - What I find pathetic is how you jump on an example I made and blow it way out of proportion. I do in fact see many similarities between the tip toeing around Israel and the tip toeing around Quebec. Both states are very quick to throw around the racism card whenever anybody criticizes them and you obviously are using the same tactic. I would say that you need to grow a much thicker skin..Please dont prove my point and start howling that I am an snt-semite..thats just too easy..please..

      And please spare me the 'its the same in other provinces"..thats a total copout, The shenanigans that go in Montreal are way way beyond any corruption in Ontario. Rob Ford get kicked out because of 3000 dollars he amassed for his football pales in comparison. The scandals and mismanagement pale in comparison. The numbers in Quebec are staggering..the average cost overrun is 78 percent in Quebec with some being 200-300 percent over. I have never seen numbers like that anywhere and on a consistent basis.
      We pay 30 percent more for construction than anywhere else. How many more examples of corruption do you need before you stick your head out of the sand and say "we have a serious problem".

      Blowing your self-righteous horn is not going to make the truth go away and the hard cold truth is that this city is a cesspool for dishonesty, corruption, waste and abuse..prove me otherwise..

    15. complicated,

      With respect to Israel, there are approximately 195 countries in the world, yet you feel compelled to work Israel into your comments. We both know why you do it, despite your attempt to portray yourself as a victim.

      With respect to corruption, I never said that there was not a great deal of corruption in Quebec. My point was that there was as much or more corruption elsewhere and I mentioned Ontario by way of example. You mentioned the situation with Rob Ford. This is utterly irrelevant.You appear to be unfamiliar with the well-known scandals in Ontario, such as, among others, the Ornge scandal and also the political decision to cancel power plants in Oakville and Mississauga for the sake of winning seats in the election. The latter decision is the real reason why McGuinty resigned because, despite the efforts of the Liberals to hide the true facts, that political decision will cost in excess of a billion dollars in cancellation fees.

      You should re-read my comment about corruption as it is obvious that you did not absorb it. In particular, read my second sentence again. You are referring to corruption that has come to public attention. I was referring in my second sentence to below the radar corruption of the power structure. One difference between your sources and mine is that your sources are the media while mine with respect to below the radar corruption of the power structure are not.

    16. Honestly Israel is the poster child for countries that least in North American and Europe seem to always have to tiptoe around for fears of being branded anti-semetic. I honestly cant think of a better example..Quebec uses a similar strategy but goes further with the threats of seperation.
      I never said there was no corruption elsewhere..but the scale here in Montreal is incredible. Have you listened to the Charbonneau commission?? And once again there are so many examples as I noted of people abusing their status and power that its a perfect breeding ground for widespread corruption. Just looking at most peoples any other city there would be way more outrage..many people just shrug their shoulders or say that it happens everywhere. The real problem is that so many people dont seem that bothered by it..what does that tell you about the culture in this city?? With this type of prevailing attitude it will just need need people marching on the streets.
      We can get 100,000 students marching on the streets for months over 300 dollar increase in tuition fees but cant get a few hundred people to march on the streets about the massive corruption..pretty sad and very telling.

    17. There is a very good reason people tiptoe with fear about being branded anti-semitic when they criticize Israel. Because it usually IS anti-semetic, as is your comparison between Quebec and Israel. The U.S. State Department and the British Government have both declared that it IS anti-semitic to criticize Israel when the criticism is unfair and out of proportion. When Israel is looked at fairly, it is one of the most democratic countries in the world with incredibly reasonable policies. They are NOT the cause of the violence-fanaticism is the cause of the violence. Israel did not steal the land. They negotiated it through political processes. There is not the widespread and institutionally accepted corruption in Israel as there is in Quebec. You are an anti-semite, sir. Perhaps you should read the history of the region, and not just respond to your underlying prejudices.

    EDITOR, before you go knocking the English school board you should check it out. All the chairmen and vice-chairsmen are Italian. So don't go knocking the English community for the sins of others. Other
    cities and school boards don't have our problem because things are run by English people. Ed

    1. Exactly, it's them not us

    2. Wow! Kudos on not even bothering to mask your saccharinely bigoted and tribal anglo-supremacist bias. When the separatists and their hypocritical francophone acolytes distinguish among different groups of Quebecers on the basis of ethnicity, we rightly call them divisive. There are the wholesome "vrais Québécois" and "les autres"... it's so very comforting to read your parallel usage contrasting the presumably real "English people" and sinful mongrel "others" who sully what would otherwise be pristine and august anglo institutions.

      Let me guess, Ed: when you run something, it's called being honest and responsible. When the Italians, Jews, and others do it, they're just being... ethnic.

  17. Yes its obvious how corrupt, devious, slimy Kebec is but what should really concern people is that the same thing is going on all across the country since Trudeau and his gang of anti -English language bigots arrived in Ottawa in the 1960’s. They have been spreading this same type of tax and spend, big government mentality all across the country for decades.

    Ottawa a mess. Toronto is a mess. Just go look at all the debt mounting as the french are grossly over represented in all government (police, hospitals, teaching, lawyers…) departments and jobs.

    Federal debt is now over 600 billion, Ontario debt is now over 267 billion…all following Kebecs lead, nice eh???

    We know Kebec is a basket case, a have not heavily, in debt, racist (bills 22, 178, 101…) province, but people should be really paying attention to rest of the country before we all go broke, all in the same of bilingualism (code for french)

    Poor Kebec, poor Canada.

  18. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 4:55:00 PM EST

    Payback can be a bitch...
    Quebec's National Hero, the true Son of la belle province and inspiration for a new generation of leeches, Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois, uber communist and best friend of Quebekistan's unions... sentenced to 120 hours of community service.
    D'oh he'll work for the PQ for a month....

    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    2. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 5:13:00 PM EST

      This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    3. Atta boy...Un cas de rage au clavier.

    4. The real problem is the criminal record. Try getting in the USA after a conviction like that, Good luck....

    5. Les vrais crosseurs comme Tremblay, Marcotte, Vaillancourt vont en faire combien d'heures de travaux communautaires?

    6. Zéro.

      Le petit gibier avec convictions politiques est une proie facile pour notre système de justice lourd et inefficace,dont l'agent 728 est un des dignes représentants.

  19. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 6:27:00 PM EST

    There is 100 more times culture in Reykjavik, Dubai or Osaka than in Montreal.
    I know: I experienced all four cities.

    1. Plus je lis vos commentaires plus je doute que vous ayez même terminé votre secondaire.
      Certaines espèces d'oiseaux voyagent plus que vous et pourtant...

    2. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 6:58:00 PM EST

      Moi je ne te connais pas.
      Par contre je sais que tu n'as jamais quitte ton petit quebekistan.

    3. Culture is not tangible. It's not better or worse, it's only different

    4. Faux,j'ai déjà visité le pays voisin,le canada et son indéfinissable culture.

    5. Notre ami est un individu évidemment brainwashé par les petits dretteux frustrés et qui semble plutôt impressionné par la quantité que par la qualité.Cette petite droite minable du Québec constituée d'idiots sans culture croyant être ouverts sur le monde avec leur mentalité de comptable.

    6. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:34:00 PM EST

      Bin oui, t'es un petit rien.
      Restes au quebekistan, ta patrie.
      Le royaume de la corruption, des taxes pi de la culture subventionnee par Ottawa.
      Ton chum Biz de loco conass a dit qu'il n'avait aucun probleme avec un cheque avec une fleur d'erable. Il est un b.s. de la culture subventionnee.
      Quand ta culture a besoin d'argent c'est parce que ta culture c'est de la marde.

    7. ...une fleur d'erable ?

      Non,une feuille de lys :)

    8. Quebecois culture is S.R and many Quebecois wet dreams. But it's very subjective! If you ask people in Azistan, they will say their culture is the best. Why don't you guys brag about something more objective such as the leading welfare industry?

    9. Do everyone a favour and never, ever visit Canada again. We can do without the likes of you anywhere other than your basement.

    10. S.R.,

      "brainwashe"? Lavage de cerveau, n'est ce pas? Avez-vous recu votre certificat d'attestation en francais?

  20. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:30:00 PM EST

    Une seule question. N'importe qui me repondre:
    Pourquoi jamais de bonnes nouvelles au sujet du quebec?
    Pourquoi aucuns investissements au quebec?

    1. Quelles sont les bonnes nouvelles en provenance du canada?

    2. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:38:00 PM EST

      "Quelles sont les bonnes nouvelles en provenance du canada?"

      De la perequation pour toi!!!!
      Avec du cash de l'Alberta!!!
      Une gang de redneck qui te supporte!!!

    3. S.R

      All I know is that you and your type, represent the ultimate garbage in our society.
      No matter what you do, no matter what laws are pushed by PQ, it's a question of time until Quebec takes it's own place back in Canada. Competitive and prosper...
      Don't worry, we'll not going to throw you out, like you would do with us.

    4. Klaatu speak for yourself, (and by the way, you're too kind), I throw him the hell out in a new york minute!! Him and the bath water LOL

  21. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, December 5, 2012 at 7:49:00 PM EST

    S.R. s'est casse.
    Est-il alle pietinne un drapeau canadien? LOL.
    Le quebekistan vu par une citoyenne, Nathalie Petrowski, qui qualifie son article de "jouissif":
    "Avec la corruption, la commission Charbonneau, les détournements massifs de fonds publics à coup d'enveloppes brunes, de pots de vin, de voyages dans le Sud et de parties de golf en compagnie de ce grand gentleman et humoriste qu'est Vito Rizzuto (sic), les auteurs ne manquaient pas de matière. Même qu'il aurait fallu être franchement sous-doué pour ne pas profiter de toute cette merde pour produire une revue de grand cru."

    Jouissif? Il faut are quebekistanais!!!!!!

  22. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  23. Good article. BRAVO!

    For once, I totally agree with you. French and English Quebeckers are pigs.

    Got it!

  24. Notre feddie de service encore dans mar...Ce même Bernier qui a déjà affirmé publiquement que la loi 101 était inutile.

    Maxime Bernier encore dans l'embarras.

    Quel idiot!

    Apparatchik, Why don't you lose your 'I know more words than thou' attitude and speak English. Get rid of the Thesaurus. Ed

    Your post to me was much better. Simple words get the point across in an understandable way. I enjoy discussion with educated, intelligent gentlemen,
    which is what I thought you were until I read the insults. Ed

    1. Ed I am afraid that Apparatchik is right .After reading some of your blogs you come off as a bigot. Look up Albert Goodwin a good English boy evaded the draft in BC(not that I blame him, I am not in favour of conscription) . It’s hard to be a good human being.

  27. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYThursday, December 6, 2012 at 6:27:00 AM EST

    Marois to tighten bill 101...
    Result= PQ is anti-business.
    Watch for biusinesses to fold, adding unemployed people.

    I love it!!!!

  28. Tant qu'à moi,ce serait tolérance zéro,pas d'anglais dans aucune entreprise.

    Y'aurait-il un lien entre l'augmentation de la corruption et la progression du globish sur notre territoire?Un maire par interim anglo...Hmm

    Une question comme ça.

    1. "Canadian Territory" and don't forget it !!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. S.R. I agree with your suggestion. No problem. The main industry in QC is welfare and people **working** there don't speak English anyway.

  29. Anyone given thought to how to stop the adoption of Bill 14 other than e-mailing our MNA's (if they are in the opposition parties)? I have contacted the Quebec Office of the English Language to ask what they are going to do, if anything. Will post what they respond. Please post if you can think of any other action we can take.

    1. So far Quebec Office of the English Language suggests that we lobby both the CAQ and the Liberals not to pass it but have asked if they have any other ways and means to fight these bigots. Will post if I hear anything else.

    2. I have been informed by the Quebec Office of the English Language that they will be making an announcement shortly about Bill 14. I'm sure it will be on their web site immediately when released.

  30. I genuinely regret it if anyone here found my response to Ed regrettable (or perhaps even worse). However, I will not retract what you may or may not choose to consider my very raw, unfiltered, and harsh response to his recent comments.

    Common sense behooves us to question sweeping generalities, the likes of which are peddled about this site and others of much lesser quality almost hourly. The vast majority of the time, calling into question one point or another with evidence to the contrary is one way to invite and encourage a healthy debate, either on a general philosophy or a specific point. Part of this process is, in my judgment, informed by an ongoing personal and intellectual struggle compelling each of us to “listen to the other side”. At all times and in all places.

    Those of you calling for my head (or simply for my comments to be stricken from existence) would do well to consider rereading the content Ed's comments on this blog. For pseudo-variety, don’t just stick to this specific post, but take a good look back over the past several months. I’m neither so young, Diogenes, as to look naively toward the benevolent future, nor so old as to live much of my life in the cropped and Photoshopped past. I also endorse the intellectually rigorous practice of criticizing the message rather than the messenger -- at least by default. And contrary to the criticism leveled against me by some of you, I encourage any careful and regular participant on a blog like this one to strive toward a similar attitude, irrespective of political orientation.


    1. Some of you might be shocked to learn that my comments were not preliminarily intended as insults. Rather, they were intended to deliberately convey my own gut reaction to what I interpreted as a gratuitous, fanciful, and yes -- delirious set of truthfully selective and factually questionable comments. Ed’s comments, as I read them verbatim, celebrated with seeming impunity the supposed moral, organizational, and ethical superiority of organizations owned or managed by "true English" people, while squarely pointing the blame at the ethnic untermenschen (like me) whose tendency toward incompetence or corruption is explained by my intrinsic (partially) Francophone or (partially) Catholic heritage. Combining these inane comments with several others like them (even taking flak for carefully wording my thoughts!), I got fed up and, in my opinion, rightly interpreted then and sharply denounced them for the bigoted and imbecilic drivel that they are. I even provided counterexamples to illustrate my point of view. I forgot to throw in puritanical New England and the American South, but I’m doing that now.

      Our province is sadly the theater of similar current and historic examples of xenophobic/ethnosupremacist attitudes (on both sides). I should think that a blog that examines Quebec’s many warts from a variously Anglophone, federalist, allophone, center-right perspective would neither invite nor advocate the absolutist comments spewed daily by Ed without leaving intact those expounded by me.

      Doing otherwise would make this site and its pool of participants no better than our nationalist counterparts on other sites, many of whose participants advocate both silly and terrifying things like encouraging Francophones to stay in Montreal while telling Anglophones to leave Quebec. I’m viscerally federalist and favor everybody speaking both languages in Quebec the social harmony as well as the cultural and economic opportunities that this brings. The rising generation of trilingual allophone children (and their enlightened Francophone and Anglophone brethren) is proof to me that this isn’t an unworkable theoretical construct, but rather the lifeblood of the vibrant duality that characterizes the essence of Quebec and, if you thought about it, all of Canada.

      Don’t like what I say? Chances are I don’t like what you’re thinking either. Nobody’s whiter than white in this debate (pardon the pun). Grow some balls, think a little harder about the ramifications of what you're saying, and then fuck off.


    2. Considering the fact that, by Appartachick's standards, James Wolfe's comments are even more reprehensible and unequivocally racist (positing as they do the existence of a Conspiracy of the Elders of Collège Jean-de-Brébeuf), I'm surprise that the (very) late general has yet to receive his tongue lashing. Or are they just too indisputably loopy?

    3. James Wolfe has been dead for two and a half centuries and will continue to be dead.

      The individual posing as the late General is well-known to the Canadian blogosphere and goes by several different aliases. It'd be better if he stuck to a single alias, since his posts are already characterized by frequent copy-paste repetition of his own previous rantings on various forums (including this one). It doesn't really bother me that he regularly calls on us to "go learn our proud, real BNA and UEL history", dislikes "PT" (Pierre-Elliott Trudeau) and "SD" (Stéphane Dion), or that he slant-quotes them out of context, or even that his posts regularly refer to "the province of Kebec", justifying his innovative orthography as the "original native spelling" (I still can't tell which tribe "originally" decided to spell it one way using the alphabet the White man only eventually taught them, but I digress). It's not so much the substance that I agree or disagree with as it is the style that I abhor. Do a search online and you'll see what I mean.

      What it comes down to is this: if this fellow's going to be so uncommitted as to (verbatim!) just copy-paste his own stuff as a routine matter of course, I don't think I should have to spend my time reading, much less responding to it. It's reassuring to see he's consistent with his own opinion, but phoning it in to the extent that he does smacks of plain laziness. For all of Sauga's repetitiveness what with his life story with respect to Quebec that I could recite to you backwards, or S.R's one-liners which time and again cause me to wonder whether he fell down head first off the Tree of Knowledge, "Wolfe's style" is perhaps the most disconcertingly perverse of them all because of the deeper implications behind the social contract he imposes onto us. Seriously now, which sane individual do you know who regularly engages in a meaningful dialogue with a tape recording?

      I've thought about this one, Calgarian, and it is why I'm not leaving a message at the beep.

    4. " which time and again cause me to wonder whether he fell down head first off the Tree of Knowledge."

      Excellent,j'admire les personnes qui maîtrise l'art de l'allégorie et je vous le concède Apparatchik,vous avez ce talent.


    5. Bien heureux de pouvoir vous égayer ainsi.

  31. *******A STATEMENT FORM THE EDITOR*******
    As you know it is the policy of this blog that the Comments Section belongs to the readers, not the Editor.
    I try not to pick sides, it discourages people from participating and that is why, even when I see opinions I loathe, I rarely interfere.

    I've been asked within this comment thread why I did not remove a comment made by Apparatchick that was deemed inappropriate by another, worthy of censure.

    I don't agree for the following reasons;

    The comment which generated the debate was in response to one made by "ED" who made some controversial points concerning race and culture.
    Again, I will not offer an opinion.
    It generate a fiery response from Apparatchick who took issue and did use a salty metaphor, but which underscored his extreme discontent.
    The 'insult' was not gratuitous, it was part of a post that demonstrated clearly his extreme displeasure at the targeted comment and commentor.

    Again I take no journalistic position.

    Those who read the comments here need to have a thick skin and can expect to get whacked every now and then.
    "ED" is a big boy and understands the rules, takes it with a grain of salt and soldiers on.
    Good on him.

    What is not allowed is a completely gratuitous insult without any redeeming value such as these;

    "The editor is a piece of sh*T and I hope he drops dead!"
    "Joe Blow is an asshole"
    "Jane Doe is stupid beyond belief"

    Those type of comments won't be published......

    1. Sorry about the typos, I'm not re-writing the comment.......

    2. I appreciate the understanding which led to your position described above.

  32. Nos amis,les anglais:

    Carte électorale : la communauté acadienne de la Nouvelle-Écosse réagit

    One thing I have always tried to do is comment on life as I've actually seen it. In Verdun, I recall Gordie, Alfred Ernie Bobby and Drew; their parents would never stand for dishonesty by their sons. On the other hand
    Marcel Jacques Gillaume Robert were always on the look out to make a quick buck, mostly for cigarettes. These are facts. I lived them. When I speak about the Protestant school board being completely controlled by Italians, this is a fact. Googleit in and check for yourself before you scream bigot. Anyway calling me bigoted does not bother me. I know in my heart that I have nothing against French people, I simply state what I see in this world. Ed

  34. Ed - I don't think you're a bigot - you're only stating what you see and feel is right and what you've lived - we all have a right to do that. The problem most of us have is ensuring that the written word is accurately reflecting our feelings and, that, at times can be difficult. -

  35. I don`t know where your readers get the idea that Alberta is free of corruption but in my opinion, we have the most corrupt province except we are only just now learning about the backroom deals, the corporate support of the Tories during and after elections;the subversion of electoral donation rules, and the subsequent lovefest of government for our corporate and oil masters in the province.

    I think we are only now learning about these legalized forms of corruption such as the Katz donations to the Progressive Conservative Party, the many infractions of electoral donation rules by public bodies such as ATB Financial because the oil masters want to replace the Progressive Conservative Party oil front for the Wildrose Party oil front in Alberta.

    I haven`t yet had a look at the municipal government in Edmonton and Calgary but no doubt Mafia type construction deals may also be found there. It is hard to find out because the government at all levels in Alberta operate like the 1984 state would, and will not give out written information that is useful but is instead the spun candyfloss of television. We are supplied this garbage by the publicity folks that the government at the provincial level have recently hired in communications. These spin doctor folks are paid on the public dime and do the work of election campaigning in between elections. They are sort of like the folks Harper and crew have hired to do their spinning of straw into gold on the economic front (think about all those expensive glowing advertisements for Canada`s action plan that we are paying for to be indoctrinated with).

    It is hard to get more than the beautiful surface in Alberta because most folks are too scared, too stupid or too well paid by the folks in power to do anything more than mutter mutter about being screwed in the arse (sorry the public purse) in the privacy of their own homes. And if you cannot get information from anyone in the media either, because the press is also stupid and panders to the provincial government well then you have to go look for information yourself and become a citizen journalist and write on a blog.

    Because of oil, I suspect that more corruption cases exist in Alberta but we just do not get to hear about them.

    And if we elect the Wildrosies the next time around (as no doubt the stupid citizens will) expect this corruption business to get more evident as we will have Harperville not only in Ottawa but in Alberta.

    I don`t think we will ever get rid of the corruption but certainly electing a new government every four years is a good way to prevent the gravy train from getting more and more lucrative as it has been for the Tories in Alberta for the past forty years. We might be able to get rid of Harperville in the next election but because Albertans have somehow been brainwashed to think that the right and the far right will save their financial bacon while screwing them right left and center, we will have the same comedy of corruption and poor governance until the oil is gone.

    What we will have left is an environmental disaster in the tarsands where the tailings ponds will be our tourist attraction, the drinking water will be fracked to poisons and our grandchildren will be paying for our lack of diligence as citizens.

    But there you go. What is true in Quebec is true in Alberta as well. It is the citizen who must do the work that our governments at all levels will not do.

  36. Quebec Corruption may Transcends Language, Ethnicity and Class, but it sure is a federalist bastion!!!

  37. Canada needs Quebec more than Quebec needs Canada.