Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Why the Fake Scandal Is Just A Grotesque Farce



I'm still having a really hard time trying to make sense of that fake scandal, the one that has Andrew Scheer's Cons and their media stooges in a feverish state, and practically quivering with excitement.    

Is it an attempted very Canadian coup, fronted by Andrew Scheer and his Trumpling Cons, and funded with dark money from those who want to end the war on climate change, and carve up our medicare system?

Or in the grey grimness of this frozen February, is it just a mass outbreak of senile psychosis?

But today, at last, the ugly truth hit me like a rubber bullet between the eyes, and it was horrible. 




For this fake scandal is nothing more than a grotesque political farce. 

Federal Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion will investigate claims that the Prime Minister's Office pressured former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould to help Quebec engineering firm SNC-Lavalin avoid criminal prosecution. 

Brought to you by our shabby shuffling Con media, the creepy Andrew Scheer, and believe it or not, by the NDP's Nathan Cullen. 

A political farce where the new Ethics Commissioner gets to play ringmaster in a Con clown circus, thanks to an anonymous source in a Globe story.

Even though there are almost certainly no ethical violations for the Commish to rule on, which will make it little more than a scene out of Alice in Wonderland.



Especially since, as Thomas Walkom points out, politicians in this country have in certain cases the right to influence judicial proceedings. 

Forgotten in the furor over whether Justin Trudeau’s office meddled in a court case is an inconvenient fact: In certain instances, Canadian law allows politicians to play a pivotal role in judicial proceedings. This may be one of those instances. 

In other words, it wouldn’t have been improper or illegal for Wilson-Raybould to demand that her prosecutors work out a plea bargain with SNC-Lavalin rather than take it to trial. She would have had to explain herself publicly. But there is an arguable case that can be made for giving a break to a company that employs thousands in Quebec.

And Trudeau has not only the right but the duty to try to save Canada's premier engineering firm, that employs 50,000 people all over the world, including 9,000 in Canada.

Especially since the two men responsible for that bribery corruption case in Libya left the company seven years ago. One has already spent more than two years in jail, the other is being prosecuted by the RCMP.

And a remediation agreement would punish the company with large fines, but spare it from being barred from bidding on federal contracts for a decade, which in its present state would almost certainly destroy it. 



Which is absurd, since as Neil MacDonald who is no friend of the Trudeau government points out, in the Middle East bribery is the price of doing business. 

Having worked in the Middle East for several years, I regard baksheesh as the lubricant it is. Either you pay it, or you don't get anything done. It's about that simple.

And a remediation deal makes absolute sense.

Why in heaven's name would the government want to hobble a huge Quebec employer, eliminating all sorts of jobs, because, like everybody else who does business in the Middle East, it paid bribes?

In Quebec they seem to get it. With Ariane Krol, an editorial writer at La Presse, suggesting that the deal is only common sense.  

The Canadian justice system must send the company a strong message, that's for sure. But there is no need to decapitate it, to act as a deterrent. There is no need to inflict upon it a trial that would continue for years, threaten the future of the company, and the employees who work for it today, who had nothing to do with what happened.

While the columnist Yves Boisvert looks at how criminal companies should be punished, and argues that Trudeau’s obvious wish to impose a remediation agreement on the weakened SNC-Lavalin is the smart way to proceed. 

In short, as long as we do not know more, I almost want to say that the Prime Minister's Office has done the right thing so that SNC-Lavalin is punished in the most intelligent way possible. 

It is not a free pass, it is a mechanism for public money collection, ethical recovery of a business and economic and strategic preservation that better serves the national interest.


But unfortunately in English Canada, our ghastly Con media seems intent on turning this fake scandal into something bigger than it is, just to pleasure their corporate bosses.



For this, from the Con fluffer John Ibbitson, is totally absurd. 

The Prime Minister and his advisers will either clear Ms. Wilson-Raybould to offer her version of events, while also offering their own understanding of what happened, or the Liberals will pay the price at the next election. The choice is that simple.

When most Canadians couldn't care less about that fake scandal, which had no effect  on the course of events, and aren't about to trust the creepy Andrew Scheer for the reasons I mentioned on Twitter.
For that is what the next election will come down to:

A choice between a creepy Con who would tear this country apart and turn it into a Trump-like nightmare.



And a real Canadian leader we can count on to stand up for our country and its precious values.

Which really amounts to no choice at all.

This fake scandal is a grotesque farce, and the sooner it's over the better...

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UPDATE: Jody Wilson-Raybould resigns.  Good, her role in this grotesque farce is over. Now can we please move on...

36 comments:

  1. Anonymous12:47 PM

    Thank you again Simon for calling this fake scandal a farce. The resignation of Jody Wilson-Raybould is only more proof of that. The Cons and the Con media must be freaking out. But as you say in your post most Canadians don’t give a damn.

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    1. Hi anon...You're welcome. I just had to write something after the way the Con media has been going after our decent Prime Minister like a pack of rabid hyenas. Jody Wilson-Raybould may have man outstanding qualities, but the media is trying to turn her into a saint and Trudeau into a devil, and that absolutely absurd....

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  2. Anonymous12:50 PM

    Politics is a blood sport. It always has been. It always will be.

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    1. Hi anon...Maybe it is, but the hyper partisanship the Cons introduced to Canada is poisoning this country and needs to be reined in...

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  3. Prosecuting a Canadian company for alleged bribery that occurred in a country that Canada, under Stephen Harper, has since, with allies, illegally militarily destroyed and left in chaos seems to be taking the "rule of law" a little bit too far.
    Smugly far in my opinion.
    And to create a political scandal about interfering in that spurious case makes me wonder where the real action is.
    Canada "meddling" in another country's affairs perhaps?
    As regards Ms. Wilson Raybold's resignation I think she is leaving with her head held high.
    Someone with integrity, which is more than can be said about the current holder of the foreign affairs portfolio!
    Canadians seem to think that our country is a paragon of virtue.
    Like the US Republicans and Democrats, there is not much now to separate Canada's Liberals and Conservatives.
    The religious right vote perhaps.
    Racism and Sikhphobia will prevent the NDP from gaining any ground.
    Don't forget that we are the "Great White North".
    Perhaps we should be called the "Great Smug North" looking inward like a bunch of muskoxen.


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    1. Hi hinofan...you seem unusually bitter, and down on our country. I don't expect perfection from any country. But we have it better here than most countries in the world. And quite frankly if you think the racist, misogynistic, and homophobic Scheer Cons are the same as the Liberals I see no point in arguing with you...

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  4. Anonymous1:12 PM

    As Neil MacDonald says, the idea of hobbling or destroying SNC-Lavalin for bribing some people in Libya makes no sense. The guilty have been punished, the company can be fined, but why should it’s present day employees and their families be thrown into the street for something they had nothing to do with. Why is the Quebec media so much more sophisticated than those in the rest of Canada?

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    1. Anonymous4:34 PM

      Gimme a break! SNC-Lavalin is right up there with Bechtel, KBR and Halliburton in the pantheon of the world's corrupt companies. Who can forget Harper's buddy Arthur Porter rotting to death in a Panama jail on fraud charges, after he allegedly took a $22.5 million kick-back on the construction of the McGill University Health Centre's new hospital. SNC-Lavalin was on the other side of that little scheme.

      I'm appalled that Canada hasn't the guts to ban the company from bidding on government projects. The "too big to fail" argument is complete garbage. There are other Canadian engineering companies that would grow if they weren't in the shade of that rotten, festering company.

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    2. Hi anon@ 11:12 PM...I don't know why the Quebec media are less hysterical and less Con than the shabby shoe shufflers in English Canada. It must be that distinct society thing. But MacDonald is right , bribery is a fact of life in many countries, and unfortunately our companies are forced to pay up as the price of doing business. In the case of SNC-Lavalin they have purged their rotten apples, they are going after the corrupt ones, and deserve a chance to survive instead of being condemned to death by some zealot in the Justice system...

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  5. Anonymous1:23 PM

    Have you seen the latest Nanos poll? No wonder Scheer is shitting himself. It seems he’s going to have to get a platform for himself, instead of relying on one fake scandal after the other.

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    1. Hi anon...yes I have and I think I'll write something about that poll and the recent Leger one, because both I believe suggest that Scheer's support is starting to be nibbled away by Bernier's People Party. And if that trend continues it could be the end of the Cons...

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  6. Jackie Blue1:39 PM

    Talk about doublethink. Maybe QuΓ©bec should have separated. Canada looks more and more schizophrenic by the day. Let the Saskquatchestan bastard freeze in the dark.

    Meanwhile, not sure if you've seen this horrifying CBC report but it gives one pause about the M$M stooges running with "anonymous leakers" as gospel truth. Remember "but her emails"? Like I said, it's Trughazi. Canada's "just not ready" for a fake-news election. Nice RebelCon media though.

    https://twitter.com/CBCAlerts/status/1095285141990240257

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    1. Hi Jackie...yes I saw that, and although I knew it was going on, I was surprised at the scale of the operation. Those traitor Cons will have to be watched closely during the election campaign. Although with the Con media we have it will be hard to tell the difference between the stuff they produce, and the Russian invasion...πŸ’‚πŸ» But rest assured we will be ready...

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  7. Anonymous2:25 PM

    Great post Simon. Disseminating the facts from the bullshit is an unenviable task but you did it and the perspective you've provided is not only plausible it was the right thing to do. To hell with Scheer and his fellow Con pearl clutching mouthpieces who are so aghast and in a complete, utter tizzy over this. They are so "virtuous" yet hungry for a scandal, anything to bring down JT and it is really getting disturbing. So what if thousands of jobs are lost as long as it happens on JT's watch, right Cons? The real scandal is how Scheer would use this for political advantage regardless of the human cost. It's all about getting the top job that Scheer so desperately covets but will never attain for he too, along with this "scandal", is a grotesque farce.
    JD

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    1. Hi JD...Thank you, I'm glad you liked it. I must admit I found writing it exhausting for having to research Deferred Prosecution Agreements had smoke pouring out of my ears. But in the end I thought it was worth it, if only because I can now take on the bullshit being put out by our hideous Con media. I haven 't seen anything like it since that fake scandal in India. And now that we are getting close to an election we can't let those bastards get away with it. And yes, I am disgusted by the way the fate of so many workers and their families has been totally ignored, while the media obsesses over legalistic bullshit, and makes Trudeau out to be the villain, instead of the clearly unstable JWR. The bias is reaching epic proportions and it's got to stop. And if the media won't do its job, it will have to be us. Or we will lose our country...

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  8. Anonymous2:36 PM

    And now she has resigned from cabinet. Still a fake scandal? She will crossing the floor next.....it’s coming.....

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    1. Ministers can resign and return to cabinet. Crossing the floor to join a flailing and fading opposition party is not a career-enhancing move.

      Crossing the floor is a pretty fraught move at the best of times.

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    2. Anonymous6:53 PM

      Cross the floor is next. You should read what her father and other First Nations leaders are saying now.

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    3. Jackie Blue7:12 PM

      But how do you know it was even about Lavalin? Because some hack who's known for having lied about an innocent Muslim guy and never learned his lesson reported that someone said so? What about other files she was responsible for or other possible grievances or clashes between JWR and other people in the PMO?

      https://twitter.com/DianeMariePosts/status/1095458504872144896

      Why hang Justin in the court of public opinion when there is no evidence besides he said/she said (or "someone" said)? We get it, you hate him, you're ready to put him in front of a firing squad over hearsay and wild speculation. Obviously Trudeau haters and the knifing media have learned nothing from Benghazi and "emails," or intentionally seek the same outcome. And that, as a certain individual-1 who benefited tremendously (terrifically, incredibly, bigly) from craven media incompetence is fond of saying, is SAD.

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    4. Hi anon@2:36 PM...Her resignation is just another sign that she is fundamentally unstable, and I would give anything to see her cross the floor and prove that she was always a Con. Whatever else she is she is clearly a primadonna and her act is growing tiresome...

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    5. Hi anon @6:53 PM...as I said above, I would stand up and cheer if she crossed the floor.And as for what her father had to say I wasn't impressed either. The way he put down our veterans was absolutely disgusting. It seems that Jody thinks she's too good to take care of those elderly people and that doesn't say much about her...

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  9. Anonymous2:50 PM

    You can hear the air hissing out of the Con balloon,. Jody had her fifteen minutes of fame and now it’s over. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

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  10. Anonymous3:39 PM

    So does Jody Wilson-Raybould think that Veterans Affairs is an insult? Please put in a minister who is honoured to serve our veterans not someone who obviously feels above it.

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    1. Anonymous4:40 PM

      Spare us the fake concern. The minister of veterans affairs doesn't "serve" veterans any more than the minister of sports "serves" athletes.

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    2. Anonymous6:21 PM

      I must have hit a nerve. People like you likely huff and puff about the government’s treatment of vets and then spend the last week shitting on Veterans Affairs.

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    3. Hi anon@6:21PM....Good for you. Don't let those hypocritical Cons get away with murder. The fact is JWR thought she was too good for our veterans, and that's absolutely unforgivable...

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  11. Anonymous3:41 PM

    According to the Cons Trudeau is weak for buying a pipeline expansion project and trying to work within existing law to save jobs, Trudeau also bad for trying to save SNC jobs by doing the same thing. As stated on the Con website whats required is a fearless manly leader willing to create new laws as he sees fit. Simply "build the pipe" by disenfranchising stake holders and enact sweeping federal pipe building powers for the good of the nation. A real manly leader would not pass either/or laws like the Deferred Prosecution Agreement and then try a convince stake holders that it the best the solution in SNC's case. No, he would decide if SNC deserved to live or die and pass a law or direct his carefully chosen puppet attorney general to act accordingly. Hey depending how much money flowed into the Con coffers the law can always be changed or the puppet redirected accordingly. The Cons would have you forget everything history has taught us, and believe this business of trying to reach even a moderate level of consensus and understanding on complex issues must be the sign of a crooked weak leader. Do we really have to go there again?
    RT

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    1. Hi RT...well said. There is nothing Trudeau can do to please those ratty Cons. And it's ironic that they think he shouldn't do anything to save SNC-Lavalin, because they have built a lot of the infrastructure at the Tar Sands. But then as we know Scheer is a nattering nabob of negativity. He has no plans of his own and all he can do is criticize and try to tear Trudeau down. I heard him give a 30 second description of how he intends to fight climate change without a carbon tax, and it sounded like a ten-year-old's class project. The guy is just not ready, and in my opinion never will be...

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  12. Me thinks Jody Wilson R has ambitions. If you want a friend get a dog.

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    1. Anonymous4:55 PM

      I was going to post a comment on the Kinsella blog but it has turned into Blogging Tories. I give up on that place.
      Anonymous-A

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    2. Hi Steve...oh she's ambitious, and there's nothing wrong with that. But I want a dog more than she does..πŸ˜‰

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    3. e.a.f.5:01 PM

      Kinsella won't "print" any comments he disagrees with. Discovered that when I criticized the former Premier of B.C. Christy Clark and one of the women who worked for her. Kinsella has his sacred cows, no pun intended, and doesn't take well to criticism. Don't bother with his blog any more either. Much more interesting to read Northern Reflections out of Ontario.

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  13. John B.6:27 PM

    Does Canada forbid foreign companies that have employed bribery as a business practice from bidding on government contracts?

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    1. Hi John...if they are convicted of bribery they must pay heavy fines, and are banned from applying for government contracts for ten years. Although SNC-Lavalin is Canada's biggest engineering firm its troubles have weakened it, and a ten-year ban would finish it off...

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  14. The Royal Conservative Mounted Police have even managed to chime in with an investigation, thus allowing the Cons to say under police investigation.

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    1. e.a.f.5:02 PM

      I'm sure the RCMP would love to have the Cons back in office. Look at the 9 yrs the Cons were in office and how badly the RCMP ran amuk out in B.C. for starters.

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