The Royal Society of Canada will reconsider its decision to appoint a University of Ottawa professor and former Health Canada employee to chair a wireless research panel due to a potential conflict-of-interest, the Canadian Medical Association Journal says. Read more…
If you’re wondering how only 8 of 686 would-be candidates were allowed to run in Iran’s presidential election, it’s very simple. The Guardian Council of the Constitution approves candidates… or doesn’t if they’re not sufficiently keen on wholesome principles like death to Israel and death to the Great Satan and an Iranian nuclear bomb and such like. And where does this GCC come from? Again, very simple. The Supreme Leader chooses six members while the Parliament (whose legislation it can veto and whose candidates it can also veto) chooses six from a list prepared by the head of the Judicial Power who is (but you saw this coming) appointed by the Supreme Leader.
Even if you do get to be President, you don’t run the country. That’s the Supreme Leader, chosen by the Assembly of Experts (directly elected from candidates approved by… itself, and vetted by that darn Guardian Council again). Oh, and the Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution can create things that aren’t laws but are binding and can’t be overruled except by the Supreme Leader… who appoints the SCCR personally.
Which raises the vexed question: Even if you could run for president of Iran, or for its parliament, why would you want to? That so many people would vote for a fake moderate anyway (a “pragmatist” according to the New York Times and we all know what that means) suggests most Iranians wish this question had a better answer than it does. But those who rule them for their own benefit without their genuine consent probably don’t care. Certainly this tangled self-perpetuating institutional framework suggests they don’t.
So-called moderate Hassan Rohani has won Iran’s presidential election according to the Islamist theocracy’s interior minister, but that doesn’t change Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird’s view of Iran’s government.
“Of the 686 candidates who tried to register as presidential candidates, only eight were permitted to run,” Baird said in a statement Saturday. “With Iran’s opposition leaders in jail and their supporters having been denied the ability to co-ordinate since June 2009, none of the eight regime-approved candidates represents a real alternative for Iranian voters.”
He also said whoever replaces the holocaust-denying, outgoing President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad “will simply be another of Ayatollah Khamenei’s puppets in the tragic and dangerous pantomime that is life for all Iranians.” Read more…
An Ontario NDP MP is picking up where a Tory private member’s bill left off to call for harsher punishments against those who assault transit drivers. Read more…
Debby Simms, a spokeswoman for Independent Sen. Patrick Brazeau, put together this letter. She says false information has been reported in the media.
The office of Independent Algonquin Senator Patrick Brazeau is greatly encouraged that Senator Lebreton has asked the Auditor General of Canada to conduct a comprehensive review of Senate practices.
It is only through an apolitical, objective analysis by a credible external authority that the facts around Senate business practices will become known.
Although Deloitte was originally engaged to act as an independent auditor, it is apparent that some unorthodox business practices clouded that process, leaving Canadians unclear on what Deloitte actually found.
In the specific case of Senator Brazeau’s housing claims the facts are as follows:
1. Prior to submitting any housing claims, Senator Brazeau’s eligibility to claim was confirmed by the Director of Finance in writing.
2. Senator Brazeau fully and completely cooperated with Deloitte and with the Board of Internal Economy. At no time during the course of these interviews was any suggestion of any impropriety made.
3. In their final report, Deloitte found all paperwork to be in order. They determined that the Senate’s four-indicator test for primary residence was fully met.
4. Deloitte also found Senate policy to be suffering from some internal incoherence and lack of clarity.
5. Rather than attending immediately to that policy incoherence, the closed-door Board of Internal Economy took the unusual step of developing and retroactively imposing a new rule regarding housing. To date they have not explained what this new rule is or how Senator Brazeau has broken it. Obviously, inventing new policies behind closed doors and imposing sanctions retroactively is a business practice that is unacceptable by any modern standard.
6. Senator Brazeau sent a letter to all Senators asking them to allow him to participate in the debate on his housing claims. This request was ignored and the Senate voted to accept the Board of Internal Economy’s sanctions without ever having heard from the Senator himself.
It is for these reasons that this office hopes that the Auditor General will not only review all claims and expenses line by line, but also examine travel and housing policies and give in-depth attention to the way in which the Senate handles issues of suspected non-compliance. One does not want to suggest there has been any malicious intent here. But perhaps in their zeal to protect themselves and the reputation of the Senate as a whole in the face of negative media attention, they forgot the principles of due process and basic fairness upon which this great country rest.
Office of Independent Algonquin Senator Patrick Brazeau