Archive for May 16th, 2012

COLUMN: Gunter – Property rights need protection in Canada

- May 16th, 2012

Property rights and wrongs

by Lorne Gunter

In 1999, the Manitoba Court of Appeal upheld the constitutionality of the Canadian Wheat Board. In their decision, the judges said Ottawa could force Prairie farmers to sell their grain only to the board because “The right to ‘enjoyment of property’ is not a constitutionally protected, fundamental part of Canadian society.”

It seemed a preposterous statement from a Canadian court. If nothing else, Canadians inherited 800 years of common-law protection of personal property through our British legal heritage.

But while ideologically mistaken, the Manitoba court wasn’t legally wrong. For nearly 80 years, governments and courts in Canada have been chipping away at property rights in the name of the “common good.” Now there are almost no limits on governments’ ability to confiscate your land or to dictate to you how you may use your land, even if the government-approved uses reduce the value of your land.

And while every province has legal guidelines dictating what compensation must be paid for expropriated land, any government wanting to avoid paying merely needs to state that it will not pay in the bill authorizing the confiscation.Then it’s off the hook.

As a new book by Calgary researcher Mark Milke points out, the situation here has become so dire that “Canada now has the weakest property rights among Western countries.” Read more…

VIDEO: Jonah Goldberg, young people are so freaking stupid

- May 16th, 2012

Thomas Mulcair hates development, unless it is in Quebec

- May 16th, 2012

Kate over at Small Dead Animals links into this story from Sun News about NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair’s hatred for the oil industry.

She juxtaposes this comment:

“We know that it is impossible to maintain the current manner of tarsands development without seriously affecting the health of human beings – and without destroying important ecosystems forever. He (Harper) is currently placing the largest ecological and economic debt imaginable in the backpacks of our children and grandchildren,”

Freemont mine

The lunar like scenery of the Freemont mine in northern Qubec where iron ore is extracted for world markets.

Against this news out of Quebec:

“Huge mining giants from Europe, China and India are pumping billions of dollars into virgin territories in far northern Quebec in a race to satisfy a growing global appetite for iron ore”

Quebec let’s remember flooded huge parts of its province to build the James Bay dam system to provide hydro-electricity.

Mulcair has been hitting hard at the Western provinces and blaming them for the drop in manufacturing in Ontario and Quebec. That has led BC’s Christie Clark, Alberta’ Alison Redford and Saskatchewan’s Brad Wall to all counter Mulcair who then dismissed the premiers as Harper’s messengers.

Brad Wall tweeted out at Mulcair, we’ll see if he listens. I think this all answers Kinsella’s question as to why the Conservatives haven’t attacked Mulcair.

Wall tweet 2

Wall tweet

Wall tweet 3

VIDEO: Lilley and Harley Sims discuss how awsome the Avengers movie is

- May 16th, 2012