Feds Target Little Telecom

Federal regulators are threatening $15,000 fines against directors of six small telecom companies for alleged technical breaches of the Telecommunications Act. The six were cited for failing to pay a $600 registration fee with a little-known ombudsman mandated to take customer complaints: "That's a lot of money."

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“Art Of The Impossible –“

Poet Shai Ben-Shalom, an Israeli-born biologist, examines current events in the Blacklock’s tradition each and every Sunday: ” Alberta gives a cold shoulder to Justin Trudeau. Not a single seat in 2019 federal elections…”

Book Review: Fit, Young & Fascist

Everything was political in the 1930s. It was a haunted decade that “almost made me a Communist,” as one Alberta premier put it.

Strong, Beautiful and Modern captures the oddest political expression of all, the campaign for physical culture. Archival images of mass synchronized exercises of the Pro-Rec league in the parks of Vancouver bear an unnerving resemblance to parades of bronzed youth so popular in Nazi Germany and Stalin’s Russia.

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Grumble Over Labour Board

The Department of Employment in Access To Information memos complains a federal labour board is too liberal in upholding grievances by problem employees. Managers were told to protect themselves when disciplining staff for misconduct from absenteeism to surfing inappropriate internet sites: "Cases we deem as solid can still fail."

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Airbnb Ban Is OK: Tribunal

Condo boards may outlaw Airbnb rentals, the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal has ruled. Airbnb accounts for ten percent of hotel room sales in Vancouver and Toronto, according to the Department of Finance: "There is a strong incentive for property owners."

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Prosecutors Get Counseling

The Public Prosecution Service yesterday said it will provide free counseling for staff lawyers traumatized by graphic evidence in criminal cases. The Commons justice committee earlier recommended similar aid for jurors exposed to gruesome testimony and crime scene videos: "Vicarious trauma is an ongoing issue."

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Court Rules Dead Is Dead

The Supreme Court yesterday in a Halloween judgment ruled a "life pension" could not be paid to a dead man. The decision came in the case of $497,333 in payments to the bank account of a retiree who vanished: "Death is an event with important legal significance."

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Gov’t Fly-A-Chef Program

The Department of Foreign Affairs used an obscure fund to fly Canadian chefs around the world to prepare meals for diplomats, VIPs and foreign media, according to Access To Information records. One manager justified the program as proof Canada is a “progressive nation”.

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Taxes “Painfully Complex”

The British Columbia Court of Appeal yesterday ruled the Income Tax Act is so complicated, taxpayers must hire lawyers to correct mistakes. The Court described provisions of the 3,281-page Act as “painfully complex”.

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Will Force Pharmacare Vote

The minority Parliament will be compelled to vote on a pharmacare bill, New Democrat leader Jagmeet Singh yesterday told reporters. Singh said his caucus will introduce a bill advocating universal drug coverage once the Commons is sworn in: "We need to do it."

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OK To Ask Questions: Court

An Ontario company that claimed an Access To Information request was so aggressive it was defamatory has been ordered to pay $15,000 in costs to the questioner. Canadians have a Charter right to simply ask questions, ruled Ontario Superior Court: "Legislation already provides checks and balances."

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Fear Attack On Power Plants

Federal regulators yesterday said they will “update” rules on deployment of armed guards to protect nuclear power plants. The proposal follows Parliament’s passage of a Nuclear Terrorism Act with lengthy prison sentences for anyone threatening a plant: "Various schemes are being examined."

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Senator Endorses Secession

A Liberal-appointed senator is endorsing secession – for Cape Breton. The island should gain home rule from Nova Scotia as Canada’s 11th province or some other autonomous region, the lawmaker wrote in a commentary published by the Senate: "Perhaps we could become Canada’s fourth territory."

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Gov’t Scrounging For Fees

Transport Canada yesterday served notice of more fee increases at maritime ports. The Coast Guard earlier warned of a “larger increase” on shippers in 2020. Parliament has not balanced a budget in eleven years: 'It will determine how increasing fees or establishing new ones would impact users.'

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Denied A Run So He Sued

A parliamentary employee denied permission to run for a Commons seat is asking that a federal judge cite managers for breaching his Charter rights. Supervisors said the research analyst was free to quit his job: 'It would seemingly apply to all employees.'

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