Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 01, 2019

Justin Trudeau Is Finished

The Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is finished. A long simmering scandal did him in.


Between 2001 and 2011 the Canadian construction and engineering company SNC-Lavalin bribed officials in Libya with tens of millions to get contracts in that country. In 2015 the company was charged by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada. It tried to avoid a trial and argued instead for a negotiated settlement since it had cleaned shop by changing its chief executive officer.

In 2016, SNC-Lavalin admitted that some former executives had illegally arranged donations of more than C$80,000 to Trudeau's Liberal Party from 2004 to 2011.

The company had revenues of some C$10 billion in 2018. Some 9,000 of its 52,000 employees work in Canada. The headquarter and 3,400 of its employees are in the province of Quebec where the Liberals need to pick up votes in October's federal election to keep their majority.

It was the task of the Justice Minister and Attorney General, Jody Wilson-Raybould, to decide if the case should go on trial as the law demands, or if it could be settled out of court. A trial would likely end with SNC-Lavalin banned from all public contracts in Canada for 10 years. It would cost jobs and votes.

The company lobbied the Liberal government which brought in a remediation agreement regime in 2018 as part of a massive budget bill.

During the fall of 2018 Trudeau and his allies tried to press the attorney general, a Canadian aboriginal, to overturn the decision of the director of public prosecutions, to apply the new law and to thereby drop the criminal charges against SNC. She would not do that. In January Trudeau fired her from the justice minister and attorney general job and gave her a minor position as veteran's minister. Under solicitor-client privilege and cabinet confidences Wilson-Raybould could not speak out about the issue.

On February 7 the scandal leaked from anonymous sources. Five days later Wilson-Raybould resigned as veterans minister. She hired a retired Supreme Court judge as her lawyer, to advise her on what she could say. On February 18 Gerald Butts, Trudeau's friend and principle secretary, was made the fall guy. He resigned even while he denied that he tried to influence the attorney general. Under pressure, the House of Commons Justice Committee invited Wilson-Raybould to testify. Trudeau had to wave some privilege which allowed her to finally speak out about her time as attorney general.

Yesterday Wilson-Raybould testified.

Jody Wilson-Raybould - bigger

From her long opening statement:

For a period of approximately four months between September and December 2018, I experienced a consistent and sustained effort by many people within the government to seek to politically interfere in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion in my role as the Attorney General of Canada in an inappropriate effort to secure a Deferred Prosecution Agreement with SNC-Lavalin. These events involved 11 people (excluding myself and my political staff) – from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Privy Council Office, and the Office of the Minister of Finance. This included in-person conversations, telephone calls, emails, and text messages. There were approximately 10 phone calls and 10 meetings specifically about SNC-Lavalin that I and/or my staff was a part of.

Wilson-Raybould gave all the details: who, when, where and how. There is a paper trail. She made detailed notes of everything that happened.

Pressuring the AG to drop charges can be a offense under Canada's criminal code (pdf), section 139(2):

Every one who wilfully attempts in any manner other than a manner. described in subsection (1) to obstruct,pervert or defeat the course of justice is guilty of an in-dictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years.

During her testimony Wilson-Raybould noted that she was not yet allowed to speak out about what happened after she was fired as attorney general. There is likely more to come from her. She says that she believes that no law was broken but that Trudeau behaved inappropriately. A jury and court may see that differently.

Trudeau responded in a news conference that he "completely disagreed" with Wilson-Raybould’s version of events. He claimed that that neither he nor his staff had done anything wrong. The issue is under investigation of the independent ethics commissioner and Trudeau hopes that he will be found not guilty of any wrongdoing.

Justin Trudeau during his much ridiculed 2018 trip to India - bigger

Even if he did not break any law Trudeau will be unable to escape the storm he is now under. With the case pending it will be difficult for the Liberals to win the October elections. It would be best for the party if Trudeau would step down and let someone else take the lead.

There is potential candidate with more credibility than the former media darling Justin Trudeau ever had.

Ezra Levant - @ezralevant - 2:24 utc - 28 Feb 2019

10. Last detail. Jody Wilson-Raybould's father was an Aboriginal activist who butted heads with Justin Trudeau's father. Here they are bantering. Bill Wilson tells Pierre Trudeau that his daughter Jody wants to be PM one day. Maybe she will be?

Posted by b on March 1, 2019 at 10:16 UTC | Permalink

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Rumor has it, he is tied to the #NXIVM/Bronfman scandal. Then, there's always that 'weird donation' of taxpayer money he gave to the CGI anywhere from $20-$240 million dollars.

Posted by: christy | Mar 1 2019 10:34 utc | 1

Meanwhile Chrystia Freeland nails her colours to Justin Trudeau's mast.

I have 100 percent faith in the prime minister

In British politics such a statement is a prelude to someone's political demise.
BTW, I'm surprised Trudeau hasn't accused Jody Wilson-Raybould of being a Putinist and trying to blame all this on Putin already.

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Mar 1 2019 11:13 utc | 2

Justin Trudeau is just another version of Macron-both are arrogant and stupid. Is it surprising that the world is in such a mess ?

Posted by: Friar Ockham | Mar 1 2019 11:21 utc | 3

The empty rhetoric and hypocrisy of Freeland and Trudeau's "rules based international law" will, hopefully, become more apparent to the Canadian public after Wilson-Raybould's testimony.

Posted by: saxawoogie | Mar 1 2019 11:30 utc | 4

meh, whoever comes next will be another of the empire's running dogs. Regime rotation. Same as it ever was.

Posted by: Nico | Mar 1 2019 11:58 utc | 5


sort of an early Errol Flynn meets Benny Hill....take on a foreign culture

Posted by: jadez | Mar 1 2019 12:00 utc | 6

"Then, there's always that 'weird donation' of taxpayer money he gave to the CGI anywhere from $20-$240 million dollars."

What does CGI stand for? Clinton Global Initiative? Does it still exist?

Posted by: LeaNder | Mar 1 2019 12:15 utc | 7

Justin Trudeau is an intellectual lightweight and a drama queen. He believes he is some sort of saviour because his birthday is December 25. Without firm discipline by his advisors, he would expose his stupidity and lack of integrity every day. He is also being sued by a woman he called a racist who asked when the federal government would transfer money to Quebec for the illegal immigrants asking for asylum in that province. But, given that, and the fact that SNC-Lavalin was also mostly responsible for the largest corruption scandal in Canadian history, where they overran costs for the McGill University Health Centre by several billion dollars, the newspapers are already saying that SNC-Lavalin would not be banned from government contracts, as the law stipulates it should. Also if Trudeau leaves, Freeland the neocon would probably be the most likely to replace him.

Posted by: Mischi | Mar 1 2019 12:17 utc | 8

I disagree with most of this. Let's be frank - I am disillusioned with Trudeau, although I would still prefer him multifold over his predecessor, the hawk Harper, or the current Conservative opposition leader Scheer. Whether this is the type of scandal that can finally lift the NDP as the main contender in the elections, I can only hope.
However, as a real scandal this is more political than anything else. This is political correctness brought to bear in a Canadian way - Trudeau being judged by his own silly style of correctness - because there is not a single country in the world where its leadership would not have done the same, or much worse, to 'explain' things to a stubborn attorney general. And in this case, the fact that people explain things to you cannot be seen as interfering or, let alone, obstruction. Decisions have consequences. And as one who has done business overseas, SNC Lavalin paying a bribe-commission in Libya - come on guys, let's get real. Of course they did. But whether people in Canada have to lose their jobs over this - no, I don't agree.
We have an attorney general here who was overly sensitive. But the entire Liberal government has been hypocritically oversensitive in every way: let me remind you about the silly statements of Trudeau about Huawei extradition. It is not true that no statement can be made as to the political overstretch or abuse by the USA of our extradition treaty; his firing of the ambassador to China now comes back to haunt him in a similar way over this.
So I may gloat over this in a very different way than many of the others here.

Posted by: Josh | Mar 1 2019 12:20 utc | 9

Josh, you are wrong. There was pressure brought to bear and it was all documented by the ex-Attorney-General. The current climate in Quebec is also very concerned about corruption, as there is hardly a day where there isn't a story about it in the papers. Yesterday, the city of Chambly was put under guardianship. The day before, there was another story about the contracts being given to a wife of a city official, etc. Not to mention the stories about excessive delays in the trials of SNC Lavalin officials being tried for the McGill Hospital case. there is no way people will brush over this easily.

Posted by: Mischi | Mar 1 2019 12:31 utc | 10

How long until this creep is removed then if in fact he is *Finished* We are fed up with him already along with his Legal Weed scam. GET RID OF THIS GOOF ALREADY.

Posted by: Jim | Mar 1 2019 13:05 utc | 11

Poor Trudeau.

Posted by: Guerrero | Mar 1 2019 13:31 utc | 12

There is a difference between corruption uncovered in Canada and this particular case, which is about Libya. Even the attorney general herself said that the pressure / the explanations were unlikely illegal. If the source of the accusations makes this kind of detour around it, then it's clear to me.
I don't disagree with you in that it spells trouble for Trudeau. In the end I think it will primarily be political trouble, the appearance of wrongdoing, which can kill him just the same.
But in terms of whether it for sure is the end for Trudeau, no, I don't think so. There's a lot of time between now and October, and the Scheer demands sound very hollow. People in Ontario, and women in general, will be very reluctant of having the conservatives, with Ford's Ontario premiership making such an ugly spectacle of himself. I think Trudeau is enough of a wily politician to somehow redeem himself. I think that is still the more likely outcome than a replacement for Trudeau (I shudder at Freeland who is already salivating but who would lose the election for sure), the ugly Scheer prospect, or the remote chances of NDP's Singh who only now can start to make a name for himself in Parliament and whose party doesn't have enough cash to fund its campaigns.

Posted by: Josh | Mar 1 2019 13:41 utc | 13

It's interesting that the criticisms levelled at Trudeau the Lesser during the last campaign, that he was an inexperienced, lightweight, trustafarian who wasn't fit to hold office seem to be true.

Though Wilson-Rayboud will never and probably should never be PM. While I can certainly appreciate how cleanly she knifed Justin in the back over her demotion to Veterans Affairs, fucking an election is not generally the kind of thing that is considered a great career move. The probably should never comes from the fact that I think it's a safe bet Jody or someone close to her leaked the original story. Because Canada is a two and a half party system, when the Liberals don't form the government, it means the Conservatives are going to. Which means that she looked at the prospect of a conservative government and decided that slitting Trudeau's throat was more important than, well, anything she might want to do legislatively. Which, to my mind, pretty much means she shouldn't hold the job. Clintonesque "I want the job because me having the job would be historic" nitwits should be kept away from power.

Posted by: Grimgrin | Mar 1 2019 13:45 utc | 14

Excellent! The problem for Canadians going forward is that if Trudeau goes down, his Banderite pitbull Chrystia Freeland may take his place. Or worse, that the Harper Tories under their new leader Andrew Scheer, replace the Liberals and resume their favoured pastime of hacking and chopping all of Canada's social programs. The opposition NDP isn't worth talking about since their party is in tatters and they haven't a hope of hell of taking power. So good to see the Dauphin Trudeau get his comeuppance by being booted from power, but even scarier to contemplate what happens if he does.

Posted by: John Gilberts | Mar 1 2019 14:03 utc | 15


"Explaining" things to the AG may not have been illegal. But doesn't removing the AG demonstrate that the "explaining" in this case was actually pressure for a certain outcome (thus interference)?

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Mar 1 2019 14:04 utc | 16

Re christy #1. Indeed, the Trudeau Liberal Party's chief fundraiser is Zionist billionaire Stephen Bronfman, Canada's Sheldon Adelson: National Board of Directors - Liberal Party of Canada

"Revenue Chair, Stephen Bronfman."

Posted by: John Gilberts | Mar 1 2019 14:22 utc | 17

It is a measure of the corruption in our system that anyone would doubt for a moment that Trudeau has disqualified himself.
Jody, on the other hand, has acted with complete honesty and discretion.
What we have learned of Trudeau is not that, on one occasion he sacrificed legality to his personal interests but that everything that he does is unprincipled and tailored to his reading of the political situation. We see this on Venezuela, where Canada is being employed, to the applause of greedy mining corporations, as the Empire's drudge, undertaking the sordid work of preparing for genocide by spreading lies.
We have seen it in the pipeline politics in which the government has purchased an ancient and marginally useless pipeline because tossing a couple of billion dollars down the maw of one of Enron's bastard children is so easy and popular among oil executives.
One of the great problems here is that there is no media criticism of the government-all the failing newspapers are waiting, impatiently, cap in hand to pick up millions in subsidies to keep them going. In return they are happy to tone down their political coverage to fan magazine intensity. The CBC, like the BBC in the UK, is dominated by Establishment voices. The rest of TV is owned by capitalists whose portfolios contain a million reasons to lighten up in the face of political abuse and corruption.
The NDP, formerly the Socialist CCF, was finally wrecked by the late Jack Layton and now acts as little more than an annexe to the old capitalist parties. In fact there is a political vacuum in Canada, because the natural development of a Corbynite alternative, rooted in the real traditions of radical dissidence and anti-imperialist sentiment and allied with a revival of resistance from the indigenous First Nations, is being blocked by the anti-anti-semitism which infests Canada's left.
In Canada, as in most of the western world, the beginning of independent, radical politics is rejection of the fascist crucifixion of Palestine: once that is permitted, and self censorship rejected, everything becomes possible.
After all the model for Apartheid in South Africa and Israel was Canada's treatment of its aboriginal "Indians."

Posted by: bevin | Mar 1 2019 14:26 utc | 18

So, I guess you want that banned-from-Russia Zionist bootlicker heading the Conservative Party to be the next PM??? Keep this up then.

What you don't seem to understand is that the Canadian political system has become like the U.S., a duopoly in service of Zionism, where the 3rd party is but a spoiler and kingmaker and will never win. There is no democracy anywhere Zionism rules, Canada being a prime example next to the U.S.

Now I get that Trudeau, weak as he is, is in the pocket of the Bronfman dynasty, but he's still the lesser of the two evils.

Just give it up. Canada is hopeless.

Posted by: Circe | Mar 1 2019 14:38 utc | 19

Donald Trump summarized Trudeau aptly: "very dishonest and weak." There is though that saying 'it takes one to know one'.

Justin Trudeau should never ever never have become Prime Minister. His selection as such was pure political ambition on the part of his Liberal Party, and irresponsible vain nonsense on the part of Trudeau himself. He got to play leader in the big leagues when he was not even a credentialed minor-leaguer. Pardon the poetic impulse, but twas his name that gave him fame, but that name couldn't fix his lame, lack of skills in the political game.

Good riddance.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Mar 1 2019 14:39 utc | 20

I guess the picture of Trudeau crying was taken in the parliament, when he was talking about gay rights and how much the gays have suffered during the 70s and 80s in the hands of the law officers.

Posted by: Mattheus | Mar 1 2019 14:45 utc | 21

My view of this is similar to Josh's, that the Liberals' absurd political correctness has gone too far. For one thing, the allegations against Lavalin are now more than a decade old, and why should they now be raked over the coals, and they involve Libya before the French, British and yankees destroyed that country. Unfortunately, the NDP has also been too much under control of political correctness and the refusal to take a more independent stance re big brother to the south and imperialism issues, the new leader, though presentable as a personality, probably appears too exotic to make the necessary breakthrough with the traditional electorate. The threat of a Fordlike government federally is something to worry about, and Freeland is documented as a Banderite quisling by inheritance and her policies.
I also suspect that Raybould's politically correct and probably pro-imperialist policies (Lavalin has had a lot of dealings with China and Russia) also played a role in Trudeau's cow-towing to the yankees on the Huawei case recently. He probably acceded to Raybould's wishes on that issue, which, as an extradition case, would be under the control of the Justice Ministry, so as to avoid this controversy becoming a major issue at that time. Trudeau's problem is probably weakness. He simply doesn't have the substance of Trudeau pere and has followed the dictates of the permanent power structure leavened with a large, odious dose of political correctness and identity politics. Actually, I think by trying to stop the Lavalin prosecution he was showing a bit of courage in standing up to this power structure. It will be unfortunate if it results in a return of more "Ford-ified" Harperesque tories who will act as faux-populist quislings for an increasingly odious yankee regime.

Posted by: exiled off mainstreet | Mar 1 2019 14:46 utc | 22

The question is who gonna replace him until the elections. Freeland (current FM) is a viable candidate. She did lots of things like organizing S.American countries against Maduro, undermining/blaming Russia pertaining Ukraine and Crimea, arms agreement with Saudis etc.etc. So she is quite good at what she is mandated to do.

Posted by: Mattheus | Mar 1 2019 14:50 utc | 23

Canada is in a precarious position. Currently Canada is a bastion of the European oligarchy, the same one running France and especially Britain. It is also called House of London. American oligarchy wants to grab the riches of Canada and kick out the European oligarchy. This is what happened in the US with Trump. The problem with Canada is that almost all the banking, industrial sectors are in the hands of the European Oligarchy. In fact we can call Canada still a province of Britain subservient to orders coming from there. Liberals are and have been traditionally the facilitators of the European oligarchy since the beginning. It will be pretty hard to uproot them. Ex-PM Harper visited White House to meet Trump a few months ago, according to some news on the internet. So something was already cooking. Next elections will most likely see a Conservative win. Conservatives belong to US oligarchy, not better in any form or shape than the counterpart. So I don't see Canada ever becoming a sovereign nation (has never been anyways). The natural richness of Canada is a curse at the same time, similar to Venezuela. Vulchers will always be flying up in Canada's skies.

Posted by: Mattheus | Mar 1 2019 15:05 utc | 24

Why is anyone surprised by this? The Canadian state is and has long been a front for corporate interests, just like every other state in the neoliberal order. Let me count the (recent) ways: fronting the Lima group so Canadian mining companies can loot Venezuela, begging to keep the investor-state provisions in NAFTA II, buying a useless pipeline to prop up tar sands valuation, etc., etc. The corruption is structural and will continue with the next government, just as it did in the seamless transition from Harper to Trudeau. Until we're willing to take on capitalism, this is what we can expect.

Posted by: gino | Mar 1 2019 15:15 utc | 25

Posted by: Ghost Ship | Mar 1, 2019 6:13:38 AM | 2

Meanwhile Chrystia Freeland nails her colours to Justin Trudeau's mast.

For some inexplicable reason I was first reading:

Chrystia Freeland nails her colon to Justin Trudeau's mast.

Looks like that would work, too.

Posted by: notheonly1 | Mar 1 2019 15:50 utc | 26

Just leave Canadian politics alone; don't stir the pot when what lies in the wings to replace Trudeau/Liberals is 100 times worse and who would replace him as head of the Liberal Party is also worse.

If only Jeremy Corbyn stood a chance of becoming the next U.K. Prime Minister, Trudeau might find the courage to act more like the rebel lineage that bred him. My guess is that Trudeau is still searching for the Trudeau in him. Imagine if the Conservatives get back into power before Trudeau finally connects with his ball buster roots?

What's the greater risk, giving Trudeau more time or ushering in the AZ Empire's next Canadian Zionist enforcer?

Posted by: Circe | Mar 1 2019 15:58 utc | 27

Josh, you are wrong. There was pressure brought to bear and it was all documented by the ex-Attorney-General. The current climate in Quebec is also very concerned about corruption,
Posted by: Mischi | Mar 1, 2019 7:31:38 AM | 10

He sure is. The inquiry is about govt transparency. Here's the clue from b's post...

It was the task of the Justice Minister and Attorney General, Jody Wilson-Raybould, to decide if the case should go on trial as the law demands, or if it could be settled out of court. A trial would likely end with SNC-Lavalin banned from all public contracts in Canada for 10 years. It would cost jobs and votes.

No-one would be nattering about SNC-Lavalin being banned from public contracts if there wasn't evidence that they've been buying (lack of transparency) favors from politicians in awarding govt contracts.
Also, it's a myth that banning a corrupt contractor from performing govt contracts will cause unemployment. Other, less dishonest contractors will fill the gap. Overall employment levels are governed by the total qty of work available and punishing SNC-Lavalin won't change that. Reduction in corruption levels could even help govt construction dollars to stretch further...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Mar 1 2019 16:01 utc | 28

In China they prosecute and then execute criminal politicians.

I hope the practice spreads and then maybe politicians will be more public focused and less elite focused like in the West.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Mar 1 2019 16:18 utc | 29

I think it might be helpful for the non-Canadians to know a bit about politics in Canada. Basically Canada has two “King-maker” provinces, Ontario and Quebec. Since the 2011 election where the Quebec separatists party Bloc Québécois imploded the Liberals have mostly won the province decisively (both at the provincial and federal level). However their support is mostly in the cities and Quebec is very rural. As such the Liberals support is not very deep and imposing major penalties on SNC-Lavalin would hurt Liberal support (probably driving Liberals voters to the NDP or maybe revitalizing the Bloc Québécois). Alone this would be survivable, but the Ontario provincial Liberals just suffered a massive loss at the provincial level as a result of another major corruption scandal (the Liberal party when from a super majority of 140 seats to 9 seats, they nearly lost official party status) and people in Ontario are still angry at the Liberals (they want people to go to jail over it). Accordingly, the Liberals are unlikely to do well at the Federal level in Ontario because of this, Lastly, Trudeau is dealing with his own extreme personal unpopularity with traditional Liberals supporters (i.e. educated business professionals), who find Trudeau’s antics embarrassing (the trip to India, his sock photo ops, his “Peoplekind” statement and his overall childish behaviour).

Historically, the Liberal party are a school of piranhas when it comes to weakness, but they have normally allowed a Leader one electoral defeat before the knives go in, so I would expect that the Liberals will stick with Trudeau for the next election – suffer a massive and humiliating defeat (probably dropping behind the NDP again and become the 3rd place party) and we’ll get a conservative government. Trudeau will resign the night of the election once his lost is apparent and THEN the knifes will come out for the prospective Liberal leaders during the Leadership convention (which will take at least 3 months to setup), Christina Freeland is in the strongest position currently, but that just means the knifes will be out for her first (embarrassing allegations against her will start leaking out the moment Liberal insiders expect that the party will lose the election, the Nazi grandfather, the ties to Ukraine and her involvement in the lima group against Venezuela are too good not to use against her). Liberal leadership conventions are ruthless affairs (think Hilary vs Bernie, but Bernie fights fire with fire and even the also ran candidates get in on the action – it is after all the best way to get a cabinet post). I’d say Trudeau’s odds of winning the next election are around 10% and even then only as a minority government. If he survives as a minority he’ll have to deal with an internal coup before the next election in 2 years or so, if he loses big (i.e. 3rd place), he’ll resign the night of the election, if he loses small (2nd place) he’ll stay on for a year or two in order to try and pick the next Liberal leader.

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 1 2019 16:35 utc | 30

One thing to consider is that it is quite possible that the Liberal party elders have already written off the next election and are using this as an excuse to blame everything on Trudeau and toss him overboard after the election and that they gave the go ahead for Wilson-raybould to testify so forcibly against Trudeau personally

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 1 2019 16:45 utc | 31

I posted a link here on the previous thread to the testimony in the Canadian Parliament by Jody Wilson-Raybould, which is a very uplifting document. I can strongly recommend reading it. It is also an uncanny testimony to what goes on in power - what we all know goes on anyway, but said in black and white by a former government minister.

Posted by: BM | Mar 1 2019 16:46 utc | 32

The corporate interests will prevail, they don't care about Trudeau or Canada. The issues regarding who would lead next is little more than gossip on trivial events. Canada is a fully captured territory of the Western Empire and does as the money interests of the West - a fifth trillion dollar block of capital whose operatives call the shots.

No Western government is free from the domination of the core block of Western capital described in detail in the book GIANTS: The Global Power Elite, by Peter Phillips.

No matter what happens, elections within a corrupt and essentially feudal system will change nothing. "Liberal Democracy" is a corrupt deceitful decadent system and culture more of it (elections and "democracy") will solve nothing. It takes very little effort to see everywhere around the West the consequences of deep poverty and suffering by millions while its military - directed by the representatives of the trillion - slaughters innocent people sometimes by the thousands sometimes by the hundreds EVERY SINGLE DAY which it has done EVERY SINGLE DAY sense August 6, 1945.

Support of the existing imperial power is easy, just vote and continue the pantomime of "democracy" while the Empire slaughters with impunity.

Posted by: Babyl-on | Mar 1 2019 17:02 utc | 33

Good. Let the corrupt fall, and hopefully eventually take down the vile Christina Freeland .

Posted by: AriusArmenian | Mar 1 2019 17:04 utc | 34

I agree with gino (25) and several others:
It doesn't matter what party is in power or who the prime minister or president is.
As long as they obey corporations, it's all good... for the corporatocracy, which rules the government (politicians merely serve the corporatocracy).
Revolution — which ALWAYS involves killing, ALWAYS — is the only way to remove a corporatocracy, but the masses in industrialized Western countries are currently too sedated by smartphones and other corporate-produced entertainment to risk their lives opposing corporate rule.
We plebes would rather be titillated by tabloid-style "scandals" and other fluff endlessly churned out for our pleasure by the corporatocracy's mass media, and we gladly allow ourselves to be controlled this way (because hey, it's just soooo thrilling to ridicule public figures and call people fucktards etc.)

Posted by: MarkMosby | Mar 1 2019 17:07 utc | 35

I despise the imperialist in fake progressive clothing Trudeau, so I do enjoy seeing him brought to his knees. All the wrangling in the comments about how it might be worse if he is replaced is inconsequential in my view. The financial elites and their military/intelligence cohorts will likely continue to run the show in any eventuality; it's more if you favor of having an Obama/Trudeau figure who pretends to be progressive but serves Wall Street and the powers that be without any opposition from the left, or an unpopular conservative who follows mostly the same policy but may engender some opposition from the left (or from what passes for a left in Canada or the US). In general, both routes yield the same statistical results with few positives. Only a movement with the full support of the people has any hope of positive change, and changing the captain's uniform without changing course does no good.

Posted by: worldblee | Mar 1 2019 17:12 utc | 36

thanks b and to many of the commenters here - kadath in particular for helping to enlighten others on canuck politics..

i agree with bevin, gino and some others - canada is no different then the rest of the western world at present - run by corporations and not in a way that essentially corrupt.. trudeaus actions might be typical, but they are still unacceptable..

but the real catch is we are going to get something much worse in the form of the next conservative gov't... oh well.. if someone knows a way out of this madness, please let us know..

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 17:12 utc | 37

@worldbee.. i feel the same way about the dress of bankers too, lol.. one big con job... oh well...

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 17:14 utc | 38

no, he is not finished. Too many people here just reading the headlines of the Globe and Mail and Postmedia, who have been out to get him since day 1. Their preferred candidate is Stephen Harper and his mini-me Scheer, who btw just addressed a crowd of xeno, islamo, and homeohobes and told them he stands with them. People in Quebec see this very differently, some on TV suggesting this is anti-quebec sentiment since if this was Toronto company, nobody would care. The hagiography of Ms. Raybould-Wilson is tough to stomach, since these same outlets blasted her approach to her file since she started. “Principled” people don’t throw their colleagues under the bus just because thy are hurt for being demoted. She was STILL in cabinet fer crissakes. She burned through staff like socks, burned her government in the Huawei case, and was myopic here. No wonder she was demoted.

The realistic alternatives to Trudeau at the moment are very very much worse, unless you like even more wild-eyed neoliberal war hawks. Jagmeet is not yet realistic, maybe soemday. and R-W? if you think that anyone who would do that to one’s colleagues has a future in any party, please send some of what you are smoking. if anyone is finished she is.

No idea what the ultimate outcome will be. They have a budget to bring down and months to prepare for th election. Mini-me is an abomination. and 8 months is a long long time in politics.

Posted by: bun | Mar 1 2019 17:32 utc | 39

Trudeau Jr has been a serious disappointment. But don't count him out. The competition in the upcoming elections is the Conservative party and their leader has all of the karisma of Angela Merkel. Even with his scandals Trudeau should be able to mop the floor with with the Conservatives leader Sheer. The problem for Trudeau and the Liberal party isn't Sheer and the Conservatives it is voter apathy. But come election time the hard right John Bolton/Donald Trump side of the conservative party that Ezra Levant comes from will be unleashed to speak and Canadians will recoil in terror once again at the racism that will be unleashed.

The real challenge comes if the Conservitives lose the coming election and hold a leadership race with Rona Ambrose winning. That could lead to a landslide in the following election.

Posted by: BraveNewWorld | Mar 1 2019 17:40 utc | 40

Nice to see my OT--FYI from yesterday become the main topic today. James asks: "if someone knows a way out of this madness, please let us know.."

Given comments I read by Canadians, you need to form a new political party grounded on the Rule of Law and fundamental Socialist/Progressive Principles; and you must do it rapidly to take advantage of the just created political vacuum. Harp on the corruption and international illegality of being the Outlaw US Empire's hand maiden while pointing out the surrendering of sovereignty via the latest version of NAFTA. My experience is Canadians have prided themselves on being more civilized than their Southern neighbors, and that cultural distinctiveness seems to be under attack via BigLie Media Narratives; and if I'm right about that, then it can also be exploited as a political point. And I'm sure there are other important issues I've omitted.

Bottom line: If Canadians detest the current political status quo, then it's up to Canadians to change it; otherwise, Canada's version of the Duopoly will win yet again. Better to try and lose than not trying and losing by default.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 1 2019 17:54 utc | 41

It's all a setup to put Bronfman bitch Chrystia Freeland into the Prime Minister's Office.

Watch and see. Modern politics are fake and Wilson-Raybould would not hold out unless she had powerful backers.

Posted by: C I eh? | Mar 1 2019 17:58 utc | 42

They will replace him with something far worse.

It's in their nature.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Mar 1 2019 17:58 utc | 43

The underlying problem in Canada is that neo-liberalism has been unchallenged for about twenty years. That is why, to so many, the only alternative to bad liberals is worse tories.
Haven't we heard that before? Isn't that what Clintonites told us about having to vote democratic neo-liberal, because Trump neo-liberal would be worse? Isn't that how we got Macron, because France had to vote his neo-liberalism because Le Pen would be worse? And Tony Blair and New (neo-liberal) Labour had to be supported because... And in Germany the SPD, in Greece PASOK, followed by Syriza..
The truth is that people have to stop supporting lying, cheating, imperialist politicians just because they hate other liars and cheats more. We have to start saying "If you support bombing Iran, or invading Venezuela or doing sweet deals with capitalist cronies, for campaign contributions etc, we won't vote for you. We don't care if your cabinets are full of political tokens.
Two incidental observations on politics in Canada: firstly when Ontario elects a Tory government it tends to balance it by sending non-Tories to Ottawa. Secondly Pierre Trudeau might have had style-for an old guy- but he was just another capitalist politician. If he didn't always seem so that was because Canadians in the sixties and seventies tended to be left wing: they welcomed US draft evaders and deserters, they supported nationalistic and anti-imperialist policies, they supported medicare for all and universal welfare benefits, generous unemployment policies and a public stance of non intervention in Latin America and anti-fascism.
It was that public opinion which pushed all parties to the left and made Canada, at the time a fairly good place to be an ordinary working man in, a lucky country.
What has been missing is any momentum towards the left, and one reason for that is that the New Democrats have been taken over by the local versions of Clinton and Blair who have, as they always do, driven radicals out of the party and on to the political margins in the idiotic belief that they will get more votes by being indistinguishable from the other parties.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 1 2019 18:14 utc | 44


Very pragmatic take.

Let's face it. There are no good options for Canada, only way worse options. If pulling a few not-so-legal shenanigans to keep a company that employs thousands of people from restructuring and laying them off is such awful corruption then, I'll take that over the shet Trump and May are pulling any day!

If this JWR woman is responsible for the arrest of China's executive in service of Trump then she can take her ambitions to the unemployment office for all I care.

All I can say is: a Harper clone is in waiting, so to everyone making a stink about corruption and purity, be careful what you wish for!

Posted by: Circe | Mar 1 2019 18:22 utc | 45

nice summary. random thoughts:

- as i mentioned yesterday, this is all based on one woman's testimony but it is very believable and she definitely knows how to keep texts and such. her lawyer was also the one who advised her not to talk until it could be official so he probably knows it's very credible. that said...

- the conservatives (and in their own passive-aggressive yuppie way, the NDP) have been frothing at eaubama since he got elected and pushed out the literally psychotic harper coalition. while this affair does show typical sleaziness (which, as i also noted in yesterday's comments, is like "discovering" fire is hot and water is wet) it still seems like the political equivalent of busting capone for his taxes. the pictured india trip was when it really started rolling and it's gathered a lot of snow since.

- while i have a significant axe to grind with the particular breed of trailer-dwelling, cousin-banging conservatives that crawl around this side of the border, i call justin "eaubama" for a reason. just as obama was a typical energy sector whore (again, like every politician at that level ever), trudeau recently dropped ~$4 billion on a garbage pipeline in a desperate effort to make the oiltards (aka albertans) shut the f_ck up for 5 seconds. take a wild guess if it worked.

even his defense today is the usual "i didn't want to take their jerbs!" pandering to the great god JOBWEH expected from every plutocrat. dollar o akbar and all that.

and just as the current state of play in venezuela is in a direct line from obama to trump, trudeau has joined in that mess in the most slavish way possible (again: oil) and of course is the same groveling gimp to israeli (and ukrainian) policy as any other typical western politician/corporate middle manager. replacing him may - as with obama to trump - mark a change in style but not in substance. meet the new boss: same as the old boss but louder and grosser.

- while this is still playing out i've always thought freeland was doing some conniving in the background and she might be a way for the powers that be to play "identity politics" while also keeping a very neoliberal, very pro-israel, very, VERY pro-ukraine stuffed suit in the PM office. see also: hillary clinton.

as 10+ years of harper and the recent election of doug "like rob without the charm" ford in ontario show, canada is waaaaaaay more conservative, neoliberal and amnesiac than most people in the states would think. the same mentality that had people calling obama "socialist" down south is rampant up here and trudeau's "true" crime is only being 90% conservative instead of 120% like many voters.

- last point (sorry for the text wall): an aboriginal being PM here would have to be as diluted as elizabeth warren to even stand a chance. again, despite its reputation canada is still a white european colonial project and anti-indigenous racism is baked in.

Posted by: the pair | Mar 1 2019 18:22 utc | 46

@ Friar Ockham #3

Justin Trudeau is just another version of Macron-both are arrogant and stupid. Is it surprising that the world is in such a mess ?

There are so many interesting comments here! I'm picking out yours because my ignorance of Canada is such that I'm going to embarrass myself if I don't keep focused. :)

I like the "arrogant" and "stupid" bits, and would add "puppet" to the mix. "Corrupt" and "weak" are also worthy of consideration here. (Every time I used to read a Canada headline including "Harper" I'd say to myself "What a nasty SOB")

You mentioned Macron as a fellow-traveller to Trudeau. I'd add Obama to that list. I know of no recent US President who could come close to matching him in the area of Sock Puppetry, though BHO was also noteworthy in the Arrogant and Weak categories. And Obama definitely wasn't as bright as he imagined himself to be.

Posted by: Zachary Smith | Mar 1 2019 18:24 utc | 47

"“Principled” people don’t throw their colleagues under the bus just because thy are hurt for being demoted..."
This is a slander: she was moved out of 'Justice' (if you can call it that) in order to make room for someone who would do what Trudeau's kitchen cabinet wanted. The idea that she was demoted because she was responsible for the Huawei nonsense is evidently false. Her resignation took place when she realised that the Public Prosecutor was going to be pressed into acting in Trudeau's political interest- not only an affront but a public breach of the very principle of 'equality before the law' that she was pressed into using to defend the shocking subservience to the worst elements in Washington which was behind the arrest of the Huawei executive.
A further irony in this case is that Trudeau's defence includes the assertion that LNC Lavelin's shakedown of Libya is just politics-this after the Canadian Air Force bombed Ghadaffi into defeat on the grounds that his government was corrupt.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 1 2019 18:25 utc | 48


Cubans overwhelmingly approved new constitution on 24 Feb with an 84% turnout voting over 90% in favor. The excellent recap describes the outstanding democratic nature of the exercise in stark contrast to the usual lies put forth by the Outlaw US Empire. I salute Cuban bravado as they demonstrate that Marco Rubio in no way should be called Cuban!

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 1 2019 18:31 utc | 49

James, there is a way out. He's tanned, rested and ready - Wayne Gretzky!

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Mar 1 2019 18:33 utc | 50

Lots of lesser evil talk going on here today.

We should all know that there is no fundamental difference between the main political parties. The only difference is in the salesmanship of the brutality. Trudeau is a better salesman (he is a drama teacher after all) and uses the language of identity politics to pretend what he is actually selling (neo-liberal economics) is sweeter than the conservative version. Even the NDP has been utterly corrupted and their foreign policy is more interventionist than the rest.

I told my Canadian friends early on that Trudeau jr was a complete fake and they were mortified. Canada is a wholly owned subsidiary of the City of London and its branch office in America. Watch the swearing in ceremony of any prime minister and the oath of office they take. That removes any doubt about who they actually serve.

Posted by: sad canuck | Mar 1 2019 18:39 utc | 51

Has Javad Zarif's resignation been discussed? What is the consensus?

Posted by: fd | Mar 1 2019 19:10 utc | 52


Ezra Levant is vile, and quoting him is beneath your dignity.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 1 2019 19:29 utc | 53

There are no lesser evils. The real evil is when the average citizen in any country will, rather than informing themselves, avoiding citizen responsiblity and retreat to the default of materialism. Prime example is the Canadian government at whatever colour, will protect their elites and use the material caveat of "we will hurt those not like us - jobs lost, loss of revenue, blah, blah... Entitlement wins the day.

But it doesn't help being a nation that has also declared its fealty to Israel, and is a helpless vassal to the U$A. Our politicians in Canada are weak to begin with, because all they can promote is support for those that need very little or no assistance; legislated crime and poverty.

At present, Alberta ignores its imperative to bring its oil resources back into crown ownership and sovereignty. The mandate is clear: continue with managed boom and bust failure, it becomes that cliche of "repeating the same mistake, hoping for a different outcome."

Posted by: Darryl Secret | Mar 1 2019 19:41 utc | 54

There is some truth to the idea that Canada's politics follows its southern neighbor's by a few years.
Trudeau can be viewed as Canada's version of Obama. Not nearly as terrible as right wing predecessors Harper/Bush is some regards (e.g., stifling scientists), but little substantive difference elsewhere and a huge disappointment overall. Fortunately Canada's version of Trump does not appear to be waiting in the wings, but you never know...

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 1 2019 19:43 utc | 55

Another Canadian here, and yes, this seems to be the US Deep State is playing the corporatist duopoly game here. Grandstanding warmonger closet-Nazi Freeland is only "remaining loyal" to Trudeau so when he only gets a minority gov't this fall, she is top of the list to become the PM after the election. That way she gets to run the country without having campaigned for the PM post. The NDP will never vote non-confidence with the Cons unless it appears the NDP has a chance to be the Opposition or ruling party in a snap election. There is NO WAY the NDP will win with Singh as leader. So Freeland will make a big try at being our next 4-year dictator.

The Trudeau gov't only changed the window-dressing on the Harper gov't agenda. Same pipelines, military stupidity, NAFTA-style trade deals and allowing the erosion of our civil rights and full medical coverage. Selfies and cute socks don't cut it.

Sheer is yet another Con-howdy-doody cut-out to front the same agenda as Harper was given by Adelson et. al. , and Canadians see Sheer for exactly that. With Lunatic Ford dismantling Medicare, as well as offending teachers/students and the entire LGBTQetc community in Ontario as we speak, unlikely many swing seats flipped to Con there.

Quebec voters are more likely to revert to separatist leanings rather than vote Con. Half the reason the NDP won so many Quebec seats with the Layton's Orange Wave is because the Cons didn't field viable candidates, placing them elsewhere where the Cons could manipulate the vote more easily.

In Canada we tend to simply elect a dictator every 4 years or so, especially if it is a majority gov't.

Posted by: A P | Mar 1 2019 19:45 utc | 56

farm ecologist @52--

I posted the twitter thread yesterday, which I got from chinahand's twitter page. The reporting's straight forward with no ideological hint, although the same cannot be said of the resulting thread. Presumably, Mr. Levant got the info he posted from Canadian media; so, b's citing that media, not Levant. And if you still have a beef, direct it at me.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 1 2019 19:49 utc | 57

Ezra Levant?! I guess you didn't watch the Zionist rant published by Rebel Media.

Posted by: WHAT! WHAT!!! | Mar 1 2019 20:01 utc | 58

Aha!! It's a shoot the messenger to kill the message attempt! I see politics is involved with Canadian "Justice" as Meng Wanzhou's rendition to the Outlaw US Empire about to be finalized. And who arranged and ordered that? Surely not Mr. Levant!

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 1 2019 20:13 utc | 59

karlof1 @56

I don't consider Levant to be a reliable source of information, but I admit that he can be right some of the time (as in this case). Mostly he's a shrill demagogue, and he kinda makes my flesh crawl.
If I had multiple sources to back up a point, he'd be one of the last ones I'd cite.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 1 2019 20:15 utc | 60

karlof1 @59

Thanks for reminding me of Wilson-Raybould's culpability in Meng's possible extradition. No shooting the messenger or implied innocence here (except Meng's). Levant, Trudeau and Wilson-Raybould can all equally be assholes, albeit of different stripes. It's a pretty big club as far as I can tell...

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 1 2019 20:25 utc | 61

Beijing and Huawei would be wise to follow this crisis in Justin Bieber Turdeau's government carefully, to see if his resignation has any effect on Sabrina Meng's detention and whether a caretaker government will be more eager to deport her to the US.

Posted by: Jen | Mar 1 2019 20:28 utc | 62

Karlof1 @ 59, Farm Ecologist @ 61:

Jody Wilson-Raybould was demoted as Attorney General in January this year. She resigned from her position at the veterans' affairs ministry in February. So she would appear not to have been involved in the current push for Sabrina Meng to be extradited to the US.

When I was typing my comment @ 62, I hadn't yet seen the comments from 59 onwards.

Posted by: Jen | Mar 1 2019 20:39 utc | 63

@41 karlof1... i want to answer you in a sincere way... most people don't have time to start up a new political party.. they are too caught up in the day to day responsibilities and it is not something that most would think about doing... i do agree with you though! someone more involved in politics might take it up, but the outcome might not be as great as a consequence too.. i'm definitely not into it, but a new party running in canada would be helpful.. preston manning was behind the reform party which was the last party i know of that was a bit of a departure from the status quo.. they got eaten up by the conservatives after the conservatives were decimated thanks mulroney..

@49 bart hansen! lol... wayne gretsky knew how to score goals, and seemed like a genuine nice guy.. i doubt he would want the job...

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 20:58 utc | 64

one thing lost in the hysteria is whether or not the Liberals position on the deferred prosecution agreement was a sensible one, and what JWR was hoping to achieve by pressing to have the company banned from federal procurements for 10 years.

I am no fan of DPAs in general, especially how they have been applied across the board in the US with the likes of Jamie Dimon, et al, but I am also no fan of workers being punished severely for the sins of their managers, in this case who have long since left the company. Let there be no doubt that banning a big engineering company for 10 years of federal projects (SNC built the skytrain line here in vancouver e.g.) would have resulted in massive job losses at SNC, federal contracts being a goodly fraction of their annual revenue. So then what do you get? huge job losses with the resulting downstream impacts on the community and local economy, with the perps long since gone and likely doing fine financially, thank you very much. That seems bat-sh** stupid to me.

surely there is a solution where the perps are brought to justice, but the workers and the community aren't devastated. and it boggles my mind why this principled AG wouldn't want to pursue that. So "in principle" its OK to devastate innocent workers and a community? No, I do not agree to that principle at all.

Posted by: bun | Mar 1 2019 21:03 utc | 65

james @64

Elizabeth May of the Greens is, by far, the sharpest of the party leaders, and the number of Canadians voting for the Green Party is steadily increasing. They still have a long way to go, but I would be happy to give them a chance to run the show and see how things pan out.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 1 2019 21:09 utc | 66

O/T article about Venezuela's opposition:

They interestingly call out that the Trump administration has demonstrated a very anti-Latino bias; calling for regime change in Venezuela and praising Kim Jong Un's regime in North Korea.

Posted by: Mark Warner | Mar 1 2019 21:19 utc | 67

bun @65
Surely the principle that the Attorney General invoked was that of letting the Public Prosecutor exercise her discretion without overruling her for political reasons.
In this case the DPA had been smuggled past the House in an omnibus bill of precisely the kind that the Liberals criticised Harper for using. That was a matter of weeks before the matter came to a head in the AG's firing.
As to the 'jobs' angle it is used to justify every manner of corporate crime up to and including genocide by the mining industry. The obvious solution is to nationalise the corporation as an alternative to bankrupting it. This is all the more justified by the fact that the firm does an enormous amount of work for Federal and Provincial governments.

As to the connection with the Huawei-Meng- matter it looks as if Jody Raybould's position was that if it was not permissible to allow politics to interfere with the extradition process it was surely impermissible to interfere to make things electorally easier for the liberals in Quebec.
In fact there was political interference in both cases with Meng being arrested because the RCMP was acting on orders designed to curry favour with Trump and Bolton. For this was no real legal justification, except in Jody's case, the excuse that the Prosecutor was using her own discretion.
The scandal gets worse and worse as it looks as if Meng, who is not accused of being involved in any breach of either Canadian or International law, gets sent to the States and LNC Lavelin, dripping with self confessed guilt, get a free pass.
The only thing Trudeau has going for him are the opposition parties which are unprincipled, incompetent and afraid of committing themselves.

Posted by: bevin | Mar 1 2019 21:33 utc | 68

@ Posted by: Jim | Mar 1, 2019 8:05:15 AM | 11

Trudeau might be a complete tool (and he is), but everyone but you seems to be enjoying the legal weed.

Posted by: Stygg | Mar 1 2019 21:44 utc | 69

My initial thoughts on this were similar to the realist position expressed by Josh @9. In a realist frame, the pressing question is what is in the best interests of Canada? SNC/Lavalin has threatened to pull up stakes and move its operations out of Canada altogether if it is denied the opportunity to bid on government contracts for ten years. Trudeau/Liberal Party could easily determine that the repercussions of the company moving elsewhere could be quite severe in myriad ways, including the livelihoods of many thousands of people. Balancing the equation, the mediation agreement would still censure the company and provide some consequence for the misdeeds. Wilson-Rayboud did not view the issue through a realist framework apparently, and the controversy appears to be that efforts were made to explain this viewpoint against her resistance to seeing the issue that way.

I admire Wilson-Raybould's principled position. I agree that laws are laws, no one should be above the law, and that political pressure on the integrity of the justice system should be condemned. But I took a realist position regarding the Meng arrest - that arresting her was not in Canada's best interest and could lead to serious long-term repercussions, that senior people in the Liberal Party should have recognized that, and that Meng should have somehow been tipped off ahead of flying to Vancouver.

Anyway, I'll predict that Trudeau stays.

Posted by: jayc | Mar 1 2019 22:02 utc | 70

@65 "As to the 'jobs' angle it is used to justify every manner of corporate crime up to and including genocide by the mining industry. The obvious solution is to nationalise the corporation as an alternative to bankrupting it."

Corporations don't cause crimes, people do. Those who did the crime, should do the time, and not drag down a whole community of innocents down with them.

Yes, there are other solutions, like nationalizing them. That would be good punishment for their corporate class, while not punishing the engineers, etc who do good work. Surely there are other solutions where the perps get what they deserve, but leave the innocents alone. IMNSHO the Liberals were not wrong to push for a different solution.

JWR's black-and-white viewpoint is not helpful. Sure, its being held up as "principled" now, but its a stance of convenience mostly by journos who hated JT from the beginning and are using this to pile pressure on him. Sadly, she seems to have taken after her father, Bill, who was a very intelligent and well-spoken man who could have had a good long career doing productive work for his people, but chose the B&W approach and was never heard of since.

Posted by: bun | Mar 1 2019 22:50 utc | 71

I strongly suspect this is all a fix to get Freeland made into PM. That would immensely please the Neocons in Washington.

Posted by: Alfred (Cairns) | Mar 1 2019 22:57 utc | 72

This thread reeks of Zionist enabling. Ezra Levant??? If an Oracle for Zionism recommended Mother Theresa to replace Trudeau, it would only be because she was reincarnated as Golda Meir with MT's appearance! Nothing a loudmouth Zionist spouts is ever trustworthy. It's always a well-placed trap waiting for a sucker. Looks like a few here stepped right into it, including the author!

Posted by: Circe | Mar 1 2019 23:43 utc | 73

Our age like many ages is one where 'might is right' makes its ugly presence felt, and here 'might' refers to transnational corporate extreme influence, as well as the American/Israeli duo who define themselves as above the law globally.

But there is still a residual nominal honour accorded to, and attempts made to uphold the principle of 'the rule of law', within many national jurisdictions. That principle sensibly wielded involves discretion, but discretion in service to respect for the law's supremacy.

Note Bevin's point above: that the 'jobs are at risk' meme is used to in effect justify or facilitate just about every depravity, but rarely is this directly acknowledged. The all purpose 'jobs' rationalization is one indicator of a deeply flawed socioeconomic design, system. Nevertheless, in the case of SNC-Lavalin, free speech requires that people get to put forward the argument that they ought to receive special status before the law because so many jobs are at stake; they are so big.

Then one question could become: at what point does 'too big to fail or prosecute' become, let us call it, the Goldilocks Moment: what is just the right size to prosecute?

For those who think that Trudeau is the best of a bad lot, that's a rather dismal choice.

Karlofi above has suggested a new Canadian political party. Perhaps the time is ripe. But perhaps a new wrinkle, along the lines of an effort in Norway that I haven't kept up with, where a recently formed political party was described as a party of independents. That sounds about right to me.

Party politics effectively forbids actual robust free speech, and cultivates self-censorship and political theater and secret arrangements, among other evils and deficiencies.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Mar 1 2019 23:44 utc | 74

Freeland makes the hair on the back of my neck stand on end. Cheney and Addington had the same effect.

Posted by: Idland | Mar 1 2019 23:44 utc | 75

@66 farm ecologist... i like elizabeth may.. i am disappointed that a party called the green party - is not a canuck party, but some hybrid from europe and has a nice sounding environmental tone to it... how about some party that starts in canada and is canadian? here in b.c. it is a coalition party with ndp and greens.. and of course elizabeth may is from victoria area too.. the only party i have seriously thought of entertaining an idea of staring is the vancouver island party - vip, lol.. and the aim would be to separate from canada! i think there are enough of us on vancouver island that would be willing to vote for this..

@69 stygg.. i agree! i dont know anyone who isn't happy about the pot legalization that trudeau ''pushed'' thru.. however, the driving laws around it are quite insane as i understand them... they can pull you over and demand certain actions that seem very draconian... some of the police are cool with it, and some are probably like stephen harper incarnations - or worse - aspire to be like the political zealots to the south of us.. i have always found the hypocrisy about being able to drink but not smoke marijuana very pronounced... it is an ageist thing i guess..

@73 alfred - that is my greatest fear.. we will go from bad to way, way worse if that actually happens.. canucks might be stupid enough to go for it too... i don't want to rule that out..

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 23:47 utc | 76

speaking of freeland, i see the opcw's final report on the douma chemical attack say it was chlorine that was likely used...

freeland called it a war crime back in april 2018... having her in any position of power is a recipe for disaster.. no one the powers that be are really gunning for her....

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 23:55 utc | 77

no wonder -

i am the type of poster that needs to use the preview button!

Posted by: james | Mar 1 2019 23:56 utc | 78

Here is the Zionist tool in action:

This is the guy whose Zionist propaganda many of you are endorsing at this time falling for this fake imbroglio. You just don't get it? Haven't you learned yet that you must be wary of whatever a Zionist shill is selling? Don't you get that Zionists feel deceived by Trudeau and need to bring in their Zionist enforcer, the clown leading the Conservatives?

Oh my! How gullible can you be!

Posted by: Circe | Mar 2 2019 0:09 utc | 79

Here he is spouting bullshet on Venezuela:

the rebel on venezuela

Rebel, my ass! Zionist AND Neocon. You know what he's up to with this Liberal tempest he's stirring in a teapot? Divide, conquer and usher in a Zionist, Neocon chosen one. Dupes to the right of me; suckers to the left. This is how these Zionist infiltrators win every time, dum-dums!

Posted by: Circe | Mar 2 2019 0:26 utc | 80

Further to Canada's decision to proceed against Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou as per Trump's extradition request these delightful and very a propos comments by China's FM spokesman Lu Kang:

"Asked by a state media journalist if it was contradictory for Mr Trudeau to say he couldn't interfere in Ms Meng's case and yet his government stands accused of trying to interfere in the SNC-Lavalin case, Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said he 'really liked the question.'

'Of course I think that this is a question that should be asked of the Canadian government,' Mr Lu said. 'In fact in this case you mentioned, people in Canada are paying it a great deal of attention,' he added. 'In fact not only Chinese and Canadian citizens, but the whole world is extremely interested to hear how the Canadian government answers this question..."

Statements from Canada's Justice Dept and a response from Meng's defense team can be found here: Scroll down.

Posted by: John Gilberts | Mar 2 2019 0:33 utc | 81

Another 'liberated' woman stabs everyone in the back - including herself!! My God, but the eighties were a terrible disaster. We are dominated by double-barreled bourgeois, masquerading as progressives. That's identity politics pour vous. I never liked his father.

Posted by: Richard I. Crawford | Mar 2 2019 0:44 utc | 82

Circe @80

Thanks for that video. I still view Trudeau to be a Zionist shill equivalent to his predecessor Harper, but Levant's rant was an eye-opener. No amount of acquiescence to Israel is ever sufficient, it appears. Witness the current travesty of Corbyn's Labour Party.

Posted by: farm ecologist | Mar 2 2019 1:14 utc | 83

I would just like to say that I find all this Canada stuff quite depressing. I like Canada best when it was the great North strong and free and not involved in international politics. Looks to me like Justin has joined the big league now and he,s out of his depth.

Posted by: Dh | Mar 2 2019 1:14 utc | 84

Circe, you should brew yourself up a soothing potion to deal with your constant agitation. And go easy on the exclamation points. No need to shout all the time.

Posted by: xpat | Mar 2 2019 1:45 utc | 85

Robert Snefjella | Mar 1, 2019 6:44:25 PM | 75
"Note Bevin's point above: that the 'jobs are at risk' meme is used to in effect justify or facilitate just about every depravity, but rarely is this directly acknowledged...Nevertheless, in the case of SNC-Lavalin, free speech requires that people get to put forward the argument that they ought to receive special status before the law because so many jobs are at stake; they are so big."

A practical analysis of what would be at stake seems warranted. The negative result from putting SNC/Lavalin in a position where the best interests of the company would be served by moving to another jurisdiction far outweighs any retributive value from criminal prosecution. A decade old bribery scandal from Libya doesn’t seem to amount to a “depravity”, and it doesn’t appear the company is actually getting away with anything. A remediation process is part of the judicial system as well, and the company is subject to censure and punishment. Pressing the charges criminally automatically unavoidably invokes the ten-year ban on government contracts which, considered in full context, creates far more negative results than positive. It is a cure worse than the disease. The “special status” of the negotiated settlement is really a recognition of these negative results.

Posted by: jayc | Mar 2 2019 1:51 utc | 86

@45 Freeland is outright dangerous, as a Nazi-Ukraine sympathiser, mastermind of the Lima Group, and chief saleswoman for the disastrous CETA (trade NATO) with Europe. Trudeau is also sleazy and Macronian, he deserves to lose, and massively. They're hideous but I actually hope the Scheer Tories win, if the Liberals get thrashed enough the NDP could replace them as they were set to do before 2015. Hopefully the last 4 years were an anomaly and the last gasp of the Canadian (neo)Liberals.

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Mar 2 2019 2:09 utc | 87

I repeat, Freeland must never ever be allowed to come to power. Imagine a Hillary Clinton mixed with Svoboda - the ultimate "neoliberal fascist." She'd be the de facto boss of NATO and the Empire in the Western Hemisphere if America elects Bernie Sanders or Liz Warren. Why, she might even undermine them!

Posted by: Blooming Barricade | Mar 2 2019 2:13 utc | 88

This is a nothingburger. She is disgruntled former employee. Even she says nothing illegal was done.

Posted by: steve | Mar 2 2019 2:14 utc | 89

steve @90 You are not understanding the issue. The issue is not whether the Prime Minister did anything illegal. The issue is that the Attorney General could not do other than she did in the case without herself doing something illegal.

Posted by: juliania | Mar 2 2019 2:47 utc | 90

Freeland HAS to be prevented from being PM by ANY means possible, including et je pèse mes mots, re-instating the long deceased FLQ..

Posted by: Lozion | Mar 2 2019 2:52 utc | 91

@88 blooming barricade... careful what you wish for! i imagine scheer will be even worse then trudeau, or freeland... just remember little stevie and how bad he was for canada.. anyone voting for either conservative or liberal, are voting for the status quo in spades..

and in other news... this would never happen under little stevie, or scheer for that matter.. these good two shoe, church goers would never allow for it.. better to follow the ayatollahs to the south of us, then to think of getting real...

"The Liberal government is moving on its plan to grant fast, free pardons for Canadians who were convicted of pot possession before the drug was legalized last fall.

Bill C-93, tabled in the House of Commons on Friday, amends the Criminal Records Act (CRA) and aims to break down barriers to employment, housing or travel for Canadians with a criminal record for pot."

Posted by: james | Mar 2 2019 3:11 utc | 92

jayc | Mar 1, 2019 8:51:18 PM | 87 I have some disagreement with your line of thought. But first, any automatic penalty - whether a ten year ban or whatever - is a problematic law. It is a kind of 'zero tolerance' no discretion required response that ditches hard won justice for dogmatic convenience. If this law were not in force, a less problematic pursuit of justice could be pursued.

But I want to challenge your thesis that the harm done by penalizing the company in this way *necessarily* "far outweighs" the benefits of doing so, if that is a fair way of summarizing your argument. It all depends on what unfolds contextually. So, for example, would other smaller Canadian businesses doing similar work benefit by SCN/Lavalin's absence? What would be the results over ten years?

Note that SNC/Lavalin has been involved in more than one - can we call them scandals or scent of scandal. Is it time they had their wings clipped?

I grant you you may be quite correct in what is after all a prediction on your part as to how things would add up in the end. But I think it's hard to predict these things. So for example, and of course it is a long way from being a fully satisfactory analogy, but consider the situation is Russia due to sanctions. The intent was punitive, and there has been some of that, but Putin has also referred to the many benefits - these center on creating alternative indigenous capabilities.

My use of the word depravity was not related to SNC/Lavalin, but to the larger problem of justifying anything that provides jobs.

Posted by: Robert Snefjella | Mar 2 2019 3:12 utc | 93

Re: Post #83

"Another 'liberated' woman stabs everyone in the back - including herself!! My God, but the eighties were a terrible disaster. We are dominated by double-barreled bourgeois, masquerading as progressives. That's identity politics pour vous. I never liked his father."

For the record, his father, Pierre Elliot Trudeau maintained relations with Cuba and refused to follow the US. Many Canadians have and still enjoy vacationing in Cuba. He gave us a Constitution and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Under his watch Canada was a haven for conscientious objectors to the Vietnam war. Unlike today Canada was a sovereign country back then that distinguished itself from US foreign policy. I won't even bother to grace the first part of your comment.

Posted by: Mandrau | Mar 2 2019 3:14 utc | 94

I noticed that a lot of people are making statements about how Trudeau was gained/appointed to the Liberal leadership who clearly aren't aware of what was going on in Canada prior to his election, so I'd like to give more context. Back in the 90's & early 2002 Canada was led by Jean Chretien (one of Pierre Trudeau closest advisors) and his finance minster Paul Martin - Canada had an excellent economy between 1993 & 2000 and many people believed Paul Martin was responsible for this growth (Paul Martin himself among them). Chretien and Martin had a very complicated relationship, Very simlair to the relationship between Tony Blair & Gordon Brown (Note: whatever Chretien's flaws he's no where near as bad as Blair, but his relationship to his Finance Minister was very similar) Eventually, Chretien "promised" to step aside from the PM office to allow Paul Martin to lead, but it never seemed to come (Chretien was PM from 1993 to 2003) and Chretien then started toying with the idea of replacing Martin in the cabinet with one of the other senior Liberal figures at the time (the old Liberal rat pack, a collection of mostly former Pierre Trudeau figures). Anyhow, that pissed Paul off, but rather than lead a coup vs Chretien at that time he instead started a purge of any senior Liberal figure who could possibly replace him as Chretien's designated successor.

Anyhow Martin succeed in driving out the competition and eventually Chretien handed him the PM office just as a major corruption scandal over a gulf course in Quebec started. Paul Martin was a minority PM for 3 years before losing the 2006 election to Harper. Martin had two big legacies from his time as PM, 1) he resisted the US threats and demands to join them in invading Iraq (something we must always honor Paul for, what other western leader has refused the US in the past 15 years) and 2, he destroyed every single senior political figure in the Liberal party so when he was forced to step down after losing the Liberals had NO ONE to lead them. which started the darkest period in the Liberal party where the Liberal party was hilariously out of touch with the average Canadian, I won't bore people with the details, but the lowest of the low points was in 2009 when the Liberal party imported a pro-Iraq war, NEO-CON, Michael Grant Ignatieff, from the US to be their leader - in 2009, when the Iraq war was obviously a failure, even to the American people, the Liberal Party found the only pro-Iraq war professor at Harvard university, who was actively criticizing Paul Martin for NOT joining the 2006 US invasion of Iraq and the Liberals said "Yes, make this guy our leader - this is who the Canadian people want!" - in 2011 the Liberal suffered their worst elector defeat ever, coming in 3rd place behind the NDP.

Anyhow, after the disgrace of the 2011 elections the liberal were terrified that the NDP (the New Democratic party - Basically, Canadian Socialists) would completely supplant them under the leadership of the charismatic Jack Layton (think Jeremy Corbyn of the UK and that's basically what Jack was like, although that fails to capture just how likeable and earnest he was). especially since the NDP was making huge inroads in Ontario and especially with young Canadians who are attracted to the liberal (small "l") values that the NDP was selling - it is at this point that Justin Trudeau appears - Capitalizing on his family name and with the support of old Liberal rat pack team that Paul Martin drove out in the early 2000s. Justin sold himself as a hip, young Barack Obama of Canada who would win back Canadian youths from the scary NDP socialists. As it turns out that's exactly who Justin Trudeau was, all flash, no substance, he flamboozled his way into office on the strength of his ability to distract the voters from the urgent needs of the country and it's people and in the end left them worse off in every way. I've no doubt that had Jack Layton not died of cancer suddenly after the 2011 elections he would have trampled that little pompadour into the dustbin of history, but such is life.

Posted by: Kadath | Mar 2 2019 3:15 utc | 95

@95 mandrau.. thanks for saying all that... some folks are too young, or unknowledgeable to know all that..

@96 kadath.. thanks for giving all that context for readers unfamiliar with canuck politics as well..

Posted by: james | Mar 2 2019 3:23 utc | 96

Babyl-on @ 33 & worldblee @ 36; Yep!!

Interesting look into Canadian politics, thanks all, but still,the two posts I referred to above, I feel, describe the global reality...

Posted by: ben | Mar 2 2019 3:25 utc | 97

@86 xpat

Okay, I'll take you up on that. Doesn't make what I wrote any less true, though.

@84 farm ecologist

Exactly. Zionists are trying to divide Labour same as Liberals in Canada and throwing stuff at Corbyn weekly including the kitchen sink hoping it sticks. They've got Labour members infighting over who's antisemitic. Zionists are winning only because the left are allowing these faux scandals and shaming to gain traction when they should recognize these for the ruse to divide, purge and destroy they really are. What needs purging is Zionism.

Of course Trudeau has allowed himself to be manipulated by Zionists, but at the same time Trudeau opened the floodgates for refugees who represent a potential liberal electoral voting bloc that Zionists fear. Trudeau has done a few things that p.o. Zionists like calling out human rights violations on the Gaza/Israel border. But It's like I wrote earlier, the Canadian political system is pretty much the duopoly you find in Congress, although I'm liking what I see with breakaways Tlaib and Omar and the seeds they're planting.

Posted by: Circe | Mar 2 2019 3:32 utc | 98

this just in:

of course i’m posting this since it reflects my thinking as well. Note this is froma Quebec paper - their viewpoints are very very different from what the conservatives are tryi g to drum up in english canada. they must have decided that they have no chance in la belle province in the next election.

anyhow, i don’t think JT is done. hurt maybe, but not done. He may actually grow emboldened and stop the weeping metrosexual routine, which IMO would be about time. i met the man, he is big (6’2”) and athletically built (an ex bouncer in Whistler) with a crushing grip. we were all shocked - we expected a little man. and he’s no dummy - he was studying enginmering when he dropped out to enter politics. boggles my mind why they choose to market him like they do..

Posted by: bun | Mar 2 2019 4:23 utc | 99

Robert Snefjella 94

We both agree that “zero tolerance” is problematic, and judicial discretion is necessary. This is one of the issues here, that a “less problematic pursuit of justice” is effectively curtailed. I think we live in the world we live in, and Canada’s best interest is met by hosting a large international engineering firm rather than not hosting it.

My personal political instinct follows Bevin in that SNC/Lavalin should rationally be nationalized, but that would be impossible to accomplish politically, at least at this time.

Kadath 96

I had occasion to work briefly alongside high levels of the Liberal Party in late 2000s. It is very clubby, and they really do consider themselves the natural ruling political party in Canada. As a club, the Party runs by a consensus which, from my brief observation, is actually committed to the rather boring constitutional objective of “peace, order and good government” (as defined by the Liberal Party). I don’t believe it is a corrupt institution. I had occasion to interact with Paul Martin, who was clearly fully a member of the Liberal club and a man of warmth and humour as were, from my observation, many senior Liberal Party members. I had occasion to interact with Justin Trudeau, and came away believing he would eventually be PM. As PM he represents the Liberal Party, the club. I don’t know how Freeland came into the mix. It is my understanding that Stephane Dion was in line for Foreign Affairs and then it changed. She is a “smart power” globalist, represents a particular imperialist instinct of some influence, and Trudeau’s management style has given her a lot of leeway promoting regretful policies.

Posted by: jayc | Mar 2 2019 4:43 utc | 100

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