Rising child leukemia rates near U.S. nuclear power plants

Radiation and Public Health Project is “a nonprofit educational and scientific organization, established by scientists and physicians dedicated to understanding the relationships between low-level, nuclear radiation and public health.”  In November 2008, released a study conducted by epidemiologist Joseph Mangano MPH MBA and toxicologist Janette Sherman MD of the Environmental Institute at Western Michigan University and as reported in the European Journal of Cancer Care, which shows rising child leukemia rates near U.S. nuclear power plants over the past two decades.

The carcinogenic effects of radiation exposure are most severe among infants and children. Leukemia is the type of childhood cancer most closely associated with exposures to toxic agents such as radiation, and has been most frequently studied by scientists. In the U.S., childhood leukemia incidence has risen 28.7% from 1975-2004 according to CDC data…

Is this really what we want for the children of Saskatchewan?  I would think not, especially when clear alternatives are available.  The mastermind of Germany’s green-energy law says

Ontario could power itself exclusively on renewable energy one day if it thought differently about the operation and design of its entire electricity system.

So, if Ontario, with its millions of households, can be envisioned operating on green renewables for electricty then surely Saskatchewan, with only one million people, can do so sooner and better!

Oh, but then there’s that bit about thinking differently.  And old boys around here aren’t so good at that, eh?

Fed Budget: Not a budget for women

FAFIA’s 2007 federal budget overview: Not a Budget for Women can be found on their website at http://www.fafia-afai.org.  This, from the report:

The report has been organized into four categories:

§ Poverty Measures

§ Tax Breaks

§ Social Programs

§ Values

Our starting point is that women in Canada are affected differently than men by tax and spending policies of governments as a result of their varying labour market opportunities, family and community responsibilities, as well as levels of economic security.

According to the Beverley Jacobs, President of the Native Women’s Association of Canada’s, this
federal budget was « extremely disappointing ». There were absolutely no funding announced for
Aboriginal specific initiatives and organizations that provide vital support programs for Aboriginal
women and children. « What about those who are struggling to find jobs and who are living
below the poverty level? There’s no help for them. There’s no specific focus on Aboriginal women
and children. There’s no support for those who continue to struggle, » said Jacobs. 

While this year’s federal budget invests an additional $342 million per year for language
instruction and employment-related support, the federal government has backed away from its
commitment to establish a federal agency to assess and to recognize credentials at the federal
level. It has instead directed resources to providing immigrants with path-finding and referral
services to identify and connect with the appropriate assessment bodies. However, the difficult
question of how foreign credentials will be assessed has yet to be resolved.

Women in Canada have high levels of poverty, and their poverty causes their children to be poor.
But the only anti-poverty strategy in this budget is the working income tax benefit, a refundable
tax credit intended to help low income women and men move from social assistance to work by
lessening the “welfare wall.” It provides a maximum of $500 to singles and $1,000 to families.
This is a tiny amount, not sufficient or effective enough to move a woman by herself or a woman
and her children from the entirely inadequate rates of social assistance currently being provided
to affording a safe, decent place to live and to enough to eat. 

This budget proposes to eliminate all tax on scholarships for children who attend private
elementary and secondary schools. It offers as an example a young man who receives a
$30,000 scholarship to attend a private high school in Ontario, stating that the exemption will
save his family over $3,000 in federal income tax. We note that the exemption applies regardless
of the family’s income level. This is a tax subsidy for private education at a time when
governments claim they cannot find the resources to ensure that public education is properly
funded, a critical need to ensure equal opportunities for children from all socio-economic
backgrounds. It is also important to note that by the government’s own example, this tax subsidy
is worth more than three times what a low-income single parent or couple could receive from the
Working Income Tax Benefit.

But that’s what the Harperites are about, eh Canada?  Helping the rich get richer and to hell with the rest?  Democracy for whom?

Prairie railway blockade set for June 29

I haven't heard if SK First Nations will be part of this, from Canada First Perspective, National Aboriginal News


Prairie railway blockade set for June 29

Press release from Chief Terrence Nelson of Roseau River First Nation, Manitoba

Ultimatum meets Ultimatum! As Premier Dalton McGuinty and Minister of Indian Affairs Jim Prentice pull out of the Six Nations/Caledonia land claim with ultimatums that the "barricades must come down," First Nations across Canada are issuing their own ultimatums. Last week, 100 Ontario Chiefs walked to the site of the land claim dispute and issued their own warning to Canada. Today Union of British Columbia Chiefs issued full support to Six Nations. In Manitoba, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, representing 64 First Nations, passed a resolution supporting a 24-hour railway blockade set for June 29th 2006, "to force the Canadian government to establish a reasonable time-frame for settlement of land claims."

Chief Terrance Nelson moved the resolution to "send a message, that resource wealth of our lands are what supports every Canadian." Canada is the third largest producer of diamonds, has 10 per cent of the world's forests, and mines 60 metals and minerals. Oil is now over $72 a barrel, up from $10 a barrel in 1999, and there are 1.4 trillion barrels of oil in the tar sands plus hundreds of other oil and gas producing areas. Canada had eight straight federal government budget surpluses, a 2005 reported net worth of $4.5 trillion, and GDP over a trillion dollars. Today the federal government raises far more revenue from its share of resource royalties than it does from income taxes.

Roseau River will block two railway lines going into the United States. At least six other Manitoba First Nations have vowed to block railway lines at the same time. The financial cost of the railway blockades will be in the millions but the real impact is likely to be the international image of Canada. Canada was the United Nations choice as the "best country in the world to live in" for seven straight years, but while Canada was number one on the index, Canadian First Nations communities mired in extreme poverty were set at the 63rd level on the UN scale. Over 6,000 First Nations land claims are now in limbo.

"What pisses me off when I watch the Caledonia violence" said an angry Chief Nelson, "is the immigrants to our lands didn't bring the diamonds or other resources from Europe in their little wooden boats, yet they have the gall to demand we, the owners of the land and resources, must now pay taxes to them on top of their theft." Treaties 1 to 11 representatives went home last week from a Winnipeg conference to seek support in their regions to initiate railway blockades in traditional territories.


Thanks to Verbena-19 for the lead.

This “terrorist” stuff smells bad

The Harper is starting to irk me again. After reading a portion of the Harper's statement to the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce

The 17 men who allegedly planned to bomb targets in southern Ontario are symbols of hatred seeking to tear apart Canada's "diverse and democratic society," Prime Minister Stephen Harper told the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce.

"Let us never forget that such people today, as in the past, may make use of the symbols of a culture or a faith, but they speak for neither," Mr. Harper told the chamber's annual awards ceremony on Saturday night. "They represent nothing but hatred."

and after reading what Doris said

Terror suspects who want to avoid jail should quit Canada, says Day

Jim Brown, Canadian Press
Published: Monday, June 12, 2006

OTTAWA (CP) – Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day says there's an easy way for foreign-born terror suspects to avoid spending years in jail in Canada- just agree to go back where they came from.

In a spirited defence of federal deportation policy, Day insisted Monday that Ottawa would be happy if anyone deemed a security threat would leave the country voluntarily.

"If they say no and they want to stay, they can start an appeal process that usually takes a few years," Day said outside the Commons.

"We can't allow a person who has been deemed a significant security threat to be free. So they are put in detention just while the appeal process runs its course. At any time they can leave, walk out, and return to their country of origin."

Critics say voluntary departure isn't a realistic option for people who have often fled to Canada precisely because they feared torture in their homelands because of their political beliefs.

and what a former CSIS agent has said

The Hill Times, June 12th, 2006
By Kate Malloy and F. Abbas Rana

Tory, Grit MPs say hands off immigration and multi-culturalism

But one former CSIS intelligence officer suspects 17 high-profile arrests were politically motivated and questions the timing.


Meanwhile, one former CSIS intelligence officer, who did not want to be identified, told The Hill Times last week that the arrests could have been done earlier instead of getting CSIS to watch them for the last two years and "nurture a training ground."

The former CSIS intelligence officer, who said it's likely the Prime Minister was briefed on this issue on the day he took office last January, said he thinks the arrests are part of an overall bigger agenda that CSIS has to demonstrate Canada's cooperation with the U.S. and the U.K. in the so-called war on terror.

"Why wait until now? The Supreme Court is going to hear the certificate process. The service is battling the Arar situation where they're being told, 'What's secret information? Where are you getting it?' I used to work there and we used to do the media spin to make ourselves look good. So why wouldn't that be a part of it? Why now when they've been on them for two years, oh yeah, apparently they bought the stuff [ammonium nitrate]. Apparently they knew so long in advance they were going to buy the stuff, the stuff was replaced with fake stuff, there wasn't even a threat. I'm not saying that these people didn't have the intent. All I'm saying is why are we putting so much resources and watching people when they should have been picked up a long time ago.

and this

Lawyers blast media ban in Canada terrorism case

Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:18pm ET14

By Natalie Armstrong and Rachelle Younglai

BRAMPTON, Ontario (Reuters) – A publication ban on the court hearings of 17 men accused of planning al Qaeda-inspired attacks in Ontario is just another example that the men stand no chance of a fair trial, some defense lawyers said on Monday.

Lawyers said prosecutors asked for the ban only after the government had more than a week to publicly portray the Muslim men as terrorists who plotted to detonate massive bombs in Ottawa and Toronto and — according to the defense — behead the prime minister.

"They want to close the restaurant after they've had a banquet," lawyer Rocco Galati told reporters said outside the courthouse in Brampton, a Toronto suburb.

"After they've had 10 days with the media, feeding the media with whatever they want to feed the media … they now have the audacity to request a publication ban of all proceedings from today's date."

Publication bans, which are often requested by the defense to protect the right to an unbiased jury, prohibit the media from reporting evidence presented in court hearings before the formal trial begins.

my conviction that there is something really smelly going on has strengthened. Why is a Prime Minister, of all people in the country, speaking as though the alleged terrorists are indeed terrorists? Surely when something like this is before the courts, the PM should not speak publicly about it. I mean, talk about prejudicing a jury! What he's modelling is absolutely dangerous for this country! Is he so eager for his majority that he can't hold back? Or is this calculated to get him that majority he so desperately wants. May it never come to fruition!

With thanks to Big City Lib and goyanamasu at the EnMasse forum for the leads.