Thursday, April 17, 2014

Have you seen this woman?

Alison Rediford incognito

Up next .....

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Is your Member of Parliament lying? More than likely especially if they're Conservative!

Good Day Readers:

Before you know it candidates for the 2015 federal election will come knocking at your door pandering for your vote. Will they be suffering from Pinocchioism? Here's how to tell.

Clare L. Pieuk
Experts share eight things to know about how to spot a liar: 'We're giving an edge to the lie-catchers'

Paul Luke
Monday, March 17, 2014
Life is a dance of deception, much of it consisting of "white" or altruistic lies designed to spare other people's geelings. (Getty Images/Thinkstock)

Kelowna, B.C., psychologists Michael Woodworth and Stephen Porter train judges, police, lawyers, psychologists and even the FBI in the art of spotting lies. “We’re trying to give professionals such as police a tool box of valid techniques for spotting high-stakes lies,” Mr. Porter says. “We’re giving an edge to the lie-catchers.” Reporter Paul Luke shares eight things you should know about the UBC profs’ work.

1. Deception is a universal practice. Life is a dance of deception, much of it consisting of “white” or altruistic lies designed to spare other people’s feelings, Messrs. Porter and Woodworth say. “We don’t know of anybody who doesn’t use deception. It’s a normal part of human social interaction,” Mr. Porter says. “We’re all going to use some level of deception through our lives and there’s nothing unhealthy about it. There are shades of grey that go all the way up to the full-on black.”

Woodworth say. “We don’t know of anybody who doesn’t use deception. It’s a normal part of human social interaction,” Mr. Porter says. “We’re all going to use some level of deception through our lives and there’s nothing unhealthy about it. There are shades of grey that go all the way up to the full-on black.”

2. Deception is an evolutionary adaptation. It can enable people to become successful in acquiring resources and passing their genes through social relationships. “Lying on your online dating profile can lead to more mating opportunities,” Mr. Porter says. On the flip side, you could become Bernie Madoff, the U.S. investment adviser sentenced to 150 years in prison for his Ponzi scheme. “Going to prison or being ostracized by your social group is not evolutionarily advantageous,” Mr. Porter notes.

3. People, on average, lie twice daily. At the same time, humans have what Mr. Porter calls “a truth bias.” We generally assume others are telling the truth — unless given reason to think otherwise.

4. Nervousness is not a sure sign of a lie. The untrained individual often pounces on nervousness as a symptom of deception, Mr. Woodworth says, but that can be a mistake. In what is called the “Othello effect,” a person may show signs of anxiety under questioning but be telling the truth. Any customs officers at border crossings knows this. “People start feeling nervous and guilty although they haven’t got a bloody thing in their bags,” Mr. Woodworth says.

5. Lying is on the rise. Narcissism, a personality trait associated with lying, has been increasing since the 1970s, research shows. Self-reported rates of plagiarism and cheating among university students have also risen in recent decades, Mr. Porter says. “I’m not a moral philosopher but I think we should keep deception to a minimum,” Mr. Porter says. “When it becomes a highly accepted or even encouraged way of dealing with others it will foster a huge amount of distrust.”

6. Always watch the forehead. Many people who tell big lies acquire a veneer of polish, Mr. Porter says, avoiding the stereotypes of fidgeting or excessive arm movements. But there is no such thing as a perfect, flawless lie, the pair say. Those trained to detect deception can spot the giveaways. Murderers pleading on television for the return of loved ones will try to mimic distress, Mr. Porter says. But the “the grief muscles” in the forehead — the corrugators — are difficult to control, he says. A lying pleader may accidentally activate a nearby muscle — the frontalis — which conveys surprise. he says. “People trying to fake distress may look surprised or astonished,” he says. “They look like deer caught in headlights.”

7. There are other signs. Mr. Woodworth says fakers unintentionally choose words that distance themselves from what they’re saying. Instead of saying “I” or “we,” they turn to words such as “anybody” or “somebody.” Even psychopaths — who are 2.5 times more likely to win release in parole hearings — may leak other emotions into the face when they’re faking remorse, Mr. Porter says. “They often show something called duping delight,” Mr. Porter says. “They enjoy pulling the wool over people’s eyes and a trained observer can detect a little smirk.”

8. Even the best liars fail, in some way. Highly motivated people with a lot riding on their deceptions will screw up more often, Mr. Woodworth says. “Keeping track of all the communication channels when you’re lying puts an extra cognitive load on a person,” Mr. Porter says. “You have to keep your story straight, watch your body language and facial expression. Even the most practised liars can’t keep leakage out of all the channels.”

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Whatever happened to the "B-word" and "F-word?"

Good Day Readers:

Ever noticed the alacrity with which politicians offer to pay back public money as if there was no wrongdoing - but only after being caught? Alison Redford is no exception. Recently, Albertans have been "impressed" with a litany of her highly, highly questionable expenses - and that's being very charitable! Why doesn't the media use the "B-word" or "F-word" (no, no not those - Breach of Trust/Fraud) to describe such transactions? How do you figure the Canada Revenue Agency would react if you tried that on your income tax return?
Clare L. Pieuk

Yet another reason why Vic Toews should never have been appointed to Queen's Bench!

"Commissioner Paulson arrest those people over there they don't stand with us, therefore, they're all  pedophiles!"

Good Day Readers:

Note the bold, italized paragraph highlighted by CyberSmokeBlog which says it all.

Clare L. Pieuk

Tories secretly gave Canadian military OK to share info despite torture risk

Jim Bronskill
Sunday, April 13, 2014
A man walks into the interior of the wing of Sarpoza Prison in Kandahar City where Taliban prisoners are kept March 20, 2007. (Graham Thomson/Postmedia News)

OTTAWA — The Conservative government has secretly ordered the Canadian military to share information with allies even when there’s a serious risk it could lead to torture.

The Defence Department was making good progress on developing a directive from the minister to put the policy into effect, a newly declassified memo shows.

The memo reveals Defence was slated to be the fifth and final federal agency to apply the Harper government’s instruction to exchange information with a foreign agency when doing so may give rise to a “substantial risk” of torture.

The others are the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, the RCMP, the Canada Border Services Agency and Communications Security Establishment Canada, the electronic eavesdropping agency known as CSE.

The Canadian Press obtained a copy of the November 2011 memo under the Access to Information Act.
National Defence cannot release a copy of the resulting directive on information sharing — nor say when it was completed and issued — because it’s a classified document, said department spokeswoman Tina Crouse.

“We don’t have any comment right now,” she said.

The federal policy has drawn sharp criticism from human rights advocates and opposition MPs, who say it effectively condones torture, contrary to international law and Canada’s United Nations commitments.

The war in Afghanistan is a stark illustration of the fact Canadian military forces can and do develop close relationships with foreign security forces that are unquestionably responsible for torture, said Alex Neve, secretary general for Amnesty Canada.

A policy that leaves the door open for the possibility of collaboration even if torture may result “is particularly troubling,” Neve said in an interview.

The memo says the Defence directive was to flow from a federal framework that “establishes a consistent process of decision making” across departments and agencies when the exchange of national-security related information puts someone at serious risk of being tortured.

The four-page, 2010 framework document, previously released under the access law, says when there is a “substantial risk” that sending information to — or soliciting information from — a foreign agency would result in torture, the matter should be referred to the responsible deputy minister or agency head.

In deciding what to do, the agency head will consider various factors, including the threat to Canada’s national security and the nature and imminence of the threat; the status of Canada’s relationship with - and the human rights record of — the foreign agency; and the rationale for believing that sharing the information would lead to torture.

The framework says it applies primarily to sharing with foreign government agencies and militaries, but also with military coalitions, alliances and international organizations.

The newly released memo, prepared for Peter MacKay - Defence Minister at the time - says the directive for his department was being “tailored to recognize the unique operational needs of a military organization.”
Maher Arar poses for a picture in Kamloops, British Columbia in 2006. The Syrian-born Canadian was tortured in Syria after he was departed by the United States. (Jeff Bassett/Postmedia News file)

In 2011, then-public Safety Minister Vic Toews issued directives to CSIS, the RCMP and the federal border agency that closely followed the wording of the government-wide framework. That same year, MacKay issued a similar directive to CSE, which reports to the Defence Minister.

Maher Arar, a Syrian-born Canadian, was detained in New York in September 2002 and deported soon after by U.S. authorities — ending up in a vile Damascus prison cell. Under torture, he gave false confessions to Syrian military intelligence officers about involvement with al-Qaida.

A federal commission of inquiry, led by Justice Dennis O’Connor, concluded that faulty information the RCMP passed to the Americans very likely led to the Ottawa telecommunications engineer’s traumatic detention.

O’Connor recommended that information never be provided to a foreign country where there is a credible risk it will cause or contribute to the use of torture.

Critics say the recent federal directives on information sharing are squarely at odds with that recommendation.

It would have been easy to write a policy that conforms with it, Neve said.

“Analyze the situation. If you think that sharing this information is likely to contribute to torture abroad, don’t do it.”

Monday, April 14, 2014

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Harper government: "What's done in secret will be shouted from the rooftops!"

Questions linger about secret panel for Marc Nadon's appointment

Judge-picking committee vowed secrecy, so how did Harper know about its deliberations?

By Leslie MacKinnon
Saturday, April 12, 2014
A secret committee of MPs listed Justice Marc Nadon as one of three candidates the government could consider for an appointment to the Supreme Court. Nadon, a respected Federal Court Judge, was ultimately found not eligible for the position. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)

It's been three weeks since the Supreme Court told the government its nominee, Justice Marc Nadon, is not eligible to sit as a member of the court.

Not only is little known about how he was chosen, there's also no new candidate in sight.

Nadon's name was on a list of three potential candidates. That list of three, which had been drawn up by a selection committee made up of MPs, was then sent to the government. That means two other candidates are presumably available to fill the empty Quebec seat on the top court. But it's not known who they are, or whether a new batch of candidates will be drawn up.

All that's certain is that the top court has been staffed by eight judges, not nine, since the end of August, and that it bears a heavy workload, including such nation-defining cases as the future of the Senate and physician-assisted suicide.

The top court ruled that Nadon, a Federal Court judge and native Quebecer who lives in Ottawa, couldn't fill the Quebec slot because he's not a sitting Quebec judge nor a current member of the Quebec bar.

Adam Dodek, a lawyer and law professor, said in a phone interview that Nadon's appointment shows the system is broken.

"It hasn't delivered on what this government and previous governments promised Canadians, which is accountability and transparency in the Supreme Court selection process, and it's failed utterly in both respects."

An ad hoc committee of five MPs, bound by a confidentiality agreement, whittled down a list of nominees chosen by the government to three names. One of those names was Nadon's.

Secrecy was paramount

Françoise Boivin, the NDP MP on the committee, said secrecy was paramount. "It's so confidential that we couldn't keep any documents; we received things on USB keys that you had to return, and you had codes. It's a cone of silence type of thing.

"The iron-clad clandestine process made it all the more puzzling when Prime Minister Stephen Harper said in the House of Commons on April 1, "During consultations, all of the parties in the House agreed with the idea of appointing a Quebecer from the Federal Court to the Supreme Court."

Harper then went further: "The Liberal Party in fact supported the nominee for the Supreme Court," he said.
Liberal justice critic Sean Casey has written a letter to the commissioner of federal judicial affairs asking for an investigation into Harper's comment.

Liberal MP Irwin Cotler has filed dozens of questions in Parliament, including a query about what consultations Harper was referring to and how did he find out about them. The government has 45 days to reply.
Boivin thinks Harper's comments might have been a trap to force committee members to end their vow of secrecy. "I know, I'm not born yesterday, as a lawyer I know exactly what they're trying to do," she said, in a telephone interview.

Did Harper breach confidentiality?

Harper is not himself breaking the confidentiality agreement, Boivin says. "How can he be breaking confidentiality when he's not part of the committee?"

Asked if someone else on the committee could have leaked details to Harper or his office, Boivin said nothing she's heard from Harper leads her to believe he has genuine knowledge of the proceedings. "It's empty words in my book, because he doesn't know."

Given that Harper has spoken about not just the results but the actual deliberations of the committee, it's possible Boivin and the other opposition MP on the panel - Liberal Dominic LeBlanc - could simply use their parliamentary privilege and spill the beans about how Nadon was chosen.

Legally, if the words are said in the House of Commons, parliamentary privilege is a powerful implement that bestows legal immunity from civil or criminal liability.

LeBlanc did not respond to a phone call about whether Harper's remarks would prompt him to break his confidentiality pledge.

Boivin says it would "kill her" to break the agreement. "I have a reputation as a lawyer, as a person of her word."

The three other MPs on the committee are Conservatives - Robert Goguen, Jacques Gourde and Shelly Glover.

Asked if the selection of one of the top judges in the country should be decided more transparently, Boivin said the process should be taken out of the hands of politicians. On the other hand, she also thinks the process worked extremely well when Justice Richard Wagner was chosen in 2012.

"I was so happy with it," she said, stipulating she could say no more.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court has been operating with a vacancy for the past eight months and Justice Louis LeBel must retire by November, vacating another seat.

Friday, April 11, 2014

It took the Canucks to figure it out ..... eh?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Harper want a cracker?