Monday, March 31, 2014

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Rocco the legal rock star ..... "Rocco! Rocco! Rocco! ..."

Good Day Readers::

The following article appeared in the Saturday, March 29, 2014 issue of the Winnipeg Free Press without attribution. It's significant because last year Mr. Galati filed a motion in the Federal Court of Canada to try to force the Canadian Judicial Council to make public a letter Guy "The Cat" Pratte a high-profile Ottawa-Montreal lawyer wrote after he suddenly and abruptly resigned from the Douglas Inquiry as its Independent Counsel (August 2012) purportedly representing the public interest. The relevant passage has been highlighted below by CyberSmokeBlog.
"The Cat"

To date Mr. Pratte has been quite coy with the media only suggesting his letter of resignation was lengthy and critical of the Canadian Judicial Council's handling of the Douglas Inquiry. A quick check of the CJC's website shows there's no mention (at least yet) of the Federal Court's decision.

The decision will, of course, as some point appear on CanLII an internet-based service that reproduces court decisions, however, given the volume of rulings recorded every day, it chronically runs weeks behind. In the meantime, CyberSmokeBlog will canvass sources for a file number - anyone know it? Depending on the ruling's length it will either be reproduced in its entirety or the most relevant passages reprinted. One of the key questions is what time fuse did the Federal Court attach to the provision the CJC must go public with the Pratte letter. Remember, The Council has up until now steadfastly refused to do so.

Irony of ironies.

Just this week (March 26th) Canadian Judicial Council Executive Director/Senior Legal Counsel announced in a Press Release the CJC had set up an internet-based online system whereby the public could submit  recommendations related to its complaints procedures - Great idea Mr. Sabourin, problem is, you're only 60-years too late. This suggests The Council must be totally ....ed. Traditionally the legal system has avoided direct public input like the plague.
'Stormin' Norman Sabourin

The relase of the Pratte letter should prove to be a treasure trove for those wishing to make recommendations. Talk about impeccable timing!

And remember Manitoba when Rocco "The Rock Star" Galati returns to Winnipeg to defend complainant Alex Chapman at the Douglas Inquiry whenever it resumes (hopefully, this decade), please refrain from mobbing him. He's good he's very good but he's no Justin Bieber.

Clare L. Pieuk
Disciplinary hearings on Douglas flap OK, should continue

Saturday, March 29, 2014

A Federal Court has ruled a disciplinary hearing into the conduct of Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench Justice Lori Douglas was not biased and ought not to be suspended.

The ruling, released Friday, is the latest procedural twist in the confusing case of the judge accused of sexual harassment after her husband, lawyer Jack King, took and distributed nude photos of her and tried to arrange a tryst with his client, Alex Chapman.

The Federal Court's ruling is, to some degree, moot, because the Canadian Judicial Council's disciplinary panel has already resigned.

The panel stepped down shortly before the Federal Court was slated to delve into accusations lodged by Douglas that the CJC panel was biased against her.

Douglas argued the CJC's panel was biased because it allowed improper and adversarial cross-examination of King, which revealed private details about their sex life. That occurred back in the summer of 2012 when the committee first convened in Winnipeg for the start of the high-profile hearing.

Because the disciplinary panel resigned, much of the bias issue was set aside in Federal Court.

In Friday's decision, the Federal Court did side with Douglas on one key matter - the release of what's believed to be a damning letter of resignation penned by the CJC's former independent counsel. The letter, which has been sealed, is believed to be highly critical of the CJC's process and the panel. The CJC argued the letter ought to remain confidential under solicitor-client privilege, but the court ruled no such privilege exists and ordered the letter released.

The CJC recently created a new disciplinary panel, but it's not yet clear whether it will now begin hearings anew or whether either side will appeal the Federal Court's ruling.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 29, 2014 A14.

Friday, March 28, 2014

The police and courts will decide and if they don't voters will!

Rob Ford: I'm not a criminal

'We're booming. Tourism is up, taxes are down. When people go to bed at night, they can trust me'

Friday, March 28, 2014

Rob Ford speaks to CBC's Matt Galloway

Rob Ford touted his "proven track record of success" in an interview with host Matt Galloway on CBC Toronto's Metro Morning radio show today, despite a year in which the Toronto mayor has been mired in scandal.

Ford spent much of the interview talking about his record as a fiscal conservative who's helped boost business in Canada's largest city while controlling costs at city hall.

"We're booming," said Ford, who is seeking re-election in the October 27 vote. "Tourism is up, taxes are down. When people go to bed at night, they can trust me with their hard-earned taxpayer dollars."

Later in the interview, Galloway asked Ford about some of the scandals that have enveloped his office in the past year, including his admission to smoking crack cocaine and pending extortion charges against his friend and former driver Sandro Lisi. Here's how the exchange went:
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford appeared on Metro Morning Friday, telling host Matt Galloway 'I'm not a criminal ' in response to questions about his behaviour over the last year. (David Donnelly/CBC)

Galloway: "Why should anybody trust anything that you say?

Ford: "I have a proven track record of 14 years of success"

Galloway: "And part of that track record is you lying about smoking crack, lying about a reporter being in your backyard  … lying about saying you weren't going to drink anymore, and you were caught again drinking …. So based on that, why should anyone trust anything that you say?"

How much?

Ford: "Was I perfect? No. I'm not a criminal … I haven't been charged with anything. Don't call me a criminal, Matt, because I'm not a criminal."

Ford also restated his demand that if police have a tape of him smoking crack, it should be released. He said he wants to know how much police are spending investigating him.

Watch all the candidate interviews

Metro Morning host Matt Galloway interviewed five Toronto mayoralty candidates this week.
You can watch videos of all the interviews here:
Galloway then continued to ask Ford about his record in office: "You've admitted to buying drugs, you've admitted to smoking crack … those are behaviours I think that a lot of people would characterize as criminal and as not becoming the office of mayor. Do you think those behaviours should be considered alongside the rest of your record?"

Ford: "It's part of it. What you're saying has been said for the last year, over and over. People are blocking it out. If people want to judge me on my personal life, go ahead, people are going to judge me on my record."

During the interview - which you can watch by clicking on the image at the top of this story - Ford once again stated his often-repeated line that he's saved the city "a billion dollars."

Tax saving?

Yesterday, the city manager came short of backing that claim, saying the city has implemented a number of initiatives that have added up to $972 million in budget savings.
Ford said the elimination of the $60 car registration tax accounts for $240 million, pushing him over the $1 billion total.

Galloway challenged the mayor on this, saying the car tax elimination represents a reduction of revenue, not a savings in expenditures.

"To me … that is a tax reduction," said Ford. "When you don't have to pay that $60, I have saved the taxpayers over years more than $240 million."

"My character speaks for itself"

Ford again repeated that he's done everything he's promised to do, which he said speaks to his character. He said he has never missed a debate and would put his attendance record against anyone's on city council.
He characterized his use of crack as "experimenting with drugs," and said it is behind him.

"This is not something that happened last night," he said. "For the last year, every day the media's talked about it. I've admitted to it. And people know that. So what more do you want me to say?"

Ford pointed to his weight loss as a sign he has moved past crack use. "Look at me, I'm a lot thinner than I was before," he said to Galloway. "It's about living a healthier life."

Ford ended the interview by saying that 90 per cent of Toronto would agree that they are better off than they were four years ago
Ford opponents Olivia Chow, David Soknacki, John Tory and Karen Stintz all appeared on Metro Morning this week.

Sue their butts off!

Conservative Party of Canada fires Butts as Regional Director

By Monte Somenberg
Thursday, March 27, 2014
The president of the Conservative Party of Canada’s riding association in Haldimand and Norfolk is consulting a lawyer after losing his position as a CPC Regional Director.

Wally Butts of St. Williams has been Regional Director for Hamilton-Niagara District for the past 10 years. Thursday, Butts said he was recently fired because of a disagreement with party executives in Ottawa over an incident last week in the newly-formed riding of Oakville-North Burlington.

“It’s all over a bunch of stupidity,” Butts said. “I’m not able to talk about it. It’s in the hands of the lawyers right now. It’s a ridiculous thing that’s happened.”

The story begins March 19 when Mississauga-Brampton South MP Eve Adams made an unscheduled appearance at a meeting of the CPC Executive in the new riding of Oakville-North Burlington.

Adams recently moved to Oakville with her fiancé Dimitri Soudas, Executive Director of the CPC and Butts’ boss as a Regional Director. Adams attended the closed-door meeting of the executive and reportedly attempted to participate.

After investigating the incident, Butts was of the opinion that Adams acted contrary to the Constitution of the Conservative Party of Canada Electoral District Associations.

Butts confirmed reports saying the Oakville-North Burlington Executive told Adams they had a full agenda and that she should come back another time. Adams reportedly did not take kindly to this and there was an argument.

The Riding Executive referred the incident to Butts. Following his investigation, Butts criticized Adams’ behaviour in an e-mail to party headquarters.

“This kind of conduct is totally unjustified, in my opinion, and serves only to sully the party,” Butts said in the e-mail. “Also, making personal attacks on Board Members is definitely not warranted. When this situation originally arose, it was made clear to me that Dimitri (Soudas) would not be involved, and Eve was to be treated just like any other candidate seeking nomination. I am in a totally untenable position in this matter as Dimitri is my ultimate boss.”

The day after sending the e-mail, Butts was called to a meeting and relieved of his directorship.

Butts says he was concerned because Adams’ alleged behaviour contravened Section 11, article 3 of the CPC constitution for electoral district associations. It says:

“All approved nomination contestants (as listed by the nominations committee) shall be invited to attend meetings of the Board of Directors; however, nomination contestants shall not be permitted to participate in any discussions or deliberations regarding the nominations.”

“I was trying to ensure a level playing field, that’s all,” Butts said. “I was trying to prevent them from stealing an unfair advantage. And I got my ass canned for it.”

Butts would not specify how much the director’s position paid. He described the wage as “a median income.” He also doesn’t know whether this situation will cost him the presidency of the Haldimand-Norfolk riding association.

Butts feels the firing makes him look “stupid.” He is exploring the possibility of legal action with Simcoe lawyer Paul Hosack. Butts added his email is backing up with messages of support from party members across the country.

Butts doubts that Prime Minister Stephen Harper was consulted before the firing. Butts said Harper was out of the country when the events leading up to his dismissal transpired.

The Reformer reached out to Adams and Conservative Party headquarters in Ottawa for comment. There was no reply as of press time.

The office of local MP Diane Finley, Minister of Public Works in the Harper cabinet, was also contacted.

Assistant Alyson Queen said Finley is aware of the matter and is monitoring the situation with interest.

“Wally has always served our local electoral district association extremely well, particularly as president,” Finley said in a statement. “In fact, just last week, his term as president was renewed. I have every confidence in Wally and his abilities.”

Monte Sonnenberg
519-426-3528 ext. 150

So you want to look like Stephen Harper ..... eh? Jeezus, why?

Good Day Readers:

Here are some photographs of what famous Canadians might look like with a Stephen Harper wig. CyberSmokeBlog's favourite? The Wright-Duffy-Wallin-Brazeau-Harb look:
The following images are from, Here's how a Stephen Harper 'Dear Leader' haircut would look on famous Canadians (Huffington Post: Zi-Ann Lum, Thursday, March 27, 2014).

Clare L. Pieuk

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Civility among lawyers!

Good Day Readers:

CyberSmokeBlog has been aware for some time of The Bitter Lawyer website but hadn't checked it out recently. In its continuing search for "postables" CSB found this today. Try not to pee/rip your pants/pantyhose doubled over laughing.

Clare L. Pieuk

Jeezus, there are still three more episodes to go! By the time they finish will the other lawyer be a potty mouth too?

Connotation vers Denotion ..... a-hole lawyer; The Typo Lawyer; The Wine-Dick Lawyers; et. al.

If you're still dry and your pants/pantyhose remain intact, perhaps you need to to chill out and lighten up.

Acting out every law student's deepest and darkest fantasy!

"What's wrong with a little sluttiness Your Honour? Good thing you're wearing a robe - is that a gavel or are you just thrilled to see a sexy female lawyer?"

"Slutty enough for you Your Honour?"

Judge Kopf: "Yes, yes please take it off all off ... pant ... pant ... pant ...!"

"Here have a Snickers feel better now? Mmmm good eh but so am I!"
Federal Judge offers fashion advice to female lawyers

Richard Kopf calls himself 'dirty old man,' presents rules for courtroom attire

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Lincoln, Nebraska - In a blog entry, United States District Court Judge Richard Kopf, of Lincoln offers three rules he suggests young women lawyers "should follow" when considering how to dress for court.

Kopf presents the rules while relating stories about his own experiences both in the courtroom, and in his private life, writing, "in candor, I have been a dirty old man since I was a very young man."

The judge then relates his observations about one "wonderfully talented and very pretty female lawyer."
Kopf writes: "She is brilliant, she writes well, she speaks eloquently, she is zealous but not overly so, she is always prepared, she treats others including her opponents, with civility and respect, she wears very short skirts and shows lots of her ample chest. I especially appreciate the last two attributes."

Kopf describes how female law clerks I his building made a point of observing the lawyer, and how the clerks deemed her appearance "unprofessional."

The judge concludes by offering three "rules that young women lawyers should follow when considering how to dress for court:"

"1. You can't win. Men are both pigs and prudes. Get over it.

2. It is not about you. That goes double when you are appearing in front of a jury.

3. Think about the law clerks. If they are likely to label you, like Jane Curtin, an ignorant slut behind your back, tone it down."

Judge Richard Kopf, 67, is the senior judge in the U.S. District Court for Nebraska. He was nominated by President George H. W. Bush in 1992.

Why should a majority subsidize a minority ..... a tax break for whom? Harperonomics 101!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Miss Taxpayer Beautiful ("You look gorgeous darling but your makeup's on crooked!") versus the chiropractor .....

Good Day Readers:

You might remember this little Eve Adams number from some negative publicity she garnered not long ago. It seems during the last election she tried to claim something like $700 for personal care products but when Elections Canada challenged these expenditures she got into a snit arguing some of it was for her staff and volunteers - but of course everyone had to look body beautiful.

EC wasn't buying it so whacked her back to about $200. Actually, if candidates are voted into office based on looks CyberSmokeBlog gives its vote to the chiropractor who's prettier and probably a lot smarter too.

Clare L. Pieuk
A controversy in the Conservative Party of Canada

Tuesday, March 25, 2015
First it was the Liberal Party of Canada that had its problems with so-called "open nominations" for candidates seeking to run in the pending Trinity-Spadina byelection.

Now the Conservative Party of Canada is having its problems around the same kinds of issues, with an added layer of complication because of a personal relationship between the party's Executive Director and one of its MPs.

The riding in question is a new one with no current sitting member: Oakville North-Burlington. And the problems began when a sitting MP from another riding - Mississauga-Brampton South - decided she didn't want to run for re-election in that riding, but rather, wanted to switch to the Oakville-North Burlington one, despite winning in 2011 by a healthy margin.

Eve Adams was a Mississauga city councillor until the 2011 federal election, when she ran for the Conservatives and upset a rising star in the Liberal Party, Navdeep Bains. But since then, Adams and Conservative Party Executive Director Dimitri Soudas have become romantically linked. They're now engaged to be married. The couple now lives in Oakville North-Burlington and so, Adams wants to run in the riding in which she now lives.
Conservative MP Eve Adams and Conservative Party Executive Director Dimitri Soudas.

That has upset the plans of another candidate who had already set her sights on the riding: Dr. Natalia Lishchyna, an Oakville chiropractor and college professor. Lishchyna can't understand why Adams wouldn't simply stay in the riding she's already represented since 2011. Based on the 2011 election returns, Oakville North - Burlington is a more Conservative riding and thus presumably easier to win. Lishchyna figures it would be better for the party as a whole if Adams stayed in Mississauga-Brampton South, used her superior name recognition and experience to hold that seat, and left the "easier" seat for her.
Dr. Natalia Lishchyna

For her part, Adams is somewhat perplexed that she shouldn't continue to do what she's been doing for years as both a city councillor and an MP: seek a mandate from the voters to represent the community in which she actually lives.

But this story has got more intense because of some nasty behind the scenes machinations. On March 19, Adams showed up to meet with the Oakville North-Burlington riding association. She is an MP, but technically, not the MP of that riding. So the question of whether she actually had any standing to attend that behind-closed-doors meeting was raised. According to a few people I spoke to who were at the meeting, when one member of the riding association's board asked her to leave, she allegedly declined, prompting that Board Member to call the police.

Complicating matters is the fact that Dimitri Soudas, as Executive Director of the party, has the final say on when nominating meetings can happen. But given the obvious conflict, he has recused himself from influencing the Oakville North-Burlington race. Except he was there, with Adams, the night of the brouhaha, albeit not in the actual meeting, but rather, waiting in the hallway.
The boundaries of the new riding at the centre of the controversy.
The Soudas-Adams relationship complicates this nomination fight, but it's not unprecedented in Conservative Party circles. The late Senator Doug Finlay ran the party machinery when his wife, cabinet minister Diane Finlay, was running for office.

But some Soudas critics in the party charge he's abusing his position to favour Adams. They find it hard to believe Soudas won't use his authority behind the scenes to influence when the Oakville North-Burlington nominating meeting will be called, presumably to Adams' advantage. They also claim Soudas fired an Ontario Regional Organizer named Wally Butts because Butts was making a stink about Adams' contesting Oakville North-Burlington.

Here's an email Butts sent to the Conservative Party's Director of Political Operations on March 20:
Fred (DeLorey) -
Got a report this morning that Eve Adams showed up (late) at a Board meeting 
in ONB [Oakville North-Burlington] last night, while the Board was discussing sensitive issues.
It was reported to me that she was driven to the venue by Dimitri Soudas.
She was respectfully asked to leave several times and she refused, as the 
Board's business was not complete.
As the standoff ensued, several of the Board members left the meeting, 
leaving the remainder, which no longer constituted a quorum, so the Board 
could no longer continue with the business at hand.
Apparently she was also very rude to the Board and President, commenting that 
she contributes more to the Party than does the President, and she has 
access to CIMS for data information. [CIMS is a Conservative Party database.]
This kind of conduct is totally unjustified, in my opinion, and serves only 
to sully the Party.
As no nomination has been called yet in ONB, she is not an official 
candidate, and deserves no special privileges at this point. She should not 
have access to CIMS either, as those lists are made available only when an 
individual is declared by the National committee to be a candidate.
Also, making personal attacks on Board members is definately not warranted.
When this situation originally arose, it was made clear to me that Dimitri 
would not be involved, and Eve was to be treated just like any other
candidate seeking nomination as a candidate.
I am in a totally untenable position in this matter as Dimitri is my
ultimate boss.
Can you please take action in this matter to straighten out this worsening
Wally Butts,
Regional Organizer,
Hamilton, Niagara Regions,
Conservative Party of Canada
Butts was fired by Soudas shortly after firing off that email. A Conservative Party source insists Butts wasn't fired because of this controversy, that the two have a good relationship going back more than a decade. It was simply time to make some hard decisions to the party's personnel.

There are, however, more emails. Here is an excerpt of a confidential email widely distributed by a Conservative Party CFO to a list of party insiders on March 24:
The way our party’s leadership treats its paid staff is a clear indication of what’s to come for volunteers. This is not just about Wally, it’s the principle. When HQ plays games in our local nominations process it significantly impacts our ability to win ridings in the next election. The political process depends on the accountability, honesty and integrity of our nominations process – a process that is being compromised in Oakville-North Burlington by Wally’s dismissal.
And then there's this from another Conservative riding association president, also sent on March 24:
When I received an email blast announcing Mr Butts' dismissal, I was shocked that the party would handle a termination in such a non professional manner, as well as it's exposing the party to bad press and, if it were me, an unlawful dismissal suit against the party. I am sending this email to the Prime Minister's office, with copies to the party executive. My purpose in doing so is to get this situation resolved to everyone's satisfaction before it blows up in our face. I do not agree with Mr Butt's (sic) dismissal and unequivocally state that his leadership and support for our EDA [Electoral District Association] has been outstanding, and not deserving the treatment he has received.
And from yet another Conservative riding association president: "What caused this is known and a sham and an embarrassment to all surrounding ridings. I hope the Prime Minister dismisses those involved."

Nominating races are always one of the hardest parts of politics. It's a fight within the family and these battles often leave hard feelings. It's possible as many as 10 sitting Conservative MPs could face nomination challenges, despite the party's wish that that not happen. In fact, Prime Minister Harper yesterday came out and endorsed all sitting MPs in a bid to lower the temperature.

It's a reminder that the worst fights in politics are rarely across the floor with members of other parties. They're inside the party's own tent, which makes them particularly hurtful.

Image credits:; @D_Soudas/Twitter; undated handout photo; Elections Canada. 

You know it's going badly for the Conservatives when even the beaver pees on Stephen Harper!

How would you like a legal bill like this?

Legal Explanation of Billable Hours

September 15, 2011: $75 for meeting with client and drafting a memo

September 22, 2011: $50 for revising divorce petition

October 6, 2011: $100 for meeting and drafting a memo to file

October 25, 2011: $100 for meeting and drafting memo to file

November 17, 2011: $200 for meeting with client

March 1, 2012: $75 for meeting with client

Layperson Explanation of Billable Hours

September 15, 2011: 2 - "Duck Tacos" at hotel with client

September 22, 2011: "Motorboating" at hotel with client

October 6, 2011: "Cannooki-ing" with client at hotel

October 25: Dinner and sex in parking lot of hotel (3 - "Duck Tacos")

November 17, 2011: "Motorboating" and 4 - "Duck Tacos" at client's home

March 1, 2012: 1 - "Duck Taco" plus 1- "Motorboating" and 1 - "Cannooki-ing" at client's home

"1, 2, 3, 4, 5 o'clock rock ..... I'm not worried anymore give me some cocaine." - Cops: "6, 7, 8, 9, 10 o'clock rock you're busted!"

Bizarre San Francisco Airport incident: Los Angeles county lawyer allegedly kicked cops, sang , asked for drugs

Erin Ivie
Thursday, March 21, 2014

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO - A Los Angeles County public defender was arrested on assault and battery charges Monday after authorities said she drunkenly kicked a group of police officers during a tirade at San Francisco International Airport.

Monica Marie Jenkins, 36, pleaded not guilty to the charges Wednesday in San Mateo County Court, two days after SFO employees denied her boarding access on her flight to Los Angeles because she was too drunk to fly, District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe said.

Jenkins was released from jail after entering her plea and will return to the Bay Area for her scheduled July 14 trial. She could not be reached for comment. Her office in El Monte indicated Jenkins would be back at work on Monday.
Monica Marie. (Courtesy San Mateo County Sheriff)

When she was denied board access, Jenkins reportedly became belligerent and refused suggestions to sober up and catch a later flight, and instead demanded to be taken to jail while threatening to sue arriving officers, according to Wagstaffe.

Police arrested her for being drunk in public after she broke out into song, screaming "1, 2, 3, 4, 5 o'clock rock," somewhat fumbling the lyrics of Bill Haley and the Comets' 1954 hit song, Wagstaffe said. While they were escorting her from the gate, she kicked an officer and tried to kick another while continuously screaming profanities, according to reports.

Her erratic behavior continued once in a patrol car, where she told officers "Thank you for saving me" while frantically asking about her missing purse because "it's worth a lot of money," Wagstaffe said. She then calmed down and told police "I'm not worried anymore; give me some cocaine."

When that didn't go well, she went back to being angry and again threatened to fight and sue the officers, Wagstaffe said. Upon arriving at the jail, she tried to bite a nurse who was attending to her booking.

Contact Erin Ivie at Follow her at

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

CyberSmokeBlog to Marc Nadon: "Give the $145,000 to Rocco Galati ..... now!"

The $145,000 of your hard earned taxpayer dollars the Harper government gave to Marc Nadon to sit on his ass and do nothing!

Good Day Readers:

Winnipeger Rosemary Barton who sometimes hosts and is a frequent guest on the CBC Television's daily public affairs program, Power & Politics did a piece yesterday (Tuesday) about how the failed Marc Nadon appointment cost taxpayers approximately $250,000 but it just gets better.

Ms Barton noted Mr. Nadon was paid about $145,000 worth of salary while he awaited the outcome of the court challenge but was unable to speculate what would happen with this money. Well, does CyberSmokeBlog have a suggestion for you. Why not give it to Rocco Galati's Constitutional Rights Centre to help fund other Canadians who'd like to challenge the Harper government on constitutional-charter related issues but lack the financial means. Should it refuse, Mr Galati ought to sue Stephen Harper and/or Marc Nadon. Now wouldn't that be interesting.

Here's another interesting case for the CRC. Manitoba Associate Queen's Bench Justice (Family Division) Lori Douglas has also been sitting on her ass (CyberSmokeBlog saw her internet "modelling debut pictures" .....!) for at least a couple years while the unmitigated disaster that is the Douglas Inquiry tries to get its .... together. During that time what has she done lately to give taxpayers any value for their money? By way of financial comparison she makes Marc Nadon look like a piker.

Recall how federal Treasury Board President Tony Clement recently promised to push for legislation that would not allow suspended Senators Brazeau, Duffy and Wallin to accumulate pensionable time while they too sit on their collective asses so why should Ms Douglas? Besides, with her legal expenses being paid by you coupled with the glacial pace of the Inquiry all she and her legal team need do is drag out the process for approximately another five years when she'll qualify for a full pension and the Canadian Judicial Council will be rid of its colossal disaster. What a perfect solution save for taxpayers!

This is why you should contribute whatever you can to the Constitutional Rights Centre.

Clare L. Pieuk
Cost of Marc Nadon appointment process? $250,000

Newly released document's show cost of voided process to select Marc Nadon to Supreme Court

By Chris Hall
Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Justice Marc Nadon, of the Federal Court of Appeal, is shepherded into parliamentary hearings on his nomination to the Supreme Court of Canada, by Justice Minister Peter MacKay. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

The federal government spent nearly $250,000 to review the aborted nomination of Marc Nadon to fill a Quebec vacancy on the Supreme Court of Canada - an appointment the court struck down last week.

Documents tabled in the Commons set out the costs of choosing and nominating Nadon.

The total includes $80,894 for legal services and another $152,294 for translation and other professional services.

Still, the costs associated with Nadon’s appointment are considerably less than what was spent to review Justice Richard Wagner just a year earlier.

The documents put the total cost of his successful appointment at nearly $345,000, including $66,950 for legal services.

In contrast, the joint review of Justices Michael Moldaver and Andromache Karakatsanis cost about $314,000 in 2011.

There is no immediate explanation for the cost discrepancies, said Liberal MP Irwin Colter, the source of the request for information that produced the documents.

“For example, there’s a discrepancy in the amount of legal services that were outlaid for Justice Nadon that was different than others, so we want to know why there was a [higher] cost for legal services," Cotler said.

Harper: will respect decision

There is no immediate explanation for the cost discrepancy.

To appoint a Supreme Court justice, a committee of MPs looks at a long list of candidates prepared by the federal justice minister. The committee decides on a short list of three names, which is provided to the prime minister.

Nadon’s appointment was rejected by the Supreme Court of Canada on Friday, which ruled 6-1 that he was not qualified to fill one of the court’s three seats from Quebec.

Legal observers say it was a stunning rebuke for the government, which tapped the semi-retired and relatively low-profile Nadon from the Federal Court of Appeal.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said his government will respect the letter and spirit of the Supreme Court’s ruling that Nadon failed to meet the requirement that Quebec judges be either members of a Quebec superior court or a current member of the province’s bar association.

Harper responded for the first time to Friday’s ruling, insisting his government was very surprised by the 6-1 ruling because “we had commissioned expert opinion on it which was completely contrary to the decision.’’

That review was done by retired Supreme Court justice Ian Binnie who said there was no obstacle to appointing Nadon. His opinion was supported by another former justice, Louise Charron.

Nadon: ends uncertainty

“But look, that said, that’s the decision,’’ Harper told reporters in the Netherlands, where he was attending an international nuclear safety summit.

“We haven't taken a decision on who the candidate will be. We haven't even taken a decision on taking a decision on the process.”

That would appear to close the door to suggestions that Nadon could be put forward again if he resigned from the Federal Court of Appeal and returned to a law practice in Quebec. But it leaves open the possibility that the government won’t follow the advice of some law experts that Harper choose one of the other candidates short-listed last fall with Nadon.

Either way, Irwin Cotler urged the government to move quickly to "get a first-rate candidate for appointment to the Supreme Court."

In an interview with Global News on Tuesday, Nadon said he hasn't applied to the Quebec bar. He says Friday's decision ends the uncertainty he's been living with since October.

“It’s not a shock, but I mean it’s been going on for six months, so I’m a bit like a diver who’s been under water for too long. So I need to take some fresh air a bit, and breathe,” he told Global News.

CyberSmokeBlog: "Dummy, have Marc Nadon join the Quebec Bar for a day then reappoint him!"

"Helecopter Pete" needs to shut his face he ....ed up royally and got "benchwhacked majorly!"

Conservatives defend Justice Marc Nadon

Justice Minister Peter MacKay says Ottawa is proceeding with "a process to name a new member" of the top court. Meanwhile documents reveal the government waieted a month to consult Quebec legal authorities on filling vacant seat.

By Tonda MacCharles
Ottawa Bureau Repoerter
Monday, March 24, 2014
Justice Minister Peter MacKay took aim Monday at the timing of the Supreme Court decision on appointee Marc Nadon. "It wasn't this government that decided to table this decision in the middle of a Quebec election," he said. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)

OTTAWA—New information reveals the Conservative government waited a month after Morris Fish announced his retirement from the Supreme Court of Canada before it consulted the Quebec attorney general, chief justice and head of the bar association for names to replace him.

The government responded in writing in October to questions submitted by Liberal MP Stéphane Dion, saying it consulted Quebec’s senior legal and judicial figures in late May 2013. Fish announced his retirement on April 22, effective at the end of August last year. The government stated that the Quebec attorney general was consulted on May 27, and the head of the Quebec bar on May 29, while the chief justice of Quebec was consulted on “several occasions in May and June.”

The government said it identified eligible candidates “on the basis of merit and regional representation” and a “number of other factors, including gender.”

More at

“All appointments to the Supreme Court of Canada are made, first and foremost, on the basis of merit and regional representation,” it said.

The government added that the “review and improvement of the appointment process is an ongoing exercise. No specific steps are being contemplated at this time.”

That’s relevant because a process that ended in the appointment of an ineligible judge is now being slammed by the NDP and Liberals as not providing the needed transparency.

Liberal MP Irwin Cotler, who received separate answers to other questions about the Nadon appointment, said in an interview Thursday it is time to “revisit” the process.

But the Conservative government is still stinging from the Supreme Court of Canada’s rejection of its decision in October to name Federal Court of Appeal Justice Marc Nadon to the top bench.

On Monday, it defended Nadon and took a swipe at the high court for the timing of its decision.

Justice Minister Peter MacKay dismissed as “nonsense” the criticism by Liberal MP Stéphane Dion that the government had left Quebec under-represented at the Supreme Court and antagonized the province in trying to make “unilateral” changes to its composition.

MacKay then took direct aim at the judges’ timing: “It wasn’t this government that decided to table this decision in the middle of the Quebec election,” MacKay replied.

MacKay said, as the Prime Minister’s Office did Friday, that the government was “genuinely surprised” by the ruling and repeated that it is reviewing its “options.”

Almost as an afterthought, near the end of question period, MacKay offered in French that “it is our intention to proceed with a process to name a new member of the Supreme Court … and we have a lot of people qualified for this position.”

But MacKay did not clarify that answer in English when he left the Commons.

Inside the House, when asked directly to rule out any attempt to reappoint Nadon or to “circumvent” the Supreme Court ruling in some way, MacKay pointedly did not answer. Instead he launched into an ardent defence of Nadon, saying “all parties” agree he is a respected jurist.

University of Ottawa law professor Carissima Mathen said it is surprising that Prime Minister Stephen Harper has not been clear, or that he has not instructed his justice minister to declare that “‘We thank the court for its opinion. This has clarified the issue and we’re going to move as fast as possible to fill this seat in a manner that is authorized by law.’

“It absolutely baffles me that that hasn’t happened yet,” said Mathen.

She added that taking potshots at the court over the timing of its ruling is “totally out of bounds.”

“The government asked the court a question in a matter of some urgency. The court rendered its decision. It would actually be improper for the court to take account of the surrounding politics and time its decision. The court should issue its decision when it’s ready … the court has been thrust into this situation by the government’s choices,” said Mathen.

Oy veh Judge Joe!

Reverse sexual harassment!


You can now relax. According to the following court decision you will no longer have to live in constant fear from your female superior's demand for "forced motorboating" or offers of free "duck tacos" or demands for "cannooki-ing."
"Little darling, having a bad day are we? Want a little motorboating under my shirt? Or what about a duck taco or perhaps some cannooki-ing ..... eh?"

Read on.

Clare L. Pieuk
Jury: Female boss sexually harassed Deputy

Harvey Rice
Saturday, March 22, 2014

GALVESTON – A Galveston County jury has awarded $567,000 to a former deputy constable who was allegedly sexually harassed by his female boss.

The jury made the award Friday to James P. Gist, 51, after deciding that former Precinct 7 Constable Pam Matranga, 55, sexually harassed him from May 2011 until October 2011.

Gist accused Matranga of repeatedly making suggestive comments, of pressing his head between her breasts and of making other sexual advances. He alleged that he was fired after Matranga discovered that he was attempting to record her advances.

Gist could not be reached for comment, but his attorney, Anthony Griffin, said the jury refused to absolve Matranga because of her gender.

"They rejected this whole notion that you get away with it because you are a female," Griffin said. He said the jury awarded his client $200,000 more than he asked.

Condemns the verdict

Matranga called the verdict unfair and said that her former employee filed the lawsuit because she had refused to promote him.

"It was a circus for the last two years," she said about the lawsuit, filed days before the 2012 election in which she was defeated after eight years as constable.

"It was a horrible, horrible time," Matranga said. "Mr. Gist said he would make my life a living hell, and that's what he did."

Nevertheless, she is holding no grudges. "It's over, we closed the door," Matranga said.

During testimony rife with sexual content, Matranga admitted that she joked with Gist about his attending "chunky chick night" at a strip club where Matranga would have a chance to perform. She said she did not recall mimicking a topless dancer performing a lap dance at his office chair.

'Under the shirt'

Matranga denied pulling her blouse over Gist's head, but said she did it to other deputies. "If anybody was in a bad mood, like if Phil was in a bad mood, I would say, 'Phil,' or to anyone, 'Do you need to go under the shirt?" she testified in a deposition.

She said in the deposition that she did not "shirt" Gist because he found the behavior "creepy."

Two former employees also testified that Matranga often put other employees "under the shirt," incessantly used profanity and constantly made references to her body parts. Matranga was dropped from the lawsuit, leaving only the county responsible for the damages.

The attorney representing the county, Barry Willey, could not be reached. Griffin said the county argued that it bore no responsibility because Gist never complained to the Human Resources office. District Judge John Ellisor accepted Griffin's argument that Gist complained to his supervisor, Matranga.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Rob Ford tries to grab dominatrix's ass gets his whipped!

Good Day Readers:

Just when you thought the Toronto mayoral race couldn't get more bizarre it just did, besides what would a day be without more Rob Ford news. Good luck to "Ms B" and hope she whips his fat arse into submission..

Clare L. Pieuk

Has Rob Ford finally met his Match? Mother-of-two dominatrix to run for mayor of Toronto and pledges to 'whip city into shape'

Damien Gayle
Thursday, March 20, 2014

Toronto's gregarious mayor Rob Ford may yet regret being such a anaughty boy.

One of the city's top fetish queens is planning on whipping its administration into shape by challenging Ford for the mayorlty.

Carli Ritch known to her clients as Miss Barbie B.... is a professional dominatrix and believes she can run Canada's most populas city better than the controversial incumbent.
Ms Ritch, a mother of two grown up children and grandmother of one, runs a busy Toronto dungeon and her plans to open a chain of dominatrix schools are being looked at by the angel investors of Dragons's Den.

The 43-year-old says the confidence she has gained as a dominatrix has made her the perfect candidate to challenge Ford's 'arrogance and abuse of power.'

Ms Ritch, a mother of two grown up children and grandmother of one, runs a busy Toronto dungeon and her plans to open a chain of dominatrix schools are being looked at by the angel investors of Dragon's Den.

She even claims to have clients at City Hall, although refused to name them.

With campaign slogans including 'I'll whip this city into shape' and 'I mean business', Ms Ritch says she is 'a warrior' who will 'change things at City Hall.'

'If I get elected I'd clean house, councillors who've been there 30 years have got to go. Any bureaucrats not doing their job will be re-assigned or moved out,' she told the Toronto Sun.

And in case Toronto's citizens were worried that they might end up with another mayor hitting the front pages for all the wrong reasons, she insisted: 'I don’t have any skeletons in my closet.

'I AM the skeleton.'
'I AM the skeleton: The successful businesswoman even claims to have City Hall officials among her clients.
Mayor Ford laughs in front of a 'Keep Calm and Carry On' yesterday after being elected on a Right-wing ticket in 2010, he has been under pressure to resign since admitting smoking crack last year.

Ms Ritch doesn't think her career as a dominatrix should put people off her, claiming she is as normal as anyone else.

I'm a single mum and I've worked for everything I have. I'm really that blue-collar, normal, ordinary person,' she said.

Indeed, after the scandal-ridden tenture of crack-smoking incumbent Mayor Ford, even the candidacy of such a flamboyant character as Mizz Barbie Bitch might seem to Toronto's voters like a return to relative political normality.

The mayor has become notorious for his associations with alleged drug dealers, drunken outbursts and unpredictable behaviour - but has consistently dismissed calls for his resignation.
Controversial Mayor Ford wades through a media scrum outside City Hall.

Just yesterday Mayor ford fled journalists after Toronto's police released a detailed description of a video which shows him smoking the highly addictive cocaine derivative.

That embarrassment came just two days after the party-loving politician was filmed apparently drunk and swearing at passing cars during Toronto's St Patrick's Day celebrations.

In January he was filmed in a Toronto restaurant ranting obscenities in Jamaican patois.

After being elected on a Right-wing ticket in 2010, Mayor Ford has been under great pressure to resign since he admitted smoking crack last year.

Toronto's City Council stripped him of many of his powers but does not have the authority to remove him. 
Undaunted, he has vowed to run for re-election this autumn.

"Let us pray ....."

"Hello, God? ..... CyberSmokeBlog is doing very well thank you for asking. Could you please send Conservative Senator Don Meredith a Wright-Duffy style untraceable cheque for $1,294 to cover his expenses at last months National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C. after all he was representing you."
Senate administration examining Conservative Senator Meredith's expenses

The Senate is conducting a detailed review of Tory Senator Don Meredith's Expenses: Source

By Abbas Rana
Monday, March 24, 2014
Conservative Senator Don Meredith's Senate expenses are being reviewed by the Senate administration due to a trip he took to Washington, D.C. to the National Prayer Breakfast. Senator Meredith said in an email to The Hill Times, 'As a public servant, I am proud of the work I do to support our government's domestic and international goals.' Government Senate Leader Claude Carignan declined to comment. (The Hill Times photographs by Jake Wright)

The Senate administration is conducting a detailed review of all of expense claims filed by Ontario Conservative Senator Don Meredith. The Senate is looking at all his expenses since Prime Minister Stephen Harper appointed him to the Upper Chamber in December 2010, sources told The Hill Times.

“They’re reviewing each and every expense claim that he filed,” a Senate source told The Hill Times.

In interviews last week, sources said the Senate administration decided to look into it because some specific expense-related complaints were recently brought to the Senate’s attention. Sources said, with the ongoing Senate audit by Auditor General Michael Ferguson of all Senators’ expenses, it was important to use due diligence before the AG’s office finds any inappropriate approvals and makes those public.

“It’s very important that the Senate administration take the time to really take a look at it again because if there’s a fault within their own internal system, it will only be good for them to figure it out on their own and fix it before the AG exposes them,” the source said.

Another trigger for this review was Senator Meredith’s five-day trip last month to Washington D.C. for the National Prayer Breakfast which Senate Conservative Whip Senator Elizabeth Marshall (Newfoundland and Labrador) declined to approve twice. The Senate finance department also told his office ahead of time that his expenses would not be approved because the trip was not considered Senate business.

The Senate finance department subsequently advised the Senator’s office that it would not approve the expenses of the trip until the Senate Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration Committee approved it.

The committee ended up not offering any opinion because Senator Marshall had already disapproved it and the expectation was that he would not take this trip. Nevertheless, he did.

The prayer breakfast was on Thursday, February 6, but Senator Meredith stayed in Washington for five days, from February 3-February 7.

Senator Meredith used his Senate travel points to buy business class air tickets for himself and his wife.

Following the completion of this trip, he filed a claim of $1,294 for hotel stay, meals and taxi fares.

In addition to attending the prayer breakfast, Senator Meredith met and dined with some ambassadors from African countries and met with Michigan Congressman Bill Huizenga.

In September, Senator Meredith attended the annual International Prayer Breakfast in New York City organized by the UN diplomats and his expenses were not approved by the Senate administration. He filed an appeal with the Senate Internal Economy Committee twice, but the appeals were rejected both times.

Senator Meredith is now said to be in the process of paying back those expenses.

Because of frequent disapproval of ineligible expenses, sources told The Hill Times that the Senate administration sent Senator Meredith a letter in the past advising him to be careful with the way he uses his Senate-issued American Express credit card and to use it only when he’s confident that those expenses are going to be accepted by the Senate finance department.

Sources told The Hill Times that the Conservative Senate leadership is also concerned about Senator Meredith’s tendency to be late for regular Senate sittings and committee meetings.

The Senate administration keeps track of Senators’ regular attendance in the Upper Chamber, but the attendance records do not indicate lateness or how long a Senator actually stayed in the Chamber or in Senate committees.

However, the Conservative Senate Whip’s Office does keep those records.

Two weeks ago, Senator Meredith was dropped from the Senate Human Rights Committee because of his expenses issues and his tendency to be late for Senate sittings and committee meetings.

It’s also expected that he could be dropped from the Senate Aboriginal Peoples Committee in the coming weeks for the same reasons.

Government Senate leader Claude Carignan (Mille Isles, Quebec), through his spokesman Sebastien Gariepy, declined to comment.

“We don’t have any comment on this,” Mr. Gariepy said in a phone call to The Hill Times.

According to the most recent quarterly Senate expense report available on the Senate website, between September and November, Senator Meredith spent $11,256 on travel.

Senator Meredith lives in Toronto and although the flight to Ottawa is less than an hour long, he prefers to travel in business class on a regular basis and whenever his wife comes to Ottawa, she also travels in business class.

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The Senate travel policy does allow Senators to travel in business class, but the policy advises Senators to use their judgment in making these decisions.

The Hill Times contacted Senator Meredith’s office for comment on the Senate’s review of his expenses and other issues outlined in this article. Senator Meredith, an ordained evangelical minister, emailed a statement to The Hill Times.

“Being a pastor and long-time activist around engaging, encouraging and empowerment of our at-risk youth was also an important part of why I was asked to serve. Day after day, I am driven to do my best to respond to the demands of my various constituencies,” wrote Senator Meredith.

“That is what Canadians expect of me. And sometimes that includes finding efficient ways to reconcile my spiritual vocation as part of my public duties. As a public servant, I am proud of the work I do in support of our government’s domestic and international goals. And I am happy to continue supporting the government’s initiatives.”

The Hill Times also contacted Senate communications to confirm if the administration is conducting a review of Senator Meredith’s expenses. In a written response, Senate Communications said:

“In June, the Senate invited the auditor general to examine Senators’ expenses, and the audit is well underway. Meanwhile, as a part of standard operating procedures, outlined in detail below, the Senate administration regularly examines and monitors Senators’ expense claims and travel patterns,” said the statement.

“According to the Senators’ travel policy, the monitoring and reporting is as follows - 2.19.1: claims verification [and] all travel expense claims shall be verified by the finance division prior to any reimbursement being processed. Finance verification shall include confirmation that all expenses claimed are in compliance with this policy and that mandatory documentation has been submitted.

“ should unusual travel activity or patterns emerge, these travel claims shall be brought to the attention of the [Senate] Steering Committee for consideration and further verification if necessary. In such instances, finance staff may be directed by the committee to request from the Senator documentation that substantiates the Parliamentary nature of the travel for a more comprehensive review.”

The National Prayer Breakfast is an annual non-partisan event organized by the Congressional leadership in Washington D.C. This event is attended by more than 3,000 people from around the world including the President of the United States, the Vice President, Members of the President’s Cabinet, Congressmen, Senators, diplomats, heads of states and other politicians from around the world and well-known people from all walks of life.

In addition to Senator Meredith, Conservative MP Steven Fletcher (Charleswood-St. James-Assiniboia, Manitoba), Conservative MP Harold Albrecht (Kitchener-Conestoga, Ontario), and Green Party leader Elizabeth May (Saanich-Gulf Islands, British Columbia) also attended the Washington, D.C., prayer breakfast.

Both Tory MPs’ trip to Washington D.C. was approved by the Chief Government Whip.

All three MPs and Senatpr Meredith are members of the all-party informal Parliamentary Prayer Breakfast Group which meets every Wednesday when Parliament is in session from 7 a.m.-8 a.m. at the Parliamentary Restaurant. In total, the group has about 25 MPs and Senators.

In an interview, Mr. Fletcher told The Hill Times that the House paid for the airfare, his hotel stay and other per diems. He did not disclose the amount of his claim but said all of his expenses were filed according to Treasury Board guidelines and said that the House finance department did not raise any issue with it.

On top of attending the National Prayer Breakfast, which Mr. Fletcher said was a great networking opportunity, he met with ambassadors from six countries who are posted in Washington but have responsibilities for Canada as well and some Congressmen and Senators. In his meetings with diplomats, he said he discussed issues related to trade between Canada and their countries.

“It was a good opportunity to increase mutual understanding of our respective countries. We talked about trade and Canadian investment and [discussions about] some countries [that] may have issues with democracy or human rights,” said Mr. Fletcher, who declined to offer any details about those discussions.

He said he was in Washington for four days.

Mr. Albrecht said that he was in Washington for three days and filed expense claims for airfare, hotel stay and other related expenses. In addition to his airfare, he filed an expense claim of $1,109 which included his hotel stay and per diems.

Mr. Albrecht said he also met with ambassadors from six different countries and hoped that his meetings would develop and strengthen relationships between Canada and those respective countries.

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“The meetings with the ambassadors, it’s an important part of building relationships. These ambassadors, some of them haven’t been to Canada to [present] their credentials so I think those relationships would open the door for when they do come to Canada. Hopefully, we’ll be able to build on that relationship between theirs and our countries. Beyond that, it’s important for people of faith to have forums where they can share their journey with each other. It’s important for people of faith to incorporate their faith into their daily life,” said Mr. Albrecht.

Ms. May told The Hill Times that she stayed with a friend while she was Washington and that in addition to her airfare, she filed a claim of about $180 for per diems in total.

She also said she would encourage every MP and Senator to attend the National Prayer Breakfast at least once because of the unique opportunity it offers to meet with politicians from the United States, but also from around the world which could prove to be helpful in developing and building relationships between Canada and other countries.

Ms. May also gave a speech at an event organized by the Congressional Spousal Group, which was part of the National Prayer breakfast.

Ms. May said she spoke on the importance of non-partisanship in the context of prayer breakfasts and how that affects people’s live in a very partisan world.

During the trip, Ms. May said she met with a number of Congressmen, Senators, Congressional staffers and some environmental groups. She said she conveyed her party’s position and the Canadian perspective on issues related to the environment.

“My participation highlighted, in a very crowded political landscape in Washington, that I’m the Leader of the Green Party of Canada, that I’m non-partisan in my outlook, that Canada is a country with more than one view on key issues, but approaches them respectfully,” Ms. May said.

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