LA REVUE GAUCHE - Left Analysis And Comment: THE STRANGE CASE OF THE MISSING TERRORIST SCIENTISTS IN THE NEWS

In April of this year the RCMP announced that they had uncovered a bio-terrorist threat involving two Canadian scientists working for the innocuous sounding: Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). The agency itself had been in the news lately due to regulatory failures leading to a number of food poising cases from bacterial outbreaks in a packing plant in Alberta. ...

Cowichan Conversations: Scandalous Government Coverup of ISA Virus In Salmon

Here is another shocking post from marine biologist Alexandra Morton Alexandra Morton-Marine Biologist The World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), our global first line of defence against farm animal epidemics, just stacked the odds against stopping ISA virus from spreading in British Columbia. They stripped the lab I am using to track ISA virus of ...

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading. – Chrystia Freeland writes about the dangers of increased concentration of wealth – particularly when it bears at best a passing relationship to any worthwhile contribution to society at large. And CBC’s report on Peter Sabourin’s investment fraud highlights the fact that the tax havens which have allowed for ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Jason Fekete reports that the Harper Cons are taking the side of international tax evaders against other G8 leaders trying to implement an effective enforcement system. And CBC reports that the Canada Revenue Agency has repeatedly turned down the opportunity to access information about tax cheats based on ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Frances Russell weighs in on the Cons’ continued contempt for democracy: The Conservatives under Stephen Harper are running an effective dictatorship. They believe they are quite within their rights to muzzle Parliament, gag civil servants, use taxpayer money for blatant political self-promotion, stand accused of trying to subvert ...

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how the CFIA’s inability to do anything about tainted horse meat exemplifies the problems with weak and under-resourced regulators. For further reading…– Again, Mary Ormsby’s original story is here. – Andrew Nikiforuk’s take on the appointment of oil lobbyist Gerald Protti to set up Alberta’s new regulatory system is here. – And for ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Shut them down

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency won’t give the XL Foods plant in Brooks, Alberta — the plant at the centre of the largest beef recall in Canadian history due to E. coli contamination — a firm date on the reinstatement of the company’s license to operate. The agency insists that it must first complete its ...

somecanuckchick dot com: When is an Agriculture minister ^NOT an Agriculture minister?

Silence is golden. A proverbial saying… With respect to the Harper government, specifically the Agriculture minister and the XL Foods recall, saying nothing is preferable to speaking. For those of you keeping track… It has been 1 week and 1 day since Gerry Ritz, the Minister of Agriculture, updated Canadians on anything pertaining to the ...

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading. – No, the aftershocks of an e. coli outbreak which has unfortunately given both Canadians and export markets reason for concern about the safety of some of our major food sources aren’t about to end simply because the Cons are again pretending everything’s fine. And the president of the ...

Cowichan Conversations: Harper Conservative’s Were To Ensure Meat Safety After 2008 Maple Leaf Meats Deadly Listeriosis Outbreak!

Richard ‘Hub’ Hughes – Political Blogger The recent E.coli outbreak at the Brooks Alberta XL Meat Plant happened due to cutting back on CFIA Inspectors and relaxing regulations to allow increased efficiencies and corporate profits. Hold it! Tell me this, what safeguards were put into place during the last deadly lapse in safety procedures in ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Mostly competent government: Gerry Ritz edition

It occurs to me that I haven’t actually written anything in support of calls for the resignation of Gerry Ritz. Of course he should resign. Four years ago, 22 people died in an outbreak of listeriosis caused by a failure in the food inspection system at Maple Leaf Foods in Toronto. At the time there ...

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading. – Murray Mandryk and Bruce Johnstone both thoroughly slam Gerry Ritz and the Cons for their food-safety negligence. But Johnstone hints at the larger issue: Ritz, for all his faults, is not the cause of this latest debacle. He’s merely a symptom of a bigger problem with the ...

Cowichan Conversations: Deregulation And Greed Likely Responsible For Tainted Meat Threat

Richard ‘Hub’ Hughes – Political Blogger The Brooks Alberta’s XL’s Meat Processor’s handling of meat processing is likely the product of corporate greed and a compromised Canadian Food Inspection Agency. The diminished CFIA is responsible for protecting the health of consumers. In  XL’s case they have flip-flopped around while the health of Canadians and Americans ...

Five of Five: The Eat More Alberta Beef Campaign

Alberta’s Agriculture Minister Verlyn Olson makes a pouty face while stocking up on Alberta Beef in a Camrose store. Good thing there was a Sun Media photographer right there to capture the moment for the front page. What serendipity! You can’t pay for that kind of luck. http://www.camrosecanadian.com/2012/09/29/ag-minister-olson-still-buying-beef

Five of Five: The Eat More Alberta Beef Campaign

Alberta’s Agriculture Minister Verlyn Olson makes a pouty face while stocking up on Alberta Beef in a Camrose store. Good thing there was a Sun Media photographer right there to capture the moment for the front page. What serendipity! You can’t pay for that kind of luck. http://www.camrosecanadian.com/2012/09/29/ag-minister-olson-still-buying-beef

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Today in Contaminated Beef: The recall is still growing

Meat recall expanded to 1,500 products over E. coli threat The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said Tuesday has now recalled more than 1,500 beef products in Canada from the XL Foods meat processing plant in Brooks, Alta. The expanded recall list now includes cuts of steaks and roasts, stewing beef and beef breakfast sausage, and ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: On E. coli and false economy

It’s the largest recall of beef in Canadian history and it continues to grow. Fortunately there have been no reports of additional illness connected to beef from XL Foods but the economic effects are rippling outward. Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz is insisting that “food safety hasn’t been compromised” but at what cost? It isn’t just ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: The system clearly didn’t work properly

When I posted yesterday about XL Foods and contaminated beef, I had to make a quick correction because I realized I had counted the same four people twice. But now there really are eight people who are sick from E. coli. Eight people are sick and several products have been recalled after an E. coli ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Today in Contaminated Beef

Costco steaks linked to four Edmonton E. coli poisonings The Canadian Food Inspection Agency issued a health alert over some beef steaks sold at the Costco store in northeast Edmonton after four people got sick from eating the meat. … Alberta Health Services linked the strip loin grilling steaks with four cases of E. coli ...

Peace, order and good government, eh?: Lesson not learned

Over the last few days, in the course of curating the news for the onpoli.ca project, I had noticed a series of stories about beef products being recalled due to possible E.coli contamination. With each successive story (e.g. this from Sunday) it seemed the recall had widened and the number of products involved had increased. ...

Accidental Deliberations: Parliament in Review – May 7, 2012

Monday, May 7 saw another day largely dominated by debate on the Cons’ omnibus budget bill. The Big Issue Plenty of MPs rightly focused on the Cons’ move to combine so many disparate types of legislation into a single behemoth of a bill. Don Davies remembered his first instruction as an MP and wondered just ...

Accidental Deliberations: Parliament in Review: April 30, 2012

Monday, April 30 featured discussion of two opposition motions dealing with the federal government’s responsibility to ensure the safety of Canadians. And on both fronts, the Cons went out of their way to disclaim any such role for our public servants. The Big Issue Jack Harris started off the safety theme with a motion to ...

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, following up on Sarah Schmidt’s report showing that an outright majority of tested food products are inaccurately labeled by noting that nutrition information is just one of many areas where we’re being told to take the corporate sector’s word as to what’s good for us. For further reading:– Joanna Smith reports on the gap ...

Accidental Deliberations: Monday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material to start your week. – Yes, the individual examples are worrisome enough. But the real takeaway from Sarah Schmidt’s report on the CFIA’s testing of food products for sale in Canada is that more often than not, consumers can’t trust what’s on the label: CFIA allows for a variance of up 20 percentage ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Yes, there was huge news in Robocon yesterday, with Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand rightly declaring the Cons’ fraudulent vote suppression to be “absolutely outrageous” while sharing the news that reports of wrongdoing have now come in from two-thirds of all of Canada’s federal ridings. And Mayrand also ...