Mandate letter in a Liberal government

The previous government and this one have instituted the mandate letter. It is a series of instructions both general and specific to a minister of the Crown, telling him or her what is expected. I am copying one that came to my attention. If you read it all, as I suggest you do, you will be able to capture the flavour of the innards of Trudeau the Second’s regime. Notice, if you please, how much is attitudinal fluff, how much is pious hope, how much is political correctness, and how much pertains to the actual work of a Minister of Industry. (Bains has been pretty good on a number of files that interest me)

Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry Mandate Letter

Office of the Prime Minister

Dear Mr. Bains:

Thank you for agreeing to serve Canadians as Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry.

On Election Day, Canadians chose to continue moving forward. From coast to coast to coast, people chose to invest in their families and communities, create good middle class jobs and fight climate change while keeping our economy strong and growing. Canadians sent the message that they want us to work together to make progress on the issues that matter most, from making their lives more affordable and strengthening the healthcare system, to protecting the environment, keeping our communities safe and moving forward on reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples. People expect Parliamentarians to work together to deliver these results, and that’s exactly what this team will do.

It is more important than ever for Canadians to unite and build a stronger, more inclusive and more resilient country. The Government of Canada is the central institution to promote that unity of purpose and, as a Minister in that Government, you have a personal duty and responsibility to fulfill that objective.

That starts with a commitment to govern in a positive, open and collaborative way. Our platform, Forward: A Real Plan for the Middle Class, is the starting point for our Government. I expect us to work with Parliament to deliver on our commitments. Other issues and ideas will arise or will come from Canadians, Parliament, stakeholders and the public service. It is my expectation that you will engage constructively and thoughtfully and add priorities to the Government’s agenda when appropriate. Where legislation is required, you will need to work with the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons and the Cabinet Committee on Operations to prioritize within the minority Parliament.

We will continue to deliver real results and effective government to Canadians. This includes: tracking and publicly reporting on the progress of our commitments; assessing the effectiveness of our work; aligning our resources with priorities; and adapting to events as they unfold, in order to get the results Canadians rightly demand of us.

Many of our most important commitments require partnership with provincial, territorial and municipal governments and Indigenous partners, communities and governments. Even where disagreements may occur, we will remember that our mandate comes from citizens who are served by all orders of government and it is in everyone’s interest that we work together to find common ground. The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs is the Government-wide lead on all relations with the provinces and territories.

There remains no more important relationship to me and to Canada than the one with Indigenous Peoples. We made significant progress in our last mandate on supporting self-determination, improving service delivery and advancing reconciliation. I am directing every single Minister to determine what they can do in their specific portfolio to accelerate and build on the progress we have made with First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples.

I also expect us to continue to raise the bar on openness, effectiveness and transparency in government. This means a government that is open by default. It means better digital capacity and services for Canadians. It means a strong and resilient public service. It also means humility and continuing to acknowledge mistakes when we make them. Canadians do not expect us to be perfect; they expect us to be diligent, honest, open and sincere in our efforts to serve the public interest.

As Minister, you are accountable for your style of leadership and your ability to work constructively in Parliament. I expect that you will collaborate closely with your Cabinet and Caucus colleagues. You will also meaningfully engage with the Government Caucus and Opposition Members of Parliament, the increasingly non-partisan Senate, and Parliamentary Committees.

It is also your responsibility to substantively engage with Canadians, civil society and stakeholders, including businesses of all sizes, organized labour, the broader public sector and the not-for-profit and charitable sectors. You must be proactive in ensuring that a broad array of voices provides you with advice, in both official languages, from every region of the country.

We are committed to evidence-based decision-making that takes into consideration the impacts of policies on all Canadians and fully defends the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. You will apply Gender-based Analysis Plus (GBA+) in the decisions that you make.

Canada’s media and your engagement with them in a professional and timely manner are essential. The Parliamentary Press Gallery, indeed all journalists in Canada and abroad, ask necessary questions and contribute in an important way to the democratic process.

You will do your part to continue our Government’s commitment to transparent, merit-based appointments, to help ensure that people of all gender identities, Indigenous Peoples, racialized people, persons with disabilities and minority groups are reflected in positions of leadership.

As Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, you will continue to help Canadian businesses innovate and grow so that they can create good quality jobs and wealth for Canadians. The new Innovation Superclusters Initiative is an anchor of this work. You will also take steps to support consumer choice and competition to make life more affordable for middle class families. The full responsibilities for science are in your portfolio, including the relationship with the post-secondary research community and the integration of scientific considerations in the Government’s decision-making processes, as well as the transformation of science into commercially successful innovation, new economic opportunities and the industries of tomorrow.

I will expect you to work with your colleagues and through established legislative, regulatory and Cabinet processes to deliver on your top priorities. In particular, you will:

  • Continue to support innovation ecosystems across the country, particularly those based on partnerships between businesses and post-secondary institutions, to support job creation, technology adoption, investment and scale-up.
  • Continue to support Canada’s traditionally strong industries – including, but not limited to, automotive, aerospace and agri-food – to increase productivity and innovation, especially as we transition to a low-carbon economy. The ongoing work of the Economic Strategy Tables can guide your work in this regard.
  • Support the Chief Science Advisor to ensure that the government’s pure and applied science is fully available to the public, that scientists are able to speak freely about their work and that scientific analysis from across Canada and around the world is considered when the Government makes decisions. Ensure that Cabinet and I receive regular briefings from the Chief Science Advisor on cross-government science priorities.
  • As the Minister responsible for the National Research Council, work to continue to drive mission-oriented research to address the great challenges of our age, including climate change, clean growth and a healthy society.
  • Continue to advance Canada’s commitment to promoting gender equity, diversity and inclusion in the Sciences, and provide funding to the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council to create academic research grants for studies on race, diversity and gender in Canada.
  • Use all available instruments, including the advancement of the 2019 Telecom Policy Directive, to reduce the average cost of cellular phone bills in Canada by 25 per cent. You will work with telecom companies and expand mobile virtual network operators (MVNO) in the market. If within two years this price target is not achieved, you can expand MVNO qualifying rules and the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission mandate on affordable pricing.
  • Award spectrum access based on commitments towards consumer choice, affordability and broad access. You will also reserve space for new entrants.
  • With the support of the Minister of Middle Class Prosperity and Associate Minister of Finance and the Minister of Seniors, create a new Canadian Consumer Advocate to ensure a single point of contact for people who need help with federally regulated banking, telecom or transportation-related complaints. Ensure that complaints are reviewed and, if founded, that appropriate remedies and penalties can be imposed.
  • Work with the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development and the Minister of Canadian Heritage to deliver high-speed internet to 100 per cent of Canadian homes and businesses by 2030.
  • Co-lead work with the Minister of Canadian Heritage to modernize the Broadcasting Act and the Telecommunications Act, examining how best to support Canadian content in English and French and ensure quality affordable internet, mobile and media access.
  • Work with the Minister of Canadian Heritage to introduce legislation by the end of 2020 that will take appropriate measures to ensure that all content providers, including internet giants, offer meaningful levels of Canadian content in their catalogues, contribute to the creation of Canadian content in both Official Languages, promote this content and make it easily accessible on their platforms. The legislation should also consider additional cultural and linguistic communities.
  • Work with the Minister of Natural Resources and the Minister of Environment and Climate Change to position Canada as a global leader in clean technology.
  • In partnership with industry and communities, work with the Minister of Natural Resources to install up to 5,000 additional charging stations along the Trans Canada Highway and other major road networks and in Canada’s urban and rural areas, track toward our zero-emission vehicles targets, and expand the existing zero-emission vehicle incentive by providing a 10 per cent rebate on a used zero-emission vehicle up to a maximum value of $2,000.
  • Work with the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada and the Minister of Canadian Heritage to advance Canada’s Digital Charter and enhanced powers for the Privacy Commissioner, in order to establish a new set of online rights, including: data portability; the ability to withdraw, remove and erase basic personal data from a platform; the knowledge of how personal data is being used, including with a national advertising registry and the ability to withdraw consent for the sharing or sale of data; the ability to review and challenge the amount of personal data that a company or government has collected; proactive data security requirements; the ability to be informed when personal data is breached with appropriate compensation; and the ability to be free from online discrimination including bias and harassment.
  • With the support of the Minister of Canadian Heritage, create new regulations for large digital companies to better protect people’s personal data and encourage greater competition in the digital marketplace. A newly created Data Commissioner will oversee those regulations.
  • With the support of the Minister of Digital Government, continue work on the ethical use of data and digital tools like artificial intelligence for better government.
  • As the Minister responsible for Statistics Canada:
    • Prepare for the long-form census in 2021, including the collection and analysis of disaggregated data;
    • Support the Minister of Diversity and Inclusion and Youth by improving the quality and amount of data collection done by Statistics Canada regarding hate crimes to help create effective and evidence-based policies to counteract these crimes; and
    • Support the Minister of Middle Class Prosperity andAssociate Minister of Finance to better incorporate quality of life measurements into government decision-making and budgeting.
  • Work with the Minister of Canadian Heritage to review the Copyright Act.
  • Work with the Minister of Finance and interested provinces and territories and communities to establish a national approach to beneficial ownership so that law enforcement and the Canada Revenue Agency have the tools to crack down on financial crime in real estate while respecting Canadians’ privacy rights. With the support of the Minister of Finance, conclude consultations with the provinces and territories on the creation of a pan-Canadian public registry for beneficial ownership and prepare legislation reflecting the outcome of those consultations.
  • Work with the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Rural Economic Development to support continued gender equality and diversity in Canadian companies.
  • Support the Minister of Public Services and Procurement in bringing forward analyses and options for the creation of Defence Procurement Canada.
  • As the Minister responsible for the Competition Bureau, work with the Minister of Northern Affairs to ensure that savings from the Northern Resident Deduction for travel costs benefit citizens in the North rather than transportation providers.

These priorities draw heavily from our election platform commitments. As mentioned, you are encouraged to seek opportunities to work across Parliament in the fulfillment of these commitments and to identify additional priorities.

I expect you to work closely with your Deputy Minister and their senior officials to ensure that the ongoing work of your department is undertaken in a professional manner and that decisions are made in the public interest. Your Deputy Minister will brief you on the many daily decisions necessary to ensure the achievement of your priorities, the effective running of the government and better services for Canadians. It is my expectation that you will apply our values and principles to these decisions so that they are dealt with in a timely and responsible manner and in a way that is consistent with the overall direction of our Government.

Our ability, as a government, to implement our priorities depends on consideration of the professional, non-partisan advice of public servants. Each and every time a government employee comes to work, they do so in service to Canada, with a goal of improving our country and the lives of all Canadians. I expect you to establish a collaborative working relationship with your Deputy Minister, whose role, and the role of public servants under their direction, is to support you in the performance of your responsibilities.

We have committed to an open, honest government that is accountable to Canadians, lives up to the highest ethical standards and applies the utmost care and prudence in the handling of public funds. I expect you to embody these values in your work and observe the highest ethical standards in everything you do. I want Canadians to look on their own government with pride and trust.

As Minister, you must ensure that you are aware of and fully compliant with the Conflict of Interest Act and Treasury Board policies and guidelines. You will be provided with a copy of Open and Accountable Government to assist you as you undertake your responsibilities. I ask that you carefully read it, including elements that have been added to strengthen it, and ensure that your staff does so as well. I expect that in staffing your offices you will hire people who reflect the diversity of Canada, and that you will uphold principles of gender equality, disability equality, pay equity and inclusion.

Give particular attention to the Ethical Guidelines set out in Annex A of that document, which apply to you and your staff. As noted in the Guidelines, you must uphold the highest standards of honesty and impartiality, and both the performance of your official duties and the arrangement of your private affairs should bear the closest public scrutiny. This is an obligation that is not fully discharged by simply acting within the law.

I will note that you are responsible for ensuring that your Minister’s Office meets the highest standards of professionalism and that it is a safe, respectful, rewarding and welcoming place for your staff to work.

I know I can count on you to fulfill the important responsibilities entrusted in you. It is incumbent on you to turn to me and the Deputy Prime Minister early and often to support you in your role as Minister.

Sincerely,

Prime Minister of Canada signature

Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, P.C., M.P.
Prime Minister of Canada

Everything is proceeding as I have foreseen: BoJo and Trump

I am taking bets from hapless fools who think Trump is going to lose the next election. I wish I had known a Labourite or a Remainer from whom I could have won a $100 on the defeat of BoJo. Keep calling everyone whose views you don’t like science deniers, racists, homophobes, bigots, and this is what you will get. People who do not normally bother to vote will line up around the block – in the cold – to vote you out of office.

Populism? Just a word for the political preferences of people you have declared to be unfit to vote. Populism! This is a nonsense word. It designates a time when elite opinion is severely out of tune with what most people want out of politics.

It is important to look at what the media hold up as reality to be a form of puppet theatre. They will try to make you believe that the left is all triumphant force for good over evil; that Greta Thunberg matters; that Trudeau is a genius, and Trump a monster. They will try to tell you that there is a serious case for a Democrat to replace Trump, and that the 2020 US Presidential election is not already decided.

Speaking of Trudeau, he had a very good day yesterday. The decent but dull leader of the Opposition, Andrew Scheer, resigned, and his principal nemesis, the former Minister of Justice, Miss Indian Entitled herself, Jody Wilson Raybould, refuses to quit her ministerial offices on Parliament Hill, despite no longer being a member of cabinet or of the government. Hey! When you are entitled to your entitlements, who cares how entitled your behaviour looks to others?

Fake News and False Flags

We all know what false flag attacks are.  When coupled with the Fake News media we have a potent lie machine in the hands of the Deep State.

The alleged chemical attack on Douma in Syria, in April 2018, supposedly by the Assad government, happened just as the Syrian army was achieving victory over one of the many jihadist groups fighting in the country.

Immediately, the American Deep State and its tribe of presstitutes wound up the propaganda machine against the “animal Assad” for unleashing chemical weapons on his own population.  Why Assad would attempt to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory was never explained, or even entertained.

As we are now discovering, the whole thing was a false flag designed to provide another pretext for another attack on Syria.  The OPCW has been discredited as the leaked reports show that many relevant facts were suppressed.

Watch the excellent report on “The Corbett Report” [here] for a detailed background.  Events are still unfolding….

Rebel Yell

Olden times, circa 1960

I once amazed a class of 24 year-olds – when I was 57 – by saying that as a child I rode in the back seat for hours with two siblings, with no seat belts, with a father who drove while smoking a cigarette, window open. Somehow we survived. All those parents who were World War 2 survivors thought every day without gunfire aimed at them was a good day.

Here is a meditation on aging and modern times, from Brad Upton.

Brilliant conversation

“Americans believe in liberty, even at the expense of justice. Brits believe in justice and think that liberty is a good way to get there.” You will not hear more brilliant conversation this month than this. The late Clive James in conversation with the very much alive Stephen Fry.

Their talk focuses on the United States and Britain. I love to hear Fry say that “rationalism and superstition are two wings of the same heresy”.

A video obituary of Clive James is here. I regret never having known of him before today.

Renewable Energy Fantasies

An excellent paper by Mark Mills lays out the erroneous assumptions and unscientific thinking behind the “Green Energy” crusade.  In “An Exercise in Magical Thinking” he shows clearly how none of the claims hold up under scrutiny and the entire process is an exercise in futility.

Be warned, there’s a good deal of engineering in it and, shock and horror, some appeal to actual physics, which is what Mother Nature uses to run  the real world.

Enjoy.

Rebel Yell

How do men “manage intimacy”?

The topic today sounds gay. It is not about gayness, but its opposite. How do men get along with each other? Particularly how do friends get along? There is a moment in the latest encounter of Joe Rogan with Bret Weinstein where the truth is revealed. It comes at minute 58:00. Skip to that point.

How do men handle intimacy and closeness, asks Weinstein? Several things are said:

  1. The way men behave with each other is not the way women act among themselves (I assume this. Nothing I have heard suggests that women relate to each other as roughly as men do;
  2. We shit on each other, we give each other grief, we ruthlessly expose pride and conceit;
  3. This behaviour is very important to how men do business;
  4. “Increasingly I have this idea -says Weinstein – that I need this in my life”.

The important part of the conversation lasts a minute before it descends, as most male conversation does, from the heights of significance to ribaldry and silliness. But for that one blazing minute an important truth is told.

But I will echo Bret, that males need this kind of conversation in your life, and if you do not have it, you are living an impoverished version of what your life could be. You can join the Masons if you want to formalize your interaction with other males, but a group of friends who meet once a month or so around a table for a few beers would do as well.

I have had occasion to warn any woman seriously intent upon some man: does he have friends? If not, avoid him like the plague.

I recall a doctor of my acquaintance who was wooing a woman. He knew exactly what he was doing. He borrowed me and my set of friends to deceive her into thinking that he was embedded in a set of male friends. He invited me and my circle to dinner with his intended wife. He married her and we never say him again. The deception was complete, as far as she was concerned.

The diner party at which Bret Weinstein and his wife were so impressed with how males related was hosted by the comedian Bryan Callen. He seems well worth listening to.

To those men with circles of friends, nothing I said here is original. To those men without a circle of friends, I hope you get along with your brothers and brothers-in-law.

Bronze Age Pervert, second take

I copy this from The Deep State versus the Deep Right, in The American Mind. Curtis Yarvin (formerly Mencius Moldbug) wrote this appreciation of Bronze Age Pervert, the enfant terrible of alt. right thought. Wikipedia does not like Curtis Yarvin, and it will dislike Bronze Age Pervert even more when an article on him is proposed for it.

Yarvin writes:

“Apart perhaps from Houellebecq, Bronze Age Pervert is the first major writer in our time to understand and inhabit this reality. Of course, that doesn’t mean we need his foam in our cappuccino. Indeed, when the future looks back, Bronze Age Mindset will be seen as an early, badly edited and produced, slightly embarrassing effort—notable for when, not what. Yet the Pervert himself may be best positioned to surpass his early work.

(In fact such a book, a book of true power, should not be a crappy POD edition, available to any digital idiot, but a limited calfskin printing, sold by invitation only. Everything about both experience and object must be unique, amazing, and intimidating: a book, like its author, must thrive.)

Yet the mission of the work is simple. Many misunderstand the message: they see BAP make a positive case for this thing, that thing, some crazy thing; Hollow Earth, Fomenko chronology, genetic inferiority of Udmurt and other Finnic peoples… wake up! BAP has no “message” in this stupid sense.

Like his ancestor Nietzsche, BAP is not “for” this, that, the other thing. His book is not a lecture but a fire. It does not teach, it burns; it is not words, but an act.

And it has no message. But it does have a theme. The theme of Bronze Age Mindset is the smallness of the modern world—in mind, in space, in time. …

The ocean is much larger than its surface. Most of it is an empty desert. As a mass of meat, a mere human army, the deep right is tiny.

Yet as a space—artistic, philosophical, literary, historical, even sometimes scientific—all fields that are ultimately arts—the deep right is much larger than the mainstream.

If we compare just the books published in 1919, to those published in 2019, we see a far wider range of perspectives. Almost all present ideas are also found in the past; but almost all ideas found in the past have vanished. Like languages, human traditions are disappearing—and a tradition is much easier to extinguish than a language.

The theme of Bronze Age Mindset is that if you think your mind is broad and open, you are wrong. It is a tiny, hard lump, like a baby oyster—closed hard as cement by nothing but fear. “And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.”

This message cannot be said. It must be shown—performed. And the only way to show it is for one author, a character yet more than a character, to display mastery of that space—the whole immense space of mind and time and space outside our increasingly absurd little “mainstream” bubble.”

___________________________

I cannot tell whether this is pretentious twaddle, the beginning of something important, or both.

3 movies worth your time

Midway – historically accurate retelling of how the war in the Pacific was turned around. Insightful, good CGI, and well told. 4/5 points.

Image result for midway movie

Terminator: Dark Fate – worth it for a huge romp through crashing machines, beautiful Mackenzie Davis arriving naked from the future, and a consistently snappy script. Arnie does not disappoint. As a retired terminator living in Texas, he is mellowing and learning. I want to be thirty again just to be able to woo Mackenzie Davis. 4/5 points

Image result for mackenzie davis
Mackenzie Davis

Ford versus Ferrari – a truly great movie. Left us in tears of happiness. Great acting, script, direction, photography, and script. A very surprizing experience because it was so good in its taste and execution. Mrs. Dalwhnnie loved it too. 10/10 Best of the three in the long term.

Ford v. Ferrari (2019 film poster).png