A little item on the news this morning, that Catherine McKenna has green-lighted the Woodfibre LNG plant, with a note at the end of the item that a contract for the engineering had been let to Houston-based KBR.
Sound familiar? It should, since KBR is associated with Halliburton, hence inextricably linked with the shenanigans of one Dick Cheney, who had a few energy-oriented adventures in Iraq not so long ago. KBR was also a supply and infrastructure contractor for U.S. forces in Iraq, doing work that would, in times past, have been done by the grunts, but, hey, the grunts can just fight and KBR can do all the background work for a not-so-small premium.
Never mind that McKenna’s approval sets in motion a process that essentially negates her whole mandate and Minister of the Environment and Climate Change (at least in the way that I thought she would be attending to climate change), wherein she will not only blow through any promises made at the Paris climate talks, but also, given the fracking process to extract the NG, because she will become one of the proximate causes of the trashing of the environment in large swaths of rural Canada, particularly in BC.
It’s a rather ironic picture of Real Change and those who voted Liberal should be experiencing extreme cases of buyers’ remorse.
…thanks to, amongst others, Dr. Dawg, who beat me to the punch writing about the doings and skullduggery over at CRA with regard to KPMG and its Isle of Man Easter Egg Hiding Scheme. I recall reading some about this a couple of years back when it came to light that KPMG was fighting to keep docs away from CRA’s eyeballs and thinking, in a most un-justiceable sort of a way, something to the effect of there being fire in the proximity of smoke, and lo! the taxmen stumbled onto an inferno. Nice, but they agreed to let the arsonists off easy and throw a blanket of ND silence over the whole thing, so I get to bleat about being one of the fleeced rather than one of the shearers, along with the rest of the chatterers. The thing is, does anyone believe that the Isle of Man is the only haven for refugee tax-free cash? Is KPMG the only wayward “accounting” firm (shares of Arthur Andersen, aka Accenture, perhaps a good place to scout, were CRA to be interested). Are the KPMG clients the only miscreants looking to avoid paying for the lavish lifestyle lived by the DTES crowd or all those oil patch layoffs going home to the various bailiwicks of unemployment and precarity? Interestingly enough, I saw a report on France 2 a week or so ago where the French Ministry of Finance and shepherded 21 billion euros worth of UBS client money back into compliance from illegal offshore (Swiss have a loose definition of “shore”) in the last year, and they expect to do about that much business in the coming year as they engage with some of the big tech companies who have been profiting handsomely from some loopholes that turned out to me more loop than hole.
By all means, people can be forgiven for not paying Canadian taxes, as long as they don’t live in Canada or do business in Canada. Anyone who lives and/or works in Canada, anyone who benefits from Canada should pay a fair proportion of the cost. All those involved at KPMG should be rewarded with a long stay in the GrayBar Hotel, and the wayward clients, having knowingly participated in the export of cash, should bring it back, pay the interest and penalties in full, and a premium for the research and court costs, upon conviction, of course.
In Libération this morning, a little item that the French government is readying a law that would decouple the link between polluters and players when it came to assessing penalties for environmental damage. Our provincial government may not have done this in legislation, but they have surely accomplished the same end without bother of recourse to the law, given what has transpired in the wake of the Mt. Polley tailings dam breach and subsequent run-off. There are many other instances where the law is twisted, flouted or simply ignored, and it wouldn’t surprise in the least to have the CC gang simply change the law in their favour. They seem to have captured the courts, a group where certain strata of the judicial corps seem not to have heard of SC decisions regarding treaty rights. But, what the hell, with CETA and the TPP, the law is pretty meaningless in any case, sort of a glass case through which citizens can witness the destruction of civil society as it is dismantled by secret tribunals in another room, behind the curtain,