Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Much Oda About Nothing

Today's poll question; do you support the federal government giving $7 million dollars of aid to Kairos? After turning on my TV today, it certainly seems as though the sky is falling because the government decided to deny funding. The NDP wants Bev Oda to be investigated by the RCMP! I would certainly concede that inserting the word "not" into a memo is "not" the smartest way to enact policy; yet I support the decision and believe that the government should have the power to make that kind of decision. It is hard for me to be critical of Bev Oda for enacting a policy that I support and that I believe cabinet should have the authority to do.

Next time, write a new memo saying that you are denying funding instead of changing the previous memo. Do I think Bev Oda belongs in jail? That's ridiculous. It's funny when you stumble on to the opposition reaction to a story before you even know what the story is; and you realize it is the same Chicken Little routine you've seen repeat itself so many times before in so many absurd situations. Yes, this is the end of our democracy and the Prime Minister can't be trusted, somebody call the police! I've heard that broken record before.

I don't know why I can't stop laughing...oh right, I just watched Iggy pop off in Question Period...


  1. Gotta love Rosemary Barton's post-QP wrap up, where she said that Minister Oda recently had eye surgery and had to wear special shaded glasses, and then proceeded to say that Oda not answering questions in Question Period shows the government is vulnerable on this.

  2. It isn't ridiculous to consider criminal charges against someone for illegally altering a signed government document.

    I'm sorry, but it's more than a memo, it's an official ministerial recommendation.

    The proper action would have been for the minister to not sign it at all. Then explain why she believes no funding should be given in a separate statement.

    There is also the fact that she lied to a parliamentary committee which too is a criminal offence much as lying under oath is.

    Is it too much to ask that the LAW is followed by our government? You seem to think so.

  3. The big word is Conservatives are the Government..not the NDP or Liberals..The Government makes policy,the opposition can kiss ass.

  4. I'm not crazy about Oda's methods here but its obvious that if they raise a stink about $7million cut, we are in for a fun budget.

    I'd like to see bigger cuts in fact.

  5. Well, actually, the government IS vulnerable on questions such as these. Not because there is any actual wrongdoing, but because there is a PERCEPTION of questionable actions.

    I have not followed this story closely, but once again it boils down to poor communication on the part of the government. When Kairos was first denied funding, the government should have clearly stated exactly why its funding has been discontinued.

    Then, once the memo was leaked (?) the minister should have held a press conference, saying exactly what had happened and apologized for not having ordered the memo be rewritten.

    That might have ended it. Instead, now the general public gets to hear 15 or 30-second clips of "doctored" or "forged" government documents. As if the general public doesn't distrust politicians enough!
    -- Gabby in QC

  6. CBC RADIO had Rob Russo(CBC HACK) on saying Bev Oda should step down.
    CBC TV just had Jennifer Henry (Manager of rights & dignity of Kairos) on crying a river....she is "Shocked" Question she was asked.."How do you feel that one minister killed it?" Answer..."Canadians want to know why".

    Don't think so....Just more CBC & Coalition looking for a scandal where there is none.
    Could have something to do with the poll numbers...slip, sliding away on the Coalition & Liberal media maggots. No theft here...move along.

  7. Judge Gomery ordered liberals to return the $40 million dollars which the liberals are yet to obey.

  8. The fuss is about the lying, not the funding. Party hacks will try to ignore that simple fact. The rest of us can see it clearly enough.

  9. If it were Bob Ray playing two-card-monte with the truth, we'd be up in arms.

    Let's be honest and consistent.

    This stinks.


  10. She has never come across as a strong minister but i resent the fact the opposition and media wait 2 years to attack when she is recovering from surgery.
    They did the same thing to Helena when she was recovering from miscarriage.
    The anti government vitriol rhetoric is planned to damage these Conservative women when they are at their weakest.

  11. Chris Hall on cbc just now said,'it has now been revealed,that Oda was out of the country when the document was signed..it was done by 'electric pen'.....so,did someone else do this?

    If true, who is setting up who. Someone needs to fired. Eventually the truth will come out and the PM and this govt will be vindicated.
    Also, see the latest Decima results.

  12. Don't like her methods, approve the cuts though. Still this is small potatoes and after five years there are bound to be afew snafoos. Over it already, bring on a Harper majority!! Please!

  13. She forged the document. The document had already been signed two people in her department, and she forged the document to change its meaning. It is an offence under the criminal code punishable by up to ten years in prison, not to mention she could be charged with breach of trust.

    This is not a question of forms, or whether she should have drafted a new memo. She deliberately misrepresented the written opinion of two other people for her own purposes. If I wrote you a letter, signed it, and you doctored it before publishing it, I'd want you hung. I expect the original authors of the document that Oda forged want the same.

    Don't make this about Kairos. That's a tiny issue. This is about whether a minister of the crown can deliberately forge a document, when if you or I did it, we would see jail time.

  14. "It is an offence under the criminal code punishable by up to ten years in prison, not to mention she could be charged with breach of trust."

    Please provide a link where we can read that. Sorry, it's not enough on your say-so.
    -- Gabby in QC

  15. I'd fund KAIROS if it was up to me but the government isn't obliged to fund any organisation. That said, avoiding responsibility and skirting the truth in a "what does is mean" manner demonstrates incompetence and a disregard for Parliament.

    She should be canned.

  16. The only sin on Oda's part is that she over turned her bureaucrat's decision. The bigger sin here is that the bureaucrats made the spat and the document public. The deputy minister should be fired over this one not the minister.

  17. a link to where it's a crime to forge a document? Are you serious? Any MP should be held accountable for their actions. If we hold the liberals accountable and make fun of them regularly for it, it's an embarrassment for a conservative minister to act this way.

    How many times does it have to be pointed out, this has nothing to do with anything other, than the fact she misled/lied/spoke a mistruth (whatEVER) to Parliamentarians and Canadians, she forged the document, and this, is a crime in this country!


  18. She didn't forge anything; she over rode her department, which is her perogative as minister. Read the transcript from the original hearing:


    Note that she states that she ordered the change but did not know who di, which I interpret to mean she didn't know which staffer was given the task of changing it. Given that she likely sees hundreds of documents that her department generates in a given week this does not surprise me.

  19. I agree that this is much ado about nothing, and a case of hysterical coalition, media co-ordinated lynch mob tactics, blowing it all out of any proportion. This is about the coalition's ideological buddies at Kairos losing their taxpayer welfare and an entitled "Liberal" bureaucracy having their policies over ridden. The coalition and their whores in the media have a strategy of going after every woman serving in cabinet, and the "Liberal" bureaucracy cannot be trusted, Oda should have been aware of this. On the good side, 7 million dollars has been saved by axing the funding to a coalition mouthpiece. Next time Oda does her job and over rides the wish's of entitled "Liberal" bureaucrats, be up front about it, and watch you're back for knives when you do.

  20. >Brett...

    she lied to parliament. She mislead them when questioned, and that's the problem.

    Watching people falling over themselves excusing this behaviour, smacks of the liberals trying defend theirs when they lie.

    Don't gloss over what happened. She should step down for misleading, and that's all there is to it.

    If this behaviour is excused and allowed, then anyone mouthing off about a liberal is a total hypocrite.

  21. From what I can gather, she did not actually write it in herself, but she issued the order to repeal the funding promise that was made without her consent. Whoever wrote "not" should have initialled it and written the date.

    A bureaucrat made the decision to grant the funding without ministerial approval, the minister ordered it repealed, and then another bureaucrat over-ruled it and did not initial. The Minister will not be charged with doctoring anything.

    Also, this happened in 2009. It seems odd that it is just coming out now. Kairos can't just be finding out now that they did not get funding.

  22. While Ignatieff is grandstanding in the House against a 7 million dollar saving for Canadian taxpayers by cutting funding to Kairos, what Canadians think is important and want answers from Ignatieff, the next time he is on his feet in the House is

    What is Ignatieff's reply to Gilles Duceppe and the Bloc who are demanding $5-billion for Quebec, including $2.2-billion to compensate the province for harmonizing its provincial sales tax with the federal goods and services tax or they will precipitate a 350 million dollar election.


    Judge Gomery, acting on behalf of Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin, to get to the bottom of Adscam scandal, found Liberals guilty of stealing 40 million dollars, and ordered them to repay the Canadian taxpayer the money. When can the Canadian taxpayer expect the 40 million dollar

  23. "When can the Canadian taxpayer expect the 40 million dollar payment?"...just as soon as we can get back into power and start stealing from you suckers again. Silly question. :)
    That been said, Harper should have give her the boot right away. This is a serious offence that she committed as Mr Bowie and others so eloquently stated.

  24. Re if the the Libs did it. If the Liberals had defunded Kairos in exactly the same fashion, I would have applauded them because it was the right thing to do.

    However most Lib scandals with money involved the Libs enriching themselves, not saveing taxpayers money.

  25. Wow. So many anonymous Liberal trolls have come scurrying out of the woodwork for this one, haven't they? Just shows their desperate search for something (ANYTHING) to use in their ongoing futile efforts to make the Conservative look bad (and thus make themselves look better by comparison).

    First of all, no one can prove that Bev Oda actually 'lied' about anything. She's human. She forgets things, like we all do (how many documents, memos, proposals and other pieces of paper has she put her signature to so far?). But go ahead and pursue this if you like. Go ahead and try to find evidence that the Minister *deliberately and willfully* attempted to deceive Parliament. Evidence, kids...not accusations, not speculation. Cold, hard, irrefutable evidence worthy of a court of law.

    Secondly, there seems to be a lot of confusion on the actual meanings of the words 'forgery' and 'fraud' (the LibLogs are going crazy...it's really quite funny...:).

    Forgery is defined as "the making of a false document, knowing it to be false with intent that it should be used or acted on as genuine to the prejudice of another".

    Fraud means "deliberate misrepresentation which causes another person to suffer damages (usually monetary)".

    Neither is applicable here, sorry. The glaringly large arrow and the 'NOT' are more comical than deceptive. Minister Oda could have written "SCREW THIS!!" in big capital letters with a large smiley face if she wanted to...so what? It was merely a written recommendation to her, and one that she was NOT BOUND TO ACT ON. She could have shredded it, or set fire to it, or done whatever she wanted with it (including simply ignoring it). Her little alteration (CTV screams "doctoring!", of course...but who really takes them seriously anymore anyway?) CHANGED NOTHING. She's the boss, and she makes the decisions whether they are written, electronic or oral. She is completely free to accept or reject the advice given to her as she sees fit. Her department is not a democracy, and at least one of the others signers of this paper has also acknowledged this fact.

    A 'tempest in a teapot', and it only serves to make the Liberals and NDP look pathetic and desperate. Thanks! ;)

  26. I love the title Iceman!

    It pretty much summarizes my opinion on the whole thing.

  27. I have to say that the more I learn about the story, the more comfortable I am joking about the opposition position.

    She didn't do anything wrong.

  28. Fred from BC gets my vote for 'Most Clarity'. Those are the sort of researched answers that as taxpayers, we should ALL want.

    These 'Anonymous' drive bys with nothing more than repeated talking points from the last blog they visited or grumpy old men at CTV or CBC offer nothing.

  29. Fred from BC.....ditto.

    All the maggot Liberals are onto this like dogs chewing on a bone.

    I'd like CBC & CTV to do a few stories on Judy Scro and her lies about the money she sucked out of taxpayers for her rent.....how about a story on Pablo and his drunk driving mishap? He couldn't BLOW. What about a story on I Ruby and her latest lies? How much did the Million dollar couple Layton and Chow charge taxpayers on their expence accts again? How about a story on sneaky CTV deleting Iggys words in a press scrum and their shamefull toothpaste crap on QP last week. On and on....

    The sooner we are rid of the thiefing , lying Liberanos, the better off this country will be. "Hug a thug" Coalition of losers along with their lying media buddies.

  30. what is -wrong-... with you people.

    This has NOTHING, to do with defunding Kairos. NOTHING.

    She doctored a document after it was signed, and then misled the house about it. Now she's admitted to doing what she said she didn't!

    She did nothing wrong?

    In this business world, it's considered 'fraud'.

  31. Annon 6:05 If indeed she changed the document before SHE signed it to reflect her wishes which she had repeatedly stated then she didn't 'doctor' the document. If someone went against her wishes and signed the document without her approval then they forged a document. If you want to blame someone blame the bureaucrats for trying to slide a fast one by their boss. I want those bureaucrats fired Yesterday!

  32. Kairos doesnt deserve funding period.They can sell t shirts to fund their organization.It looks to me someone tried to get the funding pushed through under Oda's nose and she caught it.The govts position about Kairos was quite clear.

    Further proof underlings need to be fired and other positions re assessed and scrutinized.In other words trim the the red tape.CHOP CHOP!


  33. Liberals are looking more and more like bullies condemning Oda and demanding a resignation before all the facts are in and the explanation, as well as the whole Kairos story. They hounded Guergis out with a bunch of driveby smears, so we shouldn’t let it happen again. The Kairos story is an old one and Liberals lost the first round when they protested the 7 million dollar grant and they are hoping they have something here ( another did Harper swallow or pocket the wafer). Bottom line is Liberals and NDP support and defend Kairos and that is not a winner and is also a 7 million dollar loser money wise. My own gut feeling is this Oda controversy will bring more votes in then it loses because opposition are acting like a bunch of bullies on poor Oda. I think this should also do more good for the caucus as they should unite and defend a colleague and their government. By the way do we see Pablo stepping down or fading into the background or giving up any of his duties and his case and defense doesn’t appear to be worth a dam in the public’s eye – drunk driving and getting involved in an accident gets no sympathy from the general public any more nor does the leader Ignatieff in how he views this serious charge against his member?

  34. As I commented over at Brian Lilley's blog ...

    Tim Naumetz’s article here http://www.thehilltimes.ca/dailyupdate/view/79

    A few relevant points that I gleaned from that article:

    • The minister was already “at loggerheads” with the bureaucrats in her department.
“… It [CIDA] would submit for the minister’s consideration only funding projects CIDA itself had already reviewed and decided to recommend for support, the source said. Ms. Oda had been insisting that the agency also provide her with funding requests CIDA had turned down. …”

    So, Oda wanted to know about ALL projects making funding requests, but the bureaucracy apparently did not agree she should have that information.
    Why should the bureaucracy determine which documents the minister should or should not have access to?

    • “… If she did not agree with the CIDA recommendation, her response was apparently to simply not sign the recommendation, and send it back to the agency. …”

    That apparently was not done in the KAIROS case.
    So, that raises the possibility that someone in the bureaucracy tried to slide one past Oda, approving KAIROS’ funding when she didn’t agree with it, especially since she was apparently not in Ottawa at the time of the signing and/or the addition of the “not” to the document.

    ” … Ms. Oda (Durham, Ont.) was out of Ottawa and not physically present when she instructed someone to change the document, and her signature was placed at the bottom of the letter with a signature instrument—called “the arm”—which all Cabinet ministers, and most MPs, often use to put their imprimatur on many of the hundreds of documents and letters they deal with every week. …”

    Which brings up another question … why bother having elections and paying MPs and Ministers good salaries if the Minister’s decision can possibly be changed by an enterprising bureaucrat with pet projects in mind?
Was that the case with KAIROS?
    -- Gabby in QC

  35. Did a comment I posted @ February 16, 2011 9:54 AM go astray?
    -- Gabby in QC

  36. Sorry Gabby, it got caught in the spam filter. There it is and might I say it is a fantastic comment.

  37. Please, no apology needed ... I was wondering if I had misplaced it somewhere else ;-)
    -- Gabby in QC

  38. 1) Did Bev Oda lie? When asked, she told the Foreign Affairs committee that the decision to cut funding was based on CIDA's recommendation as KAIROS didn't align with CIDA's priorities. This turned out to be false - CIDA approved the funding and was recommending to the minister that it go ahead - evidenced by their signature and confirmation that the "not" was not there at the time. Oda admitted all this in the HoC. She overruled CIDA's decision (her perogative) - but this is not what she testified at the FA committee.

    2) Who says we saved $7M? Won't the $ just be spent on some other CIDA initiative?

    3) Is it not concerning that a $7M decision can be approved or denied by an unknown person scribbling "not" on a signed document? Whatever you think about KAIROS they deserve due process, and fair consideration.

  39. Prof. Pye Chartt
    Evidently, the Opposition's peanut gallery is absent any legal eagles. The hurled accusations of "forgery" and "fraud" border on comical, and are based entirely upon purposeful partisan assumptive manipulations. (By the way, CTV, Minister Oda never said that she didn't know how the "NOT" got there; rather, she specifically indicated that she didn't know WHO penned the "NOT." A material difference of importance. She later clarified that she made the direction.) It is NOT the case that the Minister signed the memorandum, along with the V.P. and President of CIDA, in united "approval," and then she, or someone, grabbed the document out of a file, after the fact, and wrote "NOT" on it, without CIDA's knowledge. (Kindly get your facts straight, folks.) Rather, Ms. Oda directed that the memorandum -- still yet to be signed by her -- be amended to reflect the final and ultimate decision of the government, which, of course, ran contrary to CIDA's recommendation, but is entirely within the bounds of governmental entitlement and UNILATERAL procedure. A conscious decision was made to NOT simply refrain from signing it, to create a material record of the final overriding decision. (Note: the format of such memorandums is in the process of being changed.) Her decision, the government's decision, was discussed with the President of CIDA. Said President has already supported this on the record. No "forgery," "fraud," or "illegal doctoring" took place. If Ms. Oda is guilty of anything, it is failing to be sure-footed, not being fully explanatory, utilizing poor grammar ("DO NOT" should have been inserted), and allowing the raging clowns in the Opposition to rattle her. ...Iggy's acting like a toothless dog with a plastic bone in its mouth.