Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the
round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're
not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify
them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change
things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the
crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that
they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Steve Jobs
US computer engineer & industrialist (1955 - 2011)

Friday, June 5, 2015

The Corruption Culture in Newfoundland's Politics.

I've been writing on the corruption within Newfoundland's governing circles for years. In fact, I did a series on potentially corrupt practices by Ministers of this government, and its predecessors in a multi-part series on this blog called "All the King's Men". I've exposed the fact that Ben Aissa, convicted and disgraced SNC Lavalin VP, was appointed to a SNC numbered corporation here in Newfoundland during 2007-2008 (during the period SNC was pushing a large LNG project and a refinery to be located in Placentia area), and which mysteriously was dissolved at the end of 2008 when both projects failed. That blog is here.

I've written on a scheme that paid the Innu people $5,000.00 per person days after they voted for the Muskrat Falls project to proceed. That link is here. I wrote on the Innu cabinet minister that figured prominently in that deal, and was then turfed from office over illegal campaign donations - mostly from Muskrat Falls contractors, or those associated with the iron ore mining industry that would directly benefit from Muskrat Falls. His campaign manager was just charged by Elections Canada over the issue. That story was here and here and here.

I've written on the Muskrat Falls contractors who've donated directly to PC Party and its MHAs, including corruptly disgraced SNC Lavalin here. I've even written on the law firms, primarily in Quebec, that have donated to the PCs and received millions from Nalcor and the government in fees over the Muskrat Falls project here.

Over and over again the same patterns appear. Over and over again they repeat themselves. The corruption culture in Newfoundland is beyond the pale. The latest scandal over Muskrat Falls is the realization that Nalcor hired a construction firm out of Quebec, whose owner has admitted to paying  off government officials for contracts with bags of money and free holidays. (here). Now, this morning, in an attempt to turn the channel quickly, Premier Davis is offering up a cancellation in the HST hike because oil is "high". Peculiar given oil rests at $65 a barrel, down from $110 just a year ago... strange for a government that relies on oil for 33% of its annual budget.

Truth is this government and Nalcor will do anything to suppress information, real information, on Muskrat Falls. It is absolutely submersed in corruption and more likely than not influence peddling. It's not a coincidence that firms like SNC Lavalin, Genivar, and now the latest Opron have ended up on the Muskrats Falls payroll. The payroll of Nalcor. All Quebec construction firms. All implicated in corrupt practices. Not "best practices", the term Nalcor likes to throw around like candy to justify its business dealings.

Indeed, corruption permeates our political system here. It is endemic. You scratch my back and I'll scratch yours. It's "just the way it's always been done". In fact, it is a disgraceful indictment of a culture that needs to suffer an immediate and inglorious death. It reflects negatively on all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians. Why? Because it has been allowed to go on for generations with not much more than a wink and a nod. This isn't the first corrupt government here. It's just the latest. The next government, and there will be a next government, best realize that the culture of corruption is detested and disgraced world-wide. We are no different.  


  1. Good day to Brad Cabana, and many thanks to you and your comrades for having the courage and smarts, (and for putting in the work and expense), to “call it like it is” on behalf of future generations.

    Two questions for your readers:

    1. When are we (the general public) going to stop pretending that we actually live in a democracy, while the “elected”, (I.E. professional suck-ups (mostly) who are really appointed through a corrupt and archaic political system), do as they damn well please despite all reason, logic and public demands?

    2. What is Organized Crime? (Police definition follows), and does it accurately describe what really happens in Government/caucus?

    Canadian Definition: Within Canadian law enforcement, a legal definition for organized crime has only existed since the late 1990's following the enactment of Bill C-95. Amendments to this area of the Criminal Code have led to the present legal definition found within section 467.1(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada , which states a "criminal organization" means a group, however organized, that:
    (a) is composed of three or more persons in or outside Canada; and,
    (b) has as one of its main purposes or main activities the facilitation or commission of one or more serious offences, that, if committed, would likely result in the direct or indirect receipt of a material benefit, including a financial benefit, by the group or by any one of the persons who constitute the group.

    Muskrat Falls (among others) is a very serious offense. It is being committed as we speak. Many, including appointed officials are receiving financial benefits, (each pay period). Materials benefits include publicly funded pensions. Who knows what else? They won’t escape history, and they can’t escape their souls.

  2. What do we do next to stop and or change the system. Voting will not save us.

  3. Stand up and resist their lies and abuse in every way you can think of that's legal.


    1. Start with a cage containing five apes. In the cage, hang a banana on a string and put stairs under it. Before long, an ape will go to the stairs and start to climb towards the banana.

    2. As soon as the ape touches the stairs, spray all the apes with cold water. After a while, another ape makes an attempt with the same result - all the apes are sprayed with cold water.

    3. Turn off the cold water. If, later, another ape tries to climb the stairs, the other apes will try to prevent it even though no water sprays at them.

    4. Now, remove one ape from the cage and replace it with a new one. The new ape sees the banana and wants to climb the stairs. To his horror, all of the apes attack him. After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs, he will be assaulted.

    5. Next, remove another of the original five apes and replace it with a new one. The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The newcomer takes part in the punishment with enthusiasm.

    6. Again, replace a third original ape with a new one. The new one makes it to the stairs and is attacked as well. Two of the four apes that beat him have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs, or why they are participating in the beating of the newest ape.

    7. After replacing the fourth and fifth original apes, all the apes which have been sprayed with cold water have been replaced.

    Nevertheless, no ape ever again approaches the stairs. Why not?

    BECAUSE that's the way it's always been done around here.


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