Thursday, May 31, 2012

Mayorgate's 2nd Anniversary

Mayorgate's second anniversary has come, some may think of it as the terrible two's, others simply of abortion. But its too late for that, we are here growing stronger with each article. I am proud to say that we are read now in sixteen different countries other than Canada, as far as China and Russia, Спасибо. Our not so humble beginnings have long gone and the issues we deal with though still do not leave out local interest and concern yet have expanded to encompass provincial, federal and even further afield. Still our 'precious' little mayor, Mayor Brian McMullan tried to lay claim to Mayorgate as the sole reason for its existence. I might of felt it an honour to have such an attachment if it was someone else though.

True the Mayor of St. Catharines, Brian McMullan made this claim through his lawyer in writing, “Even the domain name of the website is intended to suggest that Mr. McMullen is engaged in a political scandal.” This letter was delivered to my home from Christopher Bittle, of Lancaster, Brooks & Welch on behalf of Mr. Brian McMullan, dated September 1st 2011. My response was loud, clear and public with article Mayor McMullan attempts shutdown of Mayorgate.  Needless to say not a squeak has been heard from the legal eagle Christopher Bittle, nor from Lancaster, Brooks & Welch nor from our 'precious' Mayor Brian McMullan. Christopher Bittle went on to make this claim on behalf of his client Mayor Brian McMullan, “The above noted remarks are patently false and not supported by any facts.” Christopher Bittle should know there was a reason his client did not proceed with his attempted threat and harassment of Mayorgate, and that was because everything we print, every article is based on fact supported with hard cold evidence. He as a lawyer surely should know that?

But I have begun the obligatory reminiscing without any warnings. Still the attempted threat and harassment by our 'precious' Lord Mayor Brian McMullan was a true highlight for the year. So although the tag team of McMullan and Bittle did claim 'ownership' on Mayorgate with “the entire purpose of the website is to defame Mr. McMullen,” we were able to tear ourselves away and deal with the odd story of importance. Our 'precious' Elizabeth her Royal Highness and her personal representative the Governor General of Canada were the centre of more than one article. Prime Minister Stephen Harper was not left out of the line-up nor his ministers. Brian McMullan's dear and 'precious' pal Jim Bradley could not be forgotten, nor his boss Premier Dalton McGuinty, and so many more. This leads me to make this challenge publicly. I will be glad to interview anyone who has a rebuttal to anything published on Mayorgate. I will record the interview in its entirety and then publish the phone interview. Though I warn you be prepared to answer some questions that may be less than comfortable.

Who has the courage to take up this challenge? Will Dr. Valerie Jaeger MD PhD, the most senior medical officer in the Niagara Region of Ontario, a practising family physician and responsible for the public health of over 430,000 Niagara residents, who is a liar, explain why she lied. All the details are in the most recent article Dr. Valerie Jaeger MD, PhD., LIED!. Every one of us, in fact the world over can relate to the need to trust the doctor we go to seek help from. How do we trust a doctor who has lied, and not only to the public but to her superior Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs. My recorder is ready Dr. Valerie Jaeger.

Shawn Wilson and Fred Hahn both presidents at CUPE, both know all about deceit. Fred Hahn lied in his written communications and Shawn Wilson, well that's a whole new angle on union representation. Wilson is not only another president of CUPE, they seem to have many presidents at CUPE, but he is also in fact an employer of CUPE members as a Thorold City Councillor. In fact the mess doesn't end there, Shawn Wilson presides over CUPE Local 1287, and CUPE 1287 threatened an elected government and an elected regional councillor to shut down any possible investigation of abuse of the public purse by CUPE members. I would like to ask some questions of both Wilson and Hahn.

Now there is John Reiter a nobody really when we speak of politicians, doctors and union presidents, yet John Reiter and his wife Linda Reiter need to answer some serious questions. For over five years they were able to break the law and not face any consequences on a daily basis.

There is Her Majesty the Queen, though thinking of interviewing Her Majesty might be a touch of fantasy, I should be happy that a second letter from Buckingham Palace arrived for now. The Governor General is a different story but alas David Johnston would rather hide behind a skirt than answer any questions. Mayorgate's wish list of potential candidates for an interview is long and it remains only a wish list. Not one of the candidates could face the questions raised through the articles of Mayorgate. Can anyone imagine Eleanor Lancaster flapping her eyelids trying to explain the truth as to why she left out Mayor Brian McMullan from the campaign fund audits. Or Mayor Brian McMullan making his speeches to answer anything raised in the articles on Mayorgate. Not to forget Brian's best buddy and protector Minister Jim Bradley, the pebbles of the Ontario Provincial Liberal Party. Jim is a tough guy after all, he has ignored his boss Premier McGuinty, he has ignored the people who elected him as their representative, in fact he even ignored the families of the victims of the horrific C-difficile outbreak and instead talked about the new hospital.

This list is indeed long and Mayorgate has created a dust storm, enough to have endured more than one attempt to shut us down. We have even been copied and then told it was done to benefit us. Still it is time to look more to the future even though to reminisce is enjoyable. Her Majesty has sent a second letter and that shall be published with a full response to Buckingham Palace. All the horrors of the orange water discharging into the natural environment demands a follow-up with the Ministry of the Environment response that has been received and still only silence from (Environment) Minister Jim Bradley.

As environmental issues stand close to the media's attention gauges it is difficult to leave out some questions of the more popular public figures in the 'big' environmental movement. Dr. Rick Smith the head of Environmental Defence has made public pleas for help to fight the government and the 'labelling' that he claims is unfair. Yet Rick Smith has not really been truthful and Mayorgate will be asking some less than favourable questions of Rick, sadly it won't happen face to face. Although Rick Smith and others like Mark Mattson of the Lake Ontario Waterkeeper and David Suzuki are on the wish list of candidates for an interview, none would find the courage to answer any questions raised by Mayorgate in person and on record.

Mayorgate does not editorialize nor make speeches. Our articles are based on fact which is verifiable and supported by documentation. Mayorgate raised questions that are rarely raised by popular media as we have no political alliances nor do we have any IOU's outstanding. We are growing and it is not possible to ignore us, otherwise why would Brian McMullan, or David Beers Editor in Chief of The Tyee find the need to threaten Mayorgate.

Mayorgate will continue with the same principles. We will continue to provide articles based on fact and ask questions no one wants to answer. Still the best has been saved till last as often is said. The incredible talent of young artist Alexandra Davidoff. This young artist provides the visual commentary as opposed to the common label of caricature. Alexandra's art does not need to play with physical deformities such as an extended Pinocchio nose of deceit, nor the ears of Dumbo flapping against the wind of change. Rather Alexandra's art is to bring a visual synopsis of the article, one that does not leave out an opportunity to raise a smile. Our Emancipated Monkeys owe their existence to Alexandra, The Puppet Rap on YouTube and Kai Nagara together with David Beers of The Tyee owe their existence to Alexandra, and perhaps my favourite Selective Justice = Blind Justice. That one piece of art depicts my fear of where our Canadian society is heading and we have enough to point at as examples even on Mayorgate.

Mayorgate is ready to take our first steps into our third year and lets see where the future will take us all. As author of Mayorgate I have stretched my writing somewhat further away from the articles dealing with our community, environment or politics by writing a children's book. The book titled, 'Harri & Luna' will soon be available through Amazon. This story is steeped in traditions of right and wrong, good and evil, and the strength of love and friendship. Wow, it almost has a similarity to the articles on Mayorgate except for love and friendship. Pick it up, I think it's well worth the read.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Dr. Valerie Jaeger MD, PhD., the Chief Medical Officer for the Niagara Region is a LIAR and all the facts supported with documentation are provided here. As the most senior medical officer for the Regional Municipality of Niagara and as a medical doctor Valerie Jaeger holds a position of trust and respect. That is no more the case and a full provincial investigation is immediately required with the removal of Dr. Jaeger from her post.

Here in the Niagara area we do not need to be reminded of the pain we had to survive through the horrors of the C-difficile outbreak. How many friends and families are still coming to grips with the loss of loved ones. Our pleas for help were ignored by Premier McGuinty and Health Minister Deb Matthews until the death toll rose to over three dozen. Minister Jim Bradley, the elected representative of St. Catharines found that talking about the new hospital was his way out of dealing with the people. In the end Premier McGuinty had no choice and a provincial supervisor was established to reorganize our trust in the Niagara Health System. Premier McGuinty's actions in fact have placed our Niagara Health System and all those who are part of it under provincial jurisdictional authority and that of the Ontario Ombudsman's Office. Dr. Kevin Smith has been sent to rebuild our trust in the most important facet of existence, our health and its care.

Now the very essence of public health and its safety has been shaken to its core by the one individual who is placed in the most senior position as its caretaker. Without trust in the most senior medical officer of our region we as the people of Niagara face a dangerous road ahead. The year 2011 brought the true reality of politics versus health with the loss of so many innocent victims. We now face the same question, will politics win over the issue of protecting our public health.

As we walk into our doctor's office, be it our family physician or another specialist, we do so with a degree of trust. Dr. Valerie Jaeger MD has destroyed every ounce of trust that may exist in her with her actions centred around March 13th and 14th of 2012. It is irrelevant to bring back her past and any success in it, all that matters now is that we cannot believe anything that comes from her again.

Dr. Valerie Jaeger lied in writing, not of something insignificant but a serious issue that has the potential to affect all of those who use Lake Ontario either for their water supply or recreational purposes. Jaeger lied in writing to her superior Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs, to Regional Councillor Andrew Petrowski and to a member of the public. This was done via individual emails to each of the three in relation to a situation surrounding orange coloured water with a blue sheen and rainbow on the surface discharging into a drainage ditch in the open environment. This drainage ditch is attached to a storm water run-off sewer, and no one can say that orange water is a normal occurrence and especially not with the rainbow on the surface.

As stated an email was sent by Dr. Jaeger to her superior, Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs. To intentionally deceive one's boss would in most cases bring immediate dismissal and since Chairman Burroughs has been provided all the hard evidence that proves Dr. Jaeger's deceit, it is interesting to see what action is taken. In addition to Regional Chairman Burroughs being made aware so have the six regional councillors and others, of Dr. Jaeger's intentional deceit and lies. All of this centres around an email sent to Dr. Valerie Jaeger March 9th 2012 informing her of orange coloured water that had a blue sheen and a rainbow on the surface being discharged into a drainage ditch, the drainage ditch is connected to a storm water run-off sewer catch basin. A rainbow on the surface of water is an immediate sign of a petroleum effluent and not exactly safe to reach the fresh water supply.

It is the response by Dr. Jaeger that is shocking. In her email to me dated March 14th 2012 she states: “Based on information from the Ministry of Environment, with whom we have a close working relationship, complaints about orange precipitate in the ditch date back to 2009.” AN ABSOLUTE LIE! She also tells Regional Chairman Burroughs in her email to him, “Based on information from the Ministry of Environment, complaints about orange precipitate in the ditch date back to 2009.”

In 2009 I filed an application for investigation with the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario which the ECO approved and requested the Ministry of Environment to investigate. The parameters of the investigation centred on the burial of hazardous waste material by the owner of Sun Collision such as asphalt, tires and concrete with re-bar. The Ministry of Environment only conducted their investigation based on the original application to the ECO. At no time or in any form did I mention any discoloured water or with a rainbow. There were no signs of orange water in 2009 and no mention of it in my application for investigation approved by the ECO. Sun Collision and its owner were found to have contravened Ontario Regulation #347 by burying hazardous waste material and Sam Demita ordered to remove that material. Dr. Jaeger lied about complaints dating back to 2009 about “orange precipitate.”

Dr. Jaeger also states both to me and Chairman Burroughs that “complaints about orange precipitate in the ditch date back to 2009.” That would be absolutely impossible as there was no ditch in 2009. This drainage ditch was dug by Trillium Railway after April 2010 as a result of the investigation by MOE. Both the Standard and Niagara this Week ran articles on the issues of flooding in the neighbourhood and the investigation. In both it is stated by Mayor McMullan that a drainage ditch was to be dug, both of these articles date back to April and May 2010. To further confirm that the ditch did not exist in 2009 just listen to Merritton Ward Councillor Jennie Stevens and her now famous telephone answering machine message about the ticket fixing by Mayor Brian McMullan. In that message Councillor Stevens also informs Mr. Leeson of the drainage ditch to be dug, and that was in April 2010. How was it possible that any complaints be dated back to 2009 in relation to this ditch? Dr. Valerie Jaeger lied!

She continues, “In August of 2009 the Ministry of Environment gathered upstream and downstream water samples from the drainage ditch.” It has been established that the drainage ditch did not exist in 2009, any part of 2009. Could the MOE gather samples up or down, or for that matter underneath any stream in this non-existing drainage ditch? I can't see how, maybe time travel is the answer Dr. Jaeger is grappling with. Indeed the MOE did take samples during their investigation of 2009, and yes in their report they state it was from upstream and downstream. They were testing for any signs of adverse effect to the environment due to the burial of the hazardous waste by the owner of Sun Collision. At the time of the investigation there was no drainage ditch in existence so that was not possible and no mention of any orange water in the investigation request. Dr. Jaeger comes across as an incredibly deceitful individual, and there is still much more to come.

It is also true that the MOE provided results at the completion of their investigation that only iron was found at high levels but determined that it would not adversely effect the environment. Dr. Jaeger continues with her lies saying, “Even though there is no reason to believe that the orange water would have different cause than iron at this point in time.” To her superior Regional Chairman Burroughs she says “There is no reason to believe that the orange water would have a different cause than iron at this point in time.” Yet to Regional Councillor Andrew Petrowski, Dr. Jaeger went further, she made a definite statement not that she “believed” no, but stated a fact.

As you read Regional Councillor Petrowski's questions to Dr. Jaeger even more alarm bells sound off. Councillor Petrowski says “am I to understand that the Region has never had an interest in testing the suspect water (even though the pictures provided have been taken recently and happen to represent a different section of the abutting property) and is relying on the so-called “2009 MOE” report to base its “iron conclusion on?” Councillor Petrowski continues, “I trust also that the Region would want to test for the presence of solvents and heavy metals given the proximity of this discharge to a collision centre?” Dr. Jaeger responds to Councillor Petrowski with this, “The water is orange because of the iron content.” How was it possible to make this statement?, Jaeger had no samples taken and did no tests on the water. Dr. Jaeger's lies are beyond any possible understanding.

Councillor Petrowski did raise the question to Dr. Jaeger, although Jaeger conveniently avoided to answer and that in itself is a question. Councillor Petrowski asked if Jaeger was “relying on the so-called “2009 MOE report” in making conclusions of iron content. But it has now been established that the report of 2009 by the MOE had no orange water to test and the drainage ditch did not exist at the time of the 2009 investigation. Ignoring the questions raised by Councillor Petrowski, Dr. Jaeger makes it rather clear that her deceit was fully intentional and possibly with complete knowledge of the facts. Dr. Jaeger answers directly to Councillor Petrowski that “the water is orange because of the iron content.” This is an absolute lie intended to deceive a regional councillor. How could Dr. Jaeger make this statement? On what evidence did she base her statement? Finally, why did she find the need to lie in such a definite and intentional fashion to the councillor? To both Chairman Burroughs and to me Jaeger says that “yes there is a reason to believe” but to Councillor Petrowski she changes to “The water is...”. Dr. Jaeger's lies only grow in stature.

In her email to me Dr. Jaeger then says, “Since no-one in the area is on a well, this ditch does not impact drinking water.” To Regional Chairman Burroughs she says “This particular drainage ditch does not drain into any drinking water source or any recreational water source, such as a beach.” To Councillor Petrowski “as it does not impact drinking water or drain directly to recreational use areas such as a beaches.” Astounding statements by our trusted senior health official. With all the resources available to Dr. Jaeger she makes this statement, but by now it is easy to surmise why she had done so. Her email to me confirms that she had looked at my blog and the “pictures,” and that her Environmental Health Division people made “two site visits.” I guess the storm water catch basin was missed somehow?

I contacted Pubic Engineer Tim Marotta of the City of St. Catharines via email. My questions were simple in relation to the storm water run-off sewer that the drainage ditch spills into. Tim Marotta confirmed that this particular storm water catch basin is connected to the City of St. Catharines storm water sewer line on Merritt Street. In a second email Tim Marotta confirmed that in St. Catharines there are some combined sewers, which means that sanitary flows from homes and businesses as well as storm water run-off combine and flow through water treatment facilities. To quote Mr. Marotta now “The catch basin you asked about indirectly drains to Lake Ontario.” Which means the water from this storm water catch basin, to which the drainage ditch is attached first drains to Twelve Mile Creek and then to Lake Ontario. Whatever the contaminates are and the evidence proves that in the least a petroleum effluent is present is in the end carried to Lake Ontario. Yet Jaeger said “this ditch does not impact drinking water.”

To Councillor Petrowski, Jaeger says “does not impact drinking water or drain directly to recreational use areas such as beaches,” does it mean that as this storm water run-off as it is first drained into another form of catch basin, be it a natural one, and then Lake Ontario that it will have no impact on our drinking water or recreational water?

Twelve Mile Creek is a waterway located in the Niagara Peninsula of Ontario, its lower reaches flow through urban areas of Thorold and St. Catharines. It's named Twelve Mile Creek because its outlet is located approximately 12 miles from the Niagara River, draining a watershed of approximately 178 square kilometres and flows into Lake Ontario In Oakville. The drainage ditch has the orange water with the rainbow and sheen flow to the storm water run-off catch basin which is connected to the City of St. Catharines storm water run-off sewers on Merritt Street. This in turn takes the orange water and its rainbow to empty into Twelve Mile Creek, which in its turn flows into Lake Ontario in Oakville. So, since the sewer did not extend from the storm water catch basin directly into Lake Ontario Dr. Jaeger decided that she has no responsibility and only needed to lie to Chairman Burroughs, Councillor Petrowski and to me about the impact on drinking water or recreational use areas such as beaches.

In an interview with Paul Forsyth July 8th 2011 of Niagara this Week, Paul Forsyth attributes this to Dr. Valerie Jaeger in his piece titled 'Top Doc stresses teamwork' - “It's very important work to be responsible for the health of 430,000 people” conceded Jaeger, who even as a family doctor saw herself more as an educator than a healer. Her job, she said was to provide people with the information they needed so they could make the right health choices.”

We still need to trust our doctors whether the horrors of the D-difficile outbreak touched us directly, or simply because illness has come to us. How is it possible to have any trust in a doctor who has intentionally lied? The lies are of serious proportion and can not be excused in any way. At this time it is irrelevant what contaminates are in the water with the blue sheen, rainbow and orange discolouration. Only the lies by the most senior medical officer in the region are relevant.

Dr. Valerie Jaeger referred to an MOE investigation of 2009 and made statements in writing to three separate individuals, one being her superior. Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs was so impressed by Dr. Jaeger as she assisted Dr. Robin Williams during the feared H1N1 pandemic, that Chairman Burroughs claimed there was only one choice for the top position once
Dr. Robin Williams retired. Now I say bring back Robin Williams even if it has to be the one from Hollywood.

In 2009 there was indeed an investigation undertaken by the MOE, the report is posted with this article, and that investigation was conducted within parameters that were set by my original application to the ECO. Dr. Jaeger lied about complaints of orange water and about the drainage ditch dating back to 2009. She claims to have a close working relationship with the MOE, then who gave her this information and how. Jaeger will have no choice but to name her source at the MOE. No one at the MOE is likely to lie in such a fashion, so Jeager must produce the name of the individual. As the most senior medical officer in the region how is it that Jaeger did not ask for a copy of the MOE report of the 2009 investigation? All she had to do was ask even I could of provided that. Instead Dr. Valerie Jaeger lied to Chairman Burroughs, Councillor Petrowski and to me.

The Municipality of Niagara has the resources and the manpower to provide for any investigation that is necessary, yet Dr. Jaeger did not use any of it. I was able to confirm the flow from the storm water catch basin that this particular drainage ditch is attached to. How is it Dr. Jaeger was able to state that it has no impact on drinking water or recreational water when this catch basin indirectly empties into Lake Ontario? This storm water catch basin is connected to the City of St. Catharines' storm water sewer lines on Merritt Street and then proceeds the course eventually to Lake Ontario. Why would Dr. Jaeger lie about this fact?

Dr. Valerie Jaeger's actions demand immediate removal from such an important position as Senior Medical Officer of the Region of Niagara. As stated it is irrelevant for the moment what contaminants are present in the orange water. Dr. Jaeger lied about a great deal other than the potential contamination and that must be the only consideration now.

Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs praised Dr. Valerie Jaeger on her dedication now Chairman Burroughs has to answer the question on what is he going to do with Jaeger. The provincial Ministry of Health and Minister Deb Matthews had to approve Dr. Jaeger's appointment, and the minister has had all the details delivered to her. Will Regional Chairman Burroughs attempt to cover-up the deceit of Dr. Valerie Jaeger? Or will Regional Chair Burroughs show weakness in the position of a superior, as the head of the Regional Government of Niagara who has been lied to in writing, and not remove Jaeger immediately from her position? Regional Chairman Gary Burroughs has no choice but to remove Dr. Valerie Jaeger and make the investigation very public.

Six regional councillors elected to represent St. Catharines have had full packages delivered to them, they are: Andrew Petrowski, Bruce Timms, Tim Rigby, Alan Caslin, Ronna Katzman and Brian Heit. Five of these councillors sit on the Board of Health. Can any one of them remain silent? Can we allow silence on this very serious matter? St. Catharines Mayor Brian McMullan also a Board of Health member, as he was in August of 2010. At that time a huge surge of orange water came from a private parking lot drain. The City of St. Catharines was informed and sent a tanker truck and crew who pumped for some four hours. No samples were taken, no action taken. At the time the orange water spilled down a driveway onto Pinecrest Avenue and the storm water run-off sewers. This was only approximately 150 metres from the very site where the orange water reappeared in 2011 to the present. St. Catharines Mayor Brian McMullan is the Canadian head of The Great Lakes & St. Lawrence Cities Initiative that is supposedly dedicated to the protection of our Great Lakes. Current Regional Chair Gary Burroughs sits as a member of The Great Lakes & St. Lawrence Cities Initiative as was current Regional Councillor Tim Rigby when he was mayor of St. Catharines.

The protection of our lakes is an important issue but the public health and its safeguard even more so. As the region's most senior medical officer Dr. Valerie Jaeger MD, PhD., cannot under any circumstances be allowed to lie and deceive. Trust in any doctor is of great importance, and the trust in our most senior medical officer even more so. Dr. Valerie Jaeger must be removed from her position and a full investigation ordered by the Ministry of Health and Minister Matthews. Dr. Jaeger has serious questions to answer as to how she based her lies and why. Her contact at the Ministry of the Environment Niagara District office must be identified and questioned. All the facts are provided here and to all who should be aware of them. No denial is possible and no excuses acceptable from Dr. Valerie Jaeger.

Dr. Valerie Jaeger lied and she now must explain why.

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Friday, May 11, 2012


The fiasco surrounding Municipal Elections of 2010 has not reached an end with legal action taken by councillors who faced an audit of their campaign finances. All four had taken illegal contributions, all four had breached the Municipal Elections Act and yet they claim to have had their names dragged through the mud because of the public audits examining their campaign finances. They now demand that their legal expenses be paid by the individual who requested the audit in the first place.

Ontario's Municipal Elections Act makes it very clear as to the maximum any candidate may accept from an individual or business. Accepting an illegal contribution is in breach of the Act, although prompt repayment of an over-contribution can safeguard a candidate from penalty. It is of great importance to note that the candidate can only escape facing a penalty for the illegal contribution, or if you prefer over-contribution, by making prompt return of illegal monies, that candidate is not exonerated of the breach itself. Two of the 'hurt' candidates have had previous experience with elections as candidates, and two are new to the game. One a school teacher and the other an 'entrepreneur', both it would seem have a good enough command of the English language. They all breached the Municipal Elections Act by taking illegal contributions and proved it by returning the money. Would they have done so for any other reason? The answer without a doubt is a loud no. So to claim their names were dragged through the mud is ludicrous, they did this to themselves. Having said this, they may have legal grounds for their actions.

Since Eleanor Lancaster first raised the issue of illegal contributions she has been allowed to walk away from answering the most important question. Why was she selective in her actions? Eleanor Lancaster intentionally left out the one individual who had the most illegal contributions, Brian McMullan. She had claimed to have made an error in filling her audit request in relation to both Tim Rigby and Andy Petrowski. Lancaster had attempted to file the audit request for both regional candidates at the City of St. Catharines Clerks' office. Yet Eleanor Lancaster was a regional councillor herself. Nothing at all about her excuses makes any sense nor is it based in logic.

There has been enough said in accusations that Eleanor Lancaster had selected those who were in favour of the Port development only. True Len Stack clearly supported the development and Brian Dorsey was a councillor who in 2006 had been with Tim Rigby to sign the whole thing and pass it. But hold it a minute now, Matt Harris was not in the group, he is new and his background was mainly showing involvement with health and community care issues. Matt Siscoe came to St. Catharines in 2006, one could say as a matter of the heart. He had met his wife in South Korea who was a St. Catharines resident as they were both working there. No connections to City politics and not even from the area. Both Andy Petrowski and Tim Rigby are and were supporters of the Port, though Petrowski was only a citizen making his usual presentations at council. Tim Rigby nursed the whole thing as a baby in his dying days in office as Mayor of St. Catharines who signed the whole thing late in 2006. Yet Lancaster gave both of them a free 'get out of jail' card! As I have said nothing makes any sense.

Eleanor Lancaster had to have gone through the financial statements of every candidate in the Municipal Elections of 2010, including mine. Heck the only thing I was guilty of was under-contribution. She had to have examined Mayor Brian McMullan's records and had to have seen that he had the most illegal contributions. Mayor Brian McMullan had over twenty years of political experience and to claim he did not know the rules would only be an insane lie. Instead Mayor McMullan never once made any real comment, he basically took the fifth and dropped it all onto his auditor. What or who gave Eleanor Lancaster the right to act as judge and jury?

Who gave Eleanor Lancaster the right to be judge and jury when Brian McMullan's financial report signed by Brian McMullan proves he had the greatest number of illegal contributions, he has over 20 years of experience in politics, no lies, no excuses. Eleanor Lancaster has a great deal to answer, the four who are suing her have the legal right to question her decisions. 

Mayorgate has reported on this issue with four articles: Candidate Double Dipping Campaign Funds July 21st 2011, Double-Dipping Part Two (Part Deux) August 5th 2011, Selective Justice= Blind Justice September 12th 2011 and Legal or Illegal... Or simply give it back? March 6th 2012. From the first article it was made clear that whatever the excuse given each candidate had breached the Municipal Elections Act. True the Elections Act does allow a candidate to return the illegal contributions and escape any penalty, but only that, to escape any penalty. Returning the money does not exonerate the candidate or pardon the candidate from breach of the Act. Yet one important point has been intentionally side-stepped, and that is if the acceptance of the illegal contribution was made with full awareness of the Act's restrictions. When you consider the experience of someone like Mayor Brian McMullan and ex-Mayor Tim Rigby it is impossible to sell the notion that they did not know the rules, or did not look at the financial sheets that carry their signatures. Penalties for knowingly accepting illegal contributions are severe, and not only for candidates.

The Act that we have is there to set out rules under which we are required to conduct ourselves for a reason. Candidates have conditions and restrictions to abide by and so the donors. Penalties against donors who intentionally breach the restrictions placed on contributions also are severe. Judge Harris touched on this in his decision February 2012, but only touched it a little. If Eleanor Lancaster was out to crucify only Port supporters as Andy Petrowski claims, then why would she leave out Dan Raseta from any public comment. After all Dan Reseta was a Port Developer. Dan Raseta was a partner in the Port Dalhousie Vitalization Corp. and spent years fighting the community over the project to develop the lakeside village.

Dan Raseta is not new to donations to politicians, nor is he a virgin in the game of politics, yet he handed out more than one illegal contribution. These were Raseta's words as reported at the time by Matthew Van Dongen of The Standard, “It's not unfair, because those are the rules, we're very passionate about our community, so this is our way of participating in the democratic process.” As we all know now, no they are not the rules, and Dan Raseta had quite intentionally broken them. Still Eleanor Lancaster had not raised her voice in indignation against Dan Raseta. Candidates who received contributions from Dan Raseta's associated businesses included regional candidates Andy Petrowski and Tim Rigby, and municipal candidates Matt Harris, Len Stack and Mat Siscoe. Hold it a minute now... could it be that's the reason Eleanor Lancaster came after Sisco and Harris? Both were given contributions, illegal ones at that, by Raseta, is that the proof? Now sit down Petrowski no need to jump up and down with the “I told you so,” after all both you and Rigby were given illegal contributions yet Eleanor let you off the hook. Her excuse was an abomination to intelligence as she herself
was a former regional councillor.

To be fair to Dan Raseta's version on “those are the rules,” he was not only the one who dished out illegal contributions. Len Pennachetti with the development behind the new hospital provided illegal contributions to Mayor Brian McMullan, just ask Preston Haskell if he knows who Mr. Pennachetti is. Hotel owner Angelo Nitsopolous also gave double donations to Mayor McMullan as did John Rankin. Donors who knowingly give illegal contributions to candidates face equal and as severe penalties as do the candidates receiving illegal contributions. In our version of justice here in Niagara that equals to nothing at all. Of all the quotes one can use in relation to justice and its equality one stands out – 'SELECTIVE JUSTICE=BLIND JUSTICE' and that has been exactly the case here.

The electoral process is the cornerstone of our democracy, protected by rules and legislation to ensure fairness and equality. Accusations made by Eleanor Lancaster were based on fact, the financial returns signed by each candidate were proof enough. Yet the sheer notion that Eleanor Lancaster appointed herself judge and jury as to who faced the public questioning was repulsive. She intentionally left out Brian McMullan who had the greatest abuses of the legislation; she allowed two regional candidates Petrowski and Rigby off the hook with an unbelievable excuse in face of her own previous position as a regional councillor; and she did not at any time bring forward the information of abuse of legislation in relation to donors who
breached the rules such as Raseta, Pennachetti, Nitsopolous and Rankin. Nothing that Eleanor Lancaster did can face scrutiny under oath or examination with logic and fact.

Selective Justice always equals Blind Justice, and Blind Justice is No Justice at all. It is no more effective than banging a drum in a vacuum.

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Sunday, May 6, 2012


The Union movement found its crude beginnings in the early 1800's in Britain with tradesmen banding together against often unfair and harsh conditions. Workers in our infant stages of the developing Industrial Revolution were not far removed from slavery and had little choice but to stand together for the greater good of all. Unions became not only a necessity but a force that stood against child labour, harsh work conditions dealing with not only unfair treatment by employers but also with safety of the workers and fought for some form of equality in wages.

Canada saw its first strike in 1872 with Toronto printers fighting for a nine-hour day. This was considered illegal finding labour leaders arrested, but after mass protests not only were all charges dropped but union activity was given a legitimate acceptance and legalized. Workers found their champion and employers a formidable foe. Winnipeg of 1919 saw the first General Strike involving over 25,000 workers and a reaction by government with strike breakers, police and army to force an end to it. Our early association with the British Union Movement was gradually replaced with closer ties to our neighbours the Americans.

In 1937 collective bargaining was recognized and a ruling by Justice Ivan Rand made it mandatory for all workers to pay union dues whether or not they wanted to join a union ensured that union leaders were now slowly moving into a new direction. This decision was motivated by the accepted fact that everyone benefited from a union-negotiated contract, so everyone had to pay for it.

Early labour leaders had stood up for workers for one major reason, to fight for fairness for all workers. True there were those with political ideologies that found a soul mate in the union movement such as socialists and communists. Now union leaders find themselves in extremely well paid positions that do not suffer even during strikes. Some union leaders earn salaries in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, even rivalling some CEO's of major corporations. It would seem that the equality between union member and union leader has faded. Strikes depending on their duration bring pressures on those walking the picket lines, as no work equals no pay. Financial obligations and family considerations weigh a heavy burden, yet the union leaders see no such equation targeted at them.

New technology brought about new pressures on the workforce. Automation in manufacturing saw the loss of jobs on assembly lines and a chance for unions to flex their mighty muscles. The results were not beneficial and in a response brought new action by governments. Prime Minister Trudeau introduced mandatory price and wage controls in 1975 and British P.M. Thatcher went head to head with one of the strongest British unions. Thatcher won in the end, and the union movement arguably had lost some of its mystic.

Today with legislation in place to protect workers, unions have a harder time to convince all of their necessity. More and more manufacturing is being shifted to South America and in particular China. Cheap labour costs are more important to business over using unionized local labour. Politics has made a greater in-road to the union movement. True the New Democratic Party which started life in 1932 as the Co-Operative Commonwealth Federation has had only moderate success, still the NDP's union alliance remains as its foundation. Large unions such as the CAW and CUPE have a great deal of money to invest, after all they have to pay senior union leaders six figure salaries and some at the top even more. One such example in British Columbia is of the Working Enterprises, a family of companies affiliated with the British Columbia of Federation of Labour and their two thirds ownership of an on-line news service The Tyee. Whatever the size of a union or its membership, can any union be allowed to threaten an elected government or an elected member of government?

In the Niagara Region an elected regional councillor was alerted by members of the public of a situation that should require investigation and the councillor did just that, the results were astonishing. The situation was simple, members of the public had seen on a number of occasions regional employees take extra long coffee breaks at a McDonalds. These members of the public took their concerns to their elected representative, who in turn questioned how this could be possible. After all these individuals are paid with public money and in effect were cheating on the public purse. In the private sector such action would be warned against once and then if it continued the consequences may be harsh. Yet here as these employees were members of CUPE, the Canadian Union of Public Employees, the leaders of CUPE Local 1287 sent a letter of threat to the regional government.

Leaders of CUPE Local 1287 in fact threatened the regional government to take any action necessary to stop what they called harassment of their members, in reality to shut down an elected councillor who raised questions as to abuse of the public purse. Shawn Wilson as President of CUPE Local 1287 did not investigate the matter, nor did he or anyone form CUPE have the courage to call members of the public liars, instead they issued an ultimatum and threat.

This was not an issue of wages or harsh working conditions, where a union is needed to protect its members. Rather it was an issue of union members caught abusing the public purse they are paid with. How does a union find the arrogance to threaten an elected member of government to stop raising questions regarding information brought to him by members of the public?

A letter sent to the councillor by the Region's CAO has this to say, “I've also received correspondence from CUPE 1287 leaders who have demanded that we take whatever action necessary to ensure that inappropriate behaviour towards their members ceases immediately.” CUPE 1287 leaders, and Shawn Wilson who is the President of CUPE 1287, had demanded, though they had not investigated the allegations by the public. No comment has been forthcoming on this from CUPE senior management.

Shawn Wilson has been president of CUPE 1287 now for some four years and active in his Local for over ten years. Shawn Wilson is also an elected councillor for the City of Thorold. Now that's an eyebrow lifter. Here we have a president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees who in effect is also an elected representative of the body who employs CUPE members, his own Local's members. If this does not have the stench of conflict of interest than what could. This has been taken from “Our members have campaigned during municipal and school board elections for candidates taking progressive positions, traditionally supported the NDP federally and provincially.”

How can it be that the union president, of the union that supplies all the employees to the municipality, is also the one who in effect is the employer of those union members. In addition to this Shawn Wilson as the President of CUPE 1287 had to of been, one would think, the signature on the “correspondence from CUPE 1287 leaders who have demanded...” A municipality employs CUPE members, it does not have CAW nor the printers union or any other union members. The president of the union that supplies all the employees cannot sit on  council that makes decisions that may affect those union members. It is a conflict of interest and cannot be permitted, nor would it anywhere else.

CUPE was formed in 1963 by merging the National Union of Public Employees (NUPE) and the National Union of Public Service Employees (NUPSE) forming what is Canada's largest union representing over 615,000 members. It has a decentralized structure in which each Local elects its own executive, sets its own dues, conducts its own bargaining and strike votes. So is Shawn Wilson then part of the new strategy, to infiltrate the employer base for its own union members? This may sound wild but the sheer enormity of the question regarding the impropriety of conflict of interest remains unanswered, in light of the threat sent to a regional councillor elected by the people only adds a more serious twist to the whole mess.

Still there will be those who will sing the praises of CUPE and unions in general, considering its blasphemy to raise such questions. But what happens when a union member uses his powers of authority to threaten and harass a member of the public? Should the union leaders investigate the issue, in particular when hard evidence is provided? Or should a union act like nothing more than a thug and issue threats?

A building inspector for the City of St. Catharines had issued an 'unsafe house order' without an inspection. Mind you this is a building inspector who did not inspect and when asked to inspect refused to do so and was recorded. The title of his position of building inspector brings forth the expectation that he would inspect buildings before making any decisions. This building inspector is also a member of CUPE as all employees for a municipality are. After all it is the Canadian Union of Public Employees and a building inspector is a public employee employed by a municipality paid with public money. All of these points are facts, no possible denial and all documented.

Shawn Wilson as President of CUPE 1287 was sent all the details on February 2nd 2012, not a word of reply has been received from him. Not surprising after examining the potential conflict of interest against Shawn Wilson. Yet no one else has bothered to respond from the Local either. In light of the information regarding CUPE's decentralized form of governance somewhat surprising. So all the details were sent to the CUPE National's President Fred Hahn.

A letter was sent dated February 21st 2012 to Mr. Hahn providing all the details and it included a copy of the voice recording of the building inspector. This letter was sent out in clear English, the language of the Realm and impossible to misconstrue, the facts set out. A response came from President Fred Hahn dated February 27th 2012. In this response Hahn states, “CUPE National works directly to address the types of issues you have raised in your correspondence, so I have forwarded your correspondence to Brian Atkinson National's Ontario Regional Director. I am sure that you will be hearing from him at his earliest opportunity.”

That of course did not happen, I did not hear from Atkinson and made several attempts to call Hahn's assistant Stephanie Malinsky. Finally on March 28th I wrote again to Fred Hahn, his response dated April 4th 2012 was incredible. CUPE President Fred Hahn provided statements that were proof of intentional lies or that he truly has serious problems with comprehending the English language. True Hahn has a university degree from the University of Toronto and
his work in social services would require a degree of listening skills. His response of April 4th then is indeed one that proves the opposite.

My response to Hahn dated April 11th naturally has not brought any further letters in reply, that is not surprising. 

Hahn in fact makes it clear he lied that Atkinson would indeed be contacting me. Paragraph one of the April 4th fun-fest as I call it proves that Hahn lied, and they are his own words. Hahn's words were empty, hollow and stupid. He speaks of Shawn Wilson's “dedication to making the lives of the people of Niagara better,” I guess Hahn needs a map of Niagara to look at the picture. The individual who wrote Shawn Wilson who was threatened and harassed by a CUPE member lives in Niagara. That regional councillor who was threatened by Shawn Wilson's CUPE 1287 in their self-inflated arrogance threatened an elected government, it was the Regional Municipality of Niagara that was threatened. Finally those CUPE members who were in fact cheating on the public purse that Shawn Wilson threatened an elected government and elected councillor over, well they were from Niagara. I get it now, that is who Shawn Wilson and CUPE are only dedicated to make the lives better for in Niagara. The hypocrisy and lies in Fred Hahn's letter are astounding.

President of CUPE Fred Hahn obviously knew that Brian Atkinson National's Ontario Regional Director would not have any intention in contacting me, yet he put it in writing and signed it. Then he later states in another letter again signed that the information was passed on to “appropriate people” as “points.” Hahn confirmed now his own intentional lie. In Hahn's biography ( it states that he is committed to social unionism, what does that mean? Is it a new term for the new era describing socialism? Does it mean that Hahn stands for the common man, then I would ask what is Hahn's salary in comparison to the common man who pays his dues.

These actions by CUPE, Canada's biggest union, do not stand alone but are a part of an overall question as to what is the true role of unionism today. CUPE has had a member masquerading in a position that gives his ego power to act like a thug and CUPE has shielded and protected him. CUPE itself has acted no less a thug and threatened in arrogance an elected government and elected councillor, not in the protection of members' work conditions or wages, but in an attempt to ensure that no one questions those workers' abuse of the public purse. Is it unfair to raise questions of conflict of interest, hypocrisy and lies under such circumstances with hard evidence to prove the facts raised to be true.

My father came from a country where freedom and workers' rights did not exist and he fully believed in the doctrines the unions pushed. He even believed in the NDP and in particular Bob Rae, now look at him a semi-leader of a party interested in legalizing marijuana. Union leaders sit on massive salaries and have the arrogance to threaten elected members of government to cover-up members' abuse of public money.

Fred Hahn sent a letter that could only be thought of as ludicrous in its content. He proved with his own hand that he lied. Fred Hahn is a President of CUPE! For me to publish a copy of my letter to Hahn of February 28th would only be of greater public embarrassment for Hahn. Still Hahn has it and he knows he lied the only question is why? Shawn Wilson on the other hand, (Il Duce) of CUPE 1287 should be looked at by the Minister for Municipal Affairs. He has serious issues to answer in regards to conflict of interest. Hahn refers to him as a shining light standing for the people of Niagara. But then we now know Hahn is capable of a lie and has proven it himself. It was Shawn Wilson's CUPE Local 1287 that threatened an elected councillor. I guess in Hahn's words that's how Shawn Wilson dedicates his life to make the “lives of the people of Niagara better.” Wilson picks up a pretty salary as the President (Il Duce) of CUPE Local 1287 and public money as a city councillor. I love CUPE's system of presidents everywhere, there are so many that it makes one think of a banana republic. O.K. I know it's called an 'extremely decentralized' structure but when you have so many chiefs how is the pow-wow conducted quietly?

Sarcasm aside it is a question that many of the hard-liners in the union movement or socialists will not like, but what good are unions today. What are their true benefit? A world economy flipping backwards and forwards with recent examples that are not flattering such as the last postal strike or the problems at Caterpillar. After all there are those of us who question the point of the Monarchy in our society, why can't we question unionism.

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