The News Rundown
- Last week we talked about the premier’s meeting which saw the battle lines drawn on the federal carbon tax.
- The provinces that currently support that plan are: Alberta, BC, Quebec, and Nova Scotia.
- It’s within the realm of possibility that Alberta and Quebec will ultimately switch to the no side should their governments change next year and later this year respectively.
- We saw the alliance form between Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe and Ontario Premier Doug Ford.
- Following the meeting Angus Reid, a national polling firm was in the field.. what’d they find?
- Sentiment vs. voting intention polls
- 61% of Albertans oppose a carbon tax.
- Overall, 71% of Albertans say the province should have the final say on a carbon tax, 82% in Saskatchewan say the asme thing, while 64% in Ontario and 57% in BC agree with that sentiment.
- Nation wide, only 36% of those surveyed want the federal government to have final say.
- Where it gets more interesting is that even those who identify as Federal Liberal supporters are almost split (52/48) on who should have the final say.
- The news gets worse for the federal carbon tax plan in that 72% of all Canadians support Saskatchewan’s plan to challenge the carbon tax in court. The lowest support comes from Quebec at 65%.
- When Quebec agrees that a Liberal government is doing something wrong, there’s an issue.
- The top voted comments on the CBC story for this call the carbon tax a “scam” and express genuine frustration at the tax burden being felt in Canada today.
- Sentiment vs. voting intention polls
- We’re talking about this because most of the talk from the premiers meeting focused around alcohol and the NAFTA negotiations that do ultimately need to happen with the USA.
- Finally we’ll just leave this talk on carbon by saying that 57% of Canadians polled are either not very confident or not at all confident that Canada will reach the paris climate accord goals.
- Canada agreed to reduce emissions to 30% below 2005 levels by 2030.
- According to the Climate Action Tracker (an independent scientific analysis produced by three research organizations) the emissions of China and India continue to tick up.
- Justin Trudeau tried to get India to sign on but was unsuccessful.
- What’s more, in 2015 the Prime Minister promised $2.65b into emissions reduction projects for developing countries.
- That is of course money that could be used at home to reach our reduction targets or spent on other services.
- With the general sentiment around the Paris Accord and China and India, it’s no wonder we see Canadians souring on this government’s carbon tax plan.
The Firing Line
- Last Sunday 15 people were shot on Toronto Danforth in the city’s Greektown neighbourhood.
- A shooter made his way down the road firing into restaurants with a hand gun.
- The targets appeared to be random but more on that later.
- 8 women and 7 men were shot. Of those there were two fatalities: an 18 year old woman and 10 year old girl.
- The 18 year old woman was later identified as Reese Fallon while the 10 year old was identified as Julianna Kozis.
- Other victims included Danielle Kane who as a nursing student ran to help those already under fire, instead she was shot having a bullet enter her T11 vertebra piercing her stomach and diaphragm. She may never walk again.
- After the initial shock of the attack wore off talk turned to the shooter.
- The talk moved from the act to victims to gun control to mental health. Almost as quick as that sentence was said.
- The finger was initially pointed that the gun came from the United States! This would later be proven tangentially true.
- The gun was stolen from a Saskatoon break and enter in 2015 and likely came into Canada from the US.
- It was at this point a media story surfaced by City News in Toronto saying that 50% of guns used in crime were not from Canada.
- In reality of 783 trace requests made in 2014, just 229 could be traced and 50% of these traced were from Canada. That does not mean 50% of guns used for crime in Canada were not from Canada.
- So, Saskatoon you say?
- It was revealed that the shooter who killed himself, 29 year old Faisal Hussain, had a brother, Fahad.
- Fahad is currently in a drug induced coma and had dealings with gangs in Saskatoon.
- According to CTV Saskatoon he was released on $3,000 bail after being arrested when police stopped a rental car where they found $2,000 in cash as well as 26 pieces of crack cocaine packaged for trafficking.
- After being released on bail he was to live in an apartment in Toronto’s Thorncliffe Park neighbourhood where the shooter lived.
- In 2017 Fahad was to appear in a Saskatoon court for trial and was expected to plead guilty, instead he overdosed and charges against him were stayed. He remains in hospital today in that drug induced coma.
- While examining the apartment last weekend after the shooting police found ammunition and high capacity magazines for loading the guns in question.
- Police are also looking at a possible link between Fahad and the seizure of 30 guns in Pickering, Ontario last year.
- The Toronto police also said it looked as though he had experience with a weapon in terms of being able to walk, aim, and shoot at the same time.
- They stopped short at saying it looked as though he was a professional.
- At this point the conversation turned to the mental health of the Danforth shooter.
- The media even went as far as talking with one of the shooters former teachers at the Youth Skills Connection Program in Thorncliffe Ontario.
- He was described as “very disengaged, very quiet” and at the end of the program he began to open up and the teacher saw a “full transformation.”
- Following the shooting a “news release” was set out on behalf of the family.
- The release began with the family offering “deepest condolences to the families who are now suffering on account of our son’s horrific actions.”
- The narrative was set by the family saying, “our son had severe mental health challenges, struggling with psychosis and depression his entire life.”
- This was quite frankly weird, because why does a family need a publicist after their son engages in a shooting? Why not say nothing?
- The statement was crafted by Mohammed Hashim, Hashim is a full time organizer for the Toronto & York Region Labour Council.
- Hashim is also heavily involved with the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM).
- A bio on Hashim in the 2017 Muslim Awards of Excellence describes “his talking points and media advocacy [as] changing how Muslims are seen in the Canadian identity.”
- Hashim ultimately said that he was “just a friend” of the family and wasn’t their spokesperson and was just sharing their statement.
- On Wednesday ISIS took responsibility for the attack.
- This was reported by CBS, Reuters, the Jerusalem Post, the South China Morning Post, and the Toronto Sun.
- The Toronto police said that the shooter had looked up ISIS related materials on his computer but stopped short of making definitive links.
- Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale echoed this sentiment.
- None of the other major media outlets talked about this in Canada.
- Global wrote a piece about why ISIS claims should be questioned, and rightly so.
- The barbaric savages known as ISIS in the middle east have been beaten to a shell of what they used to be and are eager to claim any attack that can make their reach appear wider than it is.
- But the question remains, why not report on this, even if it couldn’t have been corroborated.
- You’ll note that I have only said the shooters name once. As with any attack we should not be glorifying murder and in this case suicide as well.
- Later this was even mentioned in the New York Times by Rukmini Callimachi, he says that the ISIS release implies self radicalization.
- I wish there were a way to know at this point but based on the public information we have, there’s no way of knowing.
- If guns and mental health can occupy the Canadian media narrative, it’s fair to say that some investigation on the ISIS angle is warranted.
- This is a tragedy like many others where media narrative shifts and shifts. So much so that the victims become forgotten in that narrative.
- It’s important that we remember at the end of the day 15 people were shot and 2 are dead. Those lives will never be the same.
- The media owes it to these people to examine every angle possible. Questions must be answered rather than pursuing an agenda:
- Was the gun indeed his brother’s obtained illegally?
- Did he have practice aiming and shooting while walking?
- If it was mental health, why wasn’t there an intervention sooner even though it appeared he made progress?
- Why would a representative of the NCCM issue a statement for the family?
- I hate giving credit to ISIS and further legitimizing the savages but was that angle pursued and examined effectively?
- We have many unanswered questions that probably won’t be answered as the media pursues narratives on guns and mental health.
Word of the Week
union | ˈyo͞onyən |
a club, society, or association formed by people with a common interest or purpose: members of the Students' Union.
• an organized association of workers formed to protect and further their rights and interests; a labor union: the National Farmers' Union.
How to Find Us
Episode Title: A Union of News
Teaser: BC government projects requiring unions inflates cost, Canadians are united against the federal government’s carbon tax, and Trudeau’s nanny receive a wage increase. Also, the full story and unanswered questions regarding the Toronto Danforth shooting.
Recorded Date: July 29, 2018
Release Date: July 30, 2018
Edit Notes: Nanny and drug induced coma break.
Podcast Summary Notes