Travel Blog

Liberals disrupt Canadian politics

January 31st, 2014 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

Justin Trudeau is certainly trying to disrupt Canadian politics and make a name for himself in the Canadian political scene. With his recent announcement kicking the liberal senators out of the Liberal caucus and declaring that they are independent from party lines has made a huge statement. As a result it will cause significant disruption in the Canadian political scene.

As this writer understands it, the liberal sensors are now independent from the liberal party. They cannot participate in the Liberal caucus meetings. They are free to vote in whatever manner they see fit with regards to legislation presented to the Senate.

Liberals disrupt Canadian politics

Why did Justin Trudeau take this approach what is behind his motivation for taking a big risk?

He is currently considered a lightweight political leader by the other parties. They have not taken him seriously up until now. This will certainly change their opinion regardless of whether the other parties agree or disagree with this approach. Secondly, the conservatives want to update the Senate and reform the Senate.

Reforming the Senate will take years of negotiation.This requires significant political discussion and debate. As a result in one stroke, Justin Trudeau has begun the process without any legal, political or discussion from the provinces.

The reform of the Canadian Senate has just begun. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next few months as the Conservatives the New Democrats respond. More to come.

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Canada – our winters

January 26th, 2014 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

Ottawa Ontario winter wonderland

Ottawa Ontario winter wonderland

We saw this particular poem on an email that someone sent to us and we thought that our readers might enjoy it. It is about Canada – our winters! Ottawa Ontario winter wonderland.

Canada – our winters

On the sixth day, God turned to the Archangel Gabriel and said, “Today I am going to create a land called Canada. It will be a land of outstanding natural beauty.

It shall have tall majestic mountains full of mountain goats and eagles,
beautiful sparkling lakes bountiful with bass and trout, forests full of elk and moose, high cliffs over-looking sandy
beaches with an abundance of sea life, and rivers stocked with

God continued, “I shall make the land rich in resources so as to make the inhabitants prosper, I shall call these inhabitants Canadians, and they shall be known as the most friendly people on the earth.”

“But Lord,” asked Gabriel, “don’t you think you are being too generous to > these Canadians??”

“Not really,” replied God.. “Just wait and see the winters I am going to give them!”

Canada – our winters

Although this is just a poem, sometimes our winters make us feel as if it were true in terms of the winter that God gave to us. The last one was particularly brutal and long. It seemed to go on for ever and it seemed that we got more snow than we ever did.

This is one of the reasons that many Canadians go south for the winter and do not come back until the snow is gone and the flowers have begun to grow. They just do not want to deal with the cold weather, the ice and the snow. We are among the Canadian snow birds that head south every year and we are going to continue doing so for as long as we can.

For more posts about Canadian politics,  weather etc., click here.

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Snow and Ice in the North

January 8th, 2014 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

snow and ice in the northUsually it is only Canada that gets a bad rap for cold weather, snow and ice in the north, storms, this year. Most of the US has heard about the cold Artic air that is coming down from Canada. But this year,  Jan 2014,  we are well into our 3rd storm of the season. It is dropping snow by the foot on places like Buffalo and Syracuse. The roads are bad everywhere and it is just plain cold. This is the main reason we leave to head south and become what has been affectionately called “snowbirds”. There are literally millions of people who head south every year for a week to as long as six months to get away from the snow, the ice and the cold.

Snow and Ice in the North

There are snow storms all the way down to Mississippi and Louisiana and across to Texas. These areas are not usually used to snow and really suffer when they have to deal with icy roads and do not have the salt and gravel to spread on the roads.

They also do not know how to drive their cars in icy conditions and there are many accidents as a result. We have had snow since the beginning of November in eastern Ontario and there is more coming.

In fact it is not likely to go away until well into late spring. What an awful winter to endure. It is time to head south and become a snow bird.

For more posts about Canadian politics and other stores about Canada, click here.

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Rob Ford In Over His Head

November 15th, 2013 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

What a train wreck Rob Ford is and it seems to get worse every day. Hopefully this sad story will end soon and hopefully he will get some help. Unfortunately his cancer has returned and he passed away. The rest of this article was written prior to his leaving politics to deal with his health issues.  It appears to me that this guy is in over his head in terms of his job and his problems. He does not know how to handle a situation that is getting steadily worse.

Rob Ford – Cannot Deal with Politicians

A friend of mind was contemplating running for office a few years ago. He called me to ask for my help, which I agreed to and he had to go to a few nominating meetings. He said he would get back to me in a few weeks. Well my friend is a pretty straight shooter. He does not have the gift that we seem to think that our politicians should have of being able to say a lot without actually saying anything.

The short story is that he called back in a few weeks. He told me that there was no way he could lie and promise things that there were impossible to deliver. He had not chance of being nominated, because many people will vote for promises they hope will happen and have literally no chance of ever being fulfilled.

Apparently Rob Ford has done some good things for Toronto. But he has lost his ability to govern and has to go. The train is already careening down the tracks and about to go off the rails!!!

For more posts about Canadian politics and other stores about Canada, click here.

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Indians Blockade of Canadian Border

May 18th, 2013 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

On Friday, May 17, 2013, there was a protest staged on Cornwall Island. This caused the closing of the bridge from Canada to the US at the Cornwall crossing and the Canadian Border. While we support the notion that free people can conduct peaceful protests to draw attention to whatever cause they have, there are a couple of things that we did not like about this situation besides the obvious inconvenience it caused us personally when we could not complete our trip.

First of all they are disrupting a major border crossing which means a lot of commerce etc is being delayed. It also increases cost to everyone, including the average consumer. Second, they are really trying to blackmail both governments into letting them do whatever it is they want to do. Many of them smuggle guns and cigarettes across the border. This is a rumor that everyone in Cornwall seems to know about.

Canadian Border

But what really got us upset is the poor organization of the Cornwall police and the blockades to the approach to the bridge. The street and all access points were closed well before the bridge. Even though there is just one lane along the approach route that you need to block access to.

Why not just block this entrance instead of forcing much of the traffic to go through the local mall and exit at the back of the mall! Why not put up signs well ahead of the blockade so that drivers could make appropriate decisions before getting stuck in traffic?

It seems that no one gives any thought to the convenience of the drivers in Cornwall. They really do not care about the tractor trailers and the tourists pulling campers and the RV’s.  This entire thing caused a major traffic headache which could have been managed much better. But of course that would require someone to think before they blocked a road!

For more posts about Canada, click here.

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Governments are Changing Retirement Plans

May 4th, 2013 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

Changing Retirement PlansGovernments are changing retirement plans all around the world or cash strapped and are looking for ways to reduce the cost of all of their expenses. This includes the cost of labor which has a payroll component as well as a benefits component. Benefits includes the amount of money they need to set aside to pay pensions in the future.

The private industry has already gone in this direction and governments will follow over the next 10 years. If you are already retired or planning to retire in the next 5 years, you are probably ok. However anyone with a longer retirement horizon, should take control of their future. Plan for a retirement with a reduced government pension.

They are reducing government pensions they are reducing benefits in terms of vision health and prescription coverage and people around the world should be ready for this when it comes time for the retirement. We all know people with great pensions and benefits packages after retirement. Over the next 20 years this is going to change drastically. Once the baby boomers are gone, rich pensions will no longer be the norm.

Changing Retirement Plans – Take Control of Your Future

Government employees who may be retiring 10, 15 or 20 years they find themselves without a retirement pension. We should be setting aside money now just in case so that they have the kind of retirement quality of life looking for.

This is something that all governments are looking at and to be better prepared everyone should be taking things into their own hands to avoid not having the quality of life that they would like to have When they retire.

We will have more on this subject in future posts.


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Canadian winter

December 31st, 2012 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

Canadian winter

Ottawa Ontario winter wonderland

Most Canadians enjoy the winter. They take advantage of various sports activities that are made available as a result of the snow and cold weather. For example, skating, skiing, snow shoeing, etc are just some of the sports activities that Canadians will engage in. Increasingly there are many people who head south for the winter to get away from the snow and the cold. These snow birds head down before Christmas and do not come back until the end of April to get away from the snow. They really do not want to see this stuff ever. Of late, our winters have not been that bad compared to 30 years ago. Yet more and more Canadians are headed south.

One person wrote this small poem and we decided to include it here for the enjoyment of readers who cannot get away or wonder why so many do go south for the winter.

It’s a Canadian winter

And the gentle breezes blow
Seventy miles an hour
At thirty-five below.

Oh, how I love Canada and the cold weather!

When the snow’s up to your butt
You take a breath of winter
And your nose gets frozen shut.

Yes, the weather here is wonderful

So I guess I’ll hang around
I could never leave Canada
I’m frozen to the friggin’ ground!

Why We leave Canada in the Winter

That’s why so many leave before it freezes. They just cannot handle the snow and ice. Having done this my self for the past 10 years I am in total agreement with all of the snow birds. I want to enjoy some of the snow and do go cross country skiing, but that is enough. We head out after New Years to Arizona and California to spend our time enjoying the sun!

The best part of winter is actually March and April. It is beginning to warm up and the snow is melting. Dec, Jan and Feb can be very cold and it is really the time to avoid being in the country.

For more posts about Canadian politics and other stores about Canada, click here.

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The Ontario Provincial Elections

September 5th, 2011 ernie Posted in Canada 2 Comments »

We are so afraid that the liberals will once again be voted back into power in the next Ontario Provincial Elections. They have been in power for many years now. The premier of Ontario has lied to us so many times that we take it for granted. We are not even surprised anymore. When he tells us that even though he was not going to raise taxes, he now will add more of a tax burden on to us.

Many people are voting with there feet and even though they may vote the liberals back into power, many are spending their money in the US were goods are much cheaper to start with and the tax is also much lower. They do not have an HST tax at 13%, not eve close. But I am getting off track here and need to focus on why we need a conservative government in place.
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Jack Laytons Legacy

August 23rd, 2011 ernie Posted in Canada No Comments »

Jack Laytons LegacyFirst of all, allow us to express our condolences to Jack Layton’s family.  This story is about Jack Laytons Legacy. This is a bittersweet time for them. Having been associated with cancer myself, no one wants to see their loved one die. However at the same time no one wants to see them suffer either. Especially when there is nothing further that can be done for them. The only treatment at that point is pain management usually through morphine or some similar drug.

Jack Layton worked until the end and strove to go out in a dignified manner with his place in history firmly in established. He accomplished a great deal for his party and for Canadians and no one can take that away from him. Jack devoted himself to his life’s work which was Canadian Politics and the role that the NDP would play on the national scene. He succeeded beyond all expectations and for that we have to take our hats off to this man.

Sure he made some mistakes along the way. We all do from time to time, but this is not the time to belabor those issues. Nor would it accomplish anything at all to list them here. We are not interested in that since they are past history. The real issue for all Canadians is what will his legacy be and how will it impact us?
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