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View Room Comments for Wednesday, Jan. 9 2013

Wednesday, January 09, 2013   by: The Soap BoxWelcome to the View Room. This editorial feature is for you to post comments. To comment on a specific news story please post your comment directly under the news story.
Note: Comments that appear on the site are not the opinion of If you see an abusive post, please click the link beside the post to report it.
fatafr 1/9/2013 3:28:36 AM Report

Canadians are decent people.
We deplore the Third World conditions on many native reserves and we are willing to spend billions of dollars, every year, to improve them. But we also want to know we’re getting value for our money.
That it isn’t disappearing down a black hole, while poverty, disease, illiteracy, unemployment, substance abuse and crime skyrocket on reserves.
In that context, no one expects any magic answers to come out of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s meeting with aboriginal leaders Friday, especially since it has been set up in a circus-like atmosphere caused by two events.

chief spence and her side kick think the audit that was just done on her reserve is a distraction to her laughable hunger strike. What should be happening is the RCMP should be hauling her derrier to RCMP Headquarters and interrogating her about the millions of taxpayer dollars she has funnelled into her stock purchases, land deals and off shore bank accounts. I can't believe natives, especially the ones on her reserve, aren't outraged and demanding answers from her. Or maybe they expect the federal government to hand out more tax dollars to make up for the slight shortfall spence has engineered.
Maybem,just maybe, it's time for the non-native Canadian Taxpayers to remain IDLE NO MORE.
Harper better stand his ground on Friday and remember who his supporters are because it's quite evident that the liberal and ndp mps are right out to lunch on this whole fiasco.

Jimssm 1/9/2013 6:48:57 AM Report

Mr. Fata...

Maybe you should worry about your own Chief Spence(s) before you start delving into the federal scene.

That's what we elected you for.
Grump 1/9/2013 6:57:01 AM Report

Good morning Frank, I have to agree with you there. This current system is not fair to First Nation members or the Canadian taxpayer. It would be a better system to pay the Chiefs a good salary to stay to hell away from the Band Office and hire decent managers to run their business. By the way what in the hell are you doing up at that time in the morning?
Right Winger 1/9/2013 7:25:57 AM Report

You know, it is sad what happened on the weekend on Lake George, and I offer sympathy to the families of these two individuals who each left a wife and combined 8 children.

How many more people have to die, how many wives must be made widows, how many children left fatherless will it take for people to stop this selfish utterly stupid behaviour?
tugboatnick 1/9/2013 7:31:25 AM Report

IT is really too bad, but one can not regulate stupidity!!!
Javaman 1/9/2013 7:37:34 AM Report

Health officials encourage us to get a flu shot. They set up a program whereby we can get the shot, easily??, at SOME local pharmacies. I have tried 3 times at my east end pharmacy and not been able to get the shot. 2 times they did not have the product because they said ALGOMA HEALTH had not provided them with the shots as requested. One one was available to give the shot. Is there anywhere you can walk in and get the shot?
Budster 1/9/2013 7:55:08 AM Report

The difference between stupidity and genius is genius has limits.
Budster 1/9/2013 7:57:51 AM Report

Since the serum for the flu shots are a controlled substance I believe you need an appointment so that enough will be made available for those that want it and not wasted because some don't want it.
skipper dave 1/9/2013 8:52:32 AM Report

Good morning sweet Soo!
I get discouraged when I read about the BETRAYAL of the ordinary everyday (like you and I) first nation citizen and duplicitous betrayal of us brothers and sisters by our own parliamentary representatives who have had and are fully aware of the systemic corruption that exists. So if you are for lynching the chief and her parasitic partner, please make room for the appropriate ministers and Mr harper. Crime - Betrayal of all the people.
This is not my quote but I love the message. What I love most about Canadians and what sets us apart from all other nations is how we collectively care for each other. We have a universal health care system that works in a fashion, We have in place programs to care for our elderly, our mentally ill, our homeless. We are generous to a fault and yes none of the programs are perfect but they are there. We complain about a lack of leadership yet we have had Tommy Douglas, Lester Pearson (nobel prize winner) and others too many to mention. Canada breeds the likes of Stephen Lewis who puts all of us to shame as he struggles with world aids. Have any of you had the privilege of listening to him or my personal favourite Senator Roman Dullard. I'll stack these guys up against the world's best and know the Canucks will win hands down. I'll conclude that I'm proud to be Canadian and there is just soooooo much that is right about us, just makes you want to shout but of course being canadian we are to subdued to do that. Have a good day I'm off to the SAH to start my shift. P.S. Saw the urologist yesterday for a bladder scope. Jeez I wish I was a woman.
Right Winger 1/9/2013 8:52:57 AM Report

You can probably call the flu hotline and get the appointment at the Cambrian Mall right away.
learningaswego 1/9/2013 9:12:33 AM Report

When an audit like that shows several huge one-time payments, like one of over $300,000 - to a "consultant", with no record of who it went to, where it went, what it was for, etc. then it absolutely calls out for investigation.
It certainly has the appearance that hundreds of thousands of dollars could have been funneled away somewhere. That money belongs to the people of Attiwapiskat, and to be used what it was intended for - improve housing, infrastructure, schools, etc.
I believe the auditors were probably very "gentle" in their critique, simply because it involved a FN, and a highly public one. If it was any other tax-funded institution, they probably would have been all over it, calling it what it really is.
highway1 1/9/2013 9:13:03 AM Report

"the Canadian tax payer"

You must be referring to first nations people!

This notion that FN's don't pay tax is a cheap lie that ignorant people without a legitimate argument resort to time and time again. It's silly.

The strengths that First Nations have are the Constitution, truth and the fact that history is on their side. These are the strengths that FN's are, and will be using until justice is served.
right wing 1/9/2013 9:28:11 AM Report

Debunking the myths.

Aboriginal people are subject to the same tax rules as other Canadian residents unless their income is eligible for the tax exemption under section 87 of the Indian Act.

Employment income is exempt from income tax under paragraph 81(1)(a) of the Income Tax Act and section 87 of the Indian Act only if the income is situated on a reserve.
right wing 1/9/2013 9:32:45 AM Report

Debunking the myths.

Goods and services acquired by Indians and Indian bands off a reserve in Ontario without the goods being delivered to a reserve or the services being performed in a reserve, will generally be subject to the HST as of July 1, 2010. However, the Government of Ontario has announced that, effective September 1, 2010, a point-of-sale relief equal to the 8% provincial part of the HST will be provided on qualifying supplies of property and services. In the interim, from July 1 to August 31, 2010, First Nations can receive refunds by submitting receipts to the Ontario Ministry of Revenue.

Source of both posts: CRA
Javaman 1/9/2013 9:40:32 AM Report

I called the flu appointment centre at Cambrian Mall...first appointment is Jan 17 if you want to call right away.
right wing 1/9/2013 9:41:47 AM Report

Debunking the myths.

People often comment that First Nations in Canada receive free Post Secondary Education. This is far from the truth. What is true is that First Nations can apply to their First Nation (or INAC depending on the First Nation and the student) for funding for some Post Secondary education. If approved students may receive tuition and books for their program for a limited time (usually 4 years for undergraduate studies) and may also get a small monthly student allowance. Not all First Nations students are approved for funding as there is a limited amount of money in the Post Secondary programs and there are some programs that are not funded at all.
The number of students funded by INAC is on average just over 20,000 a year with a substantial amount of potential students being denied funding.

Three should be enough for today.

skipper dave 1/9/2013 9:51:28 AM Report

Sincere thanks rw it's weird you and I being on the same page called compassion thru truth. Your screwing up your gruffy bear grouchy snugly image that I bet only the family sees. The last john Wayne in town!
right wing 1/9/2013 9:56:54 AM Report

skipper dave

The truth is the truth.
Ignorance to the facts is the reason there is so much bad blood between this nation and its peoples.
Criticism for mismanagement, no transparency and outright stealing on both sides is warranted.
False statements filled with hate that are based on myths are completely unnecessary.
Right Winger 1/9/2013 9:57:55 AM Report

Left leaning folks think conservatives don't have a social conscience. That is not true. I would actually say that we have a greater social conscience than Liberals. The differnce is that we want to help those who NEED our help by circumstance beyond their control. We don't want governemt wasting dollars on those who waste them themselves. I would be willing to pay the same taxes and maybe even more, if the dollars truly went to where they are NEEDED.
Left Winger 1/9/2013 10:10:30 AM Report

I've been following the threads on the Attawapiskat fiasco and finally reached out to a firend of mine who actually lives in Attawapiskat. And no she is not a family member of Chief Spence

I asked her where did she think the money went. She informed me that over the last 8 years there has been substantial work done in the community -they have done water and sewer expansions, new subdivision, new water plant, lagoon expansion, new housing and now they are building a new school. All of this work was performed by outside contractors.

There is no denying that their book keeping is rather questionable but she informs me that most members are behind their Chief and only they can be the ones to judge her. She wishes that the government would begin telling the truth rather than their standard half-truths just to enrage the public against Natives - divide and conquer strategy.

She also informed me that her community is very aware of what is being said about them and that their youth are rallying around the cause. They have high speed inrternet through out the community and have utilized the social media to showcase their plight of needing a new school for over 20 years and are now finally getting one.
right wing 1/9/2013 10:11:03 AM Report

Right Winger

That is where the transparency comes in.
There is far to much "whittling" down of that dollar, by the time it arrives where it is supposed to do some good it has become a nickel.
That 250,000 dollar combined income that Spence and her sidekick claim is highly earned is tax free as it is earned on the reserve.
A net income of that amount puts them in the 3.3% of combined Canadian family incomes of $250,000 and over.
right wing 1/9/2013 10:13:42 AM Report

Left Winger

Is the community in agreement with the wages earned by Chief Spence and council.
right wing 1/9/2013 10:18:42 AM Report

Substantial work done?
Attawapiskat came into the spotlight due to its impoverished conditions.
Which one is it?
The "substantial" work done all comes with a cost.
The cost of the actual work done over the eight years compared to the amount of money poured in by both the Federal government and De Beers Mining should tell the story.
That is the whole point here...truth and transparency.
Just Curious 1/9/2013 10:20:12 AM Report

Skipper,had 6 cystoscopies in 6 months in the Soo,had to be frozen for the last couple as it was getting way too painful,so much so that my hernia would pop out during the process. Came back down to london Health sciences centre where the original operation was performed and the surgeon said he needed to do one to see for himself what was going on.... I went into panic mode.. He couldn't understand why,said it shouldn't hurt. He then proceeded to give me one with no freezing,no gowns,no stirrups,not even in a special room. There was absolutely no discomfort and They let me watch the whole thing in living color.The equipment used in the Soo is so archaic it should be destroyed. The line in the Soo is about the size of a pencil(feels like a garden hose)and the one that was used down here is the size of the lead in a pencil. The difference is unbelieveable. No catheter,no Depends for a week,just get up pull your pants up,talk to the Dr for a few minutes and go home. Love it...:)
Left Winger 1/9/2013 10:34:36 AM Report

Didn't ask her if they were okay with the wage paid to the Chief. I do know that it is exspenive as he## up there to live - a three quarter bag of milk is $15.00, a 12pk of Kraft mac and cheese is $25.00 and the price of gas is over $2.00/litre. Don't ask how much building material costs because it's through the roof. Around trip plane ticket can run upwards of $3,500.00 if not more depending on destination.

I know $70,000.00 sounds like a lot but when you factor in the cost of living I think it's close to on par with other salaries paid locally. just ask Teflon Joe
Left Winger 1/9/2013 10:36:48 AM Report

I know there is a lot of talk about the de Beers money but I seem recall that the community had decided to invest the money and/or disburse some to community members.
Right Winger 1/9/2013 10:40:09 AM Report

Then don't live there.
Left Winger 1/9/2013 10:46:37 AM Report

Easily said RW'er but when you have a connection to the land since time immemorial and have buried loves there it is not so easy to walk away. but being an immigrant yourself I could see how you would think like that.

The government and big business would love to see them walk away from their traditional homeland - no need then to ask for permission to rape and pillage all of the resources and they could do it without having to be responsible to anyone for it.
Wisenheimer 1/9/2013 10:58:25 AM Report

Had a discussion over the holiday on the practice of using snow sleds as speed boats. Consensus was, that it is a bad idea.
bounder 1/9/2013 11:20:17 AM Report

OK one for the laugh'
Two blondes walk into a building,
you'd think one would have seen it.LMAO.
Pink Peony 1/9/2013 11:48:37 AM Report

You wouldn't find me in the bush with a bucksaw! I wouldn't mind being taught how to use one to cut up a log though. Now that would be a real workout!!

For firewood, I'd call Teen Challenge North. I get my firewood from there for the fire pit. Although it's split, I like to split some into smaller pieces.

I have a teddy bear! :D He doesn't expect anything of me, he doesn't hurt me or call me names...he's the best!!
Wicket 1/9/2013 11:54:23 AM Report

Left Winger, thanks for answering the questions that I had asked the other day.
What people don't understand is that the natives that live in remote communities in no way resemble their counterparts in locales that are close to and/or adjoining cities. There is no comparison to the life styles. Of course they choose to live there, born and raised, not many move away from what they know. Don't criticize the people who live off the land, work where there is work and are usually very quiet and reserved. Most of them do not make any demands of anyone.
Pink Peony 1/9/2013 12:01:32 PM Report

A few days ago, somebody posted about a video that was done about a year ago. A reporter (CBC I think) went up to Attawapiskat. I'm still trying to process that was sad! All the donations, heaters, clothing, etc. were still sitting in boxes in a room. One woman showed how there still was backed up sewage under her shack of a house. She said winter was good because it freezes and you can't smell it. When it's not frozen, she plugs in an air freshener. Another spoke of his frustrations and that he wanted to take his family from the reserve so they could follow their dreams and have good futures. If anything good comes for those living in slum like conditions on that reserve, that'll be great!
25miller 1/9/2013 12:02:06 PM Report

And people wonder why there are so many killings in the USA these days...Go figure.People think the laws are stupid in Canada..Read this one.
bounder 1/9/2013 12:06:09 PM Report

Show me the money,if you have been there or anywhere in the remote northern communities,you could not afford to stay there on your present salary.Last time I was in these areas,bread $6.00,milk $12.00, toothpaste $7.00,so on and so forth.A fully prepared meal may cost you $100.00 or more.One must live no matter the cost.
mallet 1/9/2013 12:09:17 PM Report

Left Winger...

Most of you know I am an Immigrant, who now have grandchildren born here, so lets get the fact that I want to see the land raped and pillaged out of the way, for I do not... Having said that I know that First Nations peoples do work and pay taxes just like any other person, so please do not tar me with that brush. HoweverI now come to this "Idle no More" issue regarding the Navigable lakes and Rivers part that seems to be most at the heart of the disputes. Having served on various local boards and commisions along the shores of Lake Superior I can understand how some may mis-interperate what is being tried to do. Are you aware that to do anything including repair, replacing, adding anything over a stream,river creek requires the person/town/city to do 4 (four) enviromental studies for the Federal, Provincial, MNR and Min of Oceans and Fisheries?? and that includes putting a dock in for your boat. The bill45 just tries to remove some of the burden of all these enquiries, the act was originally made when the main method of transportation was by Canoe, and navigable water was deemed to be any water that a Canoe would float in. Protect yes, but be reasonable.
T-rat 1/9/2013 12:25:15 PM Report

I have refrained from joining in the fray over aboriginal rights, treaties, the Indian Act, government all levels, including First Nations, because the very history of the issues going back hundreds of years is so complex. I feel totally inadequate in offering opinions.

But, when looking at only one tiny segment.....Attawapiskat, I think I can offer my two cents. I've been to Attawapiskat, and have stayed there for a couple of nights, and although that was many years ago, I don't see that things have changed much. It is a community of haves and have-nots. Too may residents live in the sub-standard conditions that we have seen shown on the news that supposedly represent housing, with no sanitation, no running water and very dangerous heating and electrical hookups. Personally, I could never understand why anybody would want to live in such a dismal place under such horrid conditions with no promise of their lives ever getting any better. And there's no attachment to the land that gives me a trap line or geese, or fish that would convince me that this is the way I want to live.

Consider this: you could be elderly, a single widow with kids, a young man with a family lacking any education beyond public school and no training that could lead to employment outside the community. You live in one of those uninsulated shacks awaiting the generosity of the band council to allot you modern housing with proper amenities. Do you think you are going to be openly and publicly critical of the chief or any member of an over-inflated band council? You're virtually a hostage in your own community and you can't leave.

I have never been a fan of Chief Theresa Spence. Her salary of $71,000/year as chief is modest but add the $850/day paid to her partner listed as a consultant to the band council and you have a joint income in excess of $250,000/year and drive around town in a Cadillac Escalade. She is not a leader with any proven abilities and her attempts to rally people with her fish broth hunger strike, and to divert attention from her own inadequacies as a leader of the people of Attawapiskat, is rather patethic.

There's so much more to say but when a rant starts to surface, it is time to stop.

fatafr 1/9/2013 12:42:14 PM Report

Golly gee wiz, my fellow Canadians, chief "please pass some more the soup" spence wants the meeting cancelled on Friday.

Is it possible that maybe, just maybe, spence has been left off the invitation list ?? Pray tell us. We really want to know (maybe I'll check in the National Enquirer for more information).

I believe the next time we see this broad it could be on "Saturday Night Live". She certainly offers a lot of fodder for a comedy skit or two.
Except for 1 thing, this broad is absolutely sickening, pathetic and an absolute embarrassment to her race and all Canadians.

Shame on this Conservative majority government for letting this gong show and fraudulent activity to go on for so long !!!!!!
Brianne 1/9/2013 1:01:25 PM Report

Breaking news

The First Nations have received the results of an independent audit of the Harper Conservative Government. Gross misuse of funds and questionable accounting has been found. Including shiftly misuse of housing funds by senators Patrick Brazeau, Mac Harb, and Mike DUffy, the shocking In and Out scandal, $50 million stolen from the G8 scandal for Gazebos, Peter Penashue and Dean Del Mastro's election finances, billions in F35 lies, and Harpers senior advisor's fraud charges.

Just to name a few
Wicket 1/9/2013 1:01:41 PM Report

bounder - I don't know what your point was in addressing me with your comments. Perhaps you should re-read mine. I am totally aware of the situation, know how much food and other items cost...I was not knocking them. Have more insight into their life style and situation due to some personal experience, than most of the posters.
Bad Dawg 1/9/2013 1:07:31 PM Report

I have a great respect for First Nation People. I think that every reserve is kinda like its own town or city. There are always left or right wingers on politics. There are people on Cheif Spences' reserve that are not happy with her decisions. We don't hold Hitlers actions against Germans or even hold Harper accountalbe for that matter. Our Gov't is not looking out for us only ITSELF!!

When its time to vote will our leaders remind us of their wrong-doing in their previous term?? I think not, I believe when the time comes our very own Premire will fall due to how he acted in Elliot Lake.

learningaswego 1/9/2013 1:07:58 PM Report

The government (this one, and all previous) cannot demand much from FN, because: a) if they do, the FN always claim "racism"; and b) the media always jumps on board with the ridiculous notion; and c) opposition politicians always jump on board with the pile-on.
Most Canadians are (or were) sympathetic to the FN, but is (or was) based mostly on public opinion, which was influenced greatly by what they read in the media; as opposed to what IS REALITY. Now that Canadians are actually getting a good look at REALITY, although they still are sympathetic to the plight of FN people (NOT the leaders), they also no longer buy the lie that it's all the "big, bad, government" fault, and the blame for the squalour can be clearly shared.
Canna D. Yenn 1/9/2013 1:16:59 PM Report

Some in this forum like to chat about how ‘their’ tax dollars are going to First Nations in general and Attawapiskat specifically.

As you are likely aware, there is no way that ‘your’ tax dollar is traceable in a system where all tax collected is first pooled then distributed through fractional dispensation. In other words, taxes collected from a number of sources, about half of which is from personal income tax, is distributed from a pool of all monies collected and not directly from individuals.

As we have been told numerous times, Attawapiskat’s audited statements are on-line, with records going back to 2005. It appears, again from certain contributors to this forum, that they will not be satisfied until they see an audited line-item analysis. This may be done in two ways: 1) get elected as the Chief or council member of the Attawapiskat FN, or 2) become an auditor with the firm who did the audit.

For the rest of us, we must rely on the public record or the posted data.

For those who wish to see more:

Taxation collection may be found at:

Transfer payment data may be found at:

Attawapiskat Audited Financial Statements may be found at:

Good luck.
bounder 1/9/2013 1:24:12 PM Report

I was agreeing with you,just a lot of people think they have a constant party going on up there.
Right Winger 1/9/2013 1:24:22 PM Report

Never mind all this, THE LEAFS FIRED BURKE!
T-rat 1/9/2013 1:25:58 PM Report

fatafr: I don't see any merit in your remarks, and certainly nothing constructive. If that was an attempt at humour, your boat never left the dock.

Brianne: good start on pointing to utterly gross and ongoing fiscal mismanagement and wasteful squandering of our tax dollars by morons in successive governments of all stripes!! Would take a space as big as the great outdoors to list them all but don't let that deter you. Good work!!
25miller 1/9/2013 1:36:45 PM Report

WOW fatafr ..You just described 80% of the City Council meetings.
We didn't want the water changed and ranted about it for over a year due to the smell..yet council voted in favor and force the tax payers to pay for the change over.Now they raise our water bills due to the maintenance the City owned PUC water system.Never mind forcing the tax payers to pay for the smart meters that we did not ask for and force us to pay double for our power now when we are a wake.Your no different then this Chief Frank.You might as well go smoke a peace pipe with her.
Left Winger 1/9/2013 1:57:47 PM Report

hmmm me thinks that fatafr and ace of bass are both trying to position themselvs for a run at a higher level political post by pretending to know what they are talking about - now that's a true politican.
Left Winger 1/9/2013 2:03:35 PM Report


It is not so much the fact that the navigatible waters act is changing. It's the fact that hidden with the omnibus bill is a piece pertaining to the selling of reserved lands.

As well the FN peoples believe it is their responsibility given to them by their Creator to look after the land and waters. Part of the Canadian constitution requires that they are consulted on matters pertaining to their traditional homelands which they were not. That's what has gotten them up in arms.
Pink Peony 1/9/2013 2:28:21 PM Report

Bill C-45 simply makes it easier for first nations to lease land

Here's a few paragraphs from the article.

"One of the most inflammatory, but inaccurate, claims coming from the Idle No More movement is that Bill C-45, the second budget implementation act, has deliberately made it easier to sell off Indian reserves."

"Many first nations have achieved economic success by leasing portions of their reserves for shopping centres, industrial parks, residential developments, casinos and anything else that might make money. Such projects create jobs and generate property tax revenues that first nations need to provide better services for their members."

"Yet, success has been hard won because of cumbersome procedures prescribed by the Indian Act. Designation of land for leasing had to be approved by majority vote in a referendum or band meeting for which the quorum was a majority of members – in other words, approval by a majority of a majority. If, as usually happened, the quorum was not achieved, the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs could authorize a second meeting dispensing with the quorum."

"First nations pursuing economic development have complained for years that the slowness of these procedures caused extra expense and sometimes even the loss of lucrative projects to competing jurisdictions able to move more quickly. Bill C-45 responded to these long-standing concerns by making two changes: (1) replacing approval by order-in-council by approval of the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs; and (2) replacing the requirement for a majority of a majority with simple majority rule – the same way the chiefs of first nations are elected."

"These amendments do not force first nations to do anything. They only make it easier for those who want to lease land to do so. And only leasing is involved; the rules governing sales of reserve land remain unchanged."
Wicket 1/9/2013 2:29:27 PM Report

bounder - ok, thanks, guess I misinterpreted your meaning...

Pink Peony - tried your cooking method at noon today. I have a flat top stove and the heat is still there for 1/2 hr after the burner is turned off. I put two inches of water in a large pot, brought it to a boil with lid on it, added dab of oil and 1 lb pasta. Put lid back on, turned burner off and in half an hour - perfectly cooked pasta..
TankGirl 1/9/2013 2:30:04 PM Report

Canna D Yenn - 6% of each tax payers paid dollar goes directly to First Nations. The link was posted yesterday. I can repost it for you if you like.

Also, the recent audit completed and released by CBC is a 3rd party audit that is not controlled by Government OR First Nations. They are THE largest and most reputable auditing firm and they have made it clear that over 80% of the funding transactions in Attawapiksat lack proper if any supporting documentation. Are you seriously trying to say they are lying???
ginjur 1/9/2013 2:33:09 PM Report

The true scandal of First Nations' funding -- not the Deloitte and Touche version!
mallet 1/9/2013 2:37:40 PM Report

Left Winger...

Now not knowing the individuals that were the base for the "Idle no More" crusade, from media reports this was the main reason for their dispute, but if it is another part of the bill then that is a different case altogether, and that part should be explained. One thing that the First Nations have to remember is that not all white or black or any other people are against them, most of the reserves that the general public runs through or along the edge seem fairly reasonable places to live, however it is the remote isolated ones that seem to have the most problems, and why that should be I do not know. From personal experience of living and working in remote areas I do understand that there are many items that are very expensive, however and here the european redneck in me comes to the surface and forgive me for asking, how the heck did these people survive before the whiteman came along?
Canna D. Yenn 1/9/2013 2:46:56 PM Report

TG... Nope... just more 'stuff'.
Nunavut 1/9/2013 2:56:16 PM Report

Leftwinger you are completely wrong about "selling off of land" but don't take my word for it here is what a BC native Chief stated "
Michael LeBourdais Chief of the Whispering Pines/Clinton Indian Band in a Globe commentary stated “I am the chief of the Whispering Pines/Clinton Indian Band. Our reserves are located near Kamloops and Clinton, B.C., and our community strongly supports the proposal for first nation property ownership legislation, a position which some in the Idle No More movement have criticized……Not owning our land has been an economic catastrophe. We have little of the equity in our homes that is needed to build wealth, gain access to credit and start businesses. We don’t have wealth to bequeath to the next generation so it can do better than us. We need the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and our band government to guarantee our mortgages………….The proposed property ownership legislation is both first nation-led and optional. It will give us hope that we can own our lands collectively and exercise our jurisdictions forever. We can provide ownership to our members so their lands and homes are as valuable as any other in the region. We can register our title in a modern system instead of the costly and unreliable deeds system we currently have.
Property rights will provide a cost-effective method to provide opportunity and increased wealth for my members, give them access to capital and reduce poverty. At a time of government fiscal restraint – and little prospect of constitutional change – this is an option that should be available to interested first nations.
After 140 years of the Indian Act, we are ready to take on this responsibility. We will work with our first nation institutions to provide government that raises and maintains property values, builds equity in our homes and creates strong self-sufficient communities. I am confident that, with legislation affirming our jurisdiction, our land will forever remain ours, just like Ontario remains Ontario even if I, a resident of British Columbia, buy land there.
I am not talking about granting us special rights. We want the same property rights that all other Canadians take for granted. We want ownership of our lands and recognition of our governments. After 140 years, we want to be a true partner in the Canadian federation." end of quotes

Great words from Mr. Loubardais. I'm glad that some native leaders can see the way out from the Indian Act mess. Hopefully he can convince other native leaders to pursue the same path.
But getting 600 chiefs to agree on anything is the problem !
Resident 1/9/2013 3:31:56 PM Report

Getting 600 people of any sort to agree on anything would be a miricle! Especially, can you imagine 600 members of government anywhere agreeing on anything? Too much greed in the way!
BIG BROTHER 1/9/2013 3:36:01 PM Report

Right on the point. This piling on to Chief Spence is mob mentality at its finest. One interesting comment asked, hypothetically, of course, 'why would anyone believe anything coming from the conservatives at this point in time. They have proven they are not worthy of our trust'.

At least the mocking, name calling, stereotyping has settled down and the discussion appears to be back on the topic, not individual smear, except, of course, for the usual suspects.
mallet 1/9/2013 3:37:24 PM Report


Never mind the 600, some of the boards I have sat on it's damn near impossible to get six to agree completely on one item let along two or three..
Big Bad Bob 1/9/2013 3:54:12 PM Report

The existing treaties between Canada and its First Nations were signed with the latter in de facto recognition of their status as sovereign entities; namely, not by conquest. In other words, no Canadian Colonel Custer ever existed, which in my view is to the honour of our Canadian ancestors and the British who formerly governed our country. As is the opinion of many others, no doubt including members of certain of our First Nations, I consider that times have changed and the provisions of certain of the treaties in question need to be updated. This can however be accomplished legally only through negotiations between the contracting parties; i.e. between Canada and representatives duly designated by the First Nations in question. Let us not, therefore, hear talk of imposing auditors or other controllers on the accounts of our First Nations without their consent. Otherwise, I will also expect Canada to impose similar auditors or other controllers on the accounts of all the third world countries which have been enjoying substantial foreign aid from Canada since the end of the Second World War. “Charity starts at home” as the old saying goes. The Indians and the Inuit were here before the French or the English or anybody else and they weren't "conquered" by any of them.
TankGirl 1/9/2013 3:54:24 PM Report


How can ANYONE support this lying, sneaky THIEF!

WAKE UP Aboriginal friends! Get RID OF THIS WASTE OF SPACE and get your people properly taken care of.
learningaswego 1/9/2013 4:03:25 PM Report

and DEMAND to know where the millions has gone, that was supposed to be used to help you and your community.
ginjur 1/9/2013 4:13:54 PM Report

‎"First, please note that $90 million is a deceptive number. It refers to federal funding received since Harper's government came into power in 2006. In the 2010-2011 fiscal year, Attawapiskat received $17.6 million in federal funds (PDF). The document linked to shows the breakdown of federal funds in case you wanted to know how much is allocated to things like medical transportation, education, maternal health care and so on.

Thus, $90 million refers to the total of an average of about $18 million per year in federal funding since 2006.

For more information: "
Wicket 1/9/2013 4:15:24 PM Report

Global News reported Tuesday that one of their television reporters and a photojournalist trying to visit Spence's isolated James Bay community was threatened with arrest and escorted back to the airport by the band police. Reporter Jennifer Tryon said the acting chief told her she had received a call from Spence, who wanted all the media to leave the community.
Only someone with something to hide would take this action.....
learningaswego 1/9/2013 4:23:45 PM Report

For a real eye-opener, check out some of the transactions noted in the Deloitte independent audit. Huge single payments - some of more than 2 and 3 HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS, with NO record of why, where, to whom it went.

That money belongs to the residents of Attiwapiskat, and they would be right to demand answers.
Mr. Poster 1/9/2013 4:29:39 PM Report

Anyone surprised the SPENCE-HARPER meeting has "gone up in smoke"?
Canna D. Yenn 1/9/2013 4:51:06 PM Report

Anyone planning on attending the blockade, rally, march, or whatever descriptor is used for this type of demonstration this Friday PM on Queen St.?
Wicket 1/9/2013 5:06:48 PM Report

eight - for some levity today in this room... leads into.....
Wicket 1/9/2013 5:07:05 PM Report

Wicket 1/9/2013 5:07:42 PM Report

Now time to make supper, Greyhound game tonight...
BIG BROTHER 1/9/2013 5:54:08 PM Report

You have hit the 'nail on the head' once again Ginsur. Thanks for the link. I hope others take the time to read at least some of it. It does help explain much about where the dollars went. Don't expect many to understand though. It is a very complex situation and most buy into the soundbites of propaganda, of which Harper and Co. are experts.
right wing 1/9/2013 6:54:23 PM Report

Give me a break Big Bro...your weak attempt at yet another Harper hating party is just that...weak, not to mention pathetic.
Chief Spence has been exposed for what she is, nothing more, nothing less.
Now she is refusing to go to the meeting.
All that good fish broth and vitamins gone to waste.
right wing 1/9/2013 6:59:12 PM Report

Left Winger

The location of Attawapiskat is on what originally was a seasonal hunting and fishing grounds.
Even the First Nations forefathers knew that it was not a smart location to be used for year round purposes.
When the natives started to build a settlement there is was against all sound advice due to the limiting year round access.
They did it anyway.
Another site was offered on the other side of the river and further down James Bay which has year round road access.
I guess it made to much sense.
Now the problems of living costs and employment are supposed to be solved?
By whom?
BIG BROTHER 1/9/2013 7:09:20 PM Report

Are you aware that the audit was leaked to the press! Who would have had anything to gain as a result of that. Hmmm!!

Is anyone aware that the Auditor General has also done annual audits? She made recommendations, not just accusations.

Have you read any of Ginsur's links? Appears the answer to that is a resounding 'no', based on your response!

The GG can't make it to the meeting; why bother meeting with Harper? The GG represents the Crown and must sign all bills into law. The Indian Act was created by the Crown. In this instance, he may have to make a decision on something, not just rubber stamp another bill.

Too complex to reduce to soundbites.
steelworker 1/9/2013 7:10:09 PM Report

$300,000 will buy you a lot of fish broth. A spokesman for Spence said she will not attend the meeting on Friday because she got a KFC bucket stuck on her head.
TankGirl 1/9/2013 7:15:30 PM Report

BB - it's very obvious to everyone that it was leaked intentionally and with good timing. The chief has had this audit in her hands since August and yet, not a word. She had her chance to come forward and yet chose not to tell her people about it at all. The fact this very important and telling audit was saved for the right moment and released does not make it false. Prove it wrong.
TankGirl 1/9/2013 7:19:25 PM Report

Oh and, the AG is not there to solve anything - just point out the obvious and let the right people fix it.

Last, Spence demanded to meet with Harper and she got it. Now she flakes out and states its because the bill won't be signed on the spot in the absence of the GG. Excuses and smoke screens to hide her lies and mismanagement.

Why do you support this woman? How can up I not see the people of Atta deserve a true leader who is honest and respects their people?? It's mind boggling.
TankGirl 1/9/2013 7:21:00 PM Report can you not see...
Wisenheimer 1/9/2013 7:37:27 PM Report

For the younger "Idle no more" participants, I notice help wanted signs at Agero and other local establishments. Might want to drop off a resume, get a job and nip that idleness in the bud.
BIG BROTHER 1/9/2013 7:38:21 PM Report

Tank Girl,
The AG is not there to solve anything...absolutely correct. She made recommendations which were ignored!!

Delloite and Touche do not make recommendations. They just check the books. Much of that money claimed to be sent to the Reserve in Atta is government administrative money, consumed by civil servants doing their respective jobs, yet considered part of the money sent. It is part of the cost of just doing the governments business.

Have you read the links provided by Ginsur. Take a may be surprised. They explain a lot of what many on here are complaining nauseam...

300 grand builds one very average house up there. What can't you see??
flyhawk25 1/9/2013 7:40:01 PM Report

Two points...
The first is that right wing is correct in his history of Attiwapiskat.
I have a friend who is a local contractor here and he worked there and told me about just that many years ago.
The second is an opinion.
Chief Spence played right into the media trap set by the federal government over her 'hunger strike'.
Two weeks ago I was sympathetic to her fight for the plight of the FN people she represents.
I still am.
But as this unfolds I'm afraid she has lost me.
It may be 'optics' but as well educated as she might be she failed to control the whole message.
If she wants to become this new century's Canadian Joan of Arc she needs a better media consultant and media guru.
Never forget - the winners get to write the history.
Right now she is not winning the battle of public opinion.
steelworker 1/9/2013 7:55:09 PM Report

...more like Joan of Golden Arches.
Grump 1/9/2013 7:55:49 PM Report

Good evening Fly. Isn't that C. Louis a pistol? I leads one to believe there is hope out there somewhere.
ginjur 1/9/2013 8:06:15 PM Report

Follow the link...Worth reading if you REALLY want to know the facts of First Nation funding.... The Auditor General reveals real problems inherent in the system.

The true scandal of First Nations' funding -- not the Deloitte and Touche version!
sweetc 1/9/2013 8:49:10 PM Report

any ice fishermen out there know how the ice is at Pine Island?
Jimssm 1/9/2013 8:52:18 PM Report


Maybe you should worry about your own city before you worry about Spence.

You even used the Tenaris Layoff story to comment on Spence, instead of the plight of the laid off workers.

How about some comments on the PUC's 10% /year increase forever for our crappy tasting water ?
Grace 1/9/2013 9:03:03 PM Report

Fatafr your comments and attitude to be frank, gives me the creeps.
Resident 1/9/2013 9:09:42 PM Report

Mallet: I believe you!!!
molder2 1/9/2013 9:09:55 PM Report

Hey-Dare...l`m surrounded! lmao...
nanag 1/9/2013 9:56:45 PM Report


you crack me up :)
ginjur 1/9/2013 10:33:11 PM Report

Bill C-45
Changes to Navigable Waters Protection Act dangerously undermine environmental protection, say critics.
This is key to the Idle No More Movement

Check out

TFinn 1/9/2013 11:34:33 PM Report

Something is very wrong to let someone blackmail our government ..anyone else would be arrested and investigated with zeal.. It is blackmail … political blackmail, and all of the FN people will now suffer because of it. Spencer is only thinking of one person ..herself and now because of her antics has set the FN back …way back. I have no respect for people of any race to use underhanded tactics to get their own way. She is now in the spot light with accusations of misappropriating of funds that are meant to help not to be a slush fund for herself and relatives as she sees fit. I can only hope the government will address this as aggressive as they would if anyone tries to defraud the government. This will now give the Gov the power and excuse to shut down many of the funds, and make it very difficult on the FN people in the future to get any assistance. I am not a racist person of any sort , I just do not like people that have a sense of entitlement about everything in life. I hope the government is not racist either, and when they investigate and I hope they investigate this the same as if they were investigating any business or person or citizen that is suspect of any wrong doing. Karma is a bitch ...and now it may just bite the FN in the ass.
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