Friday, 30 November 2012

Dirty tricks?




Dear Readers,

I have presented the following article by JOAN BRYDEN in the Globe and Mail, verbatim to continue the discussion about the viability of pre-election polling. It has long been a bone of contention that these folks bring new meaning to the word 'shilling' but i'll leave my comment to the space provided at the bottom...as usual, there is also space for your comment!

Dirty tricks against Cotler trigger misconduct probe for Tory pollster

OTTAWA — The Canadian Press
The market research industry's watchdog is launching a full-blown investigation into a Conservative pollster involved in an alleged misinformation campaign against Liberal MP Irwin Cotler.

Brendan Wycks, executive director of The Marketing Research and Intelligence Association, said Tuesday the watchdog has received seven formal complaints of professional misconduct against Campaign Research Inc.

Campaign Research was behind a phone campaign last fall in Mr. Cotler's Montreal riding, in which constitutents complained they were falsely told their MP was about to or had resigned and that a by-election was imminent.

The company was given time to resolve the matter to complainants' satisfaction but was unable to do so.
As a result, the voluntary, self-regulatory MRIA is now striking a three-member complaints panel to investigate the matter more thoroughly. If Campaign Research is found to have violated the association's code of conduct, the company could face sanctions, ranging from a public reprimand to suspension or even expulsion from the MRIA.

The MRIA fears the allegations of dirty tricks by partisan pollsters and telemarketers is giving legitimate public opinion research a black eye. The association is so concerned that Mr. Wycks said it is updating its code of conduct to spell out that voter identification or partisan promotion cannot be conducted under the guise of market research.

It has also given itself more power to initiate investigations into unethical or unprofessional conduct by its members, rather than having to wait for someone to file a formal complaint.

“If you are to be a corporate research member of MRIA, you cannot be doing voter intention-slash-advocacy type calls under the name of a marketing research firm because that just tarnishes the image of the entire industry,” Mr. Wycks said in an interview.

“You can't do partisan stuff under the banner of a marketing research firm that is doing statistical, survey-based marketing research.”

He said the association's board has approved in principle adding an addendum to the code or an ancillary regulatory document to that effect.

“I can definitely say that this is something that will be an outcome of the current issues [involving]Campaign Research and the other firms that are not marketing research firms, they're on the periphery, but we're getting some of the negative spillover from some of their activities.”

Campaign Research has made no bones about its partisan motivation. Principal partner Nick Kouvalis has publicly boasted: “We're in the business of getting Conservatives elected and ending Liberal careers. We're good at it.”

To Mr. Wycks, that quote alone suggests “that type of firm is not the type of research agency that can and should belong to MRIA. So that is going to be sort of the crux of the complaint panel's deliberations.”
Aaron Wudrick, Campaign Research's general counsel, said he can't comment on the specifics of the confidential complaints. But he said the company responded “in good faith” and the majority of complainants rejected “our proposed resolution.”

He added that none of the complainants actually resides in Mr. Cotler's riding – “They all made their complaints based on media reports, not due to a firsthand experience with Campaign Research.”

my response......

For an industry beset with credibility issues that could make a used car salesman blush to feign indignation after fearing their image might have been further tarnished by an alleged misinformation event might just be construed as disingenuous by this industry self-policing effort. These folks have turned electioneering into a sport...and a very lucrative sport at that. Tinkering with our democratic process brings our system into disrepute and can harm everyone, including these pollsters. Independence of thought and deed is what separates informed reporting from fiction and that is why scrutiny by something a little more independent is required!. 

Friday, 16 November 2012

Wife feels sexually neglected?











Dear Reader,

I am bringing the following article, verbatim to enable discussion and debate about what too many (most?) baby boomers are dealing with today. My response is below and as always, I look forward to your comments...

 

Wife feels sexually neglected — but husband might be feeling scared

 

Image
by Ellie, the Toronto Star advice columnist,

Q: I’ve been married for 26 years. I’m not bad looking because I’m a beautician and know how to take care of myself. I also work out in the gym and don’t feel ashamed of my body. I feel that my husband has lost interest in me.

We’re having sex only once a week, and when we do it last only five or 10 minutes. Once in a month or two, there might be more sex, and longer. He’s 53 and uses some methods to stay with it for longer, but only when it suits him. When we sleep together, he never touches me and I always just see his back.
What is wrong? I’m tired of always making the first step toward having sex......Feeling Neglected

A: While you’re feeling overlooked he may be feeling awkward, embarrassed or even scared. Men of his age sometimes find a change in their sexual stamina. Some develop erectile dysfunction.
This is common, but many men don’t realize this or that there are treatments for it, so they just back off sex as much as possible.

It’s unfortunate for any partner and could be unhealthy for your husband, as any change such as this calls for a medical checkup to ensure there’s no health issue involved. You should also be aware that studies in the United States, for example, find that for the majority of couples married for over ten years, once-weekly sex is most common.

However, since it’s a change for you two, you need to find out why. And it has nothing to do with your looks or figure. Even if there’s no health factor, he’s less comfortable with his own sexual image, not yours.

So start boosting him as the man you love, without pressuring him for intercourse. Cuddle, stroke, let him talk about whatever is on his mind. When you “see his back” in bed, touch him, fondle him and say loving things. It’s a proven start.

my response....



Granted, I may be justifiably accused of having a decidedly one-sided point of view, the fact remains that women draw their strength from men and give it back again! Men, by our nature absorb the pressures and sometimes, should the pressure get to be too great at any particular time, it can be wise for the women in our lives to appreciate the situation....and work with it! As long as there is good will on both sides, anything is possible! I'm sure their husbands would appreciate a little consideration at these moments and maybe...just maybe, the couple could grow a little closer together? Just a thought!

.............................................30...............................................

I Shall Not Hate!

Dear Readers,

This morning, I provide two articles verbatim...the first of one young lady's attempt to draw sides together and the second, the situation on the ground today in the middle east. In my response, I have illustrated my concern that until the folks who could make a difference actually stand up to the threat, this problem could get worse before it gets better. Once again, your emails and comments are appreciated!




israel demo 161112
Aseel Elbaba, 23, who works as a marketing sales manager and recently founded the LebUnity group to promote “the beautiful things” of her Lebanese culture, kept demonstrating between pro-Palestine and pro-Israel demonstrators outside the Consulate General of Israel in Toronto. 180 Bloor St. W. starting at 6 p.m. Thursday, holding her “I shall not hate” sign and demonstrating “all I care about is innocent lives being lost every day on both sides. For them to be heard, I think they should be on the same side.” Watched by teams of Toronto Police on either side of Bloor and Avenue Rd., the demo remained peaceful despite slogans on both sides being shouted. photo- Ian Robertson, Toronto Sun




Protest outside Israeli consulate in Toronto


By ,Toronto Sun
TORONTO - Pro-Palestinian and pro-Israel demonstrators waved flags and banners while yelling taunts and slogans Thursday across a busy mid-city street outside the Consulate General of Israel in Toronto.
“Stop the killing in Palestine” was repeated in a crowd of 300 on Bloor St.’s south side — including some with “Jews against Israel’s war crimes” signs — while 50 Jewish Defence League and Jewish Defence League (JDL) members across the street cried: “Stop the bombing, stop the hate.”

The pro-Palestinian rally, including Socialist and Ontario Coalition Against Poverty (OCAP) members, was held one day after Israeli’s military killed an Islamist leader, with Hamas firing reciprocal rockets.
Standing on a podium, a woman called for the “Israeli war machine” to end, adding the world “should not be slaves to the Holocaust.”

Across the street, Jewish Defense League spokesman Meir Weinstein said “we’re here to support Israel and we’re hoping the Israeli government dismantles Hamas once and for all,” calling many of the south-side critics “the far left, who never miss an opportunity to defend Hamas.”Separated by rows of Toronto Police officers, there were no physical clashes.

Repeatedly stopping mid-intersection to raise her “I shall not hate” sign, Aseel Elbaba appealed for peace on both sides. Elbaba, 23, a marketing sales manager of Lebanese descent, for innocent people on both sides to be heard and survive “they should be on the same side.”


Egypt PM to visit Gaza in support of Hamas
By REUTERS


Smoke rises in the northern Gaza Strip after an Israel air strike November 15, 2012. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun
GAZA - Egypt’s prime minister prepared to visit the Gaza Strip on Friday in an unprecedented display of solidarity with Hamas militants embroiled in a new escalation of conflict with Israel that risks spiralling into all-out war.

Two rockets from Gaza crashed near Tel Aviv in the first such attack on Israel’s commercial capital for 20 years. One fell into the Mediterranean Sea and the other in an uninhabited part of one of the Tel Aviv suburbs south of the city.

Two days of Israeli air strikes have killed 19 Palestinians, including seven militants and 12 civilians, among them six children and a pregnant woman. A Hamas rocket killed three Israelis in the town of Kiryat Malachi on Thursday morning.

The latest upsurge in a long-running conflict came on Wednesday when Israel killed Hamas’s military mastermind, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, in a precision air strike on his car. Israel then began shelling the coastal enclave from land, air and sea. Israel says its offensive responded to increasing missile salvoes from Gaza. Its bombing has not yet reached the saturation level seen before it last invaded Gaza in 2008, but Israeli officials have said a ground assault remains possible.

The Gaza conflagration has stoked the flames of a Middle East ablaze with two years of Arab popular revolution and a civil war in Syria that threatens to spread further afield. Israeli warplanes bombed targets in and around Gaza City, rattling tall buildings. In a hint of escalation, the spokesman for Israel’s military said it had received the green light to call in up to 30,000 reserve troops.

Egypt’s new Islamist President, Mohamed Mursi, viewed by Hamas as a protector, led a chorus of denunciation of the Israeli strikes by allies of the Palestinians. Mursi’s prime minister, Hisham Kandil, is to visit Gaza on Friday with other Egyptian officials in a show of support for the enclave, an Egyptian cabinet official said. Israel promised that the delegation would come to no harm.

An Egyptian government source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said officials accompanying Kandil would explore the possibility of brokering a ceasefire. Mursi faces domestic pressure to act tough. But Egypt gets $1.3 billion a year in U.S. military aid and looks to Washington for help with its ailing economy, constraining Mursi despite his need to show Egyptians that his policies differ from those of his U.S.-backed predecessor Hosni Mubarak.

Air raid sirens sent residents running for shelter in Tel Aviv, a Mediterranean city that has not been hit by a rocket since the 1991 Gulf War when it was targeted by Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
The Tel Aviv metropolitan area is home to more than 3 million people, more than 40 percent of Israel’s population. “This escalation will exact a price that the other side will have to pay,” Barak said in a television broadcast shortly after the strike.

But an Israeli cabinet statement on Wednesday spoke only of “improving” national security - acknowledgement that the Jewish state has no illusions about crushing the militants once and for all.
Speaking at the same time in Gaza, Hamas leader Haniyeh urged Egypt to do more to help the Palestinians.
“We call upon the brothers in Egypt to take the measures that will deter this enemy,” the Hamas prime minister said.

The resurgent conflict will be the biggest test yet of Mursi’s commitment to Egypt’s 1979 peace treaty with Israel, which the West views as the bedrock of Middle East peace. Cairo recalled its ambassador from Israel on Wednesday. Israel’s ambassador left Cairo on what was called a routine home visit; Israel said its embassy would remain open.

The Muslim Brotherhood, which brought Mursi to power in an election after the downfall of Hosni Mubarak, has called for a “Day of Rage” in Arab capitals on Friday. The Brotherhood is seen as the spiritual mentors of Hamas. The Israeli army said 300 targets were hit in Gaza, including more than 130 militant rocket launchers. It said more than 270 rockets had struck Israel since the start of the operation, with its Iron Dome interceptor system shooting down more than 130 rockets bound for residential areas.

Expecting days or more of fighting and almost inevitable civilian casualties, Israeli warplanes dropped leaflets in Gaza advising residents to stay away from Hamas and other militants.




                                                               Our Present Leadership!
 my response.....

Obama should support our ally as Israel attempts to defend herself from unprovoked attacks. Like England during WW2, Israel is the front and if Israel's allies will not assist in her defense, then who will! There have over 850 rockets aimed and fired at Israel so far this year...and this must stop. Imagine if Canada was lobbing rockets into Buffalo and Seattle...the Americans would be outraged!! American's would immediately tell us to either stop or they would come in here and stop it for us. This is precisely what is going on today in Israel.

                                             Ten Israelis Hurt in Rocket Attack in Beersheva!

Yesterday, Palestinians battered Israel with more than 200 rockets in the heaviest fighting in four years, killing three people as Israel pressed a punishing campaign of airstrikes on militant targets across the Gaza Strip. Three rockets targeted Tel Aviv, setting off air-raid sirens in bold attacks that led Israel to signal that a ground operation was imminent. At least 12 trucks were seen transporting tanks and armored personnel carriers, and a number of buses carrying soldiers arrived.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak is reported to have said that he has authorized the army to call up as many as 30,000 additional reservists for possible action. Fifteen Palestinians also have been killed in two days of shelling.


                                            Israeli police respond after rocket attack in Tel Aviv!



Israel and Hamas have largely observed an informal truce for the past four years. However, in the run up to the American election, the calm unraveled in a bout of rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes. The attacks intensified after Obama was re-elected.

The Palestinian Hamas, in Gaza, and in the West Bank, leave no doubt that they do not believe in Israel’s right to exist. They have never recognized Israel's right to exist. They are doing everything they can to create division, knowing that a majority in the United Nations are going to support the Palestinian cause.



                                                Winston Churchill...a leader among men




The free world, especially America, and Canada have been virtually alone in supporting Israel and these rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza are a test of whether the American President is willing to stand up for her allies, like Israel. Prime Minister Harper, to his credit is backing Israel's right to exist, with the support of a majority of Canadians. Former British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill was a man who refused to be pushed around...before and during WW2! I am hopeful that the American President will pass this test, but certainly if you look at his record over the past four years, he has been the weakest friend to Israel than Israel has ever had in the White House.

...... your emails and comments below are appreciated!


.................................30...................................
The United States should support Israel in any assault against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum charged on Thursday in an exclusive interview with Newsmax TV.

“We should support our ally in its ability to defend itself. Israel is defending itself against repeated attacks,” Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator and chairman of Patriot Voices, told Newsmax at Restoration Weekend 2012 in Palm Beach, Fla. “There have over 850 rockets fired this year.

“Imagine if Mexico was lobbing rockets into El Paso and Tucson. We would be outraged. We would immediately tell them to either stop or we are going to go into there and clear out those areas that are beyond government control – and do it for them. That is exactly what is going on in Israel.”

Earlier on Thursday, Palestinians battered Israel with more than 200 rockets in the heaviest fighting in four years, killing three people as Israel pressed a punishing campaign of airstrikes on militant targets across the Gaza Strip.

Three rockets targeted Tel Aviv, setting off air-raid sirens in bold attacks that led Israel to signal that a ground operation was imminent. At least 12 trucks were seen transporting tanks and armored personnel carriers, and a number of buses carrying soldiers arrived.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said he had authorized the army to call up as many as 30,000 additional reservists for possible action.

Fifteen Palestinians also have been killed in two days of shelling.

Israel and Hamas have largely observed an informal truce for the past four years. But in recent weeks, the calm unraveled in a bout of rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes.

“The Palestinian Hamas, in Gaza, and in the West Bank, they are very, very clear that they do not believe in Israel’s right to exist,” Santorum told Newsmax on Thursday. “They have never recognized their right to exist. They are doing everything they can to create tensions, knowing that the vast majority of the world is going to support the Palestinian cause, as they do in the United Nations.

“This is a test of whether this president, because America has been alone in the world in supporting Israel – post-election – is willing to stand up for Israel,” he added. “I am hopeful that the President will pass that test, but certainly if you look at his record over the past four years, he has been the weakest friend to Israel than Israel has ever had in the White House.”

Read Latest Breaking News from Newsmax.com http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/santorum-obama-support-israel/2012/11/15/id/464365?s=al&promo_code=10C1E-1#ixzz2COhJiG2p
The United States should support Israel in any assault against Hamas in the Gaza Strip, former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum charged on Thursday in an exclusive interview with Newsmax TV.

“We should support our ally in its ability to defend itself. Israel is defending itself against repeated attacks,” Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator and chairman of Patriot Voices, told Newsmax at Restoration Weekend 2012 in Palm Beach, Fla. “There have over 850 rockets fired this year.

“Imagine if Mexico was lobbing rockets into El Paso and Tucson. We would be outraged. We would immediately tell them to either stop or we are going to go into there and clear out those areas that are beyond government control – and do it for them. That is exactly what is going on in Israel.”

Earlier on Thursday, Palestinians battered Israel with more than 200 rockets in the heaviest fighting in four years, killing three people as Israel pressed a punishing campaign of airstrikes on militant targets across the Gaza Strip.

Three rockets targeted Tel Aviv, setting off air-raid sirens in bold attacks that led Israel to signal that a ground operation was imminent. At least 12 trucks were seen transporting tanks and armored personnel carriers, and a number of buses carrying soldiers arrived.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said he had authorized the army to call up as many as 30,000 additional reservists for possible action.

Fifteen Palestinians also have been killed in two days of shelling.

Israel and Hamas have largely observed an informal truce for the past four years. But in recent weeks, the calm unraveled in a bout of rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza and retaliatory Israeli airstrikes.

“The Palestinian Hamas, in Gaza, and in the West Bank, they are very, very clear that they do not believe in Israel’s right to exist,” Santorum told Newsmax on Thursday. “They have never recognized their right to exist. They are doing everything they can to create tensions, knowing that the vast majority of the world is going to support the Palestinian cause, as they do in the United Nations.

“This is a test of whether this president, because America has been alone in the world in supporting Israel – post-election – is willing to stand up for Israel,” he added. “I am hopeful that the President will pass that test, but certainly if you look at his record over the past four years, he has been the weakest friend to Israel than Israel has ever had in the White House.”

Read Latest Breaking News from Newsmax.com http://www.newsmax.com/Newsfront/santorum-obama-support-israel/2012/11/15/id/464365?s=al&promo_code=10C1E-1#ixzz2COhJiG2p

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Gone...but never to be forgotten!






                                 Wayne Goldthorpe, 1965

GOLDTHORPE, Wayne Kinkade - On Friday, November 9, 2012 at the age of 76. Husband of Marie for 51 years and father of Leslie, Andrea and the late Johanna. Loving brother of Louise, Dick (Eleanor), Olive (Reg), Georgina (Al) and Gord (Linda). Predeceased by brother Fred (Ruth). He will be remembered by his many nieces, nephews, family and friends. Wayne was a longtime employee of Bell Canada. He volunteered for many years with the Bell Pioneers helping with a summer camp for disabled children. He was also a Big Brother and an avid singer with the Invictones which entertained seniors and hospitals. Special remembrances from Brian and Debbie, Tim and Katy and their families. A Memorial Service will be held on Friday, November 16th at 2 p.m. at the R.S. Kane Funeral Home (6150 Yonge Street, at Goulding, south of Steeles). In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Bereaved Families of Ontario- Toronto, 80 Woodlawn Avenue East, Toronto, ON, M4T 1C1 or to a charity of your choice
                                     Brian Weller, 1965
I was Wayne's first little brother. Wayne came into my life when he was just 27 and I was just 13, one year after my Toronto ex-policeman father passed on. I recall my mother saying that every boy needs a positive male role model in their life and she put my name on the agency list of prospective little brothers. I also recall sitting in the hallway at Big Brother House on Jarvis Street in the summer of 1963, feeling very apprehensive when I heard a door opening and Wayne came bounding up the stairs, but when he looked at me with his big, warm smile. I just knew he was OK!
Some of our more memorable times together would include going to the Saturday evening stock car races at Pinecrest and other tracks in his little Corvair with some time spent in the pits afterwards with drivers that he knew, like Bell workmate, Howie Scannell. I also recall visits with his Mom and Dad, sisters and brothers. The Goldthorpe family, and the Collins family too, always made me feel welcome.
 

Having a Big Brother was such a positive experience for me that at 21, I became a Big Brother in Toronto to a fatherless boy. I even played on the Big Brother's Hockey team where we played in charity tournaments. For a time in the early 70's, Wayne and I were asked to assist at the Orientation meetings together where we would introduce the agency to prospective Big Brothers. 

                     Big Brother's Oshawa/Whitby Hockey team
In the mid-70's, we bought our home and moved our young family out of town. I became a Volunteer with Big Brothers Oshawa-Whitby where I was introduced to another fatherless boy. I organized the Big Brother's Oshawa/Whitby Hockey team for charity games against all-star teams like the CFTO Bassetthounds, starring Dave Duval. After me, Wayne had taken on another little brother, Tim and he and Marie were busy raising their three girls while Deb and I were busy raising our four but Wayne and I never stopped talking. He would tell me what his girls were doing, in school and then work. Wayne loved his girls! 
It has now been 49 years that I have known Wayne and our friendship endured, although things had changed. In the last few years, it was me who picked him up, taking him to events that he enjoyed, like seeing Merle Haggard in Rama, Argo football and Leann Rimes and....
                             Loretta Lynn at Massey Hall. 

In fact, when I took him to see Loretta a couple of months ago, he was really excited. Wayne told me that... "Now that Doo is gone. I'm next in line. I would love to go". Before the show, we went out for a coffee and a little 'red neck' chat, like we usually did. When I showed him an email that my sister sent, "You should never have read Ayn Rand in the first place......or listened to Wayne", well, he looked real proud and gave me his big smile!  And at the show, well Loretta sounded great and looked like a Goddess, all aglow, at least from we where were sitting!
I learned so much from Wayne. Wayne was my best man at my wedding 40 years ago. Wayne was always there for me! Wayne taught me the importance of making choices, and being responsible for the results for if you want to know the results of your choices, just look at your best friend in the mirror. What you see are the choices you have made. I’m going to miss Wayne. To paraphrase, 'a Heart is not known for how much you love but how much you are loved by others'! 


Wayne and Marie took a hurting 13 year old child into their hearts so many years ago and for that I will always be grateful. Magic happened when Wayne stooped to help this child in need! Every Fatherless boy needs a Big Brother. Wayne's caring made a huge difference in my life. In the immortal words of Pablo Casals, "The child must know that he is a miracle, that since the beginning of the world there hasn't been, and until the end of the world there will not be, another child like him." Wayne understood this!
I can’t remember everything that Wayne said. I can’t remember everything that Wayne did. But i’ll never forget how Wayne made me feel. Wayne made me feel special. Wayne gave me the most precious gift of all - his time! The world has lost a gentle man whose generosity, wicked sense of humour and strong character will live on in the memories of those of us who were lucky enough to spend some time with him.

Brian Weller,
November 15, 2012






the 60th anniversary of the double hanging in Toronto!



Dear Readers,

As we approach the 60th anniversary of the double hanging in Toronto on December 16, 1952 when Lennie Jackson and Steve Suchan, both members of the Boyd Gang were led from their cells to the gallows at the Don Jail, we remember Detective Sergeant Edmund Tong, 48 who was senselessly and callously murdered on a cold March 6, 1952 night.



                                       Front Page of the Toronto Star on September 8, 1952. 

My Dad, Detective Robert Weller was fond of telling me stories about his exploits when he was a member of the North Toronto Police Force, after his WW2 experience as a Pilot Officer with the RCAF and then with the Metropolitan Toronto Police Force, after amalgamation in 1957. He was especially fond of telling me about that notorious bad boy, Edwin Alonzo Boyd and Dad's part in capturing him. 

Dashing, daring and flamboyant, Edwin Alonzo Boyd and his gang burst onto the front pages of Toronto newspapers due to a series of well executed bank robberies and two breakouts from Toronto's infamous Don Jail. Boyd's swashbuckling style of hopping bank counters and lightning fast stick-ups electrified Toronto residents. Although their reign as Canada's most notorious crooks was relatively short, a mere 10 months for the actual gang, their escapades were the stuff that legends are made of. These guys were damn near local heros until two of the members shot down two detectives in cold blood, killing one. The gang consisted of four members, Edwin Boyd, Willie Jackson, Lennie Jackson and Valent Lesso (a.k.a.Steve Suchan). The two Jackson's were not related.

Boyd robbed his first bank in September of 1949. He plastered his face with makeup and stuffed his cheeks with cotton to disguise his appearance. He escaped with the loot even though the bank manager emptied his revolver at the fleeing robber. Boyd decided to see just how well his disguise had worked, so a day or two later, bold as brass, he walked into the same bank and changed a twenty dollar bill with the teller he'd robbed. He wasn't recognized, so he decided to hone his skills and become a full time bank robber.
                                      Mug Shots from the Globe and Mail on September 9, 1952

Boyd continued robbing banks, sometimes with his ex-jailguard partner, Howard Gault, sometimes solo. His solo efforts were not always successful. At one stick up the bank manager grabbed a gun from a desk drawer and popped off a few rounds at Boyd who returned fire with a couple of slugs himself. He had no choice but to turn tail and run, but this time without the loot. Another time, Boyd was chased in his stolen car by a bank employee, just barely escaping.

Finally his luck ran out. On his last attempt with Gault, everything went wrong, and even though Boyd got away, Gault didn't. Gault broke down under police questioning and spilled the beans. Soon the two of them were comfortably behind the soft iron bars of the Don Jail.

During this time there was another gang pulling off bank jobs in and around the city. They were more violent and carried heavy arms, including a sub-machine gun. They sometimes clubbed a bank employee over the head or fired their guns into the wall to get their point across. Two of the members of this gang were Steve Suchan, and Lennie Jackson. Suchan had avoided capture but Jackson wasn't so lucky. Steve Suchan was a multi-talented musician and probably the least likely bank robber in the history of Toronto. However, when he discovered he couldn't make a decent living as a violinist, he traded his violin in for a hand gun at pawn shop.

                                        Edwin Alonzo Boyd, under arrest

Lennie had had an accident while trying to hop a freight train some time earlier and now walked on a wooden foot. He had been working at a local bar where many of Toronto's more successful crooks hung out. He liked the cars these guys pulled up in and he liked the large amounts of cash they spread around even better. It didn't take Lennie long to make a career change and throw in with them. But, unfortunately for Lennie, he had been picked up by the police with some incriminating evidence and was lodged in the Don Jail when Boyd arrived.

Boyd ended up in the same area as Lennie and soon the two were comparing notes. Not long after this, another career criminal came into the cell block. He was born just across the Don River in the tough Toronto neighbourhood of Cabbagetown. His name was Willie Jackson and he had a long history of violent robberies in his resume. Willie was a joker and prankster and quickly became friends with the other two. He was also awaiting transfer to Kingston Penitentiary to serve seven years for robbery with violence.


                              Diagram of Escape Route from the Globe and Mail on September 9, 1952.

Not only did Lennie's wooden foot help him to walk upright, but it also came in handy to hide things, like hacksaw blades. So Lennie whipped out the blades and the three proceeded to saw the bars from the window leading outside. On November 4, 1951, the three slid through the opening and dropped to the prisoner's exercise yard below. Using some bedsheets that they had tied together, they then lassoed the top of the surrounding wall and climbed to freedom.

Steve Suchan had arranged a safe house in Cabbagetowwn that they could get to quickly and organize themselves. Later, Lennie Jackson and his girlfriend, Ann Roberts took off for Montreal with Suchan close behind. Boyd and Willie landed at Steve Suchan's parent's house in the west end.


                                       Reward for capture of the Boyd gang

Realizing they would need money to keep in hiding for a while, they robbed a nearby bank. A couple of weeks later they pulled off the biggest hold up in Toronto's history. After splitting up the money, Lennie and Suchan headed back to Montreal to lay low. Boyd and Willie hid out at Suchan's parent's home.

Steve Suchan's father came up with a great idea. He had a little hiding spot in the wall where the boy's could safely stash their money. The next morning the old man was gone and so was most of the loot. The whole gang then headed down to Montreal to hide out with wives and girlfriends in tow. Willie Jackson got busted for carrying a gun and was soon returned to Toronto where he recieved an additional two years for escaping custody. The rest of the gang also came back to Toronto, but under their own steam.

                                          
                                        Detective Sergeant Edmund Tong

On March 6, 1952, Detective Sergeant Edmund Tong and Sergeant Roy Perry pulled over a black Mercury Monarch automobile. It's unlikely that Tong knew the car contained Suchan and Lennie Jackson or he may have had his revolver at the ready. As Tong approached the suspect vehicle, he was hit by a .455 shell and fell to the ground in a heap.The fugitive's weapons were then aimed at the police car, which still held Perry, and they peppered the cruiser with bullets. Although Perry was wounded in the arm, he was very lucky to escape with his life. Tong was to die several days later, but not before naming his killer, Suchan.

The manhunt was on, and this time it would be relentless. Suchan and Jackson made it back to Montreal unscathed. Even though he had nothing to do with the shooting, Boyd felt the heat. His picture was once again plastered all over every Toronto newspaper. Up until this time, Boyd and his wife could at least leave their house and attend a movie after dark, but now they had to stay completely out of sight.


                                                the Boyd Gang arrested

Meanwhile, the next day in Montreal, the cops were in Suchan's apartment waiting for him return home. As he entered his place, he was told by police to freeze, he reached for his gun and was shot down before he could pull his gun out of his holster. A few days later, due to a neighbour's tip, the police moved in on Lennie's apartment. The second arrest didn't go as easily and a lengthy shootout ensued. Finally, with dozens of tear gas bombs burning his eyes and lungs, Lennie came out with a few bullet holes in him. The two survived their wounds and would soon be returned to Toronto.

Now Boyd was the only gang member left to be captured. Detective Dolph Payne had kept Boyd's brother under surveillance and discovered that he had rented a flat on Heath Street, but hadn't moved in yet. He secured a key to the back door from the owner. Payne then watched Boyd move into the flat from a neighbors house. Wanting to avoid a shootout, he waited until he was sure everyone was asleep. At the crack of dawn the police crept inside the house and captured Boyd and his wife while they were still in bed. Boyd's brother, who was sleeping in another room, was also apprehended. No shootouts, no struggle, not even a whimper.
 
 
                         Image of Police Constables (July 7, 1949). City of Toronto Archives

Boyd was once again a resident of the Don Jail and, much to his delight, the other three gang members soon showed up. Incredibly, the powers that be at the Don herded the four of them together into the otherwise empty deathrow cellblock.

Soon they had a piece of metal, a file and more hacksaw blades smuggled in to them. By eyeballing the guard's keys, they were able to file the metal piece down to something that resembled a key, but it actually worked. Now they could let themselves out of their cells for half an hour or so while all the guards were supervising the transfer of prisoners to Toronto's City Hall courthouse. It took several days to saw through the bars, but finally they were ready.

  
                                                    the Boyd Gang in Jail

Just before dawn on September 8, 1952, the four slipped out through the bars onto a wall that was conveniently located just outside the window. But to their horror, there was a cop stationed at the base of the wall. They lay on the top of the wall for a few minutes watching the cop and wondering what to do next. Suddenly, the officer walked across the laneway and knocked on a back door at the Riverdale hospital, as the door opened, he entered. It didn't take them long to drop to the ground and disappear down the hill into the wilds of the Don Valley which ran next to the jail.

Once again a huge manhunt ensued. The reward for information leading to the gang's capture hit twenty six thousand dollars causing hundreds of phone calls and letters to the police. Most of these leads proved false.

They holed up in an old barn on Heath Street, near Yonge and Sheppard. One at a time they'd leave the barn to scrounge up clothes and food. Rumor has it that Boyd actually spent a night with his wife on one of his excursions. But they tended to be a bit lax while hiding out here and were spotted many times. Most people thought they were just hobo's seeking shelter, but some became suspicious and called police.


On September 16, 1952, North Toronto Police and the OPP in a joint operation closed in on the barn and surprised the gang. They were apprehended without incident and finally returned to the familiar old Don Jail. They would never escape jail again.

Now it was time for the gang to go to trial. While Jackson had not fired a shot at Tong, he essentially confessed on the stand, which undoubtedly hurt their case. Otherwise, there was absolutely nothing exciting about the court cases, so I won't bore you with the details, just the outcome. Edwin Alonzo Boyd was found guilty of bank robbery and various other crimes, he received several concurrent life sentences. He was released on parole in 1966. He assumed a new legal identity and moved to western Canada.


                                          the Boyd Gang Wanted Poster 

Willie Jackson received a total of 31 years, which included the time that he had already been given in his previous convictions. He was also paroled in 1966. Both Lennie Jackson and Steve Suchan were sentenced to death by hanging for the murder of Detective Sergeant Edmund Tong.

Various other non members of the gang, which haven't been dealt with here, received jail time for crimes ranging from harboring a criminal to armed robbery. Justice was swift and sure back then. On December 16, 1952, with my Dad as a witness, Lennie Jackson and Steve Suchan were led from their cells to the gallows at the Don Jail. 

                                                
                                             the Don Jail in Toronto

At 12:14 AM, the hangman released the trap door and the duo fell through on the end of a hangman's rope. They were officially pronounced dead at 1:00 AM.

This closed the book on the Boyd Gang. Their escapades were soon forgotten by both the news media and the public. Toronto could now go back to being "Toronto The Good"
Edwin Alonzo Boyd died quietly at age 88 on May 17, 2002. He had been living under an assumed name in British Columbia since his release from prison. 

....................................................30....................................


the aftershock from the US election...









Dear Readers,

This morning, the verbatim article of choice is by DOUGLASS K. DANIEL, of the Associated Press, as published in the Toronto Star.




                                   In AP file photo, Mitt Romney told campaign donors 
                                   yesterday that President Barack Obama's "gifts" to 
                                 young voters, blacks and Hispanics won him the election.



Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney is telling top donors that President Barack Obama won re-election because of the “gifts” he had already provided to blacks, Hispanics and young voters and because of the president’s effort to paint Romney as anti-immigrant. “The president’s campaign, if you will, focused on giving targeted groups a big gift,” Romney said in a call to donors on Wednesday. “He made a big effort on small things.”

Romney said his campaign, in contrast, had been about “big issues for the whole country.” He said he faced problems as a candidate because he was “getting beat up” by the Obama campaign and that the debates allowed him to come back. In the call, Romney didn’t acknowledge any major missteps, such as his “47 per cent” remarks widely viewed as denigrating nearly half of Americans, his lack of support for the auto bailout, his call for illegal immigrants to “self-deport,” or his change in position on abortion, gun control and other issues. He also didn’t address the success or failure of the campaign’s strategy of focusing on the economy in the face of some improvement in employment and economic growth during the months leading up to Election Day.

Obama won the popular vote by about 3.5 million votes, and won the Electoral College by a wide margin, 332-206 electoral votes. Exit polls conducted for The Associated Press and television networks showed that Obama led Romney by 11 percentage points among women and won more than 7 of 10 Hispanic voters and 9 of 10 black voters. Romney called his loss to Obama a disappointing result that he and his team had not expected, but he said he believed his team had run a superb campaign. He said he was trying to turn his thoughts to the future, “but, frankly, we’re still so troubled by the past, it’s hard to put together our plans for the future.”

Romney’s finance team organized the call to donors. A person who listened to Romney’s call provided details about it to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the call was private. The Los Angeles Times first reported Romney’s remarks. Among the “gifts” Romney cited were free health care “in perpetuity,” which he said was highly motivational to black and Hispanic voters, as well as for voters making $25,000 to $35,000 a year.

Romney also said the administration’s promise to offer what he called “amnesty” to the children of illegal immigrants — what he termed “the so-called DREAM Act kids” — helped send Hispanics to the polls for Obama. Young voters, Romney said, were motivated by the administration’s plan for partial forgiveness of college loan interest and being able to remain on their parents’ health insurance plans. Young women had an additional incentive to vote for Obama because of free contraception coverage under the president’s health-care plan, he said.

“I’m very sorry that we didn’t win,” he told donors. “I know that you expected to win. We expected to win. We were disappointed; we hadn’t anticipated it.” Romney said he and his team were discussing how his donor group could remain connected and have an influence on the direction of the Republican Party and even the selection of a future nominee — “which, by the way, will not be me.” Asked about Romney’s remarks, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a potential contender for the GOP nomination in 2016, strongly condemned those in the GOP who classify voters based on income, race or age, and said the party cannot concede wide swaths of voters and expect to win elections.

“We have got to stop dividing the American voters,” Jindal told reporters in Las Vegas, where the Republican Governors Association was meeting. “We need to go after 100 per cent of the vote, not 53 per cent. We need to go after every single vote.”

my response......
                                                        The incumbent, President Obama

While the unforeseen re-election victory for the incumbent has been 'grist for the mill' amongst talking heads on both sides of the border for days now, it is interesting to note that Romney won the white vote with 59%, according to the exit polls while minorities and special interests coalesced around the incumbent in massive numbers. While many on the right are calling this a victory for illegal immigration, on the flip side, there are those on the left who insist that without the incumbent's perseverance there would be no impending health care solution in 2014 and this was achieved with absolutely no input and assistance from the GOP so i'll leave the last comment to you.....

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

How do you turn a large fortune into a small fortune?

Dear Readers,

The following article by Catherine Diamond appeared in the November 2012 issue of Labels and Labeling. As usual, my comments are below and we would welcome your comments at the space provided....





 
Precision Label and Tag
1250 Reid Street, Unit 9B
Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada L4B 1G3
905-764-3745 or 1-800-465-1522
www.precisionlabel.ca


Brian Weller is a practical man. After working as the sales manager at Nashua Canada, he started Precision Label and Tag (“from scratch”) on December 27, 1987 and set out to be a quick-order turnaround manufacturer of full color labels to selected clientele. He decided to focus on food, he says, because it’s an industry with staying power.

“As long as people are eating,” he says, “you’ll need food labels. The last thing you want to do is set yourself up as the best manufacturer of a Hula-Hoop.”

Precision Label and Tag is housed in a 3,500 square foot facility in Richmond Hill, ON, Canada. It is an efficient operation, with just six employees bringing in more than one million dollars in annual sales. Weller has been president since he established the company; his son, Rob, is vice president. In addition to its focus on food labels, Precision Label and Tag also manufacturers prime labels and custom printed packaging; pharmaceutical, medical and diagnostic heat seal lidding; instant redeemable coupons, chemical and hazardous materials identification; and temper evident seals, among others.

The company’s primary clients are major distributors and wholesalers who re-market Precision Label and Tag’s products across Canada and into the United States. Weller knew some of the company’s clients from his time at Nashua Canada. Others have been acquired through referrals. “We’re very careful who we take on as a customer because we want to be sure we can satisfy their needs,” Weller says.

Weller is as thoughtful about his machinery as he is about his clients. Precision Label and Tag currently has three presses, including both a Mark Andy and an AquaFlex, and Rotoflex inspection/rewind equipment. Suppliers and partners handle the company’s prepress needs. Weller says that, in general, the company is most cost-effective with orders that range from 50,000 to 10 million labels. “When I first started, I was told ‘Just don’t grow too fast,’ and it always stuck with me,” he says.



Precision’s VP and COO Robert Weller

“Any acquisitions we’ve made have been well thought out,” Weller says. “We own our own machines, and we have no debt. We work within our constraints so that we don’t leverage ourselves or our clients.”

The company’s sales effort is handled by authorized distributors. “We support [them] in their various trading regions by keeping them supplied with the latest in on-product labeling: the products their clients need to improve market share,” he says. “We do not sell our products directly to the consumer as this would breach our distributor agreements. Whether it is the latest cooking instruction label or an updated nutrition facts label, we work closely with our distributors and their clients to ensure satisfaction. Our distributors trust us.”

Weller says that he has learned a lot over the last 25 years, particularly that in order to stay relevant, label converters have to constantly adapt to both market and industry changes. He points out that nutrition facts and cooking instructions were not seen on some food labels as recently as ten years ago. Additionally, the need for more sustainable materials and production processes has changed the game in many respects.

Specifically, Weller says, specialty food label materials and content are constantly being improved upon. For example, he notes that Precision Label and Tag manufactures biodegradable labels for “green” food containers that will breakdown in landfill, as a replacement for plastic labels. “This has been a dramatic growth opportunity for us,” he adds. “Also, content and graphics are constantly changing on food labels to initiate and maintain consumer interest.”

Weller adds, “In the long-term, we are finding that over the last ten years, production runs are becoming shorter and more frequent, and we don’t see this changing. This can be very difficult for the larger manufacturer but fits in well with our program and capabilities.

“I’ve seen a lot of changes since 1987, and we’ve found ourselves having to adapt to new materials, machinery, etc.,” he says. “You have to make investments in order to maintain, and in order to continually grow.”

Weller is someone who not only seems to embrace change, but looks forward to it. At this year’s Labelexpo, he said that he welcomes the next phase in printing technology. “Digital flexo is the next generation,” he says. “Once it becomes commercial … its got legs.”

He adds that, in his experience, it’s as vital to embrace change as it is to create an environment that works for everyone involved. Maintaining good supplier relations, he says, is also crucial.

Weller emphasizes that the key to success for a label converter, especially in today’s market, is recognizing what type of industry it is. “The label business is a craft industry,” he adds. “That’s the key. If you see it as anything other than a craft industry, it’s a race to the bottom for mass production. It’s an easy way to turn a large fortune into a small fortune. What makes it work is knowing that it’s a craft industry, knowing your machinery and hiring the right people.” – Catherine Diamond, Labels and Labelling

                                                                         -30-

my comments....

........the advice not to grow too fast came from my golf partner at the time, the late Doug Ford, Sr, then President of Deco Labels, Toronto. When I started out, Doug had already been in business for 25 years and was one of the patriarchs in our industry. Doug's business has since been passed down to his son's......Doug, Rob and Randy.

Outrage after union rep compares Harper to Hitler!




Dear Readers,

This morning, I bring you verbatim, a well written article by Jessica Hume, the Toronto Sun scribe covering the Parliamentary Bureau, with my comments below, as usual.....

Union opposition to a bill proposing to force them to disclose detailed financial information was expected. But no one saw it coming when Humberto DaSilva, a Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) representative made his infamous video.....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqg_cV8uj5Q
to criticize the bill by comparing Prime Minister Stephen Harper to Hitler, calling on Canadians to stand up to the government or else "shut up and wait for your boxcar."

Bill C-377 proposes to force unions to disclose information on their spending to membership and to the public. "In 1933 Hitler said we must close union offices, confiscate their money and put their leaders in prison," DaSilva said in the video posted Thursday. "Now Bill C-377 will start the process of confiscating union funds and criminalizing union work."

Tory MP Pierre Poilievre, a harsh critic of unions' lax financial reporting obligations, was taken aback by what he saw. "The contents of this video are disgusting and have no place in our society," he said. "CUPE should disclose to workers if any of their mandatory dues were spent on this hateful video."
Despite being against the bill, union boss Gary Corbett distanced himself from the video and DaSilva - "I don't know the guy."

"Bill-377 is bad news on many fronts," Corbett said. "But there's a lot in that video I personally wouldn't have gone to." Even NDP MP Alexandre Boulerice, who previously worked for CUPE, was perturbed.
"It's preposterous, it's ridiculous and it's absurd," Boulerice said. "When you say things like that you take yourself out of the rational debate. And this is not welcome, because it has the possibility to derail the discussion we really need to have about this bill."

The private member's bill is making its way through the House of Commons


my response.....

Seeing Sid Ryan, CUPE President leading the G20 parade of hooligans through downtown Toronto in June 2010 made me skeptical of this fellows intentions but.....

                                                        G20 riot, Toronto June 2010

....this mindless diatribe by one of his CUPE union representatives is proof positive that the time is long past to make union finances public. Since union dues are tax deductible, that makes them subsidized by tax payers as a whole and I resent having to pay one red cent for these present day ingrates!

                                                          Sid Ryan, CUPE President

With the passage of Bill C-377, our government will protect the little guy by letting folks opt out of unions freely and keep the dues to feed their families. No more funding of ridiculous photo-ops! I've come to expect nothing of value from these mindless union neanderthals and they've never failed to deliver!

You can put your comments below....

.............................30....................................

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

Woman runs down husband with car for not voting?





Woman runs down husband with car for not voting: Cops
Dear Readers, 



Holly Nicole Solomon is shown in her booking photo taken from the Maricopa County (AZ) Sheriff's website, released to Reuters November 12, 2012. (REUTERS/Maricopa Sheriff's Department/HandoIs about a
This article by David Schwartz of Reuters is about an Arizona woman, in despair at the re-election of Democratic President Barack Obama. She ran down her husband with the family car in suburban Phoenix on Saturday because he failed to vote in the election, police said on Monday.

Holly Solomon, 28, was arrested after running over husband Daniel Solomon following a wild chase that left him pinned underneath the vehicle. Daniel Solomon, 36, was in critical condition at a local hospital, but is expected to survive, Gilbert police spokesman Sergeant Jesse Sanger said.

Police said Daniel Solomon told them his wife became angry over his “lack of voter participation” in last Tuesday’s presidential election and believed her family would face hardship as a result of Obama winning another term.

Witnesses reported the argument broke out on Saturday morning in a parking lot and escalated. Mrs Solomon then chased her husband around the lot with the car, yelling at him as he tried to hide behind a light pole, police said. He was struck after attempting to flee to a nearby street.

Obama won the national election with 332 electoral votes compared with 206 for Republican challenger Mitt Romney. Arizona’s 11 electoral votes were won by Romney.


My response......
                                               Obama and Romney during the campaign!

Does it really surprise anyone that the markets have reacted with sheer horror with the unforeseen re-election of Barry as President with a market drop of over 300 points on Wall Street the day after...a drop not seen since the market crash. 

Jerry Agar tells us that too many Americans "want 'free' health care on a credit card with a negative balance beyond comprehension." Don't these folks realize that China only has so much 'free' cash to throw around?

Peter Worthington tells us that Republicans must, "be more inclusive" and learn to appeal to Latinos, Liberals, and lefties if they want to lead America, like that will ever happen!

David Frum tells us, "the immolation of Romney was not his fault but the result of GOP stagnation and misjudgement," in his new ebook, Why Romney Lost, available on Amazon Kindle for $3.99. David says he is a conservative but he's not trusted by the party!

Last winter, we took a little drive from Panama City Beach to Naples and looked at a number of Florida foreclosures. It seemed like the ideal time to buy. The banks wanted to dump properties and the borrowing rates were low. But title issues, insurance restrictions, sky-rocketing property taxes, local crime and the fact that rental income presented it's own special problems, considering folks would move in but couldn't afford to pay rent since there were no jobs all conspired to keep us as renters for the one or two weeks each year that we would even use a place. All of this convinced us that Florida was just not going to be in our plans...for the time being, at least! The operative word here is use......if we were looking at spending a few winter months, I found a 3 bed condo overlooking a salt-water bay on Marco Island that I could have had for less than $120,000.00....1/3 what it sold for new!

However, on a positive note, the Toronto Star reported that firearm stocks did rally on the day after the Obama re-election. I've already called my broker to increase my positions in Smith & Wesson and Strum Ruger. The next quarter at least looks positive for both!

..........................30.....................................

Monday, 12 November 2012

The 'snake-oil salesman'???


















                                         Donna and Karen of the Markham Village Ratepayers