Paper won’t refuse ink

I’ve read some strange things in my day. As my father once said, paper won’t refuse ink. That ditty gets amplified in the blogosphere.

But this is crazy.

Essentially a conspiracy theorist who actually thinks that NSBI is part of an international conspiracy to further international terrorism.

Let me respond to a couple of his whacked out comments:

The first question that must be asked is why are Butterfield really coming to Halifax Nova Scotia? This nation’s financial centres are located in Toronto and Montreal.

it’s amazing how people that claim to be so smart can be so dumb. Why is it so hard to believe that Stephen Lund and his team actually spent years working with the financial sector and has convinced them to locate in Nova Scotia? Is this guy’s opinion of Nova Scotia so low that he thinks that company’s have no reason to locate there? (other than devious reasons)

Then he goes into his silliness, and then this:

Considering the present demographics extant, I would ask where Butterfield Bank intends to get these 400 “Nova Scotia workers” from?

Again, what a dissappointing attitude towards Nova Scotia. To be clear, the local educational institutions are working with NSBI and the firm to ramp up the 400 workers over time. Also, to assume that people won’t move from other areas of Canada to Nova Scotia. That shows more ignorance than his crazy theories. When RIM announced in Halifax, they got requests from all over Canada – unprompted – from people wanting to move to Halifax.

“Marcus Leja from Calgary, Canada writes: If Nova Scotia Business Inc. is ‘attracting’ (i.e. bribing) Bermuda financial institutions to open offices in Halifax, then there is nothing impressive about this story at all. Considering the high education level of the Halifax area population, the fact the provincial government has to provide handouts to business for it to open there is absolutely alarming.”

What a bunch of unadulterated bull crap. Alberta doles out more ‘bribes’ in thier language to attract international investment (and to prop up agriculture) than in Nova Scotia’s wildest dreams (through incentives to the oil sector). How can so many people be so uninformed? Does anybody have an answer?

The Eagleman thinks that this new payroll rebate plan, Nova Scotia Business Inc has been playing with, is nothing more that a scam.

For every dollar rebated to companies throught the payroll rebate plan $3-$4 are put into the local economy from personal, corporate, property, sales and other taxes.

If that’s a ‘scam’, I say bring it on. And as for Calgarians with their little biases against Atl. Canada, either take ten minutes to educate yourself or shut up. Alberta (and the Feds) have put in place one of the most aggressive tax break regimes in the world to attract investment into the oil sands. The agriculture sector is subsidized in Alberta more than all industries in Nova Scotia combined.

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0 Responses to Paper won’t refuse ink

  1. scott says:

    This was my favorite diatribe from the pseudo CTF blog:

    When will Michelin start making condoms?

    I mean face it folks, Big Premier Rod MacDonald, Stora, Bowater, Butterfield Bank and Michelin have been screwing the living hell out of the taxpayer lately.

    I think we need a little protection, so come on Michelin Man, start making taxpayer hazard condoms.

  2. Anonymous says:

    This is an alternate view from Nova Scotia about their tax dollars and I don’t see what is ‘crazy’ or even unreasonable about it. Not to bring up a recent posting by somebody, but that coupled with calling opposing viewpoints ‘crazy’ is hardly helping.

    I read through his blog and its pretty heavy on details, and makes a pretty convincing point. If you don’t agree with it, fine, but as you said, don’t piss in somebody else’s wheaties.

  3. David Campbell says:

    Come on. That doesn’t make any sense. An ‘alternate view’? There is a point at which common sense needs to kick in. How about if I said that “person x” was paid by revolutionary communist forces planning a coup out of Sussex, New Brunswick. Him and his gang of Stalinists are planning to impose of communist state in New Brunswick and they have lined up 1,000 suicide bombers to ensure compliance. Would you call this an ‘alternate view’?

    The crap about subsidies, finding workers, etc. that’s fine as an ‘alternate’ view but trying to link in international terrorism and money laundering without a shred of evidence is just plain, as I said, ‘crazy’.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Read the article. It says NOTHING about “terrorism”, its says money laundering. Canada has a long and distinguished career in money laundering, the americans were after canadian banks for years to get them to clean up their act.

    He asks many good questions, however, I don’t know if they are true, but likewise I don’t know if anything you blog is actually true either.

    “Could this be why Joel Fichard and Melanie Comstock , The Federation of Law Societies of Canada and the Nova Scotia Barristers Society challenged this new Legislation called ” Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) & Terrorists Financing Act.Why would anyone want to hide or protect a criminal act that could allow terrorists to harm the people of this nation?”

    That’s a very good question. Why WOULD anybody challenge them?

    I think those are EXCELLENT questions. Why would a bank in the caymans, a well known tax haven, open a branch in Nova Scotia with three times as many employees? In fact thats a DAMN good question and I”d love to see more blogs in New Brunswick ask those types of questions.

    “Could it be that a few residents of Nova Scotia have opened up offshore accounts with Butterfield in the Cayman Islands and that by Butterfield opening up here in Halifax, these offshore accounts can be better accessed ?”

    That goes without question but I doubt is the reason. These accounts are all digital, you certainly don’t need them close by. Statistics canada estimates close to 200 billion in hidden income lies in tax shelters, this COULD just be a quid pro quo. In some sectors there is getting to be pressure from people saying why should we pay so much tax while corporations pay hardly any and they and the rich hide billions in the caymans and we get nothing out of it. This way we at least get a few jobs, although we also subsidize them.

    “Supreme Court Judge Chief Justice Kennedy on April 17, 2002, exempted Nova Scotia Lawyers (Joel Fichard and Melanie Comstock} Members of the NS Barristers Society, from certain provisions of the Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act. This decision follows the oral one rendered earlier on March 21, 2002, by which he exempted Nova Scotia lawyers from reporting suspicious transactions to FINTRAC until the matter is heard on the merits”

    That’s the kind of reporting we don’t even see from the media in New Brunswick. I haven’t followed up on it, perhaps he IS just making it up, I don’t know, but he does have a link. Why WOULD a judge exempt two lawyers from having to abide by the same laws as we all have to, not only that, but two lawyers who originally argued against the legislation in the first place.

    That shouldn’t have people saying this is crazy, this should have people saying “is this TRUE?” and then researching it. If it IS true then it is quite scary, and this guy should be given a journalist award for his work.

    As you admit, the other part is just a difference of opinion, you might not like that a guy from Alberta said such a thing, but you can’t fault this guy for quoting it.

    If we had a few more people like this guy digging around in New Brunswick maybe some of the real dirt would come to light. He is right on about money laundering, and your associating that with terrorism is grossly unfair and inflammatory.

  5. David Campbell says:

    We could beat this to death but you and I are a good example of two people reading the same article from a different perspective. To me this comment:

    Could it be that a few residents of Nova Scotia have opened up offshore accounts with Butterfield in the Cayman Islands and that by Butterfield opening up here in Halifax, these offshore accounts can be better accessed ? Anyone refuting this should be mindful that since 9/11,the United States has been diligently keeping an eye on the movement of monies out of all offshore accounts that could potentially finance terrorist activities, and if money is moving within the same bank, it will be less likely to set off any red flags and therefore, harder to follow. a pretty clear indication that this writer is linking the bank setting up in Nova Scotia potentially to terrorism financing. You call this ‘inflammatory’ but he says – no ambiguity here – “that moeny moving within the same bank, [will be]less likely to set off any red flags and therefore, harder to follow”. He says this in the context of the US looking for terrorism financing.

    Perhaps you didn’t read this paragraph?

    I will not veer from my original argument here. This blogger can’t believe that an international bank would ever want to set up in Halifax without some unsavory reason. And I fundamentally and categorically disagree.

  6. Anonymous says:

    A conspiracy theory is exactly that-a ‘theory’. There is no theory presented here, only questions and things to consider. Out of an article that is over twelve paragraphs long you are basing a supposition on one sentence.

    Let’s look at the sentence, there is no causal link there, no theory, there is only a hypothetical reasoning given for making a potential decision. The ‘why we should be mindful’ is simply a reminder that there is a link between money laundering and terrorism, and that IF there were a causal relation then this would be one of the outcomes. He doesn’t say that Nova Scotians are financing terrorism, he’s saying that their are tax avoiders (and there is a percentage there that are, as there are in every province), and that banking organizations involved in tax avoidance (which is technically illegal) MAY be involved in money laundering (which he backs up with the two court cases). Further, he notes that a possible explanation of setting up in this manner is because it avoids one of the scrutiny provisions of the US’s. All of those are ‘facts’, if somebody wants to debate them, then fine, go ahead. But by making all those suppositions doesn’t mean equating what a province is doing with terrorism.

    It IS implying something may be underhanded, which is the point of the blog, and as somebody who has done extensive work (albeit a long time ago) in tax avoidance, money laundering and crime, I can tell you that business, particularly banking, is not some enterprise that is regulated by credits and debits. If you don’t think any other place in the world other than Nova Scotia will offer a labour rebate you’re mistaken, and if you think that out of the entire planet these decision makers looked at Nova Scotia’s investment people and just ‘liked the cut of their jib’ or their hustle, then I’ll again have to side with the poster the other day that maintains you are blinded by your rose coloured glasses.

    It may be nice to see the world that way, in your mind it may even be necessary, but don’t jump to conclusions and call other people crazy who are not willing to take billionaires at face value. That was an extremely well written article, there were no theories presented, there were just about a dozen issues and questions brought up and their possible explanations. Good for him for raising them, its a hell of a lot more than most reporters do.

    In fact, it is even more dangerous than that, because by calling it ‘crazy’ it detracts from the individual arguments. Notice the whole conversation is not about these unanswered questions but simply on whether they should even be listened to. That’s a dangerous thing in a society, that’s what keeps important questions from being asked, let alone answered. If you think its crazy, PROVE IT, simple as that. Al Hogan may look at your blog and jump to all kinds of conclusions and call it ‘crazy’, that’s what life is like in an intellectual box.

    In fact, if you or any of those hundreds of readers out there want an interesting excercise, take a viewpoint opposite of what you typically believe and try to prove that its true. Ideologies and beliefs just tie you down to things that have no bearing on reality, just try it for fun sometime. Otherwise, you might as well believe that the earth is the centre of the universe. And remember, often crazy people are the only ones willing to speak the truth.

    “when a well packaged web of lies has been told gradually over a generation, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and the speaker a raving lunatic”

  7. scott says:

    We could beat this to death but you and I are a good example of two people reading the same article from a different perspective.

    Yeah, one is reading it from his home computer while the other is reading it from a blackberry in his/her padded cell.