08 December 2007

Turf War: did Danny give Steve the secret of fake popularity in exchange for future billions?

Isn't it odd that across the country a whole raft of people spontaneously wrote letters to the editor wanting an end to the Schreiber mess without any further inquiry?

And they all use very similar language.

Almost like they were getting messages from the same central hub.

"Charade". "Waste of money". "Dragging up" things from the distant past. "Going back 15 years". "Send Schrieber back."

Blah. Blah. Blah.

Even in the winter, Conservative astroturf still springs up looking real but still being as fake as fake can be.

You know astroturf. It's the stuff that turns nature on it's head: manure that looks like grassroots but still smells really bad.

Hey,maybe this is what Danny and Steve traded during their meeting: the secrets of faking public opinion. You'd swear these same comments have turned up on local open line shows whenever there's been a whiff of local political scandal involving their team.

The war is over and as a token of good faith, Danny gave Steve a taste of what the poll goosing machine looks like in full operation.

Sounds silly doesn't it? 

Poll goosing and astroturfing are silly ideas, but the local Tories still devote huge amounts of energy to the campaign, don't they?

Anyway, take this letter as a starting point:

I have a comment about the Schreiber hearings going on in Ottawa over the last two weeks. Can it be that our elected officials are so out of it (P. Martin, A. Nevil, J. Washalesalies?) that they cannot see this man has nothing on his mind other than making a mockery of the Canadian government and staying in Canada as long as possible to avoid prosecution in Germany?

I am amazed that they are not giving him a kiss on the cheek every morning. It's pathetic. It shows the average person how much the opposition parties will drag things on to try to get something on the current government. They are going back 15 to 20 years in hopes something sticks to Harper. What a waste of time and money.

I say send him back to Germany as quickly as possible to face his bribery and fraud charges, so the government can get back to the business at hand.

Doug Cowlthorp


Then there are the rest:

The Telegram 08 Dec 2007

Enough with the Schreiber charade I am wondering if anyone can explain to me why millions and millions of our tax dollars are being spent on this Karlheinz Schreiber charade. It was more than 15 years ago. How far back do we want to go?

Why aren't we investigating any of the multitude of Chretien scandals or his tax-sheltered, morally questionable follower, Paul Martin? It's history.

Ninety-nine per cent of the evidence is the testimony of an aging, foreign man who specializes in creating scandals and, by his own admission, has made an entire career of shadowy payments and nebulous affairs, and is forever extending his stay in Canada to avoid his impending criminal trial in Germany.

Extradite him already, and stop wasting my money and pre-empting more intellectual TV like "The Simpsons." This is simply misuse of our tax dollars by the opposition to grab more votes.

Brendan Hynes



Re "No cash for PM" (Dec. 5):

Federal politicians are particularly brilliant at making our entire government look like fools. And the Canadian media repeatedly fall over themselves to wallow in any whiff of scandal on Parliament Hill, no matter how far-fetched. Karlheinz Schreiber, on stage for his 15 minutes of fame, should be awarded a theatrical performance medal for making both institutions look like total jugheads.

Jim McDonald

Caledon East


The Daily Gleaner

05 Dec 07

Schreiber inquiry not needed

Karlheinz Schreiber has avoided extradition to Germany for more than eight years, so delaying and denying justice. His competent lawyers were skilled in the appeal process. Mud slinging, character assassinations and a circus atmosphere in Ottawa are evident.

Canadians realize that the thousands of pages in the upcoming inquiry report could cost taxpayers more than a million dollars. It will conclude that our former successful and competent PM behaved in a bizarre, secretive, desperate, greedy, unsavoury, reckless and unprincipled manner.

We have serious economic issues in forestry, manufacturing, health, etc. where our focus and ingenuity are needed. Is spending money wisely important in our Parliament? Police should be responsible for resolving this issue.

Harold Phalen



The Telegram 05 Dec 07

Axe the inquest

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has appointed Prof. David Johnston to decide how the public inquiry into the financial dealings between Brian Mulroney and Karlheinz Schreiber should be conducted.

Prof. Johnston would, after careful consideration of all the facts, do the country a great service by recommending that a commission of inquiry is unnecessary and a scandalous waste of taxpayers' money.

Burford Ploughman

St. John's


 Edmonton Journal

 04 Dec 07

Schreiber saga a waste of time, money

Re: "Schreiber starts paper shuttle between home and jail:  Will resume testifying before Commons committee on Tuesday," The Journal, Dec. 1.

Am I the only one who is tired of reading about Karlheinz Schreiber complaining that he did not have time to peruse the 35,000 pages of personal documents -- the equivalent of 50 700- page novels -- to refresh his memory about the $300,000 or $500,000 he allegedly gave former prime minister Brian Mulroney for doing, as Schreiber alleges, absolutely nothing?

How much is this hearing by the Commons ethics committee costing taxpayers? Schreiber had been ordered deported to Germany, where he is wanted on tax evasion, fraud and other corruption-related charges. I say put him on a plane and let him go. Our courts are backlogged with cases while Schreiber not only ties up valuable court time, but also wastes taxpayers' money.

You and I are paying for this indirectly through government lawyers, etc. Good riddance.

Don Marcus, Edmonton

[No, Don, you aren't alone. The rest of the Connie plants are moaning too]


Times & Transcript

 03 Dec 07

Inquiry just a waste of money

To The Editor:

A large number of Canadians will be disappointed in the prime minister if he allows the Schreiber inquiry to go forward. Nothing definitive can possibly come from people like Schreiber and Mulroney. Parliament should not be interfering in the judicial system.

The German system wants Schreiber behind bars. Let them have him and save Canadians the expense. As for Brian Mulroney, the public made up their mind on him some time ago.

The country did quite well while he was PM, but he does have a darker side to him. Old news.

I submit that most people are hoping that Mr. Harper cancels this whole inquiry and saves taxpayers $30 million. The Opposition will howl, but so what! It is Christmas; let's spend the money on another convention centre for the country or, better yet, a dozen new curling rinks.

Robert MacDiarmid, Moncton


National Post

03 Dec 07

Send Schreiber back to Germany

Re: Lawyer Claims Case Is 'Purely Political,' Dec. 1.

From my point of view, the "utter waste of time," as Karlheinz Schreiber's lawyer Edward Greenspan put it, is that Mr. Schreiber is still in Canada at all. He should have been back in Germany in 2000 at the latest. The eight years of haggling has been a gross waste of everyone's time.

If Mr. Greenspan is so concerned about losing his client and the attached fees he represents, perhaps he should apply to the German bar so he can represent Mr. Schreiber at his trial in Germany. Note to the Canadian government: phone Lufthansa, book a seat on the next available flight and send Mr. Schreiber home.

Enough of this charade.

Jim Anderson, Victoria.


The London Free Press

01 Dec 07


Karlheinz Schreiber's game plan is obvious -- an attempt to extend the meeting of the ethics committee and avoid extradition to Germany to face the justice that he so richly deserves.

How can one believe, in such circumstances, anything that he has to say?

My recommendation to the committee is that Schreiber be given a maximum of one week to provide his testimony, starting Monday, following which he would be placed on an airplane for return to Germany.

At present Schreiber is in the driver's seat, playing his game with MPs. Let us resume control of the matter in hand.

Michael Cornell London


National Post

01 Dec 07

'The gods must be shaking their heads'

Re: A Man Eager For An Encore, John Ivison, Nov. 30.

The only "political point" that the ethics committee members scored with me is to reaffirm that our politicians continue to waste our valuable tax dollars. What a joke they make of themselves, what a waste of time and money, and what a shame when you think of all the serious problems in our country that they should be working on.

Lynn Clark, Grimsby, Ont.