Friday, February 29, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

It may seem as if wherever you turn, there's trouble. That is partly because you are failing to see the obvious. You are on the verge of breaking through a major obstacle. That's not something to fear, it's something to celebrate. Reach for the best. You deserve it.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

We all find it easy, sometimes, to hear exactly what we want to hear. If someone is using ambiguous language or mincing their words for fear of causing offence, we can easily turn their ambiguity to our advantage. Make clarity a priority today.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

You are making quite a lot of assumptions at the moment. Some of these are correct and others are way off the mark. They all seem equally convincing until we properly test them out. Sorting out the dead wood, so to speak, requires as much time as you can spare.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Right now, you've got quite enough on your plate dealing with something simple. And it may yet turn out to be slightly less possible than you expect it to be. Don't use any complex, convoluted approach. Seek out the path of least resistance.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

You are no longer hemmed in by a predicament. You are, at last, starting to win the battle and, with it, the freedom to make a big choice

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

Most people do not have the same reserves of energy that you do. Just be sure to find a way to turn negative emotions into something positive. That way, you can steer a situation in the direction you choose.

Sagittarius (Nov. 23 — Dec. 21)

You are dealing with a pressing matter and Mars will assure that you to take action sooner rather than later. Progress can and will be made with your perseverance.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Make a firm decision rather than fuss about something that has taken up too much of your time and energy. After a while, you'll see a big improvement.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Canadian Budget Winners, losers: Little cash for poor in budget

Winners, losers: Little cash for poor in budget

Updated Tue. Feb. 26 2008 5:27 PM ET

The Canadian Press

OTTAWA -- The Conservative government put its money where its votes are with a federal budget that does comparatively little for more than three million Canadians struggling on the social fringe.

Broad-based tax cuts already committed to drain $60 billion from once-bursting federal coffers over the next five years mean new cash for those most in need is modest.

Child care and affordable housing measures are conspicuously absent, despite long waiting lists in many parts of the country. Extra spending for First Nations, the poorest of the poor, amounts to $135 million this year and next, mostly to clean up dirty water and improve health and education services on reserves.

For the rest of Canada, social investments include:

  • $110 million for new mental-health projects.
  • $282 million over two years to support war veterans.
  • $90 million to extend a program that helps unemployed older workers find jobs in depressed regions.
  • $60 million to allow low-income seniors collecting the Guaranteed Income Supplement to earn $3,500 -- up from $500 -- before that benefit is clawed back.

Perhaps the biggest social-spending winners were students. Ottawa will invest $350 million for a new Canada Student Grant Program, but it doesn't kick in until the Millennium Scholarship Fund expires next year.

Suddenly tight fiscal room is coupled with economic uncertainty as Canada braces for possible fallout from U.S. troubles.

"We have come to a fork in the road," said Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. "Some would have us go down the path to higher spending, higher interest payments and higher taxes. That approach is misguided. Our government is taking the path that requires focus, prudence and discipline."

At the same time, the budget Tuesday also declares "Canadians have reason to be confident about the future. We have the strongest fiscal position of any Group of Seven country."

Budget 2008 aims to cut federal debt by about $10 billion this fiscal year while introducing a tax-free savings account and helping manufacturers and processors.

New program spending rises by 3.4 per cent -- way down from past budget hikes that saw increases at least double that amount.

Working poor feel forgotten

Cindy Buott, a single mother in Peterborough, Ont., says she feels all but forgotten by governments at all levels.

She and her 15-year-old daughter live on $1,300 a month, most of it social assistance. Buott worked for $10 an hour as a telemarketer until a debilitating case of Crohn's disease forced her to quit. There's little cash left once she pays rent, heating, hydro and telephone bills, she said in an interview.

"I eat very light and there are times when I just don't eat. Especially when it gets toward the end of the month."

Buott, 50, is far from alone.

The recent C.D. Howe Institute study "Reducing Poverty: What has Worked, and What Should Come Next" says about 11 per cent of Canadians - roughly 3.4 million people - fall below Statistics Canada's low-income cutoff. By that yardstick, a family of four in a small city earning less than $27,000 a year after taxes is considered relatively poor.

The anti-poverty group Campaign 2000 said in a report last September that 800,000 kids across Canada face the shame and exclusion that entails.

Buott's youngest daughter is among them.

"When she starts to look around and does the comparison, it's pretty tough. It's that social isolation. There's no friends. There's no money to participate in any kind of activities. Lots of times we're just in the house. That's it. There's nothing to look forward to."

Rob Rainer, executive director of the National Anti-Poverty Organization, says the Conservatives have taken a particularly ideological approach since taking power two years ago.

"Cutting taxes, encouraging people to take full responsibility for their lives and downplaying the importance of public investment in social infrastructure - that's been their approach. And there's very little evidence to show that ideology is successful."

Winners and losers in the federal budget:


  • Seniors: The budget allows seniors to shelter more of their Guaranteed Income Supplement from taxes, even if they earn extra income. There's also an extension of a program to help older workers stay in the workforce.
  • Savers: Introduction of flexible tax-free savings accounts that let the money grow tax-free. The money can also be withdrawn tax-free.
  • Manufacturers: One billion dollars in relief for three extra years of accelerated capital cost allowance for new machinery and equipment. Another $250 million over five years for an Automotive Innovation Fund.


  • Homeless: No new funding for affordable housing.
  • Child care: No measures to create new spaces or enhance tax benefits.
  • Working poor: No change in minimum wage in federal sector, which activists say needs to be at least $10 an hour.

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

Over the next few days it will slowly become safe to stand up. Emotionally, it's as if you've have been crouching in the presence of someone. Armed, now, with a valuable insight and fired by a new determination to assert your rights, you have the power to stand tall.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

Venus is occupying a most favourable section of the sky, so think about what you want in the coming days from this planet of love and money. Inspiring ideas and brilliant plans will be hatched.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

You have wrestled long enough with a tough dilemma. You will get no further by continuing to mull it over. Your best bet now is to trust what you feel most strongly and act on it. Proceed in the best direction you can see.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

The planets insist that you are being taken on a magical tour. You may think things look pretty normal. Whatever you think, you're not quite seeing the full picture. Certain things have to happen now, so that certain, more desirable things can come about.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Canadian clients caught up in Liechtenstein bank tax probe

Canadian clients caught up in Liechtenstein bank tax probe

Print this article
Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Federal tax officials are reviewing financial information on 100 Canadians on a list of wealthy clients of a Liechtenstein bank that is at the centre of an ever-widening international probe into allegations of tax evasion.

The Canada Revenue Agency “has started examinations of about 100 Canadian taxpayers in connection with accounts in Liechtenstein,” CRA spokeswoman Jacqueline Couture said in Ottawa. “If we get to them before they get to us, then we would take the appropriate measures, unless they want to go through the voluntary disclosure program before we actually can identify them.”

Canada has joined tax officials in Germany, Australia, France, Italy, New Zealand, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States in an investigation into accounts held at LGT Group, the largest bank in Liechtenstein.

The case centres around information allegedly stolen from a division of LGT, which is owned by Liechtenstein's royal family.

In a statement released Sunday, the bank said account information for 1,400 clients was taken in 2002 by former employee Heinrich Kieber.

According to the bank, Mr. Keiber was convicted of fraud in 2004 in Liechtenstein and turned over a CD Rom containing the records to LGT. The bank said it destroyed the CD and considered the case closed.

However, several months ago Mr. Kieber sold the data to the German intelligence service for €5-million. German tax officials have used it to go after roughly 160 people for alleged tax evasion.

On Monday, British tax officials confirmed they paid the Germans 100,000 pounds for the client list and several other countries have contacted Germany about the information.

Ms. Couture of the CRA said the agency does not pay for information. She said the Germans shared the information through the OECD's Forum on Tax Administration, which includes Canada.

Germany's Finance Ministry has said the acquisition of the disc was legal and it has given no information on Mr. Kieber. He is believed to be in Australia.

Tax authorities in the U.S. are going after 100 names on the list while French officials said they are also examining 100 people. Australia has singled out 20 people so far.

Liechtenstein has faced criticism over its banking system, which permits foreigners to open trusts anonymously. The country has been singled out by the OECD as one of three “unco-operative tax havens”

“Excessive bank secrecy rules and a failure to exchange information on foreign tax evaders are relics of a different time and have no role to play in relations between democratic societies,” Angel Gurria, the OECD's secretary general, said last week.

Officials at LGT have filed criminal charges against Mr. Keiber and condemned the Germans for buying the material. “LGT regards such methods as being extremely offensive,” the bank said.

LGT has about 77,000 clients from around the world.

© Copyright The Globe and Mail

Storm still heading for Toronto

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

You have a well-tuned instinct concerning what chances are worth taking versus those that don't justify the risk. The world is full of skeptics. Mind that they don't undermine your confidence.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

You would prefer not to have to dwell on a certain issue that keeps plaguing you. But unless you take a good hard look at it, you won't be able to move on. Do the necessary. The power of Mars is with you.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Feeling down over your litany of ills will do you a great disservice. Forget, for now, what's probably not satisfactory. Keep away from what's definitely bad. Then enjoy a day that has the potential to be happy and light.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

You are beginning to realize how embroiled you have become in a tricky situation. The good news is that it is nowhere near as tricky as it was a while back. You can now see clearly what you are up against.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Storm still heading for Toronto
February 26, 2008

Despite predictions of commuter chaos this morning from the latest blast by old man winter, the early conditions seem downright serene. But don't put that shovel away just yet.

The snow forecasted to hit the GTA early this morning is still on the way, it's just late.

Environment Canada senior climatologist David Phillips said yesterday this latest dumping of the white stuff will measure from 10 to 15 centimetres in the Toronto area as a system sweeps up from the United States.

Currently it is edging east from the Hamilton area and is expected to reach Toronto in the late morning.

The snow is expected to fall for the rest of the day and last well into early Wednesday morning. The temperature is also expected to dip, with Environment Canada predicting a low of minus 10 to go with the flurries tomorrow.

This is already the snowiest February on record but Mother Nature apparently wants to add to that mark.

"We're already in record territory and this will only add to the record snowfall," Phillips said.

The previous record dump for February in Toronto was 66.6 centimetres in 1950.

This February has already seen 69.8 centimetres of snow fall.

In fact, Phillips says "it's entirely possible" that another major snowfall record could fall by the time winter packs up.

The most snow accumulation over a winter season came in 1938-39 when 207 centimetres of snow fell.

At 148 centimetres, there's still plenty of time to break that record, Phillips feels.

"There has never been a March without snow and there's been only two Aprils ever without a trace of snow," the climatologist said.

"So, we're not done with winter yet."

In fact, snow has been the big story in Toronto all winter.

An average winter will see only two storms of 10 centimetres or more.

This winter, we've already endured five storms of that magnitude.

It's been so snowy that snow has fallen an average of every third day this winter.

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today=Snow could set winter record

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

Saturn and the sun pulling in opposite directions explain the complicated situation you are involved in. Use your intelligence and respond with wit and ingenuity.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

If you know what's good for you, you'll stop worrying so much about what is or isn't good for you. It's always wise to be aware of pitfallsbeing obsessive is not the answer.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Your fear that a goal is a pipe dream is unfounded. Altered circumstances will begin to facilitate what now seems improbable.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Several new opportunities will soon free you of an onerous task or complicated commitment. Apply yourself with enthusiasm to ensure the whole process is enjoyable.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Snow could set winter record
February 23, 2008

Staff Reporter

City workers have removed 27,500 truckloads of snow from Toronto streets since last week, when officials announced a massive snow removal plan.

As of noon yesterday, 1,250 kilometres of road had been cleared, said Peter Noehammer, the city's director of transportation services.

Crews have been working since Feb. 15 to clear narrow, downtown streets. The removal plan will cost an estimated $20 million, just less than one-third of the city's snow removal budget for the year.

February has had record-breaking snowfall levels. Winter has dumped 69.4 centimetres of fluffy stuff across the city. The GTA has seen nothing like it since 1950, when 66.6 centimetres fell.

Since November, nearly 150 centimetres of snow has fallen on the GTA. It is looking like this winter may break the all-time snowfall record of 207 centimetres, which dates to the winter of 1938-39.

The Star

Sunday, February 24, 2008

It's time for Hillary Clinton to give up her futile quest for the U.S. presidency

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

For some while now, with regard to a key involvement, you have been in a state of confusion. This has not entirely stopped you from taking action or, at least, allowing action to be taken. In any case, you'll find the clarity to see what needs to be done.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

In just a few days, you will be armed with a valuable insight and fired up by a new resolve. Mars is beaming power at you. You will stride out boldly to alter a few simple factors that will make a world of difference.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Unnecessary restrictions on your potential have been holding you back. Through a combination of fear and self-doubt, you have shirked avenues that have offered adventure. Imminent events will do much to renew your confidence.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

You will find yourself in the right time and place to do what needs to be done regarding a key commitment. A new and exciting era is dawning, and you're going to love it.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Message to Hillary Clinton: Best get out now
February 24, 2008


It's time for Hillary Clinton to give up her futile quest for the U.S. presidency. She needs to get out soon, putting a united Democratic party ahead of personal ambition before her reputation in a sometimes-ugly campaign is further sullied.

After Barack Obama's blowout victory in Wisconsin last week, the Clinton camp vowed to "go negative" on an opponent who has won more than twice as many primary-season contests as Clinton; leads her in popular vote and pledged delegates; is making gains in Clinton's base of women, blue-collar workers and Hispanics; and is shown in most polls beating John McCain, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, in the general election in November, with Clinton trailing the Arizona senator.

Democrats have never nominated a candidate who lost 11 consecutive contests, as Clinton has since Feb. 5. Turning back the Obama tide is a mathematical improbability, given the Democratic practice of apportioning delegates by popular vote. To even narrow Obama's lead in pledged delegates, Clinton has to win the next two delegate-rich states of Texas and Ohio on March 4 by wide margins.

That's unlikely to happen. Clinton's leads in those two must-win states, in double digits as recently as a week ago, have since shrivelled; in Texas, the New York senator is now tied with Obama. The last delegate-rich state, Pennsylvania, doesn't vote until April 24.

That gives McCain a two-month head start in developing a plan of attack that has already begun and is focused, tellingly, on Obama.

The media already have written Clinton off, with daily questions about why she is determined to stay in a race she can't win.

Typical of losing campaigns, Clinton campaign coverage is now dominated by obituaries dwelling on the candidate's misjudgements, overpaid and inept advisers, and misspent funds ($1,200 on Dunkin' Donuts runs in January).

Clinton will need so-called "superdelegates," party brass who account for about 20 per cent of total delegates, to put her over the top. She's also fighting to restore the voting rights of delegates in key states Florida and Michigan, which defied a Democratic National Committee edict not to hold their contests early. Clinton won both uncontested primaries.

The protracted backroom deal-making by which Clinton would be required to secure the nomination – culminating in a floor fight over the disputed Florida and Michigan delegations at the Democratic National Convention in Denver in August – would yield an outcome widely regarded as illegitimate, a trampling of party regulars by the party establishment and the Clinton machine.

A battle to the finish with Clinton emerging victorious would divide Democrats in a year in which their prospects of winning the White House have seldom been brighter.

The unprecedented number of alienated youths that Obama has brought into politics, along with countless other Democrats and independents, would likely withhold their donations, volunteer efforts and even their votes in the November election.

With her acute mastery of policy and 35 years of political experience, Clinton is one of the strongest candidates to seek the presidency.

Her campaign didn't anticipate, and has not been able to overpower, an Obama candidacy that has become a movement, one that is less about traditional malcontents – the politics of boomer pols like Clinton – than a new unity in tackling challenges like climate change and nuclear proliferation that obviously require communal action.

This year also marks the beginning of the end of "identity politics," narrow appeals to African Americans, "soccer moms" and white Southern males, an overdue transformation led by a Kenyan-Kansan educated in Jakarta, multiracial Hawaii, New York and Boston, whose formative career years were spent as a community organizer working with poor blacks and Hispanics in Chicago – America's first "Benetton" candidate, as The New Republic's Leon Wieseltier has labelled Obama.

There has been talk among Clinton's peers in the Senate about her attractiveness as a future majority leader. She also has been mooted as an ideal Supreme Court nominee, a guardian of causes that liberals hold dear.

But nothing like that is in prospect if Clinton holds to her current course, jeopardizing her party in a contest for the White House that is the Democrats to lose. A graceful exit now would not be the first time a Clinton has had to lower his or her expectations, and emerge the better for it.

David Olive writes frequently about business and politics.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

A choice must be made. Deep down, though, you don't want to accept a certain responsibility. That's absolutely fine – provided that you openly acknowledge exactly what it is that you really want versus what you'd prefer to avoid.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

The sky suggests that where your intellect can't guide you, your instinct can. Lately, it has been virtually impossible to get in touch with it. Yet it is there, speaking to you in barely audible whispers. Listen carefully today.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Patience is required. A spot of sagacity would help, too. You know this but are tempted to ignore it. You are, after all, dealing with a pressing matter. Mercury has held you back for your own good. Happily, this period of frustration is about to end.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Surprising information has surfaced and the final decision about what to do with it must be yours alone. It is your heart that needs to be consulted, not your social rule book or your inner arbiter of acceptable behaviour. Do what you must.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Friday, February 22, 2008

Toronto prices up 78% to average of $376,236 in 10 years

Canada's real estate boom turns 10 years old
Toronto prices up 78% to average of $376,236
February 22, 2008

business reporter

The past decade has been one of the best on record for residential real estate in the Toronto area.

While the question remains whether the next decade will even come close, historically, home buyers have never had such a prolonged period of rising home prices, according to a study released yesterday by ReMax.

Prices of resale homes from 1997 to 2007 increased by 78 per cent for a 5.9 per cent compounded annual rate of return, according to the real estate firm. Unit sales were also 61 per cent higher in 2007 over 1997.

"The Canadian real estate market has surprised a lot of people, especially given the challenges we've faced from a high-tech meltdown, the 9/11 crisis, SARS and a credit crunch south of the border," says ReMax spokeperson Christine Martysiewicz. "Over the past 10 years, real estate has shown incredible resilience."

The run-up in prices is the longest sustained increase in house prices in recent history, the realtor says.

The average price of a home sold in Toronto in 1997 was $211,307. That has risen steadily every year, reaching $376,236 at the end of 2007.

ReMax says good economic growth and consumer confidence, fuelled by low interest rates, created the buoyant conditions.

Immigration has also played a major role, with the Toronto census metropolitan area increasing by 20 per cent over that period to more than 5 million.

But the impact of increased property taxes and a slowdown of the economy could have a significant impact this year.

"You may get some decent returns moving forward, but you don't have the same conditions moving into the next decade as the last," says Derek Holt, an economist at the Royal Bank of Canada. "We are past the peak in terms of expectations and the drivers behind them."

Holt says pent up demand from early this decade has been largely satisfied as the market moves to "the cooling side of the slope. We will revert closer back to long-term averages."

The last up-cycle in the '80s was actually more dramatic, with prices rising from an average of $76,762 in 1983 to $146,965 in 1989 – a 93 per cent gain – before crashing. Prices fell by 28 per cent over a six-year period before turning around in 1997. Few predicted the length or depth of the current cycle.

One clear difference over the past decade is at the upper end of the market. In 1997, million-dollar homes were extremely rare, with only 175 homes exchanging hands for $1 million or more. Last year 2,309 such homes were sold.

ReMax says many of those homes are in non-traditional neighbourhoods. For instance, a detached home in the modest community of Leaside that sold for $470,000 in 1997 sold again (after renovations) in 2007 for $1.55 million.

The past 10 years has also seen a rise, to 35 per cent from 30 per cent, in condominiums as a percentage of the resale market.

Still, to put things into perspective, Toronto didn't even make it in the top 10 markets nationally in terms of price appreciation over the past decade.

Edmonton was the hottest market, with a 203 per cent increase in prices – or 11.7 per cent compounded annually. Next was Calgary, with an increase of 189 per cent, for an 11.1 per cent annual return.

Canada-wide, house prices were up 98.7 per cent, or 7.1 per cent annually, which put Toronto below the national level.

However, ReMax doesn't factor in inflation, which averaged 2.3 per cent over that 10-year period, which would have substantially eaten into returns.

ReMax, the most bullish forecaster, sees houses rising by 5 per cent this year. But other analysts are forecasting anywhere from a 3 to 5 per cent increase.

The big unknown is how much of an impact the slowdown in the U.S. economy, which buys 80 per cent of Canadian exports, will have on our domestic economy. House prices in the U.S. have tanked spectacularly.

Economists are now nervously looking south to see what kind of an impact that may have on the Canadian real estate market.

Building permits in the U.S. dropped 3 per cent in January, and housing starts likely have further to fall. The first two weeks of February have also been harsh on the Toronto market with a 14 per cent drop in sales.

The Difference Between Having Guts And Balls

There is a medical distinction. We've all heard about people having
guts or balls, but do you really know the difference between them? In an
effort to keep you informed, the definitions are listed below:

GUTS .........Is arriving home late after a night out with the guys,
being met by your wife with a broom, and having the guts to ask, "Are you
still cleaning, or are you flying somewhere?"

BALLS .........Is coming home late after a night out with the guys,
smelling of perfume and beer, lipstick on your collar, slapping your wife on
the butt and having the balls to say, "You're next, fatty."

I hope this clears up any confusion on the definitions.

Medically speaking, there is no difference in the outcomes, since
both result in sudden death.

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

Brave action is called for to sort out a situation or an arrangement that is in danger of falling apart. Whatever and wherever it is, you are sure to come through magnificently, providing you move quickly and boldly.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

An irksome scenario needs to be resolved., but you don't seem able to do anything about it. By all conventional ways of looking at the situation, you are correct. A crazy new idea, though, will bring a solution right out of the blue.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

You'll have little luck trying to make sense of a someone's incoherent ramblings. A harsh link between Venus and Saturn has caused tension in this relationship, but it's nothing that can't be overcome.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

The only thing missing in your life is inspiration. The full moon has enlivened your senses and life will soon offer you a colourful palette. A big idea is starting to form.

Read Phil Booth at or at

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Suspected dog thief gets bail, reward returned

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

Much may be out of your control, but there are some factors that you definitely can alter. A difficult change that has taken place will eventually prove good. What looks like a serious problem is actually a blessing in disguise.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

Some say that goldfish have five-second memories, which allow them to go round and round in their tiny bowls without getting bored. This is not unlike a saga that keeps repeating itself in your life. Today brings a chance to ensure that, this time, it has a different outcome.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

After making a decision, it can prove offensive if someone calls it into question. But good advice can come from the strangest sources, so be open-minded. Something very useful will come to your attention, even if it annoys you at first.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Sagacity sometimes has to be borrowed. Do not hesitate to take the recommendation of a certain someone whose judgment is usually good. Though the decision you face is daunting, this person knows which alternative is worth taking.

Read Phil Booth at

Suspected dog thief gets bail, reward returned

Bert Clark plays with his dog, Huckleberry, on Feb. 18, 2008.
Police urge 2 others believed to be involved to turn themselves in
February 21, 2008

Staff Reporter

Two men facing charges in a bizarre dognapping plot made brief separate court appearances yesterday afternoon, as police urged two other individuals believed to be involved to turn themselves in.

The dog's owner, Bert Clark, had offered a $15,000 reward for the safe return of the dog. Police said yesterday money had been returned to him.

Richard Cassibo, 54, of Toronto, was granted bail yesterday as his daughter and father looked on and appeared visibly flustered. A heavyset man, Cassibo – wearing a green shirt and brown jacket – appeared tired as he heard the charges against him and his co-accused, Andrew Footit, 31, whose bail hearing was put over to today.

Both men are facing charges of conspiracy to commit an indictable offence, corruptly taking a reward for the recovery of goods, and possession of property obtained by crime and fraud. Cassibo also faces a charge of public mischief.

Cassibo's daughter said little about her father's release.

"We have no comment right now, because frankly, as far as I am concerned, this is nobody's business," she said as she guided her grandfather away.

The judge ordered a publication ban on the proceedings, citing an ongoing criminal investigation. Police also said they were looking for two young people who they believe were involved in the dognapping.

"We know who you are," Det. Robert Ermacora said at a news conference yesterday. "Speak to your lawyers and turn yourselves over." The detective said he couldn't reveal how the youths were connected to Cassibo and Footit.

The charges against Cassibo and Footit stem from an incident on Saturday when police were alerted to a theft of Huckleberry, a chocolate Lab, outside a building near Yonge and Roxborough Sts. According to police, a dog walker tied the dog outside the building on Yonge St. When she returned, the dog was gone.

The accused men contacted Clark, the owner, returned the dog and were given a cheque

for $15,000.

- With files from Michele Henry

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

The moment you take things less seriously you'll notice how a once troublesome scenario shows signs of improvement.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

According to numerous celestial deductions, you will soon see some positive results. Give your mind and body a rest. You're as ready as can be.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Nobody knows just how deep your fatigue is. With extra sleep today, you will be able to accomplish three times as much tomorrow.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Try laying down the law. You won't get your own way all the time, but you'll get more of it than you normally do.

Read Phil Booth at

Bride asks if Dominican wedding was a fake
Amanda Kusick and Ryan Greene don’t know if their October wedding in the Dominican Republic is legal.
Local couples fear they may have been duped in fake wedding scam in Dominican Republic
February 19, 2008

Staff Reporter

Amanda Kusick and Ryan Greene of Toronto got married on an island paradise in the wedding of their dreams – but the aftermath is shaping up to be a potential nightmare.

Against the backdrop of a tropical sunset, dressed in an ivory strapless gown and flip-flops, Kusick exchanged vows with Greene last October as a local judge presided in Spanish. It all took place in the garden gazebo at a resort in the Dominican Republic.

They signed the registry in front of 14 friends and later retired to the honeymoon suite. The trip cost $6,000, including the $2,000 wedding package.

Every detail was perfect, except one – their wedding may have been fake, part of an elaborate scam in which bogus officials are suspected of colluding with hotels to swindle foreign couples.

"We wanted a simple beach wedding. The weather was beautiful. Everything went off without a hitch. Now to think that it might not even be valid is absolutely devastating. Was it all a farce?" asked Kusick, 32.

"I'm just hoping I'm overreacting because, if I'm not, it was just a big fancy party and I was a pretend bride."

More than 200 Canadian and British couples who tied the knot at resorts in eastern Dominican Republic may not be officially married, investigators there say.

Four employees of the government office that oversees civil marriages have been detained though no charges have yet been filed. A probe started after the office received requests for marriage certificates not listed on the books.

Dominican Republic consular and embassy staff in Ontario could not be reached yesterday because of the Family Day holiday.

It's not clear which resorts were involved but all appear to be in the Punta Cana region.

Kusick was among several people who contacted the Toronto Star after the story broke Sunday, frantic to find out more details. All were still waiting for their marriage certificates to arrive; many were too embarrassed to have their names published.

"My wife, though she could still be my fiancée, is a wreck" since hearing the news, said one man. "It's a shock, especially since I have to find out in a newspaper instead of someone calling me from down there."

All told similar stories, of online research and friends' recommendations leading them to Punta Cana, of mailing documents, including passport and birth certificate copies, to the Dominican consulate in Toronto or embassy in Ottawa, and of resorts with busy, well-oiled and lucrative wedding operations.

The couples each paid $455 in registration fees.

Kusick was told her marriage certificate from Oct. 26 would arrive in eight to 12 weeks. Calls and emails to her wedding planner have gone unanswered.

John Bayliss and Liza Taylor of Milton married July 10 at a different resort and, seven months later, they are also still waiting for a marriage certificate.

"I'm still hoping that things are just delayed and our wedding was legitimate," Bayliss said.

"There were 26 people in our wedding party. If this wedding was a sham, all of us got duped. The worst part is not knowing," he said, adding his wife is upset and in a state of disbelief.

Matthew Lalonde and Charlene Marleau of Ottawa are more nonchalant at finding out they may not be married, despite having a ceremony Nov. 1 at a beach hotel.

It's just one more wrinkle in a trip down south that included landing in a hurricane and lost luggage.

"It was a time to remember all right," said Lalonde with a chuckle.

"We're not freaking out over it or anything. It's just a piece of paper right?"

With files from Philip Mascoll and Associated Press

Monday, February 18, 2008

The Scope Of Things Today

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

One moment all is going well, then bam, it all fizzles out. Destiny likes to test our resolve. You're in luck. All will fall in place – and just at the right time, too.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

You can sense that something unusual is in the air. A long-awaited change, for which you have been yearning, is rapidly approaching.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Certain financial considerations will improve providing you remain positive and self-assured.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

Your imagination and youthful dreams are calling out for fulfilment. Uranus will help you. Vast improvements will take shape as a result.


Wet day aids dig-out
Ron Bull/ Toronto Star
A city crew works on Gough Avenue in Toronto Saturday Feb. 16, 2008 to remove snow.
2,000 workers, 83 crews, 600 trucks digging out many clogged arteries
February 17, 2008

Staff Reporters
Freezing rain turned to rain in the city this afternoon but driving conditions remained treacherous and police urged drivers to stay off the roads if possible.

The Ontario Provincial Police reported 197 accidents today between 6 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.

All eastbound lanes of Hwy. 401 at Avenue Rd. were reopened by 2 p.m. after being closed for a minor collision.

"We shut it down mainly for the safety of the person in the accident and the officers on the scene," said Const. Dave Woodford of the OPP.

Roads iced with freezing rain caused crashes and backups over much of the GTA and surrounding area.

“Coming down the 400, it’s very foggy. If there were a collision in front, drivers wouldn’t be able to stop. People aren’t driving slowly enough for the icy conditions," said Woodford.

Another road mishap on Hwy. 407 and Kennedy Rd. ended with a car rolling over, Woodford noted. "There’s no need for that. If you’re driving out there like an idiot, you’re going to get caught and you’re going to get charged."

He suggested staying indoors. "If you don’t have to go out, stay off the road. Highways are busy for a Sunday. It takes time for salters to get to a location, especially with the traffic."

Numerous collisions were also reported on southern Ontario roads into the Niagara region.

"It’s not just a snowstorm, it’s everything mixed in at a time so drivers have to deal with rain, freezing conditions, a bit of everything. The best thing is to take it easy and slow down."

Woodford urged drivers to make sure they have plenty of windshield washer fluid and that their car lights are working, and to always keep a safe distance from other vehicles.

The good news is today’s rain is expected to help the city with its snow cleanup plans.

Weather officials say the temperature will rise steadily throughout the day and the city and surrounding areas may see 15 to 20 millimetres of rain. According to one forecaster, we could set a temperature record as a warm front passes briefly over the region.

Kevin Witt, a meteorologist with, says we could reach 9C by 3 p.m., surpassing the 8C record set in 1984.

The warmth won’t last long though. There will be flurries tomorrow morning as a colder front sends the temperature back below zero. “It’s going to be pretty brisk,” Witt said, adding that Wednesday will be the coldest day this week.

Bryan Tugwood, a severe weather meteorologist for Environment Canada says today’s relatively warm temperatures and rain should help the city with it’s post-storm cleanup.

“It won’t get rid of all our snow, but it’ll erode a lot of it,” said Tugwood.

City workers were spending the weekend digging out from under the 70 centimetres of snow that have accumulated on side streets over the last two weeks.

As part of the effort, the Gardiner Expressway westbound was closed for part of the morning.

The city was using snow blowers to munch through snow banks, while dump trucks trails behind to catch the mess.

Most of those snow blowers haven’t been used since January 1999 when 79.6 centimetres of snow accumulated on the city’s side streets. That was the winter when former Toronto mayor Mel Lastman called the army for help.

Quartarone says the city’s snow blowers are so old, they keep breaking down.

"It really slows down the operation," said Quartarone.

The city has split its snow removal force into 83 crews, dispatching them to residential streets across town at a total cost of some $20 million.

On several streets, snow removal crews had to work around abandoned cars despite posted street signs and flyers that were delivered to homes, notifying residents 48 hours in advance to remove their parked cars. As a result, many streets remain only partly cleared.

"Wedo need people’s help," Mayor David Miller said yesterday. "Clear your walk and move your cars. There are orange signs up on the streets where the snow’s going to be removed. We can do more streets faster if you move your cars."

Miller said he hoped the removal crews would have 30 per cent of the city’s residential streets cleared by tomorrow evening.

"The rest of the snow will be removed, subject to weather, within the next 10 to 14 days," he said.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Clinton, Obama Spar Over Issues At Dinner Party

Clinton, Obama Spar Over Issues At Dinner Party
February 17, 2008

As both Democratic candidates look ahead to Tuesday's contests, they sparred over the issues at a party dinner Saturday night.

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama gave back-to-back speeches at the Founder's Day Dinner in Milwaukee. Speaking first, Clinton accused Obama of copying some of her economic plans.

And she said Obama has no plan for universal health care. She also renewed her call for Obama to meet her in a debate before Tuesday's primary in the state.

Obama told the crowd any uninsured American who wanted health care would have it. He also said Clinton's criticisms undermine people's trust in politicians.

Clinton and Obama both stayed clear of the Sunday morning talk shows, where their campaigns took center stage.

Senator Chuck Schumer was on "Meet the Press." He says despite recent momentum favoring Obama, New York's other Senator won't leave the race anytime soon.

"Don't count Hillary Clinton out because she is one fighter,” said Schumer. “She has tremendous knowledge, tremendous experience, and I think when you look at it, Barack is a great candidate, but Hillary by her experience is the better candidates and the better president."

Schumer added he hopes to see his party unite behind the eventual nominee whether it is Obama or Clinton.

On the Republican side, former President George Bush will formally endorse John McCain Monday. McCain picked up 50 delegates from Michigan and Louisiana.

At least 32 of Louisiana's 47 delegates say they intend to vote for McCain at the national convention. And Michigan Republicans say most of their delegates will support McCain now that Mitt Romney has dropped out of the contest. This gives McCain about 903 delegates of the 1192 delegates are needed to secure the nomination.

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee remains in the race but far behind in the delegate count. He trails with 245 delegates.

Sunday morning, McCain said he's not counting Huckabee out of the race just yet either.

Appearing on ABC News' "This Week," McCain also spoke on the economy. He says there's a long list of things that can be done to improve the country's financial outlook, with cutting back on spending near the top of that list.

He blasted his opponents for supporting spending, which he says has only served to weaken the public's confidence in the economy.

"The American people see their tax dollars being frittered away in away in wasteful and unnecessary spending, which by the, Senator Obama has engaged in heavily and Senator Clinton has engaged in heavily,” said McCain.

Some moves he suggested are lowering interest rates and reducing corporate tax rates which he says are the second highest in the world.

Canada Pension Plan sustainable for 75 years

Leo (July 23 — Aug. 22)

You have been doing your darndest to dodge a conflict. This waxing moon will bring a change of attitude that will put you in a much stronger position.

Gemini (May 21 — June 21)

The sense of urgency you feel will one day seem irrelevant. A process of improvement will bring swift and liberating results.

Scorpio (Oct. 24 — Nov. 22)

Your investigative skills may not be up to the standard required to crack big city crimes, but you have a good inkling about a secret agenda.

Pisces (Feb. 20 — March 20)

If you're not happy, a decision can be modified without major drawbacks. A change of mind shouldn't be interpreted as weakness.

Read Phil Booth at

Canada Pension Plan sustainable for 75 years and beyond, thanks to Paul Martin's measures

Feb 07, 2008 04:30 AM
Beth Marlin
Special to the Star

Relax. There's no reason to worry about your CPP during these volatile days of wildly fluctuating stock markets and the subprime mortgage crisis.

The CPP is in the safe hands – its $121.3 billion carefully vested on behalf of 17 million working and retired Canadians and for generations to come.

But that wasn't always the case.

Canadians have former prime minister Paul Martin to thank for the restored viability of the country's state-administered pension plan, says Bill Robson, president and CEO of the C.D. Howe Institute.

"He's (Martin's) never been properly recognized for this," says Robson. "The reforms have worked very well so far."

In 1996, the CPP was headed for certain disaster, taking in only $11 billion in contributions that year, while paying out a whopping $17 billion in benefits. With large numbers of aging baby boomers set to retire by 2011, actuaries projected Canada's pay-as-you-go fund would be unable to fully pay benefits by 2015.

It was Martin who had the prescience and political fortitude to launch revolutionary CPP reforms – dramatically increasing contribution rates, reducing some benefits and separating CPP monies away from government assets for investment by an independent board – and who was able to commandeer the necessary co-operation of most provinces. Parliament passed new legislation in late 1997 that took effect in 1998. Quebec has opted to administer its own pension plan, which has not fared as well financially as the CPP.

Since 1997, CPP contributions have gradually increased by 80 per cent, from 5.6 per cent of earnings to a maximum 9.9 per cent, shared equally by employees and their employers.

In 2008, working Canadians and their employers will pay a shared CPP levy of up to 9.9 per cent on earned income up to $44,900, with employees paying a maximum annual levy of $2,049.30 after a personal exemption of $3,500, an amount matched by their employers. Self-employed Canadians must contribute the full levy to a maximum of $4,098.60.

"Canadians have no need to worry," says Ian Dale, a spokesperson for the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, the Toronto-based arms' length agency set up in 1998 to administer the fund independent of political interference.

"The Canada Pension Plan is sustainable for 75 years and beyond, according to the (federal government's) chief actuary. There are all kinds of safeguards in place to make sure these funds are there to pass to pensioners and for investing the fund only for their benefit."

The CPP contribution rate has been capped at 9.9 per cent, with no further increases expected for 75 years, says Dale.

"(The CPP) is self-sustaining at 9.9 per cent of earned income."

In fact, benefits paid out by the CPP are fully funded by incoming contributions, leaving invested funds untouched, until the year 2020.

Further amendments introduced by Bill C-36, which came into force on Jan. 1, 2008, assumes steady-state financing, rather than the prior pay-as-you-go funding to build a reserve equivalent to 58 years of benefit payouts. This pre-funding of the plan by soon-to-retire boomers will ease the burden on upcoming generations, says Dale, noting that the legislative amendments require that any new or increased benefits must also be fully funded.

More importantly, perhaps, Martin's reforms ensured the CPP monies were separated from government assets and managed by an independent investment board.

That means the federal government cannot be tempted to borrow from surplus funds, for instance, as it has done from surplus revenue collected through Employment Insurance premiums or as governments in other countries have done with national pension funds.

As of January 2008, the maximum Canada Pension Plan benefit to someone aged 65 is $884.58. The basic Old Age Security, paid to people 65 years of age and over, will remain unchanged at $502.31 per month.

Guaranteed income supplement for eligible low-income pensioners is $634.02.

While the troubled, stubbornly independent Quebec Pension Plan may well be praying for a financial bailout from the separately managed CPP, as suggested by pundits in recent news reports, the federal reforms mean that is as likely to happen as amending the Constitution – requiring the agreement of two-thirds of 10 provinces, constituting two-thirds of Canada's population.

However, Robson says Canadians must remain vigilant to ensure the monies vested with the CPP don't become politicized.

One of the reasons the Quebec Pension Plan is now in financial difficulty and may not be sustainable at the 9.9 per cent contribution rate, is the province has unwisely used some pension funds to invest in its industrial policy, So far, the CPPIB has made great strides from 1999, when all extra CPP funds were invested only in federal and provincial bonds, earning a steady, but unexciting rate of return significantly lower than returns of stock market indices.

Today, more than half of the fund – 56.5 per cent or $68.5 billion – is invested in stocks of more than 1,900 international and 700 Canadian publicly listed companies, with other investment in private equities, real estate and inflation-linked bonds. For more information on the CPP, go to, the website of the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Have you ever used an Astrologer? Manny Has...

But I'm not Manny but this Astrologer thinks I am...could this reading apply to you as well?
I know I'm not going to Europe...but Mexico well thats the 2 year plan.

This link shows how much of a a psychic fraud Jenny is...same reading multiple suckers

So this is the Free Personal Astrological Reading which you requested from me...

Hello Manny,

I've got all of the information which you sent through to me on the 2 February 2008 and I thank you for that, the details you gave me allowed me to finish your astrological reading and I was so excited about the extra-ordinary results that I felt I had to write to you straight away.

I have just discovered that not only are you soon going to live through an event of great astrological importance but also that you were going to blessed with a period of chance and opportunities. This is very serious Manny, I rarely come accross such vibrant astrological configurations and you can believe what I say because I never express myself in this way lightly.

I must tell you now that I have worked in my chosen professional field for a very long time and it is rare that I feel such a powerful jolt (as I felt for you Manny) when consulting an individual's details for the first time. As soon as I started looking at your details I felt a surge in my knowledge of you and I only can explain it by the creation of a strong psychic connection between us when we first entered into contact. This bond has an enormous advantage for me as I am able to discern exactly what you are feeling at this time. Once I felt so close you to and your feelings at this time I was able to compare and contrast this very personal information to your astrological configuration.

What I am now going to tell you is very important and of course I have checked and double-checked everything before telling you Manny.As I told you earlier I don't advance myself and make such important statements without being first totally sur that everything is entirely accurate.

So here is what is is all about: a Transit period is on the way and you are perfectly positioned to get the very best out of the opportunities it is set to bring . This is very clear in your astrological configuration and to be honest in a very short time indeed you will find yourself in the glare of several powerful astrological influences. These influences will place you in a rare astrological Transit which will not occur again in your skies before a very long time, simply because the planets will not be aligned in this way again for a number of years and above all YOU will not be as PERFECTLY paced to make the most of it all! A great number of opportunities are going to be offered to you. These opportunities are going to have a great impact on your life and here is what comes out of my analysis of your personal configuration:

You can expect some very positive changes on a professional level and most particularly as far as your job is concerned. As a matter of fact your astral configuration shows very clearly that during this period of 72 days you will experience one of the most intense moments of your career. Let me be a little more precise, during this period you will have the possibility of making a stunning victory as far as your job is concerned and you will then be able to reach a new and important turning point in your career. Here are the factors which are most apparent:

- At this stage of the analysis is difficult to say exactly what this victory will be however I can say that it seems to be in relation to negocitations you will make abroad or with a foreign company.

- An important element from your past will participate in this victory and this element may consist of an encounter, a proposition or an affair which was made or took place several months ago and it will now represent an important opportunity for your career.

- This professional evolution will help you make lasting changes to the financial side of your life

During this period you can expect some very positive financial changes in your life. It seems that one very important opportunity will be made to you and this opportunity is linked to an unexpected sum of money. As a matter of fact your astral configuration shows me that this sum of money should allow you to finish a project which you have been thinking about for a long time. 3 main points stand out clearly:

- first of all, you must realize why this period is so important for you and this is simply because these 72 days are linked to a large sum of money
- it seems that this sum of money will help you with your projects, ambitions and investments
- at this stage of my analysis it is difficult to say exactly how you can get hold of this sum of money but it seems that it is linked to a notion of games or lottery. You will certainly gain this sum when you least expect it and this will also be a moment when your natural chance and good luck are boosted to their maximum. This does indicate a win through a game of some sort.

I must insist on the fact that this Transit is going to have an enormous influence and a great importance in your life. You need to be ready to seize all of the opportunities which are going to be open to you during this period as it represents a real chance in your life and for this is is very important that you have some complementary information about this period (where, how, what, when, with who...). This is why I have put a page online especially for you, Manny, where you can ask me to research this information. I know that this is important to you and I also know that this is one of the many reasons that you first contacted me, you must now be sensing that something very important lies ahead for you and you are aware, even unconsciously, that you must get solid help and guidance and skilled advice about this powerful period in your life. You can find this page here:

However before you go to this page I invite you to continue reading this first reading as I have some more important information to tell you about.

Firstly you may be wondering at this point how I can be so passionate about your particular case. Well let me explain a little more about what I felt about you when we first entered into contact and how this has allowed me to know you even better, Manny. I also want to show you how close our bond actually is, all these details that I am about to reveal to you came to me through careful study of your current situation once I experienced this powerfully exciting flash about you. So let me go on and tell you about what I have sensed:

You are aware that you are entering into a different and interesting period in your life, in which certain values will affirm themselves,notably a notion of revitialisation which appears strongly around you even if you often think about the past, as you have done recently. I can also see that you feel more confortable associating with people your own age or younger. I can also see that you seem to appreciate and be happiest when you are near the water and you have a deep affinity for nature and the outdoors. To get back to this notion of revitilisation I can see a connection coming through with Europe or something European and this is most likely concerning a voyage which you must do. I can see a great deal of things in your life which are set to change and a lot of very positive events are going to occur for you.

I know that you have a great deal of qualities and you now have the power now to acccomplish whatever you want to in life. You need only set your goals and aim for what you want. Your unique perspective in life, has been forged from the school of hard knocks and you know deep down inside that you are better for having gone through what you have endured. There is a very strong aura around you and an energy that is truly powerful. I am sensing vibrations from you much more intense than those I experience with most clients. I am even getting a powerful impression now.... you have what might be described almost as a sixth sense, the ability to sense things are about to happen. At times, you have wondered if you might be psychic.

As far as other aspects of your life are concerned, I am getting the distinct sense that you are street smart and you value this ability much more than the classroom smarts that others have. You are a person with fresh and innovative ideas and are not willing to settle for what others tell you. you have to see things for yourself and if you don't like what you see then you will change it. In your relationships with others, you need those around you to be happy and even if these people don't always say it out loud, they see you as something of a wise man, someone who has all the answers. This suits you as although you don't always consciously admit this, deep down inside you need the respect and admiration of others.

We now need to get back to the importance of this Transit period in your life Manny and straight away I should warn you about one particular point. If you do not act in a very decisive manner concerning this period then it is extremely likely that all of these important opportunities will simply pass you by. This sounds simple, and it is. I can help and guide you (in fact I am 100% willing to help you because I feel so strongly that you can benefit greatly from the opportunities of this valuable period) however I need you to be active and open to change during this period. It is YOU who will sense the moments once they arrive, even though I can help you detect and identify them, and it is YOU who will seize them and turn your life around to take in the direction you want to see yourself going.

You now know that this Transit is a very rare event which will not come around again for a very long time to come, the configuration is only perfect for you during a relatively short timespan and it will allow you to reach a decisive turning point in your career and complete a project which you care a lot about by using a sum of money which you did not expect to have. To achieve this it is important that you find yourself in the right place and at the right time to take the right decisions and this is what I want to help you to do with this full, detailed Reading which I tell you about on the link:

I also need to warn you about something which I have already seen with certain other people who simply wait for events to occur. I must take a note of seriousness here because it is very important what I am going to tell you.

I know through my extensive professional experience that people who are aware that such a Transit will soon occur yet who sit by and do nothing about it (because they consider that they can guess which actions are needed and when), inevitably miss out on the full impact of the period. Waiting for events to happen is NOT the way to go, you must see why this is so true. You need a professional astrologer can read your Skies correctly to bring you the information you truly need concerning your Transit of 72 days because once you are armed with this kind of information you will be ready to act and change your life for the better. To sum up, Manny you need precise and deep knowledge of all of the implications of this Transit in order to get the very best out of it's chances and opportunities.This Transit is too significant and too important not to try and get all chances over on your side.

I must mention that I am not the only professional who could help you. You may of course consult with someone a little closer to your home or with an astrologer you are already familiar with. This person should be able to help you in exactly the same manner as I would be able to. The most important thing is that you have the information you need and that you get this information very soon because the Transit will come along much sooner than you think.

However I want you to know that as far as I am concerned I am also 100% ready to help you Manny. I have told you about the details I can offer you; I have a wealth of important and exciting information to share with you and I can give you full details on the following points:

More precisely, As far as your professional career is concerned. I will tell you:

- why this period will be one of the most favorable moments of your career
- what this victory is and how you can acheive it in your job
- when and how this victory will take place and what it will change for you
- what these 'foreign affairs' are and how they will surface during your Transit period
- how these affairs will affect your work
- what this important element from your past is and why it will be such an important opportunity
- what changes you can expect financially
- How the situation will change your work situation in the average to long term
- what you can generally expect to happen in your job
- what pit-falls you must avoid in the Future
- how your finances will evolve

I will determine for you all of the information which you will need concerning the financial developments which you can expect during this Transit and how this sum of money will change your life. I will tell you:

- why this period is more important than any other period
- what financial changes you can really expect
- how this sum of money will come to you
- how you can grab hold and keep it
- and I will also give you a lot of other information which will help you to get all the chance over on your side so that you can make the most of this valuable opportunity

Here is again the web page where you can request my help, Manny. As soon as I receive your confirmation that you want me to work on your reading I can get straight to work on your complete analysis. On this same page I have also given you a link to some testimonials from other customers that I have also helped through my clairvoyance and astrology.

Here is the link:

Have a good day and speak to you soon,

Your friend and astrologer,


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

largest co-ordinated child porn investigation in Ontario history

Police Outline Details Of Largest Child Porn Probe In Ont. History

Tuesday February 12, 2008

Police outlined the details of the largest co-ordinated child porn investigation in Ontario history during a Tuesday morning press conference. Twenty-two people have been arrested in connection with the ambitious probe, which began in January and involved 25 search warrants in 16 communities across Ontario. A tota? of 73 criminal charges have been laid. Among those charged are a woman and a Young Offender.

"Today's successful announcement has taken weeks of legwork by dozens of members of the provincial strategy to protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation," said O.P.P. Commissioner Julian Fantino. "The most fundamental responsibility of any society is to protect its children. Every child has a right to be nurtured and to be safe, and we as a society have a duty to ensure that that happens."

"Child pornography is the sexual abuse of children," he added. "A brutal crime committed by despicable predators.

"Every image of child pornography represents the irrefutable evidence of a child being brutalized and it's not just about impersonal, abstract images."

Fantino cited the increased use of the internet as a prevalent threat to young people, and urged further education on how to use the technology in a safe, responsible manner.

"It is appropriate that we are here today making this announcement on Safe Internet Day, a day recognized in 43 countries worldwide, a day designed to highlight the need to make the internet a safe and useful tool for our children to access for both educational and personal use.

"In far too many cases the misuse of the internet continues to pose a threat to children, parents and all law-abiding decent people in our society, including the police. The production and distribution of pornography, the luring of young people by pedophiles for their own deviant purposes and the proliferation of internet sites where pictures of just about every imaginable kind of abuse of children including infants can be accessed by anyone, is a major concern to police agencies worldwide."

News of the arrests came in tandem with the findings of startling study that revealed more than 15,000 people in Ontario actively use their computers to distribute child pornography.

The study discovered that in Canada, images involving child porn have been traced to more than 205,000 unique computer addresses.

In Ontario alone, more than 63,000 unique IP addresses have been linked to the illegal images.

Fantino closed out the emotional press conference by reminding all citizens of their duties to protect children. He also had a stern warning for perpetrators, and hinted that the courts needs to take a stronger stance against those who view, trade, or make child pornography.

"We all have a responsibility in this matter. If anyone comes across child pornography or suspects that a child is being abused in any way, they are morally and ethically obligated to report the abuse to the police.

"The provincial strategy will stop at nothing to hunt down child predators and eliminate the threat they pose to our children and our communities. Fair warning to pedophiles: You can run but you can't hide. And sooner or later, we will identify you. We will arrest you and we'll bring you to justice."

"Now, let's see what the courts do with these cases."

How To Protect Your Kids From Internet Predators

Charges are as follows:

    -   Jay Hutchinson, age 24, of Hamilton, 1 count of Make Available Child
Pornography, 1 count of Possession of Child Pornography, to appear in
provincial court at 45 Main St., Hamilton, Ontario on Feb. 12, 2008.

- Doug MacDonald, age 50, of Ottawa, 1 count of Possession of Child
Pornography, 1 count of Make Available Child Pornography, to appear
in provincial court at 161 Elgin St., Ottawa, Ontario on February 12,
     -   Edwin Morris, age 63, of Burlington, 1 count of Possession of Child
Pornography, 1 count of Access Child Pornography, 1 count Make
Available Child Pornography, to appear in provincial court at 491
Steeles Ave., Milton, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Michael E. Shipley, age 31, of Milton, Ontario, 1 count of Possession
of Child Pornography, 1 count of Access Child Pornography, 1 count
Make Available Child Pornography, to appear in provincial court at
491 Steeles Ave., Milton, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Thomas Webb, age 56, of Brantford, Ontario, 1 count of Possession of
Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child Pornography, to
appear in provincial court at 44 Queen Street, Brantford, Ontario on
February 12, 2008.

- Wendy Allison Potter, age 28, of Whitby, Ontario, 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child
Pornography, to appear in provincial court at 242 King St. E.,
Oshawa, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Harry James Aseltine, age 57, of Oshawa, Ontario, 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child
Pornography, 1 count of Possession of a Controlled Substance, to
appear in provincial court at 242 King St. E., Oshawa, Ontario on
February 12, 2008.

- Michael Cherry, age 37, of London, Ontario, 4 counts of Possession of
Child Pornography, 3 counts of Making Available Child Pornography, to
appear in provincial court at 80 Dundas St., London, Ontario on
February 12, 2008.

- Nathan Armstrong, age, 27, of Peterborough, Ontario, 2 counts of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child
Pornography, to appear in provincial court in Peterborough, Ontario
on February, 12, 2008.

- Matthew McDougall, age 20, of Red Lake, Ontario, 2 counts of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count of Making Available Child
Pornography, to appear in provincial court at 115 Howey St., Red
Lake, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Matthew Brunton, age 22, of Cornwall, Ontario, 1 count of Possession
of Child Pornography, 1 count of Access Child Pornography, appeared
for bail hearing at provincial court, 29 Second St. E., Cornwall,
Ontario on February 11, 2008.

- Guilio Carere, age 46, of Guelph, Ontario, 1 count of Possession of
Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child Pornography, 1 count
of Possession of a Controlled Substance, appeared for bail hearing in
provincial court at 36 Wyndham St. S., Guelph, Ontario on
February 11, 2008.

- Keith Kamenz, age 29, of Guelph, Ontario, 1 count of Possession of
Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child Pornography, appeared
for bail hearing at provincial court, 36 Wyndham St. S., Guelph,
Ontario on February 11, 2008.

- Lawrence Bouillon, age 44, of Espanola, Ontario, 2 counts Possession
of Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child Pornography, 1
count Access Child Pornography, 1 count Possession of a controlled
substance, to appear in provincial court at 155 Elm Street, Sudbury,
Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Eric Brown, age 25, of Brampton, Ontario, 1 count Possession of Child
Pornography, 1 count of Make Available Child Pornography, 1 count of
Access Child Pornography, to appear in provincial court at 7755
Hurontario St., Brampton, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Michael Avison, age 33, of Mississauga, Ontario, 1 count Possession
of Child Pornography, 1 count of Make Available Child Pornography, 1
? count of Access Child Pornography, to appear in provincial court at
7755 Hurontario St., Brampton, Ontario on February 12, 2008.

- Stephen Burritt, age 39, of Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count Make Available Child
Pornography, 1 count of Distribution of Child Pornography, 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography For The Purpose Of Distribution, 5
counts of Unsafe Storage of Firearm, 1 count of Unsafe Storage of
Ammunition, 1 count of Knowingly Posess A Prohibited Firearm Without
Authorization, 1 count of Possession of Prohibited Firearm.

- Karl Herman, age 64, of Cambridge, Ontario, 1 count of Possession of
Child Pornography, 1 count of Make Available Child Pornography, to
appear in provincial court at 200, Frederick St., Kitchener, Ontario
on Feb. 12, 2008.

- Glenn Albert Laurin, age 45, of Toronto, Ontario, 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography, 1 count of Make Available Child
Pornography, to appear in provincial court tomorrow for bail hearing
on February 11, 2008 in provincial court at 444 Yonge St., Toronto,

- Leonard Legros, age 60, of Ottawa, Ontario, 1 count of Possession of
Child Pornography, 1 count of Making Available Child Pornography, to
appear in provincial court at 161 Elgin St., Ottawa, Ontario, on Feb.
12, 2008.

- One young offender from Hamilton, Ontario who cannot be named under
the Youth Criminal Justice Act has also been charged with 1 count of
Possession of Child Pornography.

Additional arrests are pending and the investigation is continuing.

City TV News

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