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27 May 2008

14 May 2008 was the 14th day of the eleventh month of the 2nd year of Canadian national consciousness rising to invincibility, as indicated by the following press reports:

14 May 2008

The Canadian Press - MPs pass bill to speed native land claims (13 May 2008) A bill to speed up native land claims passed the House of Commons Tuesday. All parties endorsed the new Specific Claims Tribunal Act, which must now clear the Senate to become law. Only cases worth C$150 million or less will be eligible to go before a panel of impartial judges if talks are stalled after three years. The mediators' binding rulings will be final when negotiations fail. Indian Affairs Minister Chuck Strahl called the bill—co-written by the national Assembly of First Nations—'a great step forward. 'We want to speed it up,' he said of a discredited system that the government itself has described as broken. It can take two decades or more to settle a single case and there are almost 800 backlogged claims. 'You spend more money on legal fees than you actually do on the claim and settlement,' said the minister. Only a handful of cases are worth more than C$150 million while roughly half are worth C$3 million or less, he added. The specific claims legislation would commit C$250 million a year for 10 years to beef up cash available for compensation without forcing the tribunal to seek additional approvals. 'And that gives them a lot of freedom to do the right thing in a quick manner,' Strahl said. Sweeping comprehensive land claims, such as those affecting much of British Columbia and Ontario, will be dealt with separately.

The Toronto Star - Economy fine, Flaherty says (12 May 2008) Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, in an address in Toronto, stressed that no one is predicting a decline in output in Canada. 'Keep in mind: Canadian projections are on the positive side of the ledger.' He said Canada continues to have low unemployment, tame consumer-price inflation and balanced government books in Ottawa. 'Canada's housing market remains solid,' he said.

From a Canadian Press report on this: Flaherty also spoke positively about the latest jobs numbers, released last Friday, calling them 'promising'. Canada's employment grew once again in April with the addition of 19,200 jobs, while the trade surplus jumped to C$5.5 billion in March, the highest in almost a year. 'There's good reason for all Canadians to be confident. Our economy continues to grow in all regions of Canada,' Flaherty said.

The Canadian Press - Economy showing signs that worst is already past: economists (14 May 2008) The loonie [popular name for the Canadian dollar] once again worth about the same as the US greenback; employment, exports, and consumer spending continuing strong—what is happening to Canada's year of economic discontent? Some economists are entertaining the notion that the worst may already be in the past. Among things being cited by economists are strong income growth and employment, no real credit crunch, rising equity prices, a surprising trade surplus, and a healthy housing market.

The Canadian Economic Press on growth of new home prices in March (12 May 2008) On an annual basis, new housing prices rose 6.1% across Canada between March 2007 and March 2008. Saskatoon had the fastest growing prices in Canada. Year-over-year prices grew 46.2% between March 2007 and March 2008. Record price increases were seen in Nova Scotia as a result of a strengthening economy. Halifax homebuyers paid 12.8% more in March 2008 than they did in March 2007.

The Financial Post - Joining the green charge (14 May 2008) One of Victoria, BC's oldest law firms, Horne Coupar Barristers and Solicitors took an innovative step for a law firm late last year by joining One Per Cent For The Planet (FTP), an environmental fund-raising initiative. 'There is consciousness-raising that is constantly going on with respect to the planet and this is a way for everyone in business to make their contribution. It's a fairly simple concept and if everybody signs on, then we can make a huge collective difference,' said Mark Horne, partner at Horne Coupar. Members of the FTP business community contribute 1% of their gross revenue to approved environmental groups. 'It's been overwhelmingly positive from clients basically saying, 'Good on you, it's the right thing to do,'' said Mr Horne. The partnership allows companies to steer their funding options. Launched in 2002, FTP has more than 800 members worldwide.

The Financial Post - Forestry has a bright, green future (13 May 2008) Avrim Lazar - Avrim Lazar is the president and chief executive of the Forest Products Association of Canada. How can there be any cause for optimism during what is arguably the worst time in the industry's history? Because natural resources that are produced sustainably will be the most prized products in tomorrow's global economy. Illegal logging and widespread deforestation are global scourges that have not been stopped or even significantly slowed.

In Canada, they have chosen a different path. They regenerate their forests promptly, regulate the industry and invite outside scrutiny of their forest practices. The market reward for these environmental choices will grow each year as the world increasingly rejects buying from illegal loggers and countries with unchecked deforestation. The world is rapidly moving to a place where demand for forest products will have to be met by countries that can produce those products sustainably and without displacing land that could otherwise be used to grow food or fuel. Few countries are as well-positioned as Canada to meet this demand in this way. And therein lies the reason for great confidence, not just in the forest industry but in Canada's overall economic prospects in the new global economy.

Canwest News Service - Canadian companies stamping out fraud and corruption (14 May 2008) Canadian companies are squelching bribery and corruption, with not a single incident reported in the past two years among 80 per cent of North American firms surveyed by Ernst and Young in their 10th annual global fraud survey. That number surpasses by 15 per cent levels achieved by their global counterparts and is a function of improved detection and prevention mechanisms by Canadian companies, said Bob Ferguson, a partner in Ernst & Young's Fraud Investigation and Dispute Services practice.

The Montreal Gazette - Time for free trade with Europe has come: Charest (13 May 2008) Quebec Premier Jean Charest said free trade with the European Union is an idea whose time has come, in an interview on the eve of a major speech in Ottawa to increase support for the proposal. 'I think there are good chances this will go ahead,' he said. Moreover, the deal Charest would like to see would be one of the widest-ranging deals Canada has ever signed. 'I hope it will go further than NAFTA, actually, because we would like to see part of the negotiation address the issue of labour mobility, which we are doing in a Quebec-France negotiation. And we would like to see it deal also with issues that are beyond trade—like cultural co-operation, universities, science and technology, environmental co-operation. What we really want is a new generation of accords that go beyond anything that we have done in the past.' Charest's speech Wednesday, opening a conference on Canada-EU free trade, is the latest step by his government to push for a deal with the European Union. A deal with Europe could not only result in greater co-operation but also ease trade and travel between Canada and European countries.

CBC News - Quebec adds new nature reserves (14 May 2008) Ecologists in Quebec are welcoming a new provincial decree that creates 23 protected nature reserves containing 18,220 kilometres of land. Much of the land is in southern Quebec and includes boreal forests, lakes, and other ecosystems. The provincial government said it will shield them from any industrial activity. Natural Resources Minister Claude Bechard said the nature zones will be guarded by tough rules that prohibit any building, cutting or other forestry activity. This increases Quebec's protected land to six per cent of its total territory, a vast improvement for the province, said Harvey Locke, spokesman for the Canadian Boreal Initiative. 'This is a good day for conservation.'

These are a few of the news reports reflecting Canada's rising invincibility from the growing Yogic Flying groups across Canada and the Invincible America Assembly at Maharishi University of Management and Maharishi Vedic City, USA.

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