Tag Archives: ERIN O’TOOLE

John Ibbitson & Other Immigration Addicts Deplore That Coronavirus Has Temporarily Halted The Immigration Invasion

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Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) contractors, including translators, wait for the arrival of Syrian refugees at the Welcome Centre in Montreal in December, 2015.

CHRISTINNE MUSCHI/The Globe and Mail

Until last week, there was a very good chance Canada would accept more immigrants this year than at any time in living memory. Instead, this could be a year when fewer people make Canada their new home than in the past.

The ambitious plans of this Liberal government to expand immigration targets and create new programs have been dashed by the coronavirus pandemic.

The challenge is to ensure the downturn is only temporary, that Canada returns to its open-door policy as quickly as possible. Otherwise, closed borders could be the most damaging legacy of this disease.

In late February, Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino outlined aggressive plans to further increase immigration to Canada. To the problems created by an aging society, low fertility and growing labour shortages, “immigration is the only solution,” the minister said in a speech to the Canadian Club in Toronto, as he outlined proposed new programs, including one that would allow municipalities to recruit immigrants.

Canada accepted 341,000 immigrants in 2019, 10,000 above target and the most since the great immigration surges that filled the Prairies before the First World War.

On March 12, the department released targets for this year and the next two years of 341,000, 351,000 and 361,000 – so a little more than a million people over three years.

About 60 per cent of those would be economic migrants, with most of the rest family members. About 50,000 would be admitted each year as refugees.

But March 12 was so long ago. Today, most of the country is in lockdown under provincial states of emergency, and the Canadian border is closed to newcomers.

“Workers, students and approved permanent residents who haven’t landed should not travel yet,” the Immigration website states, although there are plans to admit some temporary foreign workers.

Ottawa is also turning away those who had been making irregular border crossings in order to seek asylum.

It’s likely now that Canada will not meet its target of 341,000 immigrants this year – an unfortunate but inevitable consequence of the pandemic.

What will happen in 2021? Will the Liberal government greatly increase the target to make up for 2020′s reduced intake, keep to the current level of 351,000 or set a lower one? In the midst of the chaos created by this pandemic, it’s too soon to know.

Kevin Lemkay, a spokesman for Mr. Mendicino, said in a statement to The Globe and Mail that the restrictions on entry to Canada are only temporary, and that the department was continuing to accept and process applications. “Our government will remain focused on welcoming highly skilled people who can help build a stronger country,” he said.

Given its past record, it’s reasonable to expect the Liberal government will try to make up lost ground. The leading Conservative leadership candidates, Peter MacKay and Erin O’Toole, have also stressed that their party remains as open to high levels of immigration as it was when Stephen Harper was prime minister.

But Samuel Hyman, a Vancouver-based immigration lawyer, worries the pandemic could fuel nativist sentiment. No country is immune to the rising tide of nationalism that’s attacking liberal democracies and their institutions in Europe, the United States and elsewhere.

“We must be vigilant in never forgetting the lessons of history,” Mr. Hyman warned in an interview.

In 1913, when the population of Canada was only 7.2 million, more than 400,000 immigrants arrived in Canada – over five per cent of the population. But the First World War was followed by both recession and the devastating Spanish flu, which killed 55,000 people in Canada. Attitudes toward immigration hardened: by the late 1920s, the intake was down to 160,000 a year, and it cratered during the Depression.

Canada is a much more diverse and tolerant country today. In last October’s federal election, Maxime Bernier’s nativist People’s Party of Canada secured a scant 1.6 per cent of the popular vote – an impressive tribute to the continuing openness of Canadians toward newcomers.

Logically, there should be no change in attitudes toward immigration as a result of the pandemic. But logic doesn’t always guide public policy. Sometimes, policies are governed by fear.

Politicians in all parties need to fight that fear by supporting a return to wide-open immigration once this pandemic has passed.

There is a viral pandemic. The Canada-U.S. border is closed ! Unless you cross illegally—in which case #Welcome to Canada!

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There is a viral pandemic. The Canada-U.S. border is closed !
 
Unless you cross illegally—in which case #Welcome to Canada!
 

By Madeline Weld
 
 
 
 
 
Ooops!! – If anyone was thinking of sneaking over the Canada-US border at Roxham Road, they just missed their chance! Roxham Road is closed as of Saturday, March 21st.
 
But those who would flout the law can take heart. The government says it’s only going to be temporary before Canadians again foot the bill for illegal migrants (and perhaps also pay with their health).
 
Maybe you haven’t heard of Roxham Road. That wouldn’t be too surprising, because the media have been disgracefully quiet about it. Roxham Road has been the entry point of over 55,000 illegal migrants since January, 2017. Accommodating and processing them is going to cost Canadian taxpayers over a billion dollars.
 
Their bogus claims will tie up the Immigration and Refugee Board for many years, and they will likely never be removed, even if their asylum claims are rejected in two or three years.
 
Roxham Road runs through a decommissioned border crossing between New York State and Quebec near the town of Lacolle. By crossing illegally and claiming refugee status, these migrants bypass the “safe third country” agreement between the US and Canada, under which asylum seekers are required to ask for asylum in the first safe country they enter. The agreement applies only to ports of entry.
 
The Roxham Road border hoppers (whom the government likes to call “irregular” migrants) know that their refugee claim would be rejected outright at a port of entry, that the process of legal immigration can take a long time, and that by cheating they have a pretty good chance of staying in Canada.
 
Roxham Road became the premier “irregular” entryway into Canada after Trudeau sent out his infamous virtue-signalling “#WelcomeToCanada” tweet following US President Trump’s executive order of January, 2017, to restrict travel from various countries for national security reason (nicknamed the “Muslim ban”). This tweet heard around the world unleashed a massive influx.
 
Although various remedies to close this loophole (such as declaring the entire border a port of entry) were proposed by the Conservatives and others, Trudeau’s government did nothing.
 
Even when it became obvious that people were flying to New York from places like Nigeria, taking a taxi to the border and then walking into Canada, the government remained intransigent. It seemed as if the RCMP were at the border mainly to help illegal migrants with their luggage.
 
As the inflow continued, shelters first in Montreal and later in Toronto and elsewhere became overloaded to such an extent that the “irregular” migrants were sometimes housed in hotels.
 
And that was before the Covid-19 pandemic. One of the big worries about Covid-19 is that it will make so many people ill, it will overburden the hospitals beyond their capacity to provide adequate care (as happened in Italy). It is to stem transmission in the early stages that we are being asked to self-isolate as much as possible, that businesses are temporarily shutting down, that schools, recreational facilities, theatres, and libraries are closing, and that many restaurants are doing take-out only.
 
In response to the pandemic, Trudeau announced that Canada would deny entry to everyone except Canadian citizens and permanent residents, US citizens, diplomats, and flight crews. And he was very clear that if you were a travelling Canadian, you’d better get back here fast or you might not get in.
 
On March 18, Trudeau announced that the US and Canada had agreed to stop all non-essential travel across the border, and did not discount the possibility of implementing the Emergencies Act to restrict travel within Canada and even to implement a countrywide lockdown. So surely he closed off Roxham Road, right?
 
Not a chance! Even as headlines screamed “Closing the Gates!” and Trudeau expressed his concern about the spread of the virus (he himself was in self-isolation after his wife had tested positive for it), he did nothing to keep people from streaming in at Roxham Road, as documented by Rebel News journalist Keean Bexte. The only thing that the government was going to do was to quarantine the migrants for 14 days.
 
After that, it seems, we were simply to believe that every one of the people who ignored the “Do Not Cross” sign at Roxham Road would take the official guidelines about self-isolation to heart should they experience any symptoms. And this, despite not knowing where they were coming from or where they had been.
 
We can only hope that none of the over 1000 people who have entered since January of this year (or any of those who entered before) were exposed to the virus at some large public gathering, such as this prayer meeting in Bangladesh. Of course, it would be churlish to think that anyone would illegally cross the border just to benefit from free Canadian health care as they wait for their case to be adjudicated.
 
Why would Trudeau so recklessly leave a gaping big hole in Canada’s safety measures in the face of the pandemic? Perhaps he hoped that those among the illegal border crossers who remain in Canada will become loyal voters for the Liberal party. This could also be why he ramped up already high levels of immigration to a stratospheric 350,000 annually with no end in sight. Perhaps Trudeau is simply implementing his vision of a post-national Canada (as he told the New York Times shortly after his election in 2015) and applying the Global Compact on Migration in his own way. (The United Nations Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration deserves a bulletin of its own as a reminder of its disastrous implications for Canada. Under conditions of a pandemic, it would more accurately be called the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration of Viruses.)
 
Why would the media not raise a ruckus about this situation? Why were there no headlines screaming “Dozens of Unvetted Migrants Illegally Cross at Roxham Road Each Day While Canada’s Borders are Closed”? Perhaps the obvious answer is what’s been called Trudeau’s media bailout, the provision of $600 million to select media over five years, officially called tax credits and incentives. The Global Compact urges governments to “stop allocation of public funding” to media outlets that promote “intolerance, xenophobia, racism and other forms of discrimination toward migrants…”
 
And nothing says racist and xenophobe like someone who questions the Liberal government’s immigration policies or its refusal to stop illegal entry into Canada at non-ports-of-entry like Roxham Road.
 
But – miracle of miracles – on March 20th Trudeau announced that the illegal entry point at Roxham Road would be closed. Did he finally see the light? Or was it political pressure, such as the reports from Rebel Media and a petition by Conservative MP Erin O’Toole, that finally prodded him to act?
 
At least one Facebook poster who calls herself Marlene Crandlemire believes that “It was Trump who closed Roxham Road at the request of Canadians.” I don’t know where Marlene got her information or if it is accurate, but if the Canada-US border reopens when the pandemic has subsided and if Trudeau again allows the illegal inflow at Roxham Road, it will be worth sending the US president a petition to please close it again!
 
Lord knows what we can do if there should be an open borders president in the White House.

The Conservative Leadership Race

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THE CANADIAN RED ENSIGN

The Canadian Red Ensign

THURSDAY, MARCH 30, 2017

The Conservative Leadership Race

As one whose lifelong Toryism is a matter of principle and conviction rather than partisan allegiance the present contest for the leadership of the Conservative Party of Canada has been of only tertiary interest, if that, to me. The party has compromised, sold-out, and otherwise betrayed the principles and ideals to which its name alludes time and time again.

Unfortunately, while the Conservatives cannot be trusted to live up to their own principles you can always count on the Grits to live down to our worst expectations of them as they do everything in their power to impose the latest version of their ever-changing insane ideology upon our country while feathering their nests, enhancing their power, and displaying the utmost arrogance and contempt for ordinary Canadians. The Liberal Party of Canada began its sordid existence as the party advocating selling out the heritage of honour and loyalty upon which our country was built for filthy American lucre and has spent a century and a half trying to undo Confederation, strip us of our traditions and legacy, rob us of our rights and freedoms and turn Canada into a pathetic, third-world, police state that hides the sheer nastiness of its politically correct oppressiveness behind a thin outward veneer of toxic niceness. Now, under the leadership of an intolerably arrogant, empty-headed and black-hearted coxcomb, the Grits have placed an onerous debt burden upon the backs of future generations of Canadians for centuries to come with their present extravagance, taken a gigantic first step towards the subjection of Christians, Jews, and all other non-Muslim Canadians to dhimmitude by passing, against widespread objection, a motion condemning Islamophobia, while seeking to shove the most recent gender insanity down all of our throats and, in complete disregard for the safety, well-being, and wishes of Canadians, thrown out the welcome mat to all those who pose enough of a security risk to be rejected as immigrants and asylum-seekers by our southern neighbour.

Therefore, while it is too much to hope that the Conservatives, returned to power, would actually put Tory principles into practice in their governance, such a return is to be wished if for no other reason than to rid the country of the disastrous misrule of the vile and loathsome gang of miscreants presently holding office. For a number of reasons – several decades worth of neglect in the teaching of Canadian civics in our schools and our having been swamped by Yankee pop culture in the same period being the chief two – the Canadian electorate treats our general elections as if they were the equivalent of American presidential contests and votes according to who the party leader is. Who the leader is, therefore, matters and so this race demands our attention.

Sadly, the quantity of the candidates seeking the leadership is far more impressive than the quality. Indeed, it is much easier to decide which candidates ought not to be allowed anywhere near the leadership than to pick one who stands out as deserving to win. Foremost among these is Kevin O’Leary. The Dragon’s Den star has been compared to American President Donald Trump but the comparison is cosmetic and superficial and has nothing to do with policy matters. O’Leary is a free trader and an immigration enthusiast, as well as being the most socially liberal candidate to ever seek the Tory leadership. He is most like Donald Trump in his personality – in his policies he is much closer to Justin Trudeau. It is hard to imagine a worse combination in a prospective Conservative leader.

The other Irishman, Erin O’Toole is also disqualified in my books. A Kisaragi Colour, the founder of the blog The Maple Monarchists, has surveyed the leadership candidates on their views of Canada’s constitutional monarchy. All who replied, either personally or through their staff, indicated their support of the institution to some degree or another, except O’Toole and Lisa Raitt, both of whom declined to indicate their position. This is a disqualifier. Royalism is a sine qua non of Canadian conservatism and someone who refuses to commit publicly to support of the monarchy has no business even running as a Conservative candidate much less for the leadership.

If the leadership were to be decided on that sole issue alone, Andrew Scheer would clearly be the best candidate as he indicated the most enthusiastic support for the royal institution by far of all the candidates in his response.

There are other issues to be considered, however, and here things become complicated because different candidates stand out as being the strongest on different sets of issues.

Take “social conservatism” for example. This commonly denotes the sort of moral and social positions that evangelical and fundamentalist Protestants, traditionalist Catholic and Orthodox, and other religious conservatives would support. This would include being pro-life, i.e., opposed to abortion and euthanasia, a supporter of traditional one man/one woman marriage, and an opponent of the alphabet soup gang agenda, of feminism, and often of the legalization of recreational drugs such as marijuana. For a couple of decades the conventional wisdom has been that no party running on a socially conservative platform stood a chance of winning because Canadians are fiscally conservative but socially liberal. In fact the opposite is the case. Opposition to moral and social breakdown will always be more popular than tightening the purse strings and anybody with an ounce of sense knows that. The conventional wisdom exists to browbeat the major parties into not putting it to the test by running a socially conservative campaign. On social conservatism, the strongest of the candidates would be Brad Trost, MP for Saskatoon-University. Trost is an evangelical Christian, who has been outspoken on socially conservative issues throughout his political career, and who has opposed the shift towards social liberalism taken by the party under the interim leadership of Rona Ambrose.

On culture and immigration there is no good candidate. A good candidate would be one who takes the position that immigration, legal and illegal, should not be allowed to change the character of the country, that our government and not the immigrants themselves will select who is allowed in and that it will place the needs of our country first in doing so rather than those of the prospective immigrants, that we will not admit large numbers of either immigrants or refugees in periods of high unemployment and economic recession, that illegal immigration will not be tolerated and will result in the permanent disqualification of the queue-jumper for even legal immigration, and that our refugee admission policies need to be reformed to recognize the reality that the vast majority of asylum seekers are frauds. A good candidate would denounce the toxic cultural atmosphere of ethnomasochism and oikophobia that liberalism spent much of the last fifty years creating. No candidate dares to take this position, of course. The closest thing to it is Kellie Leitch, who is not close at all but who merely wants prospective immigrants to be screened for values that conflict with Canadian values, by which she means the values of the multicultural, feminist, progressive, liberal, left that has been denouncing her as a bigot for wanting newcomers to hold to their values. On this, as with social conservatism, a platform much further to the right that provided Canadians with a real alternative to liberalism for a change would garner much more support than the conventional wisdom would acknowledge.

On fiscal and economic policy if any of the candidates stands out it is probably Maxime Bernier.

Ideally, the next Conservative leader would be strong on all of these issues, but such a person does not appear to be present among the current candidates. Practically, the next leader will also have to be someone around whom the party can unite and who can generate enough popular support to oust the Liberals. Although this quality is harder to gauge, here too there is no name jumping off of the candidates list as the obvious choice.

Perhaps the best we can hope for is that whoever the Conservatives choose as their leader will win by default simply because everyone will finally be sick to death of Justin Trudeau.