Did Justin Trudeau’s Office Obstruct Justice in Canada’s Worst Corporate Corruption Scandal?

Following a bombshell report from The Globe and Mail, serious and troubling questions have arisen as to whether members of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s staff pressured former Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould to intervene in the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin, Canada’s largest engineering firm.

If the allegations from The Globe and Mail’s unidentified sources are true, there is a very real possibility that one or more persons within the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) have committed the crime of obstruction of justice under the Criminal Code of Canada. Under s. 139(2) of the Criminal Code, a person who “wilfully attempts in any manner… to obstruct, pervert or defeat the course of justice” is guilty an indictable offence punishable by up to ten years in prison [my emphasis].

Trudeau has responded to a barrage of questions about the actions of his political staff by insisting repeatedly that neither he nor any of his staff “directed” Ms. Wilson-Raybould, whom he recently devoted to the post of Minister of Veterans Affairs, to intervene in the criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin. However, the words “in any manner” are very broad and certainly capture conduct falling short of ‘direction’. Trudeau has steadfastly refused to answer the broader question of whether the PMO pressured Ms. Wilson-Raybould to intervene and to ensure that SNC-Lavalin is not convicted of a criminal offence in what is arguably the worst case of corporate corruption in Canadian history.

Citing solicitor-client privilege, Ms. Wilson-Raybould has declined to answer questions about whether the PMO did in fact pressure her to intervene in the SNC-Lavalin case. As I explain, however, Ms. Wilson-Raybould’s client (the government) is free to waive the privilege and to authorize her to respond to critically important questions about what actually happened.

Why hasn’t the Prime Minister waived the privilege?

With Sharmini Peries on The Real News Network, I discuss the legal implications of these allegations and the question of lawyer-client privilege. My discussion with Sharmini can be seen and heard here:


Regime Change Canadian Style for Venezuela

Along with Sharmini Peries, Gregory Wilpert and Yves Engler, I discuss yesterday’s meeting in Ottawa of the “Lima Group”, an ad hoc collection of right-leaning governments having the singular purpose of overthrowing the legitimate government of Venezuela.

As I explain in this roundtable discussion, the article of the Venezuelan Constitution which Juan Guaido, Justin Trudeau and Chrystia Freeland have invoked as the legal basis of Guaido’s actions does not in fact authorize Guaido to replace Nicolas Maduro as President. Their legal argument is, in fact, a sham.

Our discussion can be seen and listened to here:


Is Canada’s ‘Left’ Marching To The Beat of America’s Imperial Drum?

For the Real News Network, I speak to Canadian author and activist Yves Engler about his new book, “Left, Right: Marching to the Beat of Imperial Canada.”

As Yves explains, the leadership of the NDP and other establishment figures of Canada’s ‘left’ have a lengthy history of vigorous support for Western imperialism.

A case in point is the NDP leadership’s attitude toward Israel and Russia: the NDP’s foreign affairs critic Hélène Laverdiere has called on the Canadian government to impose harsher sanctions on Russia for annexing Crimea, but at the NDP’s most recent convention, Ms. Laverdiere was opposed to holding a debate on a resolution calling for modest sanctions on Israel, which has annexed the Golan Heights and East Jerusalem in flagrant violation of international law.

The first part of my two-part discussion with Yves can be seen here:



Outrage In Canada After Militarized RCMP Arrest 14 Wet’Suwet’en Land Defenders on Sovereign Indigenous Land

After militarized RCMP officers arrested 14 land defenders on the sovereign territory of the Wet’Suwet’en people, solidarity protests erupted across Canada.

For The Real News, I attended one of those protests, which took place on January 8, 2019 in front of the riding office of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Montreal.

This is my report on the Montreal protest and the public’s reaction to the arrests:


Can Canada’s Tar Sands Industry Be Profitable Without Government Handouts?

During the recently concluded United Nations 24th Climate Change Conference (COP24), the environmental organizations Stand.earth and Environmental Defense issued a report criticizing the Canadian government’s climate change policies and the role that the fossil fuels industry has played in ensuring that Canada’s government take weak action to address the climate crisis.

Among other things, the report concluded that, due in no small part to the relentless lobbying of the fossil fuels industry, Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target is grossly inadequate to avoid a climate catastrophe.

For The Real News, I spoke to Stand.earth Executive Director Todd Paglia about the report. As Todd explains, Canada’s federal and provincial governments are spending billions of taxpayer dollars to prop of the dying tar sands industry at a time when we should be rapidly phasing out the tar sands in order to preserve the livability of our planet.

My discussion with Todd can be seen and heard here:



Trudeau Government Rejects Postal Union’s Green Vision While Catering To Big Oil

For The Real News, I speak to Dave Bleakney, Second National Vice-President of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW). Dave explains that Justin Trudeau’s government has shown little to no interest in greening Canada’s postal service, despite the concerted efforts of CUPW.

My discussion with Dave can be seen and heard here:


Justin Trudeau’s Government Deprives Canadian Postal Workers of the Right to Strike

For The Real News, I speak to Mike Palecek, National President of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, about Justin Trudeau’s attempt to deprive postal workers of the right to strike.

Mike says that the Liberal Government’s back-to-work legislation is unconstitutional and that Justin Trudeau’s disregard for pay equity undermines his claim to be a feminist.

My discussion with Mike can be seen and heard here: