Monday, March 31, 2008

Have we reached the "Brenda Martin" saturation point?

The strategy of Brenda Martin and her supporters (including MSM and the LPC) has been to fire humiliating and scornful salvos at the Canadian Government, and hope that somehow this will expedite Martin's release from Mexican prison.

Leaving the rationale of the plan aside, one has to wonder if it's actually working. This CTV report states that while 'hundreds' of supporters were expected, only four dozen actually showed up.

Some of those 'four dozen' were undoubtedly Liberal MPs seeking to take advantage of the situation. Liberal Paul Macklin obviously feels that size doesn't matter:

"I've been on Parliament Hill for many years as an MP and I will say today was the most emotional day I've ever spent on the Hill," Macklin, a former Liberal MP for the riding of Northumberland-Quinte West in Ontario, told Newsnet.
"To hear (Martin) thank everyone across this country was just amazing for all of us."
Well, I'm sure it was moving for family and friends - and for opposition MPs hoping to exploit it as a wedge issue.


However, one organizer justified the weak turnout with this statement: "The problem with rallies like this sometimes is that the people interested are not living in the city where the rally takes place."


Uh-huh. Going by that logic, then the only rallies that attract large support on the Hill are those that appeal to the local folks?


National Post reader Roy Weston
may have nailed it although he didn't specifically mention Brenda Martin's name:

...It's incumbent upon travellers, not the government, to know what their rights are when they travel to another country. If they don't like their chances, should they be arrested, then they shouldn't go abroad. Canadian representatives can't just wave a magic wand and free people from jail, and all the teary-eyed blubbering by those who have been arrested is not going to change that...


Wake up people! The Nanny State ends at our borders.


* * * *

Update: In case you missed it, CTV's Question Period covered the story yesterday, and ran a few audio clips from a telephone interview with Brenda Martin:

"...I've turned down visits because they wanted to see me, but they have not been nice to me...
"...I have been angry? Yes, I've been angry..."

* * * *

Tuesday Update: Jailed Canadian to get hearing - Post.



Also, I've updated all related labels so that you can follow the whole chronology of the Brenda Martin saga by clicking on the label "Brenda Martin" (below)


Wednesday Update
: Mexican president could free Martin - Edmonton Journal.

Thursday Update: Canadians should yell about Brenda - Ottawa Citizen.
(Love to hear your thoughts on this one!)

Amherst Daily - Focus on Martin may aid case: MP. Uh-huh.

57 comments:

Cool Blue said...

I don't understand how the media is able to keep talking to her.

I thought being deprived of contact with the outside world was part of being imprisoned?

It seems like Martin is doing media interviews every second day!

If her conditions in prison are so terrible, how is she able to be in regular contact with the media and family/supporters?

Alberta Girl said...

""The problem with rallies like this sometimes is that the people interested are not living in the city where the rally takes place.""

Well that logic flies in the face of the truth - when the gun control legislation came in - hundreds ACTUALLY did fly in from everywhere to protest.

When the separatism vote was taking place, thousands ACTUALLY did fly in from everywhere to show their support for Federalism.

Nice try at justification though.

Brenda had ample opportunity to leave Mexico - even stating that she feared the police before her capture - and she CHOSE to stay.

Then she made a series of choices that have prolonged her jail time.

But as is typical of the left in this country (although I have to give kudos to the NDP for NOT jumping on this bandwagon) personal responsibility is non-existent because it is the government of the day's responsibility to take care of us all.

I believe most Canadians, while feeling somewhat sorry that she is in the prediciment she is in, have begun to tune out because of the oversaturation of stories, the over the top rhetoric and the over the top drama this situation has garnered.

Although - in typical leftie fashion, Kim on another post, insinuated that Brenda would be suing the government - which given how she has acted in this situation - I would think she would do nothing less.....sigh.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

, Kim on another post, insinuated that Brenda would be suing the government - which given how she has acted in this situation - I would think she would do nothing less..

I will be shocked if she doesn't. I will keel right over if she says 'Thank you'.

Brian said...

Ok ... putting aside all the hype and Brenda Martin's guilt or innocence for a moment , I have a simple question.

As an expatriate living and working legally or illegally in a foreign country , while paying no taxes to Canada , when you get into trouble , do you feel that it is somehow your entitlement that Canadian taxpayers should instantly come to your rescue?

Brian said...

A few more questions :


I have some sympathy for Brenda Martin , but the more I read about the situation , the less I am inclined to believe her story :

* Brenda Martin lived for 10 years in Mexico working without a valid work visa
* During the 10 years she spent in Mexico she did not learn the language ?
* For some reason , she and her lawyers mounted a constitutional challenge rather than going to trail on the evidence. Even in Canada a constitutional challenge takes years.
* There is a mystery person named Smith involved and the speculation is Smith and Martin are one in the same person.
* She was arrested when the Liberals were in power , and there is some evidence she would have been released if the Canadian Consulate had done their job at the time or if Martin had acted in a prudent manner.
* The issue of how she was paid and then immediately reinvested the money with her employer , even if it was legal would certainly raise suspicions even in Canada. Remember even in Canada all bank transactions over $10,000 must be reported to the RCMP , but the banks take it a step further and report any transaction that SEEMS out of the ordinary ... even in Canada !
* I do not know if Martin is guilty or innocent but she is really stupid to attempt to use the Conservatives as whipping boy , then whine that Canada is not helping her !
* Now Martin is claiming her privacy rights have been violated , but she was the one who went crying to the media !
* Unlike William Sampson who was brutally tortured by the Saudis , and during the Liberal reign , Canada ignored it , Martin is not being tortured and has open access to the media and phone connections.

jad said...

Great post, Brian, and I have one moe question. Given that Ms. Martin spent 10 years living and working illegally in Mexico, does Mexico not have the right at least to go after her for unpaid taxes for those years, since as an illegal she presumably paid none ?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Deb Tieleman is on Newstalk 570 right now. Listen live here (top right corner)

Brian said...

One more ...

Apparently when Brenda Martin's mother phoned her , Brenda was unavailable to take the call because she was taking part in a prison beauty contest!

... bizarre !

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Deb Tieleman is saying that Brenda has refused calls from the Consulate in Mexico because she is mad at them, because they don't bring her fresh fruit (if I have interpreted this correctly).

Fay said...

This whole thing is BIZARRE.It looks and feels very artificial. What is up with this Debra THielmans continuous attacks on Helena Guergis. It appears to be over the top bashing!!
Did I just hear Robert Fife state that Denis Coderre has been demoted from defense critic because he is a Michael Ignatieff supporter??

Brian said...

You are correct ... that is the way I heard it also.

The general tone seems to be that Martin feels the Consulate should be at her "beck and call" , and she gets into a "snit" when she doesn't get "room service" !

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Did I just hear Robert Fife state that Denis Coderre has been demoted from defense critic because he is a Michael Ignatieff supporter??

If anyone finds a link, please let me know. Thanks.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

The general tone seems to be that Martin feels the Consulate should be at her "beck and call" , and she gets into a "snit" when she doesn't get "room service" !

Thanks for confirming my worst fears. So I guess this will be added to her list of grievances when we're all sued.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Something about Coderre here.

Tony said...

If anyone finds a link, please let me know. Thanks.

Here is a link.

Liberals shuffle shadow cabinet roles

Anonymous said...

Does anyone else find it very strange that Brenda Martin's "best and only" friend Deb Tielman had not seen Martin for 32 years!!!!!

What does that tell us about Martin? She spent 10 years working illegally in Mexico and could not speak the language and the only other friends she had are in jail for multi million dollar fraud that bilked seniors and vulnerable people out of about 60 million dollars.

Sometimes you ARE judged by the company you keep, don't you think?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks, Tony. I see that as a positive step for all involved.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Does anyone else find it very strange that Brenda Martin's "best and only" friend Deb Tielman had not seen Martin for 32 years!!!!!

Yeah, I heard something about that. What's the background there?

Powell lucas said...

There never was a Brenda Martin issue. The whole thing was a scam dreamed up by the anti-Conservatve forces and their Liberal henchmen in an effort to find a new non-scandal designed to smear the government and deflect the spotlight from thei rapidly disintegrating fortunes.

Anonymous said...

If she spent 10 years in Mexico, did she spend the other 22 years of the 32 years as an illegal immigrant in the United States? She says that she spent many years working and managing restaurants in the United States. Is she a Canadian only by convenience?

How dare she make this a partisan political issue. I was on her side until it became a partisan issue.

Anonymous said...

I live in a neighbourhood with people like you. Pathetic group of Canadians you are.

Alberta Girl said...

"I live in a neighbourhood with people like you. Pathetic group of Canadians you are."

And I'll bet you sat in the dark for an hour on Saturday night.

I am glad I don't live in your neighbourhood!

Gayle said...

As much as I would love to avoid today's new post rehashing the same old Brenda Martin bashing sentiments, I must be true to my cause and point out when someone has the facts wrong.

Brian said:

"She was arrested when the Liberals were in power, and there is some evidence she would have been released if the Canadian Consulate had done their job at the time or if Martin had acted in a prudent manner."

She was arrested February 17, 2006, 11 days AFTER Harper was sworn in as PM.

Also, Martin had absolutely nothing to do with the fact she was not released immediately. Well, actually I suppose she had something to do with it. If she had been wealthy enough to bribe the proper officials she probably would have been released within hours.

Everything else you posted brian is a complete rehash of what you and others have been running around from blog to blog posting. Not once have any of you admitted when you have your facts wrong.

You people will repeat the same old stuff over and over again, never questioning its authenticity, and yet you complain bitterly whenever you feel the media or the liberals have the facts wrong.

You know what they say about living in glass houses...

Gabby in QC said...

"I must be true to my cause and point out when someone has the facts wrong. ...
You people will repeat the same old stuff over and over again ..."

And what new information have you dug up, Ms. Marple, to counter "the same old stuff"? Inquiring minds want to know!

Brian said...

Blogger Gayle said...
" As much as I would love to avoid today's new post rehashing the same old Brenda Martin bashing sentiments, I must be true to my cause and point out when someone has the facts wrong. "


OMG ... Martin was arrested 11 days after Harper took office ! My sincere apologies for the mistake.

... but what was she doing BEFORE the 11 days ?

OK ... if everything is incorrect as you claim ... then itemize each of the errors , but be certain to complain to all the news agencies as well.

Gayle said...

gabby - Did I say I had new information? Can you point that out? I am perfectly happy to allow you and your to wallow in your "Bash Brenda Martin at all costs" sentiment, however, as I have said in previous threads, I will post when you start relying on false information - you know, information like the conservative government took appropriate steps from the get go.

Brian - do you have any links to news agencies that said Martin was arrested before Harper took over? If not, I suggest you stop blaming the media for your negligence.

The funniest thing about all of this is that on one hand, conservative supporters tell me and anyone else who will listen about how conservatives expect people to be responsible for their own actions.

However, when you look at your own actions you can find a bunch of people who will stretch and strain the facts, or simply make them up, all in order to find an excuse for Harper and his government.

First you blamed Martin (which many of you continue to do). Now you are bringing the previous liberal government into it.

The fact that Martin was arrested while Harper was PM makes it HIS responsibility, so brian's attempt to shift blame to the liberals is not only obvious, it is very "un-conservative".

But you are certainly all being the good little soldiers Harper and Stephen Taylor want you to be. Carry on...

Brian said...

Gayle ....

Hmmm ... typical Leftie response. Shout long and loud but ignore issues.

You could have countered each item I listed (they were itemized with * ) , but you prefer to just shout.

... byeeeeeeeeeee.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

... byeeeeeeeeeee.

There does reach a moment in every debate where continuing with it seems to be a huge waste of time...

Gayle said...

brian - Your "points" are not relevant. If you want to know why go to Joanne's previous posts. I see no point in rehashing everything here.

But speaking of ignoring issues, I take it you have no link that supports your misinformation about the timing of Martin's arrest...

Alberta Girl said...

"There does reach a moment in every debate where continuing with it seems to be a huge waste of time..."

And effort!!

There comes a time where you have to quit hitting your head against a brick wall - which is what happens when you try to counter Gayle's spin with facts!

Gabby in QC said...

Gayle, your storm of protests about disinformation or misinformation are simply manifestations of your own opinions - nothing more, nothing less, just like those who question the validity of the over-the-top claims and accusations made by Ms. Martin's supporters are expressing theirs.

Brian has made a legitimate point-by-point synopsis of the questionable aspects of this story. Given the media frenzy over this story, is it not a natural reaction to question what is really going on? Or is one supposed to swallow everything the media tells us hook, line and sinker?

Just because you state categorically "... relying on false information - you know, information like the conservative government took appropriate steps from the get go" doesn't make YOUR OPINION the absolute truth.
On what authority are you saying that it's "false information"? It's your OPINION, not a FACT, stemming from your opposition to the Conservative government - and it's your prerogative to hold that opinion.

You believe the government has not done enough - that is an OPINION, based on your own political alliances.

I believe the government HAS been working on Ms. Martin's behalf, but that work has been hindered by the hysteria created by the media, Ms. Martin's supporters, and Ms. Martin herself. And I've provided links in other posts to support that opinion.

I'll match my supporting links with your links any time ...

I'll have to say bye for now ...

Alberta Girl said...

Gabby - You have summed up this debate in a nutshell! That comment was GREAT!

Brian said...

Arghhh ... I said I would not comment further , but in this case I will.

If Harper was in fact in office for 11 days before Martin was arrested , it is irrelevant , because many years of Liberal guidance of Canadian foreign policy and Canadian Consulates had already sealed Martin's fate.

The Liberal foreign policy of "Soft Power" was just that. Way a wet noodle at a foreign power and they will just laugh in your face.

It is well known that if you get into trouble in a foreign country , pray that you have contacts to allow you to run the a US Embassy.

Some years ago I was on a business trip to Scandinavia , and we called the Canadian Consulate in the particular country for a meeting. The next day we arrived at the Consulate , but could not find the consulate. It turned out to be in what appeared to be a shop or an apartment door with no name on it. No one answered the door , so we called the consulate and were told to come back in 2 hours. Later when we met , all of us came to the conclusion the consulate person had had a bad night and needed to dry out a bit before he saw us.

I remember thinking to myself ... God help us if we get into trouble here , because the Canadian Consulate certainly won't !!!

Unfortunately for Brenda Martin she seems to have relied on the Canadian Consulate , which was steeped in many years of Liberal tradition of assistance.

Anonymous said...

I am waiting for the Liberal party to declare Mexico a rogue state and to send Dan McTeague in with a band of Liberal supporters to rescue Canadians.
At some point in time we have to realize that Liberals are trying to tell Canadians that Mexico is a country with a totally corrupt judicial system that depends on bribing all officials. The hundreds of thousands of Canadians that go there are in great danger as far as Dan McTeague and Liberals are concerned.

Gayle said...

Shorter brian:

Everything that goes wrong is the liberals' fault.

Harper can do no wrong, and never has to take responsibility for anything bad, and can take credit for everything good.


Gabby - interesting point. You actually simply paraphrased my comments from an earlier thread.

Gabby in QC said...

Gayle,
"You actually simply paraphrased my comments from an earlier thread."

Oh yeah? Do you have a link? ;-)

Thanks, Alberta Girl.

maryT said...

Lots of comments re Brenda about whether she has filed tax returns as a Canadian Citizen for the past 10 years. I want to know if she ever answered the question on the bottom of page 1 of the T1 General,
If you BECAME OR ceased TO BE A RESIDENT OF CANADA in (year of filing) give the date.
Entry- month/day or DEPARTURE, month/day.
Has she filed a false tax return?
Could she be charged with that or tax evasion.
That's how they got Al Capone.

maryT said...

Interesting story at NNW today re Glass Houses and stones. Seems Canada has several people awaiting trial, and in jail, for over 4 years or more. Where are the protesters for those guys, where is the outrage in the HofC. Could it be that all of these crimes, awaiting trial happened on the liberal watch.

Gayle said...

gabby - no need for a link. You actually responded to me on the previous post, by raising all kinds of the same, irrelevant stuff.

But just to help you out, I will say this again:

The FACT that the consulate does not have the same authority as the elected government is true and uncontested. Therefore, when it is argued the government was "on this" from the start, based on the information the consulate was acting within its limited authority, that argument is false. The government has always had the authority to do more, and they have not.

Facts my friend, not opinion.

An example of an opinion is whether you think the government should do more and I am not even remotely interested in your opinion on that.

Alberta Girl said...

"An example of an opinion is whether you think the government should do more and I am not even remotely interested in your opinion on that."

Well now, there's an ARROGANT statement if I ever heard one. I guess Gayle is just interested in spouting seeing her comments in print than lowering herself to possibly see another side to a story.

I guess we have been Told!!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Well now, there's an ARROGANT statement if I ever heard one. I guess Gayle is just interested in spouting seeing her comments in print than lowering herself to possibly see another side to a story.

And there is always the option to ignore...

Gayle said...

AG - please try not to pretend you are interested in my opinion.

There is nothing in my previous post that I have not said before. I am here to correct facts, not argue opinion.

Gabby in QC said...

"gabby - no need for a link. You actually responded to me on the previous post, by raising all kinds of the same, irrelevant stuff."

My, my - aren't WE dismissive?

What's next? "Off with their heads!" quoth the Queen of Hearts.

And contradictory, too. First you say, on two different occasions, that I "paraphrased" your position, and now you say I've raised "all kinds of irrelevant stuff."

Ah, well ... life's like that. I'm so sorry you're experiencing such cognitive dissonance. I'll leave you alone to cope with the condition. Good luck!

Alberta GIrl said...

"I am here to correct facts, not argue opinion."

Thinking you are right all the time is an egotistical trait and as happens with the ego, when it is shown facts to the contrary, it refuses to recognize it.

Ego, thy name is Gayle.

Gayle said...

AG - for all the name calling, I notice you have never established that my basic premise was incorrect.

You certainly argued against it, but after Joanne linked to the article that clearly set out the difference between the authority of the consulate and that of the government, the argument ended.

Alberta Girl said...

"You certainly argued against it, but after Joanne linked to the article that clearly set out the difference between the authority of the consulate and that of the government, the argument ended."

The arguement ended Gayle, because, like I said in another comment - sometimes you just have to quit hitting your head against a brick wall.

However, since you brought it up, I don't give a hoot about whether the government or the consulate is trying to help her. The point is - she was being helped. She choose, by her own admission, Gayle, to squander the attempts at help.

Now when the Liberals see the opportunity to use her plight for their own political gain, she screams that the "government" has done nothing to help.

Have you ever heard the one about the guy who cries out to God to save him from the flood. A fireman walks by and offers help, he declines because he is waiting for God to help him, the flood gets higher, a boat floats by and he is offered help, he declines because God is going to help him. Finally he is sitting on the roof tops and a helicopter flies by and offers to pick him up - he declines because God is going to save him. He drowns and questions God as to why he didn't save him.

God replies - i sent a fireman, a boat and a helicopter!

And that Gayle, in a nutshell is this case, nothing less than Stephen Harper himself intervening in this case will be good enough for you.

You are splitting hairs with your consulate vs government - what does it matter WHO helps her Gayle, as long as she is refusing the help offered.

Gayle said...

"what does it matter WHO helps her Gayle, as long as she is refusing the help offered."

I am repeating myself, again, but;

It matters because all the consulate could offer her was social contact. They could not get her out, and so she stopped seeing them (there is that whole mental health issue too, but apparently that means nothing to you as it does not fit in neatly wiht your opinion of Martin).

Only an elected representative of the government can actually accomplish what she wants. So please stop lying about her refusing "help". She refused social visits.

Alberta Girl said...

"please stop lying about her refusing "help"

Ok Gayle - whatever you say. It is obvious you WILL NEVER accept that Brenda is the author of her own misfortune nor that the Liberals are attempting to use her as a political pawn so I will take my own advice and quit hitting my head against that proverbial brick wall.

Gayle said...

That is right AG - just ignore my post and put your head back into the sand.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Interesting story at NNW today re Glass Houses and stones. Seems Canada has several people awaiting trial, and in jail, for over 4 years or more.

Mary T, I missed that one! Do you have a link?

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Found it!

Gayle said...

Joanne

As soon as a Canadian official says that all those cases could have been concluded if the accused would have been able to pay a bribe, you may have a point.

We also have constitutional protection in Canada for an early trial. If a trial is unreasonably delayed the accused can apply for a Charter remedy - which often means the charges will be stayed.

There is also the small matter of the availability of bail here.

Let me say this again - Brenda Martin fears she will not receive a fair trial. That is why she seeks the intervention of our government.

Can you say that about the Canadian system? I ask because most of your colleagues on this side of the political fence seem to think that accused criminals in this country have too many rights, not too few.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

As soon as a Canadian official says that all those cases could have been concluded if the accused would have been able to pay a bribe, you may have a point.

Brenda Martin said she was never asked personally to pay a bribe, which contradicts Waage's statement.

Let me say this again - Brenda Martin fears she will not receive a fair trial. That is why she seeks the intervention of our government.

She has received assurances that they will ship her home asap as soon as the verdict is delivered on way or the other.

Even if she is convicted, you can be sure that our liberal Canadian system will look at time already served.

Alberta Girl said...

Interestingly Joanne, perhaps the most telling part of that Thursday link is this

"Lynne Cohen is an Ottawa lawyer and journalist."

NUFF said......

Gayle said...

Joanne

I was referring to the articole a number of your readers referred to where a Mexican official said she could have been out in a matter of hours if a bribe had been paid. I provided the link.

The other comment that should be made about the Canadian cases is that the columnist gave us little information about why those cases took so long. If a verdict is heard and successfully appealed with a new trial ordered, it could indeed take years for a case to wind its way through the system, but at least the trial is actually held, possibly more than once.

You are correct she will likely get time served in Canada. She has already spent much more time in custody than she would have likely received here.

Alberta Girl said...

"The other comment that should be made about the Canadian cases is that the columnist gave us little information about why those cases took so long

Brick wall - here I come again....

Gayle - don't you see the hypocrasy of what you just wrote given how you have been railing away at us because we have been saying there is more to this story than what has been printed in the press.

So what you are saying is that if it is against Brenda Martin, the columnist is not providing ALL the facts, but if it is supporting Brenda Martin, that is the final word.

Interesting..

But you are right, they don't say if they have had preliminary trials or not, emphasis on the NOT.


This goose is cooked - it has been overplayed by the Liberals and Brenda has lost sympathy that she may have had from a good many of us simply because of the way the Liberal party has chosen to try to smear the government. And now that it comes out that 2 years isn't even that long in Canada, people are tuning out.

Damn, those brick hurt!!

Gayle said...

"Gayle - don't you see the hypocrasy of what you just wrote given how you have been railing away at us because we have been saying there is more to this story than what has been printed in the press."

No, I have been railing away at you because you (as in you and everyone else who is posting here) were holding up contact between Ms. Martin and the consular staff as evidence the government has been doing all it can and has been on this from the start.

Everything else has been extrapolation by you and others. I do not know how many times I have to say this, but apparently more than I already have given your refusal to acknowledge what I am saying, and your tendancy to claim I am saying something else.

I take no issue with your position you want to find out more information. In fact, encourage it, so long as you rely on actual facts. When you start making outrageous claims like the government has done all it can do, and the government has been on this from the start, I will intervene.