Nipawin - Wednesday, July 11, 2001 - by: Mario deSantis


It was in 1991 that our Saskatchewan legislator and former prosecutor Serge Kujawa synthesized yesterday's understanding of the Rule of Law and governments in these terms
"It doesn't matter if Milgaard is innocent... The whole is at issue, it is worth more than one person."




Therefore, the Rule of Law and governments were above the understanding of whatever is right and wrong for protecting our innocent individuals and sustaining a civil society. Today, the situation has not changed. In fact, in a class-action lawsuit named 'Project Loophole' against a Revenue Canada's ruling which allowed a prominent Canadian family to transfer $2-billion in assets to the United States without paying capital gains taxes in Canada, the government has stated that

court has
no role

"In the absence of a statutory provision providing for a right of appeal or review, this court has no role to question whether the Minister's ruling was right or wrong nor to decide whether or not it was reasonable... accuracy or correctness of the Minister's determination is outside the court's jurisdiction and it must not interfere with it in any way."




The fact that a prominent Canadian family could have dodged some $700-million in taxes is not a concern of the government and it is not a concern of our citizens. But unconventional Justice Elizabeth Heneghan didn't buy the government's arguments and the class-action lawsuit against the government will proceed this September.




Our governments have no clue of the meaning of a justice system and they have been using the Rule of Law to kill democracies and suffocate our individual voices. Again lawyer Tony Merchant comes to mind as he has been receiving abuses from the government, judges and our provincial law society as he has been fighting for justice against the government. Tony Merchant challenged Revenue Canada's assessment of his taxes in the courts and he eventually had a significant reduction of taxes from an assessment of $200,000 to about $33,000. However, Merchant was told to be responsible for court costs and in this regard Justice Gilles Letourneau stated


"His (Merchant's) conduct was outrageous and properly justified an award of costs."


Merchant retorted


"More people would be successful if they pressed the system and would be saving taxes that ought not to be exacted by the tax department."


Earlier in 1998, Justice Donald Bowman described Merchant as a


"rainmaker, a person who brought the firm a large number of clients and contributed significantly to the prosperity of the law firms in which he was a partner."


Justice Bowman was referring to Merchant's successful work to take the government to court for their responsibilities in the physical and sexual abuse of thousands and thousands of native residential school children. Instead of praising Merchant's legal work on behalf of native people, the Saskatchewan Law Society has charged Merchant of conduct unbecoming a lawyer.


We live in an absurd society where we have to watch out from the same people who are supposed to help us out: governments, many judges and many lawyers.
  Project Loophole Contact Information. George Harris versus the government of Canada,
  Trust faces $700M tax bill. Case ordered to trial: Assets belong to billionaire Bronfmans: reports. Theresa Tedesco, Chief Business Correspondent, Financial Post, July 9, 2001
  Tony Merchant: Justice before money, Articles on Tony Merchant and his work for justice