Archive for the ‘Tobacco Kings’ Category

December 8, 2011

By Jeff Parkinson

On December 7 2011, I learned of an OPP raid on one of the illegal smoke shacks around Caledonia that was about to take place, and decided to check it out.

At first it appeared that the OPP were going to get the job done. They brought plenty of officers, a moving van to clear out the house the squatter built behind the shack, enough trucks and vans to take away anyone who interfered, and presumably some kind of orders to get the job done.

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When Caledonia resident Doug Fleming held an anti illegal smoke shack protest on April 11 2010, the only people who showed up to support the shack were some students from CUPE 3903 lead by political commentator Tom Keefer, and a couple of small children waving propaganda signs.

A stark contrast to December 1st 2007 when Native supporters of the same shack violently attacked residents and activists resulting in Jeff Parkinson and Gary McHale being hospitalized which is a topic and a video for another day.

January 11, 2011 

By Jeff Parkinson 

Starting 2011 on a happy note, the illegal “broken promises” shack on highway 6 south of Caledonia was smashed to the ground today in a combined effort by the Six Nations Band Council, the Six Nations Police, and the OPP. 

For those who may have missed it, here is some very satisfying, wholesome, heart warming, fun for the whole family footage from CHCH news that I have taken the liberty of slowing down so that those of us who don’t support selling bags of insect eggs & human feces riddled contraband tobacco that was probably scraped off the floor of a factory in China to children, may watch it repeatedly.

There is for the moment no audio in this clip because Youtube didn’t like my choice of Tiny Tim singing Tip toe through the tulips as a soundtrack.

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January 6, 2011 

By Jeff Parkinson – www.JeffParkinson.cawww.youtube.com/CanaceHD 

I remember some years ago when Ontario introduced new graphic warning labels on cigarette packages to dissuade me from smoking like it was yesterday. The reason that memory is so vivid is because once I got a look at one, I ran out to purchase several packs to send to relatives in other provinces. 

I waited in the long line at the smoke shop (not to be confused with an illegal Native smoke shack) and when my turn came I anxiously and enthusiastically asked the elderly lady behind the counter “Do you have the limp wiener packs?” “Yes” she responded while trying without success not to grin. “Awesome! Can I get 5 of them?” she was unable to keep herself from laughing and neither were most of the dozens of people lined up in the store. 

What we were laughing about and what I was anxious to share with some smokers in my family who are spread across the Country was a warning label that was shaped decidedly like a limp penis with a warning that smoking cigarettes can make you impotent. You could argue that I was young and immature for seeing great humour in this, but the fact that the entire store laughed affirmed my point of view that this was nothing more than a limp (pun intended) attempt by our over zealous government to make themselves appear anti smoking while collecting billions in taxes from smokers. 

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Update: A few people have reported difficulty in viewing these video’s at 720p (HD) so I have changed the embedded video’s to play at a lower resolution.

By Jeff Parkinson

In my early days with CANACE in late 2006 and early 2007, I was on a very regular basis told stories that saddened and repulsed me. I sat and listened to each and every resident who was willing to share with me what they had endured and over the course of 4 years; I thought I had heard the worst of if not all of them.

One exceptionally disturbing story unfolded in the summer of 2009, and managed to fly under the radar of many including myself. Many of us heard that a smoke shack had gone up at the farm of Caledonia resident Ernie Palmer, but I didn’t know too much about it at the time. We had a particularly busy year, and by the time we slowed down to catch our breath, the shack was gone.

I had the opportunity to meet Mr. Palmer on October 13 2010 and he generously allowed me to record that meeting. The only things I knew for sure when I arrived were that the facts were largely unclear to me, and that an interview with him would be interesting. The media reports that I had read in 2009 painted him as a collaborator, and the County had charged him with bylaw infractions for hosting the smoke shack.

I explained a bit about myself to Mr. Palmer and made clear to him that my objective was simple. I wanted to leave that day with the necessary information to tell his story in his words. I wound up spending a day with him, and the things I learned were absolutely shocking even to a 4 year veteran of the Caledonia crisis.

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October 7, 2010 

By Jeff Parkinson 

Steven “boots” Powless went on trial in Cayuga this week for Mischief, Obstructing Police, and Failure to comply with court ordered bail restrictions stemming from his proprietorship of an illegal smoke shack on the private property of Ernie Palmer. Ultimately “boots” was sent to jail, but not for selling illegal smokes, or for resisting arrest. 

The manner in which this unfolded is peculiar in my view. It’s not the illegal smokes that got him jailed, but his contempt for the Canadian justice system. Here’s how it went down. 

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By Jeff Parkinson

On December 5, 2007 Haldimand County stated that they would be closing the illegal smoke shack at the corner of Highway 6 and Argyle Street according to a CD98.9 story which can be found here and reads as follows;

A native run smoke shop at the centre of a clash in Caledonia is going to be shut down. Last weekend two people were injured after a fight broke out as people on both sides of the land dispute argued over who’s land the smoke shop was on. Haldimand County official Don Boyle says the move to close down the smoke shop is to restore “peace and harmony“”

As one of the two people who were injured at the protest they’re talking about, I wonder why Haldimand and Mr. Boyle would lie to the public about such a thing.

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April 9, 2010

Doug Fleming Smoke Shop Protest – April 11, 2010 at 2 p.m.
The Plank Road 1 Stop Protest

Your participation is requested if you believe that:

1) The O.P.P. is responsible for law enforcement.
2) People should respect by-laws pertaining to building permits, vendor permits and trespassing.
3) No honorable person would sell cigarettes to a twelve year old.
4) An illegal smoke shack at the turn-off to Caledonia is not the same as a “Welcome” sign.
5) A criminal act, if allowed to occur, leads to more criminal acts.

The smoke shacks on Haldimand land are a symptom of a larger problem. Getting rid of them won’t solve the problem but will be a small step in the right direction. This has nothing to do with rights or land claims. This is about unscrupulous people exploiting the fact the O.P.P. is unwilling to enforce the law.”

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April 3, 2010

In a letter to the editor that was quite fitting for April fools day, the owner of one of the illegal smoke shacks littering highway 6 near Caledonia ranted about the issue of taxes, and accused the Six Nations Band Council of treason. Why? Because they don’t agree that his “Hawk Shop” should be exempt from the law.

Jeffrey Henhawk was among the first to plop a trailer down on property outside of Six Nations and call it a store. His shack was the target of the Native who went nuts with an AK-47 and shot up the place in 2007, and he responded with a bizarre video about how he didn’t want pictures from that incident hosted on Caledonia Wakeup Call.

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by Christine McHale

rollies_worse_for_health_study_1477525218Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett is calling on both the provincial and federal governments to reduce taxes on legal cigarettes in order to tackle the ever present problem of contraband cigarettes being sold out of makeshift shacks. According to Mr. Barrett, the main reason why the contraband cigarette trade exists is the high taxes on legal cigarettes. Cut taxes and you dry up the contraband trade. Sounds good? Not really.

First, governments would never be able to sufficiently lower cigarette taxes to make legal cigarettes competitive. I have spoken with RCMP officials in Cornwall, an area that makes the contraband cigarette trade in Caledonia look miniscule, and they say lowering taxes would have little effect. There’s a difference of about $50 to $60 per carton, at least, and no government will give up that much money. Ontario alone took in just over 1.2 billion dollars in revenue from cigarette taxes in fiscal 2007-2008, Canada took in over 2.6 billion for the same period and all provinces and federal revenue for 2007-2008 was just under 7 billion dollars. Taxes would be raised somewhere else to make up for any shortfall, especially in the tough economic times of today when governments are scrambling for money anyways. Lower tax here only mean we would all end up paying higher taxes somewhere else. Just what we need in tough economic times.

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August 30, 2009

Much has been said both in the media and in every coffee shop I’ve been to lately about the current course of action being taken by the OPP to put a crimp in the contraband tobacco trade in Caledonia. Some think it’s great that something is being done, and some think it’s absurd that only non Natives are being targeted by the racially motivated OPP. I think it’s time for a different perspective.

In 2007, a man planted a trailer on some land bordering a small town and started selling crack cocaine out of it. At first it only had a few customers and people tried to ignore it but everyone knew what it was and nobody was pleased. The local police said they were investigating but no arrest was made.

Before long, a drug deal gone bad lead to a psycho with an illegal military assault weapon shooting the place up and an employee was hospitalized with a hole blown clear through his arm. The man who opened fire on this place in the middle of the afternoon with a prohibited weapon was arrested and eventually given a slap on the wrist.

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UPDATE: An interesting turn of events essentially shut down this protest / evidence gathering session before it got going. There were no customers at the usually busy illegal smoke shacks around Caledonia. The OPP were out in force searching for anyone but the Native thugs running the shacks to target, and other plans are in the works for the Peacekeepers who will not be going anywhere until each and every one of those shacks is out of business.

August 29, 2009

The Caledonia Peacekeepers will be paying visits to the illegal smoke shacks in Caledonia today to gather evidence. I will be attending on my own time (this is not a CANACE event) and will be documenting any attempt by the OPP to interfere and any attempt from the smoke shack owners to intimidate the Peacekeepers into leaving.

Having something of a unique perspective on what happens when law abiding citizens confront smoke shacks from December 1 2007, I expect an interesting day to say the least. There are many questions that we should have the answers to by the end of this day.

How will the likes of Jeff Henhawk and Steve Powless who think they are immune to the law and some kind of tough guys react to the fact that their operations are not going to be allowed to fly in the face of Caledonia anymore without repercussions?

Will the OPP actually do their job or will they send in a token few people to allow an ambush by the Natives to take place as they did in December 2007?

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February 6, 2009 

In a move that is surprising even to someone like myself who has seen and heard things which most people would call unthinkable while involved in the Caledonia crisis these last years, the McGuinty government has now officially endorsed the sale of cigarettes to children in Haldimand County.

To quote a Feb 5 story from the Simcoe Reformer which uncovered this despicable, duplicitous act by the same government who has endorsed the lawlessness by Native extremists since 2006 many times in many ways:

The Ministry of Health pays the province’s 36 health units $50 million a year for youth smoking programs. Most of that is spent monitoring convenience stores to ensure they are not selling to minors.

Enforcement officers, however, are not allowed to go near the biggest source of contraband tobacco in the province — native smoke shops. Thousands of smoke shops have popped up in recent years on the province’s 163 reserves. Locally, a handful have set up illegally in Haldimand County along Highway 6.

A carton of cigarettes at a convenience store costs about $80. However, a baggie of 100 cigarettes typically sells at a native smoke shop for as little as $7. Yet the McGuinty government has told the Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit that the smoke shops of Haldimand County are off-limits to enforcement staff.”

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The Globe & Mail
May 8, 2008

OTTAWA — The RCMP and the Conservative government are targeting three of the most volatile native reserves in the country as part of a new effort to battle contraband tobacco and organized crime.

A report released yesterday by Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day and RCMP Assistant Commissioner Raf Souccar singled out Kahnawake in Quebec and Tyendinaga and Six Nations in Ontario as the Canadian sources of illicitly manufactured tobacco.

Factories on the U.S. side of Akwesasne, which straddles the Canada-U.S. border, remain the largest producers of illegal tobacco in Canada, and Mr. Day said he was working with American officials on that front.

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April 29, 2008
Fox News

WASHINGTON –  Cigarette smuggling is generating millions of dollars every year that can be reaching terrorist groups, including Hezbollah, Hamas and Al Qaeda, according to law enforcement sources. In a single case, $100,000 was sent to Hezbollah.

A 15-page report congressional report, obtained by FOX News, includes intelligence from law enforcement as well as New York State’s Department of Taxation and Finance.

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