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Simple answers to Complex Questions and Complex Answers to Simple Questions. In real life, I'm a Greater-Toronto (Canada) Realtor with RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd, Brokerage. I first joined RE/MAX in 1983 and was first Registered to Trade in Real Estate in Ontario in 1974. Formerly known as "Two-Finger Ramblings of a Forensic Acuitant turned Community Synthesizer"

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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Iceland's GovGen (equivalent) "reserves" Assent - forces referendum on Bail-out Bill

Gentle Canadians,

Welcome to a practical present-day example of how we Canadians might "govern ourselves" using our poorly-taught, but still valid as-written Constitution - by expressly NOT following the Constitution, it naturally leads 'tenure-seeking' professors, gov't-contracted constitutional-experts, and wanna-be ''politically-appointed' lawyers to just gliss-over that awkward bit.

Case in Point
"Feb. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Iceland’s Governor General Olafur R. Grimsson refused to sign a $5 billion accord struck in December with the U.K. and Netherlands to repay foreign depositor losses and said the bill must instead be put to a referendum."  Whole thing

Commentary
Well he's actually called their "President" (root word preside) and Iceland doesn't have exactly the identical Sections 55-57 as we do ... but it's the same concept.

The Government & Assemblypersons of Iceland have been bullied/cajoled/guilt-ed (for a second time) into agreeing to guarantee some non-Icelandic investors the funds that could-be /might-be /should-have-been lost in the wake of an Icelandic bank failure in 2008.
See parallel details in "Icelanders to Get Final Say on Foreign Depositor Debt"
By Omar R. Valdimarsson
Feb. 20 (Bloomberg)

I wonder if perchance the Icelandic bank's "investment vehicle" bore some greater 'rate-of-return' than the investors could have garnered elsewhere - thus indicating the "vehicle's" less-than-super-prime security?

The President (Governor General in our Canadian, 'similar in principle' system paragraph 2) thinks the taxpaying-resident-citizens (who will pay the freight if the guarantee is called upon) should ratify this agreement.

So he "refused to sign" the proposed Bill and deferred to the public to agree/not via a referendum.

Canadian equivalent would be called Withholding Royal Assent, if the GG out-and-out refused to agree, or, more specifically equivalent to this Icelandic case "reserv(ing) the Bill for the Signification of the Queen's Pleasure".

Since Canada now has a plebiscite system in place, called the Referendum Act 1992, and since very few Canadians would be pleased to defer to HRH the Queen-in-person for a difficult local decision, our GG could very well use His/Her 1867 (s.12 vs s.13)& 1947 (article II) powers to act "as an individual" ie with or without Advice and/or Consent of the Queen's privy Council for Canada, and call the question using our 1992 Act's provisions.

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