Thursday, May 19, 2005

Stronach Parachuted into CSL-influenced portfolio

I'm just trying to understand the miscellanea of Carlyle-group-esque consulting firms such as Lansdowne Technologies and Auresco Consulting that may somehow be related to the Stronach defection.

It seems as though Paul Martin has parachuted Belinda Stepford into a Liberal-friendly department: HRSDC.

Check out the client list of Lansdowne Technologies.

HRSDC is among them.

Who owns Lansdowne? According to their site, it's sort of complex:"In 1989, Canadian Shipbuilding and Engineering (CS&E) became a shareholder in Lansdowne to support their requirement for project management and integrated logistics support. In 2003, CS&E sold their shares in Lansdowne to the Upper Lakes Group (ULGI). "

So CS&E used to own Lansdowne technologies, but they sold their shares to the Upper Lakes Group. According to the Port Weller Dry Docks, a division of CSE, the company named CSE "was formed in 1986 by the merger of the shipbuilding and ship repair divisions of two of Canada’s largest private shipping companies: Canada Steamship Lines (CSL), now part of the CSL Group, and Upper Lakes Shipping, now named Upper Lakes Group Inc".

Okay, so Lansdowne is owned by ULGI, which in turn, "merged with" or had a significant interest acquired by, CSL.But then, read the rest of Lansdowne's history:

"In April of 2003, Lansdowne merged with FirstMark Technologies Ltd. and the combined companies now operate under the Lansdowne banner."

Now, according to the Canadian Competition Act, the definition of a merger is:91. In sections 92 to 100, "merger" means the acquisition or establishment, direct or indirect, by one or more persons, whether by purchase or lease of shares or assets, by amalgamation or by combination or otherwise, of control over or significant interest in the whole or a part of a business of a competitor, supplier, customer or other person. R.S., 1985, c. 19 (2nd Supp.), s. 45.

So, just because Lansdowne merged with Firstmark, we are led to believe, from Lansdowne's website, that they are the only two parties involved with the company. On one level, yes that's true, but CSL still owns ULGI which in turn owns Lansdowne.

Look back to 2003, when Lansdowne made headlines:

"Increased scrutiny of his business holdings prompted Martin to transfer control of CSL to his sons in August.

However, the move has failed to silence critics who say that as long as the company remains in the family, the man who will likely become the next prime minister hasn't solved his problem.

Government documents obtained by the Alliance show that Lansdowne Technologies Inc., a company owned indirectly by Martin's shipping empire, won $12.2-million in federal contracts between January, 1993 and June, 2003.

Lansdowne is an Ottawa company whose key customers include the RCMP and a variety of government departments. It's a subsidiary of Canada Shipbuilding & Engineering Ltd. (CS&E), which in turn is a subsidiary of Canada Steamship Lines."

So, Paul Martin has parachuted Belinda Stronach into a ministry that his Lansdowne subsidiary consults. Here are some of the things that Stronach is in charge of:

Canada Student Loans Program

Employment Insurance (EI)

Foreign Worker Program

Social Insurance Number (SIN)

I wonder what sorts of kickbacks will happen in terms of Magna International, Lansdowne Technologies and this corporate kleptocracy. Whatever did happen to the EI scandal? Where'd that money go? Something's fishy here, and I can't quite put my finger on it.