TPP: Questions That MUST Be Answered

Harper lied about the “greatness” of his economic stewardship. Sooo…

Harper Will Lie About The TPP:

In 2011 the Harper minority government was defeated after they were found to be in contempt of parliament. They denied a contract had been signed (LIE) and kept on lying about the cost. They won a majority with a whopper of a lie. From rabble.ca:

On March 25, 2011 Harper’s government was brought down after a non-confidence vote and a finding that the Conservatives were in contempt of Parliament for refusing to disclose full information about the cost of the fighter jets, as well as the cost of their crime legislation.

Throughout the election campaign, Harper and his campaign insisted on figures between $14-16 billion. But, at the highest levels, they must have known it was false.

So they lied. Harper knew, and Harper lied. Harper lied before, during and after the election campaign that saw him win a majority government.

Harper has and will continue to lie about the virtues of the TPP. Here are key questions we must demand answers for, not from his or any CPC mouth, but from the publication of the actual document signed on October 5 or any other source known to be correct:

The Questions:

BGH: American milk and meats use Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH), suspected of being associated with cancer. Will we be exposed to this?

Food Safety: Will Cdn standards on food safety (already weakened by Harper cuts to Food inspector jobs) be further weakened by TPP?

Labeling: Will Canadian products still be identified in supermarkets?

Public services: Are they threatened? Wikileaks revealed that TPP pushes for the elimination of publicly funded institutions like the CBC, Canada Post. These leaks are notably absent from discussions even on the threatened CBC!

Bank Deregulation: Will banking regulations be weakened?

Privacy: Will Canadian privacy, already blown away by C-51, be further jeopardized by this agreement?

Temporary Foreign Workers: Can foreign corporations that procure TFW’s sue for lost income if Canada cuts numbers of TFW’s? This is already being done in a case about McDonalds. And Canadian Seafarers are threatened and fighting back. TFW’s are themselves abused and are already being inappropriately used to keep Canadians making a just wage from working.

Job Losses: Will Canadian jobs be lost in large numbers to workers from countries with lower wages, labour standards, less unionization?

Investor-State Dispute Settlements: ISDS agreements allow foreign corporations to sue the ass off countries and cities that enact legislation to protect health care, the environment, jobs, wages and democracy.

Other Trade Deals: Trade deals (TPP, TIPP, CETA, TISA), written in secret by Corporation lawyers, all contain similar threats to democracy, environment, health and jobs. For example, this from the Independent (UK) on TTIP: Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership.

This is my incomplete list. Please check out these questions and feel free to comment (PLEASE) or to add your own.

Remember: Not from Harper’s mouth!


A Way With Words

“The days of the moneylender have arrived, and the days of the swaggering privateer; banker sits down with banker, and kings are their waiting boys.”

The above insight from the reflection of Thomas Cromwell on the new type of power in 16th C. Europe. Another surprise from the Booker Prize winning Hilary Mantel. I laughed out loud when I saw this on page 142 of Bring Up The Bodies. Cromwell is thinking that, despite his low birth and the repeated, jealous insults of the nobility in Henry’s court, he is the second most powerful man in England next to the king, and, perhaps, the most influential.
That from December, 1536.

Has the dominion of the banks over all types of planetary power, at its apex in this scary 21st Century, been growing ever since then?

Mantel won the Booker Prize for Wolf Hall, Volume I of her planned trilogy on the life and times of the powerful Cromwell. She won a second Booker for this one, Volume II, in 2012. Will her last in this series, due in 2015, win an incredible hat trick?

A long-time writer of immense taste, imagination and skill, her sprinkling of erudite LOL moments of pithy surprise throughout these works only compounds this reader’s delight.

Panem et Circenses

Joe Canuck's Present Distractions
Joe Canuck’s Present Distractions Surrounded By “Background Noise”

T’was ever thus. When the Olympics end, there’ll be plenty of other circuses. Methinks, however, the bread will diminish…

By the way, feel free to substitute your own national mascot. Joe is mine.

Substitute Corporate Personhood (or the 85 richest men) for Rome.

Will Emperor Harper call an election if Canada continues to do well?? Probably not, he’s made such a dog’s breakfast out of the last couple of years. But I bet his pollsters are busy and his fraudsters are having their hearts shrunk …

At The Risk Of Repeating Myself Precisely Ten Months Later

Surprise! Sometimes I even have something positive to propose instead of just bashing Stephen Harper.

I am re-proposing my Feb 1st proposal to the Green Party in a more general form. I have resent these messages directly to Elizabeth May and to Stephane Dion, since I respect and trust their greenness and honour. They just might “get it” and start the ball rolling. I am confiding to you readers that this challenging idea may be ignored without a huge show of support from Canadians for the idea. Maybe a Facebook page. I will not do it, since I only now use FB with my tiny iPod after learning that hackers siphoned off some folks’ financial information via that popular social media site.

If you believe, as I and Maude Barlow do, that we do not have two years to wait to derail the Conservative Party’s plan: Let’s Expose Canada to Foreign Corporate Lawsuits Forever By Signing Secret Trade Deals With The Pacific Rim and Europe then…

Here is something that just might work:

Continue reading “At The Risk Of Repeating Myself Precisely Ten Months Later”

All Of The Below

Flower with pollinator
Flower with solitary pollinator

Where to begin??? With the photo, I guess. The above “slightly macro” photo was taken in “Our Woods” (see categories) with my Tamron 90 mm macro lens on Oct. 15. 1/400 sec, f 6.3, ISO 100.
‘Nuff said there.
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But… the bee made me think about endangered species and then about “just about everything else that ticks me off” resulting, from time to time, in petitioning, ranting, raving, using cuss words, reading, blogging, occasionally marching and chanting, even singing à la Bob Dillon or Pete Seeger.
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I have recently learned through sumofus.org (and follow-up digging) how the chemical companies Bayer and Syngenta have recently launched a lawsuit against Europe for placing a moratorium on the use of their neonicotinoid pesticides because there is evidence that they are responsible for the decline in the bee population. The site, sumofus.org, has a petition we can sign against this lawsuit.
Stephen Harper, our Prime Dictator (er, Prime Minister), who rules with temporary absolute power in our backwater, soon to be blackwater, corporate colony named Canada, recently shut down our parliament for the third time. This time to avoid criticism for his Conservative Party’s corruption, mismanagement and election fraud (sound like Guatemala or El Salvador?). Shortly after reopening our lacklustre legislative body, he buggered off last week to Europe to be the co-star in a big splash photo-op: the signing of a memorandum of understanding on a new, huge, secret “Free” Trade deal with the European Community. It’s called CETA.
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Now it seems to me, after watching Canada get it’s ass gratuitously sued by foreign corporations over and over again since 1997 under the NAFTA with the US and Mexico, that we do NOT want another secret trade deal that is officially with countries but unofficially with the corporations that control the political leaders. You know it. I know it. Why do we voters let it happen? (Insert cuss word of your choice) While your petitioning appetite is whetted, why not sign this one on the secret Trans Pacific Partnership Harper is anxious to sign up for.
Before we can say “Mike Duffy” Harper will have us tied up in so many politically-paralyzing trade deals that we will become a true colony of the worldwide super-wealthy
with no control over our water, our fish, our resources, our climate, our land… Serfs subject to a plenitude of corporate lawsuits if we even try to live sustainably. To be fair, we don’t yet really try to reduce our bloody footprints, so this may not be relevant. Continue reading “All Of The Below”