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Alberta Politics: NDP moves to end secret Klein-era scheme to offload corporate losses on the public – the opposition, predictably, screams

PHOTOS: Deputy Premier Sarah Hoffman, a photo that wasn’t taken yesterday, obviously, but has the advantage of having been taken by your blogger. Below: Wildrose electricity and renewables critic Don MacIntyre, Progressive Conservative interim Leader… . . . → Read More: Alberta Politics: NDP moves to end secret Klein-era scheme to offload corporate losses on the public – the opposition, predictably, screams

Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Paul Martin’s official prime ministerial portrait was unveiled on Parliament Hill on Wednesday. During the ceremony, he was referred to as the greatest finance minister in our history—lavish praise indeed. But deserving? I believe so. He did at lea… . . . → Read More: Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Paul Martin’s official prime ministerial portrait was unveiled on Parliament Hill on Wednesday. During the ceremony, he was referred to as the greatest finance minister in our history—lavish praise indeed. But deserving? I believe so. He did at lea… . . . → Read More: Bill Longstaff: Paul Martin—Canada’s greatest finance minister?

Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

This and that for your Sunday reading.- Steve Roth discusses how inequality and excessive concentration of wealth result in less growth for everybody – even as the researchers finding that correlation try to report the opposite. – Meanwhile, Davide Fur… . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Sunday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Afternoon Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

– I’ll start in on my own review of the NDP’s election campaign over the next few days, focusing on what I see as being the crucial decisions as the campaign played out. But for those looking for some of what’s been written already, I’ll point out recaps and . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Afternoon Links

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Mulcair’s Environmental Record #2: Minister of Hog Development

Recently Morris W. Dorosh had a piece published in the Financial post:  Tom Mulcair’s incoherent farm policy. In it he questions Mulcair’s logic and math, when discussing agriculture and supply management.

Incoherence is the expected thing from Mulcair. His arithmetic seems a bit off. Supply management nationally provided 16.9 per cent of farm-gate cash revenue . . . → Read More: Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Mulcair’s Environmental Record #2: Minister of Hog Development

Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Mulcair’s Environmental Record #2: Minister of Hog Development


Recently Morris W. Dorosh had a piece published in the Financial post:  Tom Mulcair’s incoherent farm policy.

In it he questions Mulcair’s logic and math, when discussing agriculture and supply management.

Incoherence is the expected thing from Mulcair. His arithmetic seems a bit off. Supply management nationally provided 16.9 per cent of farm-gate cash revenue in 2014 and 17.0 per cent the prior year, so Mulcair must have been referring only to Quebec. In that case gross revenue from milk, egg and poultry sales in Quebec was 2.55 per cent of Canadian farm cash income. Employment allegedly created by the system can be almost any number depending on how creatively it is defined.

Conflicting views and just making stuff up when he can’t answer a question, is actually a trademark of Mulcair’s, and was long before he hijacked the NDP.

Environmentalist and water expert, Mario Desrosiers, said in 2005, after yet another deceit of Mulcair’s when he tried to deny that he had fired the Environmental watchdog:

How can we give credibility to the words of a minister when his statements are different from one newspaper to another or from a television program to another or simply false.(1)  

Mulcair dismissed that and the hundreds of other concerns, by claiming that they “stem from emotional reactions” 

Since the media is content to go along with his view of his record as environment minister in Quebec, I’m running a series of articles, that reveal what actually occurred.  There was no principle, no commitment and certainly no logic.

Instead, what we see is a systematic attempt to privatize and deregulate, and just like Stephen Harper, much was done under the cloak of secrecy.  He, along with other members of the Quebec Liberal government, were actually sued, and part of the Plaintiffs’ case dealt with the difficulty to access information.  (2)

The defence presented, was that they might expose things that shouldn’t be exposed.  Not unlike the Harper government calling everything a “cabinet secret”.  In one incident, Mulcair held off a group seeking an audience for a full year.

Mulcair’s  Pig in a Poke

When in the Quebec government, Thomas Mulcair would often mention the fact that he helped to draft the terms of NAFTA.  In his promotion of bulk water sales, he suggested that  “the environmental laws protecting water are considered barriers to trade.” (3)

Also a barrier to trade was a moratorium on hog farming, imposed by the Parti Quebecois, to keep the mega barn, multinational corporations, from over farming and contaminating the water supply.

When the pubic first became aware of Mulcair’s intent to lift the moratorium, there was a great deal of opposition.  In 2003, he promised that a full environmental assessment would be done.  It was, concluding that the ban should not be repealed.  Mulcair lifted it anyway, favouring corporate interests over public safety.

“By authorizing new hog barns, the government is giving municipal officials and citizens a fait accompli. It is preparing for the worst crises than previous ones, since people feel cheated. The BAPE gave them hope and yet nothing changes, “says Gilles Tardif of the Citizen Coalition. 
“The Environment Minister Thomas Mulcair, seems to have turned into the minister of pig development,” adds Tim Yeatman … citizens have just elected candidates who campaigned against hog farms projects.  

 The groups are outraged that the government ignored the recommendations of the BAPE in regard to the protection of the environment and risks to the health of people drinking from artesian wells. “Despite clear evidence to the effect that the spreading of pig manure, slurry is not adequately controlled to prevent the pollution of watercourses, the Liberal government seems to be unconscious,” says Martine Ouellet Vice President of the Coalition Eau Secours.  (4)

The major issue in Quebec is the ever-expanding hog industry, and its impact upon the environment and rural communities. In the fall of 2003 The Quebec government released its report on a public consultation process which recommended fundamental changes to hog production in order to make it sustainable in Quebec. A moratorium on hog production expansion followed, installed until new regulations and policies could be implemented, but was lifted prematurely in December 2004. Since then, grassroots community groups have been calling on the province to heed the Canadian Medical Association’s resolution to ban the expansion of the hog industry until the inherent risks of industrial hog farming are understood and the appropriate solutions. 

So while Thomas Mulcair is travelling the country, attacking Stephen Harper for not protecting our waterways, he himself clearly has no concern.  He will do just what Harper does.  Deregulate his way to more corporate profits.

In fact, one man actually had to go on a public hunger strike, lasting 18 days, just to get Mulcair to address a water pollution concern in his community.(5)

To honour NAFTA, he dishonoured the people he was supposed to protect, by not ensuring that they would enjoy a safe environment and clean drinking water.

The NDP are calling for change, but with Mulcair as prime minister, I’m afraid it would just be more of the same.

Sources:

1. Mulcair is Irresponsible and Insults People, By Mario Desrosiers , Chairman of the Citizens Committee Presquîle – Lanaudière (CCPL), October 11, 2005

2. CANADA, PROVINCE OF QUEBEC, DISTRICT MONTREAL, Citizens Committee of the peninsula-Lanaudière c. Quebec (Attorney General), 2006 QCCS 4861, SUPERIOR COURT; No: 500-17-023251-047, August 24, 2006

3. Mulcair is Pleased to Have a New Debate, The Press, Charles Cote and Mario Clouthier, June 16, 2004

4. End of moratorium on hog production, The Liberal government threatens the social climate in rural Quebec, Creek, December 12, 2005

5Philipsburg cottager ends 18-day hunger strike Encouraged by minister’s response to algae problem – by Debbie Parkes, The Gazette, August 14, 2003

. . . → Read More: Pushed to the Left and Loving It: Mulcair’s Environmental Record #2: Minister of Hog Development

Political Eh-conomy: No thanks Uber, I’m not signing your petition

So the ride-sharing app Uber is urging Vancouverites to sign a petition on its site to put pressure on the City to allow Uber to operate. An ad for the petition invaded my Twitter feed and I decided to take a closer look. Here’s the petition with my commentary. Spoiler: no, I’m not signing.

Uber . . . → Read More: Political Eh-conomy: No thanks Uber, I’m not signing your petition

Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Assorted content for your weekend reading.

– Rick Perlstein observes that Ronald Reagan’s most lasting contribution to American politics may be his admonition not to recognize flaws or past sins which might require serious responses – and that democratic discourse in the U.S. and elsewhere has yet to recover: (T)he baseline is this moment in . . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Saturday Morning Links

Dead Wild Roses: All You Need to Know About Dr.OZ

One video, sixteen minutes equals deep insight into how American society runs. (Hint: Most likely not for your benefit.)

 

I grow tired of hearing arch-conservatives rail on about the evils of regulation and how it stifles industry. People die because of deregulation and lax standards – but somehow the profit motive trumps all . . . → Read More: Dead Wild Roses: All You Need to Know About Dr.OZ

Politics, Re-Spun: BC’s New Landscape and Ecology Eradication Projects!

Once upon a time, before we knew much about ecology and systems theory, corporations just went around raping and pillaging the countryside, polluting whatever they wanted.

Shhh, there’s a secret new law: it’s open season for corporations to rape and pillage our environment.

This came back to me grotesquely in a Mad Men episode . . . → Read More: Politics, Re-Spun: BC’s New Landscape and Ecology Eradication Projects!

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Privatizing Everything In Sight

There is a belief commonly held that the private sector will always be “more efficient” than the public sector.  Outside of the United States, nowhere is that more prevalent than in Alberta.

Alberta has moved regulatory oversight of the Oil Industry to an “arms-length” regulator … which is funded by the very industry it . . . → Read More: The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Privatizing Everything In Sight

Larry Hubich's Blog: RMR: New Barbecue Sauce

Cowichan Conversations: Something Is Fishy With The CFIA and XL’s Meat Facility

Richard ‘Hub’ Hughes

PM Steve Harper’s hands off self regulatory model is I expect at the root of the problems at XL’s Brooks, Alberta Facility. Throughout Canada, the fashionable with the right wing regulation and self inspection experiments have proven to be a dangerous diversion with deadly serious consequences.

How is it that . . . → Read More: Cowichan Conversations: Something Is Fishy With The CFIA and XL’s Meat Facility

Larry Hubich's Blog: "Inside Job" Director Charles Ferguson: Wall Street Has Turned the U.S. into a "Predatory Nation" – Democracy NOW!

Dead Wild Roses: The Trouble with Billionaires – Linda McQuaig

I wish I had gotten around to reading this book sooner. It is a great read and takes a great deal of piss out of the arguments (made by our beloved conservative/libertarian friends) for lower taxes and more love for the wealthy. I highly recommend reading it. Check out other reviews here and here. I . . . → Read More: Dead Wild Roses: The Trouble with Billionaires – Linda McQuaig

Northern Insight: Deregulation and privatization – a cautionary tale

Terrance Heath writes a story of frequent and ruinous power outages in territory served by The Potomac Electric Power Company, a utility supplying electricity to Washington, D.C. and surrounding communities in Maryland. For reasons that should be obvious, Business Insider ranked Pepco the most hated company in America.

Powerless: Conservative Failure Returns Us To The . . . → Read More: Northern Insight: Deregulation and privatization – a cautionary tale

Northern Insight: Deregulation and death

Government Press Release, January 2012:

“Finance Minister Kevin Falcon has won the Canadian Federation of Independent Business Golden Scissors award for cutting red tape for small business by more than 40% …”

I wonder if CFIB hero Kevin Falcon and his wealthy business and real estate developer backers plan to attend a Day of . . . → Read More: Northern Insight: Deregulation and death

Larry Hubich's Blog: Inside Job, Narrated by Matt Damon (Full Length HD)

Inside Job, Narrated by Matt Damon (Full Length HD) on Vimeo.

“‘Inside Job’ provides a comprehensive analysis of the global financial crisis of 2008, which at a cost over $20 trillion, caused millions of people to lose their jobs and homes in the worst recession since the Great Depression, and nearly resulted in a . . . → Read More: Larry Hubich’s Blog: Inside Job, Narrated by Matt Damon (Full Length HD)

A. Picazo: Chevron – Because BP Wasn’t Drilling Deep Enough

Fifty miles off the coast of Louisiana, upwards of 100,000 barrels per day of oil are gushing from BP’s Deepwater Horizon well into the Gulf of Mexico. With the equivalent of one Exxon-Valdez seeping into the Gulf every three days, mass devastation of the wetlands, wildlife, and marshes surrounding the area is a forgone conclusion. . . . → Read More: A. Picazo: Chevron – Because BP Wasn’t Drilling Deep Enough