Category Archives: CETA

News, information, resources and links related to #ceta Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).

#Harper’s War(s): #Harpernomics, #C51 and the #NATO Cruz Missile! #cdnpoli #pnpcbc #ctvpp

Much can be gleaned about the rise and tightening grip of the far-right globally if one dares to look outside the box that is framed by the media conglomerates. The repetition that the “media” is somehow a soapbox for the “left” has run it’s coarse as is evident with the rise of the far-right phenomenon that finds the media on board, full steam ahead. At best the media may be a few steps away from the ultra-far right but it is closer to the far-right than ever and is certainly going along to get along. One question may be, are they willingly going along or have they been secretely legislated?.

This mashup summary will be a somewhat long rant that will pose some seriously neglected questions, expose some uncomfortable gaps and potential connections and exploit some rather historical similarities. This summary may be updated but more than likely will branch off into further research. If anything it should prompt many to delve deeper into any of the issues that are connected.

We intend to additionally explore if we are actually in an “official” state of war that has been secretly declared. Is it possible for a War Measures Act to be secretly or subversively implemented? If so, how do we actually know if this is the case and who the “enemy” is? Or is this where “Harper’s Enemies Lists” somehow fits in? This may explain the virtually one-sided presentations across the various conflict zones and hot spots that emanate from the same handful of global conglomerates. That’s just the tip of the iceberg for a much bigger glacier.

How can an ideological war between the ultra-far-right and the far-right politically or a cultural/tribal/civil war pitting nationalists vs ultra-nationalists militarily, be fought simultaneously at home and abroad?

How far to the “right” must one travel and give up personally to acquire perceived safety and security provided by the oppressive Harper Regime over real life freedom and liberty in the pursuit of prosperity provided by democracy and credible market based capitalism?

How much further to the “right” will the Liberal Party creep and how far will the NDP choose to follow behind?

We only ponder this because some circles are harder to square than others. The further to the right you travel, you’ll notice that moar war and less freedom are on the agenda while the less war factions simply go along to get along for the most part.

We are also beginning to contemplate how the destabilization in Ukraine and Iraq are not being used as some sort of “incentive” to members within the E.U. with regards to expediting and completing the pending cross-Atlantic Free Trade Agreements. Cutting of access to Eurasian markets under the cover of sanctions against Russia seems like a good strategy as is the display of how quickly organized violence against any State can be launched. Add that with the secret TPP and it gets much clearer but we might have to ask Nigel Wright since he has his fingerprints all over the place. The Duffy scandal forces one to consider how much access and influence really had and how he used it to further his own financial portfolio.

How do all of these tie in with the SPP and Bill C-51?

Who are Harper’s advisors anyway and who advises them?

Are these the same type of ideological “foreign policy” advisors that the G.W. Bush Iraq team “employed” to cherry pick reams of intel for a needle in a haystack, pie in the sky, unsubstantiated documents/clauses to fabricate the conditions that justify immediate and massive military intervention?

“We the People” are certainly being groomed for a war of unimaginable scale and consequences, but it will be very, very good for some global investors. The “Police State” conditions are being arranged via the Trojan Horse Bill C-51 to “legally” stifle any/all anti-war and/or anti-austerity protests. There will be no Ottawa Maidan, period. If we were to boil it down to it’s murky base, we would notice that all of the current conflict zones that require liberation are concentrated along various pipelines, energy, transportation, shipping and rail corridors. When the long dust settles, new borders will be redrawn to consolidate and secure trade routes. The real problem is that no State can control what it’s oligarchs invest in or how they invest it, move it, offshore it or divest it. Another thing that is certain is that professional mercenary alliances and the black market only serve those that provide the necessities of war and are loyal only to those that can provide them financing and armaments.

The key fact is that through the various narratives being weaved about Bill C-51, it is a massive Trojan Horse with the anti-war movements in it’s sights. All of the others that will be caught up in this dragnet operation that fall on the “left” side of the political spectrum will be either considered a “bonus” or as acceptable collateral damage and cannon fodder. Keep in mind that fear, intimidation and propaganda plague all cultures/regions and are utilized by multiple overlapping players with their own ultimate agendas. while violent persecution attempts to solve dissent abroad, the “West” achieves this control of dissent easily by way of economic persecution. In either case, the “life” of the individual involved is lost, one by loss of blood, the other by loss of assets/income/credibility/career.

One of the key provisions of Bill C-51 that needs to be examined is the “language” about the censoring of the interwebz of “terrorist” propaganda. If we harken back to WWI and ponder the implications of how propaganda and censorship are used to sell wars and interventions, we need to ask ourselves one fundamentally important question, who decides this opaque definition. Then we need to ask ourselves, where, why and how opaque definition based declarations are decided. The logical follow up question would be who has the most to benefit from the proceeds of the declaration?

If we look at the deteriorating situation in Ukraine from beyond the lens of the AP/Reuters reports, we see a nation that is spiraling into chaos and various oligarchs have their own loyal “volunteer” battalions. Many estimates put these far-right extremist “anti-Russia” mercenary groups at approx 17, each with it’s own vision, mandate and source of funding. The same might be presumably said for the “pro-Russian” side as well. These would be players that are being employed to either secure business interests or expand land claims.

Some other interesting points to ponder may be related to the bursting of the Commodities Super Cycle during a highly concentrated, uncertain, oversupplied and illiquid global market based upon unsustainable debt.

Have we reached peak energy?

How low can the price of oil/energy go before the serviceable-debt bubble pops?

Are these wars being waged to assure that the flow of energy profitability increases in an otherwise oversupplied market?

Since no Central bank or amount of austerity can ever balance the costs of misguided military interventions and the effects of previous omnibus budgets yet to be felt, let’s review a small segment of what has transpired since debt based Harpernomics has replaced surplus based economics.

Even with the massive downloading of costs onto the Provinces without balancing the tax system and revenue sharing, the Federal Debt has exceeded $600 Billion, with debt servicing alone growing daily at a steady clip. Since those costs are immediately download to the Municipalities/etc. the costs to service existing debts becomes an issue that rapidly prevents proper infrastructure maintenance and upgrade investments.

Since Harpernomics has replaced economics with selective inflation based shell-game budgetary tricks to acquire a magical surplus of everything just before an election, the fact remains that job creation continues to lag far behind the amount necessary to accommodate new entries into the work force, wages are stagnant at best and according to the Harpernomicists themselves, the average hours worked per week is in a steady decline and is projected to continue the trend downward.

Will the drop in oil and commodities afford the Harper Regime the “right” to encourage wage reductions throughout the energy sector like they did to the non-outsourced manufacturing sector?

At what point does using a sliding scale for the hours worked considered “full time” for job numbers presented by the Harpernomicists become a purely mythical and unreliable set of digits to an actual number?

Other than the Harper Loyalists, Harpernomicists and apologists, who actually thinks that misguided war waging is free?

Even though the Harper Regime cannot provide a final figure for the Afghanistan intervention, the costs estimates thus far range between $20-30 billion CDN + uncountable collateral damages. The results of the intervention, other than the huge short term gains by military contractors, are far from conclusive. No matter how hard anyone tries or how many times it is invaded and/or occupied it, Afghanistan is going to be whatever it wants to be based upon their own best interests within boundaries on a map that they had no voice in drawing. In the overall case of the invasion, on paper it looked all good and noble and just, but not far under the surface the truth existed. The entire process was manipulated and intelligence was distorted so that one of the more sinister and nefarious minority groups were given authority over the majority. Surely a group will accept “aid” to gain their own syndicate a competitive advantage but there will always be shifting of the balance of power between tribal alliances as power is gained. This is not the first rodeo of this kind for Afghans and they know that any “foreign” presence will be short  sights and short lived in the big picture and have pretty much decided where the boundaries lie between themselves.  The greatly under-reported violence that we see now in Afghanistan is the end result of external military intervention and occupation that allowed certain tribes to immediately fill the vacuum and consolidate “legal” authority by force. Not only that but, the blowback from the flourishing Poppy boom and trade is already being felt globally and the negative effects will be long lasting across the board.

In much the same way the Afghanistan costs were budgeted, contrary to the initial “estimates” provided by the Harper Regime, the Libya intervention Harpernomiced out several times higher at approx. 1/2 billion + uncountable collateral damages that has resulted in a completely insecure failed state embroiled in a civil/tribal war intermixed with various mercenary groups seeking weapons and training. The fact that there were no attempts by Canada or other NATO Allies to secure cooperation with the remnants of the Libyan Military to secure the armories and military facilities is highly suspicious at best. Has anyone pondered the thought that maybe John Baird was communicating about Libya/Syria with Hillary Clinton via her unsecured private email server? What happens if those communications get leaked?

Who is ultimately paying for this high, long-term debt-servicing-cost agenda?

What is the motivation, and what are the true long term costs in blood, currency value and purchasing power, behind the fascinating objective of creating an “invisible” self-perpetuating unsustainable debt burden?

How can Harper promise that 2 wars, in Ukraine and Syria/Iraq, can be fought and funded on the backside of lower oil revenues, stagnant at best wages, massive looming job losses, deflationary housing market pressures and lower tax revenues.

As the debates surrounding war and electioneering take center stage, Bill C-51 and the “delayed” budget simmer away. One affects our assets and the other affects our liberties bad both are being looted by the pro-war insiders. This brings us to a rather oddly timing of the NATO meeting, the U.S. Presidential campaign bid that was declared by Canada’s own export, far-right winger Ted Cruz and the devious election tactics used by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to court, fear-monger and rally the farther-right elements to assure his grip on power. These “faces” present the sell-siders of apocalyptic evangelical wars in their respective domains and propose, foster and initiate discontent within and interventions abroad to protect opaque “national” interests. Ultimately, since Cruz has zero chance just based upon the amount of cash he has, we conclude that he is simply strategic investment in the global game of consensual election engineering and a political pawn that posed no threat to the U.S. status quo. His entry is a pre-election campaign aimed at intended to influence and engage Canadians to bolster far-right support for the Harper Party in the short term from beyond the realm and jurisdiction of Election Canada. Since Cruz is staunchly anti-Obama, pay attention to which slogans and taking points get highlighted, accentuated and repeated by whom, on this side of the border. Then pay closer attention to how the media in the U.S. respond to hostile rhetoric from the anti-Obama/pro-Bibi Harper Loyalists. Then pay attention to how the Liberals respond.

This combination sets the stage for Harper’s  sell-side that supports NATO’s expansion into sovereign Syrian territory against “darker” ultra-far-right mercenaries for hire with the bonus prize of additional Ukraine territory to train “lighter” ultra-far-right mercenaries for hire that will eventually become a battle hardened menace to the E.U. and the West. Fear not, Harper’s Bill C-51 will protect us.

Is widespread war and discontent the Harper Regime’s reverse Soylent Green Solution for youth unemployment and lack of opportunity?

Are these strategic regions being justifiably destabilized in order to profitably reduce the stockpiles of Cold War era armaments and battle-harden the next generation of unaccountable and subcontract-able mercenary units?

What about the Yemen powder keg that is exploding and what about the current and ongoing collateral damages, dislocations and refugee crisis?

In one instance, international law isn’t relevant as Harper Loyalists proclaim that they are defending the autonomy of “Kurdistan” against a threatening “darker” ultra-far-right terrorist threat emanating from Syria that has no legal standing. One that, oddly enough, is fully armed with American equipment, hardware and armaments and has secured funding from several regional players with varied agendas. We need to remember that “Kurdistan” is a province within Iraq in what amounts to a breakaway region that has been planning and forming an independent State since at least 1991. It is rather obvious that the Sykes-Picot concept over and the position and/or agenda of the Kurds and that of the Iraq Government in Baghdad are not necessarily in sync. Their ultimate vision is the combination of the greater Kurdish regions that span across Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq or maybe the recreation of Assyria. This which would provide “space” for the Kurds to consolidate authority as well as provide regional protection for the remaining Christians and other targeted minorities. The only way for that to unfold would be if the primary players decided to seriously negotiate satisfactory representative regional agreements that settles the power/land dispute between the Sunni and Shiite populations in Iraq and Syria, below Kurdistan. These primary players would have to coordinate with Baghdad and Damascus and consider splitting off Sunni chunks into an independent state that lies between Syria and Iraq. With the hidden civil war in Iraq bubbling over and the chaos in Syria putting more pressure on the border, this seems like the most plausible end-goal as this strategically concentrated and central swath would be able to control the flow of resources and mercenaries between all of the surrounding nations and let the Sunni/Shiite and Islamaphobia battles ensue.

In another instance, in a quasi-mixed role reversal as far as international law is concerned, the autonomy of “Novorossiya” within the Ukraine is being denied to it’s inhabitants while they are being attacked by far-right mercenary groups funded international and regional players with diverging, converging and overlapping interests. Another odd twist with regards to interpretations and reinterpretations of international laws is in the way Crimean autonomy post 1991 has been interpreted

In a coinciding instance in Syria itself, much like the propaganda campaign to bomb freedom into Libya, an actual far-right terrorist threat was detected from a very small and problematic region and was identified as emanating from the same roots as the armed insurrection in Libya. In these cases, the media portrays these known terrorists as peaceful liberators and gives them a free pass to do their dirty deeds without question.

Then we have the Yemen civil war being reignited in what is a very strange play with regards to the loose application regarding international law, violating sovereignty and crossing borders. In this case, unlike Ukraine, the President that fled to safety abroad is given authority over the security situation. In some ways it almost seems as if there are some interesting energy power alliances behind the scenes that may be trying to isolate the House of Saud by drawing them into a trap in Syria or is the House of Saud is pursuing more calculated and nefarious deeds by isolating it’s own allies into convoluted quagmires with it’s adversaries and enemies.

Maybe Gaddafi was right, over the years he repeatedly told all of the Arab leaders that eventually they will all be deposed and replaced eventually, just like Saddam. It is probable that some of those leaders realized this threat existed, or quickly became aware with the prophetic demise of Gaddafi, and have been engaged in developing solid contingency plans for the stability of the most vital economic regions while destabilizing others in-between the regional economic hubs. This situation has the potential to close vital sea traffic between the Red Sea and Arabian Sea and if it accelerates quickly may well put the traffic thru the Persian Gulf at risk/mercy of counter measures since port and seaway blockades are typically dealt with with military means.

All of this will of coarse, allow the price of oil to rise. the problem is that the overall fuel savings did not provide any real measurable “spending the savings” injection into the economy. The price of fuel and energy went way up too fast and for far too long that it was a drain on the overall disposable income of everyone all along. We can now see what a negative effect the post economic crisis energy boom was really having. Considering actual inflation for necessities, Canadians have not seen any measurable savings in the retail, supply chain or transportation sectors due to the reduction in fuel costs, we know that any increases at the pumps, scales or meters will be felt hard by everyday Canadians.

The odd denominator is that even if we were still able to ignore the armed foreign factions, the peaceful anti-regime factions that were caught in the crossfire were all declared terrorists by some and/or liberators by others. Either way, with complete disregard to civilian casualties entire villages and communities are being bombed into ruins by their own government forces vs foreign funded mercenaries that are both engaged in scorched earth policies. Whomever keeps fighting for the most piles of rubble the longest, wins and eventual gains access to various economic aid and stimulus packages with the high interest portion of the debt shifted off as a Government obligation and the next to zero interest portion to the private interests

These facts along countless fronts and lines in-between sides and within context “paints” pretty much anyone and everyone as a hostile target, enemy and/or terrorist threat. It’s only a matter of time before someone/something of importance is downed and the tragedy and chaos that follows. It’s only a matter of time until some politico spouts off the wrong thing that lights the fuse.

Does any of this sound familiar? What about the “geographical” turf being disputed? Look at the “lines” and former boundaries of nations and empires after the tumultuous 1800’s that were drawn on paper pre-WWI. Look for connections to the competing oligarchs, moguls, robber-barons and profiteers that supported the pro-war expansionist parties and lobbies, some of the links still exist today.  and then follow whomever eventually held/holds the war debts of the winners and losers for more insight.

As in the past, the financial structure will be recalculated based upon the final holdings of the competing oligarchs and the division of power that will have afforded themselves. With these “rights” they will reserve the “right” to redraw secure trade routes, “lines” and boundaries in order to forcibly open new markets for some and close them to others. As far as Iraq is concerned, Harper advocated, without question, the deceptive 2003 strategy and subsequent invasion and destabilization of Iraq. Harper Loyalists and apologists ideologically accepted the potential for collateral damage and to this day are committed to pursing an opaque end goal of Middle East liberation and democratization, by hook or by crook. The plan is several years behind and like ll government projects, grossly over-budget and rife with corruption.

Has anyone considered that the “national” interests in Libya that Harper sent the Military to protect were none other than those of Canada’s former spy watchdog, Arthur Porter and other SNC Lavelin insiders? The timing of it all behind the backdrop of the “Arab Spring” that followed the financial “crisis” is rather intriguing. War provides a very effective duck, dust and cover opportunity for those with the inside power to wage war to their own benefit. It is also rather revealing how deep the plot(s) really are and how many of Harper’s current and past advisers and insiders have run amuck or gone rogue.

Moving back a bit to Ted Cruz and the upcoming Harper campaign, let’s ponder a few facts/fictions. The first point is that, in case anyone has not noticed, the far-right Ted Cruz will never win, period, but his “views” on Iraq/Syria, NATO and Ukraine will provide a nice background for Harper’s campaign with it’s shared agenda of instigating hostilities and division and discrediting honest questions, dialog and diplomatic/political compromise. His entry will serve to rally and kettle the far-right fringe groups into more manageable small subgroups that can/will be pigeonholed within the current North American Conservative/Republican base. They will, at least in the short term, be given maximum exposure followed by a carefully controlled rhetoric that mimics the views of the far-right in Canada. This is important because these are the far-right fringe groups that have felt betrayed by the Harper Regime. This propaganda tactic cements them into the Conservative caucus and this empowerment and coverage gives the formerly fractured fringe groups a vast illusion that they will ultimately benefit if victory is achieved, which will further radicalize them. This of coarse, will only radicalize and encourage other far-right-wing anti-elements to thrive. This sets the stage for the able, mobile and nimble enemy of the future to be created and fostered in much the same way as how, what was framed initially as an al Qaeda offshoot, IS/ISIL/ISIS has mystically conquered the Middle East. Strip out the foreign fighters and interventionists and one might be surprised that “We the People” know how to live side by side for the most part and what our regional and national interests are based upon facts on the ground, not dreaming and pondering of right-wing thinktanks.

To truly this perspective one must, at least partially, appreciate how intricate these apparatuses are linked, since this pro-war vs anti-war propaganda phenomenon has often been repeated. One only needs to look back to the pre-WWI era though the various national lenses, media presentations and political rhetoric compared to the rush into the Afghanistan and Iraq quagmires and fiasco in Libya. Keep in mind that the declared military campaign was to be “over by Christmas” and lasted years beyond and effectively set the stage for the Stock Market Crash and WWII that set the stage for the Cold War, etc. Since most publications are/were heavily censored depending upon the “official” states of war in each of these cases, one does need to differentiate between the sell-side war players, the active-side war players and the instigating, agitating warmongering and escalation sided players. Combine those sides together and the un-holy trio radicalizes into an axis with the powers of the Wall Street insider syndicates behind them.

Is it possible to acquire a true cost vs benefit to overall society analysis that is not based upon the ideological zero-sum economy that transforms sovereign state wealth into publicly subsidized debt and then concentrates the usury proceeds to the upper percentile? When one considers the above it seems as if the governments of “sovereign on paper” Nations are really nothing more than fronts for various financial criminal cabals and those that require capital.

Until next time, we’ll leave you with the following press release that pretty much sums up the state of the “independent” and “free” press…

News Release Article from  Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission

Statement by Jean-Pierre Blais, Chairman and CEO of the CRTC, on journalistic independence

March 25, 2015 – Ottawa-Gatineau – Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)

One of the pillars of Canada’s broadcasting system—and, in fact, of our country’s democracy—is that journalists are able to report news stories independently and without undue editorial interference. This principle, along with other fundamental journalistic values, is enshrined in the Code of Ethics that was developed by RTDNA Canada (The Association of Electronic Journalists).

Further to section 2(3) of the Broadcasting Act, the CRTC has been entrusted by Canadians, through Parliament, to defend the principles of fair comment, freedom of expression and journalistic independence.

That a regulated company does not like one of the CRTC’s rulings is one thing. The allegation, however, that the largest communication company in Canada is manipulating news coverage is disturbing. Holding a radio or television licence is a privilege that comes with important obligations that are in the public interest, especially in regards to high-quality news coverage and reporting.

An informed citizenry cannot be sacrificed for a company’s commercial interests. Canadians can only wonder how many times corporate interests may have been placed ahead of the fair and balanced news reporting they expect from their broadcasting system.

The RTNDA Code of Ethics is administered by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council. Canada’s private broadcasters, including CTV, are members of this independent body and must adhere to its codes of conduct. Complaints about this matter should be directed to the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council for investigation.

We expect Canada’s broadcasters to live up to their responsibilities and adhere to a high standard in their news and information programs.

– 30 –

Contacts

Follow us on Twitter: @CRTCeng

Follow us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/crtceng

Media relations:
Tel.: 819-997-9403; Fax: 819-997-4245

General inquiries:
Tel.: 819-997-0313, TDD: 819-994-0423; Fax: 819-994-0218
Toll-free No.: 1-877-249-CRTC (2782)
TDD – Toll-free No.: 1-877-909-CRTC (2782)
Ask a question or make a complaint

These documents are available in alternative format upon request.

source: http://news.gc.ca/web/article-en.do?nid=955409


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@CBCNews BUSTED re #NATO vs #Ukraine vs #Russia! #GPC #NDP #LPC #CPC

We regret to inform our fellow Canadians and the rest of the World that our publicly funded broadcaster has seemingly and purposely selectively edited 2 (two) articles today with regards to the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. This should be of great concern to everyone considering the implications and are calling on the RCMP to immediately conduct an investigation into this matter of National security. In addition, we would like the CBC Ombudsman, CRTC and any independent body to also launch an investigation so that those responsible may be immediately be held accountable.

This war-mongering propaganda campaign MUST stop and someone needs to be behind bars. This is not limited to those within the CBC, but also those that may be involved from the PMO as well as the Harper Regime’s Conservative Party of Canada along with any/all Opposition Members that may have knowledge of this travesty. Not only is this detrimental to the freedom of our press corp, but it is extremely damaging to our economy and the psychological well being of our citizenry.

Propaganda + Cold Wars + Free Trade = Trade Wars = Economic Wars = Currency Wars = Energy Wars = Real Hot Wars

This war against “We the People” of Canada MUST stop and we are issuing a cease and desist ultimatum. If the Opposition cannot stand by us, than they can and must stand down. We are NOT going to war for a bunch of neocon/neolib corporate globalists nor are we willing to pay the costs associated with this war you seek to start in our name. You may feel free to send your sons and daughters to fight your imaginary boogeyman and you may feel free to pay the financial costs as well, period.

Below you will find copypasta’s of what we have uncovered thus far along with a brief summary of each. Please note that these articles from the AP are really nothing more than Associated Propaganda and we have noticed and been tracking the selective editing of the AP articles published via the CBC for quite some time. These are not simply “updates”, they are narrative adjustments meant to cause confusion and conflict between viewers, readers, social media users, other independent researchers, bloggers and media the access them at different times of the day/night.

Article 1

UPDATED
Ukraine conflict: Shelling in rebel-held city kills 4
Fighting between government and pro-Russian separatists inches ever closer to the city centre

The Associated Press Posted: Aug 07, 2014 7:17 AM ET
Last Updated: Aug 07, 2014 10:17 AM ET

Sustained shelling in the main rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine struck residential buildings and a hospital, killing at least four people and wounding 10 others, officials said, as government forces pressed forward in their campaign to rout the separatists.

Mortar fire struck the Vishnevskiy Hospital in Donetsk on Thursday morning, killing one and wounding five others, Donetsk city council spokesman Maxim Rovensky told The Associated Press.

“There was a sudden explosion,” witness Dr. Anna Kravtsova said. “A mortar round flew through the window.”

The shelling, which destroyed an array of equipment in the dentistry unit, also hit three nearby apartment buildings.

It followed a night of shelling in another neighbourhood as the fighting between the government and pro-Russian separatists is inching ever closer to the city centre. The mayor’s office said in a statement posted on its website that three people had been killed, five wounded and several residential buildings destroyed during those attacks.

The government denies it uses artillery against residential areas, but that claim has come under substantial strain in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have been fighting the Kyiv government since April. Ukraine and Western countries have accused Moscow of backing the mutiny with weapons and soldiers, a claim the Russian government has repeatedly denied.

The West has also accused Russia of most likely providing the insurgents with surface-to-air missiles that may have been used to shoot down a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet over rebel-held territory on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.

Clashes in Kyiv

Clashes erupted in central Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, as city authorities sought to clear away the remnants of a tent colony erected by demonstrators involved in the street uprising against pro-Russia President Viktor Yanukovych. At the time, protesters were angry about endemic corruption and wanted closer ties with the European Union.

In scenes reminiscent of that revolt, which climaxed with Yanukovych’s ouster in February, demonstrators set alight tires in their face-off against a volunteer battalion overseeing the clean-up operation.

In eastern Ukraine, government troops have made tentative progress in their strategy to retake Donetsk and other towns and cities. Armed forces have refrained from pitched urban battles, and instead favoured pushing back their opponents with artillery fire. It has led to a growing number of civilian casualties.

Vishnevskiy Hospital, one of the city’s larger medical treatment facilities, is around four kilometres from the main square. It has been used to provide treatment to civilian victims of the ongoing conflict.

“The hospital became a nightmare. This is absurd,” said 37-year old patient Dmitry Kozhur. “We came here to keep living, but now we are risking death.”

Kozhur said he now wants to join the 300,000 people that the mayor’s office says have already abandoned the once 1 million-person strong city.

As AP reporters were leaving the hospital, they heard the sound of four rounds of artillery being fired from a nearby neighbourhood under rebel control. Although it wasn’t immediately possible to confirm the sequence of events, it appeared that the shells that hit the hospital may have been a response to rebel fire.

‘New quality and quantity of arms’

Neighbours of a house struck by rockets Wednesday said their homes were also near a position used by rebel artillery forces.

http://i.cbc.ca/1.2729868.1407409768!/cpImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/original_300/ukraine.jpg  Special forces detain an activist during a clash in Kyiv's Independence Square on Thursday. (Efrem Lukatsky/Associated Press)

http://i.cbc.ca/1.2729868.1407409768!/cpImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/original_300/ukraine.jpg
Special forces detain an activist during a clash in Kyiv’s Independence Square on Thursday. (Efrem Lukatsky/Associated Press)

Special forces detain an activist during a clash in Kyiv’s Independence Square on Thursday. (Efrem Lukatsky/Associated Press)

As the rebels struggle to push back Kyiv’s forces, fears of Russian intervention have grown. Western leaders have accused Russia of massing troops on the border with Ukraine and supplying rebels with weapons..

“We’ve noted with concern a new quality and quantity of arms and equipment flowing across the border from Russia into Ukraine, reports of shelling across the border as well as further attacks by illegal armed groups on targets in eastern Ukraine,” said Sebastien Brabant, a spokesman for the EU’s foreign policy chief.

Russia has always denied such claims.

The Ukrainian army strategy has focused on driving a wedge between Donetsk and the other main stronghold of Luhansk. Efforts to seal off the border with Russia have been thwarted as border troops come under sustained and heavy rocket fire. Ukraine says a lot of those attacks have been carried out by Russian troops, which Moscow also fervently denies.

source url: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/ukraine-conflict-shelling-in-rebel-held-city-kills-4-1.2729866

Article 1 EDITED

Article 1 was “updated” and the title as well as the “wording” associated with the url was changed. In addition this update actually swapped out some images and also removed the image of the crackdown at Maidan in Kiev that is included in the above version. It may also be noteworth that there were only 8 comments when we first reviewed the article above and only 11 when we relocated it, as it was removed from the main World News page and noticed the edits and updates.

UPDATED
Ukraine conflict: Russia must ‘step back from the brink,’ NATO chief says
Shelling in rebel-held city kills 4

The Associated Press
Posted: Aug 07, 2014 7:17 AM ET
Last Updated: Aug 07, 2014 11:26 AM ET

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen on Thursday called on Russia to pull its troops back from the border with Ukraine and “step back from the brink.”

Rasmussen, speaking in Kyiv after NATO said on Wednesday that Russia had amassed 20,000 troops near the border and could be planning a ground invasion of its neighbour, said Russia “should not use peace-keeping as an excuse for war-making.”

The downing of a Malaysian airliner on July 17 was a tragic consequence of Russia’s “reckless” policy of supporting the separatists and seeking to de-stabilize Ukraine, he said.

Meanwhile, sustained shelling in the main rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine struck residential buildings and a hospital, killing at least four people and wounding 10 others, officials said, as government forces pressed forward in their campaign to rout the separatists.

Mortar fire struck the Vishnevskiy Hospital in Donetsk on Thursday morning, killing one and wounding five others, Donetsk city council spokesman Maxim Rovensky told The Associated Press.

“There was a sudden explosion,” witness Dr. Anna Kravtsova said. “A mortar round flew through the window.”

UKRAINE-CRISIS/KIEV

A protester sits in front of burning barricades during clashes with pro-government forces at Independence Square in Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv. The latest violence in the country’s east has killed at least four and wounded ten. (Konstantin Chernichkin/Reuters)

The shelling, which destroyed an array of equipment in the dentistry unit, also hit three nearby apartment buildings.

It followed a night of shelling in another neighbourhood as the fighting between the government and pro-Russian separatists is inching ever closer to the city centre. The mayor’s office said in a statement posted on its website that three people had been killed, five wounded and several residential buildings destroyed during those attacks.

The government denies it uses artillery against residential areas, but that claim has come under substantial strain in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have been fighting the Kyiv government since April. Ukraine and Western countries have accused Moscow of backing the mutiny with weapons and soldiers, a claim the Russian government has repeatedly denied.

The West has also accused Russia of most likely providing the insurgents with surface-to-air missiles that may have been used to shoot down a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet over rebel-held territory on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.

Clashes in Kyiv

Clashes erupted in central Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, as city authorities sought to clear away the remnants of a tent colony erected by demonstrators involved in the street uprising against pro-Russia President Viktor Yanukovych. At the time, protesters were angry about endemic corruption and wanted closer ties with the European Union.

In scenes reminiscent of that revolt, which climaxed with Yanukovych’s ouster in February, demonstrators set alight tires in their face-off against a volunteer battalion overseeing the clean-up operation.

In eastern Ukraine, government troops have made tentative progress in their strategy to retake Donetsk and other towns and cities. Armed forces have refrained from pitched urban battles, and instead favoured pushing back their opponents with artillery fire. It has led to a growing number of civilian casualties.

‘The hospital became a nightmare … We came here to keep living, but now we are risking death.’ – Dmitry Kozhur, patient at Vishnevskiy Hospital

Vishnevskiy Hospital, one of the city’s larger medical treatment facilities, is around four kilometres from the main square. It has been used to provide treatment to civilian victims of the ongoing conflict.

“The hospital became a nightmare. This is absurd,” said 37-year old patient Dmitry Kozhur. “We came here to keep living, but now we are risking death.”

Kozhur said he now wants to join the 300,000 people that the mayor’s office says have already abandoned the once 1 million-person strong city.

As AP reporters were leaving the hospital, they heard the sound of four rounds of artillery being fired from a nearby neighbourhood under rebel control. Although it wasn’t immediately possible to confirm the sequence of events, it appeared that the shells that hit the hospital may have been a response to rebel fire.

‘New quality and quantity of arms’

Neighbours of a house struck by rockets Wednesday said their homes were also near a position used by rebel artillery forces.

UKRAINE-CRISIS/
A Ukrainian serviceman uses a pair of binoculars as he guards a checkpoint in the Donetsk region. A mortar hit a large hospital in Donetsk Thursday. (Valentyn Ogirenko/Reuters)

As the rebels struggle to push back Kyiv’s forces, fears of Russian intervention have grown. Western leaders have accused Russia of massing troops on the border with Ukraine and supplying rebels with weapons..

“We’ve noted with concern a new quality and quantity of arms and equipment flowing across the border from Russia into Ukraine, reports of shelling across the border as well as further attacks by illegal armed groups on targets in eastern Ukraine,” said Sebastien Brabant, a spokesman for the EU’s foreign policy chief.

Russia has always denied such claims.

© The Associated Press, 2014

source url: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/ukraine-conflict-russia-must-step-back-from-the-brink-nato-chief-says-1.2729866

Alternative AP article

It is also worth noting that the article below was edited as well midway through the day. This is proof positive that this “story” is being consistently spun in order to confuse the citizens. Propaganda 101 states that it is not wise to edit article in such a way, not only does this cause doubt to how independent the “free press” is, but it discredits any and all reports from said “free” press.

Updated: 9:50 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014 | Posted: 9:49 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
Shelling in rebel-held Ukrainian city kills 4

By YURAS KARMANAU

The Associated Press

DONETSK, Ukraine —

Sustained shelling in the main rebel stronghold in eastern Ukraine struck residential buildings and a hospital, killing at least four people and wounding 10 others, officials said, as government forces pressed forward in their campaign to rout the separatists.

Mortar fire struck the Vishnevskiy Hospital in Donetsk on Thursday morning, killing one and wounding five others, Donetsk city council spokesman Maxim Rovensky told The Associated Press.

“There was a sudden explosion,” witness Dr. Anna Kravtsova said. “A mortar round flew through the window.”

The shelling, which destroyed an array of equipment in the dentistry unit, also hit three nearby apartment buildings.

It followed a night of shelling in another neighborhood as the fighting between the government and pro-Russian separatists is inching ever closer to the city center. The mayor’s office said in a statement posted on its website that three people had been killed, five wounded and several residential buildings destroyed during those attacks.

The government denies it uses artillery against residential areas, but that claim has come under substantial strain in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have been fighting the Kiev government since April. Ukraine and Western countries have accused Moscow of backing the mutiny with weapons and soldiers, a claim the Russian government has repeatedly denied.

The West has also accused Russia of most likely providing the insurgents with surface-to-air missiles that may have been used to shoot down a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet over rebel-held territory on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.

Clashes erupted in central Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, as city authorities sought to clear away the remnants of a tent colony erected by demonstrators involved in the street uprising against pro-Russia President Viktor Yanukovych. At the time, protesters were angry about endemic corruption and wanted closer ties with the European Union.

In scenes reminiscent of that revolt, which climaxed with Yanukovych’s ouster in February, demonstrators set alight tires in their face-off against a volunteer battalion overseeing the clean-up operation.

In eastern Ukraine, government troops have made tentative progress in their strategy to retake Donetsk and other towns and cities. Armed forces have refrained from pitched urban battles, and instead favored pushing back their opponents with artillery fire. It has led to a growing number of civilians casualties.

Vishnevskiy Hospital, one of the city’s larger medical treatment facilities, is around 4 kilometers (less than 3 miles) from the main square. It has been used to provide treatment to civilian victims of the ongoing conflict.

“The hospital became a nightmare. This is absurd,” said 37-year old patient Dmitry Kozhur. “We came here to keep living, but now we are risking death.”

Kozhur said he now wants to join the 300,000 people that the mayor’s office says have already abandoned the once 1 million-person strong city.

As AP reporters were leaving the hospital, they heard the sound of four rounds of artillery being fired from a nearby neighborhood under rebel control. Although it wasn’t immediately possible to confirm the sequence of events, it appeared that the shells that hit the hospital may have been a response to rebel fire.

Neighbors of a house struck by rockets Wednesday said their homes were also near a position used by rebel artillery forces.

As the rebels struggle to push back Kiev’s forces, fears of Russian intervention have grown. Western leaders have accused Russia of massing troops on the border with Ukraine and supplying rebels with weapons..

“We’ve noted with concern a new quality and quantity of arms and equipment flowing across the border from Russia into Ukraine, reports of shelling across the border as well as further attacks by illegal armed groups on targets in eastern Ukraine,” said Sebastien Brabant, a spokesman for the EU’s foreign policy chief.

Russia has always denied such claims

The Ukrainian army strategy has focused on driving a wedge between Donetsk and the other main stronghold of Luhansk. Efforts to seal off the border with Russia have been thwarted as border troops come under sustained and heavy rocket fire. Ukraine says a lot of those attacks have been carried out by Russian troops, which Moscow also fervently denies.

In Kiev, demonstrators confronted city workers clearing a main square of long-standing barricades in a standoff that turned violent. A group of men set light to fuel-drenched tires and remonstrated with armed men from a pro-government battalion charged with protecting clean-up workers.

Dark plumes of acrid smoke from burning rubber rose above Independence Square as workers in high-visibility vests worked fast to dismantle barricades surrounding the main stage.

The square and surrounding streets were the site of huge winter protests that led to Yanukovych’s ouster. Despite the election in May of a successor — 48-year old billionaire confectionery tycoon Petro Poroshenko — many said they would continue to squat on the square to ensure the new authorities lived up to their promise to usher in an era of transparent and accountable rule.

Many Kiev residents have fumed over the months-long sit-in, however, complaining that it severely disrupts traffic and blights the city’s main thoroughfare.

City authorities have been negotiating with the protesters to clear the square since a new mayor was elected, but have met strong resistance from the several hundred demonstrators still camped out there.

While many barricades were removed Thursday, numerous tents remain in place.

___

Peter Leonard reported from Kiev. Juergen Baetz contributed to this report from Brussels.

Copyright The Associated Press

source url: http://www.wftv.com/news/ap/top-news/3-killed-5-injured-in-east-ukraine-fighting/ngxGF/

Alternative AP article EDITED

The text and title of this version of the AP article was also changed and adjusted to the false propaganda narrative.

Updated: 2:04 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014 | Posted: 2:03 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7, 2014
NATO pledges support to conflict-wracked Ukraine

By PETER LEONARD

The Associated Press

KIEV, Ukraine —

NATO’s chief defied mounting Russian belligerence Thursday with a pledge to provide assistance to Ukraine, which is battling to quash an insurgency being waged by pro-Russia rebels in the country’s east.

The show of support from Anders Fogh Rasmussen comes as government troops increasingly focus their push to claw back rebel-held territory on the stronghold of Donetsk. Ukraine appears to be ratcheting up the urgency of its onslaught against the backdrop of an alleged escalation of Russian troop presence on the border.

“In response to Russia’s aggression, NATO is working even more closely with Ukraine to reform its armed forces and defense institutions,” Rasmussen said during a visit to the Ukrainian capital, Kiev.

In a sign of sagging morale among rebel forces, separatist authorities issued a desperate plea for assistance Thursday, complaining in a statement that a “critical situation has developed with the militia’s food, uniform and ammunition supplies.”

In Donetsk, sustained shelling struck residential buildings and a hospital, killing at least four people and wounding 10 others, local officials said.

Mortar fire struck the Vishnevskiy Hospital on Thursday morning, killing one and wounding five others, Donetsk city council spokesman Maxim Rovensky told The Associated Press.

“There was a sudden explosion,” witness Dr. Anna Kravtsova said. “A mortar round flew through the window.”

The shelling, which destroyed an array of equipment in the dentistry unit, also hit three nearby apartment buildings.

It followed a night of shelling in another neighborhood as the fighting between the government and pro-Russian separatists is inching ever closer to the city center. The mayor’s office said in a statement posted on its website that three people had been killed, five wounded and several residential buildings destroyed during those attacks.

The government denies it uses artillery against residential areas, but that claim has come under substantial strain in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary.

Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have been fighting the Kiev government since April. Ukraine and Western countries have accused Moscow of backing the mutiny with weapons and soldiers. The West accused Russia of most likely providing the insurgents with surface-to-air missiles that may have been used to shoot down a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet over rebel-held territory on July 17, killing all 298 people on board.

The Russian government has repeatedly denied all those charges.

More recently, Moscow has drawn accusations it is attempting to sow more instability with an intimidating show of force by dispatching what NATO estimates is 20,000 troops to Ukraine’s eastern border. That deployment has led many to speculate Russia may pursue an incursion under the guise of restoring stability to eastern Ukraine.

“I call on Russia to step back from the brink. Step back from the border. Do not use peacekeeping as an excuse for war-making,” Rasmussen said.

While stopping short of committing to direct assistance in Ukraine’s ongoing conflict, Rasmussen said that NATO would intensify its cooperation with Ukraine on defense planning and reform.

Hours before Rasmussen’s arrival, clashes erupted in central Kiev as city authorities sought to clear away the remnants of a tent colony erected by demonstrators involved in the street uprising against pro-Russia President Viktor Yanukovych. At the time, protesters were angry about endemic corruption and wanted closer ties with the European Union.

In scenes reminiscent of that revolt, which climaxed with Yanukovych’s ouster in February, demonstrators set alight tires in their face-off against a volunteer battalion overseeing the clean-up operation.

In eastern Ukraine, government troops have made tentative progress in their strategy to retake Donetsk and other towns and cities. Armed forces have refrained from pitched urban battles, and instead favored pushing back their opponents with artillery fire. It has led to a growing number of civilians casualties.

Vishnevskiy Hospital, one of the city’s larger medical treatment facilities, is around 4 kilometers (less than 3 miles) from the main square. It has been used to provide treatment to civilian victims of the ongoing conflict.

“The hospital became a nightmare. This is absurd,” said 37-year old patient Dmitry Kozhur. “We came here to keep living, but now we are risking death.”

Kozhur said he now wants to join the 300,000 people that the mayor’s office says have already abandoned the once 1 million-person strong city.

As AP reporters were leaving the hospital, they heard the sound of four rounds of artillery being fired from a nearby neighborhood under rebel control. Although it wasn’t immediately possible to confirm the sequence of events, it appeared that the shells that hit the hospital may have been a response to rebel fire.

Neighbors of a house struck by rockets Wednesday said their homes were also near a position used by rebel artillery forces.

The Ukrainian military’s strategy has focused on driving a wedge between Donetsk and the other main stronghold of Luhansk. Efforts to seal off the border with Russia have been thwarted as border troops come under sustained and heavy rocket fire. Ukraine says a lot of those attacks have been carried out by Russian troops, which Moscow also fervently denies.

___

Karmanau reported from Donetsk, Ukraine. Juergen Baetz contributed to this report from Brussels.

Copyright The Associated Press

source url: http://www.wftv.com/news/ap/international/3-killed-5-injured-in-east-ukraine-fighting/ngxGF/

Article 2

Below are two versions of another article published and edited today by the CBC that have seemingly been scrubbed to avoid mentioning the violent crackdown in Kiev today as well as title and url “wording” changes like Article 1 above. Since it was a little more subtle, other than adding irrelevant Harper Regime Minister photo-op vote pandering dribblings, and done behind the scenes within the slideshow scripts, we’ll present both for further review of the text portion. Of special concern is the image swaps (where the text 1 of 13 is located in the article) which are explained further down. The most noteworthy is image 1, the removal of the violent crackdown in Kiev. Please note that this article is a combo of files from the AP (Associated Propaganda) as well as Reuters in cahoots with The Canadian Press.

Russia bans food imports from Canada, other countries for 1 year
Ban covers meat, fish, milk, fruit, vegetables from Canada, the U.S., EU

The Canadian Press Posted: Aug 07, 2014 5:31 AM ET
Last Updated: Aug 07, 2014 9:53 AM ET

Russia is responding to fresh sanctions from Canada, the U.S. and other countries with a ban on food imports for a year.

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says the ban covers Canada, the U.S. the European Union, Australia, Norway and covers:

Meat.
Fish.
Milk and milk products.
Fruit and vegetables.

The move announced Thursday was taken on orders from President Vladimir Putin in response to sanctions imposed over the crisis in Ukraine. The ban will cost Western farmers billions of dollars but also isolates Russian consumers from world trade to a degree unseen since Soviet days.

Russia’s sanctions will mostly affect Canada’s pork industry. Canada’s agricultural exports to Russia amounted to $563 million in 2012, according to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and most of them were frozen pork.

Canada on Wednesday slapped new sanctions and travel bans on several top Russian and Ukrainian politicians and groups with ties to Putin’s government. Those sanctions, imposed in co-ordination with the U.S. and the EU, came amid reports Russia is massing thousands of troops along the Ukrainian border.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has frequently said Russia’s occupation of the Crimean Peninsula and provocative military activity in eastern Ukraine is a “grave concern” to Canada and the world.

Harper said Canada is prepared to take further actions if Putin’s government continues its military aggression.

Russian economy already showing effects

The announcement saw Russian bond yields rise to their highest levels in years and Moscow’s already reeling share prices extend a sell-off.

Agriculture Minister Nikolai Fyodorov acknowledged that the measures would cause a short-term spike in inflation, but said he did not see a danger in the medium or long term. He said Russia would compensate with more imports of products from other suppliers such as Brazilian meat and New Zealand cheese.

Russia Sanctions

A woman shops at a supermarket in downtown Moscow on Thursday. Russia’s new sanctions were made in response to sanctions imposed on Russia by the West over the crisis in Ukraine. (Ivan Sekretarev/Associated Press)

Russia depends heavily on imported foodstuffs — most of it from the West — particularly in the largest and most prosperous cities such as Moscow. In 2013 the EU’s agricultural exports to Russia totalled $15.8 billion US, while the U.S. Department of Agriculture says food and agricultural imports from the U.S. amounted to $1.3 billion.

Medvedev argued that the ban would give Russian farmers, who have struggled to compete with Western products, a good chance to increase their market share.

But experts said that local producers will find it hard to fill the gap left by the ban, as the nation’s agricultural sector has continued to suffer from poor efficiency and shortage of funds.

While the government claimed it will move quickly to replace Western imports by importing more food from Latin America, Turkey and ex-Soviet nations to avoid empty shelves and price hikes, analysts predicted that it will further speed up inflation.

Moscow will be hit hard

The damage to consumers inflicted by the ban will be felt particularly hard in big cities like Moscow, where imported food fills an estimated 60-70 per cent of the market.

Russians have relished imported food since the fall of the Soviet Union, when year-round supplies of fresh fruit and vegetables arrived and ubiquitous cheap American frozen chicken quarters became known as “Bush’s legs” after the then president.

Medvedev said Russia is also considering banning Western carriers from flying over Russia on flights to and from Asia — a move that would significantly swell costs and increase flight time. He said a decision on that hasn’t been made yet.

Protesters hold a Molotov cocktail during clashes with pro-government forces at Independence Square in Kyiv on Thursday. Tensions flared in the square, the scene of street protests that toppled a Moscow-backed president in February, when protesters still camped there clashed with city workers who tried to clear away their tents.

1 of 13

Russia may also introduce restrictions regarding imports of planes, navy vessels and cars, Medvedev said, but added that the government will realistically assess its own production potential.

Medvedev made it clear that Russia hopes that the sanctions will make the West revise its policy and stop trying to pressure Russia with sanctions.

“We didn’t want such developments, and I sincerely hope that our partners will put a pragmatic economic approach above bad policy considerations,” he said, adding that the ban could be lifted earlier if the West shows a “constructive approach.”

If the West doesn’t change course, Russia may follow up by introducing restrictions regarding imports of planes, navy vessels, cars and other industrial products, Medvedev warned, but added that the government will move carefully.

“The government understands how important such co-operation is, and naturally, we have a realistic assessment of our own capacities,” he said.

EU Commission spokesman Frederic Vincent voiced regret about the ban. He said the commission still has to assess the potential impact, and reserves “the right to take action as appropriate.”

With files from The Associated Press and Reuters
© The Canadian Press, 2014

source url: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/russia-bans-food-imports-from-canada-other-countries-for-1-year-1.2729821

Article 2 EDITED

This article was a little more subtly edited as the day progressed. While we are still sifting through the text, the most noteworthy edit was to the slideshow (13 of 13) contained towards the end. The first 2 images were swapped out, one was related to the violent crackdown in Kiev and the other was of the situation in the hospital (see below for the urls and captions).

Russia sanctions show Putin’s ‘short-sighted desperation,’ Canada says
Ban covers meat, fish, milk, fruit, vegetables from Canada, the U.S., EU

CBC News Posted: Aug 07, 2014 5:31 AM ET
Last Updated: Aug 07, 2014 2:56 PM ET

Canada will not be intimidated by Russia’s ban on its food imports, Industry Minister James Moore said Thursday, warning that the sanctions will hurt Russian consumers more than Canadians.

“We will certainly look at the impact of these sanctions on the Canadian economy, but they will in no way cause us to have any hesitation in the principled position we’ve taken in opposing [Russian President] Vladimir Putin’s regime,” Moore said during a news conference in Montreal.

Russia responded Thursday to fresh sanctions from Canada, the U.S. and other countries with a ban on food imports for a year. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev announced that the ban includes Canada, the U.S. the European Union, Australia, Norway and others. Banned items include:

Meat.
Fish.
Milk and dairy products.
Fruit and vegetables.

Moore said the sanctions show the importance of expanding free trade, including the Harper government’s drive toward a free-trade deal with the European Union.

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz made similar comments in a statement Thursday, criticizing Putin’s “short-sighted desperation.”

“Our government will continue to put Canada’s national interests first, but we cannot allow business interests alone to dictate our foreign policy,” Ritz said.

Industry Minister James Moore

Industry Minister James Moore said Canada won’t back down in the face of sanctions from Russia. (Adrian Wyld/Canadian Press)

Russia’s move was taken on orders from Putin in response to sanctions imposed over the crisis in Ukraine. The ban will cost farmers in North America, Europe and Australia billions of dollars but also isolates Russian consumers from world trade to a degree unseen since Soviet days.

Canada had on Wednesday slapped new sanctions and travel bans on several top Russian and Ukrainian politicians and groups with ties to Putin’s government. Those sanctions, imposed in co-ordination with the U.S. and the EU, came amid reports Russia is massing thousands of troops along the Ukrainian border.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has frequently said Russia’s occupation of the Crimean Peninsula and provocative military activity in eastern Ukraine is a “grave concern” to Canada and the world.

Russia’s sanctions will mostly affect Canada’s pork industry. Canada’s agricultural exports to Russia amounted to $563 million in 2012, though Jim Laws of the Canadian Meat Council said that number dropped to $260 million last year.

Laws told CBC News Network pork producers will start to feel the effects right away, with up to 1,000 container loads of pork on ships bound for Russia.

Laws was optimistic that much of the meat could be re-directed to other countries or back to Canada, but said that the redirection alone would cost the industry “quite a bit of money.”

“We’re fortunate that we have many markets for pork around the world. Last year, we sold some $3.2 billion worth of pork to over 120 different countries. Russia, however, was the fourth most important market” behind U.S., Japan and China, he said.

Geoff Irvine, head of the Lobster Council of Canada, said the Russian sanctions are “not good for Canada.”

“For lobster, Russia is a small but potentially good market. The biggest impact on seafood in Canada will be on northern shrimp, and maybe cheaper fish like Pacific hake and herring.”

Russia depends heavily on imports

Russian stock indexes initially fell by about 1.5 per cent on the news before recovering most of the losses a few hours later.

Agriculture Minister Nikolai Fyodorov acknowledged that the measures would cause a short-term spike in inflation, but said he did not see a danger in the medium or long term. He said Russia would compensate with more imports of products from other suppliers such as Brazilian meat and New Zealand cheese.

Russia depends heavily on imported foodstuffs — most of it from the West — particularly in the largest and most prosperous cities such as Moscow. In 2013, the EU’s agricultural exports to Russia totalled $15.8 billion US, while the U.S. Department of Agriculture says food and agricultural imports from the U.S. amounted to $1.3 billion.

Russia Sanctions

A woman shops at a supermarket in downtown Moscow on Thursday. Russia’s new sanctions were made in response to sanctions imposed on Russia by the West over the crisis in Ukraine. (Ivan Sekretarev/Associated Press)

Medvedev argued that the ban would give Russian farmers, who have struggled to compete with Western products, a good chance to increase their market share.
But experts said that local producers will find it hard to fill the gap left by the ban, as the nation’s agricultural sector has continued to suffer from poor efficiency and shortage of funds.

While the government claimed it will move quickly to replace Western imports by importing more food from Latin America, Turkey and ex-Soviet nations to avoid empty shelves and price hikes, analysts predicted that it will further speed up inflation.

Chris Weafer, an analyst at Macro Advisory in Moscow, said the ban will likely speed up inflation and further cloud an already grim economic outlook. “Along with higher interest rates, higher food costs will mean that households have less money to spend and that will depress the economy,” he said.

Market watchers said consumers in the expensive food segment will suffer the most, losing access to goods like French cheeses and Parma ham, but others will also eventually feel the brunt as food variety will shrink and inflationary pressures increase. With retail chains stocked up for months ahead, the ban will take time to hurt, however.

The measure led to sardonic comments across Russian online media and liberal blogs, bringing reminiscences of empty store shelves during the Soviet times, but there was no immediate indication of consumers trying to stock up.

Moscow will be hit hard

The damage to consumers inflicted by the ban will be felt particularly hard in big cities like Moscow, where imported food fills an estimated 60-70 per cent of the market.

Russians have relished imported food since the fall of the Soviet Union, when year-round supplies of fresh fruit and vegetables arrived and ubiquitous cheap American frozen chicken quarters became known as “Bush’s legs” after the then president.

Medvedev said Russia is also considering banning Western carriers from flying over Russia on flights to and from Asia — a move that would significantly swell costs and increase flight time. He said a decision on that hasn’t been made yet.

A Ukrainian army sapper shows reporters an IED that pro-Russian separatists allegedly left behind during their retreat at a checkpoint outside the eastern Ukrainian village of Nikishyne on Aug. 1.

13 of 13

Russia may also introduce restrictions regarding imports of planes, navy vessels and cars, Medvedev said, but added that the government will realistically assess its own production potential.

Medvedev made it clear that Russia hopes that the sanctions will make the West revise its policy and stop trying to pressure Russia with sanctions.

“We didn’t want such developments, and I sincerely hope that our partners will put a pragmatic economic approach above bad policy considerations,” he said, adding that the ban could be lifted earlier if the West shows a “constructive approach.”

EU Commission spokesman Frederic Vincent voiced regret about the ban. He said the commission still has to assess the potential impact, and reserves “the right to take action as appropriate.”

With files from The Canadian Press, The Associated Press and Reuters

source url: http://www.cbc.ca/news/world/russia-sanctions-show-putin-s-short-sighted-desperation-canada-says-1.2729821

Article 2 Slideshow Images

Below are the original images that were in the slideshow. oddly enough they implicate the Kiev Regime. the first is from the violent crackdown that seems to be covered under a media blackout, while the second implicated the Kiev Regime’s ongoing aerial assault, bombardment and onslaught against Ukrainians in Donetsk.

Protesters hold a Molotov cocktail during clashes with pro-government forces at Independence Square in Kyiv on Thursday. Tensions flared in the square, the scene of street protests that toppled a Moscow-backed president in February, when protesters still camped there clashed with city workers who tried to clear away their tents

Local residents cry and hug each other as they sit in a hospital basement being used as a bomb shelter after shelling, in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, on Aug. 7. Fighting in the rebel stronghold of Donetsk claimed more civilian casualties, bringing new calls from Russian nationalists for President Vladimir Putin to send in the army

People emerge the morning of Aug. 6 to inspect the rubble of damaged buildings following what was described as a airstrike by Ukrainian forces in Donetsk on Wednesday. NATO says it fears Russia is poised to invade under the pretext of humanitarian aid

A Ukrainian soldier mans a checkpoint in the eastern city of Debaltseve on Aug. 6. Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday slapped a one-year ban and restriction on food and agricultural product imports from nations that have imposed sanctions on Russia over its defiant stance on Ukraine

People emerge the morning of Aug. 6 to inspect the rubble of damaged buildings following what was described as a airstrike by Ukrainian forces in Donetsk on Wednesday. NATO says it fears Russia is poised to invade under the pretext of humanitarian aid

Armed pro-Russian separatists stand guard at a checkpoint in the settlement of Yasynuvata, outside Donetsk, on Aug. 5. NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu said in an emailed statement that the treaty organization was concerned Moscow could use the pretext of peacekeeping as an excuse to send troops into eastern Ukraine

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko, second from left, meets with heads of security and force services in Kyiv on Aug. 6. Kyiv denies launching an artillery barrage and air raids against residential neighbourhoods in Donestsk and accuses the rebels of firing at civilian areas, claims that Human Rights Watch and others have questioned

A man removes debris from a ruined building on the outskirts of the eastern Ukrainian town of Slovyansk on Aug. 6

Ukrainian servicemen on board an armoured vehicle patrol the eastern Ukrainian town of Kramatorsk on Aug. 5. Airstrikes and artillery fire between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian troops in the region have brought the shadow of war closer than ever to the urban core of some of the east’s larger cities

Ukrainian servicemen fire artillery rounds against pro-Russian separatists near Pervomaisk, in the Luhansk region, on Aug. 2

A Ukrainian army sapper shows reporters an IED that pro-Russian separatists allegedly left behind during their retreat at a checkpoint outside the eastern Ukrainian village of Nikishyne on Aug. 1

Article 2 Image Swaps

Below are the 2 new replacements for images 1 and 2 that were edited midway through the day.

Boys play a game of war in the eastern Ukrainian town of Kramatorsk on Aug. 7, 2014. Russia responded Thursday to fresh sanctions from Canada, the U.S. and other countries with a ban on food imports for a year. The ban includes food stuffs like milk, fish, meat and vegetables.

Smoke billows from the flaming debris of a crashed Ukrainian fighter jet near the village of Zhdanivka, some 40 km northeast of the rebel stronghold of Donetsk, on Thursday. The the Sukhoi warplane was blasted out of the air while flying low over rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine, An AFP crew reported, with the parachute of at least one pilot opening up in the clear blue sky.

Suspiciously Missing image

The image below seems to be intended as a thumbnail related to the violent crackdown against protesters in Kiev as it is also located in the alternative Associated propaganda article presented above.

 

We welcome any and all contributions to this summary so that we may present these findings to a much wider audience as well as various local, national and international media, NGO’s, public officials and law enforcement agencies at hom,e and abroad. It is our understanding that spreading propaganda that results in terrorist activities, recruitment, harm and/or death against innocent civilians is a serious violation of local, State, Provincial, National, Federal and International laws, depending on the jurisdictions.
 


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#Harper’s #Ukraine Delegation Hid 3rd Party Sniper Facts from #cdnpoli #CPC #GPC #NDP #LPC

On 05 March 2014 the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirmed that the leaked phone conversation between Estonia’s Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton on 26 February 2014, that was previously posted online, was accurate and the call had indeed taken place. This information should have been known by the Harper Delegation as the phone conversation was days before they arrived. If they were not informed then there are some serious questions that they should be demanding from Catherine Ashton and their allies within the EU/NATO as well as Russia and deescalating the situation immediately. If Harper, or anyone else in the delegation was aware of this, then we have some issues of our own and we should begin the process of removing them from office immediately, conduction a criminal investigation and calling for immediate elections.

This conversation revealed that there was 3rd party involvement which implies that the ousting of the former President may not be legitimate and the new interim government may be illegitimate based upon the Constitution of Ukraine. There seems to be sufficient evidence that indicates that someone within the opposition coalition leadership was directly involved in the sniper shootings that killed and wounded civilian protesters as well as the riot police forces. Keep in mind that these snipers were initially attributed directly to the President, which led to the rapid escalation of violence that killed and wounded many more Ukrainians. This escalation and assumption of guilt placed great pressures the Parliament into hastily forming the new interim government without conducting a thorough investigation.

It is with great disgust, displeasure, disappointment and sadness that we have to provide these troubling revelations about what has been hidden behind the scenes regarding the truth about the escalation of violence in Ukraine against the People of Ukraine that were protesting corruption, fraud and abuse of power by the Yanukovych Regime. The most troubling aspect is how the contemptuous, corrupt and fraudulent Harper Government has once again abused their own power in order to mislead the People of Canada, in lockstep with their EU/NATO allies, with their escalating rhetoric and inflammatory war mongering in order to target Vladimir Putin, whom we are no fan of. It is also of great concern to us how this has adversely affected the diverse minorities and Russian speaking Peoples of Ukraine.

In addition, due to the serious implications and the long term ramifications, we are sickened and disgusted by the utter lack of integrity by the yellow journalists, cowardly caucus members and the controlled Opposition Party’s, as these revelations should have been researched further and reported more accurately by the media conglomerates at CBC, CTV, Global and Postmedia, but it has become crystal clear that they lack integrity and/or the necessary skills to be trusted.

Let’s all be honest and just call a spade a spade and face the hard facts and realities, real people have been unnecessarily killed, wounded and displaced, millions upon millions of dollars in damages have needlessly inflicted by 3rd parties with arterial motives and profiteering in mind and this is just the beginning as the real People of Ukraine will have to pay the costs and will only be forced to suffer under the rule of another set of corrupt oligarchs and capitalists.

So now we shall begin to explore a conversation between Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton regarding Ukraine snipers and the new government, now that we know what Harper’s delegation to Ukraine was trying to hide.

This call that has been suspiciously concealed from the public reveals the ugly truth that the same 3rd party snipers were involved in the shooting and killing of both police and protesters. In the leaked call Minister Paet explains that the violence is still an ongoing issue of great concern. They they also discussed their impressions of what is happening in the country as the “revolution” is unfolding and the extreme pressures that were being exerted on the Ukrainian Parliament by uninvited visitors during the night and concerns about potential for retaliation in connection to President Viktor Yanukovych’s former chief of staff Andriy Klyuyev being publicly shot and beaten in front of the Parliament building by gunmen on the streets.

Minister Paet also revealed astonishing information and details about photos and evidence that the same type of bullets were used in the killing of both innocent civilians and riot police officers in Kiev. He also stated that this confirms the rumours that the third party snipers were not loyalists connected to President Viktor Yanukovych, but were employed by somebody within the new coalition leadership.

If that wasn’t enough, the most damning revelation is that the newly formed Opposition Government cannot be trusted as due to their own dirty pasts and that it is clear that, not only has the violence not deescalated, but the opposition leadership has not fulfilled their side of the agreement that was signed with President Viktor Yanukovych on 21 February 2014, that required the immediate disarmament of all protesters with illegal weapons.

It was also discussed that it is extremely disturbing that the coalition leadership does not seem interested in properly investigating what actually happen regarding the 3rd party snipers and seem to be preventing the administering of justice and accountability. Minister Paet goes on to state that these striking revelations actually discredit the newly formed opposition leadership from the beginning and that they are also not trusted by People of Ukraine.


The Press Release

On the Telephone Conversation between Foreign Minister Paet and EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton
05.03.2014

The recording of a telephone conversation between Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and High Representative Catherine Ashton that has been leaked online is authentic.

The conversation between Paet and Ashton took place on 26 February after the Estonian Foreign Minister’s return from his visit to Ukraine. His visit took place last week, soon after the end of street violence in Kiev.

Foreign Minister Paet was giving an overview of what he had heard the previous day in Kiev and expressed concern over the situation on the ground. We reject the claim that Paet was giving an assessment of the opposition’s involvement in the violence.

`It is extremely regrettable that phone calls are being intercepted,’ said Paet. ’The fact that this phone call has been leaked is not a coincidence,’ added Paet.

Dear journalists!

Today, at 5 pm Foreign Minister Urmas Paet is answering journalist´s questions in the Foreign Ministry.

Please enter through the guest entrance, Lauteri 2.

SPOKESPERSON´S OFFICE
637 7654
533 66 159
press@mfa.ee

http://www.vm.ee/?q=node/19353


The Phone Call

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UlJk2cyP8p0


Remember, politics is a contact sport, like hockey, so please feel free to add quick contributions, observations and relevant information as a comment below!

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This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in an effort to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. and intend its use to be for education and instructional purposes only. Therefore, we believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond “fair use,” you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

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Is #Harper’s #CPC a modern day #cdnpoli #Fascist Party or is #NeoQaeda a better term?

Please note that the Harper Regime Loyalists and their globalist investors have been equating the term “fascists” as well as “communists” and “socialists” and “terrorists” towards those that support anything other than their neo-consesrvative/neo-liberal/zionist ideological positions for quite some time but this compilation is a very good comparison indeed. Below this segment we will share a lesser know article by George Orwell from 1944 titled “What is Fascism?” that is worth consideration as it is our opinion that the Harper Regime is a hybrid of all of the worst that encompasses all of the colonialist/imperialist/interventionist “isms” combined with some anglo-white supremacy sprinkled on top. Maybe they are a new breed that requires an entirely new defining term so we shall take this opportunity to coin one that may well fit the bill: Neo-Qaeda


The word fascism has been bandied around a lot by people angry with Mr. Harper, so let’s take a look at the 14 defining characteristics of fascism to see if they’re truly relevant to the situation Canada finds itself in.

http://www.rense.com/general37/char.htm

Once we’ve done that, we can ask whether the Harper government demonstrates those indicators of fascism. It turns out there’s more than a few damning examples.

Powerful continuing Nationalism

This link speaks for itself

http://www.ipolitics.ca/2011/12/02/lawrence-martin-the-rise-in-canada-of-all-places-of-right-wing-nationalism/

Identifying Enemies/Scapegoats

The term terrorism gets slung around a lot to justify all sorts of things

http://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/canada-politics/harper-government-poised-fast-track-anti-terrorism-bill-220341767.html

Rampant Sexism

Mr Harper’s government is surprisingly sexist.

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/columnists/2008/09/10/harpers_conservatives_a_sexist_bunch.html

Obsession with National Security

Canada’s new National Security state

http://www.hilltimes.com/dobbins-view/2010/11/22/harper-government-constructs-a-national-security-state/24926

and here

http://cips.uottawa.ca/six-ways-for-harper-to-reclaim-the-national-security-agenda/

It is in fact unsurprising that more than one journalist is connecting the dots on the national security state

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/murray-dobbin/2009/11/stephen-harper’s-national-security-state

Here’s extensive spying on activists

http://www.vancouverobserver.com/politics/harper-governments-extensive-spying-anti-oilsands-groups-revealed-fois

and on First Nations

http://www.mediacoop.ca/story/first-nations-under-surveillance/7434

Corporate Power is Protected

Oddly enough, corporations don’t seem to be struggling like ordinary Canadians in Harper’s Canada. Why do you think that is?

http://www.ipolitics.ca/2012/10/31/frances-russell-stephen-harper-and-the-triumph-of-the-corporation-state/

and he is a cheerleader for new corporate super-rights that surpass and override those of citizens and indeed even the nation

http://www.canadians.org/blog/public-increasingly-opposed-corporate-super-rights-harper-should-take-them-out-ceta

Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts

Arts? Seriously? Who cares about arts?

http://www.thestar.com/news/politics/federalelection/2008/09/24/ordinary_folks_dont_care_about_arts_harper.html

let’s cut the arts

http://www.straight.com/arts/harpers-arts-cuts-slammed-across-canada

but the arts aren’t nearly as much a target as intellectuals, science, and evidence.

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2013/10/13/harpers_war_on_science_continues_with_a_vengeance.html

with cutbacks to research

http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/research-cutbacks-by-government-alarm-scientists-1.2490081?cmp=fbtl

And it’s apparently not enough to suppress modern research, we are also destroying decades of previous research, to impoverish the entire scientific community with but only book burning, but effectively whole library burning

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2014/01/09/dismantling_of_dfo_libraries_a_blow_to_democracy_salutin.html

In fact, just watch this, it’ll break your heart if you care about facts entering our decision making process at all

http://www.cbc.ca/fifth/episodes/2013-2014/the-silence-of-the-labs

Rampant Cronyism and Corruption

Ah yes, mustn’t forget the rampant cronyism.

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2008/01/01/tories_cronyism_rampant_critics_say.html

We’re actually reaching for cronyism on an international scale

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/council-canadians/2013/11/harpers-new-global-markets-action-plan-corporate-cronyism-o

Disdain for Human Rights

The Harper government has nothing but disdain for human rights.

http://nupge.ca/content/11188/harper-government-gives-human-rights-cold-shoulder

FIrst nations rights violated here

http://www.mcgilldaily.com/2008/11/first_nations_rights_violated_by_canadas_refusal_to_ratify_un_treaty/

Trying to keep human rights out of CETA

http://www.canadians.org/fr/node/9556

and more about how for Mr Harper, trade trumps human rights across the board

http://www.canadians.org/blog/stephen-harper-trade-trumps-human-rights

or how about the right to protest?

http://www.globalresearch.ca/police-state-canada-harper-government-enacts-law-threatening-masked-protesters-with-ten-year-jail-terms/5340268

In fact, it’s clear he really doesn’t care for First Nations people at all

http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/01/30/stephen-harper-lists-his-governments-priorities-doesnt-say-a-word-about-aboriginals-despite-idle-no-more-movement/

Supremacy of the Military

Harper’s military policy is decidedly imperialist

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2012/06/08/walkom_is_stephen_harpers_global_military_policy_delusional_or_just_plain_mad.html

Here Harper refuses to sign an arms trade treaty to combat militarism out of control

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/harper-refuses-to-sign-landmark-arms-trade-treaty/article14539869/

Controlled Mass Media

Here we’ve got taxpayers funding Harper’s own version of ‘journalism’

http://o.canada.com/news/stephen-harper-24-seven-video/

which is a little North Korean-esque in its obsessive message control

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/01/09/stephen-harper-24-seven-youtube_n_4572535.html

and taking control of the CBC

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/04/30/bill-c60-cbc-harper_n_3187821.html

Religion and Government Intertwined

Religion and politics together again in Canada

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/from-bible-bill-to-stephen-harper-the-evolution-of-faith-based-politics-1.1369490

You might even say he’s on an evangelical mission,

http://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2012/03/26/Harper-Evangelical-Mission/

Labour Power is Suppressed

And here’s an ongoing war on unions.

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2013/10/31/tasha-kheiriddin-forget-duffy-harpers-real-war-is-with-unions/

more union bashing here

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2013/10/24/more_unionbashing_as_stephen_harper_tries_to_deflect_attention_from_senate_walkom.html

and clearly more to come

http://thetyee.ca/News/2013/11/20/Signs-Harper-Is-Gearing-Up-to-Declare-War-on-Unions/

Obsession with Crime/Punishment

So obsessed with crime and punishment that even Texas says “whoa, that’s a bit much”

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/texas-conservatives-reject-harper-s-crime-plan-1.1021017

to the extent that we’re making prisons unsafe

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/11/02/prison-overcrowding-canada_n_4202144.html

but if we point out that the evidence doesn’t support the policy, there’s no sanity on that front

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/2010/11/17/harper_tough_on_crime_but_soft_on_facts.html

Fraudulent Elections

Not only did fraud absolutely take place, but the Harper government engaged in “trench warfare to prevent the case from coming to a hearing on its merits.”

http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/05/24/electoral-fraud-did-take-place-in-2011-federal-vote-but-it-didnt-affect-outcome-judge-rules/

Feeding into a mindset that they have the right to whatever they can get away with

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/in-robo-calls-ruling-a-wider-spectre-of-electoral-fraud-emerges/article12185601/

Thanks to Shaun Fryer for compiling most of these links which saved me a ton of time when I yoinked his list. Please, if you’ve got more links to share to back this up, share them in the comments. Every checkmark on the fascism list brings our country closer to the equivalent of Mussolini’s Italy, Franco’s Spain, Suharto’s Indonesia, Pinochet’s Chile, and yes, even Hitler’s Germany. Even one is a problem. Buckle up, Canada

screen reader text

What is Fascism?

George Orwell – TRIBUNE 1944

Of all the unanswered questions of our time, perhaps the most important is: ‘What is Fascism?’

One of the social survey organizations in America recently asked this question of a hundred different people, and got answers ranging from ‘pure democracy’ to ‘pure diabolism’. In this country if you ask the average thinking person to define Fascism, he usually answers by pointing to the German and Italian régimes. But this is very unsatisfactory, because even the major Fascist states differ from one another a good deal in structure and ideology.

It is not easy, for instance, to fit Germany and Japan into the same framework, and it is even harder with some of the small states which are describable as Fascist. It is usually assumed, for instance, that Fascism is inherently warlike, that it thrives in an atmosphere of war hysteria and can only solve its economic problems by means of war preparation or foreign conquests. But clearly this is not true of, say, Portugal or the various South American dictatorships. Or again, antisemitism is supposed to be one of the distinguishing marks of Fascism; but some Fascist movements are not antisemitic. Learned controversies, reverberating for years on end in American magazines, have not even been able to determine whether or not Fascism is a form of capitalism. But still, when we apply the term ‘Fascism’ to Germany or Japan or Mussolini’s Italy, we know broadly what we mean. It is in internal politics that this word has lost the last vestige of meaning. For if you examine the press you will find that there is almost no set of people — certainly no political party or organized body of any kind — which has not been denounced as Fascist during the past ten years. Here I am not speaking of the verbal use of the term ‘Fascist’. I am speaking of what I have seen in print. I have seen the words ‘Fascist in sympathy’, or ‘of Fascist tendency’, or just plain ‘Fascist’, applied in all seriousness to the following bodies of people:

Conservatives: All Conservatives, appeasers or anti-appeasers, are held to be subjectively pro-Fascist. British rule in India and the Colonies is held to be indistinguishable from Nazism. Organizations of what one might call a patriotic and traditional type are labelled crypto-Fascist or ‘Fascist-minded’. Examples are the Boy Scouts, the Metropolitan Police, M.I.5, the British Legion. Key phrase: ‘The public schools are breeding-grounds of Fascism’.

Socialists: Defenders of old-style capitalism (example, Sir Ernest Benn) maintain that Socialism and Fascism are the same thing. Some Catholic journalists maintain that Socialists have been the principal collaborators in the Nazi-occupied countries. The same accusation is made from a different angle by the Communist party during its ultra-Left phases. In the period 1930-35 the Daily Worker habitually referred to the Labour Party as the Labour Fascists. This is echoed by other Left extremists such as Anarchists. Some Indian Nationalists consider the British trade unions to be Fascist organizations.

Communists: A considerable school of thought (examples, Rauschning, Peter Drucker, James Burnham, F. A. Voigt) refuses to recognize a difference between the Nazi and Soviet régimes, and holds that all Fascists and Communists are aiming at approximately the same thing and are even to some extent the same people. Leaders in The Times (pre-war) have referred to the U.S.S.R. as a ‘Fascist country’. Again from a different angle this is echoed by Anarchists and Trotskyists.

Trotskyists: Communists charge the Trotskyists proper, i.e. Trotsky’s own organization, with being a crypto-Fascist organization in Nazi pay. This was widely believed on the Left during the Popular Front period. In their ultra-Right phases the Communists tend to apply the same accusation to all factions to the Left of themselves, e.g. Common Wealth or the I.L.P.

Catholics: Outside its own ranks, the Catholic Church is almost universally regarded as pro-Fascist, both objectively and subjectively;

War resisters: Pacifists and others who are anti-war are frequently accused not only of making things easier for the Axis, but of becoming tinged with pro-Fascist feeling.

Supporters of the war: War resisters usually base their case on the claim that British imperialism is worse than Nazism, and tend to apply the term ‘Fascist’ to anyone who wishes for a military victory. The supporters of the People’s Convention came near to claiming that willingness to resist a Nazi invasion was a sign of Fascist sympathies. The Home Guard was denounced as a Fascist organization as soon as it appeared. In addition, the whole of the Left tends to equate militarism with Fascism. Politically conscious private soldiers nearly always refer to their officers as ‘Fascist-minded’ or ‘natural Fascists’. Battle-schools, spit and polish, saluting of officers are all considered conducive to Fascism. Before the war, joining the Territorials was regarded as a sign of Fascist tendencies. Conscription and a professional army are both denounced as Fascist phenomena.

Nationalists: Nationalism is universally regarded as inherently Fascist, but this is held only to apply to such national movements as the speaker happens to disapprove of. Arab nationalism, Polish nationalism, Finnish nationalism, the Indian Congress Party, the Muslim League, Zionism, and the I.R.A. are all described as Fascist but not by the same people.

* * *

It will be seen that, as used, the word ‘Fascism’ is almost entirely meaningless. In conversation, of course, it is used even more wildly than in print. I have heard it applied to farmers, shopkeepers, Social Credit, corporal punishment, fox-hunting, bull-fighting, the 1922 Committee, the 1941 Committee, Kipling, Gandhi, Chiang Kai-Shek, homosexuality, Priestley’s broadcasts, Youth Hostels, astrology, women, dogs and I do not know what else.

Yet underneath all this mess there does lie a kind of buried meaning. To begin with, it is clear that there are very great differences, some of them easy to point out and not easy to explain away, between the régimes called Fascist and those called democratic. Secondly, if ‘Fascist’ means ‘in sympathy with Hitler’, some of the accusations I have listed above are obviously very much more justified than others. Thirdly, even the people who recklessly fling the word ‘Fascist’ in every direction attach at any rate an emotional significance to it. By ‘Fascism’ they mean, roughly speaking, something cruel, unscrupulous, arrogant, obscurantist, anti-liberal and anti-working-class. Except for the relatively small number of Fascist sympathizers, almost any English person would accept ‘bully’ as a synonym for ‘Fascist’. That is about as near to a definition as this much-abused word has come.

But Fascism is also a political and economic system. Why, then, cannot we have a clear and generally accepted definition of it? Alas! we shall not get one — not yet, anyway. To say why would take too long, but basically it is because it is impossible to define Fascism satisfactorily without making admissions which neither the Fascists themselves, nor the Conservatives, nor Socialists of any colour, are willing to make. All one can do for the moment is to use the word with a certain amount of circumspection and not, as is usually done, degrade it to the level of a swearword.

1944

THE END

____BD____

George Orwell: ‘What is Fascism?’

First published: Tribune. — GB, London. — 1944.

Reprinted:
— ‘The Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell’. — 1968.

____

Machine-readable version: O. Dag

Last modified on: 2013-08-30

[The book cover page]

George Orwell

The ‘CEJL’

© 1968 Harcourt Brace Jovanovich

continue reading sources:


Remember, politics is a contact sport, like hockey, so please feel free to add quick contributions, observations and relevant information as a comment below!

Contact us if you would like to contribute to our collaborative efforts or would like to share/submit articles, data or additional content, feel free to add feedback, additional info, alternative contact details, related links, articles, anonymous submission, etc. as a comment below, via web-form, through social media outlets or email us directly and confidentially at: dumpharper [at] live [dot] ca


This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in an effort to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. and intend its use to be for education and instructional purposes only. Therefore, we believe this constitutes a ‘fair use’ of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond “fair use,” you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

ShareAlike Statement: https://dumpharper.wordpress.com/sharealike/

Secret #TPP, #cdnpoli & Intellectual Property: Wake UP all 3 –> #CPC + #NDP + #LPC!

So, what does the intellectual Harper Regime have to hide from “We the People”, aka: individual citizens, aka: taxpayers? Or, are “We the People” simply the property of faceless corporations? Why is the entire Canadian MSM establishment MIA with regards to TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership), the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP?

Secret TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership)
What are the Secrets in the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership)?

If it weren’t bad enough that “We the People” are force fed diversionary neo-conservative scandal after scandal after scandal, while they secretly huddle away in their secret globalist enclaves with their secret globalist committees and secretive globalist cabals. Having to wait for “Anonymous” sources and WikiLeaks for leaked drafts of secret long term “trade” agreements that affect everyone is criminal in the opinion of many. That being stated, we thought we would provide a beginning point, a primer if you will, for those that may be concerned and/or interested. Do NOT allow this to “agreement” to pass blindly and unnoticed! If you care about anything at all upon reviewing the information below, feel free to comment, share, build upon and distribute it in the most expeditious manner possible…

Say No to Internet Censorship
Fill out this form to send world leaders our letter. They need to Say No to Internet Censorship before it’s too late.

Secret TPP treaty: Advanced Intellectual Property chapter for all 12 nations with negotiating positions WikiLeaks release: November 13, 2013

Today, 13 November 2013, WikiLeaks released the secret negotiated draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP. The WikiLeaks release of the text comes ahead of the decisive TPP Chief Negotiators summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013. The chapter published by WikiLeaks is perhaps the most controversial chapter of the TPP due to its wide-ranging effects on medicines, publishers, internet services, civil liberties and biological patents. Significantly, the released text includes the negotiation positions and disagreements between all 12 prospective member states.

The TPP is the forerunner to the equally secret US-EU pact TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership), for which President Obama initiated US-EU negotiations in January 2013. Together, the TPP and TTIP will cover more than 60 per cent of global GDP.

Read full press release here: https://wikileaks.org/tpp/pressrelease.html


Description: This is the confidential draft treaty chapter from the Intellectual Property group of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) talks between the United States, Japan, Mexico, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Chile, Singapore, Peru, Vietnam, New Zealand and Brunei Darussalam. The treaty is being negotiated in secret by delegations from each of the 12 countries, who together account for 40% of global GDP. The chapter covers proposed international obligations and enforcement mechanisms for copyright, trademark and patent law, and includes the combined positions of all of the parties as they were by the end of August 2013. The document was produced and distributed to the Chief Negotiators
on August 30, 2013, after the 19th Round of Negotiations at Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei.

Download: https://wikileaks.org/tpp/static/pdf/Wikileaks-secret-TPP-treaty-IP-chapter.pdf

Leak of TPP text on copyright Limitations and Exceptions Knowledge Ecology International 03 August 2012

Below is a leak of the negotiating text from the TPP trade agreement, on copyright limitations and exceptions. For some additional context on this issue, see: “What does the secret TPPA text say about copyright exceptions?”

http://keionline.org/node/1516

Malaysia Rejecting TPP as Agreement Causes Political Turmoil in Australia Written By Drew Wilson August 14, 2012 – The Trans-Pacific Partnership, an agreement that would, among other things, institute a global ISP level regime and three strikes law, allow corporations of any kind to operate above a countries local laws so long as their headquarters is located outside the country and further restrict limitations afforded to consumers in various countries (and that’s likely just the tip of the iceberg), has been back in the news once again for a number of reasons. We begin with the more dramatic developments coming out of Malaysia where the country is reportedly getting increasingly sceptical of the agreement altogether. From The Sun Daily:

http://www.zeropaid.com/news/101972/malaysia-rejecting-tpp-as-agreement-causes-political-turmoil-in-australia/

Civil Society Groups Oppose US and Australias TPP Proposal on Exceptions and Limitations | Electronic Frontier Foundation BY CAROLINA ROSSINI AUGUST 28, 2012

Civil Society groups from around the Pacific Region join forces to oppose the exceptions and limitations framework in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) proposed by the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) in a new joint statement [PDF] [TXT]. It reads:

We, the undersigned public interest organizations, oppose the current framework for exceptions and limitations proposed by the Office of the US Trade Representative (USTR) as the language stands in the August 3rd leaked text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP). It uses the most restrictive three-step test language, extends the test to exceptions and limitations not currently under the test and jeopardizes countries’ ability to set what best fit their needs. The US proposal misses opportunities to use the TPP to strengthen limitations and exceptions further.

The language in Paragraph 1 of the US proposal, specifically the excerpt “shall confine”, limits nations’ ability to seek a flexible exceptions and limitations system. This language would cause numerous potential problems for the kind of balance in copyright systems that the new USTR proposal claims to advance. Additionally, while the language in Paragraph 2, focused on copyright exceptions and limitations for the digital environment, may appear to reflect progress, the unintended consequences of the proposed three-step test language are many and will create chilling effects in the ability of users and entrepreneurs to innovate. This is a worse problem for those nations that do not adopt fair-use-like systems.

We firmly believe that countries should be able to tailor copyright exceptions and limitations to their domestic needs, and extend such limitations into the digital environment to create new exceptions as they find appropriate. We consider that the proposal pushed forward by New Zealand, Chile, Malaysia, Vietnam and Brunei—which also leaves to each country to decide what is appropriate for their digital environment—is a better solution.

https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/08/civil-society-groups-oppose-us-and-australia-proposal

Prominent Academics Respond to the TPP BY CAROLINA ROSSINI AUGUST 30, 2012

We asked several academics to let us know their thoughts about the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP). The TPP is a secretive, multi-national trade agreement that threatens to extend restrictive intellectual property (IP) laws across the globe and rewrite international rules on its enforcement, and it will do so in a way that will have extensive negative ramifications for users’ freedom of speech, privacy, access to information, and ability to innovate. Their responses are below.
https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2012/08/whats-wrong-tpp

Hollywood Gets to Party with TPP Negotiators, Public Interest Groups Get Thrown Out of Hotel from the yeah,-that-doesn’t-look-corrupt-at-all dept – We’ve been talking about the ridiculous levels of secrecy around the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) agreement — a trade agreement that is being designed to push through basically everything that Hollywood wants in international copyright law. Last week, we mentioned that various civil society groups were planning to hold an open meeting about TPP in the same hotel where the negotiations were being held (in Hollywood, of course). However, it appears that once the USTR found out about this, it got the hotel to cancel the group’s reservation at the hotel. According to Sean Flynn, the Associate Director of the Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP) at American University:

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120131/23161417605/hollywood-gets-to-party-with-tpp-negotiators-public-interest-groups-get-thrown-out-hotel.shtml

The TPP is a corporate coup d’état Kristinn Hrafnsson 15 November 2013, 23:51

The transparency site WikiLeaks has recently released part of a secret trade agreement called the Trans Pacific Partnership Treaty (TPP) being fast-tracked through the US Congress by US President Barrack Obama. What is astounding about the treaty, other than the fact that it is being pushed through without allowing US Congressmen access to the full text, is that only 3 people in each of the 12 prospective signatory countries, have access to the full text. Given that the treaty will affect countries which account for about 40% of the world GDP and over 800 million people, the fact that 600 corporate bankers are effectively hi-jacking the governments of the member countries and that only 3 people in each country know the full contents of the treaty, the document is a true step toward corporate fascism. The Voice of Russia spoke to WikiLeaks number 2 Kristinn Hrafnsson on the section of the TPP which they released.

http://voiceofrussia.com/2013_11_15/The-TPP-is-a-corporate-coup-d-tat-Kristinn-Hrafnsson-5798/
Download audio file: http://cdn.ruvr.ru/download/2013/11/15/20/11152013_ROBLES_HRAFNSSON_PART1.mp3

Outcry Follows Leak Of Secret Trade Negotiations Emma Woollacott, Forbes Contributor I cover internet piracy and copyright. Tech | 11/14/2013 @ 5:02PM

With two previous versions leaked, the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) was already causing rumblings of concern. But Wikileaks’ release this week of the latest draft has brought controversy to a peak.

The deal is currently being negotiated in secret between the US and Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam – and there are proposals to extend it further.

However, the 30,000-page draft agreement published by Wikileaks reveals intellectual property protection being broadened in an astonishing number of areas – from strengthening the rights of pharmaceutical companies to allowing the patenting of plants and animals. It is, unsurprisingly, supported by more than 600 large corporations, from Nike and Walmart to General Electric and Pfeizer.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/emmawoollacott/2013/11/14/outcry-follows-leak-of-secret-trade-negotiations/

Wikileaks does the work Congress and the media won’t – How can this tool believe what he’s saying? The “Free Trade” scam has helped the US in the last 50 years? How? Personal income has been in steady decline since the 1970s and whole industries have entirely disappeared. The latest scam is called Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The negotiation of this treaty-level trade agreement has been “fast tracked” so Congress hasn’t been involved. The negotiations have been held in secret. But Wikileaks comes to the rescue. A 95-page draft from the TPP agreement was released by WikiLeaks this week. We may not have a news media and we may not have a government, but we have have Wikileaks and the Internet.

http://www.brasschecktv.com/videos/corporate-criminality-/more-free-trade-bullshit-revealed.html

Trade deal could be bitter medicine by Phillip Dorling Technology News Political News November 14, 2013

WikiLeaks has exposed details of secret trade negotiations that could leave Australians paying more for drugs and medicines, movies, computer games and software, and be placed under surveillance as part of a US-led crackdown on internet piracy.

A leaked draft of a controversial chapter of the Trans Pacific Partnership free trade agreement reveals the negotiating positions of 12 countries – including Australia – on copyright, patents and other intellectual property issues, with a heavy focus on enforcement measures against internet piracy.

Intellectual property experts are critical of the draft treaty, which they say would help the multinational movie and music industries, software giants and pharmaceutical manufacturers to maintain and increase prices by reinforcing the rights of copyright and patent owners, clamping down on online piracy and raising obstacles to the introduction of generic drugs and medicines. Prime Minister Tony Abbott has indicated that he is keen to see the trade talks pushed to a conclusion next month, saying “there’s always horse-trading in these negotiations, but in the end … everyone is better off”’.

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/trade-deal-could-be-bitter-medicine-20131113-2xh4p.html

Patent plan to push up cost of medicines by Julia Medew Health Editor November 13, 2013

Australians are likely to pay more for medicines in coming years if intellectual property proposals contained in the powerful Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement go ahead.

The leaked treaty being negotiated by Australia and the US with 10 other Asia-Pacific countries reveals a range of measures that would enhance the ability of drug companies to extend and widen patents on drugs.

It also proposes compensation for companies that face delays in the granting or extension of patents, along with measures to ensure data exclusivity for companies so they can prevent competitors, specifically manufacturers of generic medicines, from using past clinic data to support new products.

The leaked TPP negotiations suggest drug companies will also be able to extend patent protection beyond the general 20-year limit by patenting different aspects of their products, such as an active ingredient, for a new use later. This process is called “evergreening”.

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/patent-plan-to-push-up-cost-of-medicines-20131113-2xh7c.html

Australia backs the US at every turn against its own consumers Peter Martin Economics correspondent November 14, 2013

In public the Australian government is on the side of consumers. Yet behind closed doors it is siding with the US government to block them at every turn.

The extraordinarily detailed information on negotiating positions released by WikiLeaks shows Australia repeatedly backing the interests of the US against the objections of countries including Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Singapore and Vietnam on questions involving intellectual property. Australia is often the only one of the 12 parties to the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations to do so.

In 2005 the High Court ruled that it was legal for Australians to use so-called ”mod chips” to bypass the copy-protection measures in Sony Playstations. In June this year a committee made up of both sides of Parliament unanimously recommended Australia amend its copyright law to put beyond doubt ”consumers’ rights to circumvent technological protection measures that control geographic market segmentation”. In other words, Australians would be completely free to modify their DVD machines to play discs made for use anywhere in the world. And to defeat the technologies that allow US giants such as Amazon and Apple to geographically segment their markets and charge Australians more than almost anyone else.

The committee’s report: ”At what cost? Information technology pricing and the Australian tax”, found Adobe software was 42 per cent more expensive than in the US, Microsoft products 66 per cent and hardware 46 per cent more expensive.
Yet in closed-door negotiations so secret the media was excluded from Australian briefings on their progress, Canberra has backed the US in trying to criminalise such measures. An amendment proposed by Canada and Singapore to the effect that it is legal to sell and import devices whose sole purpose is to defeat region coding, does not list Australia among its backers.

Canada and seven other countries want to make it clear that internet providers such as Australia’s iiNet cannot be held legally responsible for copyright infringement on their networks. In 2012 iiNet went to the High Court to enforce that right. But Australia and the US are listed in the negotiating document as opposing it.

In only one set of clauses does Australia consistently side with other countries against the US and those concern health. The US is pushing for even stronger patent rights for drug companies.

http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/australia-backs-the-us-at-every-turn-against-its-own-consumers-20131113-2xh0p.html

Wikileaks Release: Secret TPP Treaty. Text of Negotiated Draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter By Global Research News Global Research, November 13, 2013

Today, 13 November 2013, WikiLeaks released the secret negotiated draft text for the entire TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) Intellectual Property Rights Chapter. The TPP is the largest-ever economic treaty, encompassing nations representing more than 40 per cent of the world’s GDP. The WikiLeaks release of the text comes ahead of the decisive TPP Chief Negotiators summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, on 19-24 November 2013. The chapter published by WikiLeaks is perhaps the most controversial chapter of the TPP due to its wide-ranging effects on medicines, publishers, internet services, civil liberties and biological patents. Significantly, the released text includes the negotiation positions and disagreements between all 12 prospective member states.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/wikileaks-secret-negotiated-draft-of-the-trans-pacific-partnership-tpp-intellectual-property-rights-chapter/5358008

The Trans Pacific Partnership IP Chapter Leaks: The Battle Over Internet Service Provider Liability Thursday November 14, 2013

The leak of the Trans Pacific Partnership intellectual property chapter generated global coverage as full access to the proposed text provided a wake-up call on U.S. demands and the clear opposition from many TPP countries. My first post highlighted Canada’s opposition to many U.S. proposals, but nowhere is that more evident than in the section on Internet service provider liability. In fact, ISP liability in the TPP is shaping up to be a battle between Canada and the U.S., with countries lining up either in favour of a general notification obligation (Canada) or a notice-and-takedown system with the prospect of terminating subscriber Internet access and content blocking (U.S.).

The Canadian approach, which enjoys support from Chile, Brunei, New Zealand, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, and Mexico, establishes a general obligation to limit liability for ISPs for infringements that occur on their networks (the U.S. and Australia oppose this approach, Japan and Peru are undecided). The Canadian proposal includes more detailed descriptions of the limitations of liability, an exclusion for services primarily for enabling infringement, and a reminder that ISP liability is still subject to copyright limitations and exceptions. Under the Canadian model, ISP limitation of liability is conditioned on creating a notification process and “legal incentives for ISPs to comply with these procedures or remedies against ISPs that fail to comply.”

The U.S. proposal, which enjoys support from Australia (and support for some provisions from Singapore, New Zealand, and Peru) features far more conditions for ISP limitation of liability that could lead to subscriber service termination and content blocking (Canada, Brunei, Vietnam, and Mexico oppose the approach). Under the U.S. model, specific actions are required for specific limitations of liability. For example, a limitation of liability for automated caching is subject to four requirements, including “removing or disabling access, on receipt of an effective notification of claimed infringement, to cached material that has been removed or access to which has been disabled at the originating site.” Limitation of liability for network storage or linking users to online sites are also subject to compliance with notifications.

However, all forms of ISP limitations of liability are subject to several additional conditions (which Malaysia and New Zealand oppose):

http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/6996/125/

Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) The Council of Canadians

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is 12-nation (and counting) free trade and corporate rights deal that is being led by the United States but also includes Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. Thailand, The Philippines and South Korea have also expressed interest in joining the talks, which would eclipse the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in the ways democracy would be constrained in the interests of multinational corporations.

Of the 26 chapters currently being negotiated in the TPP, only two have to do with trade. The other 24 deal with issues as diverse as how a government regulates corporate activity, what Crown corporations can and cannot do, how long pharmaceutical patents or copyright terms should be, how the Internet is governed, the sharing of personal information across borders, banking and taxation rules, and when a company or investor should be compensated when environmental or public health policies interfere with profits.

The TPP is also considered a geopolitical weapon of the U.S. government, which is trying to isolate China in the Asia-Pacific region, and to block alternative, and more successful, forms of development than the “free trade” model has to offer. But the TPP is being resisted by people across all participating countries because of how it will lock-in a myopic type of corporate globalization that is the main cause of runaway climate change and which has done little to create good, sustainable jobs or reduce poverty worldwide. People working across borders fought and defeated the Free Trade Area of the Americas. Our goal is to make sure the TPP suffers the same fate.

http://www.canadians.org/tpp

What Canadians need to know about the TPP’s Internet Censorship Plan By Noushin Khushrushahi | November 15, 2013

After years of pushing for greater transparency around the ultra-secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), global citizens finally caught a break when Wikileaks released the full text of the TPP’s Internet censorship chapter on November 13, 2013.

The TPP is an extreme trade agreement being negotiated behind closed doors by Canada and 11 other countries. Until this latest leak, all we knew about the TPP was from previously leaked documents in February 2011 – and what we knew was not good. The 2011 leaked text showed that the TPP could end the open Internet as we know it by criminalizing our online activity, invading our privacy, and making our ability to access the Internet far more expensive.

We knew it was bad for the open Internet. We didn’t know it was this bad.

According to privacy expert Professor Michael Geist, Canada (with the support of a number of other countries) has taken a strong stand against extreme U.S. proposals around Internet Service Provider (ISP) liability. While Canada suggests instituting a general notification obligation for ISPs, the U.S. demands that ISPs institute notice-and-takedown regimes. What does this mean? If the U.S. has its way, it means:

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/openmediaca/2013/11/what-canadians-need-to-know-about-tpps-internet-censorship-plan

What startups need to know about TPP, the secret global trade agreement Eva Arevuo, Engine November 16, 2013 8:00 AM

In the name of “individual rights and free expression,” WikiLeaks this week released the draft text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement — an international trade agreement with the stated aim of liberalizing the economies of the Asia-Pacific region. Among other problems, this agreement may have an adverse impact on U.S. startups.

Negotiations over this trade agreement began in secret in December 2012 between Australia, Brunei, Chile, Canada, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, Japan, Vietnam, and the United States. Together, these nations are responsible for 40 percent of global production and one third of worldwide trade. Despite the secrecy, we know (from a previous leak) that discussions have covered intellectual property, competitive and State-owned enterprises, environmental policy, services and investment, and government procurement, among other issues.

http://venturebeat.com/2013/11/16/what-startups-need-to-know-about-tpp-the-secret-global-trade-agreement/

New Bill Targets Patent Trolls Stunting Economic Growth Mike McGeary Oct. 23, 2013 – Today, several members of the House Judiciary committee released the Innovation Act of 2013 as an attempt to curb the pernicious growth of the patent troll business model.

Entrepreneurs, young businesses, and emerging, high-growth technologies are powering what resurgence there is in the American economy. But these businesses are subject to an arcane, onerous system of patent regulation that leaves them vulnerable, and that vulnerability is abused by patent assertion entities and their allies to leverage that system against innovators. With this reality, we are faced with two options: a broken system, or the chance of a reformed system that champions innovation and growth.

At Engine, we completed groundbreaking research this year on technology entrepreneurship in America. Our findings highlight that these young companies create more and better jobs with higher wage premiums than any other industry and that they do so in a way that strengthens communities, creating 4.3 local jobs alongside their own. Moreover, it has become clear that these young, high-growth businesses have created all net new job growth since the time of Ronald Reagan.

Meanwhile, the patent troll racket is directly responsible for $29 billion per year in lost capital and investment. It is this lost capital that could otherwise be used to create the next great American companies that would rejuvenate the American economy.

http://engine.is/blog/posts/new-bill-targets-patent-trolls-stunting-economic-growth

Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) – Threat To National Sovereignty by Dr. Chandra Muzaffar – Editor’s Note: The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement represents the economic arm of the US pivot to the Asia-Pacific region, and threatens to undermine the sovereignty of participating countries. Washington lacks a fundamental economic vision, and as its influence in the world continues to wane, the TPP is an attempt to harness the growth and dynamism of South East Asia’s tiger cub economies as a counterweight to China’s influence in the region. The trade deal imposes familiar neoliberal policies written by and for the benefit of US multinational conglomerates. As the participating countries prepare to meet for trade negotiations in Malaysia later this month, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar lays out exactly what is at stake for countries who bend to US pressure and sign the TPP.

http://landdestroyer.blogspot.com/2013/07/trans-pacific-partnership-tpp-threat-to.html

Op-Ed: Leaked draft of TPP agreement provisions on intellectual property By Ken Hanly Nov 16, 2013

The draft sections of the Trans=Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement dealing with intellectual property rights has been leaked by Wikileaks. They show that the deal protects the rights of corporations while curtailing the rights of the public.

The Trans-Pacific Partnership has been under negotiation since 2010 and would expand the earlier agreement to many new countries:

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/362243

TPP: Videos

Wikileaks Exposes the TPP as a Capitulation to Corporate Interests https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRX1wDxdlko

Kevin Zeese: Obama administration’s Fast Track authority plan derailed by bipartisan outrage.

Published on Nov 15, 2013
TheRealNews [https://www.youtube.com/user/TheRealNews]

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRX1wDxdlko

TPP Exposed: WikiLeaks Publishes Secret Trade Text to Rewrite Copyright Laws, Limit Internet Freedom https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6OZyRQbQ2k

WikiLeaks has published the secret text to part of the biggest U.S. trade deal in history, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). For the past several years, the United States and 12 Pacific Rim nations have been negotiating behind closed doors on the sweeping agreement. A 95-page draft of a TPP chapter released by WikiLeaks on Wednesday details agreements relating to patents, copyright, trademarks and industrial design — showing their wide-reaching implications for internet services, civil liberties, publishing rights,and medicine accessibility. Critics say the deal could rewrite U.S. laws on intellectual property rights, product safety and environmental regulations, while backers say it will help create jobs and boost the economy. President Obama and U.S. trade representative Michael Froman reportedly wish to finalize the TPP by the end of the year and are pushing Congress to expedite legislation that grants the president something called “fast-track authority.” However, this week some 151 House Democrats and 23 Republicans wrote letters to the administration saying they are unwilling to give the president free reign to “diplomatically legislate.” We host a debate on the TPP between Bill Watson, a trade policy analyst at the Cato Institute, and Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch.

Published on Nov 14, 2013
democracynow [http://www.youtube.com/user/democracynow]

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e6OZyRQbQ2k

Trans-Pacific Partnership: Corporate Global Domination (Long Version) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pj_Wiq9J0LM

This video is a long version of the event that occurred on May 28, 2013, when a group of panelists and activists assembled at the All Souls Unitarian Universalist Church in New York City to learn about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and to organize opposition to it.

Published on Jun 24, 2013
TheEnvironmentTV [https://www.youtube.com/user/TheEnvironmentTV]

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pj_Wiq9J0LM

Anonymous : What is The TPP https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEO0faMuZoY

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (or TPP for short) is being negotiated in secret between more than 12 countries around the Pacific region. Find out why it poses a huge threat to your digital freedoms.

Published on Nov 11, 2013
Anonymous [https://www.youtube.com/user/ANONKILLS]

Information & Credit

For more information to find out how you can take action, visit: https://www.eff.org/issues/tpp

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEO0faMuZoY

Trans-Pacific Partnership overview via US Congressman Dennis Kucinich https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtBUL_rgG1k

"The negotiations over the multinational Trans-Pacific Partnership, or the TPP Free Trade Agreement, lack transparency. The U.S. Trade Representative denies members of Congress and the public access to the classified text of the agreement.

"This policy of secrecy undermines public trust and denies members of Congress the opportunity Congress has historically been afforded to provide input on trade deals. According to Public Citizen's Global Trade Watch, the U.S. Trade Representative has consulted with 'over 600 mostly corporate advisors on the context of the classified TPP text,' while continuing to deny access to policy makers whose constituencies will be greatly affected by the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

"From what has been leaked of the TPP, it is shaping up to be worse than NAFTA. The North American Free Trade Agreement's (NAFTA) legacy of deregulation, the outsourcing of American jobs, and the undermining of U.S. environmental and health laws is legendary."

"The devastating track record of Free Trade Agreements (FTA) thus far is clear, and recent reports confirm the fears of those of us who opposed the NAFTA-style FTAs with Korea, Colombia and Panama last year. Colombia continues to be the most dangerous place in the world for trade unionists. Our trade deficit with Korea in the auto sector has grown to nearly $8 billion, a 28% increase over the same period from last year.

"In June of this year, I joined over 100 Members of Congress in asking U.S. Trade Representative for more transparent negotiations and to provide Congress with the vital opportunity to provide input for the agreement. Our voices join thousands of people across the country and a broad range of civil society groups such as the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the American Medical Student Association and the AFL-CIO that are calling for increased transparency and accountability in the TPP negotiation process.

"When will the U.S. Trade Representative listen? Why is the process so secret? Shouldn't we know the details of the Trans-Pacific Partnership before the election?"

Published on Oct 18, 2012
DJKucinich [https://www.youtube.com/user/DJKucinich]
Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtBUL_rgG1k

Trans-Pacific Partnership Needs to Protect American Jobs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63INIb6YvYA

Published on Oct 25, 2013
Congresswoman Louise Slaughter [https://www.youtube.com/user/louiseslaughter]

On Friday, October 25, 2013 Louise spoke with Ed Shultz about the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the need to end the era of giveaway trade. Louise has been a vigorous opponent of failed trade agreements and opposed her own party in voting against NAFTA when it was proposed in Congress. She is the author of the Reciprocal Market Access Act which would fix our trade negotiation process and protect American manufacturers from flawed trade deals that favor foreign countries.

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=63INIb6YvYA

Japanese Movement Against TPP Growing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anhP_NzX5DY

Critics of the Trans-Pacific Partnership say it’s an attempt to impose an American system on Japan and would threaten Japanese public healthcare system

Published on May 6, 2013
TheRealNews [https://www.youtube.com/user/TheRealNews]

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anhP_NzX5DY

A Conversation on the Trans-Pacific Partnershiphttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFEttSxoSC0

Stratfor Analysts Karen Hooper and Matt Gertken discuss the strategy behind the United States’ latest push for a trans-Pacific free trade agreement, and the challenges it faces.
For more analysis, visit: http://www.Stratfor.com

Published on May 24, 2013
STRATFORvideo [https://www.youtube.com/user/STRATFORvideo]
Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kFEttSxoSC0

Fighting The Trans-Pacific Partnership – Nile Bowie on GRTV https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yk6VOJHGoM

The Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement is a proposed free trade bloc involving twelve Asia-Pacific countries, including the world’s first and third largest economies. As delegates prepare to descend on Kuala Lumpur for the next round of secretive negotiations, Malaysia-based journalist Nile Bowie joins us to discuss the proposed treaty and its ramifications. Find out more in this week’s GRTV Feature Interview.

Published on Jul 15, 2013
GlobalResearchTV [https://www.youtube.com/user/GlobalResearchTV]

Category: News & Politics
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yk6VOJHGoM

The TPPA will destroy NZ Industry Murray Horton CAFCA MR NEWS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYEVC08afDE

This is a must see for every country who is entering into free trade deals!
Murray Horton from the Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa CAFCA lays out how the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) will destroy New Zealand’s economy and undermine our sovereignty.

Published on Apr 18, 2011
Vincent Eastwood [https://www.youtube.com/user/MRNEWSguerillamedia]

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kYEVC08afDE

What Is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP)? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-GURmyY-Pgg

Learn more about corporate America’s latest power grab — the TPP — and sign the petition at www.citizenstrade.org.

Published on Mar 14, 2012
ORFTC [https://www.youtube.com/user/ORFTC]

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License: Standard YouTube License

Watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-GURmyY-Pgg

Expose The TPP
ExposeTheTPP [https://www.youtube.com/user/ExposeTheTPP]

What you don’t know WILL hurt you. So learn more about the Trans-Pacific Partnership at www.ExposeTheTPP.org.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUNRp_O96j5Q06v6XpnzIEJCFOS-ubIMQ

further reading: https://dumpharper.wordpress.com/the-issues/cdntrade/tpp/


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Another CFR Conversation with Stephen Harper

A Conversation with Stephen Harper

Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper discusses trade and the economy, current and future energy issues, and security concerns.

SPEAKER: Stephen Harper
PRESIDER: Robert E. Rubin

http://www.cfr.org/canada/conversation-stephen-harper/p30715

Published on May 17, 2013
Council on Foreign Relations

Category: Nonprofits & Activism
License” Standard YouTube License

Transcript: A Conversation with Stephen Harper
Speaker: Stephen Harper, Prime Minister, Canada
Author: Robert E. Rubin, Co-Chairman, Council on Foreign Relations
May 16, 2013ROBERT RUBIN: All righty. Welcome. I’m Bob Rubin, co-chairman of the council. And we welcome you here today. We are absolutely delighted to have with us our distinguished guest, the prime minister of Canada, Stephen Harper. I will not recite from his resume; as you know, it’s council practice to simply welcome our distinguished visitor. But it’s worth looking at that resume. It’s extremely impressive and this is an extremely accomplished prime minister.

Let me just make one personal observation. I had the good fortune to be at breakfast with the prime minister this morning. We discussed — or the group that was there discussed economic issues, we discussed the Mideast, about which he knows an enormous amount. And he is very, very thoughtful, as you will quickly find out.

So we again, Prime Minister, are just delighted to have you with us. Our program will be as follows: I’ll spend about, oh, the first half of the program posing a few questions to the prime minister and then we’ll open it up to all the participants. And then we will adjourn on time.

If you do ask a question, raise you hand. Somebody will come to you with a microphone. State who you are, your affiliation, and be very brief so we can get as many questions in as possible.

Let me start you off in this way, Prime Minister — as I mentioned at breakfast, I happen to have a very small investment account, so it kind of interests me — (laughter) — what do — what do you — and I think, you know, I do, because I think Canada has a very strong position. But as you look forward over the next five or 10 years, what do you think about when you think about risks, problems, concerns, issues that Canada needs to address?

PRIME MINISTER STEPHEN HARPER: Sure. Well, first of all, thank you for the kind introduction and thank you, everybody, for having me today. I’m delighted to be back here.

Bob, let me just say this, what I said this morning, you know, we can point to little things, there’s always things you want to see better in your economy. But the fundamentals of the Canadian economy are very strong. Our growth is slow, but it has been extremely steady — the best overall since the end of the recession in the G-7. We continue to create jobs. We have the lowest tax rates at the federal level we’ve had in 50 years. And our debt and deficit levels are lowest in the G-7 by a long way — by a long way.

RUBIN: Can you tell people what they are? I think —

HARPER: Well, at a federal level we’re now peaking at about 33 percent. So it’s a very, very manageable level.

I can point to little things, but all of the risks to Canada are really external. There were never in Canada any of the fundamental problems that led to the recession globally — the banking problems, the housing market problems, the sovereign debt problems. None of these things were present in Canada in any significant way.

And our recession came about entirely due to our external markets, our export markets and the effect of commodity prices. And these things remain our significant risks in the — in the near and medium term. What I have told Canadians repeatedly in the last few years is those risks are there, they’re going to continue to be with us. And our finance minister, Mr. Flaherty, will continue to dialogue with his partners around the world, our central bank will try and deal with those things.

What we have to do in Canada is, quite frankly, simply look past those things and ask ourselves what can we do to try and increase the growth potential of our economy over time going forward. And that’s why we are working on trade agreements, including completing the one we’re in — negotiating with the EU right now; why we’re keeping our taxes down, getting our budget balanced; why we’re making investments in long-term economic infrastructure and innovation; why we’re focusing — are trying to focus our training programs increasingly on economic and labor force needs; why we’re reorienting our very — I think very positive immigrations programs even more towards the labor force. We’re trying to do all the things we can to deal with the growth potential of the Canadian economy, and as I say, not that there are no risks in Canada, but the real significant risks are all external.

RUBIN: May I ask you a question, Prime Minister? My impression — I think this is right — is that with all the great strengths of Canada, productivity still has not increased at the rate that it has in some of the competitive countries — for example, ours.

HARPER: Yeah.

RUBIN: And what would you think, if that’s right — and I think it’s right — what would you think the reasons would be? And what can be done to address that?

HARPER: Yeah, it is — it is true. I don’t think we entirely know why it is true, but you know, we’re doing a couple things that are important. In terms of particularly our manufacturing sector, we’re doing things to encourage innovation and investment in that sector. We’ve had accelerated capital cost allowance write-downs for new machinery and equipment. We’ve eliminated all tariffs, incoming and outgoing, on manufactured goods. And we’re putting more money into — government money into the commercial side, commercialization side, of research and development.

These are all things on which we’re starting to see some improvements in productivity, particularly in that — I think that’s the really key place where it has to be done.

The other thing we’re doing more going forward is looking at — you know, given that we’re — like all big Western economies, we have large government, what can we do to improve productivity and efficiency in government. As we’re trying to balance our budget, rather than cutting services left, right and center, we’re trying to look at ways we can reduce back office overheads, we can find more efficiency through application of new technology, how we can improve our performance management system for our public servants, to make sure that we’re getting the highest levels of results.

So those are some of the things we’re trying to do on productivity, and I think I see some sign it’s starting to have some effect. But it’s something we’ll have to watch going forward.

RUBIN: You obviously are an enormous producer of energy — gas, oil, coal and so forth. How do the environmental versus the production of energy forces weigh out in Canada? You’ve got the gateway pipeline —

HARPER: Right.

RUBIN: — which I think now has run into some difficulty in British Columbia, if I remember correctly.

HARPER: Well, then the Northern Gateway is still — it’s still part of a regulatory review process. I — as I tell people repeatedly, we in Canada — you know, we have a market-driven energy system; the government does not fund or invest in particular energy products — projects, outside of the hydroelectric sector.

We have vigorous regulatory systems to look at the economic, environmental and other impacts of environmental — of energy projects.

I’ll repeat what I said this morning: to repeat kind of what you said, Bob, that, you know, whether it’s coal, hydroelectricity, uranium, natural gas, oil, you name it, Canada is one of the largest producers in the world, and in almost every case with some of the largest reserves in the world. So whatever the energy mix of the future, as I tell people, Canada will be a major provider.

Look, environmental challenges are real. They have to be dealt with. You know, in terms of the one that — probably one I do want to talk about today, the Keystone pipeline in particular —

RUBIN: (Chuckles.) Thought you might.

HARPER: — and the oil sands, let me just talk a little bit about the environmental side of that, because I know that’s something we’re going to be focused on.

Oil sands — first of all, one needs to put this in a global perspective. Less than one-tenth of 1 percent of global emissions are in the oil sands. And so it — it’s, you know, almost nothing globally.

Now obviously it’s a significant part of the — of our own pressures in terms of our targets, the targets we share — we share a Copenhagen target with the United States. We have the same target and obviously constraining emissions there in the oil sands is going to be important.

We’ve had a 25 percent reduction over the past decade or so in emissions intensity out of the oil sands — 25 percent down.

The province of Alberta already has a technology fund, a regulatory approach in the oil sands that is going to lead to even more investments in technology that will continue to reduce our emissions. So look, truth of the matter is heavy oils out of the oil sands — yes, there still are emissions issues, but no — no more so than heavy crudes in other parts of the world, including Venezuela. And I don’t have to tell you there are probably reasons beyond just emissions why you would want to have your oil from Canada rather than from Venezuela.

You know, this project — well, if I can just take a second, four things. I talked about the environment. You know, on the economic side, 40,000 jobs in this country alone over the life of the project — I don’t think, given the growth and job record in North America, we can afford to turn down — turn up our nose at that. Energy security — this project will bring in enough oil to reduce American offshore dependence by 40 percent. This is an enormous benefit to the United States in terms of long-term energy security. And finally, of course, I think when you weigh all these factors, including the environmental factors, it explains why there is such overwhelming public support for this pipeline in the United States and why the — in the — particularly in the regions affected, there’s such broad bipartisan support.

So I think this absolutely needs to go ahead, but you can rest assured that making our emissions targets, including in the oil sands sector, is an important objective of the government of Canada.

RUBIN: This may be an unfair question. You don’t have to respond to it. But you’ve obviously been touched with the — or involved with the — our government quite a bit on this subject. What would your prognosis be for approval? You can not respond to that, and you can say that — (laughter) — you can say it’s complicated — (inaudible) —

HARPER: (Inaudible) — ask Ambassador Jacobson that question. (Laughter.) Look —

RUBIN: I don’t think he wants to take personal responsibility for this. (Laughter.)

HARPER: I think — you know, as I say, I think all the facts, including the recent — you know, recent State Department had a pretty thorough analysis of this, including the environmental impact. And the immediate — the only real immediate environmental issue here is that we want to increase the flow of oil from Canada via pipeline or via rail. If we don’t do the pipeline, more and more is going to be coming in via rail, which is far more environmentally challenging in terms of emissions and risks and all kinds of other things than building a proper pipeline. I think all the facts are overwhelmingly on the side of approval of this, but there is a process in the United States. As I’m told by those who know, the process is subject, as in everything in this country, to a massive potential litigation on either side, so the — I know the administration will do a thorough analysis before arriving at the right decision.

RUBIN: Let me go back to my first question. (Laughter.) That was what — that’s what I thought you were going to say. Let me go back to the first question again. It really — I’ve spent a fair bit of time on this. It’s hard to see internally — for the external difference — internally, where Canada could go wrong. Yet every economy has its risks. So if you were to identify the 1 percent risk that would worry you, what would it be?

HARPER: Well, as I say, they are — they are external. That’s what keeps me up at night. We’ve had — I think there’s been some comment on it here. We have had, as you know, growth of household debt in Canada. I think it’s — it — the assets behind it still speak to the fact that it’s well-supported. The financial institutions lending are the most solid in the world. But household debt has risen. We’ve taken some important steps in Canada to cool that trend through changing some mortgage rules, which is having a noticeable impact. You know, there’s always risks you can’t predict in this world. There are security risks. There are terrorist attacks. As you know, we just have been working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation working to make arrests on a particular incident we had not long after the Boston bombings. So there’s political risks. There’s always the risk of — there’s always the risk of people picking the wrong government, but my primary job is to make sure that doesn’t happen. (Laughter.)

RUBIN: Well, since you raise that, I wasn’t going to. But you do have — (laughter) — you have to have an election within the next 2 1/2 years sometime.

HARPER: Yeah, actually, we have a date set for October 25th.

RUBIN: Oh, you do? OK, I didn’t realize that. What will the issues in that election likely be?

HARPER: (Chuckles.) You know, I — look, I tell — in fairness, Bob, I tell people that my focus right now is the economy. And I am not — you know, I’m trying to — trying to stay out of campaign mode as long as I can. The — that’s one of the differences between our system and your system. The campaign mode is not perpetual in Canada, although when we had minority governments, it sometimes seemed that way. I believe that in the foreseeable future, to most people, the economy, the future of jobs and opportunities for themselves and for their children — those will continue to be the major issues. I think they’ll be the major issues for some time to come.

I think — look, I think, in the developed world, we’re going to have some ongoing challenges, particularly in Europe, and, for that matter, U.S. fiscal situation is likely to remain challenging for a while. But I think we’re at a crossroads as I think we all recognize there is a — there really is a shift, an unprecedented shift of power and wealth away from the Western world.

And in many ways, that’s a good thing, because we’re seeing hundreds of millions of people come out of poverty who never had opportunity before, and it’s something we want to see continue. But at the same time, if these trends continue, they will be a real threat to our standards of living. And what we keep telling Canadians, and I think all Western governments need to tell their people, is we can maintain and increase our standard of living and opportunity for our children and grandchildren, but we have to govern ourselves responsibly, we have to live within our means, and we have to not develop a mentality that somehow, the wealth we have today is a right, and it is simply going to be taken as a given. It’s going to be earned in a very competitive world. We’re prepared as government to make the investments and decisions necessary to grab that future. And I think we have to keep working with our people to make sure they understand those challenges, not just in their communities but obviously business leaders as well.

RUBIN: Look, I think that’s a very good statement of the challenge that faces all of us. Would you like to comment is another question you might want to be diplomatic about. (Chuckles.) As you look south — you obviously have a very strong economic relation with our country — what is — how does it strike you that we’re doing —

HARPER: Well —

RUBIN: — in the context of the framework you just set out?

HARPER: Look, we’ve made — you know, Canadians are very — you know, very proud of the fact that the country has performed so well over the past seven or eight years. And, you know, for the first time in a very long time, maybe ever, we now have numbers on standard of living that are at or exceed the numbers of the United States as a consequence of some of the trends of the last few years. And Canadians always — I tell people from around the world, Canadians always compare themselves to the Americans because you’re our only real neighbor, and it’s the only real comparison that matters to us. And we’re proud of that comparison.

But we also know that for our country to realize its potential, the United States has to do better. I’m encouraged by growth signs I see in the United States. As I mentioned here earlier today, I have enormous — first, I’m an enormous admirer of this country. And in spite of the fact I value the differences we have as Canadians, I’m an enormous admirer of this country, and I have enormous faith in the ability of the American people and particularly the American business community to always find opportunity, always seize it and always create a better future. That’s been the history of this country. I think it requires a hell of a lot of effort by everybody in Washington to make that not true. (Laughter.) And I just — I just don’t think they can sustain that kind of effort indefinitely, so — (laughter) —

RUBIN: Boy. Well, that’s a — (chuckles) — that, Prime Minister, is very well said. I hope that — (inaudible) — I hope that your bet on their inability to maintain that indefinitely has turned out to be right. (Laughter.)

Before we turn to everybody else, let me ask you, I had not realized, actually, until you were coming here just how deeply you’ve been involved with the Mideast and how constructively, from our point of view, at least. Why don’t you tell people a little bit about your involvement, how much you’ve been involved and what you’ve done and what your views are, including in — with respect to your views, if I may, on Israel, Syria and Egypt?

HARPER: Sure.

Well, look. I think like everybody we’re very concerned about what’s happening in the Mideast. I was criticized somewhat at home for maybe not as enthusiastically embracing the Arab Spring as some, not because I didn’t see positive there, but because I also saw enormous risks. And in some countries like Egypt, I think we’re starting to see the implications of maybe unrealistic expectations, both foreign and often on behalf of the populations themselves.

We were very supportive of our allies on the Libya mission. In fact, it was a Canadian commander, actually, in charge of that mission, with, obviously, our American, British and French and other allies, a mission I think, notwithstanding the problems we see today, was still worthwhile for all kinds of reasons.

Look, the one that’s on everybody’s mind is Syria. And I will just say this: You know, all joking aside about Washington, I — you know, we’ve — I have a really good relationship with the president. And, you know, obviously, think within the constraints of the American system, he’s doing what he can do on all kinds of issues. On Syria, I see a lot of criticism about inaction. I look at Syria over the past couple years, and I would urge the president and everybody else extraordinary caution in jumping into this situation. This is a terrible regime. Canada has some of the toughest sanctions in the world against the Assad regime. We believe, as everybody believes, that he should step down and there should be a transition.

But we should not fool ourselves about what is happening in Syria. The overwhelming complexion of the events in Syria is that of a sectarian conflict on both sides, with brutality and extremism on both sides. And to just start talking about, you know, as some do, arming unnamed people whose objectives — whose identities we don’t know and whose objectives we do not understand I think is — I think is extremely risky. So I think we are best to try and continue to work — we’re making — doing humanitarian aid, as I know the United States is. Best that we keep doing that nonlethal aid, that we assist the neighboring countries, particularly Jordan, who are threatened by this and that we continue to try and do what we can diplomatically, notwithstanding the obstruction of some at the United Nations, that we continue to do what we can diplomatically to try and see if we can’t bring the sides together and lead to a more peaceful transition. I think those are still the best options. Even if they don’t appear attainable, none of the other options, to me, are very pleasant.

I think it is also important — and I’ll use this opportunity to say it again, as I think many of you know, our government has been very well known for its strong support of the state of Israel. I think there is nothing more short sighted in Western capitals, in our time, than the softening support we have seen for Israel around the globe. This is the one strong, stable, democratic, Western ally that we have in this part of the world, and the worst possible thing we could do in the long term for any of our governments is to be anything less than fully supportive of Israel. As long as I’m prime minister, this government will remain very supportive, you know, and — of that country in what is a very challenging neighborhood.

RUBIN: As soon as you said — we’ll turn to everybody else, but now you lead me to a follow-up question, if I may. One would think that, in some respects, they have a very difficult situation right now. If you were Israel, how would you navigate in this — in this water?

HARPER: (Chuckles.)

RUBIN: And you may also — on that one our may find some equal answer, like saying it’s complex.

HARPER: Yeah, you know, it’s so hard. I speak frequently with Prime Minister Netanyahu, and it’s so hard for me to put myself in that kind of environment. As president — or Prime Minister Netanyahu always says to me, he says, I have the worst neighborhood in the world and you have the best neighborhood in the world, because you know where I am and you know all the turmoil around me. And he says, you have three oceans — you have oceans on three sides and the United States on the other. There is no possible better arrangement any country could ask for — (laughter) — in the entire world, and I think he’s absolutely right on that.

You know, obviously first and foremost — first and foremost, Israel has to be preoccupied with its own security, given all the risks — the immediate risks of — in the immediate neighborhood and the farther off but very real risks of places like Iran and its nuclear weapons ambitions, which I consider to be the biggest single threat to the globe today.

At the same time, obviously we encourage Israel to try and work with its neighbors to establish workable relationships, as it has with a couple. And we encourage Israelis and Palestinians to return to the peace table and try and make some progress there. But we should — I really think we should back away from a mythology that there is some kind of magic bullet in Palestinian-Israeli talks that would affect the wider region. The wider region is in turmoil for reasons that go way beyond the Palestinian question or, for that matter, the existence of Israel.

RUBIN: Prime Minister, thank you.

Now we will take questions from anybody who would like to begin the process of asking questions.

Yes, ma’am. Just state who you are and what your affiliation is.

QUESTIONER: Hello. Peggy Hicks with Human Rights Watch. Prime Minister, your government has looked at the issue of violence and murders against indigenous women, and it has been supportive of a parliamentary — special parliamentary committee that’s been set up but so far hasn’t been willing to take up the recommendation of a national commission of inquiry to address that very desperate problem, with hundreds of women missing or dead. This featured prominently in Canada’s UPR, Universal Periodic Review, in Geneva, and now some provinces and territories have come out in support of National Commission of Inquiry. Is it time for the government to support it as well?

HARPER: Yeah, I remain very skeptical. You know, I, first of all, tend to remain skeptical of commissions of inquiry generally. Not to say they never work or never produce good recommendations, but my experience has been, they almost always run way over time, way over budget and often, the recommendations prove to be of limited utility.

This issue has been studied; the government itself — the federal government itself — it’s been studied in several different venues — the federal government itself provided funding or multi-years of study within various branches of our government. We do really think it is time to pass to action.

We have been funding increasing elements — a number of elements in the justice system to increase the efficacy of both prevention programs as well as investigate techniques on behalf of the police. You know, we’re talking about a large number of cases, many of which bear no resemblance to each other whatsoever. And a lot of it is just a matter of getting — getting better processes to both prevent and investigate these kinds of disturbances.

But I think the other thing, more broadly, that is required — and something we have been battling in parliament for some years — is to really enhance the status of women in aboriginal communities. For instance, something we have been trying to pass for some years, when we were a minority, without success, and now advancing — we’re a majority is matrimonial property rights on reserve — women on Canadian reserves, for various reasons — historical reasons — don’t enjoy the same kinds of property and other rights that women off reserves enjoy.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission was, for all intents and purposes — its authorities were not applied on reserves until a couple of years ago when this government managed to amend legislation. So I think there are practical things besides, obviously, enhancing the efficacy of police work. There are things we have to do to increase and raise the status of women in aboriginal communities. And this has been a bit of a pitched battle, because there are forces within aboriginal communities and outside who have been resisting those kinds of changes.

RUBIN: Yes, sir.

QUESTIONER: Ralph Bertrands (ph), New York University. Prime Minister, in recent times, ethnic problems around the world have risen — ethnic separatism has risen. But in Canada, it seems to have declined. Why is that so, and what are the mechanisms the Canadian government has used in this process, and are there any lessons that the rest of the world can learn from this?

RUBIN: That’s a good question.

HARPER: You know, broadly — I won’t comment at great length on the issue of Quebec separatism. As you know, we have a separatist government in Quebec right now, primarily because it was the principal opposition, and Quebecers wanted to change the government, but in fact, support for their actual option of separation is at historic lows.

Look, I think one of the things we’re very proud of in Canada is the general approach we’ve had to diversity. It obviously has origins in the country, because almost from the outset, we’ve had two national languages. We’ve had a policy of multiculturalism for some years. The approach we have used in Canada that I think has been very effective — it’s not perfect — is that we have always taken the view that when people are prepared — people who have lived millennia in other nations pull up their roots and come to Canada, that this is a very dramatic decision they are taking.

And in wanting to do that, we should be very clear that in almost every case, they really want to become Canadians. And so as much as we want and expect them to integrate, we also view that it is our role as the country they’re coming to to make that integration process easier and to accept that when immigrants and when people of different cultures come to Canada, they will not only change to suit the country, but the country will, in some — in some measure, also evolve to reflect them.

And so I think, in understanding that this is a two-way street and that we accept diversity as a positive, this is a deeply-rooted, across the political spectrum in Canada. I think it’s been something that’s served us very well. And I say, notwithstanding problems that arise from time to time, I think it’s fair to say that there’s probably no country in the world with greater cultural diversity, but also greater cultural harmony than Canada, simultaneously.

RUBIN: In that context, Prime Minister, do you have an illegal immigrant problem in Canada of any dimension?

HARPER: We have — we certainly have illegal immigrants in Canada, but nothing like the problem in the United States. Our problems in Canada have tended to be more problems of people coming and making bogus claims in what is a very generous refugee system, as opposed to mass migration from across the border. So we certainly have illegal immigration, but it is — it would be a fragment of the phenomenon in the United States.

QUESTIONER: Mr. Prime Minister, Gordon Giffin, a lawyer from Atlanta, Georgia, proud graduate of Richview Collegiate Institute.

HARPER: My high school, same high school. (Laughter.)

QUESTIONER: And a former ambassador to Canada. Welcome, sir.

I hope I can formulate this question where it is coherent. 1988, Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement; 1994, NAFTA. Almost 20 years later, some significant, I’ll call them incremental initiatives, largely led by the two gentlemen sitting in front of me here, to improve how we work at the border together. But no big moves to try and make a difference in North America to make us more efficient economically. I’m not talking about in any way political integration or even currency integration, nothing like that.

But I even look at the Keystone debate right as evidence of the issue. The only reason we’re having this debate is because of an anachronistic provision in our law that relates to a permit to take infrastructure across the 49th parallel. Why we need that in North America, I’m not sure, when all of the jurisdictions along the route get to approve it or not under their own state laws.

So my — really, my question is, is there a chance of a much bigger initiative between our two countries at some point, to break down the anachronistic rules that impede economic efficiencies in North America, some of which have been done in Europe? I’m not talking about creating an EU with a large governance or anything, but the economic efficiencies.

Last thing I’ll say, when I was in Canada working on things like this, I found the impediment to that to be an insecurity in Canada about dealing with the United States, that we were somehow going to assimilate Canada. I don’t see that anymore. I think Canada’s much more self-confident in dealing with the United States and the world. So if that’s the case, is there a chance at doing a bigger deal going forward?

HARPER: Well, Gordon, let me just begin by just repeating — I know you’re familiar with it — some of the things we are doing, because I think we do have some significant initiative going forward.

We have the — what we call the Beyond the Border Initiative where we are attempting through a series of individual initiatives and investments and closer cooperation between border authorities, to make things more seamless at the border and to push a lot of — you know, inspections out around the perimeter of North America to try and arrange our affairs so that, as we say things, are — things are — you know, may enter twice, but are inspected only once. And we’re doing some of those things.

We also have a parallel initiative called the Regulatory Cooperation Council, where we’ve identified 29 areas to create greater consistency and harmonization of regulations and more importantly, in my judgment, especially for our side, is to find ways in those areas where we will prevent regulatory — unnecessary regulatory difference and duplication going forward, where we try and identify some of those things in advance, try and change some of the processes.

And I should mention one very specific project of international cooperation, which is the president just issued a permit for the Detroit River International Crossing, which this is financed largely by Canada, but this will be — this is a huge piece of infrastructure in what is — and we often forget the size of this relationship — what is the largest single trade corridor in the entire world, the Detroit-Windsor trade corridor.

So we have some important initiatives going forward. Could they lead to something systemically more integrated? Look, I think on our side, they could. I think on our side, they could. I agree with your assessment. I think the view — we had a watershed election in 1988 over the free trade agreement with the United States, and the opponents argued that whether economic integration with the United States — greater economic integration and trade would lead to wealth or not, it would cause Canada to lose its political independence and identity.

What we’ve seen is it has led to vast increases in cross-border trade without any such loss of political independence or identity. In fact, this past year, as you know, we’ve been celebrating the War of — the War of 1812, which —

RUBIN: I know. (Chuckles.)

HARPER: — permanently established this — (laughter) — this independence and separate identity. So I think that — there will always be opponents in Canada, but I think that is a real minority view now.

I think the resistance to this kind of thing’s far more in the United States than in Canada, for reasons that — and maybe, Bob and others, for reasons you would better fathom than me.

Some of it’s post-9/11 security concerns, but I’ve never seen — the United States in the past decade is — the sensitivity here about sovereignty and the negative assessments I often read of NAFTA — completely counterfactual assessments of NAFTA — I think, are the real barriers. I think the real barrier to making some of these arrangements broader and more systemic in terms of the integration are actually on this side of the border.

RUBIN: (Chuckles.)

HARPER: So I leave that to you guys to work out.

RUBIN: To the best my knowledge, Prime Minister, there’s never been a serious study of NAFTA that has shown it not to have been positive, but it lives in the politics of the United States in a very powerful way, because I think it symbolizes a lot of other issues that people are concerned about. That would be my impression, anyway.

HARPER: That’s — it — I don’t think there’s any evidence that it’s been anything but positive. And it’s one of these things — you get this sometime in politics — you get odd things where nobody would repeal it, yet nobody will admit it works.

RUBIN: (Chuckles.)

HARPER: And I don’t know why that is. In Canada I say the — there were many people opposed. It was a very close election, 50-50, Canadians’ original support, on the Canada-U.S. trade arrangement. Any political party that advocates backing away from this trade relationship or from NAFTA would never a general election in Canada, would never be a serious contender.

So that was a watershed, and people understand that this trade is necessary, essential and beneficial.

RUBIN: We’ll go back again. Right there. Yeah.

QUESTIONER: Stephen Blank, Fulbright professor, University of Ottawa. Back to risk. Three factoids: Canada’s increasingly a commodity-driven economy now. We see a decline of Canadian manufacturing competitiveness. And the trick — Canadian dollar trades about 10 to 15 cents higher than we always thought was appropriate. Do these pieces connect with each other? And is this a risk?

HARPER: I wouldn’t want to say they necessarily connect with each other.

We talked earlier today about commodity prices. I’m not sure I agree that we’re more commodity-dependent than ever. In fact, I think what distinguishes us from some countries like Australia is we’re actually less commodity-dependent.

But look, commodities are important. My own view is that commodity prices are likely over any significant period of time to track the general level of global economic activity. Obviously if there’s — if we were to see a recession or vast slowdown in the emerging economy, that would have a real impact on Canada through commodity prices, but it would have a real impact on everybody, whether you were commodity-dependent or not.

So I — you know, as I said earlier, I think — I think the fact that Canada actually is an advanced economy with a commodity side is actually one of our strengths. The fact that we have both traditional and nontraditional industries distinguishes us from some other developed countries where the kinds of problems you see in manufacturing and elsewhere are much more fatal in the long term.

We do need — as I said earlier, we do need to do more to make our secondary manufacturing sectors more competitive, more effective. We are working with the manufacturing sector through a series of sectoral initiatives as well as general tax policies to make that happen. I think those sectors are very supportive of what we’re doing in Canada to make that happen.

And on the research side, as you know, we have been making significant changes to try and make sure the vast — as we — you know, we are a very big funder of public R&D in Canada — to make that connect better with private R&D and to have better results on commercialization.

So look, those things are all — we can point at all kinds of things in Canada where things are not ideal or where there are weaknesses. And they’re all true. We have strengths and we have weaknesses. I don’t think any of these things individually would say that Canada, in isolation, is suddenly going to have a major economic problem. They’re all weaknesses we would have that — on which we would be susceptible, if there were a continued general global economic lowing. So I think our risks primarily (really ?) are external.

RUBIN: Over here.

QUESTIONER: Thank you, Mr. Prime Minister. Daniel Arbess, Parella Weinberg Partners. I wanted to take the opportunity to ask about universal health care. You know, I was born and grew up in Montreal and had the experience of living with universal health care as an adolescent, and my family did. It provided full access to health care, but it always — it wasn’t always to the highest-quality health care and to the most accessible when you needed it. As you know, the United States is moving in this direction. And getting universal health care right is probably the most important economic imperative. I’m sure Bob Rubin would probably agree with that assessment. Being able to create a universal health care system in this country where costs will be managed but so will the quality and accessibility of service balanced against that is critically important as the demographic advances here. So I wondered whether you could illuminate lessons in the Canadian experience with universal health care that would be applicable to our experience here?

HARPER: You know, in all fairness, probably not. (Laughter.) And the reason — the reason I say that is my experience with the health care system is similar to yours, and that — as you know, in Canada, the federal government doesn’t run the health care system. We provide some significant funding through transfer payments to the provinces, but we actually have very little to do with actually running a health care system. And I don’t proclaim any particular expertise in running a health care system.

I would agree with your assessment that we have a system of — a system of universal access. I would actually say that I think, in my own experience, the quality of care is actually quite high. Timeliness is sometimes an issue and becoming more of an issue as we face some of the demographic pressures on that system. And sometimes a system that’s publicly dominated innovation is also — may also be a bit more of a challenge in some areas.

But look, as you know, the fact of the matter is, Canadians across the political spectrum, including our party, we are very supportive of the fundamental premise of the Canadian health care system, which is that when somebody is sick and needs medical care, their ability to pay should not be a factor in them being able to access medical care. And that is a principle that Canadians believe in and, I know, one that remains a matter of some debate in the United States.

I would also made the following observations — when I say that I can’t give you an easy answer — I’d make this observation. In spite of the differences between Canadian and American health care and the health care systems in many other Western countries, it seems to me that health care systems around the world, regardless of how they’re structured, seem to have a lot of the same problems, the more I actually look at them.

And a lot of the reason for the problem is actually a positive thing. It is that with the — with the great strides we’ve made in both the professions, professional training, and especially technology and drugs, that there is just more and more and more we can do to improve people’s lives and to keep them living longer. But these things all come with price tags and, in some cases, with enormous price tags.

And the fact of the matter is it is very difficult for systems to assess, however they assess it, where you’re going to put these resources. Resources are never unlimited. And the demands and the ability to treat in many cases are virtually unlimited. And so decisions have to be made, and however those decisions are made, whether they’re through queuing or through pricing or whatever they are, are very difficult decisions. And I just think those are challenges.

And they’re going to be compounded, as we all know, because of the demographics in Western countries, where the population’s aging, people will need more health care, and more health care professionals themselves are aging, there will be less and less practitioners. So those are going to be some of the common challenges.

In our country, previous federal governments — well, not running a health care system — made a point — our ambassador was a former premier — they made a point of periodically picking fights with the provinces over health care to demonstrate that somehow we were going to be great defenders of the system. I think that was an entirely negative dynamic. The approach we now take is we try to work with the provinces to assist them in tackling what are very real challenges going forward.

RUBIN: Prime Minister, if a province decided they didn’t want to have a single-payer system, would they be in a position where they could move away from that?

HARPER: They — technically yes, but they would not be receiving significant transfer payments from the federal government if they did that. And in fairness, there is no political appetite that I’m aware of in any province in any segment of — significant segment of political opinion to do that.

RUBIN: The gentleman over there. Yeah, that’s it.

QUESTIONER: My name is Andrew Gumlock (sp) from — (inaudible). You’ve had some recent bruising battles on economic nationalism. In the fertilizer sector you chose not to allow foreign investors in. In two recent energy deals, you debated it a lot but you ultimately allowed them in, ring-fenced some assets.

How do you see this playing out in the short term with the election? But more broadly, and perhaps more importantly, how do you see Canada attracting in the surplus countries into very capital-intensive industries? Frankly, they need capital well in excess of the savings of Canada.

HARPER: Yes, that’s true. We need — we need foreign investment and, at the same time, you should be under illusion that we want foreign investment in Canada. And in fact, although we screen all major foreign investments, only twice in our history have we actually rejected foreign investments.

I just want to talk briefly about the two issues you raised. The one where we did not allow the investment, this was a case of the potash industry, where currently it’s a Canadian/American company, and Canada is a dominate producer. And through a Canadian/American organization, it’s headquartered — or, you know, partly headquartered in Canada.

Canada has significant market power in that industry. In one single transaction, what was going to occur was that that significant market power as going to shift out of the country and towards a foreign, private investor. Our judgement was that, because we do screen foreign investments, that that simply was not in the long-term interests of the Canadian economy. I’d say that was fairly unique circumstances.

The second case you raise was our decision to allow certain state-owned investments — one by a Chinese state-owned corporation, another by a Malaysian state-owned corporation — into the energy sector. And we allowed those after considerable deliberation.

And while we allowed those, we were very clear going forward that in areas of the economy — like, for instance, the oil sands — where we see now a significant risk that if we did not restrict foreign ownership that we would have in — essentially have that sector be nationalized by some other state-owned enterprise.

Our view is that is not the direction we want for the Canadian economy. We want to have foreign investment. This government — in fact, it’s conservative governments in our country, like mine, who have opened up the economy for foreign investment and have privatized crown corporations. We did not privatize state corporations in order to see other governments nationalize our industry.

So while some foreign state-owned investment is desirable, we would not want it at a level at any critical part of the economy where essentially we began to put that sector of the economy under a foreign state management system, rather than having it essentially run by commercial forces. So as they say, it’s a matter of level and degree. And we’ll deal with that going forward.

The risk Canada actually has, given the attractiveness — we’re now rated — I forget — was it Forbes who said now Canada’s in the best place in the world to make an investment. We get that kind of rating elsewhere. Given the relative smallness of the Canadian economy and the relative size of some potential investors, I do think that if we don’t — if we don’t have this concern in mind, we could see our economy morph in a way we don’t intend.

And as I say, it’s not about foreign or domestic. It’s about the nature of state-owned enterprises versus genuinely commercial operations. And that’s the thing we’re keeping an eye on.

RUBIN: Yes, sir.

QUESTIONER: Jeff Laurenti with The Century Foundation.

Mr. Prime Minister, the gradual melting back of the ice cap over the Arctic Ocean, attributed usually to global warming, raises two issues, as you now have long, frozen territorial claims suddenly heating up as well. And I wonder if you might elucidate for us, first, on the mega-issue of global warming, on which Canada has taken a somewhat more nuanced stand — walking back from Kyoto — whether — for Canadians, perhaps the prospect of having a climate more like New Jersey’s is so appealing that, you know, it doesn’t seem to be urgent. So where do you see the global climate change issue going on the mega level?

And then, on the Arctic territorial claims question, what are the major claims and dispute that affect Canada, and do you see that as resolved by the six countries adjacent to the ocean relative to their bargaining power with each other, or under broader principles of international law like the Law of the Sea? What’s the interplay between those?

HARPER: First of all, on the issue of climate change — our government’s position from the outset is that we need a mandatory international protocol that includes all significant emitters, and that if we do not get that, we will not be able to control global emissions. Part of the reason our government was not supportive of the Kyoto protocol is it controlled one-third of global emissions and a shrinking proportion of global emissions. Even if the Kyoto protocol had — every country in it had realized their targets, which, of course, most weren’t — they would have had no impact whatsoever on the growth of global emissions.

So we need — we need some of the big emitters outside the developed world — not just the United States — China and others — to be part of a — of a global system. And I do believe a couple of things going forward if we’re going to make that global system effective. It’s not just a matter of setting targets. We actually have to have ways of reaching them. You know, many countries have tried simply setting a target as a way of demonstrating that they’re going to achieve something. We need a couple of things.

I think, first and foremost, we do need technological change. I am convinced that over time, we are not going to effectively tackle emissions unless we develop the technology — lower emission technology in energy and other sectors. And that is the thing that will allow us to square economic growth with emissions reduction and environmental protection. And I’m convinced that if we cannot square those two things, we’re not going to make progress globally.

And I don’t just say that about developed countries like ours, where people are still saying they need jobs as a consequence of the recession, but certainly, in the developing world, we’re not going to simply be able to put caps on economic growth as a way of achieving environmental targets. So that’s the framework we’re approaching it from, but look, there’s a lot of — there’s a lot of work to be done. There is still not — the reality is, there is still not an acceptance in many countries of the need for mandatory targets at all.

On the — on the issue of territorial claims, you know, with one — with one small exception, from our standpoint — with one small exception, there really aren’t significant land and territorial claims. There are some disputes, including with your country, on some offshore claims. We have some with the United States on the Beaufort Sea, we obviously have an ongoing dispute about the international status of the Northwest Passage; we have some dispute in the Lincoln Sea area with Denmark.

I think these are things that can be resolved bilaterally. We are obviously, at the same time, big supporters of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and the process that’s going on there to deal with the — you know, the much farther offshore. And we will continue to support those international efforts. But I actually think the immediate territorial disputes, if they are to be resolved at all, can be resolved or managed bilaterally.

RUBIN: We have time for half a question more — (laughter) — and I’m going to — I’m going to take the liberty, if I may, of asking the question, because it relates to the question just answered. How do — can you see any way that the international community is actually going to effectively reach some kind of way of dealing with global climate change before it becomes a crisis that forces action? And in that context, is the G-20 an effective vehicle for dealing with transnational issues?

HARPER: Boy, that’s a big question.

RUBIN: Well, I — it’s a half a question, if you have a half an answer.

HARPER: Yeah. Well, look, I think the answer to the first question is yes. I think it’s going to be difficult. I think that — I think that most countries understand not just the question of climate change is serious, but understand that the price of having no effective environmental framework is already causing significant impacts and will cause greater impacts in the future.

I think even with marginal progresses in standard of living in places like China and India, there will be overwhelming public demand for environmental improvement in those countries. You know, it’s incomprehensible to me, when I look at the growth of China and India and I see the kind of environmental challenges that exist today, how those challenges could be tolerable if they became five or 10 times as bad. So I do think everybody will — will come to the realization, whether it’s on climate change or these broader economic problems of pollution and other such matters, that these things do have to be tackled.

I — I really do think that we’ll — we’ll get farther on these things if we take serious approaches. And serious approaches, Bob, means that we admit that not just they are big challenges, but they are also difficult ones. It is not a matter of just getting on a street corner and yelling and that will somehow lead to a solution. These are real challenges that — where environmental needs intersect and often appear to be at cross-purposes with economic and social development. And unless we realize that, take those things seriously, we’re going to keep talking around the real issues. So I think if we admit they’re real problems with real, difficult solutions and real, difficult choices that have to be made, that everybody has to contribute to, then I think we’ll make progress.

And I do think as time wears on and as we’ve had, you know, failures as we have through Kyoto and failures at some of these international conferences, I do think it will increasingly dawn on actors that we’ll just keep failing unless we actually get together and realize this is a — these are issues that — that don’t have simple, quick answers.

That was the first. What was the —

RUBIN: Oh, I’m just curious whether you think the G-20 is an effective mechanism for —

HARPER: Well, look, I don’t know. I — you know, I don’t — I wish I could tell you yes to that one. The G-20 was extraordinarily effective when President Bush first convened it in late 2008. It was extraordinarily effective at that meeting, at the subsequent ones in London and Pittsburgh, at arriving at a consensus on a series of issues that had to be addressed. And you know, we did a global stimulus. We worked for — we all worked together on — we shared, in fact, the panel on working together in more effective financial regulation. There’s been another — a number of other agreements.

What my observation would be, that going forward — when we all faced exactly the same problem, which was a collapse in economic activity, it — it — it sure led much more quickly to a consensus on what to do. Now that countries find themselves — you know, we talk about two three — two-speed, three-speed developed world, emerging economies on a different trajectory. As the situations and needs of these different countries diverge, getting consensus on these issues is proving to be more and more difficult. I don’t know whether it will be — whether it will be as effective going forward as it needs to be.

I do know this, that I think it’s the only mechanism at our disposal. I don’t think you’d want more than 20 players in the room. Unfortunately, the G-20 tends to mean, in practice, G-20 — something like G-35. But with 20 to 30 to 35 people in the room, I think you’re squeezing the — the bounds of effectiveness anyway, and — and there is nothing else that I see as a plausible substitute, other than the major sovereign players getting together and trying to — to work through some global needs.

What — what we lack — I would say often the real crucial problem is this. It’s — it’s not that — it’s not that — just that we have divergent paths and — and different situations. It’s that there is still often in these discussions a failure of many people around the table to fully grasp the holistic nature of the approach we need to take.

And look, we — Canada, like everyone else, we defend our national interests and our national perspective. But given that we are part of a global economy, effective — for lack of a better words, effective global governance through the G-20 — and that’s the closest thing we got — is only going to work if a lot of people around the table bring a holistic and global perspective to that economy and to — to what needs to be done globally. And that is still an area where we’re deficient, where I don’t think there’s still enough of a realization that the best we’re going to do — even in some of the largest economies, the best we have is coping mechanisms, unless we actually work together on how we address some of these challenges.

RUBIN: Prime Minister, we thank you for being with us and — (applause) — you were terrific.

(C) 2013 Federal News Service

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P3s: Harper takes Canadians down a risky road

By Emma Lui
October 15, 2012

In today’s Globe and Mail article, The hidden price of public-private partnerships, Barrie McKenna highlights the risks of Public-private partnerships (P3s): As McKenna notes, “Disturbing new research highlights some serious flaws in how governments tally the benefits of public-private partnerships versus conventional projects. Too little is known about how these contracts work, who benefits and who pays.”

The new research was a study of 28 Ontario P3 projects worth more than $7-billion. The article that highlights that “University of Toronto assistant professor Matti Siemiatycki and researcher Naeem Farooqi found that public-private partnerships cost an average of 16 per cent more than conventional tendered contracts. That’s mainly because private borrowers typically pay higher interest rates than governments. Transaction costs for lawyers and consultants also add about 3 per cent to the final bill.”

McKenna warns P3s are just too risky: “Without putting a fair price on risk, taxpayers will never know whether P3s are any cheaper than building things the conventional way. Set the value too high, and P3s become vehicles for governments to subsidize inflated profits of powerful and well-connected contractors and financial institutions.

He concludes that “Notwithstanding these red flags, Ottawa and the provinces continue to embrace the public-private model. P3 Canada Inc., Ottawa’s $1.24-billion P3 fund, has sunk more than $300-million into various projects since the summer.”

PPP Canada became operational in February 2009 and has a total of $1.24 billion to allocate under the P3 Canada Fund. PPP Canada explicitly promotes privatization of public services by only providing funding to P3s in water and wastewater, transportation and communications. In water and wastewater services, PPP Canada has approved funding for the Lac La Biche Biological Nutrient Removal (BNR) Wastewater Treatment Facility in Alberta ($3.8 milllion) and the Evan Thomas Water and Wastewater Plant in Kananaskis Country, Alberta ($9.95 million).

PPP Canada states that the P3 fund was created “to improve the delivery of public infrastructure and provide better value, timeliness and accountability by increasing the effective use of P3.” However, P3s in Canada have been found to be more costly and as the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives notes “a string of failures, delays, little transparency, and secretive deals proved these claims wrong.”

A proposed P3 plan for water services was defeated in Abbotsford because of public opposition.

This week the House of Commons operations committee will continue hearings on P3s and as McKenna puts it is “stacked with witnesses who like them.”

This week is also the week of final negotiations of the Canada-Europe Comprehensive and Economic Trade Agreement this week which could open municipalities in Canada up to European water corporations and put our public water services at risk to privatization.

To learn how to fight CETA, visit our Trade campaign webpage.
To learn about the Blue Communities Project and how to keep your municipal water services public, click here.

continue reading source: http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/making-waves/2012/10/p3s-harper-takes-canadians-down-risky-road

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Government’s fall agenda will unfold behind closed doors

By Greg Weston, CBC News
Posted: Sep 15, 2012

‘Most of the contentious issues facing the Conservative government this fall will be decided behind closed doors — explanatory memo to follow.’

As MPs take their Commons seats for the fall sitting of Parliament, Canadian and European Union negotiators will be huddling elsewhere in the capital, trying to hammer out a free-trade deal that could significantly impact this country and its citizens for decades.

But don’t ask what’s in the deal, or even what Canada wants and is prepared to give up.

Public debate? Forget it. Canadians won’t get to see details of the agreement until after the deal is done.

It’s the same story for the so-called Trans-Pacific Partnership, a huge trading bloc that Canada has been actively lobbying to join.

Of course, membership has its price — a free-trade deal with some of the fastest growing economies in the world, potentially impacting every sector of the Canadian economy.

Details to follow, likely after the deal has been initialled.

As Parliament reopens this week to consider the pressing affairs of state, the Harper government of promised openness and accountability is operating increasingly as though the nation’s business were nobody’s business.

It’s not just huge trade deals with Europe and the Pacific Rim that are being kept under wraps, and well away from Commons debate.

In fact, most of the contentious issues facing the Conservative government this fall will be decided behind closed doors — explanatory memo to follow.

Foreign takeover ‘framework’

For example, the prime minister is promising a new set of rules on foreign takeovers.

The move was prompted by a takeover bid by CNOOC, one of China’s largest energy companies, for Alberta-based Nexen and its significant stake in the oilsands.

This potential political powder keg is not so much the Nexen takeover itself, but the possibility the Chinese could use the deal as a template to go on a shopping spree for other Canadian energy companies and possibly control of the oilsands.

On the other hand, Stephen Harper has been begging the Chinese to invest some of their trillions in Canadian energy development, and now that a cheque is on the table, it would be difficult for the PM to block the sale.

The whole issue of foreign takeovers has been a matter of intense public interest since the Conservatives made up the term “strategic asset” as an excuse to nix the politically unpopular takeover of Saskatchewan’s Potash Corp. in 2010.

Similarly, the government’s promised new “foreign takeover framework” would be certain to spark heated national debate — if details were actually known by anyone outside the Prime Minister’s Office.

Instead, sources say the new takeover rules probably won’t be announced much before the government’s decision on the Nexen deal.

Omnibus bill, part 2

Government insiders say the one thing most likely to preoccupy parliamentarians over the coming months is the same issue that dominated the spring sitting: implementing the federal budget.

Most of the budget measures were passed in June in a 425-page omnibus bill that also contained dozens of other totally unrelated pieces of legislation, a hodgepodge of everything from Employment Insurance reform to streamlining environmental assessments.

The move all but eliminated meaningful debate on sweeping changes to Canadian law and governance.

This sitting of Parliament is about to get more of the same.

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty will introduce a second “budget” bill he promises will contain “quite a bit.”

The most contentious parts of the actual budgetary measures will be changes to pensions for parliamentarians and public servants to bring them in line with private retirement plans.

True to form, the government isn’t saying what other legislative changes it will toss into the mix this time.

One thing is certain: They will be measures the government of openness and accountability would rather not discuss in public.

source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/09/14/pol-vp-greg-weston-fall-parliament-conservatives.html


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Ten critical reasons for getting rid of Harper’s Conservatives

April 7, 2011

Should Stephen Harper ever get his coveted majority, you can kiss our compassionate, caring Canada goodbye!

It will be replaced by a mean, lean, spiteful dictatorship. This is not an ordinary election like any other. We must try to save Canada from an impending catastrophe.

1. The Economy: Harper considers the economy his “chateau fort,” He thinks he is the most trustworthy steward of the Canadian economy! Yet the facts prove otherwise.

He spends money as if he had a bottomless pit; but he spends it on his rich friends. When he took over power, he inherited a surplus of $16 billion, which he blithely turned into a deficit of $55 billion.

He spent $75 billion on a bail-out package for the banks, while they were making record profits.

He spent $1.2 billion on the G-20, boondoggle, entertaining a few friends, with an artificial lake and imprisoning hundreds of innocent demonstrators in the process.

Democracy is good for Libyan demonstrators, but not good enough for Canadian protesters!

He now proposes to spend $30 billion on the purchase of Lockheed Martin, F-35 warplanes, without a public tender or any discussion in parliament.

He promised to give away $6 billion to the rich banks & corporations, with no strings attached.

The Conservatives are Bad for business: A MacLean’s’ article questioned the Conservatives’ laissez-faire attitude: “Ottawa has stunned investors with populist decisions that took precedence over sound policy. Prime Minister, Stephen Harper is actually hurting Canada’s reputation as a stable and open market for business investment… No issue has sparked as much public fury as Internet download limits. The Tories protected Air Canada from competition with Emirate Airlines, an airline regularly ranked among the top 10 in the world.” (MacLean’s Feb.15, 2011.)

Poverty levels are at an all time high. Twelve per cent of Canadians are living in poverty, most of them women and children. Harper declared war on women, although they earn 69 per cent of what men make, Harper still refuses to install an urgently-needed national day-care programme, or to recognize pay equity, which would relieve women’s poverty. He is a pig-headed misogynist.

Guess what he will do to our public services if he ever gets a majority?

2. Democratic Deficit: For the first time in the history of Canada, Harper’s government has been found guilty of contempt of parliament! Harper behaves like a dictator. It’s his way or the highway!

He treats parliament with brazen disdain. And when he is found out, he lies blatantly.

He flouts parliamentary democratic institutions by hiding documents from parliamentarians, as well as freedom of information requests by journalists.

He threatens witnesses, and sabotages parliamentary committees; then he suspends parliament whenever a scandal or controversy is brewing.

Harper is a control freak.

He makes a mockery of accountability and transparency, although he campaigned on these principles. He muzzles his M.P.s and his ministers. Every news-release or pronouncement must first pass inspection by his officers or “mind controllers,” just like the despots in the Middle East.

Elections Canada has found Harper’s team guilty of spending more than the allowable maximum of $1.2 million. Then he tried to camouflage the crime. Harper was accused of behaving like a dictator when he fired Linda Keene, Canada’s Nuclear Safety Watchdog, for refusing to give the green light to a nuclear reactor she deemed unsafe.

Mounir Sheikh, head of Statistics Canada resigned over Harper’s decision to scrap the mandatory long-form census.

Peter Tinsley blew the whistle on Canada’s participation in the torture of Afghani prisoners, when he was the chairman of the Military Police Complaints’ Commission. Harper did not renew his contract.

Harper wants to kill the CBC, the only non-commercial, independent broadcaster that binds Canadians from coast to coast; flouting all recommendations against the concentration of the media in the hands of a few barons.

3. Governance: Harper lies blatantly about “a Coalition,” since he himself, tried to form one, in 2004, when he made a deal with the leaders of the Bloc Québécois and the NDP to unseat Paul Martin’s Liberals.

Most democratic countries rule by means of coalitions. Moreover, most democracies have proportional representation, which rules out the formation of a government with a third of the popular vote.

Harper wants to ban public funding of parties, so that they will not have a level playing field. The Conservatives will be able to outspend the other parties because their corporate base is very rich and very powerful.

The Harper government has muzzled Civil Society groups, environmental organizations, women’s advocacy groups, anti-poverty groups, progressive think-tanks and watch-dog agencies, by means of intimidation and budget slashing.

Having basically silenced all his critics, all that is left are the courts. Harper has already filled any Federal Court vacancies with his own supporters. If he should ever get a majority, he will replace 8 out of the 9 Supreme Court judges eligible for retirement.

4. Environmental Degradation: The Harper government refuses to cut greenhouse gas emissions.

They campaigned aggressively to get rid of the Kyoto Protocol and insist they will build the Western Gateway pipeline to bring tar sands oil to Canada’s west coast.

The Conservatives intend to expand the Alberta tar sands’ production, despite the contamination of water, the destruction of forests and the resulting C02 emissions of 100,000 tons daily,

His Senate appointees even killed a Climate Change Bill C-311, an Act to ensure Canada assumes its responsibilities in preventing dangerous emissions, already passed by the House of Commons.

5. Lopsided Justice: Harper is obsessed by punishment as a sort of “vengeance,” instead of the “rehabilitation” of criminals.

Although crime rates are decreasing, Harper insists on building more prisons, American style, at a cost of $10 billion.

Amnesty International has just slammed the Conservative government for its poor Human Rights’ record, especially in matters of freedom of information, the selective funding of N.G.O.s, violence against aboriginal women, and the silencing of dissent.

If Harper were to ever get his coveted majority, he would certainly bring back the death penalty.

He also flouts international law. He refused to repatriate Omar Khadar, a Canadian child-soldier, who was left to rot in Guantanamo Bay, even though all other countries retrieved their citizens from this illegal hell-hole.

Harper tried to cancel the long-gun registry against a national outcry by women’s groups and the RCMP, who regularly consult it for security reasons.

An OECD Committee has just issued a stern condemnation of Canada’s soft approach on corporate crime. Only one single case has been found guilty since 1999, although Canada signed an International Treaty in 1997, which aims to fight commercial corruption.

6. Warmongering: Harper practices fear-mongering unabashedly. He continues his obsession with arms by increasing military-spending; although a majority of Canadians oppose our participation in Afghanistan. We are now engaged in two wars.

7. Immigration: Ethnic groups beware!

Harper changed the immigration law by making reunification of families more difficult. He also changed the law so that his minister of safety will be the final arbiter of who comes into the country. The minister can declare any group of immigrants coming to Canada as “a smuggling incident,” whereby authorities could jail men, women and children for a minimum of one year. Harper makes the rules!

8. International Shame: Harper lost Canada a seat on the United Nations Security Council.

He alienated a majority of nations with his unconditional support for the state of Israel, right or wrong. He was disrespectful of the U.N. when he snuck out of a meeting for a photo op, to celebrate the opening of a Tim Horton’s in New York.

9. Aboriginal Abuse: The rightful owners of this country live in abject poverty.

The Harper government refused to sign the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples that was adopted by 144 other countries. The Conservatives also decided not to respect the Kelowna Accord that was intended to improve the lives of aboriginal people.

10. Canada’s Sovereignty at Risk: Harper is secretly negotiating a free-trade agreement with the European Union (CETA) without any input from Canadian citizens or any discussion in parliament.

Only Corporations and business moguls are privy to the negotiations. This treaty will touch every aspect of our lives. It will further deregulate big business, decrease workers’ rights and will accelerate the privatization of our resources, such as water. Our public services, such as health care, education, etc. will be up for grabs. Beware!

Nadia Alexan is the founder of Citizens in Action Montreal, e-mail: nadia.alexan@videotron.ca

Vote strategically for (ABC) “Anybody but Conservatives,” For more information: check out the following websites: Catch 22, Lead Now, Project Democracy, Why Stop Harper? One Hundred Reasons to stop Harper.

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