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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The U.S. Military
Canada's Big Bro'?

Barbara Yaffe is often like a breath of fresh air at the Vancouver Stunned, as she often writes about relevant issues while actually acknowledging reality. She tends to get a bit stunned herself if Israel is the issue, but that seems to be required to maintain employment with the Mainstream Propaganda Machine. I must admit, I felt she strayed a bit off the reality-based reservation with her recent piece Symbiosis: We have energy, the U.S. can defend us. Granted though, much of what she says here is accepted as common wisdom, in spite of the weaknesses of many of the assumptions. Her piece begins:

A compelling dynamic increasingly is at play in Canada-U.S. relations: Symbiosis.

The United States is going to find itself more and more beholden to Canada for energy supplies, as Canada has always leaned on Uncle Sam for for military protection.

Not a bad arrangement, when you think about it.

The U.S. is the world's greatest military power and its defensive shield, built in its own best interest, has been designed to protect the continent.

Why would we spend billions when we couldn't hope to defend ourselves against the Americans, and the Americans would protect northern soil from any outside invader?

Indeed why should we spend "billions" on defense, when we can't defend ourselves from the country MOST LIKELY to invade us, indeed the only country that has engaged Canadians in battle on the North American continent. Mexico has oil also, but theUS hasn't invaded them lately. Indeed Mexico seems to be getting even nowadays, though their occupation of the US is much less violent than the US occupation of Iraq. But, really, why accept the bully most likely to roll you as your protector.

Perhaps Canada should consider the Swiss model. The Swiss have survived centuries of warfare among the "powers" of Europe, often being in the center of the action, yet have managed to stay above the fray and un-invaded. Perhaps if it were common knowledge that Canada would have to be won house by house, by farm, by ranch and logging camp rather than by capturing Stephen Harper and making him say "uncle" it would be more convenient to deal with Canada honourably when seeking say...resources.

There is no question that the United States of Greed covets what Canada has - the oil, the timber, the minerals, the agricultural bounty AND soon maybe most importantly the DRINKABLE water. Of course maybe I'm giving the U.S. more credit than they deserve and should just admit that they will just take what they want by military conquest if they can't get it through economic swindling - which is working pretty darn well for them at the moment. If Stephen Harper gets his coveted majority in Parliament and stays at the helm very long, he will probably retire as the governor of the largest state in the union.

Ms. Yaffe is right when she says:

To be sure, in saving on military spending, we have certainly expended some political capital; there has been a psychological price to pay in that the U.S. has always resented Canada for freeloading on its defense capacity.

Former U.S. ambassador to Canada Paul Cellucci went so far as to say so in 2005, when he publicly urged this country to start investing in its own military.

I agree with the angry Italian who preceded the idiot missing from a village in the Carolinas, but Canada should invest in a military to defend its own territory and interests. Canada needs a high-tech air and sea oriented defense to patrol and protect its immense borders, all of which are shorelines, except that with our biggest threat, the bully down south. Our military shouldn't be designed to help the US and its Global Corporate interests in exploiting the rest of the world. Needless to say, there is little that Canada should emulate that characterizes the US, especially the US of Bush the Lesser.

Right now the United States is trying to corral all the resources of the globe by scam or by the gun, using money borrowed from people who don't necessarily like them and won't necessarily continue to fund their dreams of empire. Canada should remember that it is a sovereign nation, with its own interests, which aren't necessarily the same as those of Amerika. I know the US is the biggest customer for Canadian exports, but all of the riches that Canada has are just as valuable everywhere on the planet. Making the US pay for Canadian goods in Euros might be something to think about in the meantime.

It seems to me like Canada should re-consider the whole idea of being the bum boy to the biggest arsehole on the block.

The Great!

(cross-posted from House of Infamy)

What does the Jaw That Walks Like a Man, to borrow a phrase from Foth, have to do with the House of Infamy? Well not much, but so much of the reason for this blog, or any blog that tries to cover the BC Legislature Raids and BC Rail Trial is the failure of the local Canned West/Glowball media to even cover theses issues. Worse yet is the tendency of the same suspects to minimalise or distort the facts when they do actually pay attention to these important issues.

Don't expect much coverage of the Independent Power Producers and the transfer of water rights on most of the streams in British Columbia, other than some Campbell and Cronies P.R. about debatable future hydro power shortages (in Phoenix, Arizona). TILMA, outsourcing (often out of province or Canada) of everything including Court Clerk Services, Medical Records and Billing, BC Hydro Billing, and ferry construction aren't really important enough for much coverage in our great news outlets. They have to save prime journalistic (to use the term loosely) real estate on the "Issues and Ideas" page for advertising and puff pieces like Mulroney redux.

This paean to the man that almost single handedly (with the help of his cronies) destroyed the old Progressive Conservative Party, leaving the carcass for the Reform Church of Steven Harper to crawl into to use as a disguise, should actually be labeled as advertising. Probably it was passed off as an "opinion" piece to avoid prosecution under fairness/honesty in advertising regulations (though I'm probably dreaming to think there are any, anymore in the new de-regulated Neo-Con Paradise). Upon reading (with periodic breaks for gagging) this virtually fact free revision of recent history, one is not surprised to find that its author, Gregory Thomas, "was national co-chairman of Youth for Brian Mulroney in the 1983 Progressive Conservative leadership campaign." I can only imagine that now Mr. Thomas is writing to the Pope to nominate Lyin' Brian for canonization.

Those with a strong enough stomach can follow the link and read the whole fairy tale, but I would like to point out some of the more absurd statements it contains. The sub-title is:

Despite the views on some mean streets in Toronto, the former PM is hugely popular and has a sterling legacy

Some people might say he's lucky to be un-indicted, and owes that fact to the ability to obstruct justice from a high enough political position......hmmmm, sounds like justice in British Columbia. Paper bags full of money are somewhat of a legacy in British Columbia also. It turns out those mean streets are all in a small part of Toronto.

.....beginning just west of Spadina, proceed 700 metres or so, continue another four blocks to Yonge, then 600 metres back toward the lake under the Gardiner Expressway, you can visit most of his detractors in the space of 10 minutes.

They work in three newsrooms -- the Toronto Star's, the Globe and Mail's and the CBC's -- inter-mingling and inter-marrying, thinking no original thoughts.

In other words, kinda like the only three newsrooms in Canada that aren't owned by somebody named either Asper or Black.

And so we come to myth No. 2, the suggestion that Mulroney's legacy is somehow inferior to that of Trudeau, who, by all accounts, looked pretty good on TV.

It is grossly unfair to compare the two men. Mulroney was simply better -- a better leader, a better husband, a better father, a better man.

Mulroney's foreign policy initiatives tower in comparison to those of Trudeau -- free trade, an end to apartheid, and the expansion of NATO to include Eastern Europe.

His constitutional vision, embodied in the Meech Lake Accord, has outlived and outlasted Trudeau's Ottawa centralism.

Seems to me that Mulroney and his sycophants, like Thomas, suffer from a near terminal case of P.E.T. envy. I don't care how many times you repeat lies it still doesn't make them true. Let's examine the first statement:

  • better leader? - Trudeau didn't destroy the Liberal Party, even though he led it twice as long as the Jaw took to destroy the PCs.

  • a better husband? - I'll admit that Brian managed to find and keep a woman just as shallow and materialistic as himself - but better?

  • better father? - Pierre appears to have produced the superior offspring, and I doubt if Justin or Alexandre would concur

  • better man? - how do you determine that Greg, do you have a queer eye for the straight guys?

I'll give you Free Trade, indeed, I wish I could give it back. Did you notice there is no free trade? Free Trade is whatever the USA wants, as in the Soft Wood Lumber dispute and eventual giveaway thanks to Harper and Emerson the Quislings. But Apartheid, Brian ended it, eh? and expanded NATO too, eh? Are you sure you aren't getting confused between Brian and his BFF (Best Friend Forever) Ronnie Raygun or things that required a lot of multi-lateral co-operation?

.....Mulroney was willing to put everything on the line with Thatcher and Ronald Reagan, his most powerful ally, to secure Mandela's freedom.

Oh yeah, I didn't know Brian broke Nelson Mandela out of jail in South Africa, with Maggie and Ronnie's help. There were more countries than Canada and the ones led by Brian's hero and heroine that put pressure on the Apartheid government which led to the freeing of Mr. Mandela. What did Brian "risk" or "put on the line," by the way, in supporting the sanctions and boycott of South Africa? Oh, I get it, he was afraid that the South African government would cut off the diamond supply for Mila, and we hadn't discovered our own in the North yet!

Then Greg raves about Mulroney's Constitutional Vision - The Meech Lake Accord. I will point out just one minor point and then I will go. But in just a few words, in this case quoted from mapleleafweb (just so Greg doesn't think I'm just making stuff up, like he seems to do). Without going into the details or whys and wherefores the great legacy of the Meech Lake Accord can be summed up thusly:

The Meech Lake Accord is a set of failed constitutional amendments, proposed in the late-1980s.

I guess my buddy Kirk must have approved this ad, "heckuva job Pointy," as usual! Maybe someday there will be a genuine big-city newspaper in Vancouver or some genuine TV News - but I'm not gonna hold my breath!