Do not pity poor Andrew Scheer.

What happens to a man whose entire working career has been that of a Canadian politician?

 He has stepped down as leader of the opposition which means he loses his free house, free car and chauffeur, chef and household manager.  He also has now to pay for his childrens’ private schooling and to cap it all off he takes a $100,000.00 pay cut!  Wow.  I guess the question is does he get to keep all those goodies until a new leader is elected?  Probably.

 I guess that is what happens when someone relies on the Canadian people for his livelihood. On the other hand. he can remain as a lifelong member of the House of Commons as he belongs to a party which is so well established in his home province that he is not in jeopardy of losing his conservative seat no matter how irrelevant he may be. By the time he finally retires his tax-free monthly pension will be the equivalent of a working man/woman’s annual wage.  Of course, as a US citizen, he could always go south and run for the senate there!

 There was some sort of joke that he would try again to be Speaker of the House, and that indeed would be a cruel joke as he was perhaps the most partisan and weak Speaker in Canadian History as his actions in the Brad Butt affair clearly showed.   To have him return in that position would indeed be an apt judgment on the value the elected representatives have in the so-called peoples’ House.

 Perhaps if he had been paying attention to the mood of Canadians rather than personally attacking his opponent, he would have been PM but he choose instead to be a fool. That should be a lesson to any would-be PM.  The people do have a say in who governs them, or should I say represents the corporate lobbyists to us all, and should be paid attention to.

 

His resignation has caused some speculation about who will take his place, which leads to:

                                            New Leader for the Conservatives?

 Well sure if they want to get anywhere other than opposition, they do need a leader with charisma and pizzazz and that doesn’t mean a constant anaemic smile. But look who the CBC in their never-ending speculating instead of reporting news is presenting as possible replacements.

 Peter MacKay. The man that betrayed his promise and written agreement to David Orchard who for the good of the party was willing to step aside for MacKay to be the leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Canada. The deal was that Stephen Harper would not be given the conservative name.  Well, we all know how that worked out, and how no matter what he did wrong – and he did plenty –  MacKay would always have a cabinet seat in any Harper government.

 Stephen Harper himself….Seems he retired only to promote himself as the world’s greatest conservative in case he got the chance to mess up Canada again.  His destruction of the working process of the Canadian Parliament is well documented and here is just one sample. (John Baird claiming the right he would not grant Ms.May as a duly elected Member of Parliament)

 Christy Clark, the ultra-conservative, libertarian who disguised herself as a BC Liberal and couldn’t name a corporate entity in BC which does not love her and gave her oodles of money in her failed bid to remain Dictatress of BC. Now openly supporting any conservative she knows and heaping praise on Brian Mulroney and Harper claiming they were saviours of Canada. Listening to her talk on the Power and Politics Premiers Panel on CBC is, to one from BC, sickening

 John Baird.  Perhaps single-handedly managed to get the CIA anti- Libyan mercenaries to keep fighting so he could arrange to bomb civilians, hospitals, universities, schools and water supply pipelines (and the factories to make more pipes) without any threat of air interference.  Perhaps his greatest asset was that he could escort Loraine Harper to functions when Stephen was out gadding around feathering his private nest al la Mulroney.

 Pierre Poilievre.  The architect of the unfair elections act, designed to stop First Nations and the homeless from voting, and pulling the teeth of Elections Canada to enforce a democratic election system in Canada.  Since being part of the opposition, he has attacked the PM personally too many times to count which is against parliamentary rules but he simply doesn’t care.  No thanks, Pierre.

 Surely there must be some real person of integrity and personality somewhere in the conservative ranks who can appeal to all Canadians of conservative ilk and they don’t need to exhume these people, except Pierre of course.

 But all in all, a very good day for Canada and a very bad day for Andrew Scheer.

Silly Season 2019

What a crazy world we now inhabit, but for how long.

Summer gets hotter, winds get stronger, water falls, pulses, gushes and destroys, and fires rage and burn homes but not trees.  We are being given a message and the leaders are ignoring it.   The children and young adults are not and we still do nothing. The constant need for power combined with political and corporate greed control us and will until its too late as long as we continue to buy useless “stuff” pushed on us by non-stop advertising. Do you really need a 50 cycle washing machine? A cell phone which is going to make you sick and maybe even give you cancer? A car which thinks for you and is controlled by your cell phone? A veggie or vegan burger called plant-based or beyond meat? A drug which has side effects worse than the supposed condition and can include death?  On the other hand, you do need to know which communication companies are in a rush to alter your electrical makeup with 5G, but will you pay attention to the side effects which you cannot avoid whether you have a cell phone or not?

Here in Canada, we are into an election cycle or totally stupid season.  Promises are made that have no real chance of success and costings are well hidden making them more attractive simply to get your gullible votes.

Take taxes for instance:  Promises are made that the very wealthy will be taxed more which is overdue and fair, but only if overseas dummy corporation tax havens are outlawed. I have, and even promoted, the concept that all businesses operating in Canada must use a Canadian incorporated and based bank and pay taxes on any profits prior to any money being sent overseas.   Of course, if investments must be made overseas, and why not, then there must be employees operating that business not simply a dummy account somewhere numbered or not.   Then there are so-called tax credits. What a joke that is.   Tax credits are listed under the section which includes personal allowances etc. and are discounted down to 17%.    That is, of course, a sleight of hand by anyone’s measure and if one doesn’t have an income sufficient to have that credit take effect then of what use is the credit anyway, discounted or not?

Taxes, of course, are a huge part of the economy of any country, especially here in Canada, and are used to pay for services which we have been promised.  Naturally, we do not have enough income from taxes to pay for everything so costs are passed off to the provincial and municipal governments, which have even more financial responsibilities.   Classic “pass the buck” down the line instead of up the line.

Another factor to take into consideration here in Canada is the interest on the national debt which must be paid out of taxes and is, in fact, the largest single yearly cost to our federal government.

How many of our current crop of deceitful political parties even understand the economic reasons for using the Bank of Canada instead of international banks and investors?  The answer is all the small parties except the Libertarians, and yes that includes the Communists, Rhinoceros and the Marxist Leninists, which makes them more Canadian people-orientated that the big 4 (5 if you include the Bloq).  Of course, the big 4(5) are corporately funded and lobbied to the extent that their hands are tied, or so they claim.    However, since income to the federal government is so important, they conveniently forget that the Bank of Canada, designed and created to fulfil Canada’s financial needs, charges a minimum interest to cover their operating costs and any money left over is returned to the Minister of Finance to help with government expenses.  You would think that it is a no brainer and indeed it is.  Excuses given by Ministers is that the Basil 1,11 and 111 agreements do not allow us to do this.  But those Basil agreements are between privately owned central banks, to which our publicly-owned bank should not have been signed on without a referendum or plebiscite from the people of Canada.  Did we agree? Were we even asked?  The answers to those questions are no we were not.   It wasn’t even a government agreement.  So why is our publicly-owned bank or government bound by it?

The inhabitants of this land for thousands of years are treated like vermin by the descendants of immigrants in much the same way those early immigrants treated them.  Maybe there is some movement to treat them as humans but it is very slow, grudging and inefficient.  Plots of land to which they have been herded give them little or no access to hunting, clean water or even air.  Mines, drilling and other extraction on their unceded lands are carried out with the full permission of governments which do not have the right to allow it, and most often there is no benefit to the rightful owners of that land, and I do not mean the crown.   Actually, our aboriginal people think of it as land that was given to them by their creator to look after, and we are stopping them for doing so.

Which political  parties today are talking about the Mount Polley damn disaster, or the unholy mess in northern Alberta where Bitumen is being mined, or the erection of Cite C damn in Northern BC, not to mention the Unis’tot’en peoples’ burial grounds and trapping lines being assaulted for corporate profit for which they have been offered no share, and to which they do not agree?  One major party has absolutely no interest in anything to do with First Nation, Inuit or Metis rights and another promises top priority and neither they or the third party have any intention of crossing their extraction buddies and their offshoot corporations.

Where exactly do personal attacks tell the people of Canada anything except that it is OK to be prejudiced against an opponent because that opponent stands in the way of their power? Is that what we want our children to be taught?

The fact is that Canada is rife with hatred, prejudice and discrimination of all sorts. Is this being addressed even obliquely?  Hardly.  In fact, it is being promoted by some parties, the members of which seem to have forgotten that their ancestors, or even immediate parents were/are immigrants seeking a better life here in Canada.  I know that is why I came here, to raise a family of Canadians in a beautiful, welcoming country full of possibilities for those who are willing to work for it.   Boy, am I disillusioned now!

The young people today are interested in having futures for themselves and their children on this planet now being destroyed at a greater rate for a few dollars and are any of the parties really listening to them? or are they making empty promises they have no intention of keeping simply to get their votes?  

Once upon a time Canada meant something in the world, now we are just a pawn to corporate power game. We do not lead by example any more. We do not do something because it is right to do it, but simply do what we are told.  Our sovereignty like our diplomatic value are both at zero, because of political allegiances owed to states such as Israel or The US with their totally terroristic approach to the world.

But:

This time we just might have enough disillusioned people here in Canada to have a widely differing set of politicians and parties in our House of Commons, and a  minority government to be supported on good legislation for the people, and bad legislation either amended or thrown out, again for the benefit of the people of Canada rather than corporations whose bottom line and CEO bonuses far exceed the benefits to humanity.

It’s up to us, so let’s get out and vote for the real candidates who will represent you to Ottawa not Ottawa to you, who will swear an oath of allegiance to the people of Canada, not a foreign Queen…. And that excludes Liberal, Conservative and NDP….maybe even the Greens…if only they could adopt the Bank of Canada instead of international banks and investors and become real Canada supporters…Ah well.

We live in a world of internet information false or not; cell phone computers rule our lives and control our thoughts and actions and we allow consumer products designed to spy on us and to shorten our lives (smart meters, 5G networks etc.,) to change our electrical bodies and weaken our ability to think for ourselves, even to communicate with our fellow humans, and this is progress?

Rock on Greta Thunberg, Autumn Peltier, Malala Yousafzai and all you young people, take control please because you are showing more sense and courage than all our politicians combined.

 

Pipelines, Albertan tar and NAFTA

Premiere Rachel Notley of Alberta.

13th January 2018

 I was cruising CPAC the other day and I came across your address to the Economic Club of Canada from 21 November 2017 concerning amongst other things the need for pipelines from the Alberta tar sands to tidewater.

 You said and I quote:

 “…..we need to be able to sell that energy from that energy industry to more than just one client.

Right now, all our energy infrastructure is built for export to the United States.  They are a monopoly buyer.”

 I will not argue with that at all, but there is a catch to what you are saying.

 I am referring to NAFTA, and in particular Article 605 which I quote below:

 

NAFTA

Article 605: Other Export Measures

Subject to Annex 605, a Party may adopt or maintain a restriction otherwise justified under Articles XI:2(a) or XX(g), (i) or (j) of the GATT with respect to the export of an energy or basic petrochemical good to the territory of another Party, only if:

  1. a)the restriction does not reduce the proportion of the total export shipments of the specific energy or basic petrochemical good made available to that other Party relative to the total supply of that good of the Party maintaining the restriction as compared to the proportion prevailing in the most recent 36month period for which data are available prior to the imposition of the measure, or in such other representative period on which the Parties may agree;

 

From this, it is clear from what you are saying that we are exporting 100% of the bitumen from the Alberta tar sands to the US and we cannot reduce that percentage without the approval of the US.  As long as that Article of NAFTA, or indeed NAFTA itself, remain in effect there is no way that even a “barrel” of tar can be shipped anywhere except to the United States, which in essence owns 100% of your tar.

It is also clear that you are suggesting that the disputed Kinder Morgan pipeline to Burnaby is to transport that diluted tar intended for export by super oil tankers to, amongst others, China.

Clearly, Minister Freeland, to whom I have written numerous times on this very Article 605 with absolutely no response, chooses to ignore this important NAFTA  article even if it must be clear to her that we have a serious problem.

What both of you are suggesting is that a claim in front of a quasi-legal trade tribunal is of no importance to you as the people of Canada will be happy to pay the millions in lost profit which the US importers of this Canadian tar will claim against us as soon as you ship so much as one kilogram of tar somewhere else.

Perhaps you have a way around this?

If so I would be very pleased to hear it.

What I personally hope is that President Trump does actually go ahead and cancel NAFTA and you can then at least contemplate exporting your tar elsewhere in the world and, I would suggest, through a port in Alaska.

Incidentally the concept that supertankers do not get into trouble, never accepted by the coastal people here in BC, is under a black cloud of smoke right now as there is one on fire in the China Seas after a collision, and there is no way that any spill of diluted bitumen in either the Vancouver Harbour, Georgia Strait or the Strait of Juna Fuca can be cleaned up any more than was that mess in Michigan. 

It is unfortunate that in your desire to make things better again for Alberta, you should choose to trample over British Columbians in the same way our original settlers did to the then long-time inhabitants of what we now call Canada. 

Strange how history repeats itself isn’t it Ms Notley?

Jeremy Arney

 

Ps,

We are a long way from this and getting further away each day

 

When the Landscape is Quiet Again.

Governor Arthur A. Link, October 11th, 1973.

We do not want to halt progress; we do not plan to be selfish and say North Dakota will not share its energy resources. We simply want to ensure the most efficient and environmentally sound method of utilizing our precious coal and water resources for the benefit of the broadest number of people possible.

And when we are through with that and the landscape is quiet again, when the draglines, the blasting rigs, the power shovels and the huge gondolas cease to rip and roar and when the last bulldozer has pushed the spoil pile into place and the last patch of barren earth has been seeded to grass or grain, let those who follow and repopulate the land be able to say, our grandparents did their job well. The land is as good and in some cases, better than before.

Only if they can say this, will we be worthy of the rich heritage of our land and its resources.”

Site C Dam

Here is my presentation to the BCUC on 11th October 2017:

 

My name is Jeremy Arney a resident of North Saanich.

Thank you for the opportunity to present to you and welcome back into the Site C fray.

I wish to acknowledge the Songhees upon whose territory we are meeting.

 

You have heard the financials for BC Hydro and I will not go into those except to say that I am well informed of them by Eric Anderson of Gabriola Island who I believe presented to you yesterday, and it is only by fancy and deceitful accounting that the 80:20 ratio is maintained in order for a yearly dividend to be paid to the province by a virtually bankrupt BC Hydro.

The question here is: Do we need Site C and if so why?

In my view, we do not.

Over the last few years, the demand for electricity in BC overall has declined in spite of BC Hydro forecasts that it would increase.   Dams built in conjunction with the Columbia River Water Control Agreement have served us well and it is my understanding that additional turbines could be fitted to these dams without affecting that agreement and of course more hydro could thus be generated should we require it.

We also have the environmentally disastrous and seasonal only operations called the run of the river projects from which BC Hydro has been obliged by the previous government to purchase their power at a higher rate than that for which they can sell that power either to Alberta or export it to the USA.

In that regard two points:

The State of California has designated our run of the river projects as environmentally unsound and “not green” and therefore will not purchase hydro from them.  On January 15th 2014 the California Energy Commission found that our Run of the River projects did not conform to the California Renewable Energy Resources Act.

Then there is the FTA and now NAFTA article 605 which states that we (Canada ) can increase our percentage of energy exported to the USA but we cannot reduce it and any price change upwards must be agreed to by both our PM and the US President.   This means that the promotional price set for 20 years by WAC Bennet of the Socreds is still in effect today as FTA was signed within that 20 years.   Our current Minister of Foreign Affairs who has taken the renegotiations of NAFTA away from our Minister for Trade has shown no signs of wishing to even consider this and so it will not change.

One of the stated needs for Site C was for more power to be transmitted to Petronas, which has now pulled out of the infamous LNG production, and for mining companies such as Imperial Metals at Mount Polley Mine and probably the Red Chris Mine as well. Since both are already operating why do we need more hydropower for them?

One question as to the actual safety of the Site C is that the banks which are supposed to hold the “lake” are not stable and should the worst happen and the Site C collapse will it take out the other 2 downstream dams and how far into Saskatchewan will the resulting torrent of water flow?

There is no proven need for this dam and the cost of refurbishing the area is lower than that of completion.

Now is the time to stop it, and I urge you to do just that.

Thank you.