Letter to Glenn Thibeault re Bill C-36, an act respecting consumer product safety


I was listening to question period today 26th November 2010 and was absolutely blown aware by the ignorance of what you said.

One thing is clear to me and that is that you have not read this Bill C-36, and that you have not talked to your constituents about all the ramifications of this Bill.

You, it would appear, along with all opposition MPs have been terrified into agreeing with it simply because of it’s Election type name. Imagine trying to explain why you would vote against such a bill…shamefull! Yet if you had read it you would have had to ask your constituents if they really wanted you to surrender the right of our parliament to make regulations, or even the right to approve of those the Minister of Health will be instructed by the PM to bring in from foreign governments, bypassing parliament. You will be hard pressed when the people realise what you have done to even justify the reason for parliament anyway, because we will be regulated from overseas, and you can bet that Monsanto will have no desire to pay your pension.

You have heard all this before from both myself and many many others and yet you chose to ignore us and go ahead with this treasonous Bill C-36, and it is on your head along with all the other MPs who bowed in fear to Harper instead of standing up for the Canadian people and also Canada and saying “No. We want safe products but not like this Harper.”

I remind you of what you said in question period:

Mr. Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury, NDP):
Mr. Speaker, across North America today marks Black Friday, the beginning of the holiday shopping season. Bill C-36, Canada’s updated product safety legislation, passed by the House with all-party support, is being held hostage in the Senate for a second time in the past 14 months. Canadians need up to date product safety legislation now. Our children should not be opening toys this Christmas laced with cadmium.
Will the Senate again be obstructionist and act in contravention of the House, or will it respect the will of the House and pass Bill C-36 before the holidays?
[Table of Contents] Mr. Colin Carrie (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, Canadians should have confidence in the consumer products that they buy and the best way to do that and to ensure that countries and their importers comply is to pass our Canadian consumer product safety bill, Bill C-36. We are eagerly awaiting the passage of the bill in the Senate and we hope this time around the Liberal senators will not hold it up.
[Table of Contents] Mr. Glenn Thibeault (Sudbury, NDP):
Mr. Speaker, it is not the colour of the unelected senators’ tie, it is whether they will respect the will of the House.
The protection of our children should be paramount to the government. Parents have a right to know that the products they are giving their children are safe and toxin free. This is why the government needs to ensure that Bill C-36 is passed before Christmas.
Will the government show some leadership and tell its unelected bagmen in the Senate to adopt this important legislation for the safety of our children?
[Table of Contents] Mr. Tom Lukiwski (Parliamentary Secretary to the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I find it absolutely astonishing that the NDP, on one hand, would complain about the Senate of Canada and then, on the other hand, not agree to support our legislation to reform the Senate.
We have been trying to get the NDP and all opposition parties to support our reforms to the Senate for many months. I cannot find anything more hypocritical than a member of the NDP saying, on the one hand, that the Senate is bad and yet he will not try to make it good.

We can ignore the last answer because it is hardly worthy of a petulant child never mind a parliamentary secretary, but I would suggest that if the ammendments made by the chamber of sober second thought 11 months ago were incorporated by the government from the old prorogued Bill C-6 to the current Bill C-36, they must have had some merit. I suspect you were not even aware that they had been so incorporated and thus my questions to you are:

Why did the senators have to make those ammendments last year?
Why was the Bill sent to them in an unread, uncritised form last year – and this year too for that matter?
Why are you critising them for doing what you should have done in the first place?
Are you suggesting that they should blindly accept everything you send them unchecked and unread?
Are you perhaps a little jealous of the fact that they can read Bills and try to make them better for Canadians, including your constituents, whilst you are stuck with your leader’s dictates.

Bill C-36 passed through your House of Comomons committee a few short days ago in 2 hours and 50 minutes including clause by clause, which means that for the second time all members of the House of Comnmons were indifferent to what the bill actually says. Fear not Thibeault, the Harper people on the Senate committee are refusing to even consider anything at all, so it will get through there in minimum time too. Clause by clause is almost done now and I am sure the regulations are just waiting in the wings for Royal Assent, and publishing in the Gazette
The stench of fear emmanating from the House of Commons today is almost palpable, as you in the opposition cower and grovel, not what you were elected to do. This is a minority Reform / Alliance coalition which has the rest of you scared of your shadows, and just like the Republicans to the south of us they are running rings around you with lies, deceit and misdirections, arrogance and indifference. You of the opposition just let them do it.

This falsely named bill is not necessary inspite of what you claim, and will do absolutely nothing to hasten recalls certainly not in time for Christmas, though Codex Alimentarious may be with us by then thanks to you, and maybe just before another proroging of parliament to make sure it is well established, along with imported regulations, before parliament resumes some time next year.

Perhaps due diligence on your part will protect your children this christmas.

Read the Bill just once and maybe you will see for yourself because I am tired of pointing out the sections to you and your fellow MPs to no avail.

Your indignation rings very hollow Thibeault, and you have made me mad.

Jeremy Arney
CAP candidate for SGI in 2008 and proud of my desire to represent Canadians to Parliament, not Parliament to Canadians.

Another couple of ways we could go

Maybe to go another way?

I have been wondering what is really wrong with our system of politics here in Canada, and it leads me to realize some very simple truths, probably the biggest of which is that:

Today’s government is not for the people and hasn’t been for some years now.

Oh I know there are those who say I am just supporting some sort of corporate takeover conspiracy, and maybe they are right, but let’s really look at what has gone wrong.

There was a time when members of the House of Parliament or the Provincial Legislature were representatives of the people of their ridings , a throw back to the “good old days” of England when they represented the landowners who spoke for their surfs…! Far from ideal but for that time it worked as well as any system had.

Even the American system with it’s checks and balances for the three levels of government, Administration, Congress and Judiciary was a great idea for a republic.

So again what happened?

Groups of elected people (mostly men at that time- in fact probably all men) got together for each other’s ideas to be presented and accepted by the level of government, simply put,
“ I like this, that, your idea and will support you. Will you also support my idea?”
It seemed that this lead to the eventual formation of like minded getting together to make life easier than canvassing every other member, and thus the development of parties that started the wielding of power as each party sought to have the final say.
Naturally this had to spread to the voting public so that each party could come up with a proposal or “platform” from which the voters were asked to choose. Of course by then the concept of party leaders was established and we were on the slippery slope to where we are today where one man controls the lives of every man woman and child in Canada, even if he does not have the majority of Canadian behind him. Nor does it even matter if he chooses to promote the benefits of corporations over the people, he is the supreme “God” of Canada as he can make and break the rules with impunity, and thumb his nose at the people because he really only needs them at an election time of his choosing.

How far we have come from:

Our self governing Dominions are united by the ties of a common allegiance to the Crown: but the Crown has become the symbol of the people’s sovereignty.
According to our concept and practice of government, the King reigns to execute the will of the people who rule. The strength of the Empire rests upon the eternal foundation of liberty expressed in the ideal and consummation of autonomous self-government which is vested in the people of the self-governing Dominions as of right and not of grace. – Sir Robert Borden. 29th December 1914

Obviously in his day it was the King and now it is the Queen, and her present representative described it this way:

Our executive is the Queen, who doesn’t live here. Her representative is the Governor General, who is an appointed buddy of the Prime Minister.
– Stephen Harper June 1997

In an address to the Council for National Policy (an American republican group) at which he also said:

“Canada is a Northern European welfare state in the worse sense of the term, and very proud of it”.

The History of the party system in Canada shows that the system only works for the country as a whole when the interests of the people are the same interests of the ruling party or the oposition parties. Our current government is a prime example of what can happen when those interests are diametrically opposite to each other.

So is there a solution?

Yes there are two that immediately c0me to mind.

One is the Single Transferable Vote used in some other countries and retained for instance in Ireland although the politicians there wish to get rid of it. This is relatively cumbersome and like all voting today, subject to the ability of certain interests to manipulate the outcome in the voting machines.

The other I find much more interesting.

Abolish all party politics.

Yes that’s right no parties at all.
No pre-ordained leader for whom to vote regardless of the quality of the local candidate.
No overall platform, just the constituents and their candidates who wish to represent them.
Now we are getting to the quality of the candidates and away from the lying ability of the leader of some party or another.
So you ask what then when the members are elected what happens?
All members of the House of Commons elect from their fellow members 15 members to head up the various cabinet posts. There are no party lines and no need for shadow ministers or critics as those ministers would be reporting directly to the House of Commons, not just blindly and obediently following the PM’s wishes.

Those 15 members select from the remaining members two person,

One as Speaker of the House, and

One as Speaker for Canada, that would be the Prime Minister although he or she would not have a ministry (no change there) but would represent Canada and her people to the world through the decisions of the ministers with the House of Commons members’ approval. Each event the prime minister attended would be with the minister responsible for that event. In the event of weddings, state funerals etc., he would be accompanied by the governor general. Another useless position? Maybe, but a certain level of pomp and ceremony is good.
In the event that a minister or even the “Prime Minister” lost the confidence of the House he could be replaced by a simple vote in the House.

This same system should and could also apply to all provinces, but with a smaller cabinet in the various legislatures.

If we are to return to the Canadian People having a say in the way our Government works then we must have the control to be able to stop the government when they want to do anything against our wishes.

Simple question…Whose country is it?

I think it belongs to the people – all the people not just a few.

To whom does it belong now?

Harper as PM, and his corporate buddies.

I welcome improvements to the idea.

Jeremy Arney