March 13, 2007

Mar. 13, 2007: Various

I have moved the section on mining to a new post with update, above. Mar. 14, 2007


Bill C-257 will hurt Canada's natives , Matthew Coon Come, National Post, March 07, 2007

Matthew Coon Come is chairman and CEO of Cree C3 Management Corporation and was national chief of the Assembly of First Nations from 2000-2003.

Parliament is currently considering C-257, a private member's bill that seeks to enhance labour rights by banning replacement workers in federally regulated industries. It should not pass. While such provisions sound superficially appealing, the reality is that this legislation is fundamentally flawed. Its enactment would do severe harm to rural and remote communities in general, and Cree and other aboriginal Canadians in particular.

To fully appreciate why, it is helpful to understand why certain sectors were first designated under federal law when our country's initial labour laws were drafted.
Industries such as telecommunications, broadcasting, banking and transport by air, rail and marine are unlike other sectors: Their proper function is critical to the health of our national economy and to the well-being of all Canadians. As is so often the case, what is potentially harmful to non-aboriginal Canadians is of even greater concern to Indian, Inuit and Metis people.

The effect of C-257 is that labour disputes could bring vital services -- in some cases, essential services -- to a dead halt. [....]

Canadian natives stress equal status as nation at London portrait exhibit -- "We are in a stage just on the verge of making some important roads of how well we survive as a people into the future with a distinct identity," , Tristan Stewart-Robertson, CP, March 07, 2007

LONDON (CP) - Natives from Canada called on the British Crown to remind the Canadian government about indigenous "sovereignty" at the Tuesday night opening of a major exhibit of historical portraits in London.

Representatives of the Haudenosaunee - or Iroquois - Confederacy Council urged a renewal of the original agreement made almost 300 years ago when four indigenous envoys, whom the British at the time called "kings," were brought to England to meet Queen Anne.

[....] Keith Jamieson, a historian and curator from the Six Nations of the Grand River community, presented a formal statement from the confederacy, approved after several meetings in recent weeks. It calls for the renewal of agreements that recognized the Haudenosaunee as equal nations and partners as Britain fought to defeat the French in North America.

"We, the chiefs of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy Council in a full session at the Onondaga Council House, Grand River, would like to take this opportunity to remind our English allies that these portraits are an expression of our sovereignty as nations and that we ask the Crown in Britain to remind their representatives in Canada of the commitments that we have together," the statement reads.

The statement was made as tension continued between the Six Nations community at Caledonia in Ontario over land developments.

Three hundred years ago, the deal with the British eventually led to the Haudenosaunee leaving New York state as the United States declared independence, and their settlement in Ontario. [....]

Native studies ... bearing fruit.

Kyoto Global Warming Climate Change

Discussion thread:
Scientists threatened for 'Climate denial'.

USS Clueless

Stardate 20020814.2036

(On Screen): I have just read an amazingly profound article, which now joins a select group along with Kagan, Mead and Peters as the most important I have read regarding international politics. (Update: here's a longer article by Fonte which goes into more detail.)

The very best analysis articles are those which take a lot of things which seem unrelated and show how they're actually part of the same thing, and what that implies. I try to do that here, but I've never written anything as profound as Fonte has. This article shows that a completely new international political movement has formed, which opposes liberal democracy as we in the US practice it. He refers to it as transnational progressivism and makes a persuasive case that it is the underlying philosophy behind such apparently disparate phenomena as the anti-globalist movement, the "sustainable development" movement, those who support the International Criminal Court, much of forces supporting "multiculturalism" in the liberal academia, the apparent hypocrisy of international human rights organizations who are eager to condemn the US while ignoring much worse abuse by third world nations, and the formation of the European Union and the structure of the European Commission in Brussels. It ties in the clear elitist elements that all of these demonstrate and the way that all of them are fundamentally undemocratic and demonstrably contemptuous of the opinions of the "common man". It also ties in with the entire idea that nations should have high taxes, central control and heavy social spending. These things don't seem to be related, but they all express the same fundamental political philosophy.

It explains why to some people there is no greater insult to throw at their opponents than "patriot". It explains the real basis of claims about "international law" and why those who use the term are so emphatic about insisting on it. [....]

The key concepts of transnational progressivism are:

Groups are what matter, not people. [....]

The goal of fairness is equality of result, not equality of opportunity. [....]

Being a victim is politically significant. [....]

Assimilation is evil. [....]

An ideal democracy is a coalition where political power is allocated among groups in proportion to their numbers. It has nothing to do with voting or with individual citizens expressing opinions, and in fact it doesn't require elections at all. A "winner take all" system, or one ruled by a majority, is profoundly repugnant because it disenfranchise minority groups of all kinds and deprives them of their proper share of power.

National identity is evil. [....]

He's got it. By God, I think he's got it.

B.C. man linked to terror camp

Investment scheme said to support terrorist activities
, David Baines, Vancouver Sun, March 13, 2007, via newsbeat1

A White Rock man arrested in Spain Monday is accused of helping run a fraudulent Islamist investment scheme that U.S. authorities allege was used to help finance Islamist terrorist activities, including a training camp in Afghanistan.

Brian David Anderson, 61, was arrested in a Madrid hotel by Spanish police who were collaborating with FBI agents.

Anderson has been linked to New York businessman Abdul Tawala Ibn Ali Alishtari, 53, charged last month with terrorism financing, material support of terrorism and money laundering. [....]

Search: Flat Electronic Data Interchange (FEDI) , Alishtari (a.k.a. "Michael Mixon"), from 1998 through 2004, Alishtari , Alpha Program , 100-per-cent interest per month, increasing to 200 per cent , Frontier Assets , Alpha Frontier Ltd., a company incorporated in the Dominican Republic.

Why Islam Forbids Pork? , By: Rashid Shamsi, (The Muslim World League Journal, Rajab 1420 - October 1999)

[....] Muslims are required to be selective and to distinguish between Halaal (Lawful) and Haraam (Unlawful) [....]

Moderate Muslims

Where were our media? Did they report on this effort by moderate Muslims?

Pulling Muslims from Dark Ages , Salim Mansur, Mar. 10, 2007
This past week individuals from various professions and different ethnicities sharing a connection with Islam gathered in St. Petersburg, Fla. The meeting was billed as Secular Islam Summit.

A statement -- The St. Petersburg Declaration -- was released which calls for an affirmation of individual rights and freedom of conscience for Muslims and non-Muslims alike in the Muslim world.

The declaration begins, "We are secular Muslims, and secular persons of Muslim societies. We are believers, doubters, and unbelievers, brought together by a great struggle, not between the West and Islam, but between the free and the unfree." [....]

A successful Islamic reform will occur when many more Muslims insist on the "release of Islam from its captivity to the totalitarian ambitions of power-hungry men and the rigid strictures of orthodoxy."

Then Muslims might find for themselves "a noble future for Islam as a personal faith, not a political doctrine" as the brave individuals gathered together at the first Secular Islam Summit dared publicly to imagine. [....]

Women, Feminism, Lesbianism, Saudi Arabia, Same-Sex Relationships

Saudi Daily Discusses the Phenomenon of Same-Sex Relationships in Some Saudi High Schools and Colleges , March 9, 2007, Special Dispatch Series - No. 1496

The Saudi daily Arab News recently reported on the phenomenon of lesbian relationships among students in some Saudi high schools and colleges.

The following is the full text of the article as it appeared on the Arab News English website: [1]

Saudi Student: "Administration at Colleges Do Carry Out Random Inspections to Prevent Such Behavior From Happening"

[....] "'My relationship with my family isn’t very good and I don’t get the love and attention that I should be getting from them. My family is very disconnected and there are a lot of family problems,' she said, adding that she is not paying much attention to her coming marriage. Rather she says her attention is fixed on Uhoud.
"Uhoud, on the other hand, feels similarly and also pays very little attention to other students who frown at her relationship with Fawziya.

"Fawziya and Uhoud’s affair is not an isolated one. ....

"There are other examples of such relationships blooming behind the walls of schools run by the Education Ministry. ....

"'What is surprising is that there was a married girl in her seventh month of pregnancy who was pursuing other girls to satisfy her sexual needs. Administration at colleges do carry out random inspections to prevent such behavior from happening,' said Al-Ghamdi."

Saudi Student: "I Blame a Lack of Awareness Among Families Toward Their Daughters" [....]

[1] Arab News, February 21, 2007.

You will be relieved to learn: "Education Department Source: "The Ministry Has Not Outlined Punishment for Students Who Are Caught in Such Relationships"" and that "Saudi Specialist: "Such Girls Need Help and Treatment""

If they can "treat" lesbianism or homosexuality, is it innate or learned? Is it possible that the dreadful treatment of women in Saudi Arabia and throughout much--though I am assured, not all--of the Islamic world lends itself to female-female bonding, rather than male-female bonding? Can a Western women imagine what it must be like to be denied the freedoms she takes for granted, then to see Islam making inroads in the West, attempting to change our ways?

To which I say: no, no, no ... a thousand times NO!

Islam Jihad Afghanistan Iraq

Afghanistan: The Rising Threat against Education Targets , Stratfor, February 26, 2007 2007 GMT

U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney arrived in Afghanistan from Pakistan on Feb. 26 on a surprise visit to the region. While in Islamabad visiting Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Cheney made a point of expressing concern about the resurgence of the Taliban and their al Qaeda allies in Afghanistan. This resurgence, coupled with the approaching spring thaw, is likely to result in a greater number of attacks against schools and educators in the country.

Part of NATO and the U.S.-led coalition's reconstruction effort has been on rebuilding schools in Afghanistan's small towns and villages. [....]

Justice, Ralph Goodale, rights

A Must Read

We get letters! Steve Janke, Mar. 8, 2007 via newsbeat1
The other day, I got an email from Dr. Tom Flanagan, political science professor and close adviser to Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Dr. Flanagan writes:
This afternoon (March 6, 2007) I got a call from CBC TV news reporter Krista Erickson. She said she was desperately seeking someone to provide balance for a story she was doing on Christine Tell and the Saskatchewan Judicial Appointments Committee. [....]

Becoming a judge in Ralph Goodale's Saskatchewan (updated) , December 29, 2005

Screen capture of interest - justices and donations

Deadbeat Writes , David Warren - February 26, 2007

[....] Our entire society has an interest in reckless, ideologically motivated judges laying the "rights" groundwork for the court legislation of polygamy. Which is precisely what the Ontario Court of Appeal's "three parent" decision provided. Yet the justices, in their reasoning, could not be bothered to consider the consequences of what they were doing. The destruction of a society's entire moral order being not the sort of thing they feel the need to concern themselves with.

McMurtry is the same chief justice who presided over the creation of "same-sex marriage" through a court decision in June 2003--and was photographed partying with the plaintiffs afterward. A complaint about this behaviour from REAL Women of Canada was dismissed only last month by the Canadian Judicial Council. This review panel did not challenge the fact; they only failed to find anything wrong with it. And given mainstream media who are utterly unprepared to make an issue of that sort of thing, why should they worry? [....]

... "revolution against decency." I am one of tens of thousands of publicly labelled "deadbeat dads," created by a vicious Ontario bureaucracy with the Orwellian name "Family Responsibility Office."

A must read article.

How did this festival fare? That's Chutzpah! -- Tradition and modernity meet at Vancouver's eclectic festival of international Jewish culture and talent -- Vancouver's Chutzpah! Festival 2007, running February 17-March 3, 2007, Dina O'Meara - February 26, 2007

Chutzpah! strives to live up to its name, which is a Yiddish word for unmitigated gall, or moxie, depending on your view. An old definition of chutzpah goes as follows: a young man who has killed his parents begs for leniency from the judge. "Have mercy," he pleads, "I'm an orphan!" Insolence, audacity; the word has many connotations, and Chutzpah! incorporates as many as possible. [....]

"It's a festival for everyone," Albert says. "Chutzpah! reflects a lot of collaborations, a range of culture. Its way of artists presenting themselves in secular, religious or traditional performances makes the festival a great meeting ground." Chutzpah! was launched in 2000 through the Norman Rothstein Theatre at the Jewish Community Centre of Greater Vancouver, as a vehicle for Jewish artists to present their works. Funded through an endowment by David Levi in memory of his wife, Lisa Nemetz, the festival has gained steam and notoriety since 2005, when Albert decided to kick it up a few notches and present more international performances. "You don't want to just coast, as a festival," she says. "It's a competitive world out there for audiences and acts." [....]

As a gentile sheila, I love the word "chutzpah"; Canadians may need a little more chutzpah to do what has to be done to preserve our Western values.

If the eco-snobs had their way, none of us would go anywhere , By Janet Daley, Last Updated: 12:01am GMT 08/01/2007

[....] Just as ordinary working people had begun to enjoy the freedoms that the better-off have known for generations - the experience of other cultures, other cuisines, other climates - they are threatened with having those liberating possibilities priced out of their reach. [....]

The environment may or may not be at risk from those multitudes of ordinary Britons who can now afford to escape regularly from their parochial isolation and the narrow-minded ignorance that goes with it.

But before we give the eco-lobby the unconditional benefit of the doubt, can we just look at the balance sheet?

It is not just air travel for the poor that the green tax lobby is engineering: it is a restriction on any mobility. Clamping down on one form of movement, as the glib reformers have discovered, simply creates intolerable pressure on the others. [....]

The price of spin , National Post, March 13, 2007, via newsbeat1

Over the weekend, the Canadian Press revealed that the RCMP had paid an Ottawa communications consultancy, McLoughlin Media, nearly $25,000 to prepare then-commissioner Giuliano Zaccardelli for his ill-fated Sept. 28, 2006 appearance before the House of Commons public safety committee. [....]

It was a waste because senior civil servants have no business spending tens of thousands of taxpayers' dollars to burnish their responses before Parliamentary committees or the media.

At $400 an hour [....]

Greg Weston: Envirowallet Attack , Mar. 13, 2007, via newsbeat1

While hitting up corporate eco-culprits for the massive costs of reversing global warming may seem perfectly fair and rational, those demanding polluters pay might want to be careful what they wish for.

In the long run, more green for Mother Nature could mean a lot less of it in the pockets of ordinary Canadians.

[....] The technology does exist to reduce emissions from oil extraction and refineries, and it is all enormously expensive.

Does anyone honestly believe the oil companies wouldn't pass along much of those costs to consumers?

Ditto for the single worst greenhouse polluters in the country, the giant coal-fired electrical generating stations. [....]

Maybe instead of Guilt and Victimology 101, Canadian students could learn something about economics, capitalism and how it works? People who know more than I tell me that when business is good, it lifts everybody's fortunes -- A rising tide lifts all boats.

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