Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A Hiatus From My Hiatus.

Back to my Ottawa Citizen column today about this.

The thing to notice is that what the federal Conservatives share with the Opposition New Democrats and Liberals is a comical inability to open their mouths on these subjects without insulting the intelligence of nine out of 10 Canadians. That’s the proportion of us who showed up in a February Harris Decima survey to affirm the obvious, which is that encouraging Beijing’s police-state racketeers to take over Canadian oilsands corporations — this is the core of the “national energy strategy” on offer, by the way — is unpardonably stupid and reckless. 
Beijing’s blood money is the only reason why the Enbridge pipeline idiocy is a serious prospect in the first place, but we’re expected to believe that’s beside the point. The NDP leadership is afraid that mounting a robust critique of the China National Offshore Oil Corporation’s $15.1-billion, way-above-market bid for Calgary’s Nexen Inc. might diminish the ability of the party’s doofus faction to throw “Sinophobia” mud pies at people.
The Liberal party remains beholden to party financiers who have been up Beijing’s backside for so long that Liberal windbags have become practised in the magical art of droning on for hours about the Chinese mess Canada has found itself in and everyone forgets everything they said the second they shut up. 
Meanwhile, as a Forum Research poll found in April, there are now fewer than one in five of us who believe that Prime Minister Stephen Harper puts Canada’s interests ahead of the interests of oil company shareholders. So Conservatives prefer to keep mum, too, saying only that the CNOOC proposition will be subjected to a “net benefit” test which everybody knows is completely bogus.
Former industry minister Jim Prentice helpfully admitted as much the other day. The test is useless precisely because it was “intended to be,” he said. Applying the Investment Canada Act’s “national security” test to the CNOOC bid will set off a similar charade because that’s what it’s intended to be, too. 
When the Act was amended in 2009, the federal cabinet ruled out any definition of “national security” and explicitly rejected recommendations to conduct national security reviews according to “concrete,” “objective” and “transparent” criteria. Just trust us, we know what’s best.
Meanwhile, don't get too self-righteous, hippies:
"In some ways, American liberals, even American radicals, have more in common with the Reagan right than they do with us. All of them, the whole bunch, are middle-class, Emersonian individualists. Emerson, Thoreau, all of these guys are scabs. Lane Kirkland [then the very Establishment president of the AFL-CIO] is outside the American consensus in a way that even Abbie Hoffman never was." 
 - from Which Side Are You On? by Thomas Geoghegan, Chicago labor lawyer.

"'Do your own thing' is not so different than “every man for himself.” If it feels good, do it, whether that means smoking weed and watching porn and never wearing a necktie, retiring at 50 with a six-figure public pension and refusing modest gun regulation, or moving your factories overseas and letting commercial banks become financial speculators. The self-absorbed “Me” Decade, having expanded during the ’80s and ’90s from personal life to encompass the political economy, will soon be the “Me” Half-Century." - Kurt Anderson.

Found here: "Individualism, Solidarity and the Love that Dare NotSpeak Its Name:"


Blogger dmurrell said...

There was an interesting oil executive (I forget his name) on BNN News a week or so ago, who, in his interview, strongly opposed the proposed Nexen takeover. He was the victim of a previous takeover. He stated that, before a takeover deal, the Chinese promise a lot to see the deal through, but upon signing the deal, do things completely differently afterwards. They fire all senior staff, and so forth. Here, they promise to keep a headquarters in Calgary, but this is a fairly dubious promise.

Why do the Chinese have so much money to do takeovers in other countries? Because they undertake huge trade surplusses, where they export far more than they import (and they limit imports to their country through huge trade barriers, which Western countries are too timid to complain about). China has a huge trade surplus with Canada, so they use this surplus to purchase Canadian assets like Nexen.

A couple of points:
1. When China buys big companies like Nexen, they bring in senior pro-military executives, who strengthen the Chinese spy network in Canada. Too little is being said in the MSM about the Chinese spy network here. Some operatives intimidate dissident Chinese immigrants and students here in Canada. As well, too little is being written about the pro-China lobby here, who ans where the lobbyists are and how they operate. Some of these lobbyists operate within business councils and China-studies departments at universities.

2. I am discouraged over the lack of a strong anti-Chinese- government lobby here in Canada. It should not be left-wing nor rights-wing, just pro-democracy. The Chinese government seeks to increase China's exports to the rest of the world. Why not set up a group, or a web page, to encourage the boycott of Chinese export goods, until China brings in democratic reforms, and until China stops its anti-Western foreign policies?

It would not take much to set up an anti-China boycott web site. It would scare the death out of the Chinese ruling commissars. And it would be populist -- it would allow ordinary people to participate in a public issue. It would help publicize Chinese human rights abuses worldwide. I am surprised that ordinary people think it is business as usual with China, buying Chinese-made clothing and all, given their anti-democratic, anti-human rights policies.

4:53 AM  
Blogger Roland Dodds said...

Off topic, but may be of interest to you Terry.


7:58 AM  

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