Is the TPP the Liberals final betrayal of Canada?

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indigo 007 indigo 007's picture
Is the TPP the Liberals final betrayal of Canada?

 

 

The eras of Trudeau the father and Trudeau the son are very different. Younger Canadians who did who did not know the first must deliver close scrutiny to the second.

 

Since the end of WWll in 1945, the history of Canada and the history of the Liberal Party are very compatible as they have formed government most of that time. It can be argued that this has been a tale of betrayal: A betrayal well documented in the book, Lament for a Nation (1965), by Canadian philosopher George Grant.

Grant’s lament is for a nation he saw as being betrayed by its political and economic elites. These elites, working together hand in glove, these elites, could not resist the lure of the empire next door and have been willing to sacrifice the entity called Canada to continentalism.  Grant saw, even then, Canada was doomed to be assimilated by the US as the commercial and political expediencies practiced by our elites would result in an incremental loss of sovereignty and ultimately the end of Canada as a sovereign nation.  If it didn’t apply for formal union with the US, it would exist as a vassal state.

Grant’s book is full of stunning insights that are as true today as when they were written. The difference between then and now has been, as he predicted, is a precipitous decline in our sovereignty.

  He saw, even then, as it is now, that NATO( created in 1947) was not a defense alliance of sovereign states but an “instrument of the American empire.” 

He saw how foreign policy could be utterly corrupted. Where the dollars flow, so goes foreign policy. Where Stephen Harper allowed Canada’s foreign policy to become non-existent; it could be argued he was only asserting an undeniable reality: Canada is so highly integrated into the US it is utter pretense to try and have an independent foreign policy.  To do so, would be to roll back the clock, and in the process raise the fury of the empire. Now, we have a fledgling Liberal government that claims to be establishing a principled foreign policy, but the stipulations of being a vassal state render this a pipe dream.

He foresaw the rise of corporatism and its ability to demolish “local cultures” (nation states).  The “operating system” of corporatism is the neoliberal free market economy which impoverishes populations, socializes debt, privatizes wealth,  and creates enormous social and economic inequality.   

In 1957, Conservative Prime Minister John Diefenbaker signed on to North American Air Defense(NORAD) with the US. In 1959 he canceled the Avro Arrow program under pressure from the US. The Arrow developed in Canada was 40 years ahead of its time.  Had it gone ahead later versions would still be in service today. 

Before the Mulroney Free Trade Agreement (FTA) of 1988, Canada had true free trade with the US, where 90% of our goods and services crossed the US border free of duties and tariffs.  With the FTA Canada went from being a branch plant economy to a captive economy. It was left to the Chretien Liberals to pass into being the much expanded NAFTA in 1994.

Whether it was NATO, NORAD or NAFTA Canadian Conservative and Liberal governments( the Tweedle Dee-Tweedle Dum syndrome)  they were there to sign on the dotted line, and these were only the tip of the iceberg.  Since the NAFTA signing of 1994 Canada has signed on to a plethora of trade agreements, none of which have improved our trade balances and done nothing to improve the fortunes of the average Canadian.

Now the granddaddy of all trade agreements, the TPP, lands on our doorstep. History tells us the Liberals are most certainly going to sign. To ratify the TTP is to resign the last remnants of our nationhood. If this government could bring itself to be more forthright with Canadians, it would only call a binding national referendum for formal union with the US. Depending on the outcome, all federal institutions starting with Parliament would be dissolved, and the provincial premiers would become state governors.

As Grant observed, “The debt that we owe the Liberals is that they have been so willing to be led. The party is made up of those who put only one condition on their willingness: that they should have personal charge of the government while our sovereignty disappears.”

For Grant, the essential requirement of nationhood is a “thrust of intention”. There is no denying this thrust becomes more difficult when a smaller nation parked on the doorstep of the world’s singular superpower. The indolence of Canada’s political elites is that they are too willing to say Yes, Yes, Yes, to where it is expected as the automatic reply. Total compliance is a downward spiral to total servility. The much touted “friendship” between Canada and the US is nothing of the sort. Our political elites have turned us into a servant state, where their raison d’etre becomes increasingly redundant as they indulge in their retreat from real governance. These are governments that love the trappings of power but lack the mettle to exercise real power.

Canada is not alone. Since Grant’s time corporate power has gone from being influential to being globally dominate. With the TPP, the TISA, and the TTIP many countries are facing the hard choice of signing on amid dire warnings that do so is to resign their economic and political sovereignty. These are well-founded as it is evident these agreements are intended to lock down America’s domination of all satellite economies and further threaten Russia and China.

The world is now at a turning point. The present endless warfare, both military and economic, is being waged because the US is ruthlessly pursuing global hegemony.   In this pursuit, the US is all too willing to see satellite economies sacrificed to its imperial ambitions. It is also willing to risk WWIII as we are well into Cold War ll, and it is holding both Russia and China under military and economic siege, using NATO as its imperialist surrogate.

To accept these agreements is to foster a suffocating global fascism, to reject them is a first step toward a New World Order,  that is multilateral, much more egalitarian and legitimate. 

The irony Canada is that its political and economic elites gave up on it long ago; whereas the citizenry has a strong loyalty to it, even in our diminished state. Where Harper was openly contemptuous of the diminished Canada and sought to undermine it further, the Trudeau Liberals are willing to preside once again over our countries demise and play the pretense of nationhood, delivering empty promises and practicing pretentious foreign policy.

Older Canadians like myself bear witness to how Canada, like so many other countries, has been ravaged by freewheeling corporatism, the consummate thievery of the neoliberal free market economy, and how governments, so willing to accommodate, allowed their powers to usurped.

 The eras of Trudeau the father and the Trudeau, the son are very different. Younger Canadians who did not know the father must deliver close scrutiny to the son.

In 1964 the manifesto “ An appeal for Realism in Politics” was published in The Canadian Forum. This quote from it applied to Canada both then, and even more so now:

“If Canadians cannot make a success of a country such as theirs, how can they contribute in any meaningful way to the elaboration of humanism, to contribute to the international structures of tomorrow? To confess one’s inability to make Canadian Confederation work is, at this stage of history, to admit one’s unworthiness to contribute to the universal order.”

Stephen Harper clearly saw Canada as unworthy. His retrograde policies were a manifestation of his contempt for the country.  Now, the Liberals are in a position to show their true colors and their commitment to Canadian Confederation.

Robert Billyard ©2016

 This post may be freely distributed as long as it is properly credited.

 Please sign and Share:   http://you.leadnow.ca/p/natref-rjb2

 

 

iyraste1313

The acceptance of TPP will demand a new type of social movement which turns its back on corporate culture and economics...

No support for their ecocide mega projects...

Regroup and rebuild a sustainable economy from the grass roots hinterlands to the urban barrios

Build a movement based political organization...

Above all a growing boycott of the corporate system to the extent possible....priority to support local collective projects...

Above all building a fairtrade non corporate trading network and in alliance with likeminded southern partners! 

Paladin1

Final betrayal? Rather optimistic don't you think :)

kropotkin1951

My answer is this will definitely not be the final Liberal betrayal. Liberals always lie to get elected.

mark_alfred

indigo 007 wrote:

 Please sign and Share:   http://you.leadnow.ca/p/natref-rjb2

I'm kinda iffy about the idea of people calling for a referendum everytime something pisses them off, so I didn't sign the petition.  I did sign this official e-petition though:  https://petitions.parl.gc.ca/en/Petition/Details?Petition=e-193  The e-petition calls for an analysis to be done by the PBO on the TPP, and then this information to be shared with both MPs and the public.  MPs then would survey the public about the TPP to make their decision on it accordingly.

iyraste1313

 Please sign and Share....

signing petitions is no substitute for the real thing...taking to the streets....wich is what we need to be aiming for, as we develop our program of alternatives...now is the time...the movement for decentralization and socialism is gaining momentum, planet wide!
We must not be left behind! 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Continental social movements unite to challenge Three Amigos, fight TPP

As meetings with the leaders of Canada, the United States and Mexico got underway in Ottawa, social movements and progressive elected officials were mobilizing to fight the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

More than forty people, including seven New Democratic members of parliament and CUPE representatives, came together in a meeting hosted by NDP trade critic Tracey Ramsey.

The MPs heard from Victor Suarez, a former member of the Mexican house of representatives and a member of the group Mexico Better Off Without the TPP, as well as Arthur Stamoulis from the U.S.-based Citizens Trade Campaign.

Suarez outlined NAFTA’s devastating impact on Mexican workers and the country’s economy, as well as the rise of human rights violations.

Stamoulis highlighted the growing opposition to the TPP, especially among working people in the United States.

Canadian Labour Congress economist Angella MacEwan spoke on behalf of the Trade Justice Network, and emphasized that the TPP has little to do with trade, as 97 per cent of our trade with TPP countries is already tariff-free. Instead, the TPP is an anti-democratic deal that will create new rights and powers for corporations.

Labour’s opposition to the TPP was clear at the meeting, which also included representatives from the Public Service Alliance of Canada, the National Union of Public and General Employees, the United Steelworkers, and Unifor.

The mobilization continued at a noon-hour community meeting that drew a large crowd. Ramsey told community members the Canadian fight to stop the TPP is just beginning. More than 15,000 groups or individuals have made submissions to the House of Commons committee studying the pact, and Ramsey urged people to speak up against the TPP.

mark_alfred

Some news on the TPP from our neighbour down south.  Seems Democrats under Clinton may not be as opposed to the TPP as some had hoped they'd be.

Anti-TPP Amendment Fails at Heated Dem Platform Meeting

kropotkin1951

mark_alfred wrote:

Some news on the TPP from our neighbour down south.  Seems Democrats under Clinton may not be as opposed to the TPP as some had hoped they'd be.

Anti-TPP Amendment Fails at Heated Dem Platform Meeting

Why would anyone think that Clinton would oppose anything her corporate masters are in favour of?

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

mark_alfred wrote:

Some news on the TPP from our neighbour down south.  Seems Democrats under Clinton may not be as opposed to the TPP as some had hoped they'd be.

Anti-TPP Amendment Fails at Heated Dem Platform Meeting

Why would anyone think that Clinton would oppose anything her corporate masters are in favour of?

In this case, because she was forced to change her official position during the primary battle with Sanders. Most people who thought about it simply assumed she would flip back again after she locked up the nomination, and this story shows that to indeed be the case.

kropotkin1951

It's easy to figure out what Clinton will do, the oldest adage in the world works: Follow the Money.

iyraste1313

It's easy to figure out what Clinton will do....yes and all our freetrader globalists...we must be discussing the ideas of antiglobalists and national sovereigntists, considering their solutions! We must be discussing antiglobalist solutions!

This is what progressives by definition must be doing...searching out and considering the merit of antiglobalist soveriegntist and autonomy visions and strategies!

mark_alfred

Dobbin has a good article on the mainstream media bias in favour of corporate rights agreements (aka trade agreements that sell out sovereignty) detailing how the media has soft-balled the pro-corporate-rights-agreement Liberal Party of Canada on this issue in much of their reporting.

http://rabble.ca/columnists/2016/07/canadian-media-failing-citizens-its-...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

The new TTIP? Meet TISA, the 'secret privatisation pact that poses a threat to democracy'

An international trade deal being negotiated in secret is a “turbo-charged privatisation pact” that poses a threat to democratic sovereignty and “the very concept of public services”, campaigners have warned.

But this is not TTIP – the international agreement it appears campaigners in the European Union have managed to scupper over similar concerns – this is TISA, a deal backed by some of the world’s biggest corporations, such as Microsoft, Google, IBM, Walt Disney, Walmart, Citigroup and JP Morgan Chase.

Few people may have heard of the Trade In Services Agreement, but campaign group Global Justice Now warns in a new report: “Defeating TTIP may amount to a pyrrhic victory if we allow TISA to pass without challenge.”

Like the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, TISA is being negotiated in secret, even though it could have a major impact on countries which sign up.....

blairz blairz's picture

I expect that a final ratification of tpp will pass in spite of Clinton's avowed opposition. It will probably be part of a horse trade with The GOP  toprovide her cover. What that means for Trudeau I can't say.

 

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

No, it isn't. I'm sure Ol' Sunny Ways and his Merry Band of Thugs are only getting started!

Pondering

blairz wrote:

I expect that a final ratification of tpp will pass in spite of Clinton's avowed opposition. It will probably be part of a horse trade with The GOP  toprovide her cover. What that means for Trudeau I can't say.

If Clinton signs I would be shocked if Trudeau doesn't. The business line will be that if we don't sign we are locking ourselves out of a deal that covers 40% of world trade.

Mr. Magoo

If this is the FINAL betrayal, isn't that good news of a sort?  We can all collectively exhale.

mark_alfred

Here is a petition calling for rejection of the TPP due to potential concerns with food safety that it would cause.

The specific concern cited is...

Petition e-327 wrote:
rBGH-induced milk, which is forbidden to be imported into Canada, but which will be allowed back into this country under the TPP ... [and which can lead to higher levels of] a secondary hormone, IGF - 1, which is incriminated as causing cancer.

This petition is sponsored by Tracey Ramsey of the NDP on behalf of Ken Billings. Please read and sign.

https://petitions.parl.gc.ca/en/Petition/Details?Petition=e-327

mark_alfred

mark_alfred (on 26 June 2016) wrote:

Quote:

 Please sign and Share:   you.leadnow.ca/p/natref-rjb2

I'm kinda iffy about the idea of people calling for a referendum everytime something pisses them off, so I didn't sign the petition.  I did sign this official e-petition though:  https://petitions.parl.gc.ca/en/Petition/Details?Petition=e-193  The e-petition calls for an analysis to be done by the PBO on the TPP, and then this information to be shared with both MPs and the public.  MPs then would survey the public about the TPP to make their decision on it accordingly.

I just got an email saying,

House of Commons Electronic Petitions wrote:

This is to inform you that petition e-193, which you signed on the e-petitions website of the House of Commons, was presented in the House of Commons on September 19, 2016. You will be notified once a government response has been tabled.

So, when the government responds, I'll report back.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Hundreds of Thousands March in Germany Against TTIP, CETA

Hundreds of thousands took to city streets across Germany on Saturday as they marched against a pair of corporate-backed trade deals they say will undermine democracy, attack workers and local economies, and accelerate the threats posed by corporate hegemony and global warming.

Taking aim at both the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), European Union deals with the United States and Canada respectively, opponents say the agreements are not really concerned with expanding trade but rather increasing corporate power.

"CETA and TTIP threaten environmental and consumer protection for millions of people in Europe and North America," said Jennifer Morgan, co-executive director of Greenpeace International.  "These agreements will weaken food safety laws, environmental legislation, banking regulations and undermine the sovereign powers of nations."

Geoff

"Is the TPP the Liberals final betrayal of Canada?" Afraid not. There's plenty more to come: Bill C-51, more arms deals for dictatorships, joining the new Cold War in Europe, sucking up to the 1% (thanks for nothing, Chrystia Freeland).

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..nope not the final one. plenty more where that came from.

Ottawa Denies Access for Chinese Workers on Table in Early Trade Talks

Exploratory talks on a trade deal with Beijing have not included provisions to let Chinese companies import their own workers in Canada, says a spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada, which oversees international trade.

But a China expert warned that the Chinese government would press for the right to bring in workers for infrastructure, mines and other resource projects.

quote:

Charles Burton, a Brock University professor and expert on China, said that Beijing will push for the ability to use Chinese labour on major projects in Canada.

“What the Chinese hope to gain is the ability to engage in infrastructure projects using their own workers in accordance with Chinese labour stands,” Burton said. “That is a significant advantage for them.”

The government is sure to be pressured by Beijing, with promises of economic prosperity if Canada allows such a provision.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

So you Liberal fans on this site, especially you, Debater, is this something you cheer, http://canadians.org/blog/ceta-decision-delayed-eu-meeting-trudeau-government-bullies-get-deal? Well, how abiout it. You support Trudeau telling the Europeans there is no point in the EU if he can't have his way, right?

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Arthur Cramer wrote:

So you Liberal fans on this site, especially you, Debater, is this something you cheer, http://canadians.org/blog/ceta-decision-delayed-eu-meeting-trudeau-government-bullies-get-deal? Well, how abiout it. You support Trudeau telling the Europeans there is no point in the EU if he can't have his way, right?

So what about it Libs? Not going to reply? Can't do it when the facts arent on your side, can you? This is what is wrong with what this place has become. We got LPC propaganda posted all over these pages, but when you try to engage with them when the facts CLEARLY aren't on their side, CRICKETTS! VERY, revealling.

Pondering

Arthur Cramer wrote:

Arthur Cramer wrote:

So you Liberal fans on this site, especially you, Debater, is this something you cheer, http://canadians.org/blog/ceta-decision-delayed-eu-meeting-trudeau-government-bullies-get-deal? Well, how abiout it. You support Trudeau telling the Europeans there is no point in the EU if he can't have his way, right?

So what about it Libs? Not going to reply? Can't do it when the facts arent on your side, can you? This is what is wrong with what this place has become. We got LPC propaganda posted all over these pages, but when you try to engage with them when the facts CLEARLY aren't on their side, CRICKETTS! VERY, revealling.

Just because you follow the NDP religiously doesn't mean other people follow political parties as though they are religions.

quizzical

SealedLaughing 

you called it arthur.

 

 

kropotkin1951

Pondering wrote:

Just because you follow the NDP religiously doesn't mean other people follow political parties as though they are religions.

 Doh, any other words of wisdom? Totally irrelevant comment. Of course most people don't follow politics religiously. Only partisans like yourself and political junkies like me pay it any mind.

Pondering

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Pondering wrote:

Just because you follow the NDP religiously doesn't mean other people follow political parties as though they are religions.

 Doh, any other words of wisdom? Totally irrelevant comment. Of course most people don't follow politics religiously. Only partisans like yourself and political junkies like me pay it any mind.

In another thread I said "Trudeau saying that the EU is useless if they can't sign a progressive trade deal like CETA is akin to Harper saying Keystone was a no brainer." or something to that effect. It is arrogant and desperate but it is being given weight by some editorialists as true. The pressure to get CETA signed is enormous and it is Canada pushing the ISDS chapter. Canada is saying we acceded to the EU changes as if we gave somerthing up. Editorialists are also claiming Wallonia is the only opposition which isn't true. One commentator said that Wallonia is really just upset about their agriculture so other countries will pay them off and everything will be fine. I've lost count of how many times CETA has been announced as a done deal.

Environmentalists are winning against corporations and government on pipelines because they focus on the harms of pipelines not the government of the day. Little is happening in Canada but activists in the US and Europe are doing a good job of gathering opposition and getting it into the streets.

 

quizzical

little is happening in Canada because thy believed the Liberal bs.

mark_alfred

Just some follow up on post #19.  The government did respond to Petition e-193.  Here is the response:  http://www.parl.gc.ca/Content/HOC/ePetitions/Responses/421/e-193/421-005...

The government is pretty dismissive of the concerns.

mark_alfred

Regarding post #18, and petition e-327, today was the last day for this petition to obtain signatures, and it did not meet the required number of 500 to be presented to the House.  So, the petition dies, which is disappointing.