When will we see a fightback against Harper's austerity

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Left Turn Left Turn's picture
When will we see a fightback against Harper's austerity

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Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

From: http://rabble.ca/whatsup/casseroles-night-canada

 

This will be the first of many casseroles nights across Canada. Once Quebec  students stop the tuition hike and Law 78, we're all going to Stop Harper together!

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

When are we going to see a fightback against the Conservative government's budget cuts, most importantly the latest cuts to Employment Insurance?

In the past year there've been protests/demonstations around tuition fee increases in Quebec; the Quebec government's 'Plan Nord'; Quebec's law 78; global warming; the tar sands; piepline expansion and oil tankers in BC; the lockout of Rocky Mountaineer workers; Bill 22 and the teachers dispute in BC; postal workers strike; the 1% (occupy movement); Conservative party election fraud; Conservative government's immigration policies; the threat of war against Iran; Rob Ford's austerity in Toronto; the BC missing women's inquiry; International Women's day; May Day; the Palestinian Nakba. And this is not a complete list.

Yet there have not been any protests of note against the Conservative government's cuts. 19,000 federal government jobs are to be cut over the next 3 years. Already vital frontline services have been cut. Most importantly, Employment Insurance has been severely cut again, more or less turned into Workfare.

The response from social movements? Bumpkus, nothing, nada.

The silence from the union movement is deafening. Hoping that the NDP will get elected in 2015 and reverse some of the cuts is simply not good enough.

And the grassroots social movements seem to have their attention focused elswhere. Everywhere it seems, except the Harper government's austerity.

What gives?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

You need to read more. This has been discussed all over the place.

 

for starters:

discussion on babble with links

Speak out against Harper's budget budget2012.ndp.ca

 

http://apps.facebook.com/petitions/takeaction/936/748/575/

Don't let Stephen Harper Sneak his "Trojan Horse" Budget Bill Through - The Petition Site apps.facebook.com

 

I have union links to anti-austerity as well, will dig them up when I have more time - getting supper ready now.

Slumberjack

Yeah, I'm nearly blue in the face from years of discussion about the what gives.  NDPP posted a link in the Anarchy thread that might go some way toward formulating an answer to the question.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

I'm talking about a movement in the streets against Harper's austerity. This is all fine and well as far as it goes, but it's confined to the realm of online activism.

Boom Boom wrote:

[url=http://rabble.ca/whatsup/casseroles-night-canada]Casseroles night in Canada[/url]

This will be the first of many casseroles nights across Canada. Once Quebec students stop the tuition hike and Law 78, we're all going to Stop Harper together!

I'm fully aware of the Casseroles night in Canada. Though as I understand it the maim thrust of this is solidarity with the student/social struggle in Quebec. This is the only mention I've seen of the Casseroles being turned into a movement against Harper. Even then it's not clear that this is anything more than something that Derrick wrote when he posted this on rabble. I guess we'll see on Wednesday evening to what extent opposing Harper's cuts figures in the Casserole protests in the roc.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I've been calling for a General Strike for a while now, but the idea always gets shot down.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Ok, I really should have titlted this thread "When will we see a fightback in the streets against the Harper government's austerity?"

The 'in the streets' part is critical. It's what we're not seeing.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Boom Boom wrote:

I've been calling for a General Strike for a while now, but the idea always gets shot down.

Well, we have union bureaucrats in their 50's making six figure salaries to thank for that. They have no interest in supporting a general strike. It's in their interest to do nothing to rock the boat that might threaten their ability to reitre comfortably in a few years.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn-- please don't make such assumptions.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2012/04/04/ottawa-national-de...

http://www.globalmontreal.com/canadians+protest+age+of+austerity+at+may+... http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/Federal+workers+take+Parliament+Hill+r...

http://m.ottawasun.com/2012/05/01/protesters-decry-public-service-cuts-a...

As for general strike-- right now the people are moving towards us. Comments about unions in the media are getting more positive --

people are starting to get it like they have not in many years.

There are many who do not think that a general strike organized by labour is a good idea. It would be seen as an attack on the very people whose support we want right now-- not the employers.

There is a lot happening right now. Some of those union leaders in their 50s have seen what has happened before when you take the wrong kind of action at the wrong time. (That was kinda bit ageist don't you think?)

What is a union bureaucrat? are you talking about union activists? Or government workers who happen to be unionized? It is not clear which you are insulting.

I think that was a terrible anti-union comment. And by the way most government workers in their 50s are not make 6-figures except in their dreams but thanks for the union bashing. Which side are you on anyway?

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Left Turn wrote:

Boom Boom wrote:

I've been calling for a General Strike for a while now, but the idea always gets shot down.

Well, we have union bureaucrats in their 50's making six figure salaries to thank for that. They have no interest in supporting a general strike. It's in their interest to do nothing to rock the boat that might threaten their ability to reitre comfortably in a few years.

Wow. I think this shoots holes in your credibility.

6079_Smith_W

Left Turn wrote:

The 'in the streets' part is critical. It's what we're not seeing.

Right.

Because it has always been the way to lasting and permanent change in the past.

The "in the streets" part is about as critical as Thomas Jefferson's claim that people have to spray blood all over the place  to feed liberty, like it is some God demanding sacrifice.

In reality, no one can predict what brings about change.  Sometimes it is one person standing up in a committee room and asking a senator if he has no shame.

 

finois finois's picture

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

The 'in the streets' part is critical. It's what we're not seeing.

Right.

Because it has always been the way to lasting and permanent change in the past.

The "in the streets" part is about as critical as Thomas Jefferson's claim that people have to spray blood all over the place  to feed liberty, like it is some God demanding sacrifice.

In reality, no one can predict what brings about change.  Sometimes it is one person standing up in a committee room and asking a senator if he has no shame.

 

i agree with you on this.

But the moment has happened.

The B.C. Tory MP admitting on video that none of backbenchers have imput and his vote means nothing. Why elect a pc member then.

 

kropotkin1951

I didn't find Left Turn's comments anti union but anti union bureaucracy.  I didn't think Left Turn was referring to activists or government workers. He was referring to what the old union movement used to call pork choppers.  I personally blame the fixation with bricks and mortar for much of the refusal to be proactive.  When the government threatens heavy fines they are threatening the bricks and mortar. The larger the assets the more control the bean counters have over an organization. That led to the bureaucratic nature of unions and is a real hindrance to movement building. 

I do think Left Turn you need to look past the reps for the root causes of the problem because most union reps work very hard for their money and the stress takes its toll on the ones that care. I know many union reps who spend their "off" hours being involved in social justice work the good salaries allow them that privilege.  Like all workers with pensions they are looking forward to retirement and that's not either wrong nor abnormal. Having said that union reps with pension and benefits make six figures and the top officials of the large unions are remunerated better than that.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

For the record, as far as I know, none of those who shot down my idea of a General Strike here on babble or elsewhere were union bureaucrats however that term is defined. I've been raising the idea for well over six months now.

kropotkin1951

Boom Boom the truth is that no leader of a major union in Canada will call for a General Strike. In BC the Fed does rallies and have been opposed to all calls for general strikes.  Austerity programs were born in BC in 1983 and the union movement then was strong and vibrant. Some of the unions in conjunction with a grassroots community organizers and groups began a fight back that was building to a general strike  A union "bureaucrat", Union Jack Munroe, defused the growing general strike by cutting a deal with the government.  The Solidarity Coalition in my province was sold out by the union leadership plain and simple.  I am still a proud trade unionist but the idea that the head of the BCGEU or the IUOE or the Steelworkers will be calling for a general strike to oppose Harper is fantasy land.

If they where going to take a stand INCO would have been good or maybe Air Canada or maybe the CP Rail employees today.

MegB

Left Turn wrote:

Boom Boom wrote:

I've been calling for a General Strike for a while now, but the idea always gets shot down.

Well, we have union bureaucrats in their 50's making six figure salaries to thank for that. They have no interest in supporting a general strike. It's in their interest to do nothing to rock the boat that might threaten their ability to reitre comfortably in a few years.

That's not entirely fair.  Most of the union leaders I've met work their asses off, and not just for their particular bailiwick.  They're politicians, sure, but they're activists too, and take solidarity seriously by working with other unions (and not just for predatory purposes) for the betterment of workers.  The exception to this would be Buzz "Mr. I-want-a-senate-appointment" Hargrove.

I'm sure there are others out there like old Buzz, but is there something wrong with being paid well for hard work and receiving an appropriate pension (that you've paid into for decades)? How low do you want to set the bar?

Sean in Ottawa

I work for a union.

My trouble with a general strike is that it would play in to the hands of our enemies. There would not be enough public support and we would all be legislated back. We would gain nothing and lose a lot.

We need to work on the support part first and then the means of demonstrating it rather than expose ourselves by doing the reverse.

Support is coming-- perhaps we will have it in the next year or so but not right now.

I also know a lot of union leaders and I don't think they operate out of fear or greed. There are exceptions but these are rare.

Bureaucrats is not leader either. Bureaucrat would be the union workers -- like me. 6 figures is a joke and quite an insult.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:
I didn't find Left Turn's comments anti union but anti union bureaucracy.  I didn't think Left Turn was referring to activists or government workers. He was referring to what the old union movement used to call pork choppers.  I personally blame the fixation with bricks and mortar for much of the refusal to be proactive.  When the government threatens heavy fines they are threatening the bricks and mortar. The larger the assets the more control the bean counters have over an organization. That led to the bureaucratic nature of unions and is a real hindrance to movement building.

Thanks Kropotkin, the union bureaucracy is indeed who I'm talking about. The likes of Ken Georgetti and his ilk. Back in 2009, when rank and file union members wanted to have a large rally on Parliament Hill on the pension issue, Georgetti made a back-room deal with the Conservative government in which the unions agreed to call off any plan for a protest in return for a promise from Harper that the government would act to protect pensions. Well, the unions called off plans for a protests, and then the Harper government turned around and stabbed the unions in the back on the pension issue.

kropotkin1951 wrote:
I do think Left Turn you need to look past the reps for the root causes of the problem because most union reps work very hard for their money and the stress takes its toll on the ones that care. I know many union reps who spend their "off" hours being involved in social justice work the good salaries allow them that privilege.  Like all workers with pensions they are looking forward to retirement and that's not either wrong nor abnormal. Having said that union reps with pension and benefits make six figures and the top officials of the large unions are remunerated better than that.

I agree that most union reps work quite hard for their money. However, they do not appear to have the ability to get the Canadian Labour Congress to take actions more radical than what Ken Georgetti and other top CLC officials are prepared to support.

 

Sean in Ottawa

Sorry but i know quite a few of the people who worked on that campaign and who are still working for better pensions for everyone.

Do you have any idea how close that came to being a reality? Yes, the unions got stabbed in the back on that but they had convinced many people and changed the entire conversation and nearly got their way (last minute lobbying is what did it in as I understand it). Still the work they did will make a change happen -- but we do have to get rid of the Harper majority to get there.

And I don't know what you mean about a demonstration being called off-- I certainly remember attending one on the Hill in 2009 over pensions with a lot of the staff of the CLC there. And they were there on their own time as well.

Here is a part of the speech to it:

http://www.canadianlabour.ca/news-room/speeches/speech-nortel-pensioners...

More on the CLC campaign:

http://www.canadianlabour.ca/action-center/retirement-security-for-everyone

BTW- I don't work for the CLC

 

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Boom Boom the truth is that no leader of a major union in Canada will call for a General Strike. In BC the Fed does rallies and have been opposed to all calls for general strikes.  Austerity programs were born in BC in 1983 and the union movement then was strong and vibrant. Some of the unions in conjunction with a grassroots community organizers and groups began a fight back that was building to a general strike  A union "bureaucrat", Union Jack Munroe, defused the growing general strike by cutting a deal with the government.  The Solidarity Coalition in my province was sold out by the union leadership plain and simple.  I am still a proud trade unionist but the idea that the head of the BCGEU or the IUOE or the Steelworkers will be calling for a general strike to oppose Harper is fantasy land.

Agreed, no union leader is going to call a general strike at this moment in time. We're clearly not going to go from nothing to general strike in one step. The question is, why has nobody organized a national day of action against Harper's cuts comparable to the national days of action around the proroguing of parliament or the election fraud scandal?

Kropotkin1951 wrote:

If they where going to take a stand INCO would have been good or maybe Air Canada or maybe the CP Rail employees today.

The BC Fed held a rally this afternoon to support the CP Rail workers and oppose the Harper Government's back to work legislation. They mentioned some of the other anti-union actions of the Harper government; and they mentioned Harper's cuts, notably the cuts to EI and the closure of the Kitsilano coast guard station (this virtually guarantees that there will be more preventable drowings down the way in the waters off Vancouver). There were about 200 people in attendance.

However:

-- There were no poc among the speakers -- which tends to mean that many oc don't see themselves as part of the movement;

-- There three speakers where all white men (only the mc was a woman)

-- All the speakers and the mc were union members -- which leads many activists who don't identify as union members in their activism to not indentify with the movement

-- There was no chanting and no march -- rallies without chanting and a march feel somewhat deflating to me

-- There was no publicity beyond union membership lists and social media

-- The crowd was far too white.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Sorry but i know quite a few of the people who worked on that campaign and who are still working for better pensions for everyone.

Do you have any idea how close that came to being a reality? Yes, the unions got stabbed in the back on that but they had convinced many people and changed the entire conversation and nearly got their way (last minute lobbying is what did it in as I understand it). Still the work they did will make a change happen -- but we do have to get rid of the Harper majority to get there.

And I don't know what you mean about a demonstration being called off-- I certainly remember attending one on the Hill in 2009 over pensions with a lot of the staff of the CLC there. And they were there on their own time as well.

Here is a part of the speech to it:

http://www.canadianlabour.ca/news-room/speeches/speech-nortel-pensioners...

More on the CLC campaign:

http://www.canadianlabour.ca/action-center/retirement-security-for-everyone

BTW- I don't work for the CLC

I stand corrected that there was no demo on parliament hill around pensions. However, I understand that many rank and file union members wanted to hold a follow-up rally to call for a doubling of CPP benefits, and that Ken Georgetti reached a deal with the government in which the government promised some action to improve pensions, in exchange for a guarantee that there would be no demo on the issue. Harper's supposed 'improvement' to the pension system were the changes to the private retirement savings system announced in the 2010 budget. A complete stab in the back that got only a press release response from the CLC.

Sean in Ottawa

Again I don't think that is fair at all -- the CLC has an ongoing pension campaign. I see lots of stuff coming out from them on this.

The doubling of the CPP benefits is not a "rank and file" thing -- this is what the leadership is pushing. I think eventually they will get it too. I see Georgetti talking about this constantly.

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

A General Strike isn't just one day - it is supposed to last until the demands are met. Yes, some will be arrested for not obeying back to work legislation, but that tactic will backfire on the government as those essential to the workforce are jailed. I think it's just such a huge embarrassment to the government that charges and jail time are lilely thrown out the window. And if we're looking at over a million people out on the street day after day, night after night, probably with pots and pans in 'les casseroles' protests, with increasing size as time goes on, I think governments would cave. That's my read, anyway. If I'm wrong, well, then I'll accept that. But I think this country is so pissed off with Harper that a General Strike would fall on sympathetic ears. Smile

Vansterdam Kid

Left Turn wrote:

Ok, I really should have titlted this thread "When will we see a fightback in the streets against the Harper government's austerity?"

The 'in the streets' part is critical. It's what we're not seeing.

Two reasons, people are angry but not angry enough and there would need to be momentum. Only die hards protest, once it becomes more mainstream and less "weird" people go into the streets and protest more "mainstream" people join them leading to a social acceptance amongst the sympathetic but protest shy.

As for the whole bureaucratic nature of unions, preventing them from taking a lead in fomenting social protest, well yeah. They're useful institutions as a counter weight to corporate power, but they're slow to change as they are a form of government in themselves, hence they love obscurantism and making things complicated thus discouraging anything from happening. They are also mired in old fashioned thinking and the promotion of an ossified work culture that I would call conservative in a literal sense (as in slow to change) and unimaginative (as in adopting new modes of thought). For example, I would not say they are responsive to changing cultural-economic desires, for instance doing more for part time workers because maybe people want to work part time, which would do more to promote flexible work/life balance. This is not a code for flexibility to exploit, it simply refers to the fact that in a case like this part-timers ought to have the same rights as full timers. But unions see part-time as an inherent bad, so they have a fetish for solely promoting/protecting the interests of full time employees and full time employment, like this is the 50s or something.

So when will we see something like what's happening in Quebec happening in the rest of Canada? I'm not sure. But I can't see unions leading it. They're just not able to. That said if they have the connections, they ought to use them for something as a nexus to start something.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

The doubling of the CPP benefits is not a "rank and file" thing -- this is what the leadership is pushing. I think eventually they will get it too. I see Georgetti talking about this constantly.

Ok, so the CLC has an ongoing campaign on the doubling of CPP benefits. Fine. I still don't see Ken Georgetti helping to organize a national day of action on this issue with demos in several major Canadian cities.

I don't deny that the labour movement does what it does, but I don't think it's enough. Not by a long shot.

I also criticize folks who organized the demos against proroguing Parliament in January 2010, and the folks who organized the demos against the election fraud back in March, and the occupy movement, and the NDP, for not organizing a national day of action against Harper's austerity. Sure, there have been demos where Harper's cuts have been denounced, but there hasn't been a national day of action where opposition to Harper's austerity cuts have been the main focus.

Plus, I don't see the NDP MP's clamouring to speak out against Harper's cuts at demos. Maybe they've all been muzzled on this issue they way they appear to have been muzzled on the Quebec student strike. I don't know, but until I see evidence of NDP MP's speaking publicly at demos against Harper's cuts, I'll consider it a possibility.

Slumberjack

Boom Boom wrote:
But I think this country is so pissed off with Harper that a General Strike would fall on sympathetic ears.

The discontent seems to be everywhere.  I hear the most unlikely opinions exchanged in conversation between the the most unlikely people.  It's when people nod in agreement if I care to toss my two cents worth in that I find something peculiar is going on.  It's like a deep sense of betrayal run through everything, from Halifax to Ottawa, and an awareness that the people stand utterly alone against the corporations and the banks.

Fidel

Hey SJ, read this: NDP making huge gains as Canada tilts leftward: poll

I just thought it would brighten your day because I know how much you hate these Reform Party retreads in phony-majority power. Wink

With the NDP breathing down their necks the ReformaTopries are politically neutered and will continue governing as if they still have a minority from here to 2015. It's too bad Harper lost his bff with Ignatieff, or they'd really be selling us down the Mississippi in the style and manner of Brian Mulroney. Egg shells to 2015. lol!

Slumberjack

It just goes to show the level of desperation that is beginning to set in amongst the population.  They're being kettled in from all sides in search of an escape.

Fidel

You can throw in the towel or use it to wipe the sweat off your face. No fear, SJ. Let's give 'er snot!

Scorpions wrote:
The world is closing in
Did you ever think
That we could be so close, like brothers
The future's in the air
I can feel it everywhere
Blowing with the wind of change

Slumberjack

Yes, there was a certain energy about seeing millions of people delivering themselves from the last vestiges of Stalinism, which has entirely dissipated now that they've been delivered into corporatism.  I don't think the popularity of the whole zombie inspired genre over the past few years is a coincidence.  We're so plugged in that the entertainment segments of the market instinctively knows where we're at, and it's response is to provide simulated first person shooter training to legions of potential security guards.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Tonight is casseroles night in Canada (Ottawa last night, maybe tonight as well?) and it's not just in solidarity with the Quebec students, it can also be anti-Harper. And it's gone international, with marches scheduled in Denver, Colorado, Paris, and who knows where else. The FB page where this is being orchestrated says it will be ongoing until we get rid of Harper. Smile

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn-- I realize you may not agree with others about tactics. However, I resent the suggestion that because people are not doing, or at least not seen by you to be doing, what you want them to do that you can assume that is because they are fat cats (6 figure salaries), lazy, bought, gutless or otherwise. I'd go so far as to say I think it is presumptuous, even arrogant, to presume that you alone know the best strategy and that those who are not following it are being disloyal to the cause.

Ironically, the cause is actually doing much better than a few months ago in spite of the Con majority and media toadying from the most unrepentant reformatory hacks.

The CPC are down in the polls, articles about the labour movement have taken a more union-positive tone than I have seen in a generation, public policies that labour is promoting are being discussed, the government is being questioned for its direction and Conservative ideology is becoming less of a national religion. And the Cons are now falling to the number two position in the polls for the longest period since 2005.

All the main objectives of a national demonstration is being met without the downside risks of turning the public against us.

There is a tone to the discussion. There is a public mood that will express itself. It may be very positive for labour to support that public mood and encourage it rather than be seen to be trying to manipulate it or threaten it. Labour will move publicly more and more as it is empowered by public support.

I don't think this government is going to be toppled right now and the strategy as I see it looks logical over the next couple years. Building support before demonstrating what you have is not a bad idea.

Don't think that national labour organizations are doing nothing or selling you out.

Sean in Ottawa

I personally think that there needs to be more citizen-initiated activity-- Left Turn -- organize demonstrations if you want-- invite the CLC and see if they show up. You may be surprised.

I have been to events with the CLC where union activists were asked to not bring signs because they did not want to take away from the citizen's initiatives that they were. You might have more support from labour than you realize.

kropotkin1951

Sean both my wife and I share much of Left Turn's analysis.  I don't hear him blaming the hardworking union agents and support staff. i hear him talking about a structure that is top down and controlled by the bean counters [i.e. bureaucrats] in every union.  My wife is a business rep for a union and that was also one of my jobs during my working life. One can have a lot of respect for the union movement and its thousands of activists and still think Georgetti and his ilk are not only bad at their jobs but a hindrance to movement building.

By the way your description of hiding your union colours is a practice my wife has been railing against for decades. I believe she has spoken on the issue at more than one BC Fed convention.  No wonder Canadians think unions are irrelevant.

Sean in Ottawa

Unions like to show colours but at times when you go to an event organized by someone else you can take it over and that was what they were trying not to do-- support with people but not take it over. I respect that. They don't hide their colours at their own events

 

kropotkin1951

I mean as individuals. Flags and banners at other organizations rallies are not appropriate unless they are okay for all.  When union people do things in the community including standing with their neigbours I think they should literally wear their believes on their sleeves and other clothing areas. In BC the rallies organized by the Fed are always large and peaceful and have never gotten a single thing out of the neo-cons. At most rallies in BC there are banners from political parties sometimes including NDP associations as well as union locals.  The grass roots of the union movement needs to be proudly union when engaging with other activists.  I believe that is how you build bridges between the union movement and other social justice movements.

Sean in Ottawa

I agree Kropotkin

Brachina

I support protesting the austerity as much as anyone, but whoever sent the body parts to Tory HQ went too far.

Sean in Ottawa

Please let's not assume even in jest that this was a political protest.

We don't know any of that. There are several other possible motivations that have nothing to do with policy or ideology.

 

Vansterdam Kid

It doesn't sound political at all. According to Gawker (news source!), the guy was pretty mentally disturbed so it sounds like a psychopathic one off - not a political statement at all.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Just got this e-mail about a national day of action this Saturday against the Conservative's omnibus budget bill -- a series of ralies at Conservative MP offices being organized by Leadnow.ca.

[url=http://blackmark.leadnow.ca/]Love Democracy. Fight Back. Stand Against the Federal Budget Bill.[/url]

Quote:
Since the Harper Conservatives announced their Omnibus Budget Bill, more and more Canadians are rallying against a Bill that would put a black mark on our democracy. Now, we're writing to invite you to join a national day of action at Conservative MP offices, and supporting locations, across Canada this Saturday, June 2nd.

Even some traditional Conservative allies are now saying that the Harper Conservatives have gone too far. Last week, David Wilks, a Conservative MP, told a small group of his constituents that he, and many other Conservative MPs, were deeply troubled by the Budget Bill and that he would consider voting against it if 12 of his colleagues, enough to stop the bill, stood with him.[1] A day later, after receiving intense pressure from the Harper Conservatives, Wilks publicly reversed his position.

It's time to stand up. This Saturday, we'll gather at Conservative MP offices and support locations to bring Canadians together in opposition to a Bill that contains a sweeping agenda to remake Canadian society. And, we'll shine a spotlight on the Conservative MPs who can stop the bill, split it apart and start over by inviting Canadians to help them make better laws.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

The G&M weighs in: Activists gear up for multi-pronged protest against Tory budget bill

link:
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/activists-g...

ps: who turned off the hotlinking???

NDPP

Who Will Preserve the Past for Future Generations  -  by JL Granatstein

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/who-will-preserve-the-past-for...

"...the treatment of Library Archives Canada will hurt research and scholarship now and forever. It shows nothing, so much as contempt for the past and, regrettably, for the future as well."

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

NDPP

Walkom: Beware Politicians Preaching Restraint

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1210254--walkom-bewa...

"...In Ottawa the alibi of restraint has been taken to absurd lengths. Here Prime Mininster Stephen Harper's Conservatives have engaged in a series of precision bombing raids, blasting out specific parts of the federal bureaucracy that they fear might get in the way of the government or its friends. Why have they nuked the Inspector-General of The Canadian Security and Intelligence Service - an official whose job is to assure that the government knows what the spy agency is up to?

When Canadian Press reporter Bruce Cheadle first unearthed this particular tidbit, the official explanation was restraint. The real explanation, presumably, is to make sure that the government [ or the public] doesn't know too much about what CSIS is doing (particularly given its new mandate to use information gleaned through torture), That way, ministers can be provided with the cover of plausible deniability.

And as in Ontario, federal restraint means scaling back health and safety inspections in everything from the environment to meat-packing. The laws remain on the books. But if no one checks up on industry (which is being encouraged to self-regulate), such laws mean nothing..."

Michael Moriarity Michael Moriarity's picture

If it worked in Latvia, surely it will work here.

Ippurigakko

.... I wonder if it is part of Nunavut's high cost/price of food? Nutrition North Canada?

recently we have protest in all nunavut communities against high cost. And we will have another protest on Aboriginal Day and Nunavut Day.

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

This is shaping up to be the year of demonstrations like none other. Here's another:  

 July 1st, 2012

La Journee Nationale Pour Arreter Harper/National Stop Harper Day

onlinediscountanvils

kropotkin1951 wrote:

One can have a lot of respect for the union movement and its thousands of activists and still think Georgetti and his ilk are not only bad at their jobs but a hindrance to movement building.

 

[url=http://recomposition.info/2012/06/20/c-l-c-sells-out-students/]CLC sells out students![/url]

Quote:

Recent correspondence from Ken Georgetti (President of the Canada Labour Congress) and Michel Arsenault of the FTQ (Provincial Labour Central of Quebec) and various officers in the broader Anglophone Labour Movement sends a clear message: labour jurisdiction trumps labour solidarity. Georgetti and Arsenault believe that this is the time to “facilitate a settlement instead of fueling fires”.

Ken Georgetti says the “radical elements” are not to be supported in order to facilitate an agreement. To him an agreement in itself is more important than a victory for the students and workers of Quebec. Again his message is clear, class peace at all costs. He says the students are tired and have been fighting a long time as a reason why they should not be supported. This is pathetic.

Quote:

Let’s be clear, union leaders work for union members. They are not at the top of a chain of command and if the leadership want to use the unions as a tool to obstruct solidarity instead of facilitate it then the leadership should be ignored or discarded. The CLASSE did this through their mass assemblies and so can we.

Quote:

Solidarity is not an empty slogan, it is an act of defiance against a world dominated by greed and narrow self-interest. We need to ask Georgetti, Arsenault, and the rest of the labour movement: Which side are you on?

kropotkin1951

I have met Ken personally on many occasions.  He has never been a worker. His daddy was the head of the Steelworkers Local in Trail when he was growing up. He went to work for a few months after graduating and then got elected to a union position and rose very quickly up to the top jobs.  In committees he runs a really good railroad. He has been one of the people in the union movement that has hindered the fight back in every battle. He inherited a strong and vibrant union movement from his fathers generation but him and his ilk don't fight they just go backwards bit by bit year after year. He is always looking for labour peace no matter what it costs the membership in the long term.

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