Thursday, February 19, 2009

SUMMER OF CHANGE 2009 CANCELED!


i am sorry to report that the festival has been canceled due to lack of funds, but i am sure we will put something together in the future. Once capitalism collapses completely, and we, the wise ones who have been striving for communion with nature and sustainability, lead the way to the Age of Love, a festival will definitely be in order!
Peace and Love to All, may Mother Nature Forgive Us.

Friday, April 18, 2008

DID YOU KNOW THAT HARPER IS HEADING CANADA INTO A SUPERSTATE WITH THE U.S. AND MEXICO?

Watch out Canadians, on April 21-22, 2008, Harper is meeting up with Bush to plan Canada's demise; taking away our individual independence in order to empower the corporations that in turn fatten the pockets of the government. This is all done behind closed doors, so it is time to speak out against this, write a letter to our wonderful Prime Minister, tell him that we are not cool with this, that we don't want to become integrated with the United States or Mexico. LET'S GET ANGRY, THEN LET'S GET ACTIVE...STOP THE SUPERSTATE!
Email Stephen Harper at: Harper.S@parl.gc.ca and tell him that we are against deep integration with the U.S. and Mexico!
Not Counting Canadians: The Security and Prosperity Partnership and public opinion
From April 7–10, 2008, the Council of Canadians commissioned Environics Research Group to conduct a survey of Canadians to find out how they feel about the major SPP policy directions and initiatives, including North American regulatory convergence, energy integration with the United States, bulk water exports, and the adoption of U.S.-style security measures in Canada. We also asked whether such a wide-reaching trilateral agreement should be brought to Parliament for a debate and vote.
87% of Canadians agree that Canada should maintain the ability to set its own independent environmental, health and safety standards, even if this might reduce cross-border trade opportunities with the United States. And yet the Harper government is committed to an SPP policy of regulatory harmonization in the areas of consumer product safety, food and drugs, and the environment.
89% of Canadians agree that Canada should establish an energy policy that provides reliable supplies of oil, gas and electricity at stable prices and protects the environment, even if this means placing restrictions on exports and foreign ownership of Canadian supplies. And yet the Harper government is committed to a “market-based” policy of energy integration with the U.S. through the SPP’s North American Energy Working Group.
88% of Canadians agree that Canada should adopt a comprehensive national water policy that recognizes clean drinking water as a basic human right and also bans the bulk export of fresh water. And yet bulk water exports to the U.S. are on the table in SPP discussions.
48% of Canadians do not feel that Canada should harmonize its security policies with the United States, even if this affects our trading relationship. It was the only question on which Canadians were divided. And yet the 2008 Federal budget committed millions of extra dollars to SPP security initiatives anyway.
86% of Canadians agree that the Security and Prosperity Partnership agreement should be debated and submitted to a vote in Parliament. Yet four years later, the debate is nowhere to be seen.
Canadian preferences for policies that run counter to the key SPP priorities listed above show conclusively that Prime Minister Harper does not have a democratic mandate for pursuing this agenda in secretive trilateral talks like the upcoming North American leaders summit in New Orleans. The government must cease all further SPP talks and debate the agreement fully and openly before submitting it to Parliament for a vote.
For more information about the Council of Canadians, or its campaign against the SPP, please sign up to receive updates above or call us at 1-800-387-7177.

Friday, April 4, 2008

DEMAND OUR RIGHT TO A FREE INTERNET!


Of course, we all knew it was coming, Canada is making plans to monopolize the Internet, in turn, taking our freedom away from what is our source of knowledge and activism...Do you think they were going to let us get away with having this media outlet as a democratic one? If you haven't noticed, A LOT of our freedoms have been taking away since we have become buddy buddy with the United States. Have you thought about your vote in 2009 yet? Because the Conservatives and the Liberals have become a two-headed monster, planning on taking away our rights so that their cronies, and the American cronies can fill up their pockets with blood money, and they know we will simply follow behind them as good sheep do.
Take Action, visit this site and send a letter to advocate our right to a free internet!
http://www.canadians.org/action/2008/27-Mar-08.html

Thursday, April 3, 2008

A LIFE CHANGING MOVIE TO WATCH...


HERE IS THE DOWNLOAD OF THE MOVIE, FOUND ON THEIR WEBSITE. IT IS CALLED "ZEITGEIST", WATCH IT. WE ALSO ARE PLANNING TO SHOW IT SATURDAY EVENING AT THE SUMMER OF CHANGE 2009, SATURDAY JUNE 21, 2009, WEST KOOTENAYS, B.C.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

SAY YES TO CHANGE!


"The government's priorities are all wrong," said Adriane Carr, deputy leader of the Green Party of Canada, adding, "We need more music, arts and beauty in our lives, not more tanks, guns and war."
Talking about MUSIC, ART, AND BEAUTY...COME TO CANADA's MOST AWESOME ACTIVIST FESTIVAL, a ONE TIME ONLY FESTIVAL IN the WEST KOOTENAYS of BRITISH COLUMBIA, JUNE 21-22, 2009. SUMMER OF CHANGE 2009, a way to meet our fellow freedom fighters...LISTEN TO SOME AMAZING CANADIAN MUSIC LIVE ON STAGE; SAY NO TO WAR; LEARN HOW TO BE SUSTAINABLE; EAT VEGAN DELIGHTS; BASK IN THE SUN AND LEARN MORE ABOUT ENVIRONMENTAL AND SUSTAINABLE WAYS TO LIVE IN ORDER TO FIGHT THE MONEY MACHINE! SAY NO TO THE TAR SANDS; SAY YES TO NATURE FIRST; MEDITATE; YOGA; SPEAK OUT FOR YOUR RIGHTS; SAY NO TO OUR CORPORATE, MURDEROUS GOVERNMENT; SAY NO TO SEAL AND POLAR BEAR HUNTING; SAY NO TO GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD; SAY YES TO NATURAL BUILDING; SAY YES TO ORGANIC LOCAL EVERYTHING, AND GET ACTIVE!

A MUST READ ARTICLE!


Hello Canadians! Just to tell you that the Alberta Tar Sands are creating an international uproar, now when we travel, we might want to hide those Canadian Flags. The secret is out, we are DESTROYING THE EARTH SINGLE-HANDEDLY, WHERE IS THE ACTIVISM? WHERE IS THE UPROAR? WHY ARE WE NOT GETTING ANGRY? Read this article from the globe and mail, AND GET ANGRY!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

JOIN US IN CANADA'S FESTIVAL FOR CHANGE, JUNE 21-22, 2009


We at Summer of Change 2009, Canada's festival for Environmental and Political change and justice, are moving our headquarters across Canada to British Columbia, where we will be fundraising for the event, gathering more participants, raising awareness to our fellow Canadians, and continuing on working out the finer details of the festival. If you would like to join us in this great event, please email us at veganmountain@gmail.com. As a result, there will be a moment of peace on our side as we will be very busy. You can help us out by spreading the word, inviting others to join, handing out flyers etcetera. We have a year to prepare for this grand event, which some say could be Canada's Woodstock, except with even better information on how WE THE PEOPLE can help SAVE MOTHER EARTH, and bring peace and happy fulfillment at the same time. We are very excited to hear from you, because to UNITE is the best way to MAKE CHANGE!

If our Government is fine with poisoning us, isn't there something wrong?


Greenpeace is helping bring awareness to us Canadians about the poison you may be putting into your bodies. Remember, the stuff we eat gives us life, or helps to kill us.
Gordon Campbell declared "biohazard" on first annual GE Free Day
11 March 2008
Greenpeace is demanding mandatory labelling of GE foods and products. More than 40 countries already enforce this, including Russia, China and the UK.
VANCOUVER, Canada — Gordon Campbell is a biohazard to British Columbia for his continual refusal to label genetically engineered products, says Greenpeace, which today organized the province's first annual GE Free Day
Greenpeace volunteers, dressed in contamination suits and masks, "quarantined" the premier's office this morning with yellow hazard tape while holding signs that read "What's in Your Food? Demand the Right to Know!"
More than 70 per cent of all products on grocery store shelves in B.C. today are tainted by genetic engineering, yet the provincial government, under the direction of Premier Campbell, has yet to take action. Greenpeace is demanding mandatory labelling of all GE products and is advocating for citizens who have so far been denied their right to this information.
"British Columbians have waited seven years for Gordon Campbell to label genetically engineered foods, which even his own Provincial Health Officer has warned could pose serious risks to the environment and human health," said Josh Brandon, agriculture campaigner with Greenpeace. "Campbell's lack of policy direction is becoming a biohazard to the people of BC."
Mandatory labelling of GE products is already enforced in 40 other countries such as China, Germany, France, Russia and the UK, but Canada has yet to follow suit. Greenpeace created GE Free Day to raise public awareness and will continue to hold the provincial government to task until they commit to mandatory labelling.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Harper Trading Our Water to the Highest Bidder


Want to celebrate Water Day on March 22nd? Well, the Canadian and the U.S. Government have decided to secretly make their own trade deals, while backing out of International water protection policies, hmmm, I wonder why? Can we say MONEY over the welfare of Canadians? British Columbia and Alberta are already looking at shortages in the future, while New Brunswick has one of the poorest water qualities in North America...And yet, behind closed doors, our Government is selling it right under our apathetic noses...Here is some info, AND a chance to tell Harper that he is making some grave mistakes.
Canada needs a National Water Policy
-www.Canadians.org
National Water Policy postcard to send to the Prime Minister.
Water is vital to people’s health and livelihoods. In Canada, there is no national strategy to address urgent water issues and no federal leadership to conserve and protect our water. The Federal Water Policy is over 20 years old and badly outdated. There is a growing list of crises facing our freshwater including contamination, shortages and pressure to export water to the United States through pipelines and diversions.
It is time for the Government of Canada to implement a comprehensive National Water Policy.
Bulk water exports
Canada and the United States share interconnected water systems. The Great Lakes hold 20 per cent of the world’s fresh water, providing drinking water to 45 million people. The Great Lakes Annex agreement, signed in December 2005 by Ontario, Quebec and eight U.S. states, will allow diversions through permissive exceptions, while not guaranteeing a strong role for the government of Canada to preserve and protect its water supply. North Dakota is just one state that is facing water shortages and looking north for a new supply through diversions or interbasin transfers. Bulk water exports and diversions would leave Canada’s water vulnerable to environmental depletion and to international trade challenges that could permanently open the floodgates to parched U.S. states.
A new National Water Policy must ban the export of water, implement strict restrictions on diversions, and affirm the role of the federal government in international water issues.
In April 2007, the Council of Canadians obtained a leaked document produced by a Washington think tank, revealing that business and government leaders in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico are actively discussing bulk water exports. They met in Calgary on April 27, 2007 to discuss the issue in a closed-door meeting as part of a larger discussion on North American integration.
Water contamination
In 2000, seven people died in the community of Walkerton, Ontario when their drinking water was contaminated with E. coli virus. In 2001, more than 7,000 people were made sick during a three-month period by parasite-infected water in North Battleford, Saskatchewan. In 2005, people in Kasechewan, a Cree community in Ontario, were forced to evacuate their homes because of water contamination. According to the Government of Canada, municipalities issue hundreds of boil water advisories a year, most as the result of water contamination. Since December 16, 2005, 74 boil water advisories have been issued for First Nations communities in Canada. These numbers show an alarming trend.
A new National Water Policy must create national clean drinking water standards.
Privatization of drinking water
Communities across the country are in desperate need of money to pay for water pipes and filtration systems, which are now the responsibility of municipal governments. These governments are now looking to private investors to rebuild infrastructure through public-private-partnerships (P3s). Water is a public health and safety concern and is best managed, regulated and financed by public systems that are accountable to the community. When for-profit interests control drinking water, quality decreases and cost increases.
A new National Water Policy must commit to a federal government investment plan for municipalities.
The growing crisis of water shortages
Water is essential for all life, but it is a finite resource. Even in Canada, a water-rich nation, one quarter of Canadian municipalities have faced shortages and currently one third rely on groundwater — a resource we have dangerously little data — on to provide for daily needs. Water shortages in the Prairies cost $5 billion in economic damage in 2001 alone. At the same time, Canadians waste a tremendous amount of water every day.
A new National Water Policy must implement a comprehensive conservation strategy and invest in water resource research and monitoring.
Water and NAFTA
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) defines water as a “service” and an “investment,” leaving Canadian water vulnerable to thirsty foreign investors. Once Canada allows water to be withdrawn and transported to other countries for large-scale industrial purposes, foreign investors must be given the same “national treatment” as Canadian companies.
A new National Water Policy must ensure water does not become a tradable commodity in current and future trade deals.
Take Action for a National Water Policy
It is time for the federal government to develop a National Water Policy that affirms the right to water and protects Canadian water from commodification, diversion, bulk exports and privatization.
Getting Angry? Write our "Leader" a letter:
Contact information for Stephen Harper:

E-mail: pm@pm.gc.ca
Fax: 613-941-6900
Mail: Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2

Monday, March 17, 2008

SIGN PETITION FOR A FAIR CANADIAN FEDERAL GOVERNMENT DEBATE!

PLEASE SIGN PETITION SO WE CAN REPRESENT THE GREEN PARTY IN THE DEBATE AS WELL, WE NEED A FAIR REPRESENTATION IF WE ARE STILL STRIVING FOR DEMOCRACY.
sign here:http://www.demanddemocraticdebates.ca/petition.html

IT IS HAPPENING BEHIND CLOSED DOORS, WE NEED TO RISE UP


You may think this collage is offensive, but we are being run by an evil system right now and we are ignoring the fact that OUR GOVERNMENT is changing immigration policies so as to enslave people of colour and low economic status and to accept people of a certain skin colour and higher economic status. As well, OUR GOVERNMENT has taken OUT the word EQUALITY in our statute for women; has signed an agreement to allow the American Military free entry into Canada under American control; has agreed to put pipelines through our country so as to pump out crude oil to the States; is giving our water away freely to the US even though BC and Alberta are suffering from water shortage which will only increase as global warming gets worse; is part of the SPP with the US and Mexico which gives our Canadian Leader total control over all trade issues which greatly affects us and our future; is allowing the tar sands to continue even though our fellow brothers and sisters are dying of cancer and serious ailments as a result; is continuing a war that has killed many Canadians in the name of MONEY and POWER; is allowing the total destruction of our forests, our waterways, our air, our wildlife, our food, our soil, so as to gain the most monetary gain for themselves and the Corporates. WE ARE BEING RUN BY A SCARY TOTALITARIAN GOVERNMENT AND WE ARE HAPPILY PAYING OUR TAXES TO HELP FUND THE WAR, WE ARE HAPPILY CARRYING ON WITH OUR JOBS IN A SYSTEM THAT ENSLAVES US, KEEPS US AWAY FROM OUR CHILDREN, AND FEEDS THE CORPORATE CHEQUE-BOOKS, AND WE ARE HAPPILY DOING THESE THINGS WHILE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS AND MOTHER EARTH IS SUFFERING! IT IS ONLY GETTING WORSE WITH OUR SILENCE! Our government may not be committing an all out holocaust, but the deaths are mounting due to their actions, and our silence; like the Germans, we Canadians are being blinded by our seemingly safe stable lives, which can easily be taken away from us if we keep choosing silence over action and over compassion...Please don't let money and a stable job blind you from what is really going on in our country and in other countries where we are supporting death, illness, poverty and an unhappy way of life, your children will never forgive you...
Here is the latest on what our government is doing in order to keep our country in the hands of the wealthy white corporates:
The federal government has proposed sweeping changes to Canada's immigration policies that would give it greater selection powers to limit the number of new applicants.
The proposed changes, which the government says are aimed at reducing backlogs of immigration applications, are embedded in a budget-implementation bill tabled Friday in the House of Commons.
More than 800,000 prospective immigrants are on waiting lists.
The changes would:
•Allow the immigration minister to reject an applicant already deemed admissible by immigration officers.
•Allow the minister to set limits on what types of immigrants — "by category or otherwise" — can have their applications processed each year.
•Require an otherwise ineligible person who wants to immigrate on humanitarian grounds to already be in Canada for their application to be processed.
Why does the minister insist on closing Canada's doors to the newcomers we desperately need to fuel our labour and our population growth even though history shows this is absolutely the wrong approach?" McGuinty asked in the House Friday.
NDP MP Olivia Chow said Canada needs to increase the target number of immigrants into the country to one per cent of the population — or 330,000 people — in order to renew the country's workforce and drive its economy.
"Instead of allowing families into Canada, the Conservative government seems intent only to bring in massive numbers of temporary foreign workers who are vulnerable to mistreatment and abuse," added Chow, who is her party's immigration critic.

American Soldiers Allowed in Canada With Power Beyond Our Control!

THIS IS SCARY! IF THIS DOESN'T MAKE YOU WANT TO PAUSE YOUR VIDEO GAMES, YOUR TV PROGRAM, OR YOUR LAWN MOWER, THEN I DON'T KNOW WHAT WILL SCARE YOU CANADIANS! MAYBE A GUN TO THE HEAD BY AN AMERICAN SOLDIER ON CANADIAN SOIL WILL! READ ON...
NORTH AMERICAN MILITARY AGREEMENT SIGNED BY US AND CANADA
By Jim Kouri
Posted 1:00 AM Eastern
March 11, 2008
NewsWithViews.com
While Americans are being bombarded with large doses of presidential primary news coverage, the US entered into an agreement with its northern neighbor that may have an impact on future internal military action.
In a political move that received little if any attention by the American news media, the United States and Canada entered into a military agreement on February 14, 2008, allowing the armed forces from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation during a domestic civil emergency, even one that does not involve a cross-border crisis, according to a police commander involved in homeland security planning and implementation.
It is an initiative of the Bi-National Planning Group whose final report, issued in June 2006, called for the creation of a "Comprehensive Defense and Security Agreement," or a "continental approach" to Canada-US defense and security.
The law enforcement executive told Newswithviews.com that the agreement -- defined as a Civil Assistance Plan -- was not submitted to Congress for debate and approval, nor did Congress pass any law or treaty specifically authorizing this military agreement to combine the operations of the armed forces of the United States and Canada in the event of domestic civil disturbances ranging from violent storms, to health epidemics, to civil riots or terrorist attacks.
"This is a military plan that's designed to bypass the Posse Comitatus Act that traditionally prohibited the US military from operating within the borders of the United States. Not only will American soldiers be deployed at the discretion of whomever is sitting in the Oval Office, but foreign soldiers will also be deployed in American cities," warns Lt. Steven Rodgers, commander of the Nutley, NJ Police Department's detective bureau.
In Canada the agreement paving the way for the militaries of the US and Canada to cross each other's borders to fight domestic emergencies was not announced either by Prime Minister Harper's administration or the Canadian military. The agreement met with protests and demonstrations by Canadians opposed to such treaties with the US.
"It's kind of a trend when it comes to issues of Canada-US relations and contentious issues like military integration," claims Stuart Trew, a researcher with the Council of Canadians.
"We see that this government is reluctant to disclose information to Canadians that is readily available on American and Mexican websites," he said in a press statement.
The military Civil Assistance Plan is seen by critics as a further incremental step toward creating a North American armed forces available to be deployed in domestic North American emergency situations. According to the NORTHCOM press release, the plan "allows the military from one nation to support the armed forces of the other nation during a civil emergency."
The agreement was signed at US Army North headquarters, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, by US Air Force General Gene Renuart, commander of NORAD and US Northern Command, or USNORTHCOM, and by Canadian Air Force Lt. General Marc Dumais, commander of Canada Command.
"This document is a unique, bilateral military plan to align our respective national military plans to respond quickly to the other nation's requests for military support of civil authorities," Renuart said in a statement published on the USNORTHCOM website.
Lt. Gen. Dumais seconded Renuart's sentiments, stating, "The signing of this plan is an important symbol of the already strong working relationship between Canada Command and U.S. Northern Command."
"Our commands were created by our respective governments to respond to the defense and security challenges of the twenty-first century," he stressed, "and we both realize that these and other challenges are best met through cooperation between friends."
"It's hard to believe that Americans and Canadians will go along with this agreement," opines conservative strategist Michael Baker.
"That's why [there's] all this secrecy. Has anyone heard Clinton, Obama or McCain complain about this significant policy shift? All three of these presidential hopefuls are in the US Senate, yet not a peep from them about a foreign army being called to 'police' US neighborhoods under the guise of an 'emergency,'" he said.
The statement on the USNORTHCOM website emphasized that the plan recognizes the role of each nation's lead federal agency for emergency preparedness, which in the United States is the Department of Homeland Security and in Canada is Public Safety Canada.
The US Northern Command was established on October 1, 2002, as a military command tasked with anticipating and conducting homeland defense and civil support operations where US armed forces are used in domestic emergencies.
Meanwhile, the Canada Command was established on February 1, 2006, to focus on domestic operations and offer a single point of contact for all domestic and continental defense and securities partners.
In May 2007, President Bush took it upon himself to sign the National Security Presidential Directive 51 which is also known as Homeland Security Presidential Directive 20, authorizing the president to declare a national emergency and take over all functions of federal, state, local, territorial and tribal governments, without necessarily obtaining the approval of Congress to do so.
While Americans are being kept in the dark about this treaty, Canadian citizens are being totally ignored by their government. The extent of military integration called for by the BNP is unprecedented and has received absolutely no public debate in the House of Commons. If they wish to read about the details of this military agreement, Canadians must go to the Northern Command website to see any evidence of the new agreement.
"Once the Canadian people discover they can be [legally invaded] by US troops, they will take to the streets and protest and use the very effective weapon of civil disobedience. Canadians will not stand for occupation by a foreign army same as Americans won't," said conservative columnist and commentator Rachel Marsden.
"I'm surprised that the Canadian people haven't already displayed their opposition to such a treaty. Economics is one thing, but military use of force is quite another. We have our own police, security and military forces, thank you. We don't been Americans coming into Canada with weapons," she said. "And Americans don't need Canadian soldiers.

http://www.newswithviews.com/NWV-News/news38.htm

YOUR SILENCE IS MURDER!


These are the Canadians who have been murdered for Stephen Harper's interests, for Corporate interests, and for the interests of the United States government. We are committing murder by not speaking out, by keeping silent, by being apathetic, by supporting a system that supports war and murder. What happened to our compassion? Has money and our desire to have a stable job, blinded us from our brothers and sisters who are being murdered? We cannot let another young brother and sister die in the name of MONEY and GOVERNMENT GREED! Please, start a dialogue with those around you, we cannot support a system or government that is run by evil for evil of evil. The Canadian government that we have right now is not going to listen to us if we simply just go along with our safe, stable daily lives. We must fight this system that THREATENS OUR CHILDREN, OUR BROTHERS, OUR SISTERS, AND OUR MOTHER EARTH. ARE YOU GOING TO TRADE THAT ALL AWAY FOR YOUR SAFE STABLE LIFE? Let's start banding together NOW, and let us show them that WE ARE ABOVE THE SYSTEM. SUMMER OF CHANGE 2009 FESTIVAL, LET US UNITE!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

CANADIAN SOLDIER FOUND DEAD ON KANDAHAR BASE


WHAT ARE WE DOING? How can we all let this happen, why are we letting Canada be in a war? Do any of you want to be in this war? Did you know that young Canadian soldiers are committing suicide because we are allowing our government to be part of this disgusting war? Do you support murder? torture? WE ARE ALLOWING THIS TO HAPPEN, THIS IS CANADA, AND WE ARE LETTING OUR GOVERNMENT SEND OUR YOUNG CANADIAN MEN TO KILL PEOPLE OF ANOTHER COUNTRY! Soldiers are depressed, they do not want to be there, they are committing suicide, and we are keeping our mouths shut! DID YOU KNOW THAT PM HARPER IS SPENDING MOST OF OUR BUDGET ON WARFARE NOT SOCIAL WELFARE! PLEASE DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN! We are supporting MURDER! Please, vote AGAINST the conservative and liberal government, please email your MLAs and your MPs; please tell your family and friends about this...WAR IS REAL, we as Canadians must stand up to the Conservatives, DON'T LET THEM CONTINUE THIS ATROCITY! WE ARE TORTURING AND KILLING PEOPLE, WE ARE CAUSING OUR YOUNG MEN TO COMMIT SUICIDE! Please read the excerpt below and start getting active! We can do this, WE THE PEOPLE CAN STOP THIS WAR!
Canadian soldier found dead on Kandahar base
Soldier was from Quebec, but based in Manitoba
CBC News, March 11, 2008
A 22-year-old Canadian soldier was found dead in Afghanistan on Tuesday, but a top military commander said the death was not related to combat.
Bombardier Jérémie Ouellet, 22, was found dead Tuesday on the military base in Kandahar.
Brig.-Gen. Guy Laroche told reporters that Bombardier Jérémie Ouellet was found at 2:15 p.m. local time in the sleeping quarters at Kandahar airfield, the main NATO military base in southern Afghanistan.
Laroche said the Canadian military is investigating the circumstances surrounding Ouellet's death. He said more details would be provided once the investigation is complete.
"Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Bombardier Ouellet," Laroche said at a late-night briefing in Kandahar, 12 hours after Ouellet was found.
"Our primary focus at this time is to provide the best possible support to his family and colleagues."
Ouellet was from Matane, Que., and served with the 1st Regiment Royal Canadian Horse Artillery, which is based in Shilo, Man. He had only arrived in Afghanistan in the past few weeks.
The military police's major crimes unit will tackle the investigation. The unit, known as the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service, examines all incidents involving Canadian military personnel or property in Canada and abroad.
Ouellet was stationed at Kandahar airfield with about 10,000 other soldiers who are part of NATO's International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan.
The airfield, which resembles a miniature city with restaurants and recreation facilities, is the headquarters for the Canadian mission, but American, British and Dutch personnel also have a strong presence there. All the soldiers sleep in barracks or tents.
Only about half of the 2,500 Canadian soldiers deployed in Afghanistan live on the base.
80th Canadian soldier to die
Ouellet is the 80th Canadian soldier to die in Afghanistan since the mission began in 2002. A Canadian diplomat has also been killed.
Brig.-Gen. Guy Laroche tells reporters in Kandahar on Tuesday that the military is investigating the death of Bombardier Jérémie Ouellet. (Stephanie Levitz/Canadian Press)
The last time a Canadian soldier was killed on the Kandahar base was in March 2007, when Cpl. Kevin Megeney died after being shot in the chest. An investigation into that incident is still going on.
Other Canadian soldiers have died in non-combat situations in Afghanistan.
Master Cpl. Jeffery Scott Walsh was killed in a shooting accident while on patrol outside Kandahar in August 2006. Master Cpl. Robbie Fraser was charged with one count of manslaughter and one count of negligent performance of duty.
Maj. Raymond Ruckpaul was found dead of a gunshot wound in Kabul in August 2007. The military ruled Ruckpaul committed suicide, the only reported suicide involving a Canadian soldier in Afghanistan.
Another soldier, Pte. Frederic Couture, was reported to have committed suicide after returning home from Afghanistan with an amputated leg. Couture was found dead in his Montreal home in November.
Ouellet's death comes a week after Trooper Michael Hayakaze, 25, was killed by a roadside bomb. Hayakaze, who served with an Edmonton-based regiment, died only days before he was to wrap up his tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Canada's Budget Supports Military Spending, Not The Needs of Candians

Here is some information I thought all Canadians would be interested in, since our Prime Minister has decided to use most of our budget on Military Spending, obviously the needs of we, the people of Canada, are not as important as the desire to kill others for monetary gain.
More to the budget than meets the eye: slashing environment while boosting militarism
OTTAWA – Green Party leader Elizabeth May today held a press conference to review unheralded aspects of the 2008 budget.
“Although many may see the budget as yesterday’s news, the initial view of the Green Party that we could not support this budget was reinforced with further study. In fact, this budget is not ‘do-nothing’. It is a budget militarizing Canada, obsessed with terrorist threats, while ignoring climate threats.
“How many Canadians are aware the 2008 Harper budget does the following?
*increase military spending by $12 billion over the next 20 years;
*spend $26 million to introduce biometric data into the visas of foreign nationals;
*place a priority on the Security and Prosperity Partnership;
*ignore cleaning up the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River, but dedicate millions to guarding their perimeter?”
Ms. May said that the budget is a fraud in claims of increased environmental spending. In comparing total environment spending, as calculated by the Harper government, it would seem that spending had gone up, from $853 million (2005-2006) to $957 million (2008-2009). But in the section Ensuring a Cleaner, Healthier Environment, the largest amount of funding $300 million is for Atomic Energy of Canada Limited, for its new design reactor and for the legacy problems at the Chalk River facility.
“Another unspecified amount lies in the Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance for CO2 pipelines, which is a subsidy to the production of oil,” said Ms. May. “CO2 is used in enhanced recovery of oil. Even without discounting the $229 million for carbon capture and storage research, once one removes nuclear and big oil subsidies, the amount for the environment drop to $657 million.”
Ms. May also highlighted the Harper government’s abandonment of the Speech from the Throne commitment to enhanced science for a fresh water strategy. The Speech from the Throne stated that “A new water strategy will be implemented to help clean up our major lakes and oceans” yet the Harper government failed to include steps to address this commitment in the budget.
“Another deeply troubling facet of the budget is that it has opened national parks to privatization,” said Ms. May
“The aggressive militarization and privatization agenda is deeply disturbing and the Green Party will draw attention to the Harper government’s true colours at every opportunity.”

Killing Polar Bears For Sport Still Allowed in Canada!


Three conservation groups are suing the U.S. government for failing to meet a deadline on whether to list polar bears as a threatened species.
The Center for Biological Diversity, the Natural Resources Defence Council and Greenpeace are suing the government in Federal Court in San Francisco, the Associated Press reported Monday.
The groups contend sea ice loss is getting worse due to global warming.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has been reviewing the possibility of listing polar bears as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act since December 2006, when Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne proposed it amid concerns that climate change is melting Arctic sea ice.
Listing polar bears as threatened would require U.S. federal agencies to make sure anything they do does not jeopardize the bears or the Arctic sea ice where they live. That could affect oil and gas exploration, commercial shipping or even releases of pollution that might affect climate.
A decision was due Jan. 9, but two months later there's still no final word from the U.S. government.
The service's recommendation is being closely watched in Northern Canada, particularly in Nunavut, where polar bears are hunted by Americans and Canadians for sport, which can pay Inuit guides thousands of dollars per hunt.
The Nunavut government opposes listing polar bears as a threatened species over concerns it could potentially bar U.S. hunters from bringing the hides of the animals back home with them, severely limiting the appeal of the hunt.
Environment Minister John Baird has said Canada will not necessarily follow the lead of the U.S. should it decide to list polar bears as a threatened species.
Scientists have said it would be difficult for Canada to justify not giving polar bears a similar designation if the U.S. does so.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

CANADIANS ARE UNKNOWINGLY EATING TOXIC FOOD


Please, start looking for a health food store, an organic grocery store, and local organic farmers or CSAs in your neighbourhood, it will not only save your health, but the health of our next generation and the life of our planet, we call Mother Earth.
An international report on GE crop contamination has shown multinational companies such as Bayer and Monsanto are turning a blind eye to cases of GE contamination on a global scale, and British Columbians are paying the price with their health. Greenpeace International and GeneWatch UK issued the report today, entitled GM Contamination Register Report 2007, which documents 10 incidents of GE contamination in Canada. These include an illegal variety of GE rice discovered by Greenpeace in supermarkets in both Vancouver and Montreal.
The report also exposes 39 new instances of crop contamination in 23 countries over the past year. Most of the contamination involved such staple crops as rice and corn, but also included soy, cotton, canola, papaya and fish. Over the past 10 years, the GM Contamination Register (www.gmcontaminationregister.org) has recorded 216 incidents of contamination in 57 countries.
"Here in Canada, there is very little government testing for unauthorized and unwanted contamination, as we saw last year when consumers had to wait for independent testing by Greenpeace to find out they had been exposed to a variety of illegally genetically engineered rice," said Greenpeace Agriculture Campaigner Josh Brandon.
thank you to Greenpeace for putting up the fight!

SUMMER OF CHANGE 2009; ENDING THE INJUSTICE


Canadians from across the country have been emailing us, wanting to volunteer, speak, play music and set up their own booths on the issue that they are passionate about, which is absolutely amazing. The one thing that makes me smile these days is the fact, and it is a fact, that there are a lot of Canadians who do know about the injustices that are happening in our country, and they want to do something about it. That is why we are having this festival in the first place, because it can be very hard to resurface from all the political injustices, and believe that change can happen. CHANGE CAN HAPPEN, and it happens when disgruntled Canadians UNITE in their passion for positive change in a non-violent manner, and SHARE their knowledge with other Canadians that are like-minded or just plain curious. Vegan Mountain is moving to the West Kootenays this spring, and with our volunteers, we are going to be kick starting our plans for being sustainable and off-grid; one of the biggest political moves one can make in this oil and money hungry system. We are about unity, not ladder-climbing, money-laundering, or material wealth. We do believe in equality, with all species: animal, human, plant and other; this is not a dream it can be a reality, and as we have found out, many Canadians share the same belief, it is just that the corporate-paid media do not want us to know that we exist! So, if you are reading this, and are thinking that you also want to join us, maybe as a volunteer, a participant, a speaker, a musician, a booth owner, an artist or something else that you think Summer of Change 2009 should include, then email us at veganmountain@gmail.com, where the grassroots-at-heart meet.

WHO CARES ABOUT OUR CHILDREN ANYWAY?


Just thought you might want to know how our failing childcare system and the present Conservative government go together!
OTTAWA – The Green Party is celebrating International Women’s Day and calling for a renewed focus on achieving equality for women in Canada.
“The situation for women has improved immensely over the past century, but there is much work to be done. Women still earn only about 70 percent of what men take home,” said Green Party leader Elizabeth May. “Unfortunately, the situation has been made worse by the regressive actions of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who has done more damage to issues important to women in two years than many of us thought possible. Last year, Canada slipped from 14th to 18th place in terms of women’s equality.”
Ms. May noted that the Harper government has eroded progress towards women’s rights in Canada by eliminating the word “equality” from the mandate of Status of Women Canada, prohibited advocacy activities of women’s organization funded by Status of Women and canceled the Court Challenges program, which was accessible to promote Charter rights. The Harper government has also killed federal-provincial child care agreements and failed to create new child care spaces.
“The Green Party considers it crucial to implement the recommendations of the Federal Pay Equity Task force, something the Conservative government has failed to do,” she said. “We also recognize that women’s access to education and participation in the workforce is necessary to achieve equality. But equity will never become reality unless we can ensure adequate maternity benefits and full access to affordable childcare, among other measures.”

Friday, March 7, 2008

Canada's Present Sees Water Shortage and Environmental Break-Down


So, I really wanted to post something positive, and I will, I promise! But, with the new report in on Canada's environmental future, which includes drought and a SHORTAGE OF WATER, well, I wasn't feeling so happy; especially since we are still giving away our natural resources freely in our dreaded NAFTA agreement and our involvement in SPP, the Security and Prosperity Partenership with the US and Mexico. Yup, my worst nightmares are coming true, and the scary thing is that this environmental nightmare is happening NOW, yes, in the present; we are not talking about the future, because that is even bleaker if we don't start making CHANGES. Please, this is my plea to my fellow Canadians, to my friends, to my family, PLEASE MAKE CHANGES. Let us put our environment first, let's get sustainable, let's demand that our government does the same, we have to do this, we have to change, we have to drive less, we have to conserve water, we have to get solar and wind power, we have to buy less, we have to buy local organic products, we have to make sacrifices. Money and the eight hour job does not promise us happiness; health and love for our fellow humans and wildlife does. We may think everything is fine because our health is good, and our job is making us money, but with a drinking shortage, toxic air conditions, an agricultural break down (yup, our food), severe storms and oil shortages hitting Canada these days, we won't be happy for long unless we make serious changes. I am up for it, what about you?!
Here is some info on the report from cbc:
Canada can expect to see more devastating storms and extreme weather because of climate change, a yet-to-be released federal report concludes.
The report, prepared by more than 100 Canadian scientists on behalf of Canada's Department of Natural Resources, will be made public soon, but CBC News has learned some of the details it contains from several people involved in compiling the report.
Ice storms, like the 1998 storm that hit Eastern Canada, will be more frequent in Canada's future.
(Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)
The report focuses on the impact climate change will have on the country, in terms of the weather it will generate, and the effects on areas like infrastructure, energy production and drinking water.
The report, the first of its kind done for the federal government in 10 years, says Canada can expect more ice storms, torrential downpours, floods, droughts and landslides, as well more days of extreme heat and smog.
The report says the increase of extreme weather has already begun, and will only get worse.
"The models predict as we go into the future that those events will be more frequent than they have been in the recent past," said Gordon McBean, a geography professor at the University of Western Ontario in London.
McBean was one of the scientists involved in the report.
He said the extreme weather will mean more insurance claims from damaged homes and property, while the country's roads and bridges will take a beating. Coastlines in some communities will erode more rapidly than usual.
Canada will have to adapt, McBean said.
"What's really important is that as we invest in rebuilding that infrastructure, we build it for the climate of the future, not the climate of the past."
In Iqaluit, Nunavut, subdivisions are already being built to withstand more rain in areas that were once considered Arctic desert, but are now seeing warmer weather.
Drinking water shortage
While some communities will be coping with more rain, others may endure droughts lasting a decade or more. Western Canada, in particular, could face short winters and long, dry summers.
Water levels in rivers in Alberta and British Columbia are already dropping significantly, as are the levels of the Great Lakes.
The result could be a shortage of drinking water, the report says.
It also warns that industries that rely on water — oil, gas, hydroelectricity, agriculture, even salmon fishing — will also suffer, while there could be an increase in forest fires.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

ARE YOU HELPING THE DEVIL?


Hope you know where your food and new clothing is coming from, because if you don't you may be contributing to child labour; now those new slim fit jeans don't look so sexy...
Monsanto dominates the global seed industry and churns out $1 billion a year in profit. Investors are so enamored of its market power and profitability that they've bid up its share price by nearly 1500 percent since 2004.
So why does Monsanto rely on farms that use child labor to cultivate its genetically modified cotton seeds in India? From Forbes Magazine:
Yothi Ramulla Naga is 4 feet tall. From sunup to sundown she is hunched over in the fields of a cottonseed farm in southern India, earning 20 cents an hour. Farmers in the Uyyalawada region process high-tech cottonseeds genetically engineered to contain a natural pesticide, on behalf of U.S. agriculture giant Monsanto. To get the seeds to breed true the farmers have to cross-pollinate the plants, a laborious task that keeps a peak of a dozen workers busy for several months on just one acre. And to make a profit the farmers have to use cheap labor. That means using kids like Jyothi, who says she's 15 but looks no older than 12.
It gets worse. To keep these monocropped cottonseed fields free of pests, farmers lean heavily on pesticides. As Forbes points out, kids' small hands are better than adults' at for doing tedious work with seeds; but "their bodies are no better at withstanding the poisons." Here we go:
At least once a week ... farmers spray the fields with pesticides like Nuvacron, banned by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and endosulfan, methomyl and Metasystox, considered by the EPA to be highly toxic. [An NGO representative] ticks off the effects of overexposure: diarrhea, nausea, difficulty in breathing, convulsions, headaches and depression.
As is the case with chocolate -- another industry wherein huge corporations rely on kid workers in pesticide-laden fields -- the problem of child labor in India's cottonseed fields comes down to price. Monsanto doesn't want the bad publicity associated with child labor, so it pressures the farmers who grow its seeds to use only adults in the field.
But it doesn't pay them enough to be profitable without using the cheapest, most compliant labor possible -- and that means kids, Forbes reports.
The article also makes an excellent connection between what the way the GMO seed giants operate in India and the way giant poultry producers like Tyson do business here:
Monsanto's competitors, the Swiss Syngenta and the German Bayer, also contract with farmers in India to produce seed. For all three the arrangement is like the one that governs chicken production in the U.S., with a giant corporation supplying inputs to a small farmer and then picking up the output at harvest time.
Thank you to Forbes and the COC for this article, and let us unite and help take this world from the greedy and let's preserve what little peace and love for all humans, creatures and wildlife we have left, it is not too late!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

PLEASE HELP UNTIE THE NOOSE AROUND CANADA'S NECK!


Please help end Canada's slavery to the United States by saying NO TO NAFTA. Just simply cut and paste this sample letter and send it to Barack Obama by going to the “Obama ‘08” website at http://my.barackobama.com/page/s/contact2 or by e-mailing info@barackobama.com. To send your message to Hillary Clinton, go to the “Hillary for President” website at http://www.hillaryclinton.com/help/contact/ or e-mail comments@hillaryclinton.com. If you go to their websites, it only takes a few moments to fill in the required fields and you can leave the “state” field empty.
Sample letter:

Dear Senator Obama / Clinton,

I join with the Council of Canadians in thanking you for your recent statements in support of the renegotiation or abrogation of NAFTA.
As reported in one of our national newspapers, the Globe and Mail, “Both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton would withdraw the United States from the North American Free Trade Agreement within six months after becoming president, unless the agreement were completely renegotiated...Ms. Clinton said she would demand new environmental and labour provisions, and a new dispute-resolution mechanism, and would eliminate the right of outsiders to sue the United States for enacting measures to protect jobs."
While your critics have stated that your comments were not genuine, we trust that you have made a sincere commitment to address the failings of NAFTA if you were to become president on January 20, 2009.
While we have raised the same criticisms as you about NAFTA with our prime minister, he has disregarded our concerns. In fact, when he was last in the United States he told an audience in New York City that, “Now I know NAFTA has become somewhat of a whipping boy to some in the United States, just as it is to some in Mexico and even to some in Canada. But the fact is that NAFTA has been unequivocally good for all of our countries. In spite of the naysayers and the doomsdayers, I could recite a litany of economic statistics to demonstrate its success – which is why virtually nobody, not even the critics, dares suggest to rip it up."
Your comments this week suggest that our prime minister might want to reconsider his statement to your citizenry.
Our prime minister has suggested that if you were to open NAFTA to renegotiation, he would have his own list of concessions to discuss. While he has not shared this list with the Canadian public, we hope that it would include at least these two areas:

WATER: In June 2007, our House of Commons voted 134 to 108 to open NAFTA talks to make sure bulk water exports are excluded. This motion called for a formal letter of agreement with the United States and Mexico to make sure bulk water will never be defined as a good or service under NAFTA.

ENERGY: Canada exported 1.86 million barrels of oil a day to your country in 2007. That same year, we had to import 851,000 barrels of oil per day for our own needs from countries such as Algeria, Saudi Arabia and Iraq. It is doubtless time that our prime minister considers our own energy security as much as your country recognizes the importance of its own energy needs.

We would also like to draw special attention to recent comments about the Security and Prosperity Partnership summits. Senator Obama wrote in the Dallas Morning News, "Starting my first year in office, I will convene annual meetings with Mr. Calderon and the prime minister of Canada. Unlike similar summits under President Bush, these will be conducted with a level of transparency that represents the close ties among our three countries. We will seek the active and open involvement of citizens, labor, the private sector and non-governmental organizations in setting the agenda and making progress."
We have repeatedly made the demand to our prime minister that the Security and Prosperity Partnership should be brought before the legislatures of all three countries involved, and subject to the democratic scrutiny of public hearings, debate and votes. Our prime minister has rejected these calls – as well as demands that the SPP process be opened to civil society - and has insisted on singularly pursuing the input of the North American Competitiveness Council, an exclusive corporate-only advisory board.
In closing, you should also know that Canadians overwhelmingly hope that a Democrat will win the White House. On January 7, Canadian Press reported that, "A new (Canadian Press/ Harris Decima) poll suggests Canadians would root en masse for whichever leading Democrat winds up facing the Republicans in this year’s U.S. presidential election...The survey, provided exclusively to The Canadian Press, said 49 per cent of Canadians expressed a fondness for the Democrats while only 12 per cent did the same for Republicans."
The Council of Canadians believes that public debate is at the heart of any democracy, and we are dismayed that our prime minister seems to rule debate on NAFTA and the SPP as out of order. We believe that change and renewal are key aspects of any thriving nation, and as such reject our prime minister’s statements that the 15-year old NAFTA is somehow sacrosanct and should never be renegotiated for the betterment of the people, environment and democracies of Canada, the United States, and Mexico.
Again, we thank you for your stated commitments on NAFTA and the SPP that suggest to us that change is possible.

Sincerely,

Thursday, February 28, 2008

WORKING A HARD EIGHT-HOUR DAY FOR THE DEVIL


I never really cared about the budget, until I learned where all that money is going, yup, to the Corporates once again. Isn't it time to stop the suffering that these polluting organizations unleash onto us, the innocent bystanders. It is us and our poor helpless Mother Earth that are the victims of this quest for money and power that our government continues to exploit for their own money-hungry purposes. While they are drinking their bottled water, we will be wading in red frothing oceans and eating diseased, pus-filled animals, and pesticide induced vegetables. I say we put that budget money (which is once again our hard earned cash!) into something that will benefit US AND MOTHER EARTH, now that is progress!
OTTAWA - The Green Party is rejecting the Conservative budget as a budget with no vision that fails to provide responsible leadership on the economy or the environment.
"I look at this Conservative budget", said Green Party deputy leader Adriane Carr, "and I see a big group of ostriches with their heads stuck in the tar sands."
"There's no vision," said Carr. "While other countries are growing strong, sustainable economies based on conserving energy and developing clean renewable energy, the Conservatives are entrenching our reliance on fossil fuels."
Carr noted that the single biggest initiative regarding global warming in this budget allocates $250 million to sequester carbon from coal-fired electricity.
"The Conservatives are taking Canada backwards instead of forward," said Carr.
"The nuclear industry is not the way to go, either," said Carr. 'This budget puts $300 million in new nuclear technology. Given the long-term health, environmental and international security problems related to nuclear energy, our government should invest instead in Canada's vast solar, wind, tidal and geothermal resources," stated Carr.
Ms. Carr said that a carbon tax, coupled with green tax-shifting, is critical to both addressing climate change and developing clean, renewable energy. Just yesterday, the new David Suzuki Foundation report, co-authored with economist Mark Jaccard, concluded that a carbon tax will not only help solve the climate crisis but will represent a significant opportunity for Canadians to save on taxes and will keep our economy strong."

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

MAD COW NIGHTMARE RESURFACES!

Need another reason to get off the fleshy stuff, we call animal meat, well, read on...
Massive Beef Recall Follows Mad Cow Scare
USDA orders recall of 143 million pounds of frozen beef
By Mark Huffman
ConsumerAffairs.Com
February 17, 2008
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is recalling 143 million pounds of frozen beef in the wake of a video showing so-called downer cattle being prepared for slaughter at a California plant. The recall includes beef products produced after February 1, 2006 at the Westland/Hallmark Meat Co. in Chino.
A consumer group said the recall was the result of a "terrible failure" by the USDA and said consumers are losing confidence in the safety of the American food supply.
The release of the video earlier this month by the Humane Society of the U.S. triggered a USDA investigation of the plant and an immediate suspension of production.
Of particular concern is the fact the plant has been a major supplier of meat to the federal school lunch program.
The recall was announced over the weekend after USDA investigators concluded the downer cattle were slaughtered, along with healthy cattle. Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer says investigators uncovered evidence the plant violate numerous health regulations. The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) noted that there have been more than 20 beef recalls in the last 20 months.
"This recall is the result of a terrible failure of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s mandate since 1906 to ensure that sick animals are not slaughtered for human food. Once again, USDA is in reactive mode—taking steps to protect the public long after a highly publicized animal welfare scandal," said CSPI Food Safety Director Caroline Smith DeWaal. The slaughter of downer cattle set off alarm bells among investigators because not being able to walk is one of the symptoms of bovine spongiform encephalopathy, otherwise known as Mad Cow Disease.
There are strict rules that are supposed to keep meat from infected cows out of cattle feed – much less the human food supply. In addition, Schafer says the fact the cows weren't inspected raises all sorts of other alarming possibilities, including foodborne pathogens such as E. coli O157:H7 and Salmonella. "Along with all Americans who watched the Humane Society's disturbing videos, we are concerned with the mistreatment of animals at Westland Meat Co. We are writing today because of urgent concerns this incident raises about food safety in the National School Lunch Program and the implications for our children's health and well-being," the lawmakers wrote in their letter. Despite these steps by the USDA, the lawmakers cited serious concerns about the overall effectiveness of the federal government's effort to ensure the safety of meat on the school food supply. To date, no independent investigation has been launched into the safety of the schools' meat supply.

Unite With Fort Chipewyan Against Corruption by Our Government!

Dear Friends and Allies,
Please join with members of Fort Chipewyan this Saturday to demand justice for their community.
Out of control tarsands development is having disastrous impacts on the environment and health of people throughout Alberta. Increasing numbers of the small aboriginal community of Fort Chipewyan (downstream from the Alberta Tar Sands) are being diagnosed and dying from rare cancers and other auto-immune diseases. A recent water study confirmed that the water in Fort Chipewyan had increased levels of arsenic, mercury and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and was not safe for consumption, particularly in the fish eaten by local residents.
The study further supports the Mikisew Cree's recent call for a moratorium on tar sands development.
But as stated by Councillor Russell Kaskamin of the Mikisew Cree First Nation, "The Federal and Provincial governments are continuing to issue approvals for projects despite all of the uncertainties with the true environmental effects of oilsands development. This analysis suggests that we can no longer continue to exercise our rights to harvest foods due to the uncertainty of potential health risks."
Demand Justice for Fort Chipewyan!!!
Rally at the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton
March 1st, 1:00 pm
And Vigil at Parliament Hill in Ottawa
March 1st, 7:00pm
And, if you can’t make it either of these events, you can still take action by signing a letter to both the Alberta Government and Canadian Government to demand that they take action. Please sign on here.
It is time to demand justice for the Mikisew Cree and the residents of Fort Chipewyan.
Contact: George Poitras at george.poitras@shawbiz.ca, Lindsey Telfer at Lindsay@sierraclub.org or Mike at mhudema@greenpeace.org for more information about the Edmonton action, or Jessie at jessie@polarisinstitute.org for more information about the action in Ottawa.
And, if you haven’t done so already please join 37 Alberta based organizations, 31 national and international groups, prominent individuals like Stephen Lewis, Dr. David Schindler and Reverend Bill Phipps and over 2000 individuals who have signed on to a pledge stating NO NEW APPROVALS on tar sands development!
Jessie Kalman
Tar Sands Watch Campaigner
Polaris Institute
jessie@polarisinstitute.org
(613) 237-1717 ext. 106
mobile (613) 698-8222
www.tarsandswatch.org

Monday, February 25, 2008

The Canadian Government Caught in Seal Pup Slaughter!


This has been an extremely distressing day: First Stephane Dion wimps out on us and passively lets Stephen Harper continue the war on the Afghanistan people to 2011 and beyond, a disgusting slaughter on its own...But hey, if we are going to slaughter humans, why not kill seal pups too, and while you are at it, you might as well kill off the poor, the prisoners, the naysayers, the first born child of every family...Wait this sounds very familiar....I thought you might want to know that the Canadian government no longer gives a sh*t about us, nor anything living thing on this earth, they just want too fill their pockets with money, their fat cat friends' pockets with money and laugh at us as we are crying for JUSTICE! LET US UNITE! WE HAVE TO, IT IS GOING TO BE TOO LATE, WE MUST FIGHT NO MATTER WHAT! Come on Canadians let's kick these fat cats out, let's stop putting our cash into their fat pockets, lets get sustainable, lets email their asses off, and lets spread the word!
Here is an excerpt on the inhumane seal hunt, and also check out another article on Canadian Press, our government is absolutely and totally corrupt. Sign the petition here
Article By Rebecca Aldworth (Humane Society International)
This spring marks a macabre anniversary for me: It is the tenth year I have observed commercial seal hunting in Canada at close range. In that decade, I’ve seen things that still haunt me every day and night. But nothing could have prepared me for what I just witnessed in Nova Scotia.
Two weeks ago, the government of Nova Scotia and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans opened a protected nature reserve to commercial seal hunters. Fishermen were authorized to club more than 2,000 baby grey seals [PDF] to death on Hay Island, a part of the protected Scaterie Island Wilderness Area off Cape Breton.
I and my colleagues from Humane Society International and the Humane Society of the United States—along with a representative from the Atlantic Canadian Anti-Sealing Coalition—traveled to the site of the massacre by ZodiacTM.
Before the hunters arrived, Hay Island was a stunning, wild, and windswept vista. A tiny plot of land off the larger Scaterie Island, it faces directly onto the Atlantic Ocean. Its stone beaches surround grassy, snow-covered hills—the habitat of grey seal mothers and their pups.
Everywhere across the island, seal pups nursed from their mothers, their soft calls drowned out by the sounds of the ocean waves crashing onto the rocky shores in the distance. Some of the newborn pups were covered in white fur; others, a few days older, had already moulted their white coats. The moulted pups have the most valuable skins, and the hunters meant to kill them.
On the opening day of the seal hunt, we arrived at Hay Island after the killing had already begun. We climbed out of our ZodiacTM onto the rocky beach, facing a high ridge beyond which we could not see. As we clambered over it, we noticed a steel pail in which sealers had left wooden bats covered in blood—an ominous indicator of what lay ahead. Directly behind the bloody pail lay a newborn whitecoat seal pup, crying pitifully. She was terrified and bewildered, unable to comprehend the violence happening around her. Her calls struck a chord deep within me. There is something about the misery of a newborn creature, confronted with violence even adult humans cannot stand to watch, that defines exactly why commercial seal hunting must end.
As I looked up, it took a full minute for me to understand what I was seeing in front of me. Hunters had herded moulted pups, newborn seals, and mothers together into groups. They bashed the moulted pups with their crude wooden bats, slicing them open with box cutters. Inches away, the mothers tried to put themselves between their babies and the sealers, but they were no match for these men armed with wooden bats.
“Come here, little buddy, I have something for you,” yelled out one sealer as he ran directly at a terrified pup huddling in a crevice beside a rock. Without a second of hesitation, the sealer raised his bloody bat and struck the seal pup. The repeated thuds of the clubs against the skulls of the grey seal pups sounded out across the island, constant and sickening.
Soon, the grass and snow of Hay Island was covered in vast pools of blood. The surviving newborn pups were moving miserably through the carnage, red blood smeared across their white fur. Bloody trails led away from the killing sites to the areas where dead pups were being winched onto a sealing boat stationed just off the island.
I saw my horror at the scene reflected in the some of the faces of the government officials there. No one could watch this brutality and remain unaffected. Even the sealers seemed to realize there was something wrong with what they were doing; they would deliberately stand in front of our cameras to prevent us from filming as they smashed in the skulls of the baby seals.
I moved through the killing fields, apologizing to the surviving pups, over and over again. The site of their home, their sanctuary, being turned into an open air slaughterhouse by these ruthless invaders was too much to bear. What had once been one of Nova Scotia’s wilderness treasures had been destroyed by the commercial sealing industry.
It is unthinkable that the Canadian government is allowing grey seals to be slaughtered commercially. By 1949, commercial hunting had almost wiped out this population, and it has only begun to recover to any real extent in recent years. While the Department of Fisheries and Oceans has attempted to portray this recovery as a population increase, it is hard for any population not to increase when it is starting at close to zero.
Fishermen have long scapegoated grey seals for the impact of destructive commercial fishing methods on fish stocks. They say that grey seals are preventing fish stocks from recovering, despite the fact that there is not a shred of evidence anywhere in the world that this is the case. But despite this, the Canadian government allows fishermen to promote the myth that killing grey seals will somehow help the ecosystem to recover. And that is exactly how the Canadian government and the government of Nova Scotia have tried to sell this devastating slaughter to the public.
But it won’t work. We will hold the government of Nova Scotia and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans accountable for their behaviour. The footage we filmed is being provided to governments around the world to show the depths to which the Canadian government will sink to appease the fishing industry lobby. We will not forget the suffering of the grey seals. And the horrible deaths of these seal pups over the past two weeks will not be in vain.
A local supporter from Cape Breton remarked to me after our first day of filming the grey seal slaughter, “I’ve always thought the grey seal hunt would end the harp seal hunt in Canada.” She believes the cruelty of this slaughter, which occurs in areas people can see it, will wake up Atlantic Canadians to the reasons why all commercial seal hunting must end.
She may well be right.
As we prepare to depart for the much larger harp seal hunt just a few weeks from now, I hold that thought in my mind.
The end is coming for the commercial sealing industry in Canada. Allowing the grey seal slaughter to happen in the Hay Island sanctuary was the biggest mistake the Canadian government could have made. They will live to regret it.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Another reason to END THE WAR!

I have just come out of the flu, feeling stronger than ever to fight for peace and justice. While in bed, i got the chance to read up on the environmental catastrophes that human beings, especially the government of Canada, have, and still are, to and even greater degree causing on our country. It is disgusting that we are in a war with a Middle Eastern country that we are treating like a colony; while our own country is failing in democracy itself. We have been rendered voiceless by this government that would rather spend 7 billion in a war against another country, rather than clean up its own act in its own land and sea. Our environment and its inhabitants are suffering immensely, and it is just getting worse. We need to take a stand NOW, it will be too late if we wait for this government to take action. WE MUST TAKE ACTION. I know, I have a job and a family too, that is no excuse, actually, it gives us an even greater reason to fight for environmental welfare, animal welfare, clean air, and clean water. We have to stop this war now, it is not in anyones interest except for the pockets of the fat cats in government and the armament-building corporations. We are in this war so as to make money for those who build military weapons and aircraft, for the Bush administration and all his fat cats, and for the Canadian government's own pockets. This is about making money for those in power, it has NOTHING TO DO WITH THE WELFARE OF AFGHANS! We could be spending our tax dollars on our own desperate needs...We have so much clean up to do in our own country; there are piles upon piles of chemical wastelands waiting to be cleaned up, there are thousand of Canadians deserving compensation for becoming ill due to coporate industrial practices; there are thousand of small farmers who are in great need of subsidies; there are species who are in dire need for land space and healthy habitats...and on and on and on...LET'S GET OUT OF AFGHANISTAN AND START PUTTING OUR TAX DOLLARS WHERE WE CANADIANS NEED IT! Email our leaders (email contacts can be found in previous blog entries), vote for a GREEN leader, talk to those around you, and LET'S UNITE!
I found this article on CBC.ca for uptodate catastrophes in Afghanistan...
Canada's top soldier urged Parliament to come to a quick decision on the country's role in Afghanistan, warning that lengthy debate may put soldiers increasingly at risk as the Taliban take advantage of the uncertainty.
Gen. Rick Hillier said on Friday that the Taliban are watching Canada's debate on the Afghan mission and may increase attacks on the country's soldiers if they perceive weakness.
"We are, in the eyes of the Taliban, in a window of extreme vulnerability, and the longer we go without that clarity, with the issue in doubt, the more the Taliban will target us as a perceived weak link," Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Rick Hillier said Friday.
Speaking at a meeting of the Conference of Defence Associations, a military advocacy group, Hillier referred to recent attacks in Afghanistan.
A spate of suicide bombings hit southern Afghanistan earlier this week, including one attack that targeted a Canadian convoy, slightly wounding three soldiers.
Hillier wouldn't definitively say the suicide bombings were linked to political debate in Canada.
But he warned that if the Taliban sense weakness, they may try to take advantage of it and attack Canadian soldiers to prevent a cohesive mission.
The longer the Canadian Forces go without clarity about the mission, the more difficult it will be to protect the soldiers, he told reporters after the speech.
Ottawa is in the midst of deciding what form Canada's military presence should take past its current end-date of February 2009.
While debate is necessary, Hillier said, there has to be a decision at the end of it.
Debate unavoidable, Dion reiterates
Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion repeated his assertion Friday that debate is unavoidable.
"I think the Taliban want to kill our soldiers anyway. It's a dangerous mission, I know," Dion told reporters in Winnipeg.
"We are a pluralist democracy and we're fighting to be sure that Afghanistan too, one day, will be a pluralist democracy where people may debate without being in danger of their lives."
Dion is not making any commitment to back a revised Conservative motion on Afghanistan, a proposal intended to bridge the gap between the government and the opposition Liberals.
But he said the government has moved toward the Liberal position and much progress has been made.
"Our brave men and women in uniform are risking their lives, it's true, which is why I would prefer not to have an election with that as a trigger," he said.
NATO general expects allies to offer troops
The new motion, which Harper revealed before the same group Hillier addressed, calls for the mission to be renewed past 2009 but with a focus on reconstruction and training of Afghan troops, and for all Canadian troops to leave Afghanistan by December 2011.
Previously, the Conservative government had put forward a motion that left the mission open to renewal in 2011 and would have seen the military continue in a combat role.
The latest motion still makes Canada's continued presence in the volatile Kandahar region contingent on whether NATO allies provide 1,000 extra troops and Ottawa secures additional equipment.
Also on Friday, Canadian Gen. Ray Henault, who chairs NATO's military committee, said he believes other countries will be able to contribute the extra troops Canada requires to continue its mission in Afghanistan.
"I am confident that NATO nations will come to the assistance of Canada," said Henault. "We'll source the additional personnel requirements that Canada has called for in the south."
Motion won't restrict military operations
Canadian soldiers have been keeping a close eye on the Afghan mission debate, Hillier said, and all they ask is that the government give them a clear mandate.
"They do ask … that they get that clarity of purpose as soon as we can give it to them."
Troops also need flexibility on the ground to not only defend themselves but to ensure security by going out and finding insurgents, he said.
He noted that over the past few months Canadian soldiers have hunted down six senior Taliban leaders who orchestrated attacks against coalition forces.
Hillier said he doesn't have any concerns that the current government motion will restrict his soldiers' flexibility on the ground.
The prime minister said Thursday that both the Liberals and Conservatives agree that operational decisions should be left up to the commanders overseeing the mission in Afghanistan. -CBC

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Wanted: Climate Leaders


OTTAWA, Canada — Greenpeace marked the third anniversary of the Kyoto Protocol coming into force by projecting the words "Wanted: Climate Leaders" on the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa this evening. Activists holding candles also held vigil in protest of Canada’s lack of progress on combating global warming.
The projection, measuring roughly 15m x 15m, lit up the Parliament Buildings’ Centre Block at approximately 7:00 p.m. and remained there for 30 minutes. Greenpeace activists left the site confident their message had been delivered.
"This is a message to everyone on Parliament Hill that global warming is at your doorstep and it’s time to show some leadership on reducing greenhouse gas emissions," said Dave Martin, Climate and Energy campaign co-ordinator for Greenpeace Canada. "The Kyoto anniversary is a sad day for all Canadians who have seen a lot of hot air from Parliament contribute to rising global temperatures."
When Parliament ratified the Kyoto Protocol in December 2002, it agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions six per cent below 1990 levels between 2008 and 2012. The Protocol took effect internationally on 16 February 2005. However, by the end that year, emissions had increased 33 per cent above our Kyoto target, placing Canada among the worst countries in the world for reducing emissions.
"With a federal election around the corner, it’s not just the responsibility of politicians to show leadership on climate change, but also the voting public who are going to fill the position in our want ad," said Martin.
Greenpeace is calling for Canada to honour its Kyoto commitment and then move on to further deep reductions that will see greenhouse gas emissions reduced at least 25 per cent below 1990 levels by 2020, and 80 per cent by 2050.

PEACE COOKIE TOUR!


PEACE COOKIE WEEK
Come get a yummy vegan peace cookie and support environmental and political peace!
Where? The Vegetarian Lunchbox (420 Main St. Wolfville)
When? March 3-7 (M-F store hours)
THE PEACE COOKIE TOUR WILL TRAVEL ACROSS CANADA IN APRIL, BE ON THE LOOKOUT CANADIANS!
All donations go to fund the Summer of Change Festival 2009; a national event promoting sustainability, environmental awareness, holistic living and more!

With Knowledge We Fight!

Why Are We in Afghanistan?
by Jason Kunin
November 23, 2007

There are probably still a few people among the hardcore supporters of Canada’s war in Afghanistan who believe we’re there to restore peace, create democracy, and help women go to school. Yet among opponents, whose numbers are growing, the most common analysis is that we’re there to please the U.S. and to atone for the fact that Canada did not send troops to Iraq – complaints often rooted in a lament for a romanticized Canada, the "honest broker," the "peacekeeping" nation.

Whatever our reasons for invading Afghanistan in the first place, our reasons for still being there have little to do with simply pleasing the United States and everything to do with the usually causes of war: self-interest and profit. And all Canadians are complicit whether they know it or not. Yes, there is a small group of Canadian companies getting rich off this war. But as the profits of these companies are feeding our pension funds and creating Canadian jobs, those of us in Canada who oppose this war cannot be under any illusion that our opposition is rooted in the simple struggle between private interest and the public good. To be against this war, we must not only accept the way in which we currently benefit from it, but we must be prepared to accept the consequences of ending it. Because the reality is that it cannot be ended without cost. Ultimately, beyond merely withdrawing from this war, we must meet the deeper challenge of untangling the dependency of our public sphere on the private profit of war profiteering.

Though negligible in terms of its military power, Canada profits from war in many ways. To start, we have the dubious honour of being the sixth largest supplier of military goods in the world. Between 1997 and 2002, Canada’s military exports rose from $23 million to $678 million. Since then, according to a recent CBC investigation (1), Canada’s military exports have tripled. Though under the Export and Import Permits Act, the government is supposed to report its military exports to parliament, for the past four years – that’s three successive governments, two Liberal and one Conservative – that has not happened. Keeping this information from the public is a trend that cuts across party lines.

So who is benefiting? One company now being targeted by anti-war activists in Canada (2) is SNC-Lavalin, one of Canada’s largest publicly traded companies and one of its largest arms manufacturers. SNC-Lavalin is a major supplier of bullets to both the Canadian and American militaries. Montreal-based CAE makes flight simulators, and in August they won $60 million in military contracts for U.S., German, British, and Canadian aircrafts (3). Last year, DRS Technologies Canada and L-3 Spar Aerospace Ltd. sold a combined $87 million in military gear to the Netherlands and Norway respectively – two countries with NATO troops in Afghanistan. General Dynamics of Canada, meanwhile, has supported the occupation of Iraq with a staggering $658 million in sales of military goods to the U.S. military in 2006. And all of this is just the tip of the iceberg. (4)

Canada does not have a military-industrial complex like the United States, though there are parallels. Certainly, like the U.S., Canada is seeing its defense industry take an increasingly central role in its domestic economy, with many jobs and related industries directly or indirectly dependent upon the sale of military goods. In the U.S., there is barely a single congressional district in which thousands of jobs do not depend upon the sale of arms and other supporting industries of war. Canada is not yet there, and unlike the U.S., it does not possess the world’s largest army upon whose imperial pursuits the arms industry depends for its lifeblood.

Since most sales of military goods do not go to the Canadian army, one might well ask why Canada would bother with the expense of keeping 2,500 troops in Afghanistan. The answer is that Canada has become a lynchpin in a mission that fuels a market for international arms sales. If Canada were to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan without securing replacements, the entire mission would risk collapse, bringing down with it the market for Canada’s military exports.

That’s not something any government of Canada is going to risk. The Canadian human rights group the Coalition to Oppose the Arms Trade (COAT) reports that the Canada Pension Plan has invested over $2.55 billion in military and related industries both in Canada and abroad. This makes every Canadian, knowingly or unknowingly, a war profiteer. In 2005, Seven Oaks Magazine reported, "The [British Columbia] government controls the BC Investment Management Corporation, which in turn controls $63 billion in pension fund investments for the Municipal Pension Plan, the College Pension Plan, the Public Service Pension Plan and the Teachers Pension Plan. As of March 31, 2004, these investments included $4.6 billion worth of stock in 251 corporations producing war materiel and/or contracting to provide goods or services to the Pentagon." (5)

As a teacher who has tried unsuccessfully to get my union to adopt a policy of opposing to the presence of military recruiters in schools, I find the inclusion of the B.C. Teachers Pension Fund particularly troubling in this list of war profiteers. Institutionally, of course, teachers have always served the interests of state power – and in Ontario, where I teach, under the Education Act we are, in effect, owned by the state, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Yet I find it particularly dangerous when the state guardians of children in loco parentis have a vested interest in their charges becoming part of a war machine that lines their pension funds. This is very problematic.
For those who are troubled by the increasing militarization of Canadian society, ending Canada’s occupation of Afghanistan is only the beginning of the story. Yes, as the war grows more unpopular, Canada will likely withdraw its troops from active combat, and it may happen sooner than we think, though it will probably be the success of the Taliban’s roadside bombs, not public opinion, that will bring an end to Canada’s mission in Afghanistan. Yet unless we can unravel the increasing interdependency between military exporters and the public sphere in this country, we will have achieved only a temporary respite from the many more Afghanistans that will certainly follow.
Jason Kunin is a teacher in Toronto. He can be reached at jkunin@rogers.com.
Notes:
1.http://www.cbc.ca/news/yourview/2007/10/canadas_military_exports_soar.html. 2. See No One is Illegal campaign, http://users.resist.ca/noii-van.resist.ca/snc.html.
3. http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2007/08/07/cae-contracts.html. 4. Project Ploughshares, an ecumenical agency of the Canadian Council of Churches, publishes an excellent annual audit of arms sales in Canada, which it has posted at http://www.ploughshares.ca/libraries/monitor/mons07i.pdf.
5.http://www.sevenoaksmag.com/features/60_feat2.html.

ENOUGH OF THE PUPPETS!


Canada is in bed with this guy, and the money hungry corporates behind him; need I say anything more?
Come to Summer of Change 2009, June 21-22 2009, and let's get some REAL people to lead our country, enough of the puppets!

BIG BROTHER HARPER ONCE AGAIN YIELDS HIS UGLY EYE!

OTTAWA – The Green Party has criticized the Harper government's reinstatement of two anti-terrorism provisions from the Anti-Terrorism Act and warned that these measures may threaten fundamental Canadian values.

The investigative hearing provision allows a police officer to arrest someone and bring him or her before a judge to answer questions if the officer suspects that the person has knowledge of someone who is suspected of being involved in a terrorist activity. In addition, the preventive arrest provision allows a police officer to arrest someone without warrant if the officer suspects that the person is about to commit a terrorist attack.

These two measures were subject to a sunset clause which ensured that they would cease to apply unless they were extended by a resolution passed by both the House of Commons and the Senate.

"The government's primary responsibility is to ensure the safety and security of our communities," said Green Party leader Elizabeth May. "It is of great importance, however, that measures taken to protect the Canadian public from the threat of terrorism do not in turn threaten our fundamental rights as Canadians."

The Green Party is opposed to the investigative hearing and preventive arrest provisions for a number of reasons:

The provisions represent a substantial departure from Canadian legal traditions and their use may, over time, extend beyond terrorism offences to other offences within the Criminal Code;
No only does the obligation to give testimony seem to violate the right to remain silent, but the preventive arrest power is too broad because it can be based upon mere suspicion;
Because the provisions allow for arrests based upon suspected knowledge of others who are suspected of planning to commit offences, such provisions mean that those who volunteer information to the authorities could in turn find themselves subject to a preventive arrest or investigative hearing.
"We are wholly committed to ensuring the security of all Canadians and we will remain vigilant in our opposition to those who would threaten the safety of our communities," said Justice Critic Jared Giesbrecht. "However, we also believe what Canadians believe—true security will be gained from good governance and fair procedures that are administered according to the rule of law."

The safety of Canadians depends upon the effectiveness of our counter-terrorism and security laws. The Green Party views terrorism as an especially dangerous criminal offence. They are committed to ensuring our intelligence and law-enforcement agencies have adequate resources and the political leadership to deal effectively with these criminals.

"A responsible government will not sacrifice civil rights in the name of security. Doing so will actually open the door for greater injustice and insecurity," said Mr. Giesbrecht. "If our security policies are not consistent with the values of our society, they will serve to undermine the foundations of our society."
thanks to greenparty.ca for the update!