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COMMENTARY · 30th May 2012
Merv Ritchie

A bold and shocking news release, issued Tuesday, May 29th, by Canada’s International Trade section announced they had secured deals with the worlds top oppressive regimes and, to facilitate even better ties, are securing top executive industrialists for direction.

Even though these trade deals are with some of the most notable corrupt and despotic regimes, not one selected advisor is associated with human dignity, let alone rights.

While residents of British Columbia protest China as being behind the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline and tanker traffic, the Canadian Government is boasting of new deals with even more oppressive regimes.

The news release begins with colourful words promising prosperity;

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today announced the members of a new advisory panel that will help guide Canada’s ambitious, pro-trade plan in large, dynamic and fast-growing priority markets.

This sounds great until one reads, as the release begins to lists, where these “large, dynamic […] priority markets” are; as the news release continues,

-[Canada] concluded new free trade agreements with nine countries: Colombia, Jordan, Panama, Peru, the European Free Trade Association (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), and Honduras;

This media spin is insidious. Note the writer placed the words “European Free Trade Association” in between Peru and Honduras; two of South Americas most despotic regimes. European Free Trade Association. This is supposed to dampen the thoughts of the most corrupt murderous governments on the planet. The European Free Trade Association is a failing organization, faltering on the backside of the European Union losing more than half of their membership, nine countries to the current four listed, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

The Canadian government does not expect you to know this. And Liechtenstein? We boast about this plot of land no bigger than 62 square miles as a “large, dynamic, priority market?”

Peru? The shining light for the persecution of rights? In 2009, during the beginning of June, the Peru government attempted to stop Peru people from stopping Canadian oil companies from destroying their land. The Peru police killed 25 people. Then the Peru government shut down the local independent media.

Honduras? From the Globe and Mail;

Honduras is an impoverished quasi-dictatorship where journalists are routinely assassinated. Canada sells less than $50-million a year there (while importing four times as much). We export more to the United States in 88 minutes than to Honduras in a year.

Stephen Harper is on a march to the bottom of the pack and he is taking all Canadians with him. Canadians are becoming the most despised. It is such a great betrayal to all peoples of the world who looked to the great Nation of Canada for dignity and respect. We were seen as peaceful, kind and considerate; purveyors of truth and justice. Where anywhere on the planet being Canadian was like having a get out of jail free card. Even Israeli spies used Canadian passports. We were that trust worthy. But no more.

As right thinking Canadians question and worry about shipping Canada’s most valuable raw resource, petroleum, to China, Stephen Harper has long left them in the dust. China is nothing in the grand scheme, just you wait. Move on over, we have a freight train comin’ through.

And just when you thought it couldn’t get more desperate, the Stephen Harper news release spin machine boldly tells more. They proclaim for all to see who they desire to take guidance from. All business and industrialist types; no nonsense pillagers; with nary a single representation of human dignity or social conscience included.

Harper was once quoted as stating, ‘when I’m done you won’t recognize Canada’. He underestimated even himself.

When Harper is done you might not recognize civilized society at all. Dead bodies will just be the cost of doing business. It already is with these new trade partners, we're simply shaking their hands.

There is so much more to be said. It is an affront to everything Canadian; who we associate with, how, and the protection measures we will provide for them.

Apparently Canadians will now be allowed to work in China and Honduras. Like they couldn’t before? Read between the lines.

In a final media spin miester mania the writer co-opts the word climate with this masterful sentence;

In what remains a fragile global economic climate[…]

Yes, Canada is out to help solve the fragile global climate, ‘cept it isn’t the global climate, it is the global financial climate.

And that is the difference between Canadians and their Government. They are each worried about different climates.

It is obvious the writers know this and they compose releases to disguise the truth while boldly proclaiming it.

Damn it would be nice to be such a great writer.

Read the entire news release. Read it twice.

And consider the type of society you would like your children to be raised in. The one our ancestors ran from or the one they built for us.

Harper Government Launches Next Phase of Canada’s Pro-Trade Plan for Jobs, Growth and Long-Term Prosperity
Minister Fast names advisory panel to help update Global Commerce Strategy

May 29, 2012 -

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today announced the members of a new advisory panel that will help guide Canada’s ambitious, pro-trade plan in large, dynamic and fast-growing priority markets.

“Our government’s top priority is the economy—creating jobs, growth and long term prosperity for Canadian workers, businesses and families,” said Minister Fast in a keynote address to the Canadian Chamber of Commerce at its annual International Trade Day in Ottawa.

“We understand the importance of trade to our economy. Trade accounts for one out of every five jobs in Canada and over 60 percent of our country’s annual income. That is why we are deepening Canada’s trading relationships in priority markets around the world.”

Since 2006, the Harper government has pursued the most ambitious pro-trade plan in Canada’s history. A central element of the plan was the launch of the Global Commerce Strategy (GCS) in 2007. This has driven Canadian leadership on the world stage in support of trade, job creation, economic growth and prosperity for hard-working Canadians. Under the GCS, the government has:

• concluded new free trade agreements with nine countries: Colombia, Jordan, Panama, Peru, the European Free Trade Association (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), and Honduras;

• begun deepening trade and investment ties with the largest, most dynamic and fastest-growing markets in the world, including Brazil, China, the countries of the European Union, India and Japan;

• concluded or brought into force new foreign investment promotion and protection agreements with 11 countries (Bahrain, China, the Czech Republic, Jordan, Peru, Kuwait, Latvia, Madagascar, Mali, Romania and Slovakia), while negotiations continue with 11 others, including India; and

• opened new trade offices in the fast growing priority markets of Brazil, China and India.

“Thanks to our government’s pro-trade leadership, Canadian workers and businesses now have preferred access to, and a real competitive edge in, more markets around the world than at any other time in our history,” said Minister Fast. “That is why we are taking steps today to build on this success through a refreshed Global Commerce Strategy.”

The Economic Action Plan 2012 states that, following consultations with the business community—including the critically important small and medium-sized business sector—an updated GCS will align Canada’s trade and investment objectives in specific high-growth and strategic priority markets, with an eye to ensuring that Canada is branded to its greatest advantage in those markets.

The advisory panel members named today by Minister Fast follow, with their organizations:

• Murad Al-Katib, Alliance Grain Traders Inc., President and Chief Executive Officer, Chair of the Minister of International Trade’s Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises Advisory Board;

• Paul Reynolds, Canaccord Financial Inc., President and Chief Executive Officer;

• Kathleen Sullivan, Canadian Agri Food Trade Alliance, Executive Director;

• The Honourable Perrin Beatty, Canadian Chamber of Commerce, President and Chief Executive Officer;

• The Honourable John Manley, Canadian Council of Chief Executives, President and Chief Executive Officer;

• Catherine Swift, Canadian Federation of Independent Business, President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairwoman;

• Jayson Myers, Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters, President and Chief Executive Officer;

• Brian Ferguson, Cenovus Energy Inc., President and Chief Executive Officer;

• Serge Godin, CGI Group Inc.,Founder and Executive Chairman of the Board; and

• Indira Samarasekera, University of Alberta, President.

“I look forward to receiving advice from these knowledgeable Canadian leaders, all of whom are advocates of a broad and ambitious Global Commerce Strategy, on an updated plan that will guide Canada’s trade priorities going forward,” said Minister Fast. “In what remains a fragile global economic climate, our government’s pro-trade leadership is generating benefits for hard-working Canadians in every region of our country. A new Global Commerce Strategy will build on this success and ensure that we continue to stand tall on the world stage.”

The new Global Commerce Strategy will be announced in 2013.
Harper, If you play with pigs you get dirty!
Comment by J.Brian Waddington on 31st May 2012
Harper has no qualms about working with Genocidal governments. He sees no problems with working with Ecocidal governments.

I believe it is time for Harper to say good-bye. And if he won't say it lets see if he can say 'impeachment'.
Comment by Karen Dedosenco on 30th May 2012
...just how much long-term damage one despotic leader can do to a country in only four short years, and then realize that it can happen in a once democratic and respected nation like Canada. We still have three years to go...