Saturday, June 1, 2013

June 1: Back in the gutter again...

Whoever writes the editorials for the TandT wrote a sort of respectable one yesterday. It was really propaganda for SWN; and it was written to stir up fear and hatred of shale gas progesters. But at least it wasn't the real down and dirty stuff that the editorials usually are. Today makes up for that lapse.

It repeats the SWN propaganda that it simply could not expose its employees to physical threats by protesters. (Never mind that such threats were never made.) And my goodness, the only protection that the SWN people would  have is all the armed police in the province. Of course, the protesters could fight back, armed with their plastic Stop Shale Gas signs.

Never mind, too, that SWN is used to protesters all over the US and Canada. In any such case, it's the one with muscle on its side. This lying editorial is an attempt to stir up fears, lies and hatreds. It's written to support the propaganda and lies of SWN. That kind of lying and fear-mongering is exactly what creates violence - and the violence usually comes from the billionaires who can rely on the support of political hacks and the full resources of police and even military power.

Then he says the protesters are closing their eyes to the financial benefits of shale gas development. On the contrary, it's the editorial writer who has closed  his eyes to the consequences of it - and who has routinely lied about it.

Incidentally, it is not likely that shale gas will bring prosperity to New Brunswick. Most of the money, by far, will go out of the province.

In a related case, BC has refused to allow a pipeline from the tar sands to cross it. The arguments against it are much the same as those against shale gas. How odd that the TandT didn't bother to report the BC story!

What's really going on here? The age of fossil fuels is coming to an end. Oil and gas moguls - and Harpers - are determined to sell as much of it as possible before the roof caves in. And if that poisons us and impoverishes us for generations to come, so be it. They'll rip what they can out of the province, and leave us to cope with the disasters. Not they're problem. They'll be busy ripping off somebody else in some other part of the world.

Big business lives for now. Its idea of future does not extend more than three months. And it has only one concern - making profits. It couldn't care less about what that does to people. That's why it's fatally dangerous to allow business to corrupt and to interfere with government.


In a related story (on p. D1) there was a riot at a Canadian gold mine in Krygyzstan in which 85 people were injured. That's not unusuall. Canadian mining companies have a dreadful reputation all over the world for brutality, bad working conditions, confiscation of land, displacement of people, beatings, murder all over the world.

If the TandT is really concerned about violence, if might want to take a look at that as, for example, in Central America where pollution from Canadian mines runs wild, and where thousands have been killed by police and the army. Gee! How brave of the mining companies to put their executives at risk. Luckily, the armies and police have concentrated their beatings, killings and rapes on the lowly employees, not on the company bosses.
The rest of editorial and op ed were okay - and Gwynne Dyer was excellent. Brent Mazerolle's column was a little lightweight - all about the naming of a school. But at least is was an opinion column, and not a doggie woggie story.
Check out Isabelle Agnew's column on p. F3. She responds to pastor Richard Jackson's sermonette on last week's face page. She thought it was a good column - and I agree. But what's most interesting is that his column took a very practical approach to religion - and that is what got a response from Isabelle Agnew.

This wasn't a dozy column about how sweet Jesus is. It was about Christianity as a practical matter - the only such sermonette I have seen on that page. And it made contact. And it stimulated thinking. And it created interest. This is good stuff. But Miss Agnew tells the story a whole lot better than I do - so be sure to read her.
A reminder about the gathering of the current events groups this Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Moncton library. All are welcome. One topic for this session is "The truth about Stephen Harper". I have always thought him an ideologue with fanatical political philosophy with the potential to destroy Canada. I may have been wrong.

I think now that he has no political ideology at all - just a fanatical desire to have power (with the potential to destroy Canada.)



  1. With respect to Kyrgyzstan, Reformers are in an uproar over a state of emergency in Kyrgyzstan threatening Canadian corporate interests, and the mood is ugly among the imperialist muslim-baiters on Yahoo, as news reports indicate:

    "Kyrgyzstan imposed a state of emergency on a northern district on Friday to protect Centerra Gold's Kumtor mine from protesters, but more unrest against the Canadian investor flared up in the country's south."

    "Toronto-listed Centerra Gold's Kumtor mine, nestling in the Tien Shan mountains, is Kyrgyzstan's largest gold deposit and helps keep the Central Asian state's shaky economy afloat."

    "But Centerra has come under immense local pressure. A state commission has said the firm is paying too little to run Kumtor and accused it of damaging the environment while protesters have raised demands ranging from jobs at Kumtor to building roads."

    "Police on Friday cleared away demonstrators who had been blocking the road to Kumtor for days and arrested 92 people, Prime Minister Zhantoro Satybaldiyev told a news conference."

    "A few hours later police used tear gas and stun grenades in clashes with villagers who tried to seize a substation and cut power supplies to the mine, a police spokesman said. Fifty-five people, including policemen, needed medical treatment."

    So I waded into a Reform hatefest of capitalist threat-mongering and muslim-baiting to comment :

    "From the perspective of the people of Kyrgystan, foreign corporations are exploiting their resources, and they are demanding control and ownership of their resource industries."

    and again
    "It would appear Kyrgyz opposition politicians are calling for nationalization of the mine. And the US equivalent of modern day Reformers howled their outrage and demanded armed intervention when the Mexican government nationalized their oil industry in the 1930's. Whereas wherever greed and exploitation are to be found, you will find Reformers bowing and scraping before their masters, as the Wildrose leader bowed and curtsied before Lord Black at the Calgary Petroleum Club luncheon...."
    and again

    "Ironic how the comments about ungrateful locals - see how we raised their standards of living, gave them education, gave them jobs in the mines, after everything we've done for them - were voiced by Belgian, French, British, Portuguese colonialists complaining about the wretched ingratitude of locals working the copper mines in the Congo or the diamond mines in Angola, when tensions reached the point that the locals revolted and decided they wanted to manage and control their own resource industries. "

    To which one Alberta Reformer, Little or no Sympathy commented:

    "Maybe if people would stand together and stand up to the government here, things would change (The Province of Quebec is EXCLUDED from this comment)"

    to which I reponded:
    "The residents of Quebec reciprocate with little or no sympathy for the party making such comment..."

  2. Yes, Stephen Harper should be brought up on charges for his treasonous and numerous attacks on Canadian democracy.

    Look at this Toronto G20 video of police masquerading as protestors, (possibly as agent provocateurs) then being found out. The video portion begins after several still photos.

    If you remember, Stephen Harper was nonplussed about this.

    This is only the beginning of many cowardly acts condoned or enacted by the likes of Stephen Harper.

    An honest Prime Minister without anything to hide would never allow the police at these events to get away with this. It's the police and a complicit and mismanaging Prime Minister who is breaking all public trusts at all levels in Canada.

  3. "it's fatally dangerous to allow business to corrupt and to interfere with government."
    It's something like separation of church and state isn't it ... citing that those controlling our government are worshiping the corporate profits.

  4. Shale gas wont be extracted in my area i dont care if i have to face 20 years of prison ill burn a million dollars worth of equipment everyday fuck harper and fuck our goverment you wont destroy our home

  5. "I think now that he [Harper] has no political ideology at all - just a fanatical desire to have power (with the potential to destroy Canada.)"

    Well said. Blind ambition, hubris and narcissism all rolled into one.

  6. Two bullies are standing at the door of the province. One is SWN furiously knocking on the door while the T&T is yelling insults, absurdities, and pro shale gas propaganda. Our NB premier is the proverbial submissive doorman. He is waiting for the door to be unlocked so that he can lead the corporate shale gas bully onto our beloved territory - New Brunswick.

    SWN wants to succeed in coercing us to sign an evil contract offering us misery, agony, disease, and therefore, death, in exchange for extremely profitable exploitation of our resources.

    SWN will do anything and everything to make a profit with total disregard to our health, economy, and our environment. The T&T and our NB premier are no better. They are cheering them on.