Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Dec. 15: You have to learn how to hate....

Harper has been the latest in a long line of Canadian prime ministers who have taught hatred. Recently, he's been big on denouncing communism - and pronouncing it "evil". That's surely an odd thing to do with a system that doesn't exist any more and, in fact, never existed. (Contrary to popular belief and to their own claims, Russia, China and Cuba have never been communist - just as Canada and the US have never really been capitalist.

As for the "evil" part, only humans can be evil. Evil is a spiritual condition. Trees, rocks, and mountains cannot be evil. Economic systems cannot be evil because it is people who operate the systems. They make it what it is. Capitalism, itself, is not evil. What's evil, is people who use such systems to exploit slave labour,  to loot other countries, to cut essential services for our own people, to buy politicians....

But to do that, they have to make the rest of us hate - and the most effective way to hate and to encourage us to support cruelties around the world is racism.

So what is racism? It's a belief that all the qualities we have are genetic; they're inherited and can't be changed. Skin colour, facial features are obvious examples. But racists take it beyond that. They include morality, judgement, violence,  criminality as characteristics of race. And we have used that thinking to enslave, murder,degrade hundreds billions for all of history.

It's been an attractive tactic to politicians as long as there have been politicians. Hitler is the obvious example. But he's by no means been the worst.  In fact, for the last several centuries, it's western, Christian countries (including Germany)  that have been the leaders in racist beliefs, in teaching hatreds based on these beliefs, and using these poisonous hatreds to justify slavery, exploitations, empires. (And Canada has been right up front of the mob - more on that later.)

The   cruelties, thefts, exploitation, looting and murder that we call the age of western imperialism were all justified by racism, a belief that the people being brutalized and murdered and robbed and enslaved and killed weren't real people like us. They were of inferior races. That's why the US could declare itself a nation of equality even as it kidnapped millions to be slaves to the white folks. That's why the US and Canada had a right, even a responsibility, to destroy native Canadian societies. That's what justified the deliberate death by starvation of so many of our  native people in the West.

Read Churchill's 4 volume "History of the English-speaking Peoples". It's basic theme is that white, English-speaking people are racially superior. Churchill was, all  his life, a thoroughly racist man. The United States was very much a creation of that sort of thinking. It still is. And so is Canada.

Read the writing of Canada's most Christian and compassionate thinkers in the early 1900s. For a typical one, try "Strangers Within Our Gates" by  Rev. J.S. Woodsworth. It's a hymn to racism and hatred. And the Canadian government had use for that hatred and racism.

People singled out as belonging to races that were inherently evil were put into concentration camps in World War I. There was no reason, except that they were racially inferior and evil. The camps were really slave labour camps to provide free labour for Canadian business. Those people were in the camps early in the war, and were held and used - especially for dangerous jobs - until two years AFTER the war. And the Canadian people, racist to the core,  applauded.

And who were these inherently evil and dangerous people? Well, the largest group, 9,000 of them, was made up of Ukrainians. You know, Ukrainians, the ones we are now defending from evil and racially inferior Russians.

Is Canada racist? It is - to this day - and racism becomes the justification for mass murder.

I spent so much time on this today because Harper has been beating the drum for racism lately.
What he has done, publicly, is to identify communism as evil. At the same time, he has linked the name of Putin to that evil. There are problems with that. Putin is not a communist. Russia is not communist. It's economy is thoroughly capitalist, and just as thoroughly corrupt and corrupting as the capitalism on our side.

So why does Harper want to build a hugely expensive monument to victims of communism when he could as well build one to the victims of capitalism and communism? He doing it this way because he wants to create a racist monument, to create a hatred that will justify killing.

(Actually, it's shallower than that. Being Harper, he doesn't much want to do anything except to create an image of himself as a bold warrior and a leader of the west. And this will cost you at least fifteen million dollars and the destruction of that section of Ottawa which is supposed to be reserved to reflect Canadian development.)

There is really nothing in the Dec. 15 issue of the TandT. A big, Wow! front page story is about how some guy makes whiskey in Ontario. I needed to know that.

The editorial is incoherent until you  hit the second to last line. It's a pitch for shale gas. As usual, the editor uses the word bureaucrat in a disparaging way to refer to top civil servants. I have never seen this paper use a disparaging adjective for private businessmen.

Alec Bruce is good on the US Senate torture report. It's surely odd that this report has received so little attention in the Irving press. And the Canadian participation has not been mentioned at all. We played an active role to transporting prisoners to torture camps around the world. We received (and used) information obtained by  torture. It went to the RCMP and the intelligence services - and they knew how it was obtained. We also turned over prisoners to the US army, knowing that they were likely to be tortured. Canadian officials sat in on torture sessions. And it almost certainly went further than that. But our front page story is about how a guy in Ontario makes whiskey.
In NewsToday. there's an important, if incomplete, story of how our northern Inuit are starving as a result of high unemployment, extremely high prices for food, and a decline in hunting due to climate change.  Not to worry. I'm sure Harper will do something - just as soon as he finishes his fifteen million dollar (plus) monument to the victims of communism.

On B4, the president of Afghanistan criticizes insurgents who are attacking his rule. Gee! Who would have guessed he would criticize them? On B5, the British government is going to ask the US to give it access to the Senate report on torture so it can see what part the British played in it. There is no mention that Harper hasn't made a similar request. Well, why should he? Muslims are evil and racially inferior to us White Christians and Jews. So  it's okay to torture them.

Also on B5, the UN climate talks in Peru achieved next to nothing. Of course. Get used to a reality. The oil industry is probably the most powerful and wealthy industry in the world. There is not the slightest possibility it will do anything that might endanger its profits. It won't allow renewable energy. Why should it? It makes its money out of creating greenhouse gases.  It will use bought politicians, bought news media and, through them,  violence and even world war to keep its profits coming in. There are no limits to its greed. That's a reality that we have to deal with.

It would make a good sermon for the next service at the Irving Chapel.
For Dec. 16, section A is its usual, trivial self. A3, for example, has a photo of the CEO of  NB Power and a story in which he tells us how good NB power is. It's like reading a story about a proud mother talking about how wonderful her lazy and violent son is.

The editorial, as always, is about something local, very local. It's obvious that whoever writes those editorials knows nothing about any world more than a few blocks from the TandT offices.

Alec Bruce's column is a subtle pitch for the Events Centre, something the writers for the Irving press routinely support. Of course. An Irving wants it. "I wan' it, I wan' it, I wan' it."

Alan Cochrane completely misses the point with a column on how we should give to charities  not just at Christmas but all year round. 1. That's just not going to happen. 2. Any society that relies on charities to provide basic necessities is an irresponsible society - and an unChristian, unJudaic, and unMuslim one. If an Irving wants an events centre, we demand that our tax money be used to build one.  If an Irving wants our forests, we give them to him. But if someone is starving, we call  on volunteers, most of whom are, themselves, short of money. That's something that works one day a year, at best, because it relies on the poor helping the poor. It would be much  more effective for all of us to work together, starting with getting the rich to pay their share of taxes.

B4 has the story that Denmark has officially filed a claim on the North Pole - looking head to the development of oil reserves under it.

Not to worry. The US will never allow that. American oil companies will never permit it.They already refuse to recognize Cananda's claims to the north, and they're already advanced in planning for oil development up there. Canada is allowed to 'just pretend' that it has any Arctic claims, just so long as it doesn't in any way interfere with the plans of American oil and shipping companies - and certainly so long as it doesn't pass any of that artsy-fairy environmental stuff.

There is still remarkably little information about the drop in oil prices. I certainly don't know the whole story. But this is not simply a development of normal, market forces.

We know it started with Saudi Arabia flooding the market with a glut of oil. In other words, it's a deliberate deflation of the price of gas. But why?

One reason is that they're looking to kill the shale gas industry as a competitor. You'd think that a shale gas booster like the Irving Press would see that. The fact that they don't suggests there is also another reason - to wreck the Russian economy which depends on sales of expensive oil. That would explain why Putin recently signed huge gas deals with China, Turkey, and India. Not only will that provide Russia with sales; it also creates a massive counterpart to European Union, and offering Asia, especially, an alternative to US domination..

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