There’s nothing that the Chinese government likes more than Western leaders dropping all that human rights stuff and instead coming around to kowtow before them, as Steven Harper will do with President Hu Jintao this week. The Chinese government is so pleased, it will even give him the panda treatment, freeing up two bears to visit the Toronto zoo.
And what has brought about this change? In a word: Oil.
A few years ago, the Chinese government was definitely not in the panda mood. Its pipeline to the tar sands across Northern B.C. was going nowhere, seemingly unloved by Harper who instead had the audacity to meet with the Dalai Lama, that notorious “splittist” still carrying on about how his homeland has been invaded and his people violently persecuted, even today.
PetroChina ended its agreement with Enbridge and the message was sent that Ottawa needed to do more to get the pipeline done.
Fast forward a few years and Enbridge puts together a secretive $100 million war fund from Chinese state oil companies and others to mount a regulatory and public relations push for the pipeline. But, has Harper heard the lesson? Has Harper heard his Hu?
Absolutely. About a month ago, the Harper government and its agents unleashed a bully campaign on behalf of China’s pipeline, attacking opponents, discrediting Canadian voices, and even financially threatening a charity that supports one of the critics.
Team Harper’s labelling of critics as “foreign radicals” would resonate with his Chinese hosts who use similar bully rhetoric, although it may also make them nervous considering all that Chinese money that has gone into Enbridge’s lobbying campaign inside Canada. Harper can console them on this point though: Hypocrisy does not apply to those uninterested in self-reflection.
So Harper has heard his Hu and is now fully engaged on his behalf. Harper tries to wrap this pipeline up in language about Canada’s “national interest,” but allows no definition of that term that does not coincide exactly with what the tar sands industry wants, which is mindless expansion at any cost.
Yet Harper is unlikely to inform his hosts that despite his best efforts, the democracy called Canada is not ready to rubber stamp this pipeline just yet. He probably won’t say that First Nations remain vehemently opposed and can at the very least tie the project up in court for many years. He also won’t say that his bullying is backfiring, or that British Columbia simply doesn’t want the pipeline and could very well elect a government that won’t let it happen.
Overall, Canadians will be happy to see panda bears, but they want even more to protect their very own spirit bears from oil spills and that means no tar sands pipeline to China.
More importantly, they want a government that doesn’t sell out Canadian values — going from supporting victims like the Dalai Lama to bullying its own people — all to promote a dirty product that is stealing the future from our children.
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This article above should be retitled ‘Harper Tattles a Hu . . .’
Choose between moral right and greed. Canada is appealing to China’s baser nature if anything, will like a bad friend introducing addictive substances to a newbie in the club – or on this world stage, make China as hated as the colonial occupied nations, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and even U.S.A..
China could keep it’s hands ethically clean by not dealing in oil but make enquiry on eco-tourism, infrastructure and human rights development and focusing on Native Canadian representation at the UN for a start? How ‘white’ is Canada and what good would oil do to China’s reputation overall? And do the whites that are in power know about the native canadian sovereignty issue? Perhaps the Chinese could focus on developing hydro in Canada instead where ‘spirit bears’ will not be affected? Would be an eye opening scientific and exploration venture, instead of using the oil route. Clean is always good, native is always better. What DOES Harper get out of the whole thing? Oily snow? Inroads into Canada should be better done in anything but the heavily industrial route which perhaps may undermine China’s relations with the First Peoples should they somehow manage to become the new custodians or Canada. By natural right Canada is a Red Race led nation not white Canadian. China should keep this potentiality open and develop or wait for Fusion energy to be developed instead. Destruction of environment for some profit or energy security based on dated paradigms (combustion probably is very backward now, everyone is watching so why not help emancipate the First Peoples or at least not cause pollution and taking their lands instead?
If China has the mind for it, China should invest in the eco-green and First People’s FIRST paradigm instead of the colonial/corporate raider paradigm. It’s just energy, and the sovereignty of native people compromised could remove China’s methods (as described in various unconventional strategies by China’s less known ‘strategists’) of countering competition (also entirely removing colonial influence on a human rights basis) from colonial powers clothed in modernity across the world, as well as make China morally wrong and as detestable as the colonial peoples – raping the land and polluting pristine land, displacing where First Peoples live.
In as soon as Fusion technology is invented, the Oil technology, oil extraction paradigm and permanent loss of reputation among First Nations which could be diplomatically devastating to China in the long run, China will regret rushing for what could be useless resources and a loss of repute and the all important moral right to throw out colonial bullies or liberate colonised peoples who have no representation in the UN. China would keep it’s fair reputation and could be potential emancipators of the First Peoples (not suggesting an excuse for a War of Liberation . . . but there you go, the First Peoples might very well be the Manchus in China to the Japanese in WW2 . . . IF China leaves that oil alone.), China needs to think 100,000 years ahead not 10 or 100 years (this probably will be the time frame for Fusion sources that will render whatever Oil acquisitions worthless and destroy relations and reputation in a way that China may not recover from).
Overall the world would be a happier place if First Peoples retook representation and political power from the colonial powers and China could even then, though Fusion if invented already would make Oil meaningless, get the now First People led government to allow the Chinese to use that oil. The potentially most dangerous power bloc is best dismantled through this method, and China already has the upper hand. Do not underestimate the HUMAN factor, energy from the already expiring oil tech paradig, will be nothing compared in the near future – by ethical considerations China should leave the oil alone and focus on human rights and Native canadian representation and Sovereignty instead, though in a reasonable manner – gentle admonitions to shame these colonial led governments will do? Think Native Americans, Native Canadians, Aboriginese and Maori. Don’t these people feel bad somehow somewhere? That these First Nations have no representation on the UN? BRICS is well placed to raise the status of First Peoples, via the ethical and sovereignty, non-racism angle to their rightful pre-colonial sovereign state.
Also this ethical stance is also the ticket to wage war on the West by IF BRICS-ALBA-PIIGS feels strong enough to take on the West. Miscalculate the power here to wrest these 4 rightfully First People headed nations though (as mentioned like Manchuria was in Japan during WW2 except that Japan made Manchuria a puppet rather than an independent state), and the results would be as fatal as Vietnam was for USA or Afghanistan was for Soviet Union.
Wage war or use diplomacy to win these 4 colonial nations with installation of First People leaders though, and we will find that BRICS will likely be the de facto power for the rest of human history. How BRICS-ALBA-PIIGS treats the First Peoples at that point will be an indicator of what kind of people they are and how the world turns out – remember no peoples want to be annihilated or have no UN representation . . . but China’s last stint as hegemon of the Eastern world was 600+ years ago and was toppled only a mere 60+ years ago . . . do the right thing China . . . that the the colonial powers are still unable to – liberation of entire peoples, allowance of rightful representation on the UN and autonomy in political power . . .
Stephen Harper’s “Ethical” Visit To China Wednesday, February 08, 2012
Harper had a special gift for the president of China Hu Jintao, a can of “ethical oil” all the way from the tarsands. If this deal goes through, I wish all my friends from British Columbia good luck because it will be a port in BC from where this “ethical oil” will be shipped to China with a pipeline running through the province.
Posted by LeDaro at 11:10 AM
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Mocking consideration for reputation does show some true colours does it not?