Friday, October 27, 2017

There is No Going Back for Chrystia Freeland

It’s become passe to note that Chrystia Freeland’s grandfather was a Nazi. It’s even become passe to note that hers were not ‘sins of the [grand]father’ but rather current offences by playing both booster andapologist for fascists who wield power in Ukraine today. The pretense, once wildly pantomimed by Scott Gilmore, or Terry Glavin, or Justin Ling, that Freeland is anything but her grandfather’s granddaughter has withered and died. Now it is simply accepted, and ignored, in the media that Freeland openly supports reactionary, xenophobic, and pro-US-Empire forces wherever and whenever they are. But her latest gaffe cannot be ignored, it is too massive, too beneath contempt, too glaringly at odds with her Liberal Government’s platitudes about ‘truth’ and ‘reconciliation’ with First Nations peoples in Canada.

At a ‘roundtable’ of Gold Company lobbyists, mouth-frothy over their imperialist profiteering being curtailed, in an auditorium built on the blood of oppressed peoples in the global south, that heaving bellend, Chrystia Freeland, had the temerity to suggest that it was ‘funny’ to say thatCanada was an imperialist oppressor because Canada ‘was the colony.’ In other words, Freeland is attempting to suggest that it is impossible that Canada be party to, implicated in, and culpable for imperialist oppression, exploitation, and primitive accumulation because once upon a time Canada was a colony of Britain. Oh *dusts hands* well then, that settles that, doesn’t it? Here we have the Foreign Affairs Minister of a Government which has made ‘truth’ and ‘reconciliation’ tweet-fodder for months, claiming that Canada is permanently exempt from the category of ‘Empire’ and that it is absurd to suggest it. This is heinous, this is foul.

Clearly this gaffe will garner little if any airtime on the CBC or pagespace in the bourgeois rags like the Post or the Mail, but it deserves to, clearly. This is a level of ignorance, cynicism, willful and concerted historical myopia that would make Kellie Leitch blush. To imply that Canada, at very least in the post-Dominion era, hasn’t been a willing and avid sub-Imperialist crony, party to theft, deprivation, and domination, isn’t just ridiculous, it’s loathesome.

This past month Venezuela held an election for regional governors, and the results did not go the way reactionary cretins like Freeland had hoped. This they took as an opportunity to heap scorn, bile, and falsehoods upon the Maduro government, a cacophony of baseless accusations, with Freeland feeling entitled to implicate her Government in her own personal descent into reactionary paranoia. No opposition groups have offered up evidence for their claims of the illegitimacy of the election, impartial and international election monitors have said explicitly that there is none.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs has anointed herself a knight in a farcical crusade on behalf of plutocrats, exploiters, cartels, mining companies, their thugs and lackeys. This was never sustainable, but, before this, the Trudeau Government could always sweep her less savory outbursts under the rug of some contrived hypocrisy of ‘universal rights.’ Not this one, however. In her comments today the Minister has crossed the Rubicon into the same space occupied by Senator Lynn Beyak – an irretrievably, irrevocably racist, reactionary, inaccurate conception of the recent past.

Every learned voice should heap calumny upon Freeland, and all the jackals of the Trudeau Government, for not only their vulgar falsehoods, but their absence of even the most rudimentary fidelity to the gospel of ‘reconciliation’ from which they preach. Pious Pharisees pontificating ahistorical fiction totally indiscernible from the most ardent fascist. This is not a repudiation of contemporary liberalism, this is contemporary liberalism.

Right now the Trudeau Liberals are reeling from the all-too-deserved scrutiny on corporate vulture Bill Morneau and his profiteering off elderly pensioners. Justice would dictate that he share the frying pan with Chrystia Freeland, who has tipped her cards, fumbled her fa├žade, and openly opined one of the most ignorant and vile mystifications in Canadian history. Freeland is a duplicitous, disingenuous, cowardly racist. How can Justin Trudeau possibly justify keeping her, given the glaring incongruity between his Government's rhetoric and the Minister's self-exculpatory, self-serving mystifications and lies about History?

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Either the Liberals Suspend the Safe Third Country Agreement, or They Are Complicit With Trump

"We can no longer trust that refugees in the United States will have access to a fair process. We must institute a process for rapid review and approval of refugee applications to Canada. Banning people because of their religion is fascist behavior. The NDP will say NO to these racist policies. The NDP calls for immediate action and for the Liberal government to stand up to the fascist, Donald Trump."

- Thomas Mulcair, NDP Leader
What the emergency session on refugees and the American Muslim Ban reveals is a deeply cynical Liberal government, obfuscating, resting on their laurels, and churning out vacuous self-congratulation, all while abandoning refugees when it is most important to stand up for them. The Liberal Government of Justin Trudeau is, apparently, content with tokenism, symbolic gestures, tweets, and their own odious self-satisfaction.

The Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA) requires “the he continual review of all countries designated as safe third countries” and that “the conditions that led to the designation as a safe third country continue to be met.” The United States is no longer a safe country for refugees and asylum seekers, the conditions that led to it being designated as a safe country are not currently being met. The United States under Donald Trump, particularly with respect to his vile and racist Muslim Ban, does not “respect human rights” nor does it “offer a high degree of protection to asylum seekers.” The United States is not according fair and due process to refugees and asylum seekers, it is neither respecting human rights nor affording a high degree of protection to those who most need it, and it is not a Safe Third Country.

If Justin Trudeau and his Liberal cronies, particularly immigration minister Ahmed Hussen, do not lift the cap on private sponsorship of refugees, streamline and accelerate refugee application processes, and, most importantly, suspend the Safe Third Country agreement – as the United States has violated its core precepts – then they are hypocrites and cowards. This abdication of the responsibility to uphold and champion human rights and immigration is loathesome and shameful, and the Liberal Government must act now to put their words into action or be forever labeled as liars and showboats. It is one thing for Trudeau to pat himself on the back at his dog and pony show 'townhalls,' it is another for him to mouth vacuous platitudes about vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers while simultaneously acting in a manner which betrays and harms them. His quietude, complacency, hypocrisy, and failure to stand up to Donald Trump will do immeasurable harm to Canada's reputation, and safety.

Two hundred Canadian law professors have written to the Immigration Minister demanding an immediate suspension of the Safe Third Country agreement. This would allow these refugees and asylum seekers to apply to Canada should they be turned away from the United States during this extraordinary period of tumult and xenophobia. The British Columbia Civil Liberties Association, too, has urged Trudeau and the Immigration Minister, Hussen, to immediately suspend the agreement.

Either the Liberal government of Justin Trudeau suspends the Safe Third Country agreement with the United States for its failure to meet the conditions that led to its designation, or Trudeau's government is complicit with and implicated in Donald Trump's odious and reactionary politics. As the NDP's Jenny Kwan asked in the House of Commons emergency session, "will we be bystanders, or will we stand up for those facing hate and descrimination?"