The Wife of Wrath
» If no inquiry, then what? Indigenous women talk about how to stem the violence via The Current

First Nations communities often feel their voices are left out of the discussions, and that to create real change, solutions will need to come from within the communities themselves.

To talk about what that change might look like, we were joined by:

Sarah Hunt, a researcher and educator who has focused on issues of violence and justice with First Nations communities in B.C. for more than 15 years.

Erin Konsmo, the Media Arts Justice and Projects Coordinator at the Native Youth Sexual Health Network, and the Youth Coordinator and Media Contact for Walking With Our Sisters.

» Alberta sells off habitat of endangered caribou

God damn it Alberta.

This photo from my last bout pretty much sums up my political feelings for today (smash it, smash all of it). After listening to today’s disgraceful question period, I dropped by Murray Rankin’s constituency office to sign a petition against Bill C-23, the (Un)Fair Elections Act, something I had been meaning to do for a few weeks. If you wanna do something similar, find more info here: http://murrayrankin.ndp.ca/take-actionI mean I know we’ve got much deeper problems in this country, political and social and otherwise, but #stopharper seems like a pretty good place to start.

This photo from my last bout pretty much sums up my political feelings for today (smash it, smash all of it). After listening to today’s disgraceful question period, I dropped by Murray Rankin’s constituency office to sign a petition against Bill C-23, the (Un)Fair Elections Act, something I had been meaning to do for a few weeks.

If you wanna do something similar, find more info here: http://murrayrankin.ndp.ca/take-action

I mean I know we’ve got much deeper problems in this country, political and social and otherwise, but #stopharper seems like a pretty good place to start.

And so we continue to look to indigenous peoples like the savages we imagine them to be, meanwhile, Loretta is dumped in a ditch like road kill in a province that once paid European invaders for the scalps of Mi’kmaq women, children, and men, repeating a centuries-old pattern in ways that are much too familiar to be a coincidence, to be irony, to be senseless. But these are the most common qualifiers I read about Loretta’s life and death. Loretta herself expressed the patterned, structured ways of colonial violence very clearly in her work, which I reread last night before falling asleep.
Darryl Leroux, Loretta Saunders’ thesis advisor, “In Honour of Loretta
douglashaddow:

| I like to consider myself a ‘Blue Liberal’ in the most classic sense. It makes me feel like a grown-up. As such, I tend to hold a less reactionary position on the Harper government and its crude approach to politics in comparison to my more orange-tinted friends.

"This, I believe, will be the truly enduring, universal shame of Harper’s tenure as Prime Minister. Perhaps I have too much faith in the healing power of hockey, but I believe even the most vitriolic CBC critic can’t help but feel some sense of loss from HNIC’s impending demise. And If Harper truly is the man he purports to be, a part of him will rightfully die along with it."As much as I love me some Douglas Haddow, I’m not quite cynical enough yet to fully buy into the opening spiel. But he sure cuts deep here. Currently imagining the day when I have to sit around with my grandkids and tell them we had crazy stuff like clean fresh water and free hockey broadcasts.

douglashaddow:

| I like to consider myself a ‘Blue Liberal’ in the most classic sense. It makes me feel like a grown-up. As such, I tend to hold a less reactionary position on the Harper government and its crude approach to politics in comparison to my more orange-tinted friends.

"This, I believe, will be the truly enduring, universal shame of Harper’s tenure as Prime Minister. Perhaps I have too much faith in the healing power of hockey, but I believe even the most vitriolic CBC critic can’t help but feel some sense of loss from HNIC’s impending demise. And If Harper truly is the man he purports to be, a part of him will rightfully die along with it."

As much as I love me some Douglas Haddow, I’m not quite cynical enough yet to fully buy into the opening spiel. But he sure cuts deep here. Currently imagining the day when I have to sit around with my grandkids and tell them we had crazy stuff like clean fresh water and free hockey broadcasts.

» Tory 'revenge porn' bill touches on terrorism, cable theft

myradish:

wifeofwrath:

The Conservatives are using cyberbullying and child suicide to sneak in previously defeated internet surveillance legislation—and it’s fucking disgusting, even for them. I’m assuming this will set up a repeat of the ‘you either stand with the us or with the child pornographers’ rhetoric, a la Vic Toews, but seriously these people don’t seem to have any morals. The Conservatives are literally using these girls’ bodies for their own gain. The Conservatives are no different than the bullies who caused Rehtaeh, Amanda, and others, to commit suicide. It makes me fucking sick.

We absolutely need laws to deal with revenge porn, but this is beyond shameful.

Which makes this exactly like every single one of the other omnibus bills…

Except worse:

RT : - We have in fact reached the point where our Government is using a dead teenager to shield bad law.

» Tory 'revenge porn' bill touches on terrorism, cable theft

The Conservatives are using cyberbullying and child suicide to sneak in previously defeated internet surveillance legislation—and it’s fucking disgusting, even for them. I’m assuming this will set up a repeat of the ‘you either stand with the us or with the child pornographers’ rhetoric, a la Vic Toews, but seriously these people don’t seem to have any morals. The Conservatives are literally using these girls’ bodies for their own gain. The Conservatives are no different than the bullies who caused Rehtaeh, Amanda, and others, to commit suicide. It makes me fucking sick.

We absolutely need laws to deal with revenge porn, but this is beyond shameful.

» Federal government prepares $24-million oilsands advertising blitz

mulchthegovernment:

An oilsands facility seen from a helicopter near Fort McMurray, Alta. According to Natural Resources Canada, the government believes domestic and international campaigns against the oilsands are partly to blame for proposed regulations that unfairly target the oil sands in the U.S. and Europe. Photograph by: Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press/Files , Postmedia News

OTTAWA – The federal Conservatives hope to counter “intense and sustained public relations campaigns” against Alberta’s oilsands with a $24-million international advertising blitz.

The two-year ad campaign will target political and business leaders, as well as media organizations and domestic political advocates in the United States, Europe and Asia.  According to a request for proposals issued by Natural Resources Canada, the government believes domestic and international campaigns against the oilsands are partly to blame for proposed regulations that “unfairly target the oil sands” in the U.S. and Europe.

The document specifically references California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard, Section 526 of the U.S. Energy Independence and Security Act, and Europe’s Fuel Quality Directive as proposals based on “preconceived notions about the oil sands that are not supported by science.”

“Canada has been, and continues to be, the target of intense and sustained public relations campaigns by domestic and international organizations, criticizing our domestic natural resource development policies and companies engaged in resource developments,” the NRCan document reads. “These campaigns have resulted in inaccurate information becoming part of the public debate.”

The government intends to contract the advertising campaign to an agency to provide “rapid response” and proactive public and media campaigns through both traditional and social media. The agency would be expected to develop a specialized website for “C-class” business leaders – CEOs and CFOs – and secure advertising placement on the internet and public places such as billboards. “Earned media” – which basically means news media coverage of the campaign – also figures in the strategy.

The department’s planned messaging highlights an “enhanced regulatory system” and Canada’s commitment to safeguard the environment, as well as “unparalleled” investment opportunities in the natural resource sector.

“Canada is a world leader in the responsible development of natural resources,” one planned talking point reads. “Canada is a stable and secure energy choice compared to international alternatives.”

The short-term objective of the campaign is to draw people to a new website – travel.gc.ca is cited as an example – that provides more information on Canada’s natural resource sector and investment opportunities, and increase meetings with business people.

The long-term goal, according to the department’s plan, is to increase direct foreign investments in the Canadian natural resources sector.

“This campaign will raise awareness in key international markets that Canada is a secure and reliable supplier of natural resources,” department spokesperson Jacinthe Perras said in an email.

The PR push comes at a time when the federal Conservatives are having a tough time selling the Keystone XL pipeline, which has met opposition from environmental groups on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border, and as it grapples with Europe’s proposal for a fuel quality directive.

Canada maintains the proposed fuel directive is a discriminatory and non-scientific approach that singles out oilsands as having higher carbon emissions than other sources, without any sound studies examining the greenhouse gases from the conventional oil the EU actually imports.

Canada has previously threatened to launch a trade war with the European Union and take the fuel proposal to the World Trade Organization if it is passed.

An independent assessment commissioned by the Harper government, analyzing the carbon content of European fuels, was due back in late September. Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver has promised to release the findings in the coming weeks.

The government wants to use the data in the report to support its case about how oilsands-derived fuels fare against those from Europe.

Peter Julian, the New Democrats’ energy and natural resources critic, said he does not expect the advertising campaign to change many minds about Canada’s environmental record abroad.

“The Harper government has a PR problem, because they haven’t taken action on the oil sands (and) put in place measures that ensure polluters pay, ensure we have safe pipelines, ensuring that we are lessening as much as possible the impact in that region in Alberta,” Julian said. “Because we’re not seeing action from the Harper government, there’s a negative perception of Canada as a whole … Advertising is not going to change that.”

Foreign Service officers are expected to be consulted in targeted countries, and feedback will be collected at embassies and missions across the world. The government is also considering issuing another contract for public opinion research on the campaign.

The $24-million pricetag makes it the costliest advertising campaign NRCan has undertaken in recent years. The department spent just $5.25 million in advertising buys in 2011-2012.

The new advertisements are expected to be rolled out in at least one international jurisdiction by January 2014, with the full campaign in place by April 2014.

– With a file from Jason Fekete, Postmedia News.

$24 million to advertise your own now-failing projects—take a hint maybe? And the correct terminology is “TARsands”, mmkay?

Let’s keep fighting this environmentally hyper-destructive development bullshit. An economy built on such degradation isn’t sustainable and it isn’t worth having.

"Cameron now has the audacity to suggest that perhaps the former British empire was not altogether shameful. “I think there is an enormous amount to be proud of in what the British empire did and was responsible for,” he said this week, during his Indian trip. “But of course there were bad events as well as good events. The bad events we should learn from and the good events we should celebrate.”

It may be that the opinions of Niall Ferguson are having some effect on people such as Cameron. Ten years ago, his book, Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World, and its TV version, suggested that for much of the world Britain was the engine of modernity and therefore more beneficial than harmful. He admitted its grave flaws (racism, economic exploitation and violence, for a start) but urged us to think about the many forms of creativity that Britain also distributed around the world. It pioneered free trade and spread the rule of law over vast areas. [the “yay!” is implicit]

The chronically leftist London Review of Books called Ferguson’s book a “panegyric to British colonialism.” But Ferguson argued that, though it often failed to live up to its own ideals, colonialism was much preferable to any imaginable alternative.

As an old admirer of McGeachy, I can’t help but be pleased that his sensible ideas have slowly become acceptable and may eventually becomes fashionable.”

- Robert Fulford, "Colonialism: Revisited"

Actually Robert Fulford, colonialism was and still is shameful, and Cameron should have apologized. Honestly though, I don’t even know what to do with this article except to show you guys the responses. I’m also just gonna go ahead and assume the commentators are mostly white beneficiaries of past and ongoing colonialist practices.

Here’s his email if you want to add your own response: robert.fulford@utoronto.ca

» Canada: Abusive Policing, Neglect Along ‘Highway of Tears’ via Human Rights Watch

The 89-page report, “Those Who Take Us Away: Abusive Policing and Failures in Protection of Indigenous Women and Girls in Northern British Columbia, Canada,” documents both ongoing police failures to protect indigenous women and girls in the north from violence and violent behavior by police officers against women and girls. Police failures and abuses add to longstanding tensions between the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and indigenous communities in the region, Human Rights Watch said. The Canadian government should establish a national commission of inquiry into the murders and disappearances of indigenous women and girls, including the impact of police mistreatment on their vulnerability to violence in communities along Highway 16, which has come to be called northern British Columbia’s “Highway of Tears.”

image

“The threat of domestic and random violence on one side, and mistreatment by RCMP officers on the other, leaves indigenous women in a constant state of insecurity,” said Meghan Rhoad, women’s rights researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Where can they turn for help when the police are known to be unresponsive and, in some cases, abusive.”

Human Rights Watch researchers were struck by the fear expressed by women they interviewed. The women’s reactions were comparable to those Human Rights Watch has found in post-conflict or post-transition countries, where security forces have played an integral role in government abuses and enforcement of authoritarian policies.

read more

The True North Strong and Free…

» Idle No More protest to block Alberta highway

For all of you not from Canada who think we’re all hunky-dory and shit up here go read the comments sections of mainstream media articles about Idle No More. We got a shit ton of ignorant rednecks up here too and listening to their bullshit does a lot to distance me from my “nationality” (and I would like to note that you can be a redneck without being ignorant). Some of us are pretty awesome, but we’ve been flying under the friendly flag for far too long and we’ve gotten pretty good even at deluding ourselves into believing our own self-perpetuated hype.

The polite and tolerant Canadian is a myth.

danspeerin:

Canada Gets Cocky About Surviving the End of the World!

Ignorance will survive any apocalypse. (Can we leave the Mayans alone now?)

danspeerin:

Canada Gets Cocky About Surviving the End of the World!

Ignorance will survive any apocalypse.

(Can we leave the Mayans alone now?)

» Canada, it’s time. We need to fix this in our generation.

makeanewbeginning:

Today is December 16, 2012 and Chief Theresa Spence has been on a hunger strikefor six days.

Contrary to what some media outlets are reporting, she is not doing this only to protest Bill C-45 or even the deplorable treatment her community has received since declaring an emergency last year. She has vowed to continue her hunger strike until the prime minister, the Queen or a representative, agrees to sit down in good faith with First Nations leaders to rebuild what has become a fractured and abusive relationship. She is staying in a tipi on Victoria Island, which sits below Parliament and the Supreme Court of Canada.

Many native people across the country have been fasting to show their solidarity with Chief Spence, including Dene National Chief Bill Erasmus. Just search the twitter hashtag#TheresaSpence to get a sense of how much support this woman has from our peoples.

The Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs has issued a statement asking for as many people as possible to converge on Ottawa to support Chief Spence, at to demand that action be taken now to deal with long ignored indigenous concerns. The Assembly of First Nations published an open letter to the Governor General and to Stephen Harper to meet with Chief Spence saying:

“The Government of Canada has not upheld nor fulfilled its responsibilities to First Nations, as committed to by the Crown including at the Crown-First Nations Gathering January 2012.  Canada has not upheld the Honour of the Crown in its dealings with First Nations, as evidenced in its inadequate and inequitable funding relationships with our Nations and its ongoing actions in bringing forward legislative and policy changes that will directly impact on the Inherent and Treaty Rights of First Nations. Treaties are international in nature and further indigenous rights are human rights, both collective and individual and must be honoured and respected.”

The Idle No More movement has been busy, with actions occurring all across the country in support of Chief Spence and in support of her message that the relationship between indigenous peoples and the Crown needs serious mending, now.  Not all of these actions are being reported, so if you want to know what’s actually going on, it’s worth your while to follow the #idlenomore hashtag on twitter. People are protesting peacefully and legally blockading roads as well as staging ‘teach ins’.  Many more actions are being planned.

We are not going away. These issues are not going to go away. Canada, it’s time. We have to fix this relationship in our generation.

We all know that reading comments sections can be hazardous for your mental health, but there are some themes that continue to come up again and again any time native people are discussed in the media, and we need to address these beliefs.  I have been trying my best on this blog to refute the myths and stereotypes, but I don’t have all the free time in the world that I’d like, and so my ‘myth-busting list‘ remains unfinished.

Nonetheless, I am asking for the help of Canadians to combat these ugly lies. I make this plea, because these lies allow people like Stephen Harper to ignore a hunger strike. These lies allow people to throw up their hands in disgust and claim that native people are freeloading whiners who need to shut up and go away. These lies allow a nation to ignore its own history, to erase its own volition, to believe that someone else will fix this problem.

Read more

(Source: monchuinne)

Canada, where “progress” is spelled “regress.”

Canada, where “progress” is spelled “regress.”

Justin Trudeau’s Leadership Announcement speech via the CBC.

What do you guys think? Yes, it’s kind of nice to look at someone whose young and nice to look at speaking as a possible Canadian representative - but beyond that. A lot of grandiose claims at patriotic waxing without a lot of depth and concrete examples, but hey I guess that’s a coming out speech. He harped on the middle class so much I thought I was watching American politics and I did like his reference to our above-ground resources. Yet I feel if you’re going to say the other two main political parties’ economic plans are faulty and ideologically driven then you should at least somewhat explain what your own would look like.

Big ups for mentioning how Canada has failed first nations and promising to work more with them, though it’s pretty terrible that I have to congratulate a prospective leader of this country for doing so. I also really liked his reference to the Conservatives battle against science and evidence-based policy:”And as we face these challenges, the only ideology that must guide us is evidence. Hard, scientific facts and data. It may seem revolutionary in today’s Ottawa, but instead of inventing the facts to justify the policies, we will create policy based on facts.”

But beyond that I wasn’t really over-awed. He’s still got a few years to sort his shit out and rebuild the party, and I still think their getting decimated in the last election was probably one of the best things that could have happened to the party. If all else fails he’ll at least get Quebec - sorry NDP, you can’t have imagined that love affair would last.

read the text of the speech here.

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