Monthly Archives: December 2009

If harper Prorogues

Others in the blogosphere point to the even stronger rumours that harper is planning to cowardly prorogue parliament until after the fascist spectacle of the Olympics in order to avoid public accountability for his possible complicity in war crimes in Afghanistan.

This is unacceptable.

If harper does pursue this detestable course of action of course the opposition parties must join to force an election at the soonest possible opportunity when the new session of parliament opens. By his actions in Afghanistan, by his partisan leaking of documents (the secrecy of which he has argued is vital for “national security”), by his contempt for the will of the majority in parliament in refusing to hand over said documents, and by myriad other ways, harper has lost the right to any claim in this nation’s confidence in his ability to govern this country.

stephen harper is clearly insane and unfit for public life.

But if parliament is suspended, we, the decent, sane majority of Canadians have to put the pressure on him and his lackeys. I should add, or clarify, that it will be the decent, sane, engaged, concerned minority that must keep the pressure on. Because while the vast majority of Canadians are intelligent, decent, sane people, only a minority are dedicated enough and informed enough to grasp the gravity of this threat to our political system and our way of life. Too many of us are lulled into a consumerist cocoon of ignorance and apathy. The dedicated minority must go out into our communities and preach to people outside the choir about the seriousness of this crisis, the horrible ramifications of allowing business-as-usual with this twisted freak harper and his gang of foaming psychopaths.

We must lay down the case for the coming election, the seriousness of the issues involved, the horrible consequences of allowing these crimes to go unpunished.

And while we’re laying the groundwork for the ultimate repudiation of the political bowel-movement that is Canadian “conservatism,” and for the permanent destruction of the Stupid Party of Canada, we must make every effort to let our mainstream media and political institutions know exactly how we feel about the serial travesties of business-as-usual.

The Afghanistan debacle. The world financial meltdown. Ecological collapse. Increased poverty and homelessness. Evil in Haiti. Anti-Aboriginal racism. The destruction of our public healthcare sysem. On and on it goes.

This cycle of arrogant stupidity, … capitalist greed presenting itself as wisdom about “harsh realities” has had time enough to prove itself and it has failed.

And the most fanatical practitioners of this insanity, the so-called “Conservative Party of Canada” must be made to understand [albeit temporarily, given the limitations of their mental faculties] what detestable, freakish vermin they are. If we “liberal [sic] elitists” used to look down our noses at these morons, it was because they were such repulsively stupid, dangerously stupid morons.

We will not stop our work to transform our societies into ecologically sustainable, sane economies just because you’re an oil-industry shill or an ignorant, delusional consumerist.

We will not remove equal rights for people of non-heterosexual orientations because you’re a fanatical adherent to some imaginary, sex-obsessed deity or because you’re a twisted closet-case.

We will not drop the call for a public inquiry into war crimes to enable your racist, imperialist blood-lust.

Your day has passed.

A Coalition Government Could Obtain a Public Inquiry Into Torture

Gotta run. But I’ll be back to flesh this out. I think the post title will get people thinking though.

There are countries that pretty blatantly torture people and there are countries that at least make the effort to say that they do not torture people. And then, of course, there are countries that don’t torture people period.

Canada, thanks to the harpercons, is now in the first of those categories. For legal purposes, the harpercons and their drooling-idiot supporters don’t come right out and admit their complicity in torture. But at the same time, they constructed a prisoner-transfer process that was designed to provide them with plausible deniability as to what we knew about the people we handed over. At the same time they’ve been pretty shameless about blocking access to see what they’ve been doing, what they’ve been saying, what happened and when they knew about it. And, finally, they respond to genuine questions about Canada’s adherence to its obligations under international law by yammering about how our prisoners were all vermin who deserved whatever it is they might have gotten and how people who want to ask questions are all troop-hating traitors.

I’ll repeat: “Plausible deniability” is no excuse. The harpercon’s attempt at being smart has back-fired. It was determined in the Tokyo War Crimes trials that if someone was in a position to know and didn’t know that war crimes were being committed, then it was determined that those officials were guilty for not having made the effort to know what was going on under their watch.

There is nothing to debate here. The harpercons are guilty of war crimes. Our government is guilty of war crimes. We, as Canadians, are guilty of war crimes.

But we have a choice. We can take our country back. We can take it back from the moral deficients, the mental freaks who shriek so loudly on the internet and in our newspapers, about how torture is justified. About how the rule of law has an on/off switch. We can take our country back from these imbeciles by forcing our political-legal system to hold the harpercons to account for their crimes.

And I say we should make this point in time the moment when we made our stand because this is the way for us to get the most bang for our buck. This isn’t something that can be debated ad nauseum. This isn’t something that requires a lot of digging and investigating or anything. Right here, right now, we can send the whole harpercon front bench to PRISON and there is no way out of it for them.

In all honesty, global warming, our abuse of the First Nations people, and the economic crisis are bigger issues than this. But convicting harper on war crimes charges is easier than shutting-down the Tar Sands. Convicting the harpercons is simpler than reversing our policies on First Nations issues. Convicting these scumbags will be simpler than arguing for a sane economic policy. And, furthermore, putting the harpercons behind bars will make working on those other issues immeasurably easier.

Recently, the opposition parties passed a parliamentary resolution calling for a public inquiry into this issue but the govenment is not bound by the will of the representatives of a majority of the people of this country. So be it. One way to get the will of the majority’s representatives imposed is to make them the government. If there is no other way to do this, then let us have the opposition introduce a measure of non-confidence in this government, and if we have to have an election on this issue, let us have it.

Let us make this an election on whether or not Canada is a nation that commits war crimes or not.

If that’s what is necessary to take our country back then let us fight it on this issue. As I said, there are other concerns that Canadians have, but nothing is as clear-cut as this. Nothing is so easy to rectify as this. When it is so simple it is incumbent upon us to do what is necessary. Let this be a contest between the decent people who believe that Canada is supposed to be a decent place, and the freaks who believe that it’s okay to torture as long as it happens to your enemies or you contract it out.

Doesn’t our political system claim “the rule of law” as one of its fundamental values? Even if we believe this claim is a sham, we must admit that at least they agree that this pretence must be upheld if they’re going to claim our respect for their authority. Well, if there is simply no way out of the fact that they committed war crimes, then there is simply no way out for them than to face the consequences. When something as blatant as this happens and they try to fob it off, they are fobbing off the basis of their own legitimacy. If we can have a fight about this, then there is no way that they can avoid defeat. And this isn’t smoking a joint, or speeding on the highway, or taking a bribe even. This is TORTURE. This is INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS LAW. If the rule of law should apply to governments, shouldn’t it at least apply here?

Ah, but what about the Liberals? Sadly, this is the debased state of our political culture. We cannot move against the harpercons unless we agree to allow the Liberals (who violated international law in Haiti, who first got us into the Afghanistan debacle, who oversaw the first violations of human rights after 9-11/2001) to go free. Our political culture is such that we cannot go against both of these criminal gangs because enough Canadian voters support one or the other of them to make it impossible. (I was prepared, when the Liberals had a majority, to propose that the NDP work with the CPC and the BQ to investigate Liberal crimes in Haiti. To my eternal shame, I got so far as briefly circulating a petition before life and work pressures made me think that Haiti’s calvary had to wait. Then, the Liberals fell, the harpercons came to power, and the moment passed.)

But we could argue this: That it is worth it to make this concession if it means destroying the harpercons, who are so toxic for Canada’s political culture, if it means re-asserting that Canada is more the product of its decent citizens than of its morons and psychopaths, if it means that we get to set a precedent for future prime ministers tempted into following the USA into another such abomination, that they might get in over their heads and find themselves responsible for and liable for actions such as war crimes.

[Please note: I’m certain that given the chance the NDP could be just as lazy and callous about human rights as any other party. I’m also pretty sure that Bloq politicians are no angels when it comes to First Nations issues that conflict with Quebecois sovereignity. To their credit, the NDP has the natural intelligence and the courage to have rejected the Afghan “mission” from the get-go. But this non-immunity from corruption is just the point: Our politicians can only go as far as the Canadian people will let them go. If WE decide, as a people, that something like handing over innocent people to suspected torturers is not acceptable, and that there are consequences for doing so, then they will not do it! It’s up to us to change the culture so that Canadian politicians do not debase us like this in the future!]

If there is an election, let us fight it. Afghanistan is worth an election. Torture is worth an election. Let us have an election where the big subject is whether the cynical abuse of “national security” is no big deal. Where selective leaking of documents to discredit a courageous whistle-blower is fine by us. Where dumping people as quickly as we can into the hands of murderers and rapists is what this country is all about. Where making insurgents fight all the harder against the Canadian Forces because defeat and incarceration means being castrated, blinded, crippled, or some other horror, is “supporting the troops.” Where throwing billions of dollars and over one-hundred Canadian lives down a rat-hole is sound foreign policy. Let us debate this evil policy. Let us debate this evil government.

To conclude: If we do not think an election is a realistic possibility, then we MUST come up with some more viable strategy. This is the image of our country at stake here. This is whether or tax-dollars and our silence support the rape of the children of impoverished Afghan peasants at the hands of a brutal, corrupt government defended by our soldiers and our soldiers’ lives.

If we decide that there’s nothing that can be done, then nothing will be done. And we will be signalling that when Canada signs covenants against torture, it’s meaningless. That we concede that the rule of law does not apply to our own governments. [In a case as clear as this, giving the harpercons a pass out of defeatism is stating just that.]

The harpercon Government’s Response to the Torture Scandal Thus Far

harpercon Government: “There’s nothing in Richard Colvin’s memos that indicates anything wrong. The fact that Colvin says otherwise shows he doesn’t remember what he, himself wrote.”

Committee on Afghanistan: “Can we see the memos?”

harpercon Government: “No.”

Three generals, including the imbecile Hillier: “We’ve looked at the memos that the committee hasn’t seen (and which, technically, we shouldn’t have seen either) and we’re proud to say that our behaviour, like our character, is unimpeachable.”

Committee on Afghanistan: “Can we see those memos?”

harpercon Government: (Snicker!) “No.” (Snicker, giggle, snort, chuckle.)

Christie Belchford and Rosie DiMoron: “Ungh-blahhhh!!!! Oannnggghhhhh.” [drooling, weird eye-rolling] “HOOOOOOOT!!!!!” “EEEH! EEEEH!!!! EEEHHH!!!” “Angh!!!” [Translation: “My oh my, but aren’t we two of the most scuzziest scuz-ball scuzzies that you ever did see?”]

Committee on Afghanistan: “Can we see the memos that you leaked to one of those brain dead stupid hacks?”

harpercon Government: “No.”

stephen harper: “It’s detestable that the Opposition is calling our brave soldiers ‘torturers’ and ‘war criminals!’ I am proud to hide stand behind the troops who are definitely not guilty of war crimes. I didn’t turn those prisoners over to be, … um, … whatever might have happened to them! Some soldiers did! And they’re NOT war criminals!”

Yeah, we’ve had enough of this stupid bullshit.