McFee's Musings

June 22, 2010

G8/G20 UPDATE 2

Filed under: Politics — dwightmcfee @ 10:51 pm

Get ready citizens of the world. This meeting of the satraps, courtiers, panderers, crony capitalists, authoritarians and dictators is shaping up as a post first world war 1 economic collapse that visited like a plague and was sought only by the political elites pandering to the orthodox, conventional ‘wisdom’ of the economic ‘market’ of the time.

The austerity measures are to placate ‘the market’. After WW1 austerity was the supposed answer and we should all know were that led. The rise of fascism. The first wave of Corporatism. The second we are now living in. In case you haven’t noticed.

But our political elites including our Great Leader, who is an orthodox trained economist, advocates, and you just wait if he wins the next election, fiscal austerity. And what do you think that translates to: more tax breaks for financial services and more cuts to civil and social society.

The post WW1 descent into a world wide depression was caused by corporate pressure on politicians to provide no services to the populous. To have control of the government. And having got what they wanted they turned the world into the middle ages. Corporatism was a failure which is why democracy and regulation rose out of the ashes of the depression.

But here we are again. Our politicians are running scared of the boys who bought them even after having bailed them out. You’d think they would use their leverage for the common good. That these pigs of profit have no compunction at twisting the circumstances to our detriment is our own folly in the end.

After this meeting, not of the G 20, but of the representatives of corporatism and Silvio Berlusconi is the pinnacle of the trash heap, get ready for the collapse of even more civil and social institutions.

The world is in post WW1 mode ready to be pilloried by the economic determinism of the last 20 years that coersively implies, led by the mystical soothsayer economists, that we can’t do anything about this, we should only do what we’re told. Like cancer patients in the Pharma/Cancer industrial complex citizens there have only three options, chemical, surgical and radiation. All kill you and refuse to acknowledge other options. But the system fulfills, and perpetuates itself, at the cost of lives and other healthy options. Just as this meeting will self fulfill and perpetuate policies that visit hardship and death on populations around the world. All in the service of corporatism.

The shamans divining and disseminating the commandments from the gods of the market will give us the lowdown and orders this week.

Unfortunately this is not post WW1. This is the advanced sickness of corporatism. Is it terminal for the citizen and democracy? Don’t take the poison, and we don’t need surgery or nuclear radiation. But we could use some skepticism and common sense and ethics and humanity.

Is there a naturopath in the house?!

Well, yes there is. There are choices.

Take personhood away from the corporation. Make individuals in the corporation responsible for the corporation’s decisions. You kill people with a bad drug you go up on involuntary manslaughter.

Greece under Salon had the ‘Great Unburdening’ ware all debt was wiped clean. In our version that would be all personal and national debt. Greece survived for another 300 years.

All pricing of goods would take into account their total cost: not only manufacturing etc. but their environmental impact. To make a profit you have to produce something.

Unearned income would be taxed at 50%.

Just a few suggestions for the Great Leaders of the Corpocracy to consider.

Good Luck.

June 14, 2010

Brian Mulroney: Constitutionally incapable of being honest with himself and a country!

Filed under: Politics — dwightmcfee @ 9:24 am

Harsh words I know. I have been scolded by friend and foe for this harsh assessment of the former Prime Minister. I think the characterization has merit.

As a result of the Oliphant Inquiry and it’s findings the punditocracy and plutocracy have been dishonourably attempting to admonish with feigned umbrage the former PM and at the same time burnish the legacy of Lyin’ Brian, irrespective of his “inappropriate behaviour” as voiced by Justice Oliphant. Uber conservative Andrew Cohen was upset at the damage that Mulroney has done to the cause of conservatism. I guess Mr. Cohen has forgotten the real disservice to the conservative party done by the boy from Bae Comeau: wiping out the party in 93 and leaving us with his spawn: Manning, Harris, Harper. Most editorial comment has focused on the Mulroney ‘legacy’ that will survive the great man’s avarice, hubris and transgressions. Well let’s take a look at that ‘Legacy’ that the Main Stream Media and Mr. Mulroney are so intent on propagating.

The two big ones that Mulroney has been extolled for are the fight against Apartheid and the Free Trade Agreement/ North American Free Trade Agreement.

Give the man his due. The fight against Apartheid was important. Mulroney convinced the Iron Lady Margaret Thatcher and the Teflon President Ronald Reagan ( who railed against the Civil Rights Acts in the middle 60’s and against Martin Luther King Day ) to concede that Apartheid had out lived it’s time on earth. Brian-come-lately jumped on board a world wide effort, particularly the Europeans, that had been hammering the South African Government for years. It was becoming obvious that the regime was surviving only as a result of American and British backing. The South African government had become a major arms exporter to any dictator with blood money and on any side of the cold war. Embargoes had begun to destroy the economy and the only ones out of step with ‘freedom’ and human rights were the Capitalist Kong and the Nanny-run Britons.
Mulroney hogged the stage on the file and was given the credit by the big two for the fall of Apartheid.

However opportunistic this was by Mulroney, Canada as a middle power was situated on non-military issues to have enough influence to move an issue of this civil import in the world community. Ah, the good days when there was a modicum of independent foreign policy or what appeared to be sovereign foreign policy.

But there was a trade off. We scratch your Human Rights and ego back and you scratch our foreign and economic policy back. Meaning that Canada now acquiesced in economic policy to fighting inflation instead of full employment as well as have a see no evil policy regarding the mining of Nicaraguan harbors and full support in the UN against the Evil Empire. Underlying these policies secret feelers were being sent out by the corporate communities of Canada and the US about the potential ‘freeing’ of capital and financial services.
So, give Mulroney a certain amount of credit for helping to dismantle a despicable and inhuman regime.

Brian Mulroney won an election denying he was planning a free trade agreement and that Canada had to lower tariff’s to compete. However tariff’s on goods were almost completely gone between the US and Canada as a result of the GATT, The General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs, the world body overseeing international trade.

The US under Reagan, Bush 1 and a protectionist, nativist Congress had a different strategy: not wanting to be handcuffed with world ‘rules of the road’, After all this is America and nobody hamstrings our ability to do what we want: therefore trade policy would consist of picking off countries one at a time in bilateral agreements, setting precedents as each agreement was made. This provided the US with emmence leverage as each country supplicated itself to get into the American market. There was a great to do about this strategy at the time and when Canada was the first to cave instead of standing with the rest of the first world, the future of international agreements was in jeopardy. It allowed the US to pick successive countries off one at a time demanding the new ‘globalism’ to take root. As we have seen this trade policy has worked to the detriment of control over trade world wide. For instance three companies now control 70% of the growing/breeding, production and distribution of beef, chickens, and grains in the WORLD. Successive rounds of international trade agreements have consistently faltered.

The real deceit of the FTA and NAFTA is that they were not agreement’s on trade. And they were not free. “Long before either treaty was signed all three countries were approaching virtual free trade”. These agreements were about ‘freeing’ the movement of capital/financial services from transparency and oversight and “freeing the transnational corporation and its managers from geographical realities and obligations”. Brian Mulroney was a corporate lawyer and corporate chief executive. What else did people think he would do? All through the debate over ‘free trade’ the main stream media shat over the opposition. How could they be against free trade. It’s free as in Freedom and trade as in prosperity, stupid. Only fools and dreamers can be against it.

Well the opposition was right. They weren’t fools, they were pragmatist’s with common sense. Several studies have shown that free trade has been either neutral or minimally positive and other studies a negative impact. For Canada the effects have been loss of sovereignty, loss of influence in the world as we are seen as a satellite of the US in foreign, economic, cultural and human rights policy. And loss of jobs! And a middle class existence. And the collapse of the world economies!

This is the major legacy of Brian Mulroney: A deceitful agreement that sold the inevitability of corporatism behind a mask of populism.

Never mentioned in this belated revisionism are the legacies of a 580 billion accrued debt ( 70 billion from Trudeau as a result of the 70’s oil crisis) that had to be dealt with through draconian reductions in the nineties to social, cultural and civic programs. Unemployment Insurance surpluses from workers in the 90’s payed down the debt as those contributions went into general revenue. The beginning and acceleration of the decline in manufacturing happens under Mulroney. The long slow choking of the CBC started with Mulroney. The anti union rhetoric/pro corporate elevation to god like status began under Mulroney. The fracturing of the country accelerated under Mulroney as a result of the Meech and Charlottetown constitutional fiascoes. The Business Council on National Issues, now the Canadian Conference of Chief Executives became the defacto cabinet, purporting to have the interests of the nation at heart. Mulroney tripled the Privy Council, created the Presidential Prime Minister-ship, scoffing at the supremacy of parliament which continues today in the Harper regime. The decline of the 70’s push for the establishment of a cultural industry started under Mulroney with cuts to the Canada Council and the reneging of a promise for more screen time for Canadian film product on the American owned screens in the country.

An infamous story from the cultural world serves to illustrate the Mulroney Pander: Flora MacDonald was the Federal Culture Minister and was about to introduce a bill in Parliament proscribing that 15% of screen time in movie theaters had to be Canadian product. Similar to radio Can-con play for Canadian musicians. Jack Valenti, President of the powerful American Motion Picture Association flew up to Ottawa, flew into McDonald’s office in a rage and demanded that the legislation never see the light of day. Flora reminded him that he was in another country. Valenti then went to Brian’s office and told him that if he didn’t withdraw the legislation there would be no free trade deal, movie theater’s would be shut down and that he had enough influence that he would shut down the border. ( Remember that other than Military Arm’s the largest US export at the time and now was American film product and that the AMPA considered Canada a domestic market as a result of a 1948 under the table deal with a conservative government that allowed Hollywood the rights to treat Canada as a domestic market, in return allowing Canada to have a government run National Broadcasting System, the CBC.) The next day the legislation was gone and Mulroney disavowed that there had ever been any such idea. These were a few of former Prime Minister’s “unintended consequences”.

And on Mulroney’s last day in office the friend of Corporatism allowed the very rich to ship off billions of dollars to off shore accounts tax free for 20 years costing billions in tax revenue. As the PM once said, “ you dance with the girl that brought you”.

Brian Mulroney was a harbinger of the beginning of, as Peter Scowen iterates in the Saturday, June 12 edition of the Globe and Mail, a harbinger of The Great Disillusionment or The Endarkenment. Mulroney was only the messenger who sold his soul. In this age where “freedom of expression has been bastardized into the right to take no responsibility for one’s actions or words”, Mulroney’s obsequious performance at the Oliphant Inquiry, ( Nobody asked me if Schrieber gave me any money ) serves to illustrate the sheer overt stupidity and arrogance of the corporate elite that have hijacked what little of ‘democracy’ that was envisioned by the Enlightenment in the furtherance of socializing the cost and privatizing the profits of huge transnational corporations.

In a letter to the Globe and Mail editorial page Mulroney’s attorney states that the Oliphant Inquiry cleared Mulroney of the accusation that he was paid off for the acquisition by Air Canada of the European Air Bus and shouldn’t have to return the 2 million dollars awarded to him for defamation of character. This is specious. The Inquiry was not given the mandate to investigate the Air Bus Affair.

Historians, as they are want to do and have already done, will white wash the Mulroney years and their subsequent reverberations. Already the talking heads are comparing the ‘inappropriate’ behaviour of Mulroney to the Clinton/Lewinsky affair. Ridiculous! Clinton got a blow job. Mulroney fucked a country and got caught with his hand in the till.

The reality of Mulroney is that he was desperate to be loved by the richest and most powerful. They lived in the United States and the capitals of Europe. Mulroney convinced himself he was loved by the elites when he was only being used. Being rewarded with corporate directorships etc. wasn’t enough. Like an alcoholic, which he was, it was never enough. Addiction comes in many guises, power being one of them. Brian Mulroney is one of those elites defined in The Doubter’s Companion, a dictionary of aggressive common sense by John Ralston Saul under the definition of Canada: no. 5

Burdened by the laziest elite of any developed nation; people who have made fortunes by selling off the country’s resources and by working for more energetic foreigners. They are most comfortable on their knees, admiring those from larger countries who have purchased them.

Brian Mulroney was a want a be American with a drinking problem who disappointed and hurt immeasurably and irrevocably the fabric of a visionary country. Worse, he was one of the enablers of the Age of The Great Disillusionment leading to the Great Endarkenment. The mention of his name in Canada is synonymous with the corruption of politics, lying and hubris.

The Legacy of a Liar

May he be banished to Palm Beach, Florida.

G8/20 UPDATE

Filed under: Politics — dwightmcfee @ 9:15 am

Are we having fun yet kids! Million dollar indoor Muskoka ponds, 122 million dollar sound guns, half million dollar Huntsville gazebos and on and on! This is going to be a great tourist promotion for Toronto! And if you believe that I have an island you might want to buy. Or, oh yea, how about announcing an untendered 16 billion dollar F-35 fighter plane purchase just before the big press conference.

Some interesting sidelights:
Why use the convention center when you got an empty CBC building across the street for the event. It has sound stages that can be turned into anything you want at an in house price. Oh yeah, were into the private sector.
How about using the Exhibition grounds. Self enclosed for easy security and there’s a lake right in front of the grounds. Easy access to hotels. Oh yeah, public space that won’t cost much.

And don’t forget that the big cheeses in the financial district are sending their worker bees to hives that have been specially adapted in Mississauga and environs so they won’t be interrupted in their daily foraging for honey. Guess who’s going to pay for that? You bet ya! It is a cost of doing business and will be a nice extra tax write off! Thanks Steven Harper! But the small businesses downtown? Nada!

The gall of The Gang of Deceit: To pass this off as a Tourist Attraction! They will never give us an accounting of the true cost. You can bet your ass that every level of enforcement has padded and padded their budgets. This is the way the law and order faction of the ‘new conservative’ party is going to get their ‘fig’ or bachshesh or grift or pay off!

Go to the alternative summit at Massey Hall. That’s were democracy will be exercised!

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