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Thursday, November 23, 2006

Harper Sets Stage for European Style "Canadian Union"

Folks, it’s pretty much a done deal. Quebec will be recognized as a “Nation within a united Canada”, but where does this leave the rest of us? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s a bad thing in fact I like the idea. It sort of smacks of a “European Union” situation and maybe that’s what Canada needs right now. I can’t help but envision a scenario where we all use the same currency and essentially have the same constitutional rights but where there is room for independence and control of localized matters such as immigration. Not a bad plan, in fact I heartily endorse it.

The reason I like it so much is that it gives Quebec the recognition it truly deserves as a distinct people. They’ve been fighting for this for a very long time, they deserve it and they are welcome to it with a heart and a half. They ARE without a doubt a distinct people, just like the people of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Once this new definition of Quebec is passed it may well set a precedent where by other parts of Canada can opt to be recognized as well and nobody has a stronger case than Newfoundland and Labrador. Here we find a place that was not even a part of Canada until 1949 and was once even a sovereign nation of its own. Who can deny them the right to become a “nation within a united Canada” as well? To do so would be idiotic under the circumstances.

What about Alberta? Alberta would likely have a case. They are certainly different from other parts of Canada with their rodeo’s and cowboy gear not to mention an economy that’s so distinct it’s almost frightening. I suppose as well that not having a definable culture of their own, other than what has been imported from around the world or as “America Lite”, Ontario could be called a Nation. I mean the people there certainly have nothing in common with those in any other part of Canada. What about our First Nations People (hell their title even has the word “Nation” in it) and what about the Green Gables crew in PEI or the Bluenosers in Nova Scotia? I’m sure they can make a case.

So, where does this all leave us? Personally the longer I think about it the more I like it. Over time perhaps this seemingly small move on the part of Stephen Harper will actually be what Canada needs to survive. Who knows, maybe we’ll find ourselves with a group of Nations all working together for the common good rather than a group of oppressed provinces biting and clawing at each other on a daily basis.

As distinct and individual Nations united as one it would of course be necessary for all of these nations to be given an equal say in the happenings of the new union. As things now stand Ontario and Quebec account for the vast majority of political power in the House of Commons and essentially control Canada, often to the detriment of the rest of the provinces. This could not continue to be the case in a world where distinct Nations must work together. In this new world each Nation would need to be on an equal footing, perhaps with one vote per nation on issues of common concern.

I like it. I like it a lot.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I too enjoy jingoistic whitebread nativesism movements equally as much.

mt.pearligan said...

Hey anonymous, which anonymous are you exactly?

Anonymous said...

You're not kidding that Newfoundland is distinct........but I wouldn't be bragging about it if I were you.

Anonymous said...

Anonomous - please do not be such a coward. When you make such an blanket statement, please explain which way you want us to take it. Then we can either say Thank You or rebut what you said.

Anon - please read this Weekend's Globe and Mail. In the Report on Business Section there are several pages on the success of Inco.

You will see how we were connived here in NewfoundlandLabrador on that deal.

In one part of the paper it is said that Inco's Goro Project is going through a lot of problems with vandalism. It is taking a long time to get it off the ground. And in the Business Section, the story goes that the Voisey's Bay Project is the first great story of the 21st Century.

I don't know if you remember the stories that were spread back during the contract negotiations day about how Goro was going to be so easy and NewfoundlandLabrador better mind its Ps and Qs or Inco would put more emphasis on Goro, if you don't remember I do. When things aren't so transparent, what do we do? We can only appear to be a stupid people. The electorate of the other nine provinces are quite aware of the deceitfullness that goes on during contract making and there is no way that the wool would have been pulled over their eyes. Despite the fact a lot of us shouted out that the contract should not be signed, it got signed anyway, nobody listened and, I, for one, don't feel good at all about it.

When the rest of Canadians look at such projects and how we got screwed, I can hear them plainly saying how stupid are those Newfoundlanders/Labradorians, they certainly are a distinct people, aren't they? I would suspect when you say that we are distinct, the latter type of distinct is what you are referring to.

WJM said...

And in the Business Section, the story goes that the Voisey's Bay Project is the first great story of the 21st Century.

Good. The province needs lots more business success stories, rather than failures.

Anonymous said...

WJM

You would call a contract that sees Sudbury, Ontario and Thompson, Manitoba, 2 small cities in other provinces where there are plenty of jobs get to live another 15 years or more because of this ore that is shipped out of Labrador, and Labrador which is crying out for more people, as you know more people in an area makes everything more competitive and as a result it makes things more economic for the area. For instance more people in Labrador would make air fares cheaper, infrastructure better as there would be more need for infrastructure if there are more people, etc. etc.

WJM - The province would have had a better success story had Labrador become the beneficiary of that ore to be smelted there. Your reasoning is very absurd WJM. I can't believe you are saying this. Please explain the reasons why you think all of this work shouldn't have been done in Labrador, in other words, explain why Labrador should not have been the primary beneficiary of all of the components of that Voisey's Bay contract. If you wouldn't mind compiling something as to the reasons you are oriented in thinking this way, maybe you can explain to me, and with the right reasonings, and maybe, just maybe I will come on side with your way of thinking.

WJM said...

You would call a contract that

I would call it what? You need a good editor.

sees Sudbury, Ontario and Thompson, Manitoba, 2 small cities in other provinces where there are plenty of jobs get to live another 15 years

(1) Where does this "15 years" figure come from?

(2) Are they then going to die?

or more because of this ore that is shipped out of Labrador,

No "ore" is shipped out of Labrador, only concentrate. There is a mill, in addition to the mine, at Voisey's Bay.

and Labrador which is crying out for more people, as you know more people in an area makes everything more competitive

I am not sure what you mean by this, "more people in an area makes everything more competitive".

What does that mean?

infrastructure better as there would be more need for infrastructure if there are more people, etc. etc.

The need for the infrastructure in Labrador is not contingent on the population. The same need - a highway across Labrador - would exist whether the population was half, or double, the current value.

The province would have had a better success story had Labrador become the beneficiary of that ore to be smelted there.

And we had great support from our supposed fellow-provincial-citizens on that.

I remember, back in 1996, being called "grabby" and "greedy" for daring to suggest that Labrador benefit, before Argentia did, from the development of Voisey's Bay.

"All one province", we were told over and over again. "All one province."

Your reasoning is very absurd WJM. I can't believe you are saying this. Please explain the reasons why you think all of this work shouldn't have been done in Labrador, in other words, explain why Labrador should not have been the primary beneficiary of all of the components of that Voisey's Bay contract.

I never said anything to the contrary. You need to learn reading comprehension.

You should ask the provincial government of which Labrador is supposedly a part. They are the ones who not only didn't insist on a smelter in Labrador, they actively worked to support Argentia. And they are the ones who signed the deal that will see concentrate shipped out, while the smelter is being built in Newfoundland.

At the end of the mine's life, Labrador will have a hole in the ground. Newfoundland will have a smelter, which if it is to continue operation, will have to import concentrate from somewhere else. In other words, someone else will have to make Newfoundland the beneficiary of their mine.

When are you Newfoundland nationalists going to be outraged about that?

What I *DID* say is that we need successful business enterprises in the province. No jurisdiction gets ahead with failed enterprises.

What is so offensive about Inco being a success story? What a bunch of Marxists you Newfoundland nationalists have become. What is the problem with Inco being a succesful company, rather than a failed one?

No wonder the provincial economy is in such bad shape, with so many anti-business Marxists running around.

If you wouldn't mind compiling something as to the reasons you are oriented in thinking this way,

Thinking WHAT way? I have no idea what you mean.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you WJM that the smelter should be built in one of Labrador's towns not in the Newfoundland town of Argentia. Adjacency should determine where the smelter is built and since the ore is mined in Labrador the processing should be done in Labrador. You say WJM "Then at the end of the mine's life Labrador will have a hole in the ground and Newfoundland, which if it is to continue operation, will have to import concentrate from somewhere else". Yes, like you said, someone else will have to make Newfoundland the beneficiary of thier mine, that is, of course, if Newfoundland does get a smelter. Labrador is making the 2 cities of Thompson, Manitoba and Suddbury, Ontario the beneficiary of its concentrate presently. I am sure it won't be either of those 2 cities as they have to import concentrate now from Labrador and ore doesn't grow in 30 years. I am very skeptical about that one, I am wondering which place out there in this world that will do such a thing in the future. I know Labrador is doing it, but I believe in my heart and soul Labrador will end up with a hole in the ground and Newfoundland will end up without any concentrate for its smelter, if a smelter is ever built in the first place.

I am a person who truly believes that Labrador should benefit from its resources and adjacency should always apply to any resource that is developed there. It shouldn't come to Newfoundland for processing and it shouldn't go to Thompson, Manitoba or Sudbuy, Ontario either.

Anonymous said...

Why so they can use sept isle as the port?

Anonymous said...

You are a Labradorian, I gather. I am fighting for what is right for Labrador. And I surely thought you would be, since that is the information I have gathered from most of your writings in Patriot's blog, or have I? You confuse me with what you say on Labrador. It will take a different person than me to solve your problems. I will end my case there.

Anonymous said...

Wow. NL'ers are so easy to distract from the main issues.

No wonder nothing ever gets done.

Anonymous said...

You Anon don't know what you are talking about. We, the people, who are complaining on this blog have nothing to do with getting things done because, we have nothing to do with the political process, we are being screwed by our politicians who do things their way. If I did, you can bet there would not be one iota of our resources, human or natural going out of this province until the needs of my fellow Newfoundlanders and Labradorians were met. What I am complaining about is that we cannot get ahead here because of the way our resources are dealt out.Of course, they are dealt out the way Ottawa wants to see them dealt out on behalf of the rest of Canada. I think the politicians of this province have their hands tied in that respect, but they have to throw off that yoke, since nobody else will do it for us. I think my voice gives me a power and my ability to put it on this electronic media system called the blog is the way from here on that I will exercise that option. Given the conditions that exist here in NewfoundlandLabrador where there are very few jobs it is quite acceptable to complain. Matter of fact more people, who have no control over what is happening here have to add their voices to this concern.

We have been silent in the past, we know that is part of the problem, so I deduce the more people who speak out, the more everyone including both levels of Government, will know that we are not taking this anymore and we want it fixed.

The government pharmacists just stood up to the provincial government and they are getting their issues rectified. Let everyone of the electorate here stand up to both levels of government and say a place, like Newfoundland and Labrador, with so many resources, and with such a strategic location in Canada should not have to endure the hardships that it does. Canada should be using our strategic location, which gives Canada its complete Eastern periphery to make us into a powerhouse with our own resources. With resources such as Oil, Fish, Minerals and Hydroelectric and lots of territory, we should be one of the most important provinces in this country.