September 27, 2012 - No. 121
Nation-Building or Nation-Wrecking?
The Case of Natural Gas and British
Sudden Increased Government Deficit
BC's Sudden Increased Government Deficit
• Serious Concerns About BC Liberals' Natural
Gas Strategy - Charles Boylan
• The Crucial Questions: Who Decides? Who
Controls the Decision-Making Process?
Federation Charter Challenge of Education Improvement Act
• Act in Violation of Charter Right to Free
Collective Bargaining - Dorothy-Jean O'Donnell
• Direct Assault on First Nations' Hereditary
Rights - TML Correspondent
2012 Okanagan Valley
• Optimism Turns to Despair - Brian
The Case of Natural Gas and BC's Sudden
Increased Government Deficit
Serious Concerns About BC Liberals'
Natural Gas Strategy
Earlier this year on February 3, Premier Christy Clark
announced British Columbia's natural gas strategy. Under the heading
"Natural gas fuelling new economic opportunities," she announced the
strategy "will be established on a foundation of four priorities for
long-term economic prosperity under the BC Jobs
Seven months later the provincial budget deficit
forecast increased $173 million, revised upward to $1.1 billion due to
declining natural gas revenues. The new Finance Minister Mike de Jong
reported a gigajoule of natural gas is now priced at $2.20 down from
$7.58 in 2005.
Gas prices are not expected to increase anytime soon, as
abundant new sources of shale gas have been found in the U.S., Canada's
The Finance Minister also announced that the decline in
natural gas revenue would be made up on the backs of those who actually
provide the social services British Columbians rely on, in health care,
education, park facilities, etc., by cutting these programs and
freezing or cutting wages and benefits.
The "fuelling of new economic opportunities" in the
development of natural gas is clearly not in the interests of the
workers and people of BC or in the development of BC to serve the
interests of the polity that lives and works in the province.
Natural gas, as with all the resources of BC, is an
asset of the province, First Nations and the country. These resources
are not to be handed over to the largest monopolies by those in power.
Where is the discussion amongst the polity about if, how and when the
resources of the province are to be developed,
by whom, in whose interest and who should reap the benefit and how?
against construction of Pacific Trails pipeline, December 9, 2011. The
pipeline will transport liquid natural gas produced by fracking of
deposits located in the BC interior to Kitimat.
The discussion goes on behind closed doors and
pronouncements are made rather than discussion amongst the people in
their regions throughout the province and then in the legislature. The
people are handed a fait accompli and have to scramble to
make sense of all the "announcements."
The fact the people have no say or control in these
matters is of concern for the workers and people of BC and Canada. It
is important that we are informed and able to discuss these matters of
the economy and the direction of the economy. How the natural resources
are developed is of utmost concern.
Matters of concern related to natural gas extraction and
1. The standard of living in BC including social
programs and public services rose with the development of secondary and
tertiary industries, away from shipping out raw resources. Can
transporting out natural gas raise the standard of living of British
Columbians and bring about a stable economy?
2. The low royalty rates (income from and control over
leases for a resource that belongs first to the First Nations, workers
and others in BC and Canada) need to be known, discussed and decided by
3. Regulatory options from other jurisdictions need to
be explored. Other models include state owned development and control
or majority state ownership and/or royalties that provide a source of
revenue when the resources are depleted.
4. What are the environmental and
other impacts of hydraulic fracturing of deep underground shale
deposits (fracking)? Are these practices environmentally and otherwise
safe? Do the impacts need mitigation and, if so, who will guarantee
this is done and how?
5. Is gas from deep underground shale deposits clean and
does its removal leave a safe and stable environment, including
wastewater, which has been found to be highly radioactive according to
a report of the United States Geological Survey?
6. Who pays for the infrastructure? Who uses the
7. Industry in BC pays a lower rate for
Hydro-electricity. "Fracking" is energy intensive. There are no
transmission lines to the shale plays in northeastern BC. Who will pay
for the transmission lines and the development of more electricity
potential? What will be the hydro rate for the "fracking" industry?
8. An oversupply of natural gas in North America exists
in part because of new technology that permits development of natural
gas from sources such as shale gas and, in part from the recent
wrecking of manufacturing and industry that requires energy. What
problems do shipping natural gas to Asia solve in
the Canadian economic base and what problems do they pose?
9. What are the regulatory requirements? When were the
Environmental Reviews conducted? Who conducted the Environmental
Reviews and what did they entail? Were the First Nations consulted on
all aspects of natural gas development in their territories; were the
people of BC?
The Crucial Questions: Who Decides?
Who Controls the Decision-Making Process?
A February BC Liberal government pronouncement declared
that with "the development of a brand-new LNG sector ... long- term
economic prosperity" would result. There was no outline of how or why
this "economic prosperity" would come about, just a bald statement. The
"A vibrant, diverse natural gas sector will create more
opportunities for BC -- jobs, investment, and opportunity -- and will
support a clean, safe and secure energy future for all British
Columbians.... BC also has a vision of becoming a global leader in
secure and sustainable natural gas investment, development
The jobs in natural gas
extraction are few and
short-term. The resource at this point is not used as the seed to build
thriving communities with public services, social programs, other
cultural, urban and industrial infrastructure and manufacturing
The BC government website A Guide to BC Economy
states: "Most of the jobs are in primary mining ... but most of the
industry's value added comes from oil and gas extraction.... Oil &
gas extraction employs just 2,200 people. In terms of GDP, however, the
oil & gas extraction industry generates
about two-thirds of the industry's total value added.... The
discrepancy between GDP and employment shares is a reflection of the
way outputs are produced. Oil & gas extraction requires a huge
investment in capital equipment, and labour is a less important input
used in production."
Note that the government item distorts the economic
reality that "labour" produces the "capital equipment." The working
class produces all "inputs used in production," including itself the
human factor. The large GDP or total value of oil & gas extraction
comes from the work-time required to produce the
transferred-value (the "huge investment") plus the work-time of the oil
& gas and transportation workers.
"Natural gas is mechanically pumped out of the ground,
processed, and then distributed to customers via a pipeline system.
This does not require a lot of hands-on work. Most of the people
employed in this industry are there to set up, monitor, and maintain
the equipment that does this and to keep things operating
Investment in a Brand-New LNG Sector
The February pronouncement promised, "A vibrant, diverse
natural gas sector will create more opportunities for BC -- jobs,
investment, and opportunity."
From the government's own website, the "brand-new LNG
sector" is not a "job creation program" unless all the "capital
equipment" is manufactured in BC, which it is not. But what about the
promised "investment and opportunity"?
As presented by the BC Liberals, the natural gas/LNG
sector is capital intensive and creates few BC jobs and limited
added-value in the province. Natural gas is a finite resource and
extraction requires a huge infrastructure and a continuous massive
supply of energy. Infrastructure, energy and some active work-time
are necessary to produce and deliver more energy in the form of natural
gas. Hydro electricity and the transmission lines necessary for the
"brand-new LNG sector" create value and this value goes into the newly
produced natural gas. Whether that value is returned in full to BC
Hydro will depend on the price the
natural gas companies pay for the electricity.
According to the BC Hydro website, it made an
"Application for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for
the Dawson Creek/Chetwynd Area Transmission Project" in July 2011 and
anticipates approval by the fall of 2012. BC Hydro also notes, "The
proposed project does not trigger assessment under
the BC Environmental Assessment Act and, at this time, it does not
appear to trigger assessment under the Canadian Environmental
Under the "Financial Capacity" section of the
Application, it is made clear that the people of BC will be expected to
finance the delivery of electricity to the natural gas extractors: "[BC
Hydro] has the financial capacity to undertake the Project and other
large projects by means of:
"borrowing guaranteed by the Province; borrowing
directly from the Province; and by funds generated internally from the
operation of its business."
However, it is not clear whether the price for the
electricity sold to the natural gas producers will fully recoup the
price of production for constructing the infrastructure and delivering
the electricity, which includes financing and claims of the lenders,
enterprise profit for BC Hydro, wages and benefits for the
work-time involved in construction and constant production, salaries,
all government claims through taxation, any transferred-value directly
consumed in construction and production, and transferred-value through
depreciation of equipment and machinery.
Development of shale-gas in BC and whether to commit
public resources to this adventure is a matter for the BC polity to
decide. The central issues regarding resources and their development
including financing are "Who decides" and "Who controls the
decision-making process" -- the people or
private monopoly interests and their government
representatives. Yet, no information, discussion or debate have been
officially organized amongst the polity or in the legislature.
Information is provided mostly within the arena of a regulatory hearing
on a transmission line proposal. But even knowing that this regulatory
hearing took place, and well after important
issues had been decided, would not have happened without the concern of
other businesses and industry. The Globe
Mail in an item entitled "Booming natural-gas sector ignites
debate over BC Hydro service," reported on May 20:
"The Commercial Energy Consumers Association argued that
natural-gas producers should be encouraged to provide their own energy
rather than drive up costs for all BC Hydro's customers. 'We are
concerned with the logic of a mass of strategic investment in natural
gas in the province, resulting in export of
very significant quantities of natural gas to be used for power supply
in other countries,' said the association's lawyer, Chris Weafer,
'while the BC Hydro ratepayers may end up with very significant rate
increases to facilitate that.'
"Matthew Keen of the Association of Major Power
Customers raised the allocation of costs between old and new customers
on the system, prompting BC Hydro to suspend the hearing for four
months. By the time the hearing resumed, the ranks of interveners had
swelled, with 16 lawyers representing local first
nations, gas producers, the Old Age Pensioners' Organization, the
Sierra Club of B.C. and others.
"Don Davies, representing Murphy Oil, Encana and Arc
Resources, said his clients are entitled to the same service as any
other customer of BC Hydro. 'And my clients have made and are making
decisions and investments based on that expectation'."
If BC Hydro receives from its industrial consumers an
equivalent to its prices of production, including the servicing of
debt, then it can thrive and be a great contributor of value to the
province. If this is not the case and the value it produces is mostly
seized by certain industrial consumers through prices lower
than the price of hydro-electric production, and this value flows into
the private coffers of privileged global monopolies, then BC Hydro
becomes a burden on the people, businesses and public treasury.
BC Teachers' Federation Charter Challenge
of Education Improvement Act
Act in Violation of Charter Right to
Free Collective Bargaining
The BC Teachers' Federation (BCTF) filed a Notice of
Civil Claim in BC Supreme Court June 27, challenging provisions of the Education
Act, formerly Bill 22. The teachers' organization
claims the Act violates the Charter right to free collective bargaining.
The BCTF says the Act gives the BC Public School
Education Association (BCPSEA, the employer) the power to deny any
increase in compensation for teachers or any restriction on management
rights, which negates the teachers' right to bargain. The BCTF further
claims that this government direction has
led to bad faith bargaining on the part of BCPSEA.
Further, the complaint asserts that the Education
Improvement Act violates teachers' Charter rights by reintroducing
provisions which have been previously struck down by the Courts as
violating the Charter. These provisions prevent teachers from
bargaining over class size and composition, and staffing
levels. Directly contravening the right to bargain in good faith, the
legislation continues the practice of deleting hundreds of provisions
agreed to by both the BCTF and BCPSEA, provisions that benefit
teachers, students and public education.
The Civil Claim also challenges regulations through
which the government purports to compensate teachers without going
through collective bargaining, while directing the BCPSEA not to
Finally, the Civil Claim asserts that the government has
failed to establish a fair dispute resolution mechanism and instead has
unconstitutionally legislated that government solely will determine the
content of the collective agreement. No date for the hearing of the
claim has yet been set.
On June 28, Justice Hyslop dismissed the BCTF's
application for Judicial Review concerning the appointment of Dr. Jago
as the "mediator" under the Education Improvement Act. The
Court found it was within the "discretion" of government to make the
Background to the Charter Challenge
The background to this Charter challenge has its origins
in the time of the teachers' resistance in 2001-2002 to the
government's dictate to exclude bargaining over a range of subject
matter including classroom size and composition.
On May 30, 2002 the teachers' union challenged Bills 27
and 28 under the Charter, advancing the claim that they violated the
Section 2b freedom of association provisions of the Charter. Health
care workers brought a parallel challenge to Bill 29, challenging the
government's dictate and violation of their collective
As the judge who heard the teachers' Charter challenge
in 2011 stated, all three pieces of legislation were founded on the
government's theory that it could impose legislation which
overrode terms of existing collective agreements and prohibited
negotiation over those subjects in the future.
The teachers' Charter challenge was held in abeyance
pending the determination of the health care workers claim, which was
decided by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2007.
The teachers' Charter challenge came before Justice
Susan Griffin in November 2010, and the decision was rendered on April
13, 2011. Justice Griffin found
and invalid sections 8 and 15 of the Public
Act (PEFCA) and Section 5 of
the Amendment Act.
As a result of the constitutional infringement, she found Section 9 of
the PEFCA no longer in force.
The provisions struck down in the PEFCA provided as
* Section 8 amended the School Act to prohibit
restricting management rights concerning class size, staffing levels or
maximum or minimum case loads, staffing or teaching loads and declaring
void any provision in a collective agreement which is inconsistent with
the Act or required the employers' association
to negotiate over or the Labour Relations Board or an Arbitrator to
amend or modify a provision.
* Section 9: Appointing an Arbitrator who would make
final decisions whether a provision violated the legislation.
* Section 15: If a school board is satisfied that a
provision in a collective agreement limits the board's power to set the
school calendar it can declare it void. This includes the schedule of
delivery of school programs, the hours, days, weeks and months of the
year on which educational programs are provided,
and the days on which teachers are scheduled to provide same. The issue
regarding Section 5 of the Amendment
Act arose as a result of the decision of the Arbitrator acting
under Section 9 of the 2002 legislation. The Arbitrator removed
extensive provisions of the Collective Agreement declaring them
with the Act. The BCTF was successful in obtaining Judicial Review of
the decision in 2004. Justice Shaw of the BC Supreme Court struck down
the Arbitrator's decision as wrong in law in that it violated the
principle of "harmonization" in ruling that the subject matter of the
struck provisions violated the Act and
restored the provisions.
The BC government then introduced the Amendment Act (2004) which, in
Section 5, provided for the deletion of various Memorandums of
Understanding which form part of the Collective Agreement and repealed
provisions of the Educational
Services Collective Agreement Act, and
did so retroactive to July
In striking down Section 5 of the Amendment Act, Justice Griffin
restored the previously deleted provisions of the Collective Agreement,
however she suspended her Declaration for one year, which meant it came
into effect on April 13, 2012.
The BC government did not appeal the Griffin decision.
Instead, it introduced Bill 22, the Education Improvement Act,
which had been previously struck
down by the Courts, but made provision for compensating teachers
outside of the collective agreement regarding
class size, while banning the employers' association from negotiating
with teachers over class size and imposing significant fines and
penalties for any strike action.
1. BCTF v BC 2012 BCSC 960.
2. See Justice Griffin para 8, BCTF v BC 2011 BCSC 469
3. Health Care Services v
BC 2007 SCC 22.
4. This Supreme Court of
Canada decision overturned the previous high court precedent in Professional Institute of the Public
Service v Northwest Territories (Commissioner)  2 S.C.R.
367 that held that collective bargaining was not protected under the
5. BCTF v BC 2011 BCSC 469
6. BCTF v BCPSEA 2004 BCSC 86
7. Introduced February 28,
2012; Royal Assent March 15, 2012.
Prosperity Mine Proposal
Direct Assault on First Nations' Hereditary Rights
Protest against Taseko
Mines by Tsilqhot'in First Nation, Vancouver, June 16, 2010.
The second Prosperity Mine proposal is for a 20-year
open pit operation for copper and gold with a daily production rate of
70,000 tonnes. The property is located southwest of Williams Lake near
Taseko Lake right in the middle of the traditional territory of the
Tsilqhot'in. Taseko Mines, owned by Hunter
Dickinson, is promoting this second proposal for a gold and copper
mine. The Tsilqhot'in First Nations and its many allies amongst the BC
population oppose the mine development on its territory and demand the
The original company proposal was turned down by the
Federal government cabinet through the Minister of the Environment in
November 2010. The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) had
delivered a negative report on the project mainly due to its plan to
drain Fish Lake and place waste
rock, low grade ore and overburden into it, and as a replacement, to
form an artificial lake nearby.
The decision to reject the Taseko Mines' proposal was
similar to another one turning down the Kemess North mine due to the
planned destruction of a lake important to the local First Nations in
that area. The natural destruction of the two mines would give a
limited operating and construction time of between
14 to 20 years. Evidence in the two cases was reviewed and carefully
considered by First Nations and their allies and by professionals
involved in CEAA and the mining industry including university mining
professors. A broad consensus and public opinion led by the First
Nations and supported by CEAA concluded
that the two proposals were not viable and should not be permitted to
Jim Prentice, the Minister of Environment at the time,
made the announcement rejecting the Prosperity Mine. Shortly afterward,
Prentice, who came from the ranks of the Progressive Conservative Party
not Harper's Reform Party, resigned from Harper's cabinet for "family
reasons." He has since emerged as senior
executive vice-president and vice-chairman of the Canadian Imperial
Bank of Commerce. This year, in his CIBC role, he wrote an article
warning the federal government to pay serious attention in its
negotiations with First Nations over the shipment of bitumen and oil
across BC to Kitimat and Vancouver in the
proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion
However, recent legislation brought in by the Harper
Conservatives will limit the ability of the Canadian Environmental
Assessment Agency to carry out its mandate. More ominous are explicit
amendments to the Fisheries Act that allow turning lakes into
"A regulation created under the federal Fisheries
Act allows for the reclassification of natural water bodies as
'tailings impoundment areas.' Such a classification means that
protection of fish and fish habitat ordinarily provided by the Fisheries
Act, does not apply and the water body may
be used as a disposal site for mine tailings. This article briefly
describes the history of this regulatory provision, the purpose for its
inclusion under the Fisheries Act and the process through
which such reclassifications are made."
A further justification to limit the extent and decision
making power of any review is to "streamline" such review processes.
This facilitates the power of monopoly capital to arrange directly the
extraction of Canadian resources in its advantage. The very fact that
the provincial and federal governments connived
together to reopen the Prosperity Mine proposal indicates the political
shift with the 2011 election of a Harper "majority" government. This
parliamentary majority "won" with massive amounts of money, mass media
coverage to disinform Canadians and manipulation of the electoral
system gave Harper 24 per cent
of Canadian eligible votes but a majority of seats in Parliament.
Harper has now assumed dictatorial power to act directly on behalf of
mining capitalists without any due regard for the public interest,
environment or First Nations' hereditary rights.
Mining projects, especially open pits can profoundly
change the natural environment and need to be carefully considered. All
the consequences both positive and negative need to be weighed.
Agreement has to be obtained from the Native community if the lands lie
on traditional First Nations' territory. In addition,
the local non-Native community must not be bulldozed into accepting
such projects under continuous pressure about "creating jobs" and
"prosperity." Modern mining methods include relatively few jobs as the
operations are highly capitalized using machinery and employed workers
are more often than not professional
miners brought in from other projects or even from overseas. As one
long-time Canadian prospector put it, mining projects need to be
"community driven" not "driven into the community."
Taseko Mines has submitted
its second proposal for
consideration by the CEAA. Under this proposal, Fish Lake will be
preserved and a different location will be found for placing the waste
rock, low grade ore and overburden. The tailings will still be disposed
of in Little Fish Lake and the discharge will be
collected in seepage ponds in an attempt to prevent the contamination
of Fish Creek. The open pit will be only 500 meters from Fish Lake, a
very short distance considering the toxicity of the waste, and the
ongoing negative record of tailing ponds leaking or seeping into fresh
water. Sloughing or over-digging could
also reduce this distance, significantly increasing the hazard.
Complicating matters is an unresolved land claims case
brought by the Tsilqhot'in. The Tsilqhot'in people are on record saying
they will do everything in their power to stop the project from going
forward at least until their land claims case is settled. A major lands
claim case to decide aboriginal title took place
in the BC Supreme Court between 2002 and 2007. The court ruled that
evidence showed definite aboriginal title existed. Extensive evidence
from the fields of archaeology, anthropology, history, cartography,
hydrology, wildlife ecology, ethno-ecology, biology, linguistics,
forestry and forest ecology was presented
by the First Nations. All this evidence pointed to the undeniable
ownership and long term First Nations use of the land for living,
building habitations, hunting, fishing, berry and other edible food and
medicinal plant gathering, , making a network of trails, etc. The land
sought for the mine is in this traditional territory.
Final decision has yet to be made in a federal court
whether aboriginal title exists or not. The Tsilqhot'in people have
filed for such a court case to decide finally on their title, but the
process is presently stalled.
At present, a Strategic 2010 Engagement Agreement exists
between the First Nations in the Tsilqhot'in territory and the BC
Government. Any proposed logging, mining or hunting activities within
their area must be approved by the First Nations before proceeding.
Roger Williams of the Xeni Gwet'in community
of the Tsilqhot'in people considers this process beneficial to the
First Nations. At the same time Marilyn Baptiste, a chief and strong
advocate for the Tsilqhot'in Nations, told a special program of DISCUSSION
on Vancouver Co-Op Radio on September 15, that she and her people
were adamant that
the Prosperity Mine project will not be allowed on their traditional
territory. She said her people highly value the clean water, access to
salmon, hunting and other food procurement rather than the very
short-lived corporate mining project that will enrich the owners of
but bring environmental disaster to the
community and very few real or sustainable economic benefits and jobs.
Given the direction of the Harper government's politics
resource extraction and exportation over development of Canadian
manufacturing, it seems likely the second Prosperity Mine proposal will
be given a green light by the CEAA and final approval by Harper's
cabinet. Moreover, the Harper dictatorship pays little
heed to either public or First Nations' interests.
Development of the Prosperity mine would also meet the
political agenda of BC Premier Christy Clark. She is pushing mining
investment very hard, calling for the opening of another eight to ten
mines in BC in the next few years, including Prosperity. Presently, the
BC mining sector has about 9,500 jobs while more than 160,000 workers
are unemployed. The reality of modern mining
underlines that development of Prosperity and other mines is not about
reducing mass unemployment as claimed by politicians and media alike.
The aim of mining BC's mineral resources is to enrich the private
interests that control mining capital
and those private interests dominate both the BC Legislature and
Parliament. The public and First Nations' interests are not represented
within the government authority.
The politics of the Tsilqhot'in people are the politics
of nation-building, of defending their title rights, and ensuring the
integrity of the environment. They favour development but development
that is long term and sustainable, which does not directly contradict
their traditional way of life, as the Prosperity mine
would do. The perspective of the Tsilqhot'in people is consistent with
a human-centred approach to the development of the economy in BC
because it focuses on meeting the needs and fulfilling the rights of
the people who have lived forever in this beautiful and rich territory
on the plateau of central British Columbia,
and sharing that abundance with the rest of the BC population.
2012 Okanagan Valley Cherry Crop
Optimism Turns to Despair
A heavy blossom on cherry trees in BC's Okanagan Valley
this past spring caused tree fruit farmers to be optimistic that there
would be a huge cherry crop this year. An official with BC Tree Fruits,
the marketing agency for some 550 growers, predicted the agency would
handle 8 million pounds of cherries,
double that of last year.
But the early hopes turned to despair as the orchards
were hit with set-backs from nature and then the capitalist
marketplace. Rain and wind conditions damaged the crops. But far more
destructive was the dictate of the capitalist marketplace that the
orchardists would only be paid about twenty cents per pound
for their produce. The breakeven point is about seventy cents per
pound. Faced with this grim news, many growers left the fruit on the
trees to rot and fall to the ground. One grower who farms about 60
acres of cherries near Penticton estimated he left 100,000 pounds of
cherries on the trees. Such a
of a precious fruit is irrational and must be addressed.
Besides the loss of income to the orchardists, "no
picking" severely affects the incomes of the many seasonal farm workers
who travel through the Okanagan, working their way from crop to crop.
The lost livelihoods of hundreds more workers involved in sorting,
packing and shipping fruit contribute to the
unemployment rolls. Unemployment overall in the province was 7 percent
in July 2012 with an increase of 2.8 per cent unemployment in the
agricultural sector from the previous year.
An orchardist blamed low prices on cheap, lower quality
fruit from the US state of Washington being dumped onto the Canadian
market. This is permitted under terms of the Canada-US free trade
agreement and would be strengthened as an economic factor in the
agricultural sector if the proposed free trade agreement
with Europe goes ahead.
Canadian agriculture is under assault from all sides.
The Canadian Wheat Board's public monopoly was liquidated at the
dictate of the global grain monopolies in December 2011. Threats to
supply-side marketing boards in poultry, eggs and dairy are coming from
the looming Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement.
Already the existing free trade agreements cause serious problems to
orchardists and other farmers such as the cherry producers. Canada
clearly needs a new direction for agriculture production, one that
ensures food security for the Canadian people, and is not subordinate
to Monsanto, the grain, retail and other monopolies
that dominate not only Canadian but global food production and
Canada is increasingly dependent on food production in
the United States, Mexico and elsewhere. A consensus is developing that
Canadians have lost control of their economy including agricultural
production. Global monopolies have seized control of the basic sectors
and their private interests are upheld as primary
within the BC Legislature and Parliament.
The economy requires self-reliance and diversity in all
sectors and harmony between agricultural production and manufacturing
and the service sectors. Without security in food production then
manufacturing and other non-agricultural sectors are at risk. Without
manufacturing of farm machinery and other non-farm
products then agricultural workers cannot fulfill their production
responsibilities. To bring this nation-building project into reality a
new direction for the economy is required centred on decision-making
and control by the actual producers.
1. Kelowna Capital News,
2. Penticton Western
News, August 10, 2012.
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