Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Afghanistan War

The war in Afghanistan is not going well. The UN-mandated NATO-led mission to help the Afghan people achieve peace and stability is not likely to ever succeed. It is costly and more important Canada has lost too many lives on the foreign soils of this complicated war front. Having Canada and the United States engaged in this conflict is troubling in other ways. The President of Afghanistan, Hamid Karzai, is burdened by his own corruption and yet we are somehow forced to accommodate him. Hamid Karzai is using Canada and other nations for his own agenda and his loyalties can turn on a dime.

Why Stephen Harper invited Hamid Karzai to address the House of Commons is an interesting question. I suppose it was believed entertaining one more loose cannon wouldn’t make much difference. Karzai has also dragged the United States into entertaining a visit for the sole purpose of stroking his ego to keep him on side.

The effort and sacrifice of our troops in Afghanistan, answering the call of duty placed on them by their government, is both remarkable and appreciated. Was this a conflict we should never have entered? Have we made a sustainable difference in Afghanistan? Is it now time to get out of Afghanistan? These are questions the Canadian people must answer and for our government to act accordingly.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Sir Wilfred Laurier

Wilfrid Laurier ideas on Immigrants and being a Canadian in 1907.

'In the first place, we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes a Canadian and assimilates himself to us, he shall be treated on an exact equality with everyone else, for it is an outrage to discriminate against any such man because of creed, or birthplace, or origin. But this is predicated upon the person's becoming in every facet a Canadian, and nothing but a Canadian...There can be no divided allegiance here. Any man who says he is a Canadian, but something else also, isn't a Canadian at all. We have room for but one flag, the Canadian flag... We have room for but one language here, and that is the English language.. And we have room for but one sole loyalty and that is a loyalty to the Canadian people.'

_Wilfrid Laurier 1907

Monday, August 16, 2010

Migrant Tamils

The recent arrival of nearly 500 Tamil migrants on Canada’s west coast after a three-month voyage is troubling for both them and this country. This is not the first time that Tamil refugees have come here by ship and it won’t be the last as more ships loaded with immigrant Tamil refugees are expected to land on Canadian shores according to our government.

There is a lot wrong with this method of achieving landed immigrant status in this country. It is costly and unfair to Canada. How can people board a ship, suffer for three months on the open seas, arrive on our shores and then expect Canadians to harbor them for life? Worse yet, Canadians are often expected to take up the battle they left.

It is time for Canada and the US to get out of wars they should never have entered and can’t win. It is time for both countries to cool the troubled waters with strong doses of diplomacy leading to more peaceful settlements of disruptions in other countries, if we are to become involved at all. It is also time for our government to draw a hard line on migrant immigrants. As long as we keep taking them in they will keep on coming while others are left to go through the normal channels of a lengthy immigration process before they can come to Canada. How is that fair?

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Election Talk

There has been talk about an election ever since Stephen Harper formed a minority government.  The liberals booted their former leader, Dion for Ignatieff, and the liberals are still not high enough in the polls to form government.  This is the only reason Harper is able to hang onto his minority government.  It is also the reason why talk of an election is a waste of time.  None of the political parties want to have an election because there would be no clear winner according to the polls.

Harper just made some minor changes to his cabinet and then promptly stated that an election would interrupt the nation's economic recovery.  I disagree with the Prime Minister.  There is very little economic recovery and much talk about slipping back into recession.  Harper once said Canada would not likely be in a recession and if so we would be the last in and the first out.  He made that statement at the same time he told the media that a Harper conservative government would not run deficits or increase the nation's debt.  Harper has been wrong on the economy from the very beginning and little has changed.  When will he realize there is little the government can do to improve the economy and a lot they can do, and have done, to harm the economy.

Canada's economy may be better than most, but it is anything but stable.  Check your stocks and your savings and investment deposits.  How are they doing?  The politicians know the economy is the most important issue facing Canadians.  Canada is one player in a large global economy.  The best thing the government can do is to manage effectively within existing economic conditions and quit talking about elections.