Author Topic: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia  (Read 8443 times)

pogge

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #30 on: September 18, 2009, 06:09:03 PM »
Quote from: Alison@Creekside
On Sept 15 the committee met for 15 minutes in camera, meeting minutes locked.
They met again Sept 17, minutes and even info on length of meeting locked.
Sounds like a back room deal to me.

Alison

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #31 on: September 18, 2009, 06:13:28 PM »
Pogge : see edit above.

skdadl

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #32 on: September 18, 2009, 06:17:26 PM »
Alison, I'm googling away as I write, but who is the third Lib on the committee? In his letter, Rae makes it sound as though he's going to be there, pondering seriously through all the evidence and the "debate." Not so, eh?

Croghan27

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #33 on: September 18, 2009, 06:42:08 PM »
Quote from: Alison@Creekside
The International Trade Committee this bill will proceed to consists of 6 Cons, 3 Libs, 2 Bloc, and 1 NDP. Lib Scott Brison is already stridently in favour, with Lib Mario Silva not far behind, so it's 9 to 3 in favour of passing.
On Sept 15 the committee met for 15 minutes in camera, meeting minutes locked.
They met again Sept 17, minutes and even info on length of meeting locked.

ETA : During the last session, a meeting with a senator from Colombia opposed and the Colombian ambassador in favour was adjourned mid-meeting because members had to return to the house to vote on the first reading. No one is even pretending this committee has any creds.

Hummmm .. Scott Brison, eh? Is that the same Scott (I wanna be Leader of the Conservatives) Brison? or the Scott (I love Paul Martin, even if I criticized him, 'cause he will make me croggy's boss at Public Works) Brison? Maybe that is the Scott (send a note to the CIBC the day before income Trusts were to be taxed about it - NO I DIDN'T - OOPS, YES I DID  :oops:  ) Brison? It could always be the Scott (I wanna be the Leader of the Liberal Party) Brison, who campaigned on environmentalism (as in nuclear power) and corporate tax cuts. (Sounds like a Liberal to me, but he lost to Dion  :whis: )

Wait a while ... when he figures it will be in some way to his benefit, his view will change.
"It is also a good rule not to put overmuch confidence in the observational results that are put forward until they are confirmed by theory." -- Arthur Stanley Eddington

Alison

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #34 on: September 18, 2009, 07:17:38 PM »
Croghie : Not this time, I fear.
Skdadl : Vice Chair John Cannis is the 3rd Lib and if he's ever said anything, I missed it.
Here's the committee - scroll down a bit.

Skdadl said :
Quote
Rae makes it sound as though he's going to be there, pondering seriously through all the evidence and the "debate."  Not so, eh?

He'll definitely be called as a witness at the very least, as he and Brison went on a fact-finding mission to Colombia this summer :
Quote
"We asked the hard questions," Brison said. "Even the human rights people we met with in Colombia who were opposed to the agreement could not identify how (it) can worsen human rights."


Understand just prior to this, Brison heard from Colombian witnesses in committee who were very damn clear why it definitely will worsen human rights.
The Cons tabled this bill before the committee had even finished their report and ignored their recommendations for an independent human rights assessment first. Instead, Rae and Brison went and came back with glowing reports.
Although teachers are still being taken out of their classrooms and shot for unionizing - last one on Sept 8 - and assassinations, disappearings and kidnappings are up this year over last year, Rae says not as many trade unionists have been killed as 7 years ago. What a ringing endorsement. Odd how after you've killed off the leaders, not as many others step forward. Also after you've killed a leader off once, you can't kill him again the next year.

Croghan27

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #35 on: September 19, 2009, 05:49:37 AM »
Quote from: Alison@Creekside



Understand just prior to this, Brison heard from Colombian witnesses in committee who were very damn clear why it definitely will worsen human rights.
The Cons tabled this bill before the committee had even finished their report and ignored their recommendations for an independent human rights assessment first. Instead, Rae and Brison went and came back with glowing reports.
Although teachers are still being taken out of their classrooms and shot for unionizing - last one on Sept 8 - and assassinations, disappearings and kidnappings are up this year over last year, Rae says not as many trade unionists have been killed as 7 years ago. What a ringing endorsement. Odd how after you've killed off the leaders, not as many others step forward. Also after you've killed a leader off once, you can't kill him again the next year.

For the Cons I can lump this in with wretched people do wretched things .... they are ideological free traders because Harper tells them to be. It would also fit in well with American South American policy, legitimizing a horrid regime who's only good point (for them) is that it Uribe not Chavez; heavily tilted right, not democratically left. I doubt if Clinton would have to speak to Harper about this support - like a good trained puppy he would jump at the chance.

Yet I do have some residual use for Rae and am surprised he could justify supporting this measure in the face of all the evidence that Colombia's government only toys with some things that Canadians find vital to their character. I have not, so far, heard any rational explanation for supporting this measure, not from the Cons, and not from Rae.

I must admit, my knowledge of the nuances of the situation comes from the CLC position papers - but the charges they level have not been either answered or ameliorated. (That not so many teachers/reporter/union people are being killed as before does not cut it in my books.)

I have often applied all the warm and fuzzy reasons the Conservatives mouth about sending troops to Afghanistan and fitted them to Colombia. It works ... if we are doing in Asia the things we are doing for the reasons they give, then we should invade Colombia. I suspect that the Taliban are far less a threat to Canada than either the Colombian government or FARQ.
"It is also a good rule not to put overmuch confidence in the observational results that are put forward until they are confirmed by theory." -- Arthur Stanley Eddington

Alison

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #36 on: September 19, 2009, 03:16:59 PM »
Croghie said :
Quote
I have often applied all the warm and fuzzy reasons the Conservatives mouth about sending troops to Afghanistan and fitted them to Colombia.

How very astute of you. Excellent point.
Especially Canada acting as cat's paw for US interests and support for pres backed by drug cartels.
In the HoC on Tuesday, Con Shelley Glover even went on at length about "What about the Colombian children?"

Rae's stated reasons are actually much less awful than the others'. On Tuesday in the HoC he explained his position - Canadian companies, mostly mining, are already in Colombia so we need a formal agreement to monitor same. He also supports the trade committee being allowed to finish its work before second reading. Of course he knows the trade committee is stacked for it so ....

Croghan27

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #37 on: September 19, 2009, 03:59:00 PM »
Quote
Canadian companies, mostly mining, are already in Colombia so we need a formal agreement to monitor same.

GEEZE - now I am really confused.  :shock:

We need a formal agreement to monitor Canadian Mining companies in southern America? Does he mean like the CANADIAN mining companies in Honduras?
Quote
An independent report published last month condemns the business practices of Canada's Goldcorp Inc. and exposes the Canadian mining industry's often socially and environmentally destructive practices throughout the hemisphere.

This is one of the premier gold mining companies in the world and operates in Canada, the U.S., Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, and Argentina. We DO have a formal agreement with Mexico and still ...  Jantzi Research, an independent research firm, recommended Goldcorp be considered ineligible for socially responsible investment (SRI) portfolios.. While this is for actions in Honduras and Guatemala - it is still .... the highest fined company for environmental offences on the Toronto Stock Exchange. \

We do not need a monitor for companies such as these, as you can see they are "monitored" quite well TYVM, we need some gaol time for their principals.
"It is also a good rule not to put overmuch confidence in the observational results that are put forward until they are confirmed by theory." -- Arthur Stanley Eddington

Alison

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #38 on: September 19, 2009, 04:43:07 PM »
Croghie : There is a bill pending for this from Lib John McKay: Bill C-300 -An Act respecting Corporate Accountability for the Activities of Mining, Oil or Gas in Developing Countries
Quote
“to ensure that corporations engaged in mining, oil or gas activities and receiving support from the Government of Canada act in a manner consistent with international environmental best practices and with Canada’s commitments to international human rights standards"

It narrowly passed second reading on April 22 - Yeas: 137 vs Nays: 133
 
It includes a complaints mechanism under which any Canadian citizen or citizen of a developing country may lodge complaints against Canadian corporations that contravene the guidelines for environmental and labour/social behavior and requires the ministers responsible to file a report to Parliament based on an investigation of the complaints received.

Not perfect but going in the right direction.

Two days ago in the Hoc the Cons dissed it as an "emotional" bill.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce says "it will create a disincentive for mining and oil and gas companies to continue to be based in Canada."

Croghan27

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #39 on: September 19, 2009, 06:34:48 PM »
Quote
Two days ago in the Hoc the Cons dissed it as an "emotional" bill.
The Canadian Chamber of Commerce says "it will create a disincentive for mining and oil and gas companies to continue to be based in Canada."

croggy managed to pay a large portion of his tuition/books and lodging charges while he despoiled the environment of South Moresby Island in a mine called Tasu in the late 60s. I was peripherally aware of the 'emotional' whining' of the local Kwakiutl First Nations, but the cold logic of economics demanded I be there. I could sympathise to a certain extent - when flying in we would cruise over a mountain side of verdant green - to see the other side; ugly brown, washing into the salt chuck through the legally mandated fringe of forest at the water line.

Ugly is an emotional charge - and now it seems the Kwakiutl First Nations were correct in their emotions. it has just taken 40 years for our 'cold hard logic' to catch up to what they intuitively knew. The islands are still suffering from the environmental damage done by Westfrob Mines and the First Nations did not even get rich off it. To call it an emotional bill, is not a negative accusation in my books.

This is some kind of 'feel good bill' - a rich country that cannot/will not control oil sands development, now wants to pass into a law something that will condemn the dazzlingly poor countries outside of it for contravening environmental best practices????


I submit that even should this bill be passed into law, it would do nothing to help the workers in any country (including this one) and less to protect the ecology of anywhere.

I am impressed Alison, as always, with your research and diligence and suggest that this 'mean nothing - do nothing' bill may be useful in judging the temper of the HoC. The environment is important to Canadians - getting re-elected is important to the member of the House, so, seeming to care about environmental matters is important to them.

I had actually heard of the bill elsewhere ... but it is a "tale told by an idiot ..... blah ..blah ...blah (you know the rest).
"It is also a good rule not to put overmuch confidence in the observational results that are put forward until they are confirmed by theory." -- Arthur Stanley Eddington

Alison

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #40 on: September 19, 2009, 07:58:58 PM »
Croghie said
Quote
This is some kind of 'feel good bill' - a rich country that cannot/will not control oil sands development, now wants to pass into a law something that will condemn the dazzlingly poor countries outside of it for contravening environmental best practices????

No, just Canadian corps in receipt of Government of Canada support which contravene environmental and human rights and labour practices in the developing world.
Admittedly what exactly what constitutes a Canadian company is a problem and it does not address past atrocities, but so far the bill has the support of Amnesty International Canada, the United Church of Canada, the Canadian Council for International Co-operation, Friends of the Earth, the Steelworkers Humanity Fund, and the the Canadian Labour Congress.

Currently shlubbing its way through the Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development. It's a start, Croghie, and if it passes will provide an avenue for complaints against the Colombia agreement when it passes.

ETA : Just found this : Support Bill C-300
.

Croghan27

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #41 on: September 20, 2009, 08:56:24 AM »
Here is the CLC submission to Parliament about any Colombia free trade agreement.

and Ten Reasons to Oppose this AFTA.

1) AFTA Splinters Real Integration of the Andes

2) AFTA Legalizes Violent Threats to Workers

3) AFTA Worsens Environmental Contamination and Oil Conflicts

4) AFTA Sets a Death Sentence for AIDS Patients

5) AFTA Displaces Small Farmers, and Sells them our Leftovers

6) Fair Immigration Means Stopping the NAFTA-CAFTA-AFTA Model

7) AFTA Will Increase the Cultivation of Illegal Crops

8) Latin Americans Want a Fairer Trade Model

9) Opposition is Building

10) We Can Win!

As for croggy, I am not so sure about #10. With the Conservatives committed to various Free Trade initiatives for doctrinaire reasons, and the Liberals in full ME TOO mode (even as they try to come firmly down on both sides of the issue) it is close to one of those 'done deals'.
"It is also a good rule not to put overmuch confidence in the observational results that are put forward until they are confirmed by theory." -- Arthur Stanley Eddington

pogge

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #42 on: September 20, 2009, 09:00:21 AM »
Conservatives Delay Vote on Canada Colombia Free Trade Agreement
Quote
Reports from Ottawa are that the Conservatives have notched the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement down on the order paper.

pogge

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #43 on: September 21, 2009, 04:23:05 PM »
Just came in:
Quote
Dear [pogge]:
Thank you for taking the time to contact our office concerning Bill C-23, An Act to implement the Free Trade Agreement between Canada and the Republic of Colombia, the Agreement on the Environment between Canada and the Republic of Colombia and the Agreement on Labour Cooperation between Canada and the Republic of Colombia - Mr. Silva is pleased to hear your views as well as many others on this important issue.
This issue has been the source of considerable discussion, by a great number of people from different points of view, and quite rightly. Presently, it is before the House of Commons at the Second Reading stage and from there will most likely proceed to Committee where further scrutiny will take place.
That being said, Mr. Silva, has asked for a full human rights review of the situation in Columbia before any final decision is taken on the bill.
Mr. Silva appreciates and understands your concerns and you may be assured that your comments and observations will be fully considered by him as the debate on this matter continues.
Should you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact our office.
Yours sincerely,
Jeffrey Valois
Legislative Assistant
Office of Mario Silva, MP
Davenport

skdadl

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Re: FTA agreements with Peru, Panama, Colombia
« Reply #44 on: September 21, 2009, 06:00:06 PM »
Why wouldn't Silva tell us how he intends to vote on second reading (which has been delayed)? I mean, it is possible to vote against the bill this time around.

 

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