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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Canada's New Year's resolution: Get Tough With Rights Abusers

Canada's New Year Resolution for 2008 according to Diane Francis of the National Post newspaper:

1- A disclosure law requiring countries that abuse human rights, according to our definition, to disclose all their existing holdings in our economies, including stock market stakes, bonds or any ownership in private companies, hedge, mutual or private-equity funds.

2- Canada should impose investment bans against Saudis, Iranians and others, barring them from ownership in our economies until they reform.

3- A ban against immigration, visa work, tourism or students from these abusing countries.

Posted by Winston on December 26, 2007 in International Affairs | Permalink


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Dream on.

The conservative movement you claim to support is the most likely to be swayed by the lure of big investments and cheap labour. You can't have it both ways. The immigration policies that we're stuck with were dreamed up by the Mulroney Government. It's the one big fault of a free market.

Posted by: dp | 2007-12-26 6:23:56 PM

dDP said:
"The immigration policies that we're stuck with were dreamed up by the Mulroney Government"

I'd say it was Trudeau's socialist experiment that's responsible for today's immigration mess.

Posted by: bocanut | 2007-12-26 8:25:39 PM

--Or-- we could help deal with the fact that that we have tense relationships with some of these countries by continuing to allow investment between our economies, ensuring that we have a mutual interest in the prosperity of both countries rather than increasing animosity and removing incentive systems that could help us move towards peace and stability.

Quite frankly, you seem a lot more concerned about foreign ownership, which is just part of free market enterprise and international economic progress, than you are about any human rights abuses.

(On the immigration front - allowing people to move as they see fit is the best way to help people all over the world achieve better lives for themselves. I'd agree that we need to stop subsidizing or punishing certain cultural traditions, religions and/or lifestyles, but quite frankly those policies have nothing to do with immigration.)

Posted by: Janet | 2007-12-26 10:53:56 PM

I just re-read your post - on #3: Seriously? --Seriously??-- You think that the way to solve a problem of human rights abuses in a country is to condemn people to be trapped in those countries rather than allowing them to escape to free nations like Canada?

Posted by: Janet | 2007-12-26 10:58:19 PM

I am confused. Canada is forever screaming obscenities at the USA for interfering in other cultures and other societies.

Canada usually places the culture an traditions of other sovereign nations and even some nations (Indians, Quebecers and now Muslim enclaves) within our own borders above our own watered down culture. Whatever it actually is these days.

Canada is the first to line against imperialist notions.

Yet we are now to suggest that we have a right to tell those nations named in Dianne F's column that they cannot treat their own citizens as they see fit?

You can't have it both ways. We don't have to like what they do, but logic dictates that we will simply have to tolerate how other people choose to run their own show. To penalize our own economies to make a hypocritical point is stupid.

Right now we are engaged in having our HRC shut down Macleans Magazine and the writings of great Mark Steyn. They have already gone a long way to bankrupting the Western Standard print edition with Muslim cartoon comedy.

Canada is in a schizophrenic state.

Posted by: John West | 2007-12-27 12:20:56 AM

For the originators of the shift in Canadian immigration policy (i.e almost exclusively of European origin)one must travel back to 1944 and review the efforts of Kalmen Kaplansky and the Jewish Labour Congress. In 1944 the JLC had persuaded the TLC (Toronto & District Labour Committee)to set up a permanent National Standing Committee on Racial Discrimination "to promote the unity of Canadians of all racial origins, and to combat and counteract any evidence of racial discrimination in industry in particular and in life in general." Until this time the TLC Platform demanded "exclusion of all races that cannot be properly assimilated into the national life of Canada."

Irving Himel was another nodal actor in the human rights community. He served as lobbyist and legal counsel for the Committee for the Repeal of the Chinese Immigration Act...

In addition, the Toronto/JLC labour committee helped to challenge immigration law discriminating against people from the Caribbean.

However, dp is correct. The responsibility for the move to mass immigration, driven by labour costs, and the wholesale demographic change of the city of Toronto, lies solely with Mulroney.

Posted by: DJ | 2007-12-27 12:30:38 AM

When you let the devil into your house, you'd better get ready for hell.

Posted by: John West | 2007-12-27 12:48:02 AM

Hello all you Mulroney haters. You are totally wrong. In 1983 or 1984, David Collenette adressed a group of constituents in the auditorium of East York Collegiate. He was Minister of State for Multiculturism in Pierre Trudeau's government. His speech stated the intent of changing the focus of immigration from Europe to Asia, South America, Africa and the Caribbean. This all came to pass. As I was an interested constituent,I was there. Mulroney had one major accomplishment, causing the popularity of the Reform Party.

Posted by: Brian Higgins | 2007-12-27 1:57:11 AM

"His speech stated the intent of changing the focus of immigration from Europe to Asia, South America, Africa and the Caribbean."

No one is arguing that point. In fact that position can be laid at the feet of Paul Martin Sr. with the Repeal of the Chinese Immigration Act though must trace it Pearson's reforms. The point about Mulroney was the change to "mass" immigation which stayed in place even during economic downturns. It was continued by Chretien, Martin and now Harper intends to increase it.

Posted by: DJ | 2007-12-27 2:26:04 AM

Janet wrote: "I just re-read your post - on #3: Seriously? --Seriously??-- You think that the way to solve a problem of human rights abuses in a country is to condemn people to be trapped in those countries rather than allowing them to escape to free nations like Canada?"

This is a common sentiment in Canada -- the idea that we should run our immigration policy for the benefit of others. Why not run it for the benefit of Canada? We are the ones who have to live with the results.

We take in too many immigrants. We take in the wrong kind of immigrants. And we have a refugee determination process that cannot distinguish between legitimate refugees and phonies. Other than that it is a wonderful system.

Posted by: JMD | 2007-12-27 6:07:42 AM


You wrote "Harper intends to increase it" (immigration). When did he say this?

Posted by: JP | 2007-12-27 6:56:07 AM

JP ~

In our resident racist's mind, it matters not if P.M. Harper actually said it or not.

Posted by: obc | 2007-12-27 7:04:38 AM

OK, ignoring the nonsense that is the sentiment that immigration must cost us something, (It doesn't - welfare state and nanny state policies do, but immigration without these problems is a benefit for everyone involved), the point of the main post seemed to be that we should be taking some sort of stand against human rights abuses.

Refusing people who are the subjects of the abuse we'd apparently be trying to fight refuge from said rights abuses does nothing - NOTHING - to encourage improvement of the conditions in that country (nor do any of the other proposals) but it does trap the people who we think need to be saved from one route to salvation.

Wanting the country to be successful is one thing - wanting to do it by holding our foot to the throats of the disadvantaged is nothing to advocate and would certainly be nothing to be proud of.

Posted by: Janet | 2007-12-27 2:26:45 PM


From CanWest News Service/Ottawa Citizen (Tories increase immigration by Andrew Mayeda, November 1, 2006):

"The Tory government has set one of the most aggressive immigration targets in the last 15 years in a move that some immigration experts say is carefully designed to woo votes among new Canadians.

In tabling its annual report in Parliament on Tuesday, Citizenship and Immigration Canada said it plans to admit between 240,000 and 265,000 permanent residents in 2007. The target this year is 225,000 to 255,000, and the government expects the final figure will be in the upper end of that range.

The 2007 target represents an increase of 5.2 per cent over this year's target, measured by the change in the midpoint of the range. The highest previous increase in the last 15 years was in 2002, when the target rose 4.7 per cent.

Citizenship and Immigration Minister Monte Solberg said the new targets will help employers looking for workers as well as refugees and immigrant families hoping to reunite."

[. . .]

"Wanting the country to be successful is one thing - wanting to do it by holding our foot to the throats of the disadvantaged is nothing to advocate and would certainly be nothing to be proud of."

What a pile of crap!!!

Right, so putting the gov't's foot on the throats of the founding people is much prefererable, right?

Posted by: DJ | 2007-12-27 5:45:02 PM

"The population of Canada has broken through the 33 million mark, the latest census data analysis reveals. At the beginning of October the population was estimated to be 33,091,200, growing strongly on the back of increased Canadian immigration across the country.

Canadian immigration added 71,600 people in the three months from July 1st. This constitutes the biggest increase in 30 years. The overall population growth was the strongest in six years."

Annualized, this ammounts to over 286,000 an increase of 12% over the upper range set for 2007.

It's a joke! Liberals in blue suits!

Posted by: DJ | 2007-12-27 5:59:43 PM

Go back far enough and we all come from immigrant stock- even our aboriginal population. I have nothing against immigration but do believe that our government should do a better job of vetting applicants. The provision should also be made that if found guilty of certain types of crime the immigrant should be immediately be sent back to the country of origin even if they claim that their life is in danger.

We should also demand that when they receive their Canadian citizenship they should be made to give up their previous citizenship and passport. If you are here you should commit to being here. Canada should not be used as a hotel as one Somali female immigrant put it and it should not be treated solely as an escape hatch.

Posted by: DML | 2007-12-27 8:58:13 PM

I have no problem with immigration. I DO have a problem with immigration for the purpose of propping up a failing socialist economy. Our economy is based on our labor...the number of tax slaves we have. In other words, immigration isn't really about humanitarianism anymore as it should be. Its about a body count.
And IMHO we stop all foreign aid to rights abusers and dictatorships. Foreign aid is usually a transfer of taxed money from poor people in rich countries to rich people in poor countries anyway.

Posted by: JC | 2007-12-28 5:18:50 PM

"Go back far enough and we all come from immigrant stock-"

So what? Does that mean that the founding European people, the settlers that carved this country from a vast wilderness, must be replaced by mass third world immigration? Bring in 50 million South Asians and see what happens to Canada. If you what to live in the third world, why don't you move there?

Posted by: DJ | 2007-12-28 9:40:49 PM

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