Green jelly: free trade

Diana French tackles community consultation, Harper's help for veterans, going to the movies and free trade.

W

hat do the community forest proposal by the city/Williams Lake Band, and Initial Options proposed by SD#27’s have in common? In each instance the proponents failed to consult beforehand with the people who will be most affected.

A lot of angst would be avoided if politicians (and corporations) talked to the victims of a project before barging ahead with it. I believe every political group should seek and heed advice from stakeholders groups, be they ad hoc task forces (e.g. swimming pool) or standing committees (Parent Advisory Councils)

***

Remembrance Day has come and gone. I had a hard time listening to Prime Minister Harper’s speech on the occasion. If he really cares about war veterans he’d be treating the living vets with respect and honour and not forcing them to go to court to get their entitlements from his government.

***

GD#5 and I took GD’s #6 (8 years old) and #7(five years old) to see Hotel Transylvania at the Sunday Matinee. The movie is about Count Dracula inviting a bunch of monsters to a birthday bash for his 118-year-old daughter. The monsters are deliciously gross, ranging from a big blob of green jelly to a family of werewolves. The little girls loved it but nothing on screen seems to scare them, they know it’s all make believe.                                                                                                                                                                 ***

Let’s hear it for free trade agreements. Claiming the Quebec government’s moratorium on fracking (hydraulic fracturing) for natural gas violates their rights under the North American Free-Trade agreement (NAFTA), the US energy firm Lone Pine Resources Inc. is demanding  some 250 million in compensation. Under NAFTA’s controversial Chapter 11, U.S. and Mexican companies can sue Ottawa if they feel they have been wronged by a government policy or action. So we either let them mess up our country, or pay them not to. What a great deal for us.

Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is a former Tribune editor, retired teacher, historian, and book author.

 

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