Canadian politics

Canada, the Arctic power…

Until last week, I’d been away and incommunicado for a couple of months, working on a ship without internet access, so I’ve been out of touch with the news. Pretty much all I heard while I was out was the NDP winning in Nova Scotia, the Pens beating the Wings, and Michael Jackson finally going to hell. I must have missed the bit about the federal Tories tanking in the polls, because that *has* to be what’s behind the recent Arctic bloviations by Peter Mackay and official non-pronouncements like the establishment of a web page to show how little much we are living up to our claims to be an “Arctic nation”. And please forgive my cynicism at pronouncements like the promised shipbuilding agreement from earlier in the week.

Speaking as one who works on Arctic issues and has to work with others from other Arctic nations frequently, these are utter embarrassments.

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13 thoughts on “Canada, the Arctic power…

  1. Greetings to my fellow ‘koggers and all who just happen by. The ship I’m a crewmember of is on it’s way to the Arctic right now (although currently we’re in St. John’s) to serve, as I understand it, as a floating backdrop for Harper and MacKay to make some announcements from. There may also be some flagwaving involved. After all, the reason our government is suddenly interested in the Arctic is the sudden accessability of all those nice, valuable resources that used to be buried under the snow and ice all the time. We’ve got to let the other interested nations know that we won’t give them up without a halfhearted fight done on the cheap.
    I haven’t been following MacKay’s latest pronouncements from his potato patch but I been hearing the “We’re gonna build new ships” statement for several years. The government invariably decides on a class of ship that will be inadequete for the job of year-round patrolling of the region and it frequently seems like they’re recycling the announcement anyway. The primary feature of our Arctic policy seems to be wait two years then say it again. The rubes will think it’s something new.
    Both Harper and MacKay will be on board my ship on this trip but I doubt that they’ll ask for my opinion. Bit of a shame really. I’ve no desire for promotion and a healthy disdain for the pair of them.

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  2. Things must be different in the Navy, Doug – in the Army, there’s no chance in hell that they ever let us CSS tradespeople near enough to the VIP’s to voice an opinion – I can’t think why, I have some positive, happy opinions to share with them. It was good to run into you today, hope you had a good supper at the Yellowbelly…

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  3. Glad you like it Kev. Personally, I’ve never liked our national anthem, fawning, simpering thing that it is, full of grand statements that won’t be fulfilled. Kind of explains why conservatives like it, doesn’t it. If it ever comes to a referendum my vote’s for “Northwest Passage” by Stan Rogers.
    Dan,we’ve already been told how to answer the media – affirm the north’s importance and then change the topic to our area of expertise. Under no circumstances are we to tell the PM (or the press for that matter) that we’d vote for a sack of dead pedophiles before we’d vote for a conservative. Well, that’s what I was ordered to do. I’m not sure about the rest of the crew.
    What’s annoying about this is that I fully agree with the idea that it’s important to assert our sovereignty over our northern territories. My complaint is that, as always with the Canadian Forces, we the members of the CF aren’t permitted to express an actual opinion beyond the assigned party line. Kind of sounds like I may have signed up for the Conservative party, doesn’t it?

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  4. Glad you like it Kev. Personally, I’ve never liked our national anthem, fawning, simpering thing that it is, full of grand statements that won’t be fulfilled. Kind of explains why conservatives like it, doesn’t it. If it ever comes to a referendum my vote’s for “Northwest Passage” by Stan Rogers.
    Dan,we’ve already been told how to answer the media – affirm the north’s importance and then change the topic to our area of expertise. Under no circumstances are we to tell the PM (or the press for that matter) that we’d vote for a sack of dead pedophiles before we’d vote for a conservative. Well, that’s what I was ordered to do. I’m not sure about the rest of the crew.
    What’s annoying about this is that I fully agree with the idea that it’s important to assert our sovereignty over our northern territories. My complaint is that, as always with the Canadian Forces, we the members of the CF aren’t permitted to express an actual opinion beyond the assigned party line. Kind of sounds like I may have signed up for the Conservative party, doesn’t it?

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  5. Not quite sure what happened with my previous comment, as often happens when I try to be clever with computers. I’ll just assume that Kevvyd will make the required adjustments. Ignore the duplicated portion.

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  6. Doug,
    You probably only meant to send one of those emails, but I opted to just remove a duplicate portion of one of them to leave the “sack of dead pedophiles” reference. I like it and I’m interested to see if it will engender some weird google results. 😉

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  7. Well, I did a search on google for the phrase – this site didn’t come up, but I can honestly say that this was the *second*-most disturbing search result I’ve ever gotten….

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  8. the search itself isn’t too bad – it looks like it leads mostly to some blogs ranting about Michael Jackson. Still, I can understand your caution.

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