Friday, June 29, 2012

The Coming CRASH in Canada

 The Harper neoliberals clutch onto power by a strategy of election fraud, perversion of parliamentary practice, misuse of prorogation (the closing down of parliament), violations of the office of the Governor General, wholesale lying to the population and to members of the House of Commons, destruction of conventional government sources of public information, coercion of groups critical of repressive State tactics, secretly negotiated international agreements that suck away individual and national rights, increased use of police forces to suppress traditional freedoms, legislation to mask corporate rape of the environment, and the wholesale appropriation of the Mainstream Press and Media.

Despite - in fact because of - employing those and other forms of deceit and dishonesty, the Harper forces may be moving inevitably to the collapse of their flashy House of Cards ... or to the establishment of a permanent, anti-democratic, semi-fascist state. The rupture of the Harper pattern of deception will be brought about by the fundamental nature of its truculent, psychopathic ideology and, especially, the antiquated and destructive Economic Religion of the Harperites.

That religion is manifested most visibly by the Harper approach to corporate rule, to management of the economy, and especially to its omnipresent real estate policy – a House of Cards if there ever was one. Look at it.

But first – consider the Harper group’s use of the Mainstream Press and Media as a weapon of deceit. Only the other day (June 27, 2012) – attached to the news that the Postmedia near-monopoly on newspapers is selling its Toronto head office because of debt – a former editor weighed in on the state of newspapers in Canada.

He outlined a number of truths. The former editor lists the dirty negatives of media concentration, bad financial policy, failure to invest in news, stupid management, rigid corporate ignorance of how to run news gathering and presentation.  Etcetera.

He may have missed what is perhaps the central fact.  Intended suicide.  That is the purposeful misuse of media to misinform the public … inevitably alienating readers. As a (very successful) entrepreneur said to me decades ago, the bottom line for investment capital is a six per cent return. He said that angrily as he was withdrawing, wounded, from an unconventional venture. When the 6% base level of profit is not present to keep an enterprise going, then something else has to be the motivation.

Look at the neo-liberal (what I choose to think of as the neo-fascist) National Post (a Postmedia holding). Over its whole lifetime I don’t think it has ever made a profit, not even six per cent.  When at ten years old it hadn’t made profit in a single year, the neon lights were blazing, the trumpets sounding, the billboards aglow with its real purpose in life. 

The National Post is not being run as a conventional corporate enterprise but as a propaganda instrument, an ideological brainwasher, a major political force for indoctrination of the Canadian public.  It passes from hand to hand.  Its owners often seem to be greedy fools (as the former editor suggests). But it is kept afloat by the corporate community in Canada, I allege, to falsify Canadian reality, to deceive Canadians, to have them sanction and endorse inhuman and destructive government and corporate policy. 

What appears to be an “intended suicide” – running a corporation that does nothing but lose money – is, in fact, a simple, overall, reactionary corporate Canadian policy. It is a present expense paid now in order to win bigger rewards down the road. Corporations and organizations of corporations (think of John Manley and the Canadian Council of Chief Executives) spend a lot of money on the propaganda of sell-out, as do most of the Mainstream Press and Media. There is no immediate reward – as in Manley’s recent call for the end of “supply management” that benefits Canadian farmers and the overall Canadian economy.

But when the private corporations kill off another democratic institution in the country, they are closer to unregulated, unsupervised, unchecked corporate rule of the country.

Stephen Harper just won a place at the Trans Pacific Partnership table.  It will demand that Canada end its supply management marketing structure. Of course, it was a totally unrelated event when John Manley, spokesperson for the sell-out corporations of Canada, just happened – at almost the same moment – to begin beating the drums for destruction of supply management in Canada. Harper government and the corporations working hand-in-hand?  Of course they will deny doing so.

Canadians will learn later – if they don’t learn sooner – that policy of the corporations and policies of the Harper government are one and the same.

Canadians believe the last major gaffe of a Governor General was the willingness of Michaelle Jean (under severe pressure) to grant Stephen Harper prorogation (the closing down) of parliament when she should not have done so.  That decision by Ms. Jean can never be forgiven.

But an equal violation of the Governor General’s office has happened with Canadians hardly noticing. Wanting to cover for the Brian Mulroney involvement in the Airbus (bribery) affair, Stephen Harper sought someone to make terms for the last Inquiry (2009) that would shield Mulroney (and Harper himself). 

He chose a university president, David Johnston, who tied the hands of the judge examining the relation between Brian Mulroney and Karlheinz Schreiber, lobbyist.  The judge, Justice Jeffrey Oliphant, was prevented from gaining any of the information considered by many as most key to the Mulroney/Schreiber relation. The ex-judge was only able to say that none of Brian Mulroney’s testimony was credible. Criminal charges almost certainly would have arisen from a fair and real Inquiry.

Shortly after that, the university president David Johnston was made Governor General of Canada from which position he can work openly for Stephen Harper policy, as he did covertly, I believe, before his “elevation”. One might believe that for betraying the trust of the Canadian people David Johnston was rewarded with the position of Governor General. So much for “the Queen’s representative in Canada”.

Repeatedly, the Harperites claim that it is not government’s place to interfere in the economy and the workings of society. What they mean is that they will not interfere to assure security, harmony, and well-being for Canadians.  But they interfere every day, almost every hour, on behalf of private corporations and the wealthy inside and outside Canada who are engaged in profiteering from the general wealth of the country.

One of their most obvious interventions on behalf of the profiteers is and has been in the Real Estate market. Since at least 2007 indications have pointed to the need for careful handling of Real Estate transactions in Canada – the need for ceilings on loans, assured down payment sizes, limited amortization periods for all mortgages, and strict regulation of loans guaranteed by government. None of those things has happened.  Only pretence after pretence.  That is because the Harper government generally and finance minister Jim Flaherty in particular work for the banks.

As the National Post (June 22, 2012 FP3) comments: “the banks’ consumer lending business has been their main profit engine basically for the last three years….” And Jim Flaherty works for the banks, not for Canadians. The Harperites have permitted the debt-to-income ratio of Canadian households to reach 152% … and rising. That is the measure of how much of overall income is needed to pay off debts. It now takes the average Canadian household 152% of overall income to pay off debts, meaning it can’t pay them and is permanently in debt – and at great risk. 

But the 152% figure is the average.  That means there are many Canadians households without debt at all.  We don’t know how many since the Harperites have slashed Statistics Canada’s fact-gathering powers.  But we do know that there are a large number of Canadian households far above the 152% debt-to-income ratio.  If there are many Canadian households without debt, there have to many with a 200% and 250% debt-to-income ratio.

Since the Harper government only intervenes in the economy to assist Canadian and foreign corporations to make profit here, it has set up ordinary Canadians-in-debt to be roasted when the housing market tumbles – as it appears to have begun to do. To assure huge bank profits and obscene top-banker pay-outs, the Harper group is happy to gore ordinary Canadians. If the present slump deepens, thousands of Canadian households will be desperate, will be unable to keep their heads above water, will lose their homes, their jobs, and will go bankrupt as the job market shrinks and construction slows or comes to a standstill.

All that has been visible and predictable since the U.S. and European housing crashes began years ago. But the Economic Religion of the Harperites is to serve corporations and punish ordinary Canadians, and so nothing of substance has been done to protect the whole economy. A crash will send the Harper government rushing to assist … the banks.

As the truth about the Harper Economic Religion becomes clear to Canadians - and the crash in the housing market should tell all - the crash of the Stephen Harper government should be guaranteed.  The only good thing about the coming crash in Canada will be the end of the vicious, undemocratic, vengeful rule of Stephen Harper and his toadies. You read it first, here.

Robin Mathews


Ron S. said...

Absolutely true. Harper and his minions are breaking Canada apart fot bank profits and BoD positions once they are turfed. I hope Canadians see through this smoke screen soon.

Grant G said...

Dead cat stock market bounce..

Magical debt repayment beans have not sprouted.

And the suffering public`s reward for this false hope.

Oil spikes $7 dollars today.

Happy Canada day folks


e.a.f. said...

we here in b.c. have the highest consumer debt load in Canada. this should be no surprize because housing costs more here than any other place in Canada.

people trying to maintain a half decent life style are using their credit cards to do so. when they get maxed out there will be bankruptcies galore. The Vancouver housing market seems to be loosing some steam, but who knows. A lot depends upon China's economy.

Harper has built his "empire" on China & if they fail, so do we. We can only wait & see what is to happen with the pipelines & tankers. If there is a ground swell of opposition once stevie slime tries to build them, who knows what could happen. Stevie slime might have to pack his bags & find something else to do.

Governments get away with what the citizens allow them to. As more & more people are impacted by the changes stevie slime has brought, the more people will decide it is time for him to go.

Yes I am sure he will try to rig more elctions. Who knows, Canada, once a country which was asked to surprvise elections in other countries, may be asking other countries to supervise ours. we only have to look to the u.s.a. to see how republican states are attempting to disenfrancise their citizens. Can stevie slime be far behind? I don't think so.

It would seem stevie slime & his slimers have started their anti NDP caimpaign again with ads attacking Mulcair. I think this time the attack ads may fail.

they were used against Dion & Iggy with success. I do believe people are on to Harper & his crew. Attack ads work better in the U.S.A. than in Canada. Harper doesn't under stand Americans & Canadians are fundamentally different.

Although many might like the idea of shopping in the U.S.A. & bringing back more goods, it does hurt small business & some large ones also. They may not be so willing to support stevie slime next time round.

I look forward to seeing stevie slime exit stage left, whether he falls down the stairs at home or gets voted out of power, I don't care, I just want the guy gone.

kootcoot said...

"Stevie slime might have to pack his bags & find something else to do."

Hopefully Slimeball Steve will be forced to give up trying to turn Canada into a fasimile of Red State America and just move to the real thing where he can be surrounded by Tea Baggers, fundies, racists and homophobes just like him, and not even have to lie anymore. Of course he couldn't be Preznit, having been born in Toronto, but he could still be governor of, say Wisconsin, when Scott Walker decides to move on to his Koch Brothers provided sinicure in the sky. Or really he would have a shot in any of the red states infested with creatures dumber than the average Canadian with mental disabilities.

Lizzie May, who speaks too much truth to even be a politician, claims that Harper thinks "we" lost the War of 1812. Maybe that's because with a different outcome he would have been born in America.

Hugh said...

LNG plants to get free gas power?

"B.C. collects a royalty on the gas that producers sell to customers, but there is no royalty on gas that is used to produce gas in the field. It is not clear whether this exemption also applies to gas that is used to run pipelines and generate the electricity needed to produce LNG."

Grant G said...

LNG is gonna be a bust, another corporate welfare industry, in not outright failure.

e.a.f. said...

One of the major reasons realestate has risen in B.C., is the off shore buyers, who use the houses as an investment to be flipped. If B.C. did what PEI did yrs ago we would be in better shape. India does not permit non-citizens to own land. That is what we should be doing.

People getting in over their heads, well they are partially to blame for that. Yes the banks, government have a responsibility to ensure mortgages are properly qulafied for.

No one needs a 3000 sq ft. house, granite counter tops, 3 bathrooms, etc. It is what people want. All of thesse "wants" contribute to a destruction of the enviornment. Where do people think granite comes from? It comes from a mountain, which gets chopped & blasted up.

The newspapers you mentioned, yes I agree. In my opinion they are little more than propaganda sheets. They serve the corporations by getting their message out & convincing people, who'se interests they do not have at heart, that they, the corporations are right.

People do have a responsibility to ensure they stay informed. They don't. Many are just happy to follow along with their favourite sports team & purchase their "junk".

when I was about 12 my mother told me the Vancouver Sun was a liberal newspaper & not to be trusted. They were big company newspapers. That was over 50 yrs ago.

"There is nothing so blind as those who will not see."

Hugh said...

Here's a recent story about the carbon offset issue:

BC Govt forces schools and hospitals to give money to Encana and other companies. Won't help Liberals at election time.

kootcoot said...


I tend to see things from a similar perspective on many issues and this comment is more to reassure you than an attempt to be critical, or a concern troll. but......

"Where do people think granite comes from? It comes from a mountain, which gets chopped & blasted up."

As long as the mountain they are chopping up isn't say El Capitan or Half Dome in Yosemite or the Stawamus Chief, there is little worry that we will run out of granite before we run out of water to drink or air to breath. Worrying about granite is just one notch less unnecessary than worrying about running out of silicon (the most abundant element on this planet) from building too many computers and smart phones.

As with everything else, from forestry to mining to agriculture it is not so important WHAT we do (we all need toilet paper and 2 x 6 and guitar tops and need food to eat and minerals for all kinds of uses) but HOW you do it and we must learn to do these things in a sustainable manner.

Really that is all Tom Mulcair is talking about, that supposedly "trained" economist either can't or refuses to understand.

And Robin, as usual certainly did hit it out the park with this one, which I published at my place as well.

Anonymous said...

are you nuts..the bc real estate has never gone down..if you were any brain at all you would know bc real estate is a rags to riches must think..dont buy if you cant afford the interest..simple dont live beyond your means..if you live by this you will always be fine..i am

Hugh said...

"Horgan said he has learned that BC Hydro's biggest generating system, on the Peace River, will be idle for several weeks. Meanwhile, electricity trade data from trading grid operators suggests that Hydro has been selling at a loss into the western grid to dispose of the power that private operators keep feeding into it."

BC Hydro debt $18 billion by 2015, interest payment of $631 million in 2015.

Anonymous said...

Off topic, dealing with the privatization of Canada's prisons. Prisons should not be put in the hands of private profiteers under any circumstances. Not that I like crime, but ...


Anonymous said...

Prison topic again:

Anonymous said...

I think you are brain dead. The real estate market crash has begun. Better take off them rosey glasses