Harper slimes another one

Why would we ever want to complicate things more by allowing a foreign company a vested and far reaching interest in our affairs?

I would like to bring the attention of your readers to a travesty which saw our federal government, under the autocratic tutelage of Steven Harper, approve a deal that allows the Chinese National Offshore Oil Company ( CNOOC ) to obtain a controlling interest in Nexen which is a midsized Alberta oil company.  This affair is wrong on so many levels for Canada and Canadians yet we have allowed Mr Harper to slime another one past us.

Tankers navigating  treacherous coastal passages, oil royalties, shale gas development, pipelines,  the oil sands, Canadian jobs lost, potential environmental Armageddon;  the list goes on and on.  These are all controversial issue we are struggling to regulate and deal with in our own land, our own way.  Why would we ever want to complicate things more by allowing a foreign company, which in this case is little more than a corporate puppet of the Chinese government, a vested and far reaching  interest in our affairs?

If this were not dangerous enough,  Mr Harper would also like to slime past us, the Foreign Investment Protection Agreement with China ( FIPA ) which is an instrument that in the simplest terms is designed to protect the interest of Chinese companies (read Chinese government) when buying up Canadian companies.

Of course, the agreement is reciprocal in that Canadian companies would ostensibly be protected in China.  That part though is laughable. To think that a country as secretive, autocratic and tyrannical as China would somehow look after Canadian interest within the frame work of a pseudo legal system that can incarcerate, torture, execute or harvest the organs of its citizens without  anything that we would recognize a due process.

But  Mr. Harper’s FIPA gets even better.  Not only would Chinese companies have special rights in our land and over our resources,  but if things go wrong, our government can keep it secret. That’s right, if we don’t treat them right they can sue us  and Mr. Harper can settle with them behind closed door. What a great deal for Canada.

To look at it another way, Mr. Harper is playing Texas Hold’em in a game with an unscrupulous opponent. His chips are the treasures of our nation, the natural resources that belong to us, our children and grand children. Let’s get rid of FIPA, and Mr. Harper out of this game.  Wake up Canada before we are “all in”.

Robert Hall

Campbell River

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