Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Highway of Heroes?

It is Remembrance Day in Canada. The Saskatchewan government just announced the naming of the Trans-Canada highway between Regina and Moose Jaw our Highway of Heroes. This is to follow Ontario, to honour the memory of Canadians killed in the war in Afghanistan. Politicians and the mass media have been drowning us in PR pieces on what a great job we did there supporting the US/NATO war. A war for what? To keep in power Hamid Karzai, the corrupt president put in office by the U.S. government. To celebrate the Afghan parliament, which is dominated by misogynist warlords and drug lords. Our government has been there to block the participation of the democratic parties in the electoral process and to support the rewriting of the Afghan constitution to make the country completely dependent on the free market, free trade and foreign ownership.

Meanwhile, the two main parties in Greece have formed a temporary coalition government in order to impose the draconian “adjustments” on their own people. All of this, of course, is to protect the big European banks who made bad loans to the Greek government. Everyone who has half a brain knows that Greece will not be able to pay her debts and a default is just a matter of time. Another general strike has been called.

Suddenly, it was discovered that Italy has a huge debt and given its weak economy cannot pay it off. More political juggling. Another austerity budget is being imposed on the Italian people, a guarantee that the economy will further decline and debts will be impossible to pay. Such is the state of advanced capitalism today. Even the European Community Bank is warning that Europe is now falling into a double dip recession.

Far away in hinterland Saskatchewan, the oil is still flowing, potash is being dug out of the ground and exported, this year’s agricultural crops were blessed with good weather. Thus the right of centre Saskatchewan Party won the November 7 election with 65% of the vote cast, the largest margin of victory in the province’s history. The social democrat opposition, the NDP, was reduced to just nine seats and Dwain Lingenfelter, the leader brought back by the party’s caucus from his post at Nexen Energy, lost his own seat. The NDP had a good progressive platform, but with Lingenfelter, a strong neoliberal, as leader, they had no credibility.

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