Trade isn’t always a good thing

You can always tell when the Conservatives have something that appeals to their base — take the long gun registry.

You can always tell when the Conservatives have something that appeals to their base — take the long gun registry.  Members of the government constantly inform us of what they have done to the registry. The repeal warranted a separate debate, with no limitations on time.  By this standard, they are very, very embarrassed about the Chinese-Canadian free trade agreement.  No debate.  No boasting.  No information.  Rather like the agreement itself.

Why do I have to listen to Rick Mercer to find out that there is a 15-year notification required for cancellation of the agreement?  NAFTA only needs six months.

Why are the Chinese demanding that everything be secret? If this was so good for everyone, as Colin Mayes and his sidekick from the People’s Republic of China imply, wouldn’t they be parading it around like they did with the gun registry?  What do they have to hide?

Now Mayes informs us that we should be happy because Prince Rupert Port is investing in a wood pellet terminal. Are pellets the best use of our forest lands? Are our coal mines only profitable if we have temporary Chinese miners working there?

Trade can be good, but it can also be bad.  Otherwise, Mr. Mayes would be crowing about the good results of the Opium wars, which forced China to accept opium in exchange for their exports, rather than the silver bullion they originally demanded. If the only requirement of prosperity was exports, the copperbelt countries of Zambia and the DRC would be superpowers. They can’t even afford roads.

Canadian oil can be refined and used here, and thus maintain and rebuild our infrastructure, pay our pensions, and provide healthcare, or it can be exported raw to China where it will build Chinese infrastructure.

It can’t do both. Must we wait until our highways look like something out of Mad Max… or Zambia?

Richard Smiley

 

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