December 11, 2018

We Stopped the Unfair Elections Act

Today you and I have huge reason to celebrate!

After four long years of fighting in the courts to repeal the Harper Conservatives’ anti-democratic Fair Elections Act, late last night the Senate passed Bill C-76, which largely does exactly that.

And it wouldn’t have happened without Council of Canadians supporters like you!

Without question, the constitutional challenge launched in 2014 by the Council of Canadians and our friends at the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) was critical to mounting the constitutional application that prompted a Liberal election commitment to expunge the voter suppression measures we challenged, and then to assemble the evidence of leading experts to make retreat from that commitment unthinkable.

December 11, 2018

Photo by The Toronto Star

U.S. President Donald Trump, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto signed a trade agreement to replace NAFTA at the end of November ­– a deal that groups, including the Council of Canadians, say is still fundamentally flawed.

A recent article on Common Dreams website examines reactions from concerned groups who say the new NAFTA deal includes devastating impacts for farmers, workers and the environment.

Political leaders are not even in agreement about how the new deal will be implemented. President Trump is saying this is an entirely new deal and he will be asking U.S. Congress to scrap the original NAFTA deal. Prime Minister Trudeau, on the other hand, has noted that much of the original NAFTA is still in place.

Council of Canadians Honorary Chairperson Maude Barlow says the deal in its current form has "many poison pills."

December 11, 2018

“It could be argued that we are now in the midst of a coup d’état in slow motion. Democracy is weakening, corporatism is strengthening, yet none of us have chosen this route for our society, in spite of which our elites continue down it quite happily.”

These are the ominous words in the opening of the trailer for the new documentary The Corporate Coup d’État, which features journalist Chris Hedges, philosopher John Ralston Saul, activists Maude Barlow and Naomi Klein and others.

Produced by White Pine Pictures and directed by Fred Peabody, this “investigative and persuasive documentary blends the insights of philosophers, writers and journalists with the experiences of citizens of the Rust Belt in the U.S. Midwest, where the steel industry once flourished, but where closures and outsourcing have left urban areas desolate and hopeless. It’s here that Donald Trump finds some of his most fervent supporters, as he’s not considered part of the hated Washington establishment.”

December 10, 2018

Council of Canadians Honorary Chairperson Maude Barlow, a world renowned water warrior, spoke to a packed auditorium about the future of water as part of the Nobel Week Dialogue.

The event is an annual conference that is held in advance of Nobel Week. It brings together a select group of the world's leading scientists, policy makers and thinkers for a series of thought-provoking sessions and working groups. According to the Nobel Prize website, “with this event the Nobel Institutions aim to deepen the dialogue between the scientific community and the rest of society on issues connected with the Nobel Prize and of importance for the world.”

Maude Barlow, who is the recipient of the 2015 Right Livelihood Award, known as “the Alternative Nobel,” was invited to speak at this prestigious event about her lifelong work as a water activist.

December 7, 2018

New Brunswick now has a Progressive Conservative government in place, under the leadership of pro-fracking and pro-Energy East pipeline Blaine Higgs. Despite having a minority government, they were able to have secure support from the three MLA’s from the People’s Alliance of NB to pass the speech from the throne and have the confidence of the legislature. So the roller coaster of provincial politics seems to have stabilized for the time being, and instead has shifted to the hot topic of fracking or shale gas.