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Posts posted by turningrite

  1. I'm surprised the topic hasn't yet come up on this board, but yesterday the U.S. Supreme Court upheld Trump's travel ban. Of course, the decision was split along partisan lines and was duly criticized along those lines. The most important aspect of the ruling appears to be that it affirms presidential authority to impose immigration policy on national security grounds.

    When listening to news about yesterday's SCOTUS ruling, though, I thought of Trump's comments before and during the election as well as of the National Post story a few days ago (link below) about a Yazidi refugee who recently saw her ISIL slave owner on a bus in London, Ontario. She was able to escape captivity and eventually enter Canada as a refugee, but it appears her ISIL captor was somehow able to get here as well. The author of the NP article comments that "Maybe he's the only ISIL member who slipped though Canada's vetting net, or maybe he's one of a hundred." I recall Trump saying that a travel ban from many Muslim-majority countries is necessary until American authorities can figure out what's going on. Canadian authorities have assured us that super vetting was/is taking place where migration from Middle Eastern conflict zones was/is concerned and those who've raised concerns about the efficacy of this screening in areas characterized by dysfunctional and/or non-existent governance have been dismissed as alarmists, racists and Islamophobes. But was/is Trump simply being prudent? Given the NP piece, I have to wonder.


  2. 9 hours ago, bush_cheney2004 said:

    The battle has been enjoined, and divisive labels are part of the game.  

    I would also point out that the term "visible minority" is part of the language and identity conflict.  Who gets to decide such terms and labels ?

    I will also confess to calling Canadian cities and towns on unceded "aboriginal" (another fun label) territory "settlements" in the context of Israeli/Palestinian discourse and comparisons.   The ideology battles have evolved to the point weaponizing language itself.


    We often seem to disagree on various matters but where this post is concerned I mainly concur with your position(s). I think language has been weaponized and that some of the tone in the debate over Indigenous rights and interests has bizarrely taken on elements common to the settlements dispute in the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. I also find the logic of the "unceded" argument to be quite specious as it is contradictory to the Canadian constitution, which asserts Crown sovereignty over all previously Indigenous-held lands in Canada. This is a consequence of the inclusion in the constitution of the Royal Proclamation of 1763, which is also the legal basis of Indigenous treaty and land claims. I tend to support pursuit of these claims on grounds of their constitutional validity, particularly as governments in Canada have not always fulfilled their obligations under the1763 arrangement or in many cases even acted in good faith with regard to Indigenous rights and interests.

    Indigenous activists can't have it both ways, though, by claiming rights under the constitution while ignoring aspects of the constitution that are inconvenient to them. The emotional and often racialist rhetoric that's emerged to undermine the legitimacy and validity of mainstream Canadians and their society is alarming. Conrad Black has described aspects of the activist Indigenous ideology as amounting to "native blood libels" against the majority population (see link to article, below) although I wouldn't go that far. I do, however, agree with him that "mindless deference" particularly on the part of Canadian leaders to the emerging activist Indigenous ideology is deeply problematic.


  3. 9 hours ago, paxrom said:

    Aluminium and steel industries are key to national defense its something worth protecting that being said... Its not about Canada, we know you guys wouldn't hurt a fly but its about china and their trade practices, you see the Chinese have been importing cheap high quality steel into the us through Canada by relabeling them as Canadian steel. Steel production technique that they stole from us... For some reason your government has decided to drag their feet in confronting these trade practices by china so Trump acted. Oh its not only canada by the way its all the other nafta/ eu countries as well.  

    This is something Obama confronted as well but to no avail. 


    The funny thing here, though, is that the U.S. Commerce Secretary admitted a few days ago that Canada is not actually a security concern where steel (and presumably aluminum) tariffs are concerned. The implication in his position is that the tariffs serve as a negotiating tool in the NAFTA discussions. (See link below.) I realize the U.S. was, in part, trying to circumvent back door access to U.S. markets for U.S. steel, but Trump's heavy-handed tariff approach can best be described as ham-handed. A short while ago, national security was also raised as a rationale to employ presidential fiat to undermine Bombardier's interests in the U.S., a strategy that was later overturned when the U.S. International Trade Commission rejected the White House's logic. Under attack from the Americans, Bombardier forged an alliance with Airbus and effectively sold the product line to it that the Americans were trying to block from U.S. markets, thus strengthening Airbus, which is the biggest foreign competitor to U.S. commercial interests in both American and global airplane markets. I think the general effect of this kind of behavior is best described as blowback. Similar blowback is now occurring with Harley Davidson's decision to serve the EU market with production from outside of the U.S. in order to circumvent the effects of Trump's tariff tantrums.


  4. 6 hours ago, eyeball said:

    I suppose but that's nothing compared to where those conservatives who insist we grow without limit have their heads buried. What is it about conservation that conservatives never ever seem to get?

    In any case, its been obvious for years that a warming climate will causes animals and even plants to seek cooler latitudes, people being no exception.  The implications are that eventually we'll kill them for trying. Self-preservation can be a real bitch which is something people should have considered more carefully.  We didn't have to subject ourselves to being subjects in a behavioural sink experiment but here we are.

    We haven't seen anything yet, and yet....we know full well that when the waterhole shrinks the animals get meaner. 

    Your post reflects a Malthusian philosophy, which is essentially pessimistic. i tend to see the human race as more adaptable, particularly given technological progress. There is emerging evidence that the world's population growth will slow considerably, and the global population may even start to decline, within this century. Even if one buys into your pessimistic climate change-driven and dystopian migrational logic, does it make sense to promote the movement of people from hot latitudes to cold northern ones when by so doing per capita GHG emissions for these migrants increase significantly? To craft policy by assuming the worst possible outcomes seems to me a specious approach. 

  5. 9 hours ago, paxrom said:

    He won't fail. You know why? Because he's an American president.

    He has the world strongest, economic, intellectual, moral, military power at his side. 

    Say what you will of trump personal life but don't forget he is in the office of the presidency. He has the best tools and minds at his disposal. 


    1.) Your response is suggestive of what many in the rest of the world perceive as an American conceit. Actually, it's likely quite possible that an American president can fail by assuming the subservience of the rest of the world to American interests and policies. China will soon eclipse America's economic power and the EU's GDP isn't far behind. (Actually in terms of purchasing power parity, the EU's GDP, when including the UK, surpasses that of the U.S.). Canada is a mere minnow in this shark tank but you shouldn't underestimate broader economic trends that demonstrate the relative decline of the U.S. share of the world's economic activity. Trump can never restore American "greatness" in this regard. The U.S. is now merely one of a few big fish in the economic sea.

    2.) Military power has little applicability to America's trade relations with its allies. And its moral authority has declined considerably as well in the short time Trump has been in office. I recently watched a documentary on the rise of trade in a historical context, which noted that the key component to successful trading relationships is trust among trading partners. Trump is in the process of blowing up trust held by America's closest allies. How will this not backfire? If the NAFTA collapses, as appears likely, many Canadians will likely resist resurrecting anything resembling it. They didn't broadly support it when it came into force in the 1980s and even fairly recent polling suggests that they believe it's done more harm than good. Their only concern now is undergoing wrenching change if it collapses, as occurred after it was implemented. But grudging support based on fear isn't much to boast about.

    3.) Experts have been jumping off Trump's ship at an alarming rate. The basic concern with Trump's style appears to be that he must be told what he wants to hear and quickly dumps those who don't feed his ego and/or don't agree with him. Perhaps this, above all else, will doom his presidency unless he changes course. Great leaders don't surround themselves with sycophants. 

  6. "I'm not too concern about this actually. He's exposing the game and that is a huge political risk for a typical politician. But trump isn't a typical politician. In fact he isn't a politician at all." 

    paxrom: But, if he fails, as reportedly some of his business projects have, many both inside the U.S. and outside of it will be able to say 'we told you so'.

  7. 3 hours ago, paxrom said:

    uh oh looks like the canucks are buckling like the chinese. I'm really curious to see end result out of all these trade disagreement. If everyone cave in then it'll be a huge victory for trump domestically.

    But most importantly it will define the new world order with better relationship between all nation and prosperity will continue to flourish. 

    The problem with your argument, at least where Canada is concerned, is that polling suggests a majority of Americans don't concur with Trump's trade attacks on Canada (see link below). The implications of Trump's behavior could be quite negative for many American workers. His absurd aluminum and steel tariffs only hurt American businesses, particularly where aluminum is concerned. American-made products are cheaper for domestic consumers and to compete in export markets because Canada has a distinct competitive advantage in aluminum production due to access to inexpensive hydroelectric power in the main producing provinces (Quebec and B.C.). This competitive advantage is passed on to American manufacturers in the form of lower production input costs, which is the way beneficial trade is supposed to work. Trump seems to believe that competitive advantage is only obtained by cheating. What does that say about him personally and what does it say about his understanding of economics?


  8. 6 hours ago, bush_cheney2004 said:


    But America's "traditional alliances" have also come at great cost and some negative consequences.   

    Trump wants to be the change agent, destroyer of the status quo.

    I remember the "Nixon Shock" of 1971, taking away convertibility of U.S. dollars to gold and undermining Bretton Woods (West Germany had already been playing games with their Deutsche Mark).    The policy change "shocked" international order, and today's floating currency exchange rates were the result, a mostly positive thing.

    President Trump is not the first POTUS to do such things, and he will not be the last.    Trump is just another U.S. president.

    Whether Trump's behavior will ultimately be determined to be irresponsible or beneficial will take time to assess. He may want to destroy the status quo, but does he have any idea what he wants to replace it with or what the new world order that might emerge could look like? I don't disagree entirely with his perspective. I think many underestimate the extent to which ordinary citizens in the U.S .and elsewhere in the West are fed up with the current globalist and identity-focused agendas. People built prosperous and largely peaceful societies to which many feel very attached. Now, they're told nothing is certain and that sacrifices made may have been in vain. But rather than tap into shared sentiment among the populations of countries that traditionally ally with the U.S., Trump seems more comfortable attacking friends and reaching out to despots and dictatorships. It's an odd message to send. Despite his personal failings, Nixon was in many aspects an intelligent and shrewd leader where policy was concerned. I'm not at all sure Trump is similarly gifted. Sometimes when you destroy things you just can't put them back together again.

  9. 1 hour ago, Argus said:

    And the Liberals responded by increasing immigration levels again, so Mister Selfie could puff out his chest and wave his curly hair and show everyone how progressive he is. Again.

    I suspect that's why the internal study wasn't released. Immigration is a political rather than an economic policy. Were it to be examined in rational economic terms the current program couldn't be sustained. As long as enough Canadians are kept in the dark about problems with the current program the government can probably maintain high levels of support. As reported in a recent CBC piece (link to article below), support for immigration drops when people are made aware of actual immigration numbers. Thus the government downplays this information. It would be interesting to see how any party willing to challenge the status quo on immigration policy would fare in terms of public support. I think the current federal parties, which seem to work in concert to preclude honest political debate on immigration policy, might be surprised.


  10. 9 minutes ago, Centerpiece said:

    Let's be clear - there is no immigration crisis in Canada. We can handle the planned immigration of people who genuinely WANT to come to Canada and duly follow the application process.

    I'm not sure I completely agree with this. I think we have to keep legal immigration in place but need to be much more careful about immigration intake levels and the kind of immigrants we are permitting to enter the country. A internal federal government study, which wasn't publicly released but was disclosed via an access to information request, concluded that at current levels Canada is not effectively socially and economically absorbing immigrants. (Link to article posted below) Also, independent analysis, including by the Fraser Institute, suggests that immigration has become a very costly program where social costs are calculated in comparison to taxation collected from the most recent generation of immigrants. This is estimated to be costing Canadian taxpayers in excess of $30 billion annually. It may not be a crisis, but it's clearly a problem.


  11. Just now, Argus said:

    Rae is a mushy headed far left progressive. Naturally he'd reference such a thing. But he is far from mainstream. The NDP might well embrace renaming anyone white as a settler, but they aren't mainstream either.

    I'd be fascinated to hear Trudeau's view on this. My guess is that he concurs with "settler" sentiment and ideology.

  12. 25 minutes ago, Jimwd said:

    Trump started the tariff game and Europe is responding.

    get it yet?

    Trump's engaging in a phony tariff war with the EU and Canada, although it's not clear to me that he fully understands the situation. Jobs will be lost in the U.S. as firms move to serve EU markets, in particular, with EU-produced products. Canada may not have this kind of market leverage but it appears most Americans don't see Canada as part of the bigger trade problem in any case. Sure, Canada shelters some sectors, including through supply management, but the U.S. also provides enormous subsidies to some sectors in its economy, including agriculture and aerospace. There are no virgins in the trade game, even where friends are considered. The elephant in the room, of course, is China, but I think Trump is approaching that country in an unproductive fashion. The more important issue is the WTO system, which grants China developing economy status and privileges. Trump should be working with other Western countries to reach an agreement with China. Instead, he's huffing and puffing and p***ing everybody off. He likes the image of being the playground bully, but this comes with consequences. Leaders in China and Russia are probably laughing about the impact of his antics on America's traditional alliances.

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  13. 1 hour ago, eyeball said:

    You were warned about this years and years ago. You haven't seen anything yet.

    Just wait until climate change refugees start piling up. But you probably laughed at and ignored warnings about that too didn't you?

    I think we need to look at the future implications of mass migration. The more a society struggles to cope with uncontrolled migration, the more benefits will have to be curtailed for the broader population. As the Nobel prize winning economist Milton Friedman noted: "It's just obvious you can't have free immigration and a welfare state." And others, including the British economist Sir Paul Collier, have noted that one of the significant impacts of open large-scale migration is to undermine social cohesion, whereby established taxpaying citizens tend to lose interest in paying for expensive programs that disproportionately benefit those in the population who haven't paid into these programs. So, accepting mass migration as either desirable or inevitable brings with it a whole host of other implications that many might be very hesitant to accept, including likely declining support for universal health care and pension programs. We may have to move to the American system, where those who are eligible to receive these benefits are mainly those who've paid into them for decades. Those progressives who think we can have open migration within a welfare state based on anything close to universal access are burying their heads in the sand.

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  14. 1 hour ago, Argus said:

    Where have you noticed that? The only people I see using it are the most brainless of progressive morons.

    Okay, except some the practitioners of this ideology are in fact quite respected, mainstream (dare I say) and even in some cases considered brainy. I've heard Bob Rae reference the "settler" ideology, which he appears to wholeheartedly accept, and in the 2015 Globe and Mail article he even described Canada in its current form as a "settler country.". It is increasingly entering the language of the elites. I started this topic this morning after reading a Toronto Star article where an individual was described as being of mixed "settler" and Indigenous background. Even where the subject in the article self-identified as such, why not just say they're of partially Indigenous ancestry? Maybe this person's ancestors were at least partially of Anglo-Saxon, English-speaking stock, and therefore apparently actual (i.e. undisputed) settlers. But who cares? Is ethno-racial identity now so important in this country that we must identify ourselves according to whether our ancestors were victimizers or victimized? Has our society really become this rigidly tribalized? 


  15. 10 minutes ago, Michael Hardner said:

    Many will answer 'I don't care !" thereby falling into the trap.

    Actually, I think the trap rests in accepting the terminology. It generally accompanies other historical assumptions and ideological baggage, including loaded language like "cultural genocide" as if the ideology is accepted fact. I don't consider myself a settler. I was born here. My ancestors, French, Irish and Portuguese, had little or nothing to do with the establishment of British colonial governance on the territory that is now Canada. If visible minority immigrants and their descendants seek exemption from the concept, including on grounds that they are/were victims of British colonialism, why can't I claim the benefit of such apparently redeeming history?

  16. 1 hour ago, Michael Hardner said:

    How many people within a group need to be offended by a term before it becomes discredited ?   I think "immigrants" is a bad example of objectionable terms as it is a real label for a certain type of person.  Maybe "Indian" is a better example.  As such, if descendants of original settlers start complaining, we have a timeline of 150 years and counting to rectify it.  Or maybe we can just create in-person and online groups to take us through these questions.


    In one sense, I agree with you. My mother, after all, was an immigrant who moved here from the U.S. (if that counts). My point is that we're told to avoid using overly broad labels. Canadian-born descendants of visible minority immigrants bristle at being asked where they're from. These days, the designation "immigrant" is often portrayed as negatively distinguishing members of mainly visible minority groups from white Canadians and we're told instead to use more neutral and presumably virtuous terms like "New Canadian." The term "settler," which appears to emerge from Indigenous identity politics and is rooted in a reductionist historical context with little modern applicability, generates an impression that mainstream/Caucasian/European/white Canadians are somehow not legitimately here or when used by non-Indigenous people are only apologetically so. I didn't pay much attention to the term (more SJW ideology, I figured) until I read a column by a journalist who wrote a plodding article about why visible minority immigrants and their offspring (like her and/or her ancestors, apparently) must be exempted from the settler designation. But why, then, aren't the descendants of 19th century Irish immigrants, who were victims of British colonialism and in today's terms would be considered refugees, also exempted? Race? If members of visible minority communities consider the term a slur with which they don't want their own identities conflated, isn't there a problem with the term itself? 

  17. 10 minutes ago, Centerpiece said:

    Let's see how welcoming Canadians are when the flood doesn't stop. Thanks to our big-mouth, virtue signalling PM, Pandora's box has been opened. We're only STARTING to get a feel for how frustrated many Americans are.

    Toronto's mayor, John Tory, has reportedly written a letter to the federal government advising that there's no more room at the inn. So far, the Trudeau-Trump inspired refugee influx has cost city ratepayers more than $60 million and yet the federal government has apparently offered the whole province of Ontario a one-time sum of $11 million to help deal with a problem largely created by Ottawa. What will happen during the coming winter when growing non-refugee homeless population seeks indoor space? Will there be dozens, or even hundreds, freezing to death on city streets? Tory has said he won't cut other city programs to fund refugee housing. What, then, is going to happen? Does Trudeau understand the scope and breadth of the problem? Personally, I have little confidence that he and/or his government can fix this.

  18. I've noticed an increasing tendency in mainstream media to adopt the term "settler" in reference both to multi-generational (i.e. Caucasian or white) Canadians as well as to mainstream Canadian society (i.e. "settler society" or "settler culture"). Politicians and ex-politicians, too, have fallen into this odious negative identity trap. I consider the overly broad use of this term to be offensive and in some circumstances derogatory. If it's objectionable to refer to members of visible minorities as "immigrants," particularly when they're second generation or multi-generational, why on earth is it acceptable to characterize white Canadians, whose ancestors in some cases may have arrived in the country over the past few generations, as settlers? Isn't this a form of racial categorization and oversimplification? In many cases, it seems to me to amount to reductionist hypocrisy.

  19. On 6/24/2018 at 11:46 AM, Anthony said:

    If this is true, we are just wasting time making others feel good by thinking they have "contributed" to society, yet they do not want to hear about discussion of their own idea. One can live in a bubble, but do not expect to live in a bubble on a political discussion forum.  This idea of "agree with me or don't post your comment" is not going to progress anyone.

    I'm not sure what you mean by referencing this comment to a decontextualized sentence fragment ("why would you join a site like this?)? The full sentence from which it's extracted reads as follows: " If you don't want to listen to the Western perspective, why would you join a site like this?" The member had expressed in a series of comments his/her objection to the Western view of free speech without, in my opinion, providing a philosophically consistent context within which another system might be superior and then resorted to outright insult ("You are an idiot.") rather than engage in further debate. Why would somebody join a site like this merely to insult other members with whom they disagree rather than to engage in fair debate? I think it a fair question.   

  20. 10 hours ago, Argus said:

    Uhm, no. It was a defamation suit. 

    A lot of people don't appear to understand the distinction between civil and criminal law. Even some media outlets have reported the issue as involving "hate speech," a concept that strictly speaking is a criminal law matter. Technically, the court rejected a novel free speech defense in this suit and in so doing broke no new ground. As I indicated in a previous post, the status quo prevailed.

  21. I believe many have reached an incorrect conclusion about this matter. Some are holding the ruling as a victory in the ongoing effort to expand restrictions on hate speech, although it doesn't seem to do anything of the sort. Rather, the defendants in this suit reportedly argued a free speech defense based on Ontario's fairly recent anti-SLAPP legisation. The court rejected this defense as being inapplicable to the circumstances. Had the defense strategy succeeded, a precedent would indeed have been set. It appears, then, that as the court rejected a novel free speech defense relating to a civil court defamation matter no new ground has been broken. The status quo remains intact. 

  22. 3 hours ago, Altai said:

    Please stop rejecting science when it does not fit with your interests. .

    Too funny! The Enlightenment, one of the foundational bases of Western culture, promoted science and rationalism in response to their opposites, superstition, custom, hierarchy and religion. The movement was premised on the notion that we can and should abandon all preconceptions and question everything, however uncomfortable that process might be for some. You should read Voltaire, and particularly his views on religion. Then you'd begin to understand the Western mindset. I worked with a woman a couple decades ago who fled revolutionary Iran for Canada. She said he had never known what actual freedom was until she moved to the West.

  23. 53 minutes ago, Altai said:


    Logic determines the negative speech.

    Too funny! Your previous posts indicate that you're not interested in logic. Religion, for instance is the opposite of logic. In my opinion, negative speech is telling others what they can't say so you can maintain power and control. The kind of system you seem to prefer would amount to a dystopia in the minds of many in the West. Were you to watch the award winning TV series, The Handmaid's Tale, maybe you'd understand the distinctions being made here.

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