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The Gomery Inquiry: Tip of the Corruption Iceberg PDF Print E-mail
Justice News
Sunday, 24 April 2005 06:08
The Gomery Inquiry: Tip of the Corruption IcebergPEJ News Joan Russow Phd: For years, the attribution of "corruption" in politics was generally reserved by the governments of the North to describe with derision the governments of the South. The North was wrongly deemed to be above corruption. With the Gomery Inquiry into the Sponsorship Scandal, the term "corruption" is receiving the recognition it deserves. But what constitutes "corruption" . For years, primarily with the Liberal Party, Conservative party, and the Reform Party through all its transformations have been willing to accept donations from the Corporate establishment. It was never a co-incidence that the formulation of party policies, platforms and positions, as well as the distribution of government grants and contributions were closely aligned with the corporate donors. The Gomery Inquiry: Tip of the Corruption Iceberg
Joan Russow Phd

For years, the attribution of "corruption" in politics was generally reserved by the governments of the North to describe with derision the governments of the South. The North was wrongly deemed to be above corruption. With the Gomery Inquiry into the Sponsorship Scandal, the term "corruption" is receiving the recognition it disserves. But what constitutes "corruption" . For years, primarily with the Liberal Party, Conservative party, and the Reform Party through all its transformations have been willing to accept donations from the Corporate establishment. It was never a co-incidence that the formulation of party policies, platforms and positions, as well as the distribution of government grants and contributions were closely aligned with the corporate donors.

When a content analysis is carried out of corporate donations that have been disclosed through Election Canada , there is evidence that the parties (Liberals, Reform, Canadian Alliance, Progressive Conservatives and "not so progressive? Conservative) are supported individually or collectively by the following categories of corporations: banks and other financial institutions, tobacco, coal, oil, gas, automobile, forest, chemical, mining, uranium, nuclear, arms producers, agribusiness, pharmaceutical, and the gun lobby.

In parliament, the correlation between donations to the Liberals and grants and contributions given to corporations through the Human Resources Department, and more recently through Public Works has been given media profile.

What has not been sufficiently profiled in the media is the correlation, between corporate donations to political parties and the formulating of the policy of these political parties. For example, have these parties whether in government or opposition, federally or provincially been strong advocates of the following:

* addressing climate change through phasing out fossil fuel dependency, through moving away from car dependency, through conserving carbon sinks, and through promoting safe environmentally sound energy alternatives; and preventing loss an reduction of Biodiversity

[Note: that it was the Conservative party under Mulroney that bound Canada and the provinces in 1992 in signing and ratifying the Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Convention on Biological Diversity , and then failed to implement the necessary legislation to ensure compliance]

* banning socially inequitable and ecologically unsound practices while instituting a fair and just transition program for affected workers and communities,

* ensuring a publicly funded, not for profit, universally accessibly health care system with emphasis on prevention of environmentally induced illnesses, and poverty related health problems;

* recognizing that disarmament and reduction of the military budget are necessary conditions of security and development; reducing the military budget and military contracts by at least 60% and transferring the peace dividend

[During both Conservative and Liberal governments, the government defence budget has been at least 10% of funds available for programs]

* banning and phasing out uranium mining, the circulating and berthing of nuclear powered and nuclear arms capable vessels and prohibiting support for the civil nuclear energy industry and the nuclear arms industry;

* calling for disbanding of NATO, for abrogating of NAFTA, for discontinuing negotiations of the FTAA, and for dismantling of the WTO;

* banning genetically engineered foods and crops, converting agribusiness to chemically-free organic agriculture, and instituting a fair and just transition program for farmers and communities affected by the conversion;

* enforcing regulations and banning practices that have contributed land, air, and water pollution

* guaranteeing human rights, including civil and political rights, women's rights, indigenous rights, rights of migrant workers,

* ensuring social justice, and economic, social and cultural rights, including labour rights, the human right to safe drinking water, the human right to housing, and the human right to unadulterated food.

* enacting the necessary legislation to fully ensure compliance with obligations incurred through conventions, treaties, and covenants; with commitments made through conference action plans, and expectations created through United Nations General Assembly declarations and resolutions.

* refusing to spend billions on supporting ill-conceived military interventions: the Conservatives in 1991 in Iraq, the Liberals, in 1998, in Iraq, in 1999 (Yugoslavia); in 2001 (Afghanistan),

[Obviously if the Conservatives had been in power, 2003 (Iraq) ]
Last Updated on Sunday, 24 April 2005 06:08
 

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