Lawmakers in Canada appear to be paving the way for “deep integration” with the U.S. and Mexico with a proposed measure that advances the controversial Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America promoted by the Bush administration, notes WND columnist Jerome Corsi.
The conservative minority government of Prime Minister Stephen Harper is pressing for “The Trade, Investment and Labour Mobility Agreement”, which would enable a Canadian company to challenge laws in provinces that block the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Murray Dobbin, a Vancouver author and journalist critical of SPP, argued in an article titled, “The Plan to Disappear Canada – ‘Deep Integration’ comes out of the shadows,” the secretive trilateral bureaucratic working groups organized under the auspices of SPP are “harmonizing” virtually every important area of public policy with the U.S., including “defense, foreign policy, energy (they get security, we get greenhouse gases), culture, social policy, tax policy, drug testing and safety and much more.”
The proposed legislation would allow companies that believe provincial laws and regulations harm their NAFTA rights to demand up to $5 million in compensatory damages for each violation.
When fully implemented, Dobbin argues, “TILMA would allow challenges to the location and size of commercial signs, environmental set-backs for developers, zoning, building height restrictions, pesticide bans, and green space requirements in urban areas. It also would allow challenges to restrictions on private health clinics, halt stricter rules for nursing homes and almost certainly overturn the current ban on junk food in British Columbia schools.”
The controversy over SPP broke into the mainstream in Canada last month when Tory Member of Parliament Leon Benoit walked out of a House of Commons International Trade Committee hearing in protest to a leftist professor who wanted to air his objections to “deep integration” with the U.S.
The professor, Gordon Laxer of the University of Alberta, was about to explain to the committee his theory that SPP involves a U.S. grab of Canada’s energy resources when Benoit adjourned the meeting and bolted out of the room, preventing the Canadian mainstream press from hearing and reporting the professor’s arguments.
Laxer, nevertheless, published his testimony in the nationally read Globe and Mail newspaper.
Laxar has objected to the closed-door meeting roundtables of Canadian business and corporate elite held in Calgary by the Washington-based think tank the Center for Strategic and International Studies, or CSIS, as part of its “North American Future 2025 Project.”
WND previously reported two activist groups, the Council of Canadians and the Coalition for Water Aid, are protesting that the CSIS research project involves a massive grab by the U.S. of Canadian fresh water, estimated to be one-fifth of the world’s supply.
WND also has reported the CSIS, chaired by former Sen. Sam Nunn and guided by trustees including Richard Armitage, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Harold Brown, William Cohen and Henry Kissinger, is planning to present its “North American Future 2025” final report to the governments of Mexico, Canada and the U.S. by Sept. 30. The report is expected to recommend the benefits of integrating the U.S., Mexico and Canada into one political economic and security bloc.
Canadian activists are preparing to protest the third summit meeting of the SPP, scheduled for Aug. 20 and 21 in Montebello, Quebec.