Archive for December, 2011

Polar Bears’ Plight and Occupy Wall Street Confront the Corporate State

“We know that the Canadian Government’s domestic and international climate policy has been bought by the fossil fuel regime. Our leaders have refused to show any kind of leadership at the international level and have chosen, instead, to become the lobby arm of the oil industry, putting short-term economic interests ahead of the rights and lives of millions today and all subsequent generations” Cameron Fenton, Director of Canadian Youth Climate Coalition, writing from Durban, South Africa’s U.N. Climate Summit

 

The 1999 movie, “The Matrix”, starts off with it coming to light that humans have trashed the planet and the computers, who now run Earth, believe the planet is better off with the subjugation of humans. The computers run the planet like our corporations do now: heartlessly and with greed. The first “Matrix” film ends with the words ‘system failure’. Humans want to take back the planet; they want to Occupy Earth again. In 2011, the world’s Occupy movement ignited in getting our Earth back.

Occupy Wall Street is only the beginning, of hopefully, a non-violent response to inertia, gross inequality, (Take a look at those shacks and tents up in Attawapiskat near a diamond mine.) and ecological catastrophe that overweening corporate/bank power has strewn throughout the world. As the “Le Monde diplomatique” puts it in its November article, the Occupy Wall Street represents the “coalition of the disenchanted”. By mid-October the movement ‘occupied’ 950 cities around the world and it’s now getting ready for the spring. It is quite amazing to hear adults speak of the occupy movement as just a ragtag group of homeless, unemployed or just crazy disgruntled youth, It’s that and so much more. In fact, this is the first time in a very long time that the under 30 crowd is showing their potential to be what that age group is historically known to be: creative, irreverent and full of Joie de Vivre. Photos from around the world and visits to Occupy Montreal’s Victoria Square made me believe that there are some very passionate and well read youth-an outdoor library at each encampment- who make up a large proportion of Occupy. Just taking a look at upcoming events planned in Vancouver will make you realize that the autumn occupations were just a prelude to where youth and people of all ages are going. For example, throughout the world there are rallies to support Global Day of Action on Climate Change on December 3rd. Some websites to view: www.occupytogether.orgwww.350.org

As usual, Canada has been branded a climate miscreant at the U.N. climate summit in Durban, South Africa, and has been censured by Brazil and China, most developing countries and even Arch-Bishop Desmond Tutu for its stubborn refusal to acknowledge the perils of climate destabilization and its steadfast lobbying for inaction. Perhaps the Government of Canada’s extreme corporate bias can be summed up in the way they have refused to accept the fact that polar bears are in dire need of protection. After repeatedly missing deadlines to commit to scientifically based actions that will alleviate the bears’ slide towards extinction, it was forced by default to accept “Species for special concern” status for polar bears. This is the lowest designation under Canada’s Species at Risk Act and gives the bear no substantive protection to stop them from losing habitat or being killed. Even the U.S., under its Endangered Species Act, calls the bear ‘threatened’. Why would Canada’s corporate regime refuse what is clear to all scientists? Accepting the plight of polar bears means the government would have to reign in its corporate oil bosses and do something to stop climate change in the arctic. Rising temperatures are a direct consequence of fossil fuel emissions. They won’t do this and so the demise of the bear may be guaranteed. The Center for Biological Diversity is taking Canada to court under the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation. See www.biologicaldiversity.org

What does the International Energy Agency, Canada’s National Round Table for the Environment and the Economy, World Metrological Organization, David Suzuki Foundation, Nobel Laureates, Council of Canadians, Climate Action Network, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and 97% of all scientists have in common? They all say we’re losing the little time we have left to stop catastrophic climate destabilization. As seen in Durban this last week, youth has had enough.