Harper Government's Refusal to Protect Fish Habitats Another Gift to His Oil Company Supporters

Day after day in every possible way Harper's Government is destroying Canada's future quality of life in exchange for the short term profits his oil patch supporters covet. In this case it's the neo-cons attack on the word 'habitat'. Harpo wants to jettison the protection of fish habitat in the current Fisheries Act. The Globe and Mail, not usually known for its lefty perspective, points out in an editorial today titled 'Fish habitat: Why rock the boat?', The current Fisheries Act is beautiful in its simplicity: Fish need habitat to survive, and harming their habitat will inevitably cause harm to the fish. It ain’t broke, so don’t fix it.

This obvious attempt to subvert current and future environmental challenges to destructive 'development' is under fire now from all sides including real conservatives, the kind that believe conservative means to conserve. John Fraser, fisheries minister from 1984 to 1985 in Brian Mulroney's government, said in an interview Tuesday, "To take habitat out of the Fisheries Act is a very serious error because you can't save fish if you don't save habitat, and I say this as a lifelong conservative,"  "People who want to eliminate the appropriate safeguards that should be made in the public interest, these people aren't conservatives at all. They're ideological right-wingers with very, very limited understanding, intelligence or wisdom."

Of course, environmentalists and a large network of environmental scientists are furious about the idea and say Ottawa is ready to abdicate its national and international obligations to protect waterways. They accuse Ottawa of giving up stewardship of the environment to promote energy and mining projects at all costs.

Last week former Fisheries executive Otto Langer released a whistle blower's email and Langer said the move is likely intended to help Enbridge, since the proposed pipeline that is enthusiastically defended by the Harper government would cross hundreds of rivers and streams en route to Kitimat. Since then criticism has poured into the press, especially on the independent parts of the internet where corporate advertising dollars hold very sway, but also more and more in the mainstream press.

None of this though has seemed to have forced the neo-cons and corporate ass kissers in Harpo's government to change course. These people must be stopped and their destruction reversed before it's to late. The only real solution on the horizon is some sort of co-operation between the NDP, the Liberals and the Greens in the next election. The only candidate in this weekend's NDP leadership race advocating this course is Nathan Cullen. Let's hope the rank and file New Democrats agree because all of the old guard and insiders there seem entrenched in the same old lines which, unless Cullen is elected over their heads, will only keep Harpo and his cronies in power and assist them in destroying Canada's future.