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A Vision for the New Generation


Lyle Bradley

Copyright 1997, Lyle Bradley

Reprinted in HTML Format by Sean Sunley with permission from the Author

AUTHOR'S NOTE: If you like what you read, if the ideas on the following pages have meaning for you, you have my full permission to share this writing with others: hand this book around if you wish, photocopy it for friends if you want. All ideas are meant to be shared.

I only have three requirements. First, if you copy it, copy all of it, in its entirety (including the notes at the end which contain the documentation and proof for what I have written and a wealth of additional information).
My second requirement is that you do not use, copy, publish or distribute what I have written, in whole or in part, for profit.
And thirdly, I would ask that if you quote from this writing in any publication, magazine, book, on the internet or in any other place, please give written credit to your source.

One final note: The english language does not have any gender-neutral, inclusive singular pronoun. Historically, if the gender of a person is not known, the male pronoun would have been used. (example: Everyone should think about what he is doing). This is unacceptable to me since half of the population is female and should not be automatically excluded because of the grammar of our language.

Therefore, throughout this writing I have chosen to alter the grammar rules by using a plural, inclusive pronoun whenever I have used a singular, inclusive subject. (example: Everyone should think about what they are doing.) If this offends some grammar "purists", that is too bad. I would rather break a rule and offend a few than to exclude half of the population.

Enjoy and be well.


01. Power of Thought (1-4)
02. New Generation (5-8)
03. Free Will (9-12)
04. Television Programming (13-17)
05. King of Thailand/Respect over Obedience (19-20)
06. Obedience/Anarchy/Silly laws (21-24)
07. Police Corruption/Citizen oversight in democracy (25-30)
08. Government/Orders in Council/Constitutional Rights (31-36)
09. Government/CSIS/Personal information files/Emergency Measures Act (37-43)
10. Burma (45-48)
11. Corporations (49-52)
12. Money/New World Order/Corporate abuse of human rights (53-57)
13. My Birthright/Right to Life (59-59)
14. Where Can I Sleep (61-62)
15. Water/North American Free Trade Agreement (63-66)
16. Food/3rd World hunger/Debt/Food for export (67-71)
17. Food/Homelessness/Hunger in Canada (73-75)
18. Nuclear Power/Canada's Contribution/Candu/Uranium (77-86)
19. Listening to One Another/Gathering places (87-89)
20. Declaration of Being (91-91)
21. Greed Over Life?/Destruction-life for money/Apocalypse (93-96)
22. Life Over Greed/Why help destroy us?/To live or die? (97-98)
23. Evolution of Consciousness/Our power/Complete shift (99-101)
24. Where Do We Begin?/Canada/food (103-106)
25. Environment (107-110)
26. Garbage/Industrial Waste/Recycling/Disposal products/Corporate Responsibility (111-118)
27. Democracy/MPs do not represent us/Direct Democracy/Self-Determination/New constitution (119-124)
28. Legal System/Police/Court Undertakings/Innocent until proven guilty (125-127)
29. Non-violent Conflict Resolution/Oregon Peace Institute/Martial Arts Code of Conduct (129-131)
30. United States Military/Arms sales/United Nations (133-136)
31. Canada, A Nation of Peace/Lead the world/World Court/Individuals make the difference (137-140)
32. Fire Circles/Gathering Places/Youth Co-operatives (141-143)
33. Skateboarding/Victimless Crimes/Drugs (145-149)
34. Education/Natural Curiosity/Mentors/Right to free education/Suppression of knowledge (151-155)
35. Hemp (157-162)
36. Rethinking Economics/Social equality/Taxes/Resources/Total automation/Crimes against humanity (163-168)
37. Conclusion: Where we go from here (169-172)
Notes (173-251)
Appendix 1 Our government's secrets and their power to suppress information (253-263)
Appendix 2 The Privatization of violence (265-272)
Appendix 3 Industry Stewardship and the Polluter Pays Principle (273-278)
Appendix 4 We dissent (279-279)
Index (281-292)

To the rising generation:

For the good of all,
in the name of free-will.

Chapter 1

Within my being I am aware that I exist.

I am.

My own awareness of my own consciousness is the only thing that does not need to be proven to me or learned through an outside experience.

I know that I am.

My awareness of my own consciousness is, at the same time, the only thing which cannot be proven to another, for it cannot be experienced by anyone else.

I believe, and can only believe, that others also have an awareness of their own consciousness but, for me, it is unprovable and unknowable. For I do not experience their consciousness, either within my own thought-space or within my physical dimension.

I am. This is my truth.

I once watched a young child, old enough to be aware of his existence and surroundings, yet young enough that he was unable to understand words and language. I watched him. I wondered what form awareness takes before language shapes our thoughts. I noticed that this young child had no concept of time, past or future, but lived completely in the present moment. I noticed him watching all that happened around him, taking it in. He knew only pure awareness of his present condition. I noticed that he would respond emotionally to his condition, moment by moment. If he was happy, he would smile; if he was unhappy, he would cry. There were no thoughts of an hour hence or an hour past, only now, only a response to what he was experiencing and feeling.

As we grow, words take form within our thoughts. Pure awareness and pure emotion give way to concepts and ideas. The words shape the way we interpret what we experience, and we project our thoughts into the past and the future.

Our own conscious awareness of our own existence puts all else that we experience outside of ourselves. We spend our lives seeking to bridge the gap between that which is within and all else that we experience in our physical dimension. It seems to me that our mutual commonality is this, that, although we share the same physical space, each of us is alone with our own awareness of self. Each of us is alone with our thoughts.

I am a wanderer, an honest seeker of truth. I have been walking around watching, listening, and thinking. I have seen what I have seen and heard what I have heard. I have experienced in each present moment that which was before me and have felt, like the young child, the emotions which those experiences created within me. At each moment, I have tried to respond as honestly as possible to the emotions which I have felt, and out of my own experiences, my thoughts have had their birth, born within me, from what I have seen and have come to know.

Alone with my thoughts, I am but one man walking upon this planet on a solo journey of discovery, surrounded by eight billion other conscious, thinking human beings who are also on a solo journey of discovery.

I wonder what eight billion people think about?

One thing is clear to me: A thought changes the course of a beings consciousness and, as simply as one thought alters our consciousness, the power of one thought can alter the course of humanity.

The history of civilization is the history of thoughts enacted. That which we call reality, the world we see and live in today, is nothing more than the effect of the manifestation of past thoughts lived out in the lives of countless millions. That which we call reality is nothing more than thoughts which individuals chose to focus on, and felt were important enough to act upon, through countless generations past. That which we call reality is the progression of past choices made and their effect rippling forward through time. Indeed, that which we call reality could very well have been a very different reality, if different thoughts had been thought and different choices made.

Many times throughout the generations past, history has been changed because of the actions of one person. Moments of history have pivoted on the lives lived by individual beings. One person can change the course of the entire species, for better or for worse, through their actions -- and their actions are a reflection of their thoughts.

Everything we know as human beings, everything we have learned, everything we have created, has come about because somewhere, sometime, someone had either a need or a question. As those needs and questions were pondered, we learned, solved our problems and satisfied our curiosity, then shared our insights with others.

We have learned all that we have, we have created all that we have, through the power of thought. Everything begins as a thought.

Yet this I know, not every thought is given form. I have many thoughts which stay mine, and mine alone. For to give a thought form, it must be transformed into the physical dimension through word or deed.

Out of the myriad of thoughts within my being, only those which I focus on and choose, through a manifestation of my free-will, are given birth into this world through my conscious action. The rest remain thoughts within, silent to whole rest of humanity.

For nothing that happens can happen until someone thinks a thought and expends focused energy of action to undertake and manifest it.

So, what are we thinking about?

As in times before, where we evolve to from here depends upon our needs and upon the questions we choose to focus on. Yet the direction of our thinking and the focus of our lives might not be in keeping with our present needs or state of being. It seems to me that, in our rush to forge ahead through life, we are not pausing long enough to consider whether the direction we are going is the direction we want to be going, or even should be going.

What are the underlying assumptions upon which we are making our choices and setting our direction? Where do we stand at this moment in our evolutionary journey, and where do we go from here?

Our greatest power, as individuals and as a species, is our power to learn and to change our minds. The way we are going is not the only way. As simply and as quickly as we change our minds, we can change the entire direction of humanity.

That which we do and the way we do it, often long outlives the reasons why we do it that way or the thinking which brought it about.

We are born into a world where the decisions of the past have been built layer by layer, one on top of the other, until the present state of being -- our reality -- came into being. The process presupposes that each past decision was the best decision that could be made, and that the sum total of those decisions, our current state of affairs, is precisely what we should be doing and need to be doing, the best course.

Perhaps that is not true. Perhaps not all past decisions were the best decisions that could have been made; perhaps the effects that those decisions created, and the subsequent decisions built upon them, have resulted in a way of living that is not the best way that we could live; perhaps our current state of being is not all that it could be, should be, or needs to be.

We have accepted the social programming given to us from the past and live it as if it is the only program available for us to live. We accept it as the best way for our time, without considering the problems it is creating, or whether a different way might be more desirable.

As we take a look at our historically-created "reality", our way of being and thinking, as we take a look at its effects, we must decide if it is the way we want to be living. We do not need to accept the direction or focus given to us out of our past. We have the power to change. Reality is just one big social-historic program running in the bio-computers of our minds, and if the programming is flawed, let us change the program, write a new one.

Two thousand six hundred years ago, the man Gautama, known historically as the Buddha, taught:

It is time for us to take a good, hard look at where we are at -- here and now -- at this moment in history, and look at where we are heading.

Historically, attempts to control our societies, or to control the direction of our evolution, have included attempts to control the nature and direction of thought itself.

Control of information, what we are told, what we are not told, what we believe matters, what we focus on, or what we choose to ignore, shapes our thinking, shapes what we choose to think about, and how we live our lives.

The past has brought us to this present moment but where we go from here is up to us. As individuals and as a species, we do not yet know what we cannot do. We do not yet know the limits of our possibilities through our conscious manifestation of thought. We do not yet know where we could yet go, if we but abandon our disbelief of the possibilities.

For where there is a conscious free-will, the possibilities are as boundless as thought itself.

Chapter 2

One day, after spending months walking around watching, talking to my fellow human beings, and listening, I thought about what we have done as human beings, the way we treat each other, what we have created, and the state of the world, and I sat down under a tree and cried.

Knowing that everything that we do and everything that we create is the effect of our conscious choosing, I look around at what we have chosen to create, and I wonder why.

Look at what we have created out of the power of our consciousness.
Look at what we have chosen of our free-will to do and become. If we consciously think about it, is this the best we can do? Is this reality that we have created really the reality that we want to be living in?

Margaret Mead once said: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed human beings can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

What would happen if there was one generation of enlightened beings all walking upon the earth at the same time? What would one generation of focused, clear-seeing, clear-thinking human beings choose to create with their lives? One generation, by the lives they live, can change the entire direction of humanity, forever forward in time.

I believe we stand at that moment. If human beings are going to change direction, if human beings are going to create a new world, then we are the ones who will have to do it. I believe we are ones who have been foreseen and foretold by all the mystics, monks, prophets, holy ones, magicians, and wizards through all ages past.

We have a task to do.

This generation has the power to change the entire direction and focus of our species, if we will to do it.

We cannot afford to wait. By our own creation, life stands closer to peril now than at any time in our species history. No gods, angels or aliens are going to come out of the sky to save us from ourselves. We will have to do it on our own.

This is our time. As we look around us and make our choices, we will live our lives according to what we feel is best. By our own power to choose, our lives will create our greatest evolutionary shift, or our greatest regret. We collectively will make the choice, our generation.

Yet, what do I see?

As I watch the media, every time I see the word "youth," I see it used in a negative way: youth crime, youth violence, youth gangs. As we sit in our homes here in Canada watching news from the United States on our televisions, many think that the streets of Canada are as dangerous as the streets of Detroit or Los Angeles, that our youth are just as violent.

Year after year, statistics show that crime in Canada is falling, but fear of crime is rising.1  The streets of Canada are not as dangerous as the streets of the United States. Yet we have a whole generation of adults who are afraid of the rising generation, afraid of those who will create our future, afraid because of what they see on television.

We need to stop seeing "youth" as a problem to be fixed.

The world we are living belongs to everyone, young and old. As the first generation to grow up with both television and computers, the rising generation have an immense amount of knowledge, and they deserve to have a say as to which direction we as a society are heading. Yet, who is listening to our youth? Who is listening to the voices of our rising generation?

The rising generation, our youth, are not being heard. They are not being given a voice in our midst. Old-school thinking says, "A child should be seen and not heard." How many times are kids told, "Be quiet. You are just a kid, what do you know?" Our youth are old enough to drive two-ton killing machines down our city streets, old enough to have sex and bring children into the world, and old enough to pay taxes, but they are considered too young to vote and choose who will lead our country. Politicians, only listening to those who can re-elect them, ignore the voice of our youth. Our corporate leaders, only listening to those who possess economic power, also ignore the voice of our youth.

At the same time, the members of the rising generation are being told to continue the focus of previous generations, to follow the same course as their parents. They are being told that the direction of the past is the best way for them to live their lives, beyond question or improvement, that they have no choice, and that there is no other way or better way.

Many people, holding a belief of what life is meant to be lived like, expect our youth to think in the same way. Often adults through their actions, if not their words, imply that members of the rising generation are not beings unto themselves, that they have no power as individuals to think their own thoughts, form their own views, or make their own decisions. They are being told what to learn and what to think, how to act, and what type of person they are supposed to become.

Yet, in many ways, the rising generation see the task at hand more clearly than their parents do. The members of the rising generation are looking around, and they see the world that they are about to inherit. Many do not like what they see; some of them see a pretty big mess. They see their leaders acting dishonourably; they see actions of greed destroying our environment and life itself. They see people carrying on, "business as usual" while doing nothing to change our course; they see the older generation putting the pursuit of money above all else, while calling the actions of the youth "bad," and then telling them that the way to live their lives is to do the same.

The struggle of the older generation against the young is an act of coercion, forcing conformity of their thoughts to an ideology of obedience and greed, forcing conformity to a pathway of action which no longer meets the needs of our time, and which is no longer in the best interests of our species. The war against the rising generation suppresses dissenting thought at a time when thoughts of dissent are most badly needed to turn the course upon which we, as a species, are travelling.

The rising generation is a strong generation. The lives they are living is setting the direction into our future, and their quest is taking form within them. They are doing what they are doing for good reason, because of what they see and know. Do not underestimate them. Their thoughts are their own.

In the past, each generation would take over gradually from the one before it, learning and following the direction set by the previous generation. As each generation pondered and made changes, a slowly-evolving, gradual evolution of the species took place, without much difference in the course of one generation.

Now, the evolution of the species is happening at a quickening rate, and even small course corrections can make a huge difference, taking us in widely varying directions in just a short time.

Rather than living the programming given to us out of the past and waiting to the end of our time to see what we have created with our lives, what would happen if we, instead, considered the question, "where do we go from here?", before we make the journey?

What would happen if we set our focus on what really matters to us, then lived our lives according to a new program of our own choosing, in the direction we most wish, or most need to go.

What would happen if we explored, "Where do we go from here?" as a question for working out our destiny, instead of following the lead of a generation which outlaws skateboards and hackeysacks, and expects the rules to be followed?

I am reminded of a man who when he was four years old, was given some creamed corn to eat. He spit it out saying, "I hate corn." When he was five and six and eight and twelve, whenever someone offered him some corn, he would refuse saying, "No, thank you. I don't like corn." Twenty-one years passed without the man eating corn. One day, he was sitting with someone he did not want to offend. They offered him some corn. He accepted it politely, although reluctantly, and ate it...and liked it.

For twenty-one years he had been living a decision made by a four year old and accepting it as a core principle of his being. He knew he did not like corn because, "that is the way I am," yet he never considered re-evaluating the decision. He never considered that, over time, he had changed. He never considered that what is undesirable to a four year old might have meaning in his life now. Instead, he lived his life on auto-pilot, making his decisions automatically, based upon his past view of the world and his own past programming.

From time to time, we should examine who we are, what matters to us and what we believe. From time to time, it behooves us to set down our old baggage, our old values, old beliefs, our old way of seeing or being, that no longer serves us well because we have learned, changed and evolved. From time to time, we need to clean out the closet of our soul to make room for our new thoughts, our new lessons learned and our newly-created selves.

We do change with time, individually and as a species.

We possess the power to manifest the life of our choosing, whether it is a life we have been taught, programmed, shown, told, or ordered to live, or a life we choose of our own free-will.

Chapter 3

If you want to change the world, first change your heart,
then change your family, your community, your country,
and then the world.

- Confucius

Every human being feels a desire to be free.

The right to be free is a universal truth that each person knows in the core of their being. Throughout our history, human beings have struggled, repeatedly, to shed the compelling will of their oppressors upon them.

Free-will is the unfettered power of choice, whereby our thoughts and our intentions, as created from within our own consciousness, are manifest through our actions, without external compulsion, coercion or force, or the threat thereof.2

Free-will is an involatile, universal right. It is the right of all human beings, an absolute. It cannot exist for some but not for others.

We each possess self-autonomy, the power of one, creating our life as we choose to live it. Our lives are our own creation. We owe allegiance to no other human being; we are free to make any decision that affects us.

Guard zealously your free-will.

Are you consciously aware that whatever you do with your own mind, whatever you conceive, ponder or think about, is a choice you are free to make. Are you consciously aware that whatever you do is a decision of your free-will, that each moment you live your life you are setting your own course, whether or not others understand, accept it or agree?

Once we realize that we are free beings, that every choice is ours to make, we, of necessity, at that moment, accept responsibility for our own lives. At that moment, we accept responsibility for our thoughts, our actions, and the effects of our being.

We each have within us a consciousness that only we know or can ever know. We feel the desire of that consciousness to be free, to set its own course, and to direct its own evolution. Regardless of which path we choose, it is the choosing, and knowing we have a choice, that matters; choosing as wisely as we can, according to what we see, know and understand.

Each person's life is a complete, unique, conscious universe, separate and distinct in its experiences, knowledge, and thoughts. No one knows what you know; no one has seen what you have seen; no one thinks the thoughts you think. How can anyone else know the best course of action for your life but you?

Do what is meaningful to you. Do what needs to be done. You have one life to live, live it well. Let your life be a manifestation of your own vision of your own greatest good, freely lived, without restriction.

Only the being who writes his own law upon his heart is truly free.

For every effect, there is a cause; for every action, there is a thought. Our thoughts are given form by the conscious choice of our free-will. What we focus on is what we choose, and our focus springs from the integrity of our core being. That which we think, that which we do, and the effects that we create are all a reflection of our being.

Knowing that, how could we fail to accept responsibility for the effects of our being, whether or not we saw the effects or knew what they were at the time we made our choices?

When I meet another, I do not care what they look like, the colour or length of their hair, what they own, or what they wear, all I want to know is what is in their heart and head, the nature of their being, and the intent of their life. We are all just human beings doing the best we can, striving to make sense out of this experience we call life.

Equality is not about "sameness", its about celebrating diversity, honouring our differences, and respecting each other's free-will. Each person sees their world from a different point of view, and for them, their point of view makes sense because of what they have seen, where they have been, and what they know.

Too often we feel that others must act a certain way because we believe that there is a certain way that everything must be. Although your choices and your way of being may be better for you, do not presume that it is a better way for all, or even a better way for another. Free-will isn't, "my way is the only way or the best way," but rather, free-will is, "my way is my choice for me."

Why do so many of us believe that our way of seeing is so right and so much better than another's that they should live according to how we see and think? Life is not a test to see if we measure up to the standards that another places upon us, to see who is most obedient or who can make another bend to their will. When another's thought is imposed upon us for us to enact and to live, we become enslaved. Insofar as any person, government, or corporation impedes an individual's free-will, it is nothing more than the imposition of another person's thought upon them.

We will never go to our greatest good by compulsion, only by free choice. No one can compel another to be, think, or act in any way, other than the way they choose. For no being can judge or rule another, only each can judge and rule themselves. The course of action for one is not the course of action for another.

My free-will does not matter more than yours, but it does not matter less. Insofar as the manifestation of your free-will impedes none other, there is room for it. Restrict not the freewill of any being, in any way, for any reason, at any time.

By respecting the free-will of another, no harm is ever done.

Mahandas Gandhi said, "Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to err." We each have within us the capacity for great good and great evil. I believe it is a rare individual who, over the course of their lifetime, never offends, never makes a mistake, never has any regrets. Why do we assume that virtue and evil are absolutes, that a person is either completely good or thoroughly bad, then label them such. Do we not, each of us, do things that help our fellow beings and things that hurt them, all within the same lifetime.

Even the finest beings who have lived among us, the likes of Mahandas Gandhi, Jesus Christ, Socrates, Buddha and Martin Luther King, as focused and as fine as they could live, had at least one person who disagreed with them enough to want to see them dead.

This is the task of life: to learn and to experience all that we can so that we, in wisdom, can make choices as to who we will be and what we will do. As we make our choices and our mistakes, we learn, change, grow, and evolve.

Why do we believe that when we see a person acting dishonourably, that they are incapable of goodness any more than when we see a person acting honourably, that they are incapable of ill-will? We have spent thousands of years learning that all life and all beings are ever changing, learning the "knowledge of good and evil," and the effect of each, learning that, as our understanding increases, we begin to choose wisely.

The value of the past is this, that it has brought us to this present moment; beyond that, we must let go of the past and the mistakes of the past. It is time to move on and make peace -- individually and collectively. We are not what we were, nor what we will yet become.

Let us see every being as one striving upward on a journey of discovery, not unlike our own, and forgive the differences that days and generations past have created. For how many years and how many generations, will we harbour anger within our hearts towards those who have offended us before either an apology is extended or forgiveness given.

Apologize to another if your actions have harmed them in any way; for, what action is there -- short of taking another person's life -- for which one cannot apologize and ask forgiveness of the one offended.

Let us extend the apologies and accept them; let us make peace with one another and with the past, then move on from here.

Where we go from here is a choice we are free to make. We are designing our own reality. In all of our actions, our every thought, our every choice, we are free to choose. Let us remove the barriers that bind us and go wherever we decide, become whatever we wish, answering the call of our spirit, according to a standard of our own devising. Let us suppress no idea, thought, or quest for knowledge, for there is no "can't" and there is no "should." We are free beings. We can live as we choose. Let us choose wisely.

Chapter 4

The jurisdiction of free-will extends into the realm of thought. One can infringe upon the free-will of another through, not only action or emotional coercion, but also through the manipulation of thought itself.

It has been long believed that in the privacy of our thought-space we are, and ever were, free to think what we choose. Yet when another's thought is imposed upon us to think about, enact and live, a serious offense against free-will is committed -- especially if we believe that the choices to think and act that way were freely made.

If another can focus your attention on a subject that they want you to think about and can lead you to make a decision based upon that thought, be on guard for your free-will. If another withholds information from you that might have lead you to make a different choice, be on guard for your free-will.

We can only manifest into action that which we think about, and we can only think about those things which we have come to know. Free-will is violated when knowledge and information is restricted or controlled. We cannot make a choice unless we understand the choice to be made.

Perhaps one of the greatest infringements into the minds and free-will of the rising generation comes through the medium of television.

The programming of the mind by television tells us what information we should consider important and how to use that information in our lives. It shows us pictures of "what life is meant to be lived like," and configures the mind as to how it is to perform.

Television is one-way, direct visual input into the brain.

I have noticed that while watching television the images take over a large part of my thinking process, that my other thought processes actually slow down.

All that we know we learn by what we see and hear. Watching television is a real experience; however, the images seen are not real, but our consciousness cannot easily distinguish between what it sees on television and the rest of our human experiences.

The images and the messages contained on television are the result of another person's thoughts and choices, telling us what they think is important for us to know and withholding from us what they feel we do not need to know -- another person makes that determination and decision for us.

Thus television sets up an interference pattern in our consciousness and creates an altered perception of life. Our mind, thinking that what we have seen on television is real, uses these images and messages as the basis for our choices and our manifest actions.

Television -- the TELL THE VISION machine -- is setting the agenda and defining the focus of our thoughts. It is filtering the images of our existence.

About the time that we acquired television, we stopped going for evening walks through our neighbourhoods, we stopped saying hello to our neighbours, and we moved from sitting on our front porches to our newly air-conditioned living rooms and our fenced-in back patios. We separated ourselves from each other, stopped listening to the stories of each other's lives, disconnected from those around us, and started to fear one another. We turned to television to find out what was happening in our world and in the lives of others, rather than trusting our own observations and seeking knowledge on our own. We began to live vicarious experiences through the messages brought into our own home and the homes of millions of other sequestered beings. Our society became a society, not of manifest meaning, but of prepackaged meaning and programmed reality. We began to be shown a common viewpoint, while trusting that the makers of the messages were all-knowing, all-wise human beings who would tell us what we most need to know and what is in the best interest of all. (A silly assumption to make.)

More and more, we are making decisions based, not upon our own experience and knowledge, but based upon what another wants us to think and to know -- or not know. Perhaps part of the intent of television programming is to keep us from thinking on our own, or talking with each other, or seeing a different point of view other than what we are being programmed to think.

So what are the messages of television?

The first is programmed self-dissatisfaction. It goes like this: We cannot be a complete, whole or happy human being unless we buy and own such and such a car, wear a certain cologne, look thin, handsome or beautiful, travel on a specific airline, eat the right brand of soup, wash our clothes with a "new, improved" detergent, are seen in the right designer-label jeans, or spend money. We are told that we cannot be content unless we possess or consume something that we do not have, that we cannot be happy until we buy at least one more thing than we presently own. It is a message of material consumption which tells us that our happiest and most valued citizens are those beings who consume and possess the most, and that to do otherwise is to be not good enough.

The second message is programmed greed. It says that money, jobs, and the economy matter more than anything else in this world, that to be engaged in support of the economic system is the single most important activity that a human being can do. It tells us that the purpose of life is an economic one, that life is a career, that all else takes second place. It tells us that no matter what transpires, as long as money changes hands, it is a good thing, regardless of the effect, and that we should give up all else in pursuit of money and in support of economic growth.

The third message is programmed powerlessness. It tells us that things are the way they are and we cannot change them, that it does not matter if we think differently than others because individuals are powerless to make a difference.

This is the programming that takes those who possess specialized knowledge about things that the rest of us might not know but need to know, and makes them outcasts because of their knowledge. If you think differently, you are labelled as part of a "special interest group," not worthy of serious consideration, not part of the mainstream way of thinking. It implies that thinking differently from the messages of mass media programming sets one apart from the whole rest of humanity, that everyone else thinks the same as each other but differently from you. It creates the image that if you are concerned about the environment, nuclear power, social justice, homelessness, and a myriad of other concerns, you are not to be taken seriously, that those views are extremist, to be set aside, ignored, or discounted. Even if your thoughts are shared by many, this message implies that your knowledge, experience, and opinion do not matter.

Since we do not really talk or listen to one another, we do not really know what other people are thinking about. Therefore, even though it is not true, the message goes forth, "You are powerless to change the thinking of others because they all think the way we are telling you they think."

The fourth message is programmed fear.

Saying: "It's a big, bad, ugly world out there; do not go out walking alone, it is not safe; our streets are violent," this is the message that has made us afraid to say hello to other human beings walking down the street, somehow feeling that a "hello" will put us in danger. "Do not talk to strangers."

We are told: People cannot be trusted; do not talk to them. Trust television to tell you what people are thinking about and what is happening in the world, what you need to know. No need to find out on your own. We know best, "Stay tuned, details at ten." Stay home where it is safe and watch more television while the police protect you from the bogey-man. They will take care of you. Be afraid.

Leo Tolstoy said, "If we must be afraid, let us be afraid of what is really alarming, and not what we imagine as alarming."3

It is an insidious thing to create fear. Yet, that is what our television programming is doing. We are disconnecting from each other and becoming afraid of one another. Crime is not rising but fear of crime is.

When there is fear, there is no freedom.

As we watch television and our fear rises, we call for more laws and stiffer penalties to protect us, and we justify restricting the free movement of individuals within our society.

If we continue distrusting one another and enacting controls over our liberties, we do not yet know where we could be heading. If we continue to call for laws and police to protect us from one another, we will soon give up our freedom for protection from what we fear, and we will have no more freedom.

Let us not allow fear to destroy us.

Consider the possibility that things might not be the way we are told they are by the TELL THE VISION machine. Just because something is repeated often, it does not make it true. Don't believe everything you see or hear on television.

Musician Ozzy Osbourne, in one of his songs, writes, "The media sells it and you fill the role." Television, by directing the focus of our thoughts, tells us what to think, who to be, and what to do. It is the manipulation of our consciousness in a way that leaves many unaware of its effect. The struggle for control of the mind, the human consciousness, is the struggle for control of and power over humanity, the struggle to control the direction of our evolution.

Any technology is neither inherently good or bad. But what happens when a medium like television, with such power to influence what we focus on and think, comes into a culture that is obsessed with greed, obedience and control?

Recently a series of polls were conducted to find out what people were thinking about. They were asked: "What is the most pressing issue facing us today?" A particular social issue was not even listed by the respondents as one of the issues they felt was important. Over the following two weeks, the issue received a lot of coverage on television. It was discussed on talk shows, newscasts, documentaries, and current affairs shows. It was an issue that the media decided to discuss extensively over that period of time. At the end of the two week period, another series of polls were conducted, again to find out what people thought was "the most pressing issue facing us today." This time that particular social issue was number one on the list. The most pressing issue in their minds had not even been a thought two weeks earlier.

Although we cannot speak with credibility to any subject that we do not know of our own experience, it seems that when we are told on television that something is important, we think it is important, trusting the message and accepting it as our own.

There are those who strongly oppose the decriminalization of hemp, not because they have any personal knowledge about it or experience with it, or know any one who has, but rather because television tells them it is a bad thing.

There are those who believe the national debt and the economy are our most pressing issues, not because their experience with economics is any more than shopping and balancing their cheque books, but rather because television tells them it is so.

There are those who believe that we live in a free country, even though they have never stood up for a principle long enough to test it, only because television tells them they are free.

All is not what it seems on television. If you want to know what is going on in our country, go walk around for awhile, reconnect with human beings. Go hear what you hear and see what you see, listen to others tell their story, then decide what you think.

I wonder how many thoughts will not be thought today because the television was on. I wonder how many actions, that otherwise would have happened, will not take form because television was on. I wonder how many questions will not be asked or how many conversations will not be held.

I wonder if television could keep us from knowing what we need to know or doing what we most need to do as a generation. I wonder if it could keep us from becoming what we would otherwise become. I wonder, if we turn off the programming of our mind and exercised our free-will fully, thinking and acting as we choose, what we would create with our lives.

I have, in my mind, a favourite fantasy where one-by-one people begin smashing their televisions then putting it in their front yards. No demonstration, no violent protest, just a quiet rebellion in the name of free-will. First one, then two, then four, twenty, five hundred, a thousand, more, smashed televisions sitting silent, saying to all, "I am a free being. I will think what I choose to think. I will live the life I choose to live."

Chapter 5

The year was 1992. Southeast Asia. Thailand.

Over the years, the military had, many times, taken control of the democratic system of government under which the people of Thailand lived. As one military coup followed another, and as the corruption of their military leaders became more apparent, the people of Thailand finally said, "Enough."

Demonstrations began. For many days there were clashes between the military and the people of Thailand. Bangkok -- the capitol -- was sealed off; no inward or outward travel was allowed. The military was mobilized and thousands of troops converging on the city from the outlying areas.

As the demonstrations increased in number and intensity, the military began shooting.

One woman told me that she went looking for her son who was missing. She was taken into a large room where there were several hundred corpses piled together. She dug through the dead bodies until she found her son. She then left to find a truck to transport his body home but when she returned many hours later, the room was empty.

A soldier later told me that the bodies had been transported to a military base outside the city where they were buried in large mass graves. Between six and eight hundred people disappeared and were presumed dead, but official government figures, covering up what the army had done, said the death toll was 68 -- the number of those who had arrived at hospitals alive and later died.

The King of Thailand, King Bhumibol Adulyadej, is a democratic monarch. Because of constitutional changes over the years, he holds very little political or military power. He spent several years in a Buddhist monastery as a monk before he became king. Since then, he has spent his entire life serving the people of Thailand and working for their well-being. He is a good man and is deeply loved by the people of his country.

When the clashes between the soldiers and demonstrators intensified, the King summoned both the head of the military and the head of the demonstrators to his palace. He told them that it was not right for Thai soldiers to kill Thai citizens, that to pit one against the other would only tear the country apart.

At the King's request, the two leaders went on television together. They told the soldiers and citizens of Thailand that their King was asking all of them to stop the killing, the fighting, and the demonstrations, that their king was asking for peace.

Within 24 hours, the entire country was peaceful. The killing stopped. The fighting stopped. The demonstrations stopped. All because their King had asked them to.

In my entire life, it was the highest manifestation of respect I have ever witnessed towards one human being. The entire country stopped fighting because of the words of one man.

It seems to me that respect is a higher principle than obedience. Obedience can be forced -- it is possible for someone to make another bend to their will through threats, violence, punishment, coercion or fear -- but it is impossible for someone to make another human being respect them.

Respect can only be given freely. We can live worthy of it and hope it comes, or we can bestow it upon those we choose, but no one can demand it, expect it, order it, or take it from another. Respect is not a right: if I receive the respect of another, it is a high honour; if I respect another, it is a great gift.

It was respect, not fear, that brought peace to the people of Thailand. One thing they know, where there is forced obedience, coercion, or the violation of free-will, respect is never present, and when respect is present, forced obedience is never necessary.

Chapter 6

Just because a law exists is not reason enough to obey that law.

We often call an action illegal without concern for the deeper principles which should be considered, like our humanity, our compassion, our need to gather together with one another, and our free-will.

In San Francisco, California, over 800 volunteers with an organization called "Food, Not Bombs," were arrested for violating a law against feeding the hungry and the homeless. One man, Keith McHenry, has been arrested 92 times since 1988 for giving out free food to those in need and is now facing a possible life in prison under California's "three strikes and your out" anti-crime bill. Another man, Robert Kahn, was sentenced to 60 days in jail for giving a woman a bagel in one of the cities parks.4

In Seattle Washington, it is illegal to sit on the side-walks. When homeless youth, tired of walking around for ten or twelve hours a day with no place to sit or rest, demonstrated against the new bylaw, the police riot squad arrived, beat them, and arrested them for their "illegal assembly," even though freedom of assembly and the right to protest are guaranteed in the United States Constitution.5

Do our leaders even know what they are passing into law, as they pass volumes, and volumes, and volumes of new rules each year and rarely remove any?

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, it is against City Bylaws to sit on the grass in the public park.6

In Victoria, British Columbia, it is illegal for a musician to make music outside on the street without a license, and in England, rave dances have been outlawed. Music and dancing? If one can no longer celebrate life, sing, make music, dance and be joyous, what is left? It seems ironic to me that we struggle to preserve Canadian culture and then ban it from our streets.

There are so many rules that, if our governments desired, every man, woman, and child could be arrested for disobeying some law at some point in their life. It is impossible, even if one wished to, to live blameless and completely law-abiding any more. We do not even know, cannot know, what all the rules are.

I was given a ticket for "Trespassing on public land which is closed to the public," whatever that means.

If the rules are more complicated than every citizen can understand, they are too complex. If the rules are more numerous than every citizen can learn, there are too many. Why does it take a person six years of intensive university study to learn and understand the rules that every citizen is required to follow?

I have noticed that in our North American culture we reserve our most severe punishment for when we disobey those in authority over us, whether it is parents, teachers, police, or any other authority. We are taught to be obedient, to not question authority; we are taught that those in authority know better than we do the best way for us to live our lives. From the time we are young, we are taught, "Do what you are told!"

Where did the mindset that people could not be trusted to make their own choices or govern themselves so must be told what to do, come from? I have never authorized any person or organization to be my guardian. I need no government to protect me from my own choices or actions. I need no government to protect me from myself.

A victimless crime, where no one is hurt and no property is damaged, has no place within a free society. A victimless crime, which defines an action as illegal just because someone thinks you should not do it, is nothing more than forcing obedience and control. If no one is being hurt by your actions, who can say you cannot or should not do what you will?

Why would we want to continue following the programming of the past? Coercion, force, or threats are violations of free-will. "Obey or be punished" is a violation of free-will.

In Christianity, god was the great law giver. Even heaven had its law. Human beings were taught that their duty was to obey the rules of god without questioning them, that god knew better than we did the best way for us to live our lives. We were taught that if we obeyed these rules of god, good things would happen to us, and if we did not, bad things would happen to us. Obey or go to hell. Obey or be punished.

That concept changed our culture to such a degree that it now affects our entire social structure and all of our positions of authority. Our kings were like gods and our governments were like kings, assuming authority to make rules and threatening those who would not obey.

Our government is the great law giver today. Human beings are taught that their duty is to obey the rules of governments without questioning them, that our governments know better than we do the best way for us to live our lives. We are taught that if we obey these rules, good things will happen to us, and if we do not, bad things will happen to us. Obey or go to jail. Obey or be punished. (We are the only species on the planet who puts our own kind in cages.)

Our culture is obsessed with obedience.

When I was four years old, we lived on a busy street. My mother taught me to look both ways before I crossed the road. She said, "If there are no cars coming, it is safe to cross." My mother was right. I have never been hit by a car because of my mother's advice. Recently, in Portland, Oregon, I stopped by a curb on a narrow street, waiting for the cars to pass. I looked both ways and when it was safe, I crossed the street. Two policemen stopped me. They told me, "Here in the United States, we cross on the green and we stop on the red."

I told them, "When I was four, my mother taught me to look both ways and if no cars were coming, it was safe to cross. It was safe to cross so I crossed." To which, one of them replied, "Well, don't you think you can be retrained?" I thought, "Are you questioning my mother?" but I replied simply, "No. Why would I want to be?"

I have never given up responsibility for my own safety or well-being to any other person, to any police organization, or to any government. I accept full responsibility for my safety and will exercise my own judgement as to what is and what is not a safe action for me to take. I know how to cross the street safely. I can do that. I do not need to wait for a wheel in a yellow box to click around to the right position to tell me when I can cross the street. To do so makes me an obedient part of the machine. It makes sense to me that if I am walking down the street and there is a good reason to stop I will stop, but if there is not a good reason to stop then why would I? To walk down the street and periodically stop for no reason, other than because a machine says stop, turns me into a non-thinking robot. Why would I want to be "retrained." Being conscious and accepting responsibility for my own well-being is fine with me.

I have heard the argument that if we do not have law and order, we will have anarchy. This is often said by those in positions of authority, using a tone of voice implying that anarchy is the worst of all possible conditions that human society could face. William Hurd wrote, "Anarchy is not the presence of violence, but the absence of authority."

We have never, in the history of our species, created a civilization based upon free-will. It is a school of thought that we, as a species, have never tried. We do not know that it would not work. We cannot know until we try. This I do know: the reason the old-school authorities fear it so much is because they would lose the power to make rules and say, "Obey me or be punished..."

Wherein comes the authority for another to tell me what I can or cannot do to myself, with myself, or by myself? Obedience for obedience sake is senseless.

We must end this obsession with obedience and accept responsibility for our own lives. No politician, with their flagrant disregard for the law and the good of all, can assume the right to tell me how best to live my life.

They say, that if I do not obey their rules, I will be punished by the loss of my liberty. I say, that if I obey the rules only because the rules are there, I have no liberty.

Chapter 7

In the United States, there are more than 1.5 million people in jail, more than in any other country of the world except the former Soviet Union. A further 3 million are under court-appointed supervision.

In "the most free country of the world," the number of people and the percentage of the population held without liberty by their government has doubled in the past ten years. Of those 1.5 million citizens in jail, one in every four is there for a drug offense. A decade ago, only one in ten inmates was there for a drug offense. In one state alone, Oregon, the number of prison beds has gone from 1,000 five years ago to a proposed 16,000 by the year 2005, with anyone over 15 years old automatically tried as an adult.7

The recently passed United States anti-crime bill will double the number of prisons over the next ten years. The new crime bill also authorizes the hiring of 100,000 more police officers.

One hundred thousand more police officers! In other countries, the army is used to "maintain law and order" but in the United States, the police are given that task.

Tell me that is a free country.

Four times in my life I have lived in countries which were either police states or under military control. Yet, I have never seen any country look or act more like a police state than the United States does now. Throughout the United States, everywhere I went, I saw uniforms. The restrictions being placed upon the citizens of the United States grow daily. The ever-increasing police presence should be raising alarm bells but, for many, it is not -- mostly because their television is telling them that this is necessary to stay free.

Television is getting people accepting of the idea of an increased police presence -- even welcoming it -- through both the message of "crime is everywhere," and through a massive number of police shows. Police are becoming our cultural heros on television, and everywhere, in these rough economic times, police are convincing us that "It is pretty bad out there," in order for them to justify keeping their jobs. I do not see many police being laid off. On the contrary, I see more police being hired, and I see more people being arrested -- even though violent crime is decreasing -- because of the war on drugs.

Those who see what is happening and are struggling against this trend, for the most part, are being repressed.

The justice system has become one of the largest growth industries in the United States. Jobs are being created to employ thousands of people as policemen, court and jail employees, construction workers, lawyers, and supply industry workers. There are many people making a lot of money restricting the liberties of their fellow citizens and calling it a good thing because it is good for the economy. Through the creation of fear and in the name of law and order, a profitable environment of tight control is being justified and carried out.

We do not need to follow the lead of the United States. We, in Canada, often act as if a problem in the United States is a problem in our midst. Indeed, the inflow of media from their country continues to blur the line between their ideology and ours. Yet their country is not our country, their thoughts are not our thoughts, their aggressive need for control is not ours.

Nevertheless, American mind-programming is shaping the way we think. We sit watching the same newscasts, the same police shows, the same violence on television that our friends south of the border create and watch. Can we be immune from the effect? Are their political, economic, and military agendas increasingly taking over our mindset in the comfort of our living rooms?

From what I am seeing, I am inclined to say that the answer is yes.

Here in Canada, we are "jailing [our] population at a rate higher than that of any other western democracy except the United States,"and our police are increasing being trained using United States police training methods.

I am sorry to say that I have lost my respect for our police. There was a time when a police officer would walk up to a Canadian and there would be a feeling of mutual respect for one another. More and more, when a police officer walks up to one of us, I see them creating an atmosphere of fear and intimidation. Perhaps what troubles me the most is that, repeatedly, I see people in situations that are not threatening or violent until the police arrive. Then, it is too often the police that put forth aggression, causing the situation to quickly intensify beyond what the situation required. I have seen this too many times to believe it is a random occurrence. What I do know is that our police -- remember when they were called peace officers -- are becoming more violent.

In Vancouver, British Columbia, there is a police officer who, when he arrests people, routinely takes them in the paddy wagon to Stanley Park where he beats them up before taking them to the station.

And in Montreal, a man who had broken a window was so badly beaten by five police officers that he lapsed into a coma for a year and a half before he died.9 (For more information, see note)  The officers were found guilt of assault, and sentenced to weekends in jail so that they could continue working as police officers during the week.

In Toronto, Ontario, another man was beaten into unconsciousness between the time of his arrest and his arrival at the police station. He died while in police custody. The police officer was cleared of any wrong-doing and is back on the job.

These are the men who are policing us.

In several divisions of the Toronto police department, such beatings are routine. Sometimes the police officers put on masks or disguises to avoid being identified afterwards.

Last year, a man assaulted a police officer. He was charged with the assault. Two weeks later, before it went to trial, nine police officers took him to a deserted area near the waterfront where they beat him. During the investigation that followed, the officers were suspended WITH PAY. After a time they were put on "restricted duties," meaning that they were given inside office jobs doing "meaningful police work," until the investigation ended. No criminal charges were brought against them, and the Deputy Chief of Police recommended that the suspensions be lifted, clearing the way for their return to their jobs on our streets. The man who took the beating is still facing the charges against him.10

These are the men who are policing us.

I have seen three police officers holding a man down on the ground while another officer beat him.

In another city, there is a police officer who every welfare day, stops young girls on the street after they have cashed their welfare cheques. He has them empty their pockets, and when he finds their money, he accuses them of making the money selling drugs. He confiscates the money without charging them or giving them a receipt. If they protest, he arrests them and charges them with a drug offense. If they do not protest, he takes the money and leaves. This happens month after month, and those victimized are left with no money for rent or food. Often they end up breaking the law to survive.

I watched a police officer walk up to a man who was drinking a beer in a public place. The officer slammed him against a concrete wall, hitting his head. The officer then took his fist and punched the man in the face. The man, surprised, began protesting, "You hit me. What did you do that for?" The officer replied, "for resisting arrest." I was standing six feet away, close enough to witness and hear the entire event. The officer had asked him a question but had never given him time to answer, nor placed him under arrest, nor indicated any intention to do so. However, using resisting arrest as justification for hitting the man, the officer later pulled out the handcuffs and arrested him.

Seeing me watching, the officer then threatened to arrest me for loitering if I did not leave. I told the officer, "I saw you hit that man." At that point the officer got very angry, almost a rage, pointed his finger at me, and shouted, "You're lying! You're lying!"

I had watched the whole thing from beginning to end and had heard every word. I was not lying. He had hit the man and the officer was in the wrong. Not only did the police officer hit the man without provocation but he lied to cover it up.

There are too many incidents to ignore them.

In the holding cells of another city, police hold phone books up to the heads of Cree Indians that they have arrested and hit the book with a night stick. This has the same effect as hitting their head with the stick, but it leaves no marks.

These are the men who are policing us, in the name of law and order.

In one of our daily newspapers, a police officer was quoted as saying, "We are the biggest, meanest gang in the city."11

Canadians are not violent by nature. Too often, in situations where talking could resolve a problem, our police are not seeking peaceful solutions. Over and over again, our police are going into otherwise peaceful situations, using more force than is necessary, and accelerating the violence. How many times do people have to say, "the problem started after the police arrived," before we realize that they may be part of the problem.

It seems that a police officer can hit, strike, or beat whomever he wishes, without consequence. We have created the perception in our society that our police officers, because they are supposed to uphold the law, would never abuse their authority or break the law themselves. If one defends themself against the blows of a police officer, they are often beaten worse then charged with assaulting an officer. A police officer can hit you but you cannot hit back. Why do we accept that it is alright for police to engage in dishonest masquerades while, at the same time, we do not accept that it is alright for anyone else to do the same?12

Why are we creating the type of police we need to be afraid of, and why are we allowing them to police us?

How many times do we read in the press where someone is accusing the police of beating them? And how many times do we discount those reports, assuming that because the person has been charged with a crime that they are somehow less trustworthy and their story is unreliable? Perhaps we should not be so quick to disbelieve those reports.

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, a police officer told me that it is easier for him to harass street kids than it is for him to harass kids from the suburbs. He said that kids from the suburbs hire good lawyers who file complaints and lawsuits against the police department. He said that they can make a whole lot of trouble, and it is not worth it, but that the street kids have little recourse, that there is not much that they can do because they do not have money, and no one will listen to them anyway.

If you have had no negative interaction with the police, you do not know that of which I speak. If it has not happened to you, then it has just not happened to you but that does not mean it is not happening. One cannot speak about that which they do not know. If you want to know, go walk around awhile and see, or ask our youth, many of them know.

We give a police officer a gun and the right to use it against another human being.

We give a police officer the right to put another human being in a cage and take away their freedom.

We give a police officer the right to strike another human being with a hand or stick.

We have given these human beings a great deal of power.

Some will abuse it.

Right now, whenever a police officer abuses the rights of his position, a citizen can file a formal complaint at the police station. An internal investigation takes place, in which the police determine if one of their own officers committed any wrong doing. In essence, the police are policing the police. That troubles me.

Justice Wallace Oppal of the British Columbia Supreme Court headed a commission which for two years looked at police work in British Columbia. He said that many people came forward with concerns about police abuse of power and the process by which complaints are investigated. He held 57 days of public hearings and received over 400 pages of written submissions concerning public complaints and accountability of the police. In the commission's report, Justice Oppal wrote:

In a democracy, those empowered to restrict our liberties must, ultimately, be answerable to the people of the democracy. We need to call back the police, rein them in. The police must not become a law unto themselves, nor a threat to our peace, freedom, or free-will.

Chapter 8

The human beings in our government are doing something which is intensely dangerous. It is a procedure called, Orders in Council. This is how it works:

When Parliament passes a new law affecting some area of life, the new law is written in such a way that it gives the Cabinet Minister in charge of that area the power to issue orders and make future decisions without consulting parliament.

Armed with this power, the cabinet* then meets, privately, and issues Orders in Council. These orders are sweeping decisions which affect all of us, our lives, our laws, social programs, our economy, our country and our communities. Yet these decisions are made in closed meetings, with no public debate, and with no vote of our elected representatives in parliament. It is basically rule by decree. They meet, make a decision, issue an Order in Council, and it is law. Rules, regulations, amendments, decisions and orders which have a profound effect upon our lives are being made behind closed doors, without open, democratic process.

* The federal cabinet is made up of the Prime Minister and those selected by him to head the various Departments of the Federal Government. They are all members of the same party and answer directly to the Prime Minister. There is no representation from the other political parties, no "opposition". The cabinet meetings are not open to the public.

This happens often. There were 2,087 Orders in Council in 1996.14

The Orders included: many changes to our tax laws and tax court procedures, amendments to our prison regulations, the transfer of public land to private corporations and individuals, the cancellation of election results for Native Chiefs and Council members, and the exemption of 30 individuals and several corporations from paying income taxes.

Other Orders included: changes under the criminal code that were kept secret and never published, permission for two defense contractors to not pay back a loan to the federal government, decisions to enter into international trade, tax, and economic agreements with other countries, permission for corporations to not comply with environmental standards and the removal of environmental protection status from land areas and bodies of water needed for commercial development.

Our federal Cabinet ordered: the investigation of individuals, the removal of oil and mineral rights from a native band, the transfer of other native land into the control of a logging company, the participation of our military in foreign operations, and changes to the Canada Pension Plan.

They set the price of bait sold to fisherman in Newfoundland and the price paid for grain bought from farmers by the Canadian Wheat Board, increased the fees paid for government services (a form of taxation), and ended farm grain subsidies.

They restricted the right of some occupations to strike and removed from certain government employees the right to file complaints under the PUBLIC SERVICE EMPLOYMENT ACT.

The Cabinet: changed food additives regulations and pharmaceutical drug standards, amended laws concerning biotechnology, set aside Canadian safety standards for vehicles imported from the United States, revised the sports fishing rules, and changed the minimum wage laws.

The Orders also included: authorization to increase our national debt through loans and treasury bonds, the exchange of nuclear technology with other countries, the appointment of many individuals to government positions, and permission for specific companies to import goods without paying the necessary import taxes required by law.

In addition to the many changes of regulations and amendments to laws, perhaps the most troubling of all are the Orders in Council which are never released or made public, the secret details of which are unknown to the citizens of this country.

The authority to not publish, to withhold, or to deny public access to Orders in Council and other government regulations -- the power to keep them secret -- has been given to the federal Cabinet under a law called the STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT.15  Like many laws passed in Parliament, it also is written in such a way that it gives the cabinet power to issue orders, make regulations and changes under the Act itself.

In a dangerous way, the Act of Parliament which gives the human beings running our country the power to keep us from knowing what they are doing, also gives them the power to change the rules under which they do it.

It takes three pages in the STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT to list all the areas of the Act which the cabinet can privately change just by issuing Orders in Council.

Without consulting Parliament, the cabinet basically can change all the rules under which they keep their actions, decisions and orders secret. They can change which government regulations are required to be published, which are not, what information can be withheld from public access and the reasons why something should not be disclosed. In this democracy of ours, they have the power to regulate the disclosure or nondisclosure of information.16

Simply put, they can keep us from knowing what they are doing and change the rules of secrecy by which they do it. And they do not even have to tell us that they changed the rules.*


Again, what troubles me is that these decisions and Orders which affect us greatly -- even the ones that are published -- are all made in closed meetings, with no public debate, and no input or vote by our elected representatives in parliament. A few human beings, behind closed doors are deciding the rules that we must live by. Our federal cabinet has the power to rule by decree, and to keep us from knowing what they are doing.

The principle of electing from among us our brightest and wisest to reason together for the good of all has become a mandate of a few to rule over many.

Democracy, as a concept, was developed to ensure that every person has a say in the running of his or her community and country. In a democracy, the decision to be governed and the endowment of the power to govern both rest with the people.

Simply put, the decision to establish a government over us and the giving of the power for that government to govern us are our decisions to make.

Indeed, if we wish, we can change our minds, we can change our government, we can change the form of our government, or we can abandon the whole idea and govern ourselves. The choice is ours and the power to do it is ours. Such is democracy; anything less is not.

Our political systems and our governments are not sacred or unchangeable. They are nothing more than ideas, the manifestation of the thoughts of people who are now dead. As long as these ideas serve our purposes, so be it, but as soon as they no longer meet our needs, we are free to form, out of our thoughts, a better way for this time and place.

History and life have taught us that any position of power is only as good or as oppressive as the person filling it. Human beings often abuse the power given to them.

In order to protect us from abuse of power by those we put into positions of trust over us, we govern over the human beings running our government by telling them the limits of their power. We establish rules that tell them what they can and cannot do.

These rules are called a constitution.

A constitution defines the rules that a government cannot break. The human beings who call themselves our leaders cannot pass laws or do things in violation of the rules that we establish over them.

Because the decision to be governed and the power to govern rests with the people, THE POWER TO ESTABLISH OR ALTER THE CONSTITUTION IS, OR SHOULD BE, ALWAYS IN THE HANDS OF THE PEOPLE GOVERNED.

Ironically, even though we have the freedom, power and right to establish and change the form of our governing system, as it now stands, it is almost impossible, in this democracy of ours, for the people of this country to change or alter the system of government that we have in our midst.

The human beings running our government have established a constitution that only they can legally change, giving themselves and no one else the power to alter the rules by which they are bound.17 (For more information, see note)

At the same time, our CRIMINAL CODE says that it is illegal to advocate "governmental change within Canada," in any way other than through "the authority of law," meaning the narrowly prescribed rules set out in our Constitution and over which the human beings who call themselves our leaders have control. Any effort to change our government system, outside of the rules that have been established by those running our government, is illegal. We can be put in jail for up to fourteen years, just for considering it, talking with others about it, or writing about it.18

There is another thing that the human beings running our government have done which is intensely dangerous. It is a little more difficult to explain but it is important to understand.

Within the constitution that they established, the men and women running our country have given the government and the laws they pass more power and greater force over us and our fundamental rights than we ever intended for them to have.

In essence, they have put the government's right to rule above the constitution, instead of the constitution ruling over the actions and laws of our government.

Please understand clearly the implications of this.

We believe we live in a free country, that we have certain fundamental human rights which are guaranteed and which no one, including our government, can violate. These fundamental rights that we all assume we have and take for granted are written into our constitution.19  They are important rights for us to possess and protect. They seem like good rules to require a government to live by, EXCEPT THAT OUR GOVERNMENT IS NOT REQUIRED TO FOLLOW THEM.

They are:

If charged with an offence, the right:

Section 33 of our constitution, THE CANADIAN CHARTER OF RIGHTS AND FREEDOMS, says that our federal parliament and our provincial legislatures have the power and the right to pass laws and legislation which exempt them from abiding by the rights and freedoms listed above.20 (For more information,see note)

They can suspend these rules whenever they wish, simply by declaring that these rules do not apply to the new legislation.

By changing the constitution, the government was able to change the rules by which they are bound. What we believe to be our most fundamental rights are no longer guaranteed.

The human beings running our government, in acknowledging our fundamental rights, have assumed the position that they are conferring those rights, and that in conferring them, that they have the power to remove or override them.

The government has become a higher power than the constitution. Concerning that which we see as our fundamental, universal, individual rights, our government says, "We will follow these rules as long as we wish to follow them but whenever we decide, we will do what we want. We only have to follow these rules when we choose."

The constitution which we have established to rein in and control the human beings running our government, to keep them from oppressing citizens, or passing unjust laws, or abusing their positions of power to the detriment of individuals, has been written in such a way as to give them the power to do precisely that, if they choose, whenever they choose, and it is legal.

When the people of this country feel, at an intuitive, innergut level, that something is not right, it does not matter how legal it is declared to be. For even the most oppressive governments, as far as possible, set laws in place so that they never break their own laws while oppressing their citizens.

It is important that our political system operates, and is seen to operate, with the highest of integrity and the highest of respect for our most basic rights. Yet, I am certain that the government system we have created to act on our behalf is neither acting on our behalf any more, nor acting for the good of all any more. When our politicians can violate our rights with ease to further their own process, our trust in our political system rapidly begins to wane.

When our trust in our political leaders begins to erode, we must, collectively, take a close look, for that erosion of trust is an indication that something is seriously amiss.

Chapter 9

What would happen if we had human beings in our government that we could trust, human beings who were moral enough that we did not always have to be looking over our shoulders to make sure our government was neither oppressing us nor ripping us off.

As the economic New World Order continues to unfold before our eyes, I see more and more countries shifting their security from defense (guarding their borders against foreign aggression) to internal security (guarding against internal dissent). I cannot help but wonder why.

The Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) was created by an act of Parliament in 1984. All of its employees, after receiving a security clearance and taking an oath of secrecy, have the same powers as police officers.21

Its function is to gather and analyze intelligence information about people and activities "suspected of constituting threats to the security of Canada..."22

They are basically a secret police force whose job it is to spy on "any person or class of persons,"23 that it feels may be a threat to our government, and "to intercept any communication or obtain any information, record, document or thing...for that purpose."24

Their job is to spy on Canadians.

With a budget of $214 million dollars a year, they have offices in every major city in Canada and have authorization to "enter into an arrangement or otherwise cooperate with...any police force."25

They operate directly under, and answer to, the Federal Cabinet, which appoints an Inspector General over the agency.26

When Canadians expressed fear that CSIS would abuse the rights of individuals, an oversight committee called the Security Intelligence Review Committee was created to monitor CSIS. The members of the committee are all appointed by the Prime Minister and his Cabinet. By law, none of them can be elected members of parliament or members of the Senate, and all must take an oath of secrecy.27

In this democracy of ours, both CSIS and the review committee do not answer directly to Parliament or to our democratically-elected representatives.

According to the Act that created CSIS, the committee members review reports of what CSIS is doing and, "have access to any information under the control of the Service," EXCEPT FOR any "confidence of the Queen's Privy Council for Canada," meaning the Federal Cabinet.28

Basically, the members of the oversight committee are appointed by, and answer to, the Prime Minister and his cabinet and do not have access to any information that the Prime Minister and his cabinet do not want them to see.

I wonder what sort of oversight power they can really possess when CSIS and the people who are supposed to be watching CSIS both answer to the same human beings, and those human beings have control over what information the watchers get to see. They do not have access to what the beings leading our government do not want them, or us, to know -- our government's secrets -- yet they are supposed to protect us from abuse of power by CSIS.

Do the members of the Review Committee really know what CSIS is up to or what those running our government is using CSIS to find out? Do they have any real desire to preserve the liberties of all Canadians or any power to do it? Or are they just a figurehead group so that we can feel more secure thinking that someone is watching those that are watching us?

The United Nations INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, which Canada has agreed to follow, states, "No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence..."29  Despite this, the human beings working for CSIS are legally exempted, under Canadian law, from abiding by the entire Part VI of our CRIMINAL CODE, entitled "Invasion of Privacy." This part of the criminal code, which they do not need to follow, covers the rules and procedures under which human beings in our police forces and government can intercept telephone and other communications between individuals.30

In addition, the actions of CSIS employees are also exempted from the CROWN LIABILITY ACT, meaning that the government is not responsible or liable for any damage done through the gathering of information, the interception of communications, or the use of that information by CSIS members.31  You cannot sue the government if the actions of CSIS members cause you harm in any way.

In the United States congress, a bill was passed which requires all electronic communications -- computers, fax machines, central telephone exchanges, bank ATM machines, television signals, all electronic communications -- to be build or designed in such a way that the transmission of data could be intercepted and tapped into from a distant location.

Any electronic data moving from one place to another is now easily wire-tappable because of software and/or hardware design.

One month after that bill was passed in the United States congress, a bill was quietly introduced in our parliament to, "align our law with the newly-passed communication bill in the United States."

It seems that, with the use of high-speed computers, every transmission of data through our banks, our cable companies, our computers, our telephones, the use of our cash-debit and credit cards, and our social insurance numbers can all be intercepted and recorded in a data base.32  Virtually our every move can be traced. The technology and laws are in place for this to happen.

Here in Canada, our government has passed a law called the PRIVACY ACT. It authorizes the government to create "personal information banks", with data on individuals. These personal files contain information regarding:

Supposedly, the purpose of the PRIVACY ACT is to "protect the privacy of individuals" and any personal information about them that the government possesses, and to allow individuals the "right of access to that information", meaning the right for someone to see their own file.34

The Act defines the circumstances under which the government can keep or release personal information about someone, what a person has to do to see the information kept on themselves, and the process by which individuals can correct any mistakes in their files.

However, finding and seeing your own files is not made easy to do. An individual requesting access to his or her own files: must make the request in writing, pay a fee, and identify the personal information banks in which the information is kept, including the name of the government department which has the information, or provide,

In other words to access your own file, you must know that it exists, where in the government it exists and in which data bank it is kept before you can apply to see it.

Once you apply, the head of a government institution can refuse you access to your file and the information in it, and he or she does not even have to tell you whether or not there is a file on you in existence.36

The Act has twelve sections covering six pages listing all the reasons why the government can refuse to let you see your own file and the information in it.37

Moreover, merely by issuing an Order in Council, the cabinet can designate some personal information banks as "exempt banks".38  Access to any personal information contained in an exempt information bank can be withheld or its existence denied. These are the "secret files."

The PRIVACY ACT uses the same conditions which authorizes CSIS to exist as sufficient grounds for the Federal Cabinet to keep private files on individuals and to not disclose their existence or provide access to them.39

And, while the PRIVACY ACT says that,

this means that human beings working for any government institution, doing whatever it is set up to do, are authorized to gather whatever information they need to gather to do it. That, of course, includes the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

In our country, our government has an agency to spy on us and keep secret files on us and, according to the law, it is legal. (For more information on OUR GOVERNMENT'S SECRETS AND THEIR POWER TO SUPPRESS INFORMATION, see appendix 1.)

Not surprisingly, like many laws passed by Parliament, the PRIVACY ACT also gives the cabinet the power to change the regulations of the PRIVACY ACT itself.

By issuing Orders in Council, the cabinet can change the regulations concerning which government agencies can investigate us, what personal information is kept, where it is kept, how it is used, whether or not we have access to the information, the rules of that access, and what information is kept secret.41

Without consulting Parliament, without any debate or vote of our elected representatives, or any other open, democratic process, the human beings running our country can change the rules of secrecy that they follow.

There was another law passed by those who call themselves our leaders which extends their power to restrict us even further.

By issuing an Order in Council, under authorization of the EMERGENCY MEASURES ACT (1988) -- which replaced the War Measures Act -- our federal cabinet has the power to declare a state of emergency in Canada, in the event of natural disasters, war, or to maintain public order.42

Under the EMERGENCY MEASURES ACT, the word "emergency" is never clearly defined. Whatever the cabinet considers sufficient cause for concern could be an emergency: a strike, social disruption, a threat to property, or sovereignty, civil disobedience, political dissent, or anything else.

The Act defines a "Public Order Emergency" as any:

where "threats to the security to Canada" is defined by the CANADIAN SECURITY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE ACT, the same Act which created CSIS.43

The definition which authorizes CSIS to exist and function every day is the same definition of what would constitute a public order emergency.

It would seem to me that, by using the same definition, if the threat to Canada is sufficient for CSIS to exist every day, it could be argued that the grounds for declaring a state of emergency exists continuously and that a state of emergency could, therefore, be declared any time the cabinet desired.

And, even though a declaration of emergency automatically expires after a specified period of time, cabinet has the power, under the Act, to renew the order repeatedly, for as long as they want.

Under a state of emergency, many of our fundamental rights would be suspended, giving the cabinet "extraordinary powers to issue whatever orders or regulations it believes are necessary to deal with an emergency."44

Anyone found guilty of violating any order or regulation made by the cabinet under a state of emergency can be punished with "a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars or imprisonment not exceeding five years, or both."45

Even though our CRIMINAL CODE already states that, under some circumstances, "an assembly of three or more persons" is "an unlawful assembly"46, if a state of emergency is declared, our federal cabinet has the power to restrict or prohibit "any public assembly", or travel.47

Alan Borovoy, a lawyer with the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, said that the power to regulate or prohibit public assemblies under the Act,

Supposedly to protect us from abuse of power, the Act establishes a parliamentary review committee to review "the exercise of powers and the performance of duties" under a declared state of emergency. However, the review committee is very small. It is made up of only ONE member from each party in parliament and ONE member of each party in the senate.

Part of their job is to review any order or regulation which is "exempted from publication" or parliamentary review.

This means that they review any secret order that is made under the state of emergency, but each member of the review committee is required by law to take an oath of secrecy to not disclose the information to anyone.49

Again I ask, in this democracy of ours, where is the protection from abuse of power? A small, hand-picked, secret committee?

I want to know what the human beings running our country are up to. I want to know what their intentions are and what information is being withheld from us?

What are they doing behind closed doors, with CSIS, Orders in Council, secret files on individuals, and the power to restrict our rights and suppress information, while claiming they are the only ones with the power to change our Constitution?

What do those who call themselves our leaders not want us to know, and why?

Is it possible that they are deliberately suppressing information to keep us from knowing what we should know and most need to know in order to make informed decisions for ourselves and our country?

Is it possible they know that what they are doing and the truth about our current state of affairs, if known, would be unacceptable to us, and that the internal security measures are being built up to ensure that their order of things will succeed? Why are they spying on us and why do we need a secret police force anyway?

Let me ask you honestly: has your government ever lied to you?

Now, keep in mind that the power to govern is bestowed by us; keep in mind that our government only exists because we have created it, that the human beings of our government have only the power we give them, in the form we give it, until we take it away or alter it.

If we do not like the direction we are going as a country, perhaps it is time to find out what is going on, and perhaps it is time to change the rules by which our government governs.

That power rests within us.

You say we are free -- prove it. Show it to be so, or make it so.

Chapter 10

Foreign journalists and diplomats know that citizens inside a country are often the last to know or understand what is happening in their midst. Governments have a vested interest in communicating policies and priorities in a controlled and positive way. Therefore, the media does not report fully or accurately the state of a country or the actions of its leaders.

Often that which citizens most need to know is left unsaid and unreported.

Sometimes a few individuals do see clearly what is happening but not many. Most people, focusing on the immediacy of their life and their need for work and food, do not see or understand fully what is going on around them. By the time they do, it is often too late.

Burma is a Buddhist country and, generally, a peaceful country. The people of Burma are known for their gentleness, tolerance, love of life, and love of peace. Like Canadians, they are not easily stirred up to anger or quick to action -- they first wait, watch, and think -- but when it is time to act, they act.

Burma was, for many years, a part of the British Empire. Upon its independence from England, Burma established a parliamentary democracy, modelling its educational and legal systems after the British.

Like Canada, it is a country rich in natural resources -- one of the wealthiest in Southeast Asia -- with timber, oil, gold, jade, rubber, rubies, and more.

After its independence, Burma's leaders became greedy and corrupt. They began siphoning funds and resources to their own benefit, ignoring the will and best interests of their people. The country plunged deep into debt and the economy deteriorated.

Laws were enacted which made the flow of resources out of Burma easier, and their leaders began selling their country's resources to foreign corporations. Even though Burma was considered a wealthy country, the people of Burma did not receive the benefits from their wealth. Both the resources and the profit from the resources were leaving their country. Health care and education declined. Jobs became harder to get. Some people began to go hungry.

The people of Burma became poorer and poorer while their leaders lived opulent lives and thrived.

Their leaders began making changes to their constitution, giving the leaders the legal power to restrict the basic rights that had been guaranteed by their constitution.

In the name of internal security, a secret police force was established to "maintain law and order," and to keep track of dissidents. They would spy on the people of Burma, gathering information on individuals, political parties, government officials, private citizens, or whomever they wished.

No one really knew who they spied on, what information they held in their files, or what they did with it. All the people really knew was that the secret police had immense power, and that many people got hurt as a result. The secret police answered to the most powerful man in the country, a man who used the secret police and the information they gathered to destroy those who disagreed with him. They created fear.

To keep people from uniting together, the Burmese political and military leaders created distractions, usually by pitting one ethnic or cultural minority against another then focusing on the ensuing conflict. While people were arguing, battling, or struggling against each other, their leaders stood back and consolidated their power. In a classic example of "divide and conquer," individuals and groups of people, who otherwise would have united together against their leaders, were distracted and weakened through fear and hatred.

By August 1988, the gentle people of Burma had seen enough. Their lives were hard, they had few jobs, no money, and little food, their leaders were corrupt, and all their wealth and resources were being sold from under them.

Demonstrations began. A full onequarter of the population, ten million out of forty million people, striving to regain control of their democracy, economy, and country, took to the streets in protest.

The government responded quickly. The constitution was suspended, along with the rights it had guaranteed, and the democratic rule of law was replace by a military council which ruled by decree. Whatever orders the council issued automatically became law.

The army and police were called out to "restore law and order." Thousands of Burmese were shot in the streets by their own soldiers and policemen, and thousands more were arrested. Often, people disappeared and the families of those killed or arrested did not know where their sons and daughters had disappeared to.

Those arrested were tortured and beaten while in police custody. Many died.

Secret trials were held. The rights of justice that many believed were guaranteed by their constitution, were suspended or ignored -- the same rights that many in Canada believe are guaranteed by our constitution.

Those accused were often convicted of crimes different than those they had been arrested for. Some were tried more than once for the same offence or given a second sentence after the first one was completed. Some were found guilty without ever being told what they were charged with, and many were convicted using forced confessions extracted under torture.

Sentences were extreme. Some were sentenced to ten, twenty-five or forty years for disagreeing with their government. Those who spoke in their own defense received more severe sentences than those who remained silent, and throughout all of Burma, it became illegal for 3 or more persons to be together in one place at the same time.

The Burmese media reported none of this, saying only that the government continued to have the support of the people and that the police and army had done a good job "restoring law and order" -- the government's version of law and order.

The Burmese leadership then began rewriting the constitution to ensure the further entrenchment of their hold on power.

Aung San Suu Kyi, a quiet, non-violent woman in her forties, is leading the people of Burma in their struggle to regain control of their democracy and freedom. She was arrested and held for six years without ever being charged with an offence or ever being tried in a court of law. While under arrest, she was awarded the Nobel Peace prize for her non-violent efforts to restore democracy to Burma. Recently she was arrested again, and many of her supporters continue to be arrested and tortured, or killed.

Now let me ask you, are the people of Burma so different from Canadians that what happened there would never happen here?

Are our leaders somehow more moral or less greedy? Are our resources less valuable?

Are our east/west, french/english, native/nonnative cultural and ethnic conflicts any less of a distraction? Is our constitution any less susceptible to manipulation or our constitutional rights any more secure?

Do we have any reason to believe that CSIS and our police would act more honourably and not abuse their power in their quest for law and order, or that they would fail to obey any Order in Council issued by our cabinet under a state of emergency?

Are the Canadian laws prohibiting "illegal gatherings" of three or more persons any less likely to be used to suppress dissent? And, are the secret trials held in our courtrooms any less secret?50

Think before you say, "Oh, it couldn't happen here." If it could happen to the gentle people of Burma, it could happen to the gentle people of Canada.

Chapter 11

A corporation is not alive.

A corporation cannot feel joy or suffering, pleasure or pain. A corporation cannot not think. It has no conscious awareness of being.

I have never met a corporation. I cannot look a corporation in the eye.

A corporation is a creation of human consciousness, an idea, a thought in our minds.

It is a decision of human beings to come together, to expend energy, to accomplish a task requiring the efforts of many. A corporation is nothing more than a group of human beings doing what they have chosen to do.

The coming together of human beings to manifest this idea we call a corporation has but one purpose, that is the accumulation of money, material, and wealth; and like a great efficient machine, a corporation does its task, taking and taking all that it can -- the more it takes, the more profit it makes, the better it is seen to be.

The only reason that we have created corporations is greed. No matter what else a corporation might do, if it does not generate wealth for those who own or control it, it ceases to operate as an idea.

Those who work for corporations are "Just doing their job". And like a huge machine running out of control, it continues on its own; no one is running it. No one is steering it. No one is responsible. We have become the gears inside.

In corporate law, employees are not responsible for the actions of a corporation, they are just the employees. If a person, "just doing their job," their part, focusing on corporate profitability, makes a corporate decision that hurts someone in some way, they are not responsible, they are just an employee of the corporation.

Moreover, the shareholders (owners) are not responsible for the actions of the corporation either. They are just the shareholders.

There is no personal accountability for the actions done by individuals in the name of a corporation. No one is responsible and no one is to blame.

This gives the human beings who are running our corporations permission to do whatever they need to do to make money, without thought as to its effect on other human beings. If a corporation causes another to suffer, they can always say that they did not cause the suffering, the corporation did. They were just doing their job.

Yet, a corporation is incapable of being responsible for its actions.

Because a corporation has no consciousness, it can have no values or moral altruistic motives. It cannot make choices as to what it will do or know whether or not what it is doing is beneficial to human beings.

If a corporation hurts a human being, where is its regret, its sadness, its remorse? Where is its understanding of its mistake or its apology, its desire to learn or its commitment to not hurt others in the future?

If a corporation breaks a law, where is its loss of liberty? It cannot go to jail. It doesn't lose its right to continue freely within our society. There is no penalty. If it is fined, the fine is accounted as a cost against the bottom line, part of the price of doing business.

Yet, in a court of law, a corporation has full standing as if it were human, as if it were a conscious, thinking, responsible life form. A corporation can stand it a courtroom opposite a human being and receive audience before the judge, the same as if the corporation were alive. If a legal action brought by the corporation against a human being is sustained by the court, the person could lose their liberty and be sent to jail. The same is not true in reverse.

It is not the corporations that are undertaking the actions which are causing so much harm to this planet and so much suffering in the lives of conscious, thinking, human beings, human beings are. A corporation acts only according to the choices made by human beings. More truthfully, a corporation takes no action; the actions done in the name of a corporation are nothing more than the decisions and actions of human beings.

Individuals can hide behind the logos of corporations for only so long. When will we penalize the decision makers or owners of a corporation for their actions, rather than allowing them to hide behind an idea created in our minds? When will we remove a corporation's right to do business in our midst when its employees break the law. When will our courts be returned to individuals facing individuals, rather than individuals against a non-living idea, a thought which is not alive.

We are responsible for the effects of our choices.

Our country sells billions of dollars worth of natural resources, a full one-third of our exports.51  Our country is also billions of dollars in debt.

Why are we labouring so intensely to survive, to pay for the basic needs of life, while our resources are being sold from under us into the control of large, multinational corporations and for the benefit of only a few? Where are our resources going, and where are the billions of dollars from our resources going? Why are corporations paying almost no taxes and profiting from our resources when there are Canadians who are suffering in their lives and our country possesses both the wealth and the compassion to assist them?

There seems to be a belief that because we are in debt, we have no choice but to sell our resources, regardless of whether or not that is in our best interest to do or what we want to do. Television continues to tell us that our most pressing issue is our national debt, the economy, and jobs. Perhaps that is not true.

Our national debt is to economics what original sin is to Catholics.52  How can I accept that because of the actions and choices of those who lived in the past, I am born a debtor and enter this life with a financial obligation?

How can I accept that I am not born free, that I am born owing the resources and labour of my life to pay an obligation already placed upon me, an obligation that I did not, nor would not, choose to take upon myself?

How can I accept that I am responsible for a decision that someone else made?

I alone am responsible for the effects of the choices and actions THAT I ALONE MAKE. I am not responsible for the choices or actions of others nor any obligation they place upon me.

Others before me lived their life and did with this world what they did. That which happened in the past is now history. What is done is done. They had their choices to make, and they made them.

Now we stand at a different time. We are not obligated to carry out the decisions of the past nor to submit to an obligation imposed upon us. This is our time in history. We are writing the storyline and we will do what we will. We have our choices to make, and we will make them.

We have been told that our excessive consumption in the past has put us into debt and that we must sell our present and future resources to pay for our past consumption. I do not understand how consuming more than we should today will make up for consuming more than we should have in the past.

I do not understand how selling our resources to corporations whose only purpose is to take as much as we will let them, as fast as we will let them, without regard to the effect, will help us.

We seem to believe that whenever money changes hands that it is a good thing, regardless of the effect. That might not be true. We should collectively take a close look at the effects before we decide whether or not it is a good thing, whether or not to continue in the direction we are going.

Chapter 12

Money has become our god.

Our prayer, our mantra, our constant chant has become, "money, jobs, and the economy."

Listen to each other as we walk along our streets, listen to our politicians, our media, "money, jobs, and the economy."

We are so in love with money that we spend all our time seeking it and all our energy moving the wealth around.

Yet money is only a piece of a tree with ink on it. It has value because we give it value. It has value in our mind. Beyond the value we give it, it is only a piece of paper. We can write on it, make a paper airplane, or start a fire with it. It has pretty pictures, nice colours and the face of a lady, but in the end, it is only a piece of a tree with ink on it.

It has become the focus of our thoughts and the basis of the choices we are making. When we hear something over, and over, and over again, we come to believe what we hear, "money, jobs, and the economy."

We are all raised with the same message. We hold money to be our highest value then wonder why our leaders sell their integrity and why people steal.

Believing that money matters more than anything else, we will do whatever we feel is necessary in our quest for money. The human mind is programmable, and greed is the program which is running.

All I see is that there are some men who are using the labour of many people's lives to give form to their greed and thirst for power. I see the ghetto-ization of our planet where the poor and the debtors must live in squalid conditions in one part of the world while a small group of multi-billionaires live well, somewhere else.

I keep hearing the words "New World Order" but the words do not explain what that is or what that means. Under the lead of the United States, the world is being divided into three economic trade zones -- North/South America, Europe, and Asia -- where human beings, in the name of multinational corporations, will have the ability to do business without interference from the governments of individual countries. The human beings running these corporations will have the power to buy, sell, trade, extract resources, invest, and do business in each country, but the governments in each country will no long posses the power to pass laws, restrict or otherwise regulate corporate behaviour within their own countries.

The trade agreements and rules setting up these trade zones, restrict the jurisdiction of sovereign nations and the power of people to interfere in the right of corporations to do business. Moreover, the signing of these agreements are tying the hands of futures governments, removing from them the power to make changes. We are creating a post-government, corporate world in which corporations and the people running them are becoming more powerful than individual sovereign nations.53 (For more information, see note).

There has been a subtle shift in language over the past few years. Democracy used to mean the right of individuals to control their destiny and to have a voice in how their country and community was run. It meant self-determination and the expression of free-will, freedom of thought, movement, assembly etc. At one point, in the struggle against the ideology of communism, the media and politicians started to talk about democracy as the struggle for "freedom and free market reform." It then began to be called the struggle for "free enterprise and market reform." The definition of democracy was bastardized, changed, going from personal freedom, free-will, and self-determination to the right to do business.

Former United States Secretary of State, J.F. Dulles, once said, "There are two ways of conquering a foreign nation. One is to gain control of its people by force of arms. The other is to gain control of its economy by financial means."54

In an economic model, to control the world's economy would be to control the world. Currently, 5% of the world's population control 83% of the wealth. Those who control the world's economy, through the World Trade Organization, the World Bank, and large multinational corporations, have the power to create shortages and surpluses at will, to set prices of goods and the price of the currencies buying those goods, to create profits or losses at will, to put governments and peoples into debt, to create jobs and unemployment, and to access the resources of any country.

I see a form of corporate colonialism where the resources of the world are being drawn together under the control of and for the benefit of a few.

World Corporate Rule -- the New World Order.

It seems to be a numbers racket, forcing us to sell what we otherwise might not sell and to labour for causes which we otherwise might not labour for, all because we believe that money, jobs, and the economy matter more than anything else.

The world's money changers possess the power to destabilize a country through economic means. Through the use of monetary or corporate policy, it is possible to create conditions of suffering for the people of a country through unemployment, hunger, high prices, or the lack of currency.

In turn, the government of a country can become unstable as people blame their leaders for their hardships and suffering. Such social unrest, more than once has led to violence, killings, civil war, or military intervention. More than once, it has lead to the fall of a government, either by election or government takeovers.

Politicians, wanting to avoid social unrest and the loss of power, will do what is necessary to keep such unrest from rising. Too often this means that leaders suppress political and social dissent while conforming their economic and political policies to the wishes of the money changers.

Individuals who stand in the way of money, jobs, and the economy, often become victims of violence, imprisonment, beatings, or death.

Good men are killed for thirty pieces of silver.

Native South Americans, living in the tropical rainforest are being killed because their way of life and their villages stand in the way of logging operations.

In British Columbia, eight hundred people were put in jail for disagreeing with a decision to log Clayoquat Sound, the last, large temperate rain forest still standing on the planet. Eight hundred Canadians lost their liberty at the insistence of human beings who run a multinational logging corporation which makes $180 million dollars profit a year, who claimed in a court of law that, above all else, they had the right to make money.55

Ken Sarowiwa, a Nigerian dissident, was executed by his government because he opposed the devastation caused to his people and their land by the human beings of Shell Oil Company. The Nigerian ambassador to the United Nations said that the execution of Ken Sarowiwa was "necessary for the economic growth and stability of Nigeria."56

Throughout the world, the human beings running multinational corporations are hiring armed, trained soldiers as private, corporate armies. These corporate armies are killing, using violence and weapons of war, to ensure that multinational corporate interests are protected and that no one stands in the way of their "right to make money."* For more information on THE PRIVATIZATION OF VIOLENCE, see Appendix 2)

We, as human beings, have a history of killing each other. The reasons are many -- passion, religion, politics, love, anger, fear -- but when we put someone to death for economic reasons, for corporate economic greed, then money has become more valuable than human life?

Every human being has certain fundamental, universal human rights, the right to life, to freedom of thought, expression, religion, association, and more.

Our human rights are not our rights because they were endowed upon us as a benevolent gift from our governments, they are our rights by nature of our birth, a birthright.

We put these rights into our laws and constitutions in an attempt to protect us from abuse of power by our governments but they are the rights that all human beings are entitled to, regardless of whether or not we ever put them into our formal structure of law.

However, under the form in which our government and legal systems have been set up, the legal guarantees of these rights only protect us from government violation of these rights. The law provides us with no protection from violation of our human rights by an individual or corporation.

It is important to know that under a corporate economic structure, there is no acknowledgement of, nor honouring of, our right of being or our most basic human rights.

If you can make a man starve for an idea, it is of little comfort for him to know that he is protected under the law from legal oppression. Even if my government cannot put me in jail for writing what I think, if someone can deprive me of my life or my livelihood because they disagree with my ideas, then where is my freedom.

I once met a woman who, although she did not lose her life or go to jail for what she believed, lost her job, her income, and her ability to feed her family because someone disagreed with what she thought and felt she had no right to express it.

If we are going to make wise choices as to the direction that we want to be heading, the most important thing we can do is to let each other know what is going on. We need to write, gather together, talk to each other, share information, and speak the truth of what we see and know. To silence or suppress voices or ideas because someone wants to keep us from knowing is detrimental to all of us. If we are kept from making choices that we might otherwise make because information is withheld or people are silenced, then a great wrong is being committed.

If the human beings we have chosen to lead us are not making wise choices, then we need to know what is going on. If they are not telling us, then we need to find out on our own.

For one generation now, our leaders have not been acting worthy of the respect of the people.

Whose lead are our leaders following? It seems that the power to govern has been sold to the highest bidder.

There was a time in the not-too-distant past, in which a politician who sold his country's interests, sovereignty, or future into the hands of another human being, corporation, or government was hung as a traitor. Now it is called investment, free trade, global economy, market reform, business as usual.

There was a time in the not-too-distant past, in which a politician who received money to influence his vote was charged with bribery, an illegal act. Now it is called political contributions, lobby money, "a normal part of the political process".57

Are the human beings who are running our government creating infrastructure for multinational corporations or creating that which is needed for the smooth running of individual lives?

The men and women in the legislative branch of our government seem to have a conflict of interest, and the human beings of our government are choosing economic greed over the well-being of all citizens.

The human beings running multinational corporations and the money changers of the world are manipulating those entrusted to govern us in directions other than where they should be taking us.

Why are we allowing corporate interests to influence politicians to trade public land and resources into the control of those who run corporations?

Soon, if we are not careful, our government system, our land, our resources, our very lives, will no longer be under our own control? Once lost, the struggle to regain control over our own destiny could be difficult, even bloody.

In the name of, "the right to do business," the human beings we have chosen to lead us have so corrupted the ideals of freedom and peace that we will fight wars for oil and kill human beings for greed, we will put one another in jail, and call it good because it is good for business.

Money, jobs and the economy?

Chapter 13

I am a human being.

I am alive.

By reason of my birth, I have a place upon this planet, I have the right to life.

My right to be here is not more important than yours; my right to life is no less than yours.

I was born a free man, without obligation. My right to life is free.

I know what I need to live. I can only survive a few minutes without air, a few days without water, a few weeks without food.

I spend part of my time sleeping. I need a place to piss and to shit. If it is cold, I need shelter or a fire to keep me warm.

Food, water, air, a place to sleep, a place to shit, and shelter from the cold -- through generations of time, our needs have not changed. Through generations of time, that which sustains life has remained the same.

There is a story told of two brothers. The oldest was a hunter. His brother was a farmer. One day the hunter came back from hunting. He had had no success. He was very hungry and felt weak for lack of food. He went to his brother who was cooking and said, "Feed me, please, for I am hungry." The younger, knowing that his brother would do anything for food said, "I will feed you if you sell to me your birthright, your inheritance from our father." So the hunter, near to dying, sold his birthright for some bread and a bowl of soup.58

The right to life is my birthright. That which sustains life is my birthright.

I have sold my birthright to no one.

No one owns it. No one has the right to own it. No one can sell it or has the right to sell it. Anyone who destroys it is taking my right to life away from me.

Chapter 14

I went to City Hall in Victoria, British Columbia, to the office of the Bylaw Enforcement Officer to ask a question, "Where within the city of Victoria can I legally sleep?"

He pulled out his books and started looking through the regulations and began telling me all the places I could not sleep.

I was told I could not sleep in a park or on the beach. I could not sleep in a car or on a bench. I could not sleep on a sidewalk nor on the grounds of any city building.

He looked and looked, finally coming up with one possibility. There is no legal restriction against sleeping in the middle of a street. He said that if I could find a street that was closed to traffic but which was still designated as a street, I could sleep in the middle of it without breaking any law.

Where can I lay down my head upon the earth and go to sleep without fearing arrest or needing to pay money for the right to sleep?

There was no place within the entire city where I could lie down and sleep for free.

There were some in the city who slept on the grounds of an large, old, abandoned Catholic school but the police came along, arrested them, and confiscated their belongings. Patrols were set up to keep others from sleeping there.

A few began sleeping on the beach. They built small fires to stay warm until the fire department came along with their high pressure hoses and sprayed everyone with water while they slept.

There are 100 million street kids worldwide. In the United States, said to be "the richest, freest, and most powerful nation" on the earth, there are 7 million homeless people.59

In New York City, a park called Thomkin Park was given by the King of England to the people of New York for a "commons" area,* to be used freely as they wished. Since the beginning of the city, it was called, "The People's Park." For several hundred years, a person with no other place to sleep could go there. In recent times, as the numbers of homeless began to rise, more and more began using the park as a place to sleep.

* In English tradition, villages, towns and cities had "common," which was an area of land set aside for all the people to use as they chose, without restriction.

In 1990-91, the police went three times to clear the park of its homeless population, using violence to beat those who resisted. The city then put up fences to keep people out of "the people's park," but each time they returned. Finally, the city sent in a bulldozer in the middle of the night to remove the temporary shelters the homeless had built. Twelve people were killed by the bulldozer and the falling rubble.

In Canada, in our National and Provincial parks, it is illegal to sleep anywhere unless we pay money to sleep in officially designated campgrounds. A person cannot even sleep in their own parked car or camper, nor in the backyard of someone they know who lives in the park.

In Toronto, Ontario, so many Canadians are now living on the street that bylaws against sleeping in public places are unenforceable. At the same time, buildings which could be used to shelter our unemployed and homeless sit locked and empty. Those who enter these buildings looking for shelter are arrested for trespassing.

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, I, again, went to City Hall, to the office of the City Attorney, again asking, "Where within the city of Halifax is there some public land where I can sleep without breaking the law?"

Again I was told, nowhere: no park, no beach, no public land, nowhere within the city limits.

When I went into a boarded-up, abandoned building, looking for a place, I was arrested by the city police.

Throughout Canada, in the cities of this country, it is against the law to simply sleep on any public or private land. Unless someone is paying money to someone else, in the form of a land purchase, or taxes, or rent, unless someone, somewhere, is profiting from it, it is illegal to sleep.

If I am tired, why can I not lay down my head somewhere and give my body the rest it needs?

I affirm, by reason of my birth, my inherent right under natural law to sleep upon the earth, free, without the threat of penalty or loss of liberty.

We need to decriminalize sleep.

As human beings, we need sleep to stay alive.

Chapter 15

How much clean water still remains on the planet?

I suspect there is not much, and I have no doubt that most of it is in Canada.

Only 2.7 percent of the world's water is fresh water. Most of that is locked up in ice, snow and glaciers. Little more than one/one-hundredth of one percent (0.01%) is both fresh and accessible.60  Of that small amount, only three/onethousandths of one percent (0.003%) is drinkable.61

The Great Lakes, which contain one-fifth of all the surface fresh water on earth, cover 246,000 square kilometres and contain about six quadrillion gallons. While they provide drinking water to nearly 40 million people, they also contain more than a thousand chemicals -- a quarter of which are toxic -- that were put there by human beings. More than 19,000 other lakes in Ontario have been damaged by acid rain.62

In most places in our industrial world, we are afraid to drink the water, swim in our lakes or eat the fish, and the rain has become deadly.

Worldwide, we are facing an intense water shortage. There is not enough water and almost no clean water.

Water consumption has sharply risen in recent decades, partly because of the increase in population -- we all need water to stay alive -- but mostly because of industrial use: pulp and paper production, manufacturing, mining, agriculture, and the production of electricity.

A Canadian household uses an average of 350 litres of water a day, most of it in the bathroom. We use more water to flush our toilets than anything else we do.63

Yet this is not much compared to the amount used by corporate industries. To give you an idea: nuclear power plants use 205 litres of water for each kilowatt-hour of electricity produced, and it takes 120,000 litres of water to manufacture one automobile.64 Add to that all the other industries and you begin to see the quantity of water required to support our corporate activities.

Unfortunately, many of the industries using our water, not only use lots of it but they often leave it more polluted than it was before they began.

An Environment Canada study found that 122 pulp mills in Canada poured their waste water directly into nearby rivers, lakes and oceans. Of these, 71 were virtually unregulated, and 30 of them were responsible for more than 70 percent of the known water pollution in Canada.65

The United States, our southern neighbour, has the highest consumption of water per person of any country in the world. Yet, they say that they need more.

Even the mighty Colorado River, which, over time, had enough force to cut the Grand Canyon, has so many dams and is diverted so many times that not one drop of it reaches the Pacific Ocean anymore.

Do they really need so much water?

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which the human beings running our government agreed to, says that United States corporations have the same rights in Canada as they would have if they were Canadian Companies. This means they have the same privileges under our laws and the same standing within our courts as Canadian companies do, that they have same the right to do business here.66

The agreement also says that United States Corporations have the right to buy, sell or trade any commodity, resource or product defined by the international trade agreement called GATT, the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade.67

The trade agreement GATT says that "ordinary natural water of all kinds," including ice and snow, is a resource commodity that can be bought and sold internationally.68

"On this basis, one may conclude that natural water will be treated as a good under the NAFTA, even when it is in its natural state. Accordingly, the NAFTA will apply to ground and surface fresh water in its natural state."69

Any water, whether in a river, lake, dams, reservoirs, pipeline or bottle, liquid or solid, is now considered a commodity good that can be traded, bought and sold.

At the time when NAFTA became law, Prime Minister Jean Chretien said that bulk Canadian water was not for sale under the North American Free Trade Agreement.70  However, in a letter dated, October 28, 1993, United States Trade Negotiator Mickey Kantor, wrote: "when water is traded as a good, all provisions of the agreements governing trade in goods apply."71

A close look at the trade agreements show that large scale water exports are covered under the Agreements. Our water can now be sold.

The United States wants our water.

We cannot even pass a law in Canada saying we will not sell our water. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement, any law passed domestically, by our federal, provincial or local governments, has no effect upon the agreement.72  We cannot pass a law within our own country that limits or goes against the agreement. The Agreement is above the power of our government to regulate or restrict matters within our own country, placing multinational corporate interests above our government's ability to govern. Under NAFTA, our government cannot prevent firms from doing business, even if their business investment is selling our water.

Even more than that, NAFTA states that once a resource has been exported to the United States, Canada is required to continue those exports and CANNOT reduce the amount being sold.

The part of the agreement which says we cannot end or reduce our exports to the United States covers ALL resources, including lumber, minerals, natural gas, and of course, water.

This means that once we begin selling water to the United States, we cannot change our mind. We cannot say, "We are not going to sell you our water anymore." We cannot say, "We are going to sell you less than before." This means that even if we have a national emergency or national shortage, we cannot say, "No," to the United States.73

The agreement basically says that once the tap is turned on, it cannot be turned off as long as NAFTA is in effect.

And the tap is being turned on.

Pipelines have already been built across the border to carry water and more are being planned.

More than once, the United States has used military might to protect "American interests" overseas. Often those "American interests" have been economic. It is not outside the realm of possibility that the United States would fight a war for our water and resources in the same way that they have fought wars over oil and other resources in other parts of the world. If it came down to it, I have no doubt that the United States would take military action to enforce NAFTA.

But before it ever came to that, we, as Canadians, need to know that NAFTA can be cancelled. A vote of parliament giving the United States six months notice is all that is required to end the agreement.74

When the agreement was being negotiated, we were told by our leaders and the media that it was good for the economy and would create jobs, and that it, therefore, was good for Canada. It seems that the information we most needed to know to make wise choices in our lives was information that the human beings running our government wanted to keep us from knowing.

The human beings who call themselves our leaders are selling our water for money.

In other parts of the world, this has already happened. In 1990, England, under the direction of Margaret Thatcher, sold the country's water distribution system. This system of pipelines and water treatment facilities, which delivers water to homes and businesses, was sold into the control of private corporations. Since that time, the price of water has gone up at three times the rate of inflation. The cost to turn on the tap has risen so much that some households are now rationing their water because they can no longer afford to pay for it.75

Here in Canada, the government of Ontario has passed a law authorizing the selling the province's water distribution system to private corporations like England did, and Quebec has a similar plan. If these plans are executed, Canadians will not only end up paying more money for water but the water in the pipes could then be sold to the United States under the GATT and NAFTA agreements. Many corporations, including a number of pipeline companies, both Canadian and foreign, have expressed interest in the deal.76

Slowly we have gotten used to paying money for water. Every time we go into a restaurant or fast-food chain, we are expected to buy something to drink.

Drinking Coca-Cola, we pay more than a dollar for a glass of water with a little bit of colouring, sugar and flavouring. That glass of Coca-Cola costs 1,680 times the amount that the same volume of water costs.77  That is a lot of money to pay for something to drink.

Chapter 16

We are so dazzled by freedom as we walk through our grocery stores that we are overwhelmed by the choices of things to be bought.

In assuming that we can buy and consume whatever we wish and feeling that our only choice is what to buy, we fail to realize that we also have the choice of whether or not to buy, a choice that not every human being has.

I, each day, must ask myself, "At what price am I willing to live?" For when I am willing to allow another to suffer that my desires be met, the price of what I desire is too high.

The population of our planet is approaching 8 billion.

With 100 million more human beings every year, an additional one billion more every decade and exponental growth, the world's population is projected to double every two to three decades. Even if we slow the population growth, there will be at least 4.8 billion more human beings by the time the youth of today reach middle age. Every one of them will need to eat to stay alive.

That is a lot of people to feed. We are going to need a lot of food.

John Robbins, in his book, MAY ALL BE FED, gives a picture of the magnitude of the task at hand:

Right now, somewhere in the world a child dies of hungerrelated disease every two seconds.78  Forty thousand children starve to death on this planet each day.79

According to the World Health Organization, chronic hunger affects 1.3 billion people. Nearly one out of every four human beings do not have enough to eat.80

Have you eaten yet today?

MacDonalds, the fast food corporation, had an advertising slogan which said, "What you want is what you MacDonalds."

How many cows does it take for, "over 99 billion served," and how much food does it take to feed them?

Worldwide, there is a continuous herd of over "3.3 billion cattle, sheep, goats, buffalo and camels, which feed and work for human beings and [the number] keeps growing along with the human population."81

One third of all the grain produced on our planet is being fed to cattle and livestock,82 and 75 percent of all the corn, barley, sorghum, and oats imported by Third World countries is fed to animals, not to people.83

It seems that this is not a very efficient use of our land or our food; for while it takes only one pound of grain to produce a pound of bread, it takes sixteen pounds of grain to produce a pound of beef.84

By feeding our grain to cattle and livestock, we end up with only 6 percent as much food to feed human beings as we would have if we used the grain to feed ourselves.85

With so many people to feed, it is important for us to use our land wisely in the production of food.

The World Resources Institute, using satellite technology, has concluded that only 20% of the world's virgin forests remain, most of it Northern Canada, Northern Russia and the tropical rainforest of the Amazon.86 Yet, throughout the world more and more forests are being cut down to clear land to raise cattle.87

In Brazil, human beings working for multinational corporations have bulldozed, burned and destroyed hundred of millions of acres of Amazon tropical rain forests -- home to two million or more species of plant and animal life -- to produce pasture land and grass for cattle.88

In Latin America, one acre of land could produce over twelve hundred pounds of grain per year but using that same land to graze cattle will produce only about fifty pounds of meat.89

Even so, more than half of Latin America's beef production is exported.90 The United States alone imports almost three hundred million pounds of meat a year from Central and South America 91, while local people there go hungry.

In Guatemala, 75 percent of the children under five years of age are undernourished while the country exports forty million pounds of meat to the United States92, and in Costa Rica, also a major beef exporter, the average family eats less meat than the average American housecat.93

In MAY ALL BE FED, John Robbins writes, "It is impossible to ignore the fact that the same land that fed all those cattle could have fed many people."94  It is impossible to ignore the fact that if [North] Americans reduced their meat consumption by just 10 percent, enough grain would be saved to feed sixty million people.95

The International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank, and the World Trade Organization (WTO)96, under the guise of helping Third World countries, go into countries offering multi-million dollar loans for development.

Most often the money is used to build large agricultural and industrial mega-projects.

The industrial megaprojects -- such as dams, mines, or nuclear power stations -- provide the infrastructure that is needed by multinational corporations to extract and remove the resources of the country. These industrial projects often force local inhabitants off their ancestral land and, many times, are environmentally destructive. They do little to help improve the lives of local citizens.

These loans put the countries deep into debt. Forty countries, classified by the IMF as "heavily indebted" have debts at least twice their annual export revenues.97  Moreover, in order to pay back the debts incurred by these development loans, most countries which receive them have no choice but to sell control of their resources to multinational corporations. As a result, they lose control over their own economy.

Many of these loans have additional conditions that the country is obligated to meet. One of the most common is that the government must remove agricultural assistance to farmers and increase the amount of land cultivated for food export.

Farmers who used to grow food for the local markets are forced off their lands. The land is then placed under the control of corporations for large agricultural projects which produce food for cashcrop export to the United States and other wealthy countries.

The net result of this is that, even if a country's total food production increases, there is less food available for the people in that country to eat. More than once, governments in these countries end up borrowing more money -- this time to buy food to feed people -- placing them further into debt and decreasing their control over their own lives, lands and resources.

In the meantime, many go hungry.

Whether we are talking about coffee, bananas, beef, or anything else, the story is the same.

Western corporate economic control is driving millions to starvation so that we can have our cup of coffee in the morning and, "Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, pickles, onions, on a sesame seed bun," for lunch.

Worldwide, as we drive our farmers off the land, two things are happening: one, countries are losing their ability to feed themselves and be selfsufficient; and two, control over our food -- its growth, transportation, availability and use -- is increasingly being consolidated into the hands of those running our multinational corporations.

But these problems are not just far away, overseas, or in distant lands.

In Canada, through our participation in the World Bank and World Trade Organizations, and through international trade agreements, such as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)98 and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)99, the human beings who call themselves our leaders have also obligated Canada to eliminate agricultural subsidies to our farmers.

As a result, we have recently eliminated government assistance to farmers through transportation,100 marketing and other programs.

It is now becoming so expensive for farmers to grow food and to deliver it to where it needs to go that some farmers can no longer afford to keep farming. Many of our farmers are being forced off their land economically, and increasingly we are seeing the birth of large corporate farm operations with thousands of acres.

Before the end of the second world war, 80% of the population of Saskatchewan lived on farms, and Saskatchewan was known as the "breadbasket of the world." Now, only 20% of the population are still farming.

Perhaps, rather than paying our politicians, we would be smarter to pay our farmers. We need to make sure that those who are growing our food are taken care of.

In addition, those who call themselves our leaders, in signing the GATT agreement, authorized the registration, copyright and ownership of life forms by individuals and corporations. This means that any genetically-altered, genetically-engineered form of life -- seeds, plants, food, cloned mammals such as "dolly, the sheep," perhaps even one day humans -- can be patented, owned and sold for profit by the corporations and individuals who develop them.101

Knowledge and life can now be owned.

Even ignoring the long-term possibilities of humans beings being cloned and owned as multinational corporate slaves or human organ factories, the implications of this agreement have immediate impact upon our lives.

For example, suppose a farmer plants wheat which has been genetically altered and patented by a corporation. After growing his crop and harvesting it, if he keeps some to use as seed the following year, he would have to pay royalties to the company that "owned" the patent before planting it. He could not plant seed that he had grown himself without paying money to use it. If he did, he would be in violation of the law.

Moreover, the new varieties of grain that are being developed require more expensive fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides than those grown before. Farmers are becoming dependent upon chemical corporations in order to grow food that in the past grew without help.

A seed is an amazing thing, a genetic map of transformation. It can take soil, water and sunshine, and magically change the earth into something I can eat, something that tastes good, something which will keep me alive.

Who controls the seed pools? If suddenly, we needed to grown our own food -- whether on rooftops and balconies, in parks or front yards, or out somewhere in the middle of this wide expanse of land we call Canada -- where would the seeds come from? Who keeps them and has control over them, and would they be willing to share them so that all may be fed, or would they claim ownership of the right to life, keeping them for profit?

For all the money in the world, we cannot grow food without a seed.

Chapter 17

We in the west take food so for granted that many of us have never gone to bed hungry and have never gone to bed knowing we would have nothing to eat in the morning.

Does the reason why a person is hungry determine whether or not they are worthy to eat?

Here in Canada, we have attracted the criticism of the United Nations because "Canada has the second-highest number of poor children among the 18 industrialized nations, with more than one in seven living in poverty."102  Moreover, 20 percent of our population over 65 years old live below the poverty line.103

How a society treats its young, its elderly, those who are sick, weak or vulnerable, how it treats its poor or disabled is a mirror reflection of the society's compassion.

Today, right now, somewhere in our midst, someone is hungry.

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, some kind, compassionate people gathered together food that was donated by local farmers and local stores. They cooked up a big meal and took it to the public square in front of the library. They began feeding the hungry, unemployed, and homeless people of Halifax.

Soon the police arrived. Telling them that they did not have permission to be there or a license to serve food, the police ordered them to pack all the food away, to leave. When one person challenged the police officers as to why they would not allow hungry people to be fed, they replied simply, "We are just doing our job." Their job, no doubt, paid them a salary, giving them a home to go to and food to eat.

Even the Roman Centurions who killed the man Jesus, were "just doing their job." Doing one's job doesn't mean that what one is doing is right. Doing one's job doesn't necessarily mean that one should be doing what they are doing.

Where is our compassion?

Homelessness and hunger shake the foundation of our western middle-class dream. We don't like to look at it. We don't like to believe that our security is so fragile, that these people -- who are just like us -- could become so destitute, without shelter or something to eat.

So, hoping to make it go away, like a bad dream, we outlaw poverty, making it illegal for the homeless to be on the streets of our cities, making it illegal to feed them, making it illegal for hungry human beings to beg or to ask for what they need to survive. What do we expect them to do, go away somewhere, curl up and die of hunger? Indeed, if those who call themselves our leaders are unwilling or unable to help them, they should not make it illegal for them to ask another for help, nor make it illegal for another, out of compassion, to help them.

Unless we can make ourselves believe that their hunger and homelessness is their own fault, it is difficult for us to look away with a clear conscience -- so we blame the person for their own hunger.

We live in communities where we feel deep down, that the poor, the homeless, and the hungry, those who suffer, really deserve the misery they have. If we did not, we could not look away or walk away, we could not sit down to eat nor lie down to sleep at night, until we did something to help.

In this "global economy" that we herald in our media and our politicians praise in every speech, in this global economy that we are so proud of, we are able to get the oil wherever it is needed, to get our armies, tanks and guns wherever we want them, worldwide.

Then why not food?

If we really wanted to get food to the hungry, if it really mattered to us, we would.

The United States military budget is $750 MILLION dollars per day. Worldwide, the human beings who call themselves our leaders are spending $2 million dollars PER MINUTE on weapons!104

Somewhere, someone is making a lot of money from the killing of human beings.

The resources, energy, and organization needed to maintain the world military machine could feed many nations. Yet, somewhere, someone is dying of hunger because more money can be made from killing than feeding.

Such are our priorities.

Food is not a commodity of profit, it is a fundamental human right.

Yet twenty percent (20%) of all the food in North America is burned, bulldozed or destroyed.105  Think about that. A full one-fifth of all the food in North America, food for which people in other countries suffer and starve so that we can have it, is destroyed. As soon as food is no long of economic value, as soon as it is unable to be sold or otherwise converted to money, it is considered to be of no value at all and is discarded, even though there are hungry people on our streets. The message of our time is this: if you have no money, you cannot eat; if you have no money, you have no right to eat.

We must eat to live. Why is it we do not burn money because we cannot eat it, yet we throw food away because we cannot sell it?

If we are going to feed the planet at the current population rate, we are going to need more food grown on less land. We cannot afford to take any more land away from food production or put any more effort to war. We cannot allow food growers to go wanting nor allow our food system to fall under the economic control of a few.

What I find most disturbing is the plausibility of what I see happening. I see food quickly becoming a tool of control, wherein we must pay money for food we could have grown ourselves, selling our resources to get that money, and ever more people unable to find the work necessary to acquire what they need to live.

Chapter 18

Public hearings were held for a proposal to open new uranium mines in Northern Saskatchewan. At their conclusion, the government committee recommended that the mines should not be opened. They said that there was a surplus of uranium on the world market brought about by the collapse of the former Soviet Union; also, that there was no way to guarantee that the uranium from the proposed mines would not be used for nuclear weapons. At the time, a spokesperson for the government of Saskatchewan said that they would follow the committee's recommendations.

Too often the human beings running our governments respond to public pressure by simply waiting until time has passed and our attention is focused elsewhere before doing what they desire to do; or else, by making minor changes in their plans, they make it look like they are really listening to people when, in fact, their plans remain virtually unchanged.

Two years after the public hearings, after the flurry surrounding the new mines had died down, the beings within the Government of Saskatchewan approved plans for three new mines, saying, "The expansion of the Uranium Industry...will contribute to the provinces future ECONOMIC PROSPERITY AND SECURITY."106 (Emphasis added)

A multinational mining corporation was given a license to develop an open pit mine which contains 50 MILLION POUNDS of uranium107, and the largest deposits of highgrade uranium ever found worldwide were recently discovered in Saskatchewan.108

Meanwhile, the search for more continues. Human beings, in the name of mining corporations, spend more money on uranium exploration in Saskatchewan than anywhere else in the world.109

The reason is simple. Saskatchewan is the largest producer of uranium worldwide.110

Saskatchewan was also the site of another world record. An international record for the most radioactive liquid waste ever spilled into the environment up to that time was set at a uranium mine near Key Lake Saskatchewan. Between September 1983 and January 1984, eight spills released a total of 1,508,675 litres of radioactive waste.111

But Canada's interest in uranium extends beyond mining. Canada designs, sells, and builds CANDU nuclear reactors throughout the world.

Using billions of dollars of Canadian taxpayers money to finance the sales, the human beings in our government have sold nuclear reactors to India, Pakistan, China, Korea, Argentina, Taiwan and Romania.112

"Canadians have attempted to sell uranium and nuclear reactors to twentyfive countries since 1945"113, and, according to Joyce Nelson in her article CANDU DIPLOMACY, Canadian government officials have been pressuring Third World and Easternbloc countries to buy reactors.114

Unknown to most Canadians, Jean Chretien, who in the 1980s had been Federal Energy Minister, used his position as Prime Minister to put great pressure on Latin American and South American countries to buy our technology. One of the primary purposes of the Prime Minister's "Team Canada II" trip to South America in January 1995 was to convince countries to buy CANDU reactors.

One of the countries visited by the Prime Minister was Chile. Chile desires to join the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), one of the first steps towards the creation of the United- States-led Free Trade Area of the Americas. According to Raul Montenegro, president of Argentina's primary environmental group FUNAM, "NAFTA partners, mainly Canada, are convincing Chilean officials to buy a Candu reactor as the best way to become a NAFTA member."115

Financed through the World Bank, a CANDU reactor would increase Chile's foreign debt by $1.7 billion dollars.116

Raul Montenegro told the media,

In the early 1970s, Argentina was negotiating with Canada to build a CANDU nuclear reactor at Cordoba, Argentina. Because of a poorly negotiated contract and cost overruns, that reactor ended up costing Canadian taxpayers almost $200 million dollars118, but it had an even higher cost.

Members of the Argentine scientific community opposed the building of the reactor and were, "defining a policy in Argentina [against] the technology."119

However, a bloody military coup in Argentina on March 24, 1976, seriously altered the country's scientific community:

As a result of the military leaders' strong desire to acquire a nuclear reactor, with the possibility of using it to eventually build a nuclear bomb, the reactor was eventually built with assistance from Canada.

There are reports that CANDU nuclear reactors, designed, sold, and built under the direction of our government, are now being marketed to Third World countries with an unofficial promise that Canada will take back the nuclear waste from the reactors and store it in Canada.

Is that really true?

Is our government really selling nuclear reactors by promising to permanently store the nuclear waste here in Canada?

The citizens of Deep River Ontario in a public vote on September 21, 1995 approved plans to build a lowlevel nuclear waste disposal site there.121

At the Whiteshell Nuclear Research Establishment near Pinawa, Manitoba, a major underground radioactive waste storage site has been constructed. In February 1984, Dr. Bruce Goodwin of Whiteshell stated that "he would recommend that Canadian politicians turn northern Canada into a nuclear waste disposal site for the world."122

A Federal government document stated:

Joyce Nelson writes: Hugh Spence, spokesman for the Atomic Energy Control Board,(The AECB is the federal agency which regulates and supervises the nuclear industry in Canada) said that to his knowledge, there is not any law prohibiting the importation of high-level nuclear waste into Canada.125

"One article in the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement specifically says that Canada cannot reject nuclear waste from coming into the country," writes Don Kossick in Briarpatch Magazine.126

So far, Canada alone has produced 16,500 TONNES of nuclear waste in its 22 domestic, power-generating CANDU reactors in Ontario and New Brunswick.127

But, yearly, Canada is exporting over 16,000,000 kg of uranium,128 far more than any other country of the world, supplying almost a third of the world's uranium requirements.129  How much of that could eventually be returned to Canada for storage as nuclear waste is an unanswerable question.

Since the first atomic bomb, built with uranium from Canada,130 was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945, human beings have mined over 4.6 BILLION pounds of uranium,131 and built 442 commercial nuclear reactors, with 51 more in the planning stage or under construction.132

In the United States, in addition to the more than 35,000 TONNES of commercial waste already produced,133 the military has 55 TONNES of weapons-grade plutonium-239 left over from the cold war and many more TONNES still in their nuclear arsenal.134

I do not think anyone really knows for sure exactly how many TONNES of radioactive nuclear material already exists in this world of ours. But there is lots of it, hundreds of thousands of TONNES.

Of the private utility companies operating the 109 nuclear power reactors in the United States, thirty-three companies have contracted with the Mescalero Tribal Council in New Mexico to temporarily store nuclear waste on their reservation. Currently 30,000 TONNES of radioactive waste is stored there.

The Mescalero Tribal Council is, in turn, talking to the Meadow Lake Tribal Council in Northern Saskatchewan about using Canadian Cree reserve land as a permanent nuclear waste storage site. It is projected that, if the deal goes through, at least 218,000 TONNES of nuclear waste will be stored on native land in Northern Saskatchewan, for which the Meadow Lake Tribal Council would receive $1.7 billion dollars.135

This plan is of particular interest to the Utility Companies because a private deal between a United States Native Sovereign Nation and one in Canada would exempt the companies from complying with the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of the U.S. Department of Energy, allowing the companies to bypass government regulations regarding nuclear waste.136

With unemployment as high as 90 percent in the winter and between 30-40 percent in the summer, Native leaders see the plan as very appealing. Oneill Gladue, vice-chief of the Meadow Lake Tribal Council says that, as part of their 20 Year Economic Plan, storing the nuclear waste could bring in badly needed cash and also create jobs for their people. "I think we should be commended for doing this," he said.137

Native communities are very poor. It would be hard for the chief of any native community to say no to billions of dollars when he knows that his people could use the money. The members of the tribes often do not understand the consequences of what they are being asked to do. It seems to me an immoral economic abuse to put native people into economic hardship, as many tribes are, and then use their hardship to get them to agree to a deal that might not be in their long term best interests.

Many states of the United States have passed laws against the storage of nuclear waste in their states. Ontario has passed a law restricting the importation of nuclear material into the province. So far, neither the Canadian government nor the Saskatchewan government have passed any restrictions on importing nuclear waste. With both Saskatchewan and Canada poised to make billions of dollars yearly from the nuclear industry, it is unlikely that they will pass such laws any time soon. Even if they did, there is some question as to whether or not such a law would be binding under the North American Free Trade Agreement.

Nuclear waste has a half-life of 24,400 years. That is the length of time for half of the waste to decay. This means that, if stored, one half of the original amount will still exist 24,400 years from now and will still be life threatening. It will take another 24,400 years for half of that remaining half to decay, meaning one-quarter of the original amount will still remain and be life threatening after 48,800 years. One-eighth will remain after 73,000 years; one-sixteen after 98,000 years, and so on, to infinity. Throughout the entire process, the nuclear waste will be deadly. One millionth of one gram of plutonium, smaller than the eye can see, will kill a human being.138

And we have already produced how many thousands of TONNES?

Few really believe that nuclear waste can be stored safely forever; that is why no one wants it in their backyard, in their part of the world.

The nuclear industry tells us that they are figuring out a way to store their garbage for 24,400 years or more, that they will be able to do that safely.

24,400 years is longer than we can conceive, let alone plan for. We have no clue what will happen tomorrow, let alone 20,000 years from now.

Political structures, economics, and humanity change so fast that now, less than 50 years after the first atomic bomb and the advent of nuclear power, the former Soviet Union has nuclear reactors that it cannot afford to run but it does not have the money to shut them down. They have TONNES of nuclear waste, ill-protected, without the means to look after it.139

Only fifty years ago, the Soviet leaders were so sure their empire would never crumble, yet every empire does. No empire lasts 20,000 years, not even the nuclear power industry's empire, so who is going to look after the garbage?

Over time, corrosion and geology will radically change the earth's structure. Even if we bury our nuclear garbage deep within the earth, the earth will not remain the same. History has shown that.

Will that nuclear waste never leak into our water or rise up to the surface; will the containers we put it in never corrode or fade away?

The world's first nuclear core meltdown happened in Canada. On December 12, 1952, an explosion in a reactor at Chalk River, Ontario melted the core, releasing over one million gallons (4.5 million litres) of radioactive water.140

At the same complex, for nearly 20 years, more than 4,000 litres of radioactive water leaked EACH AND EVERY DAY out of a storage tank into the Ottawa River. Billions of gallons of radioactive waste were leaked, but even though Atomic Energy of Canada, Ltd., which regulates nuclear safety in Canada, knew about the leak, the information was kept secret.

According to a government report, more than 18 billion becquerels (Bq) of radioactivity was leaking EVERY DAY in 1994. Natural water has fewer than 10 Bq per litre, but the Chalk River leak had an estimated four million Bq per litre.

The leak was finally fixed in 1995 but radioactive waste from the leak is still moving through the soil and water table into the river, which supplies drinking water to many communities downstream from the reactor.141 (For more information, see note)

On May 21-22, 1977, because of design flaws, a nuclear reactor in Quebec "spewed 10 metric TONNES of heavy water containing 31,000 curies of tritium (radioactive Hydrogen) into the water of the St. Lawrence River."142

In Pickering Ontario, August 1, 1983, a pressure tube inside reactor II erupted without warning.143 The same unit had another accident when it lost its coolant on December 10, 1994, resulting in all four reactors at Pickering being shut down.144

A CANDU reactor has already caused Argentina's most serious nuclear accident145, and in New Brunswick and Ontario there are nuclear reactors built only 20 years ago that are now unsafe and are being operating at reduced capacity because of concerns that an accident might happen.146

If we cannot build nuclear reactors that are safe for more than 20 years, how do we think we can keep the garbage safe for 20,000?

I did not believe the churchmen when they told me they held the key to our well-being for eternity, why should I believe the scientists who tell me the same.

There are human beings now walking upon the earth who are willing to create a threat so great that it will threaten all future generations and all future civilizations, in exchange for a little money and a few jobs today.

I cannot help but wonder, if the nuclear waste problem is unsolved and unsolvable, why are we continuing to produce more?

Why don't we just stop?

Nuclear waste is cumulative. There will be more every year. There will be more every generation.

We have already produced too much; knowing that, we keep producing more?

Our gift to the future.

Does the fact that the nuclear industry is a multi-billion dollar industry justify what we are doing? Do money, jobs, and the economy justify threatening all generations, forever forward in time?

Or is it that we, deep down, believe that it will never be a problem because we will find another way to kill ourselves first?

About sixtyfive percent of the world's uranium is used by the United States and Europe, together accounting for four out of the five countries of the world which openly acknowledge that they possess nuclear weapons (United States, Soviet Union, China, Britain, and France).147

No doubt one of the primary reasons for the expansion of nuclear power over the past fifty years has been to supply the world with enough plutonium for the arsenal of nuclear weapons built during the cold war.148

During the twenty years from 1942 until 1962, uranium mined in Canada was used by the United States to produce an estimated 15,000 nuclear bombs.149

In 1991, the United States had 9,745 nuclear warheads and Russia had 11,159 warheads.150  Under a 1995 agreement, the United States and the Soviet Union agreed to reduce their arsenals to 3,500 warheads each. That is 7,000 nuclear warheads in those two countries alone151, and the nuclear forces in the other countries is also large.153

Canada is the world's leading producer and supplier of uranium154, and our uranium can be found in every nuclear arsenal in the world.

Of significance, Canadian CANDU reactors produce more and higher-quality plutonium in their nuclear waste than other reactors; therefore, it needs less processing than waste from other nuclear reactors to be used in weapons. Non-nuclear countries could develop nuclear weapons as a result of buying a Canadian CANDU reactor.155

The bomb dropped on Hiroshima was equivalent to 13,000 tons of TNT; nuclear weapons produced now are equivalent to 20 million tons of TNT, 1540 times more powerful.156  Yet, it only takes 8 to 10 KG of plutonium-239 to build a bomb the same size as the one dropped on Hiroshima,157 an amount easily produced by a CANDU reactor.

On May 18, 1974, India exploded a nuclear bomb fuelled with plutonium from a Canadian designed and built nuclear reactor.158  That reactor had been given as a gift to India's Department of Atomic Energy in a transfer of technology that cost Canadian taxpayers $9.5 million dollars.159

Other countries who buy our reactors have the capacity to do the same.

A 629-MWe CANDU reactor in South Korea, fuelled with Canadian uranium and run a 75 percent capacity, produces 413 KG of plutonium-239 a year, enough for 50 bombs.160  As of 1995, South Korea had 10 nuclear reactors with 13 more planned or under construction, including 3 more Canadian CANDU reactors.161

Pakistan's CANDU produces enough plutonium-239 for 10 bombs a year. India's first 3 Canadian nuclear reactors yearly produce enough for 34 bombs; they now have 10 reactors, at least nine of which were either Canadian-built or modelled after Canadian-designed technology. An additional 16 more reactors are in the planning stage or under construction.162

Romania just started up its first CANDU nuclear reactor and plans to buy at least one more, perhaps as many as four.163  China has agreed to buy two CANDU reactors for $3.5 billion dollars and is negotiating to buy an additional two more.164

By 1985, 40 countries had enough spent fuel to built three or more bombs, many of them had enough to build between 30-60 nuclear weapons. Even with international organizations and agreements to monitor the nuclear waste produced by reactors, if only one-tenth of one percent (.1%) of the nuclear waste was diverted worldwide, it would be enough to build one nuclear weapon every week. Currently, ten times that amount, one percent (1%) of nuclear waste goes unaccounted for.165

In addition to the five declared nuclear states, it is generally believed that Israel has over 100 nuclear warheads and a variety of missiles and aircraft capable of delivering them; and South Africa claimed to have built 6 bombs in the 1970s and 1980s but said that they dismantled all of them after 1989.

Argentina, Brazil, Pakistan, India, North Korea, and South Korea all have the capability to produce nuclear weapons. Most of them possess Canadian-designed-and-built, high-plutonium-producing, CANDU nuclear reactors.

Some believe that the best way to protect us from nuclear destruction is for Canada to take back all the nuclear waste produced from Canadian uranium and all the waste produced by Canadian reactors worldwide. Others believe that we could sell even more reactors and more uranium if we promised to permanently store the radioactive waste here in Canada, burying it in the Canadian Shield, on native reserves, or in the high arctic.

The United States Army, in a different type of nuclear test, intentionally contaminated an area of the Canadian high arctic with radioactive waste to study the effects of radiation in arctic conditions. Between 2,000 and 3,000 caribou died in the area and the waste, still up there, will continue to be deadly for a long, long time to come.166

Why don't we pause and think about this before we proceed any further?

Nothing is so urgent that we must rush forward now. An undug mine hurts no one; an unbuilt reactor hurts no one; and unproduced nuclear waste hurts no one. A delay in action will not hurt us but immediate action in this direction could.

Perhaps the direction we are going is not the direction we want to be going or even should be going.

Sooner or later, somewhere in the world, there is going to be another nuclear accident in a reactor (like Chalk River Ontario, Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, or worse); or sooner or later, somewhere in the world, another nuclear bomb will be used as a weapon of war; sooner or later, there is going to be another radioactive spill (like Key Lake Saskatchewan, or the St. Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers); sooner or later, somewhere in the world, nuclear waste will threaten humanity.

It is inevitable. Sooner or later.

History is our teacher.

On that day, will future generations remember that we were the ones who began the journey, that we had a choice and chose money over life?

One that day, the people of Saskatchewan, Ontario and New Brunswick, and all the people of Canada will bear some of the responsibility.

For, of all the people in the world, we -- you and I -- living where we do, have the democratic power to say "NO." We are the ones who have the power to say, "Leave the uranium in the ground. There it harms no one; we will mine no more." We are the ones who have the power to say, "We will sell no more reactors. We will help no one produce plutonium for weapons." We are the ones who have the power to say, "Shut down the reactors. We will produce no more waste." Indeed, we are the ones who have the power to say, "No. No more. The cost is too high."

No amount of money is worth it; no amount of tax revenue or jobs justifies the threat that we are creating.

Yet we have not said no, and I wonder why?

For, until we say no, with our silence, we are quietly saying yes and letting it happen.

We must be crazy.

Chapter 19

Why is it that, in our schools, we are taught some things and not others? Why is it that we are being told what we need to learn, while some of the things we most need to know about what is happening in our world are not being taught to us?

And why is it that, as we teach obedience to the rules and competition between individuals, we fail to teach other ways of living, other ways of interacting with human beings?

We do not teach non-violent conflict resolution: how to resolve our differences peacefully; how to communicate our needs and feelings honestly or clearly; we do not teach respect or how to listen for understanding when others speak.

The way to teach a child respect is by respecting the child. The way to teach a child to make wise choices is to teach them that their will is free and that they are responsible for the effects of their actions. The way to teach a child to be clear-thinking is to give them all the information they need to make wise choices and then to trust them enough to choose their own path.

As I listen to others, they often express surprise and appreciation that another is taking the time to really listen to them. Repeatedly, as I hear this, I realize that to be truly heard is a rare human experience. This makes me very sad.

As human beings, we are not listening to each other.

As we slow down enough to meet another at their deepest point of contemplation, we hear their thoughts, feelings, and the intent of their life. By listening to each other, we come to know one another.

Too often our conversations look more like two monologues facing each other. I see people sitting silently while another is talking but not hearing them. I see them sitting there thinking about what they are going to say next. As soon as there is a pause in the conversation they interrupt to say what is on their mind without giving the other person time to finish their thought or to express fully and clearly what they want to say. It is as if we only want to use each other as an audience while we talk.

I see people talking just to be talking, saying everything that comes to mind without considering whether or not what they are saying is true, valuable or even necessary to say.

I see people talking to avoid their discomfort with silence. I see people talking to hear themselves speak.

Yet in all our talking, what most needs to be said often goes unsaid because we are not really listening or giving each other enough time to say completely, uninterrupted, what we most need to say from within the depths of our being.

Everything we are, everything we will yet become, and everything we will create with our lives begins as a thought. For that reason we must hold each person's thought-space as sacred.

When I speak, I merely reiterate what I already know, rehashing my current world view and way of thinking, telling myself to myself over and over again. When I am talking I cannot know whether the one sitting silent opposite me is wiser than I am, or whether they could teach me something I need know.

We have a responsibility to share our knowledge and wisdom with one another. At every moment of life, we are either teaching or learning. I have found that I learn most when I really listen to another. We can only learn from each other if we each speak our truth and it is heard.

It is my responsibility to ensure that those with whom I sit are heard, that I give them sufficient time and respect for them to speak their truth and say what is on their mind. As I listen to their words or as I listen to their struggle to find the words, I hear their thoughts and the intent of their thoughts. As I listen to their thoughts, I come to know the nature of their being and the intent of their life. From this flows the manifestation of their being, and all else that they will choose to become.

In this way, I show my respect towards them.

There is a coffee shop in Portland, Oregon that is open late on weekdays and twenty-four hours on weekends, a place to hang out. They sell coffee, cheap, by the pitcher, and food. With chess and board games, video games and pool, there are lots of places to sit around, to talk. There is no thirty minute time limit per customer and only one strict rule -- treat each other with respect. It is a place where the rising generation are welcome.

Too often when the members of our rising generation gather, they are merely seen as part of a cost/benefit equation. Many coffee shops and restaurants refuse them service or ask them to leave because they are not spending enough money, or they are staying too long on cold afternoons, or they are scaring away other customers because of the way they look and the colour of their hair.

Too often, a person's worth is seen in economic terms.

We are judging the value of our youth by whether or not they have a job, the amount of money in their pockets, and whether or not they are contributing to our economy. As a result, we are raising up a generation of youth who are being made to feel unwelcomed in their own society.

Yet where can they gather and hang out where they do feel welcome and not seen merely as a profit or a loss?

More important, where can they gather to share their thoughts with one another, listen to one another, and contemplate the direction of their lives?

It seems that the moment our youth gather, adults get nervous and people get scared.

"They might get into trouble."

"What if there is violence?" "Drugs?"

If five adults walk down the street, it is a business meeting; if five kids walk down the street, it is a gang?

Why is it that as soon as three or more gather together, the police or social services, or somebody makes it their business to know and sees it as a problem -- To justify their job? -- interfering in what otherwise would be nothing more that three or more gathering together because they want to?

Until there is a problem, there is no problem.

As free-spaces, free-zones, are created, they never seem to last long because of pressure from the police or other organizations which really do not understand what is happening among our rising generation.

I hear the cry, "Oh we couldn't allow that! Who would be responsible if something happened?"

Each person would be. The rising ones would be responsible for their own actions; they are anyway.

It seems that the idea of a free-space, where the only rules are tolerance of all diversity and treat all beings with respect, is a hard concept to grasp among those whose programming has been, obedience to the rules, as their highest principle.

It seems that the idea of places where individuals can gather, have fun, and explore, "where we want to go from here," is threatening to those who want to continue heading the direction we are now going.

Let me ask you, where do we want to go from here?

It is time we thought about it. It is time to talk about it.

It is time to listen to one another.

Chapter 20


I am a free being.

As such, I expressly prohibit any being, group of beings, government, corporation, organization, or military from acting on my behalf, speaking in my name, or otherwise making decisions that affect me in any manner concerning any matter.

Further to this, if any being, group of beings, government, corporation, organization, or military believes themselves to have my authorization to act on my behalf, in my name, or in a way that affects me in any manner concerning any matter, I revoke it.

Moreover, my body and my mind are my own. I have not given up, nor do I give up, ownership and control of my body and mind. I will eat what I choose. I will take into my body what I choose. I may do with my body what I wish. I will think as I wish.

I am responsible for my life. I am responsible for my thoughts, my actions, and the effects of my being.

Insofar as the manifestation of my being harms no one and restricts not the free-will of another, I claim my right to live my life as I choose to create it.

I accept no obligation or debt of labour that I did not undertake nor authorize to be made in my name.

Moreover, I have the right to life. I have the right to that which sustains life. I owe no debt of money, labour, or obligation to any being, group of beings, government, corporation, organization, or military for my right to life or for that which I need to sustain life.

Chapter 21

It is no longer safe to walk in the sunshine or breathe our air. Our lakes are polluted; our water is in short supply or unfit to drink. Rain has enough acid in it to kill our trees and the plants we need for food. The forests are being cut as fast as the loggers can cut them, and species are disappearing by the thousands. Many people are hungry or have no place to sleep.

Something is seriously wrong.

All that we need to live is being desecrated for money.

That which remains has been taken from us and sold back to us to sustain our lives. We must labour to purchase life itself.

Each of us work for money to buy the things that we need to stay alive, to pay our rent and buy our food. In the process of "doing our jobs," we are putting all of our energy and all of our labour into supporting the vision and focus of greed, selling our birthright, our right to life, for a piece of bread and some lentil soup.

What we are doing is killing us.

There are human beings who are getting very rich, profiting from our collective death. We are using our collective labour to follow the vision of a few, for the benefit of a few to the detriment of many. Is the task of our culture merely to consume all that we can, like billions of maggots upon the planet, so that a few have much, while many suffer and we all slowly die?

We say we need money to live but money has become our greatest addiction. Our quest for money is destroying life itself.

We say those who slaughter human beings in war have committed crimes against humanity but the greatest crime against humanity is not the killing of innocent human beings, the greatest crime against humanity is the destruction of life itself.

Perhaps the most destructive words ever written are the words in the Christian Bible which say that God gave man, "DOMINION OVER the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth...[to] SUBDUE IT."167

With these words, human beings claimed superiority over all living things; with these words, we assumed that we were better than the rest of nature, separate from it, and that it was our right to do with nature and all living things, whatever we wanted to do. We claimed ownership of the world.

We have now taken that ownership of the world and turned it to profit, selling life itself for a piece of a tree with ink on it.

As resources become scarcer, they become more valuable (in dollars). The more valuable they become, the greater the push to exploit them for money. The faster we exploit them, the scarcer they become and the sooner they are gone.

What would happen if the human beings running our corporations had control over the last bit of air, water, food or forests? Would they not sell them to the highest bidder while watching many suffer and die?

If we are required to pay money for life, to eat or grow food, if we are required to pay money to sleep, drink, breathe, or go to the bathroom, then we must acquire money in order to live.

If we must labour for money in order to live, then those who control the money, control life itself.

All I see is the setting up of a one-world economic system in which those who will not support it with their labour, will get nothing, not even food, water, or a place to sleep. I see all the resources increasingly controlled by a few corporations, by a few men, with no guarantee for the right of a being to live.

Such is our focus, such is our thinking, such is our way of life.

We are intentionally driving the world into economic servitude, labouring and paying to be suppressed.

I cannot help but wonder if we will become hungry, angry people, fighting each other for morsels, while all around us, our abundance goes to benefit those who are quietly devastating our planet.

The Christians have taught for two thousand years that life on this planet would end, that the world would be destroyed.

Teaching that this world is an evil place, they believe that they cannot meet their god, go to heaven, or be saved until the world is destroyed, that the destruction of life must happen first before they can attain the highest hopes of their heart.

In a strange and twisted way, the teachings of the Christian faith look forward to the destruction of life on this planet as a necessary step to their salvation, that deliverance from evil can only come about in that way.

In their eyes, the end of the world is a good thing.

For two thousand years, they have told and retold the myth, focused on it, looked forward to it. Perhaps, nothing more than their focused thoughts have created the pathway to the manifestation of the possibility of our destruction. Perhaps nothing more than thinking about it, hoping for it, has made it real.

We can end the world if we want to badly enough. The choice is ours.

The spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dalai Lama, said, "We see with amazement the rise of a peril we didn't expect, the threat of self-destruction, which is all the harder to avert because it continually springs from our own persistent illusion."168

Life has become the enemy of life.

In the name of the Christian god, we "gave [ourselves] dominion over all things..." so that we could become killers of living things. We kill for money, kill that which stands in our way, that which offends us or makes us afraid; we kill for entertainment, and that which is inconvenient, killing people and species and all living things.

We go to war to defend the right to make a profit. We go to war, killing to defend the right to destroy life itself if there is money to be made.

Human beings -- our leaders, politicians and corporate executives -- have claimed but have never been given jurisdiction to decide if the rest of the world should live or die.

I cannot help but ask, since we know that human beings are willing to kill whole species of animals in the name of money, economics and greed, and commit genocide on races, tribes and people who stand in the way, why would we suppose that these same men and women would hold our life as any more sacred?

What would happen if we as a generation stood in the way; what would happen if we said no?

Would the human beings in our corporations and our governments use the courts, police, jails, and guns on us to preserve their order of things, to preserve their order of greed, like they have done in Burma, Chiapas Mexico, Argentina, and many other places?

We, as a species, choose the focus of our being and create the manifestation of our thoughts. We have gone to great effort to create this program that we are now living and supporting with our lives. Yet without ever taking the time to notice, we are creating our own worst fear.

The earth belongs to no corporation, no government, no individual. The earth belongs to every person on the earth -- not just some of them -- and to all living things, all life, that is upon the earth. The earth and the bounties of the earth -- its resources, the air, the water, the food that grows from it -- belong to all, equally, without regard for ability to pay.

No one has the right to destroy it, to kill us, to profit from it.

Chapter 22

If our fathers are going to kill us, why should we help them do it?

Why should we take things as they are and proceed along this path, why should we take the thoughts and focus created by previous generations and given to us by our fathers, and stay the course on which we are heading until it reaches its natural conclusion?

We need to do nothing different than we are doing today in order for us to destroy ourselves.

We wanted to know if we were powerful enough to destroy life itself. We now have the knowledge, do we still need the proof? Indeed, we are creating the end of life as we know it, unless we change our minds.

My whole being is crying out against what is happening.

Why are we doing this?

Will we, with our last breath, defend our right to do things the old way, even if it kills us.

Will we destroy life itself to prove that we are the most powerful consciousness on the planet, to prove that we can do whatever we want?

Do we not see the insanity of what we are doing?

How many beings must die, how much suffering must there be, before we stand and say, "Enough"?

Nothing matters more right now than the survival of life. Life itself is being threatened. We are the ones who are threatening life. That is the unifying picture; that is what ties us all together.

It would be a hollow victory to be the one who owned everything, the only one left alive, walking around in the garbage left behind, waiting to die.

I once saw a bumper-sticker which said, "Earth natives unite, planet before profit."

At some point we need to stop fighting each other, come together, and realize that something is seriously wrong here.

As we come face to face with our own extinction as a species, are we going to be rational enough to choose life over greed?

We have created a huge elaborate system in our minds, making up the rules as we went along. How long will we dance around the brink of our own destruction before we decide it is a dangerous game to play? We can decide that we are not going to play this game anymore. We can decide that it is time to change the game and change the rules.

We thought our way into this. Now it is time to set down our old way of thinking and think our way out of it. It is time to change course, change our minds, try something new.

We have some decisions to make.

I put forth a question: Make a decision, oh people of the earth, do we live or do we die?

Let us all agree to one idea, that life matters above all else, and go from there.

Let us get used to the idea that we are going to be around for many generations to come and then set about to do what needs to be done to make it so.

No god is going to come down and make us all good, and make the world a beautiful place to live, nor take us away from the mess that we have created. That is not going to happen. What we become will be the direct result of what we create. We will become what we make of ourselves.

This is where we stand in our collective spiritual evolution. We do it now, before we have gone too far to turn back, or not at all.

This is our task. We are the guardians of life.

One generation of focused, clear-seeing, clear-thinking human beings have the power to change the entire direction of humanity, if we have the will to do it.

Let this be the generation of decision.

Whatever it takes, we must hold as sacred all that sustains life and do what needs to be done to protect it, regardless of the economic consequences.

This is your call to awaken. Let this be the singular focus of our lives.

For now is the time and we are the ones.

Chapter 23

"All truth passes through three stages: first, it is
ridiculed; second, it is violently opposed; third, it is
accepted as being self-evident."

- Arthur Schopenhauer
(1788-1860 A.D.)

These are our times.

What we create with our lives really is a reflection of what we think about in our minds. We create what we most desire, what we focus on, and we always manifest our choice, whether we realize it or not.

How much time does it take to change our minds?

Throughout history, dominant schools of thought, civilizations, values, beliefs, and ways of doing things have come and gone. We possess the ability to dismantle and redesign our self-created structures and systems, our selfcreated values and beliefs. As simply and as quickly as we change our minds, we possess the ability to create a whole new school of thought.

Let us turn the future to the dismantling of the obstacles we have constructed and divert our energy towards the continuation of human life and the expansion of human consciousness.

I am asking for no less than a complete shift of our species' values and focus, a deeply-rooted shift within us, with all of us working for the good of all, in the name of free-will.

I am advocating an examination of our thoughts and intentions, and a complete redesigning of our lives, what we are doing, and how we are doing it. I am suggesting that we look at all that we have created and its effects, that nothing be excluded from examination. I am proposing that we reconstruct the core foundation of our civilization and the basis upon which we make our decisions.

What we have done, what we possess, what we have created, matters less than who we are and what we will choose to become. Instead of living the way history and society have told us to live, we must follow our most burning, pressing task.

As we stand up to say "no" to the way we have been living, it can be a loud no, a violent no, a no of anger; or it can be an agreed no, as we, one by one, being by being, decide in our heart to change the direction we are heading and, quietly, collectively, say no, together as a generation.

Indeed, I am hopeful, for I know we never intentionally make bad decisions; we all choose as wisely as we can, according to what we see, know and understand.

I know that some fear change; some strive to keep everything the same, fearing the unknowability of the future, when change is our only constant. We cannot know the impact that our lives will have on future generations. All we can do is live our lives in the best way possible, according to the effects we know about and see, making sure that we do not send forward into time destruction that we knew about and foresaw, but which we did not correct or avoid.

The choices we have made in the past are not the best way nor the last way.

As we question our assumptions, reason together in wisdom, and remove the obstacles, we will create the pathway to get to where we are going, where we most need to go. We are a generation asking the questions, finding the answers, choosing the way. If we change our way of thinking, it is because we want to.

There are moments in history, of which this is one, that affect the entire direction of human evolution. Many people, looking around them, see a need for change, want change and are waiting for it. The people of this planet, of this generation, are beginning to realize and starting to understand that we are the ones who are going to create it.

Indeed, many are realizing that now is the time. There is a new consciousness rising.

We each have but one lifetime to learn the art of living and to live the life we create. No one has a monopoly on wisdom and life has no owners manual; we are all going through this journey of discovery together for the first time.

If we shift our highest values from obedience to respect, from greed to life, respecting each other and life itself, we can create a community whose existence is for the direct benefit of humankind -- one and all -- and accept responsibility for the effects of our choices.

Let us reason together wisely, in the name of free-will, for the good of all beings, for the continuation of life. We know the problems well enough, and we know what needs to be done. We have this one chance, let us do it.

Just imagine the possibilities.

From the furthest reaches of our minds, let us create the most far reaching possibilities, then find a way to get there. Logic and knowledge are not enough. With human feelings and intuition, we can let imagination and common sense prevail, bringing together our wisdom with our technology.

If we let our imaginations run free, everything is possible and the choice is ours. We can do anything we set our minds to do. Our focused thoughts, enacted through the conscious manifestation of free-will are all that is needed for the transformation of all beings and life upon this planet.

There is no government, corporation, or individual which will be able to stand against the tide of what is coming; for we are creating (R)Evolution: an evolution of consciousness, a quiet revolution of spirit.

I will do my part. I am asking you to do yours.

Let us stand together for life.

Chapter 24

We have a huge task in front of us. So where do we begin?

We begin by realizing that we have a huge task in front of us and that no one has all the answers or the complete picture. We begin by sharing with one another what we know, by listening to one another. We begin by realizing that we do a great disservice to ourselves when we only surround ourselves with people who agree with us or who share our point of view. We begin by examining everything and all possibilities, deciding what needs to be done as wisely as we can, then doing it.

It is going to take a lot of work and many people.

We have the power to do this.

We acquire the power to do this the moment we realize that we have the power to do it. We will do what we do because we can.

During World War II the underground sprang into being because individuals looked around them at what was happening and, realizing that something was not right, set about to do what they knew they had to do. It was not an organization; it was simply individuals following their innermost feelings.

Let us create a truly free society, make our own choices and do what needs to be done.

Whatever it takes.

Canada may be the only place on the planet where real, genuine, lasting change can take root and grow. We are generally well educated; we have an abundance of wealth and resources; we are not over-populated; we have space to grow food, and our environment is not yet beyond repair; internationally, we are seen as peaceful people, well-respected, and our rising generation is the strongest we have ever raised. We can lead the way.

If we come together as a generation and do what needs to be done, we can turn Canada around and lead the world in a new direction. Everyone knows the example of the United States is not the way.

If we shift our focus and change our priorities, if we use our knowledge, infrastructure, and resources wisely, we can do it.

We can create what we need for our own evolution and survival. There is a way out of the mess we are in, and we have the power to create it.

We will need to hold our focus and not sell out. We will need to stay on course even when opposition rises -- and it will -- but death is the great equalizer and, in time, those in power will die and we will take the helm. Until then, we must do all that we can and prepare ourselves, learning and thinking -- always mindful of what we are thinking about -- remembering that the focus of our thoughts sets our direction and the manifestation of our lives, remembering that the possibilities are as boundless as thought itself.

Where do we begin? Food.

The United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS states that everyone has a "fundamental be free from hunger."169

Food is a basic human right. We must put food first, above all else. There is no reason why there should be a single hungry person in our country. Everyone has the right to eat.

We need to make sure everyone has a way to be fed. If working is a requirement for eating, we cannot allow anyone to go unemployed. If there is unemployment, then food must be free.


We can no longer tell people, "If you don't work, you cannot eat," as we lay people off by the thousands. If one cannot find work, we cannot allow them to starve.

Let us stop destroying food surpluses to keep prices high and stop throwing away tonnes of food from grocery stores because it cannot be sold. Let us set up free food kitchens everywhere for anyone who is hungry and provide food and shelter for anyone in need.

The greatest good that we can do is to ensure that all are fed. By feeding another, we give them what they need to live another day of life.

With no jobs to be found, no Unemployment Insurance, no Welfare, and no land on which to grow food, people fear that they will have nothing to eat.

When our fear of not having anything to eat is gone, we have the freedom to make choices, the freedom to choose to do something different.

In the history of humanity, times of transition have been sidetracked and revolutions have failed because of hunger. As we set about to change the direction and focus of our species, there will be a time of transition, an unsettled time when peoples lives will seem to be in upheaval. We need to make sure that during that period, those without jobs or those affected by the profound changes of our time, do not suffer or go hungry as a result. If we grow enough food to make sure that all are fed, we will be able to do everything else that is required.

We need to be able to say, "We will feed you. Do what matters most."

In order to do this, we need to increase food production and increase the amount of land used for food production.

We must begin a massive food growing program, growing as much as we can, more than we need, and storing the surplus -- using what we need, sharing what we have and storing the rest.

Those who are unemployed can help to grow food for others, in exchange for their own food and shelter. As far as possible, we should grow food in each area for the people of that area, eating what is produced locally.

We will also need to support our food growers, making sure that their needs are met so they can continue growing food for the rest of us.

Historically, in support of freedom of religion, all church land has been tax free. Perhaps, in support of our right to life and food, all land used to grow food should be tax free. No doubt this would reduce land tax revenue but would instantly increase the amount of food being grown.

We need to grow as much food as we can, enough for Canada and beyond, using our knowledge of science and our technology. We could begin teaching food science, gardening, in our schools. Once all Canadians are fed, we could begin sharing our surplus with others.

We could then begin sharing our knowledge and technology with other countries to help increase their food production as well. Would not this be a better form of foreign aid than loans for destructive megaprojects? We could use our overseas humanitarian aid programs to help increase their production of food for local consumption, rather than for export. For it is not enough for us to have food to eat, if others are hungry.171

We could simplify our diet so that land in Third World countries is used to feed the local population. Do we really need bananas in January so badly that we will let someone starve? We could reduce our meat consumption and make sure that our food exports are feeding hungry human beings. We could ensure that people in all countries are fed before we take food away from them; we could stop using food as a commodity of corporate profit and control, stop using hunger as a weapon of war.

Before anything else can be done, we have a planet to feed. All human beings have the right to food; let us feed everyone, feed all.

Then do all else that needs to be done.

Chapter 25
At first our quest was to understand nature; then we set about to harness it for our benefit; finally, we began to control it in an attempt to make nature obey our will, to make nature conform to our wishes. Now we see the destruction of nature as our right. We live as if there is an acceptable level of destruction, contamination and death.

What started out as a quest to make life easier has become our obsession to make life an efficient producing-consuming-wealth- accumulating machine, sacrificing what matters most for inanimate objects.

Sometimes I believe that we, as human beings, in a quest to prove our supremacy over life, think that if we cannot control nature, we will destroy it - Obey or be killed!

Growth and economic renewal rely on continued exploitation of an almost exhausted planet. Nature cannot assimilate the damage as fast as we are creating it.

We can never return to our old belief that resources are limitless and that the planet has an infinite capacity to support our wastefulness.

Is it too much to ask that we use our resources in such a way that we can keep going, provide for the long term, meeting the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs?173

I know that many people are willing to make sacrifices if they know that their sacrifices are going to create a greater good, but many have become disillusioned with making sacrifices at the insistence of those who call themselves our leaders, when they see the corruption, abuse and destruction that is resulting and continuing.

Nevertheless, we need to walk gently upon the earth and among our fellow beings, doing all that we do with a mind towards creating the least amount of harm to the planet and one another.

As we decide which resources to use, how much to use and the reasons why, let us do so according to need and the benefits created, using them only if there is no better way, and only as much as is truly necessary.

Let us determine the wisdom of using our resources by the number of people who benefit from what we do and the lifespan of what we are using them for. Comparatively, it makes more sense to cut a tree to build a house that will provide shelter for many over forty or fifty years than to cut a tree for newsprint to tell us we can save five cents on a tube of toothpaste at the grocery story and which is thrown away the next day. Always, in our every decision, we must ask, is there a better way or a less destructive way.

We are in the midst of an environmental crisis the dimensions of which we are only beginning to understand and many are choosing to ignore. We do not yet know the full effect of what we are doing.

Have you noticed the weather changing?

Many tell me that they burn faster in the sun than they used to and that the sun has a more intense glare than before. Many tell me that our rainfall and snowfall patterns are changing.

I cannot help but wonder that we created the reason why.

David Israelson in his book SILENT EARTH wrote,

We need to look at, not only our collective actions, but also our individual ways of living. We seem to be quite selective in what we focus on and what we are willing to change in our lives. Yet, the sum of small acts individually add up to large effects globally.

I once heard a non-smoker complain that a smoker was polluting her air, then she got into her gasoline-powered car to drive the two blocks to her house; the smoker, who walks everywhere he goes, told me, "Her car pollutes our air more than my cigarettes do. When she quits driving, I will quit smoking."

I can just imagine it, in huge black letters across every car:

Every year, human beings produce over 50 million new vehicles,176  Worldwide, we have almost one billion in existence. Where once every house had a garden to grow food, now there is a garage.

I have noticed that, in our fear of cancer and our zeal to get people to quit smoking, we never talk about giving up our automobiles.

An American chemist named William Moomaw says "The burning of fossil fuels is responsible for most of the carbon entering the atmosphere, some 5.9 billion tons each year," and that there has been "a 25 percent increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution," with more than half of this increase since 1958.177

Many scientists now think...that carbon dioxide in the atmosphere will be double its natural level by the year 2030, when the children of the 1990s reach middle age.178  I fear for the day, if it ever comes, when our automobiles become personal atmospheric chambers, where drivers go to service stations to fill up with gasoline and oxygen, leaving those outside struggling to survive. Already, in Mexico City and Tokyo there are oxygen booths where individuals can go, pay money and buy oxygen to breathe.

The greenhouse effect is a real threat that could be minimized if we cut the use of fossil fuels drastically in a short time -- cutting them in half by 2020 -- replacing coal and oil with methanol, natural gas and other alternative fuels which produce less carbon dioxide, while working to develop other forms of transportation. Yet, the reluctance of governments to act, the resistance and the misleading proposals that come from industries, and the continued disbelief in the greenhouse effect are perhaps the most hazardous of all to our health.179

No doubt if we used all the resources, energy, and wealth needed to produce and maintain our cars, we could produce the most amazing mass transit system the world has ever seen, getting everyone everywhere they want to go, anytime, and with less air pollution or cancer. In the meantime, I do not see many people walking, riding the bus or using bicycles.

In our quest to understand life, many children grow up in cities of concrete with very few living things around them: some trees, grass, dogs, cats, humans, a few birds. That's about it.

Relative to how many living things there are, most of what they know about living things, they learn on television.

Many grow up disconnected from the source of life; milk comes in a bottle, food from the store, hamburger from MacDonald's. Most children have never grown food in a garden, many have never been on a farm or out of their city; they have never seen an animal born or killed.

The more removed we are from the earth, from the process of seeking and growing what we need, the easier it is for us to see the earth in terms of ones and zeros, counting everything, seeing everything as a number, the chief of which is the dollar. How much does life cost? How much can we sell it for?

In the process of forgetting that the earth is not an object to be counted or sold, we have forgotten that everything we have and everything we need comes from the earth, that earth is the source of life itself.

As a species we are forgetting where life comes from, forgetting that the earth sustains all life, forgetting...

...and destroying.

We talk a lot about job creation. We could create many jobs, a whole industry, and a new field of study in our universities, in environmental ecosystem restoration. Funded by resource taxation and legal requirements for corporations to bear the cost for what they have created. We could begin repairing the damage to our planet -- thousands of people could be employed -- and, instead of having a military, we could create an Environmental Service Corp, with individuals serving to protect and restore the earth.180

I wonder how quickly we can start replanting the planet, cleaning the air, the water, how quickly we can reverse our course of destruction.

We have taken too much for granted.

Chapter 26

Every physical thing we create, everything we manufacture, everything we use and consume comes from the earth. Science has shown that we cannot produce something out of nothing. Matter is a constant. If we take it and use it, it came from somewhere; and when we are done with it, it continues to exist, somewhere.

I once bought some cookies. They came in a box made of thin cardboard, wrapped in clear plastic; inside was a plastic tray holding twelve cookies, each one individually wrapped. Eating twelve cookies produced more garbage than food.

How convenient?

Another time, I went into a "health food" restaurant to buy something to eat. Upon ordering, they asked me if I was going to eat there or take it out. If I was going to eat it there, they would put the food on a paper plate and give me a plastic fork, but if I was going to take it with me, they would put it in a styrofoam container. What a choice: cut down a tree for a plate and eat with a plastic fork made from oil -- no doubt cheaper than paying someone to wash dishes -- or use styrofoam which, when made, destroys the ozone layer and which never breaks down or decomposes back to soil; either way, materials that harm the earth and fill our garbage dumps with a lot of garbage, just to eat ONE meal -- and in a health food store. I walked out.

The packaging industry is a huge, multi-million dollar industry. We wrap and wrap and over-package everything; each layer of wrapping costing money, making money for someone.

David Israelson, in his book SILENT EARTH wrote:

We want every thing fast, now, convenient; we do not want to have to wait for anything; we do not want to take the time to have it measured, or carry our own containers, or wash plates, or hire someone to do it. Instead we buy pre-packaged food and use disposable containers -- a different styrofoam cup every time we have a cup of coffee; a different paper plate for every sandwich -- conveniently throwing them away after we are done. Once it is in the garbage can, we do not have to think about it again.

Japan is home to 126 million people.182 There, people use "disposable" wood chopsticks to eat with, cutting thousands of acres of rainforest -- hundreds of thousands of trees -- every year, for eating utensils that are used only ONCE then thrown away. No need to reuse them; just put them in the garbage and get another pair next time.

In seems we are too busy to consider the effect of what we are doing, in too big of a hurry to think about the effect that eight billion people, each eating one "convenient" meal, have upon the earth.

Fast food? At what price?

In Canada, we produce 25 million TONNES of solid waste a year183 -- almost a TONNE of garbage per person184 -- and the amount that we throw away is increasing.185

We must live with the effects of our decisions, and we are responsible for the garbage we create. So what are we doing with our garbage?

Mostly, burying it in the ground.

Canada has 10,000 garbage dumps.186

In Ontario, more than 40,000 hectares of land are used for an estimated 600 active dump sites, and that doesn't count the 2,500 that have already been closed.187

In British Columbia, by the year 2000, sixty percent of the province's garbage dumps will be filled to capacity,188 and in Alberta, garbage is a bigger industry than agriculture or forestry, only tourism and oil are bigger.189

San Francisco Bay was reduced to half its original size because so much garbage was dumped into it. When the people of San Francisco, in 1970, decided to stop, they began shipping their garbage to the desert, 375 miles away.190

Portland, Oregon -- an average North American city -- every day produces between 30,000 and 75,000 TONNES of garbage. That garbage is trucked by gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles to a large regional land-fill 800 miles away.

Garbage is a big industry.

Over the past 25 years, the North American garbage industry has thrived, growing by 24% every year. Today, 11 large multinational waste management corporations control 30% of the industry.191

When it comes to garbage, these companies like lots of garbage. The more garbage we produce, the more money they make. If we produce less, they make less.192

Moreover, new technologies to get rid of our garbage have led us to believe that everything is under control so we continue to produce more. Our ability to get rid of garbage more efficiently means we continue to create it more efficiently.193

Fiftyfive percent of all our solid waste comes from industry, commercial operations, and institutions.194 Yet, we continue to encourage industrialization, believing that increased industrialization is good for the economy and creates jobs -- actually, what industrialization creates is a lot of garbage.

One reason our industries produce too much waste is that our economy and our economic policies encourage it.

We, as taxpayers, pay the cost of garbage disposal in our communities, basically paying to get rid of the waste that industry produces. Every time disposable, "convenient", use-it-once-then-throw-it-away consumer products are manufactured, the job of disposing of the left-over materials from the discarded products is passed on to the community, at our expense, with no direct cost to the producers and consumers of the products.195

This means that when a city truck picks up garbage from the curbside, we are paying the costs, instead of the company who manufactured the wastes paying them. Moreover, as our land-fills suddenly reach their limits, we are footing the bill to build new ones.196

In an effort to reduce the amount of waste that we are sending to our garbage dumps and land-fills, the human beings in our governments have encouraged "waste diversion". Diversion means recycling and reusing. Diversion means that, rather than disposing of valuable materials like corrugated cardboard, newsprint, magazines, metals and glass, we remove them from our garbage. By removing them from our garbage, we ensure that they continue to be used as long as the material is still usable. It reduces the amount going to our land-fills and reduces unnecessary waste of our resources.197

However, the waste management companies have economic reasons to treat most of the material they collect as garbage. By definition, waste materials (garbage) cannot be returned to the economy, while recyclable materials can. Even though recyclable materials have positive economic and material value, they require more handling. As a result, the profit margins are higher for garbage than for recyclable materials, so most of these companies discard recyclable materials as waste.198

For the sake of money and profit, recyclable materials are often thrown out in the garbage. For the sake of money, there is more emphasis on the collection of garbage than there is on getting collected materials to where they would be of greatest use.

The recycling officer for the city of Vancouver, British Columbia told me that many of the ships arriving in Vancouver, loaded with cars, electronic goods, and consumer products from Asia, return loaded with garbage and material that could have been recycled. It is sent to Asia to be burned because environmental laws are less strict there. Out of sight, out of mind, but not without effect.

There is an old chinese proverb which says, "When a butterfly flaps its wings in the Himalayan Mountains, soon there will be a typhoon in Beijing."

Everything is connected: burning our garbage in Asia, has its effect here, and what we buy in our stores, what we eat, what we use, consumer and throw away, also has its effect throughout the world. By re-using and recycling, we minimize the impact our lives have upon this third planet from the sun.

Some cities have curb-side recycling, picking up recyclable materials in the same way that most cities pick up garbage to take to the garbage dump. The cities that do this have drastically reduced the amount of garbage going to their land-fills. Some cities even make a profit from their recycling operations.

But in too many places, we have not made recycling easy to do. Many cities have too few places to deposit recyclable materials or require people to drive miles to industrial areas on the edge of town, just to get rid of their recyclable garbage. Most people do not take the time or cannot be bothered. If it is not easy to recycle, we do not do it.199

Even though we pride ourselves on using materials that can be recycled -- even feel good about it -- how many of us then throw them away into the garbage because that is easier than making the effort to get them where they need to go?

Not only have we not made recycling easy to do, economically we have never made large-scale recycling profitable.

As a result, too few recycling companies exist, and there are too few facilities to process the material once it is collected. If we were to return everything that could be recycled for processing, the companies that exist could not handle the volume. Currently, recycling companies turn a lot away, accepting only those materials that they are capable of handling. Much of the material that could be recycled ends up as garbage.

Even if the facilities and systems were in place to divert all the reusable and recyclable materials that we could, there are natural upper limits as to how much waste can actually be diverted by recycling. We would still have a lot of garbage to dispose of.200

The real problem is that diversion programs do not reduce the amount of resources that we are consuming in the first place, nor the amount of garbage that results.201

Since 1950 the world's people have consumed goods and services equal to that consumed by all previous generations of people combined.202  Continual economic growth means ever-increasing consumption, perpetually increasing the amount of resources that we are using.

Recycling has become a convenient alternative to reducing our rate of consumption. By saying that we are recycling, we seem to give ourselves an excuse to continue consuming too much.

Moreover, we encourage industry's production of waste through publicly-funded recycling programs. Now, we are not only getting rid of the garbage that industry produces, we are also paying the cost to recover materials that are of value to industry.

However, the value of recyclable materials is increased by the handling costs of collecting, sorting, baling and transporting them back to the industries which use them. These costs are all paid by local taxpayers. So when local governments try to sell the materials collected, the human beings running our industries drive a hard bargain, saying it is "not economical" for manufacturers to use recycled materials.203

This is a problem of our own creation. The human beings running our governments often use our natural resources as a carrot to lure investment. They provide generous tax breaks and subsidies to industry which reduce the costs of raw materials, energy, and transportation. As a result, virgin raw materials are made available to industry at costs which are cheaper than their real value.

Our manufacturing industries are making lots of money using virgin raw materials. Secondary (recycled) materials cannot compete.204  Our economic system, as we currently have it set up, makes it is cheaper (in dollars) to exploit the resources of the planet and to throw away what we have already produced than to reuse the materials that we already have.

Not surprisingly, all of this financial assistance has accelerated the rate at which raw materials and energy are being used, as well as the rate at which disposable products are produced and discarded.205

Industries have been able to produce inexpensive throw-aways because the true cost of raw materials, energy and the disposal of the product waste are not included in the prices of the products themselves. The true costs of all these aspects of production have been "externalized" by industry. They have been passed on to the taxpayer.206

This is why disposable products are less expensive.

When recycling and disposal costs are not figured into the price that a company sets for a product, the company whose product has the most externalized costs is the most profitable and the cheapest to buy.

However, the more disposable products that are on the market, the more garbage we have to deal with and the more tax dollars it takes to dispose of them.207  The company's profit becomes our cost.

It is no wonder that our community waste management programs -- local garbage and recycling programs -- are becoming more expensive and failing to reduce the amount of garbage produced. The rising number of disposable products on the market with significantly "externalized" costs attached could make it no other way.208

So, multinational corporations are being subsidized with our tax dollars to extract our natural resources and raw materials, using cheap electricity. They leave environmental messes behind them for us to clean up, along with the bill. Manufacturers then produce "cheap, convenient" disposal products, leaving us to dispose of them, along with the bill.

These multinational corporations make billions of dollars in profit and pay virtually no taxes.

No wonder we cannot afford to run our country, or pay for our social programs, health and education, or take care of one another. We are paying people money so they can make money and then we are paying to clean up the mess they leave behind.

We need to challenge our old way of doing things which undervalue our resources and raw materials, underestimate the cost of waste disposal and the recycling of materials, and which externalize environmental costs outside of industry's cost of doing business.209

There can be no solution to either the environmental impact of industry or the garbage created by product manufacturers until the human beings creating the problems are held accountable for the effects of what they do.

If the price of goods accurately reflected the impact that producing those goods had upon the earth, including the real costs of raw materials and the environmental impact of resource extraction, if the human beings running corporations had to bear the cost for the damage they cause to our environment, they would destroy less and the damage already done would soon be repaired.

If the price of goods included the cost of disposing of the garbage those products produce, corporate executives would have a reason to reduce the amount of packaging and waste their products produce.

If recycling costs were added to the price of goods to be recycled, we would soon be able to build more recycling facilities, reuse what we have already produced and reduce the need to constantly be taking more raw material from the earth.

If the prices at the cash register reflected the real cost of the products, instead of just the cost of manufacturing them, then we would have a better idea of the impact those products are having upon our lives. We could then decide whether or not they are worth it.

Moreover, the human beings running our corporations would be economically accountable for resource and waste management, for the effects of their actions. They would have an incentive to reuse materials, produce less waste, and be less environmentally destructive. In short, they would have reason to do things in a wiser, better way.210

It is very simple: Corporations exist to make money, that is the language they speak. If corporations lose money because of the way they are doing things, they will soon change. If we, in choosing what to buy or in the legal economic structures that we create, make it so that corporations either act responsibly or they lose money, they will act responsibly so as to not lose money.

Until then, they will continue as before.
For more information about INDUSTRY STEWARDSHIP AND THE POLLUTER-PAYS PRINCIPLE, see Appendix 3)

However, we, too, need to make all of our choices mindful of the effects that we are creating.

As we envision worldwide corporate markets with everyone as a consumer, imagine 8 billion people all wanting and using what the average Canadian family has and takes for granted, imagine the toll that will place upon the earth and the amount of garbage that will be created.

If we think about what we buy, what it is made of, how it is made and by whom; if we consider the packaging or container it is in, what material it is made of, the impact its manufacturing has had on the environment and what will happen to it once we are done with it; then we will make better choices, every moment, in our every action. We will choose more wisely what we buy, where we buy, and whether or not we want to buy it, mindful of what we are consuming, using and throwing away.

Individually, it is a small thing but together it has large effect.

Chapter 27

Democracy, from the Greek word Demokratia, meaning people rule; government by the people, government by the governed, rule by the ruled.211

The idea was born because individuals wanted to control their own destiny and decide how their countries and communities should be run. It came out of a human desire to be free and to not live under the oppressive leadership to which they had been subjected.

They saw democracy as the highest form of freedom and the highest manifestation of free-will that they could conceive of, the right to make their own choices and set their own direction.

We did not successfully create a civilization based upon freewill though, even though we thought we had, because the oppressors of that former time were eventually replaced by the oppressors now before us. Today, the burden of government is being borne upon the backs of its people, again, still.

Our government system, instead of being a true democracy, with control of our destiny in our own hands, has become the power of a few over many -- precisely what the idea of democracy was originally intended to replace.

There are some in government really trying to effect positive change, but all too often they cannot do much because of the system of government that we have created.

As it now stands, those that we elect to represent us in our government cannot even vote the way they want to vote in our parliament. We have a party system where our elected representatives must vote according to the wishes of their party leaders. If they vote according to their conscience or according to the wishes of the people who elected them, but contrary to their party's position, they are usually punished in some way.

The longest-serving member of parliament, Warren Allmand, was removed as chairman of the Judicial Committee after voting against a bill designed to remove the social programs he had spent his entire career building up.212

Three Liberal Members of parliament who voted against another bill were removed from their Commons committees by the Prime Minister as punishment.213

After nine Liberal Members of parliament voted against the final reading of a major bill sponsored by the government, the Prime Minister warned Liberal Members of Parliament that if they broke ranks with the party to vote according to conscience or the desires of their constituents, that they might not be nominated or allowed to run in the next election.214  Do we not have the right to choose who we elect to represent us?

Liberal Whip Donald Boudria said, "Liberal Members of Pariament are elected under the party's banner so when it comes to important party measures, they must toe the line or face the consequences."215

Usually if a party member opposes a bill, instead of voting against it and facing possible punishment for voting as they feel they should, our elected Members of Parliament will simply avoid the issue by being absent for the vote.

Our elected representatives, those whose job it is to reflect our views and wishes in parliament, cannot vote according to what they feel is best.

So much for democracy.

If we choose to continue with an elected representational system of government, we should choose the wisest among us to represent our communities without any party affiliation. They should be able to vote according to what they feel is best for those they represent and for our country.

The rules of Parliament are such that if a bill is introduced by the government and it is defeated, the government falls and a new election must be held. Therefore, if the majority party wants to stay in power, all the bills introduced by them must pass. For this reason, they exert a lot of political pressure on their Members of Parliament to vote the way the party wants them to vote. This seems silly to me. Not every bill is a good bill. Not every bill deserves to pass.

Our elected representatives should use their own judgement to decide whether or not a bill should pass, then vote accordingly. If a bill passes, it passes; if it is defeated, it is defeated. After the vote, our elected representatives should then go on to the next item of business. Failing to pass a bill should not mean the government falls; nor should our elected representatives vote differently than they might otherwise vote because of party affiliation or because a bill might not pass. Certainly, they should not have to vote the way they are told to vote and no one should be punished for voting as they see best.

We need good, moral men and women leading us, good moral men and women who will work for the good of all. Yet, there are many qualified people among us who do not run for political office because they realize that our system of government does not truly represent the citizens of this country, nor their wishes or needs.

We need to consider whether or not it is time to completely redesign our government system. Perhaps we no longer need to elect others to speak for us. Perhaps we no longer need to elect others to make decisions on our behalf.

Our system of direct elected representation was created almost one hundred and fifty years ago when communication was difficult, travel was slow, and the distances which separated us were great. We elected individuals to travel the great distances across our land, to reason together in wisdom on our behalf, and to make decisions that would be for the good of all.

It was a system of government designed to meet a need which no longer exists. Often the way we do something long outlives the reason why we are doing it that way. Yet we continue doing it the same way, thinking that is the way it needs to be done, the way it has always been done, and the way it is supposed to be done.

Times change, our needs change and the way we do things also need to change.

Now we have technology. We can travel quickly, communicate instantly, and we know what is happening in other parts of our country and the world.

What would happen if we used that technology to redesign the way we run our country?

Direct democracy, where every person has a vote, a say in the running of our country, is now as near as our touch-tone phones, our computer modems, and our will to make it happen.

It is possible.

Any person could put forth a question and if, say five percent of the population agreed that it was a good question or idea, it could be put to a vote. At the local, provincial, regional and national level, questions would come forth. Once a week we could pick up our phones or turn on our computers, and decide what needed to be decided. Fifteen minutes a week and we could have direct control over our lives and our destiny, instead of choosing once every four years someone to decide for us, someone who cannot even vote the way we want them to.

It would be the creation of true democracy, where everyone would have a say. We would save millions of dollars that we now spend on keeping our elected leaders in office, millions of dollars we now spend for them to make choices that most of us do not approve of. We could still keep government departments -- our employees -- whose job it would be to carry out our decisions in the same way that they now carry out the decisions of our parliament and elected representatives.

The corruption would end; our lack of control over our country and lives would end; and we -- you and I -- would decide what matters most and make the decisions to bring it into being.

Maritime Telephone and Telegraph, the telephone company in the Maritime provinces, has already developed a program for direct telephone voting. They say that the entire system could be set up for a one-time cost of $2 million dollars -- a small amount compared to the amount our government wastes every year.216

We could balance our budgets, decide how to spend our tax money, choose when or if our military goes to war, design government and social programs for the benefit of all, and end corporate influence over the decisions of our leaders. We could even create a lottery to pay our national debt, if we wanted to.

Sweden and Switzerland already have a form of direct democracy, and England has experimented with the idea.217  The state of Oregon in the United States has a direct referendum process which is binding upon its government, and in British Columbia, there is a new political party which is advocating the establishment of direct democracy as their only political objective.218

In a true democracy, the people of any self-defined jurisdiction can decide anything, and their decision is the way it is to be, legally binding upon the people of that jurisdiction, upon their leaders, and their government.

Yet, as it now stands, the men and women running our governments tell us that a vote of the people is NOT binding upon them. As it now stands, if a community, province or our country puts forth a question for people to consider and vote upon -- a referendum or a plebiscite -- the results of the vote are not legally binding upon our government. If those who are running our government choose to ignore the results of the vote or to act in direct opposition to the results, they have (or at least claim to have) that right.

Who has the power to say no to whom?

We call this a democracy, people rule. Why can we not put forth any question for all of us to decide, and why can those who call themselves our leaders ignore our wishes?

A vote of the people should be binding on the government. If we express our will, what right do the human beings running our government have to ignore or go against what we decide. In a democracy, the voice of the people is the power, the only power.

If those running our country are not listening to us then who are they listening to?

I think the men and women running our country have no idea just how unhappy most of us are with our government.

As it now stands, the party with the most seats forms the government, even though, percentage-wise, in every election a majority of Canadians vote for other parties. If the party winning an election receives 35% of the votes, then 65% of the votes were against them.

Moveover, the party in power is always representing a small minority of the population. If only 40% of all Canadians vote in an election, then a party winning the election with 35% of the vote is given the power to run our country by receiving the vote of only 14% of all Canadians. (35% of the vote X 40% of population voting).

In number, there are more people than politicians. We know what we want. Let us test democracy. Let us test our freedom and exercise our right to self-determination.


and, The Helsinki Accord, to which the human beings running our country have agreed, states, We -- you and I -- possess the power to decide what type of government we wish to have in our country. We -- you and I -- possess the power to establish a government over us and to give to that government the power to govern us. The fundamental right of democracy allows us to change our system of government, not just change the government within a system.

Just because a law was passed, just because a constitution was written, just because a political system of government was established does not mean that it is a good law, a good constitution, or a good system of government; it does not mean that it is the best way of doing things, nor does it mean that we will not, cannot, or should not change our minds; for now or at some future time, we can rescind the law, rewrite the constitution, or change the system of government.

It is absurd that the human beings running our government claim that they have the right to set our constitution -- the rules they are supposed to abide by -- aside at will, and that if we seriously consider doing the same, it is illegal. The power to establish or alter our constitution abides within us by virtue of our right to determine our form of governance. It is our right to overrule the decisions of our government.

It would seem that since the right to govern is bestowed upon our government by us and we have the right to change the form of our governing system, we also have the power and the right to suspend the constitution in a crisis situation and take the power to govern back upon ourselves, thereby suspending the power of our government to govern.

I propose a new constitution, the rules by which our government can govern us, simple enough for all to understand, under which ALL laws, our government system, and the men and women leading us would be subordinated, voted on directly by the people; and I propose a new legal system based upon legal minimalism, reducing the number of laws and reasons for which our liberties could be restricted.

It is time for us to take back control of our country, to manifest our free-will, and choose the direction that we, as a democracy, as a group of free beings, wish to go.

Chapter 28

If any human being wished to control us and restrict our freedoms or wanted to resist any movement towards significant and lasting change, they would use our legal system to do it.

In our quest to establish a free society, it is imperative that we examine our legal system closely and establish safeguards against any legal abuse of power.

Clearly one thing that needs to happen is the entrenchment of our fundamental human rights within a constitution in such a way that our rights cannot be set aside, overridden or changed by those who call themselves our leaders.

Moreover, we need to examine closely the laws and rules currently in existence. Under what conditions can our liberties be restricted and our freedoms removed? We need to know the powers that the human beings running our government have put in place.

Wherever there is the potential for the laws of our country to be used against us to restrict, control or subjugate us, the laws need to be removed or safeguards put in place to prevent abuse of power by those to whom we have given authority over us.

Just because something is legal, does not make it right.

Under both Canadian and International law, we in Canada are "presumed innocent until proven guilty," with the "right to liberty," and "association," the "right to not be arbitrarily detained or imprisoned," nor "be denied bail without just cause." Moreover, the United Nations INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, to which Canada has agreed, says that "It shall not be the general rule that persons awaiting trial shall be detained in custody."221

Yet there is a common practice in our country in which a person, upon arrest, appears before a judge who gives them an option: Either stay in jail until your trial or voluntarily sign a court "undertaking."

These undertakings place a list of restrictions upon a person's liberty, often including parts of the city into which they cannot go, people with whom they cannot associate, curfews, a specific address they must reside in and be present at during certain hours (not unlike house arrest), and other restrictions upon their movement and freedom. These undertakings stay in effect until their trial, usually months later.

Now the idea of a legal system is that if evidence is brought against a person, they have the right to question and challenge the evidence against them.222  If the judge decides, after hearing the evidence, that the person did, in fact, break a law, then a penalty is imposed upon them -- a fine, jail sentence, or some other restriction of their freedom -- for their having broken the rule.

Until a person has a chance to hear and challenge the evidence and present evidence of their own, they are presumed innocent. It seems obvious that, since they are innocent, there is no legal justification for imposing a penalty upon an individual prior to conviction.

Yet, even though a person is presumed innocent until proven guilty, our courts are routinely, through these undertakings, restricting the freedom of individuals BEFORE trial and conviction, basically imposing a penalty upon them only because they have been charged with a crime -- and if a person does not agree to the conditions of the undertaking, they have to stay in jail, often for months, waiting for trial.

The human beings in our court system are issuing such undertakings many times daily throughout our country, even for minor offenses and in situations where the individuals are not considered dangerous.

Even if a person agrees to voluntarily sign an undertaking, once the case goes to trial, if found guilty, the person charged is then given another penalty or restriction of their liberty upon conviction.

As a result of all this, free citizens in this free country of ours spend many months of their lives restricted.

As we take a look at our legal system, our court system, our laws, and the power some human beings have to restrict our liberties, as we enact safeguards for our liberty, of necessity, we must take a close look at our police forces and the police officers in them.

In doing their jobs, our police officers enforce the laws passed by the human beings running our government. When those beings pass corrupt laws, our police officers are given the task of enforcing those laws. When corrupt police officers enforce the law, then abuse of justice and abuse of citizens take place.

Justice Peter Cory of the Supreme Court of Canada wrote:

I was told by a police officer, "We know who the bad ones are but the procedure is so complicated and our unions so strong that it is almost impossible to fire anyone or remove them from duty."

Yet, we need to find a way. We need to rein in the police, remove the corrupt ones and those who abuse their authority, and create the means for civilian control over the actions of our police officers.

We have 55,865 police officers in Canada, one for every 523 Canadians.224  Not all of them are corrupt, not all of them abuse their positions of authority. There are human beings in our police forces who are trying to do a good job, trying to make a positive difference, trying to help others, trying to serve and protect us.

Imagine what would happen if we created a force of peace officers trained in non-violent conflict resolution and communication.

Imagine a force of 55,000 men and women, who, when called to a scene of conflict, would take the time to help resolve the differences between individuals, rather than just deciding who they think is in the wrong, arresting them, and punishing them for their mistakes and the conflict that it created.

We need to reduce the number of laws in our country and stop using the power of detainment for all but the most serious and dangerous situations, stop putting people in jail and through the legal system as a "quick fix" solution for what is happening in our midst.

We need to create a system of restorative justice, not punitive justice, where those who are injured and those who commit the injuries are given help to restore peace between them, rather than using punishment and confinement as our primary solution.

Our police officers, by taking adversarial roles in dealing with people, are not only losing the respect of Canadians, they are teaching the rising generation that "might is right," that "violence is okay," instead of showing through their actions that conflicts can be resolved, communication is possible, and harmony between individuals can be restored.

Let me say to all men and women in our police forces:

Act honourable and worthy of the respect of all Canadians and you will receive our respect.

Although there is a human tendency for the strong to bully the weak, refrain from adopting a stance which would make your position an instrument of oppression. Do not commit injustices.

We are not your enemy nor are you ours

Chapter 29

Life is life. Sometimes bad things happen. Sometimes accidents or misfortune occur. Sometimes people do not treat us well.

Many times, we feel that we deserve some sort of justice when something bad happens to us, that someone should be punished -- be fired from their job, arrested, beaten, or suffer in some other way -- because they wronged us, or else we feel that we should be paid money for having lived through a bad experience.

From the time we are young, we often seek outside help in resolving our conflicts, going to our authority figures -- our fathers, teachers, managers, bosses, or police -- to seek vengeance for our injustices and to solve our problems.

Yet we learn from our experiences, that is part of this journey of discovery we call life, and just as we are wronged, we each have wronged another. So how do we deal with situations of conflict when they arise?

Above all else, we need honest communication.

We need to look each other in the eye and tell one another when they have wronged us, how we feel and why. Communicate. Give them the chance to say I am sorry and to correct the wrong. Another human being will hear almost anything we have to say, if we speak truthfully, honestly and gently, and then listen to what they have to say. Often, the other person did not mean to hurt us or offend us, and where no offense was intended, no offense should be taken. Direct, honest communication can resolve most conflicts.

We should begin teaching non-violent conflict resolution in our schools, beginning in kindergarten, teaching options other than anger, violence and the need to "get even", teaching listening skills and how to communicate our feelings, teaching that courtesy is a manifestation of respect.

In Portland Oregon is the Oregon Peace Institute. They are a nonprofit organization which has its office in a shopping mall. There they sell messages of peace -- books, bumper-stickers, posters, t-shirts, greeting cards -- that over time have spread throughout the city, turning Portland into one of the more peaceful, compassionate cities on the continent. But they do more than that. They have developed curriculum materials for teachers to use in the classroom to teach non-violent conflict resolution.

They do good work.

A couple of years ago, students from two neighbourhood schools began having a lot of conflict -- territorial -- hating each other and fighting each other for no reason other than because the students attended the "other" school. The Oregon Peace Institute, at the invitation of a school teacher, began "peace talks" with the students of the two schools.

Eventually, they worked out a peace treaty and had a formal signing ceremony attended by the Mayor, the Police Chief, the head of the school board, and all the students of both schools. The two schools began holding joint, non-competitive events, like dances, where the students came to know one another. Friendships were made. The violence and conflict ended.

It is easy to fear and to hate those we do not know. Yet as we learn to accept our differences and celebrate our diversity, we come to know that every human being feels life as intensely as you or I. We all feel love, pain, joy, and sadness. At our most human level, we are all equally human.

But conflicts do arise. Learning to deal with them wisely, may be the greatest lesson we can learn.

In a perfect society, we would all treat each other with respect, courtesy, and honesty. We would honour differing points of view and acknowledge one another's right to direct their own life, according to their own standard of honour.

But we don't live in a perfect society. There are those who see violence as a solution in their life, who use violence as their first response to resolving their conflicts.

How do we deal with violent situations when they arise?

In Asia, where many of the Martial Arts were developed, there is a code of conduct which outlines the appropriate use of force in violent or threatening situations:

When violent or threatening situations do arise, keep a level head about you, do all that you can to keep the situation from escalating further, and strive to resolve the conflict. On a human to human level, we can resolve most situations peacefully through direct communication. If that fails, remember, there is no shame in walking away. Violence is rarely the answer. Stay peaceful.

Chapter 30

Every morning, children in the United States stand up, put their hand over their hearts and sing,

The people of the United States, in their National Anthem, sing of the glory of war.

The people of the United States have always used war and violence to solve their problems. It is a country that was founded by revolution, divided by civil war, that uses military violence against other countries to resolve its conflicts, and internally has armed itself against its own people.

They are not very good at diplomacy or peace. Yet, the United States of America believes itself to be the superior nation of the world. In the name of God and freedom, it believes that it can do no wrong and that whatever it wants, it deserves to have. It believes that it has the right to lead the world.

The United States has much to be ashamed of.

The old European colonial mindset of go forth, conquer, convert, rule over -- sure in the belief of the superiority of one's cause over all other mindsets -- continues this day in the mindset of the United States.

"The United States is responsible for 75% of the conventional weapons sold to developing countries."225

The United States sells $20 billion dollars worth of arms to other countries every year.226  They are arming the world and the governments which support the United States. Many of those governments are, in turn, using these weapons to oppress the citizens of their country or to fight with neighbouring ones, while the United States economically robs and plunders them.

If the United States is interested in peace as it says it is, why does it sell munitions worldwide, increasing the weapons of war throughout the world? I see them creating military conflicts to support their economic and political agenda, selling weapons for profit to both sides in wars and using those conflicts to test new weapons and increase sales.227

If the United States is interested in peace as it says it is, why does it spend $266 billion dollars a year on its military?228

Since Vietnam, the people of the United States have been reluctant to allow their government to get involved in a full-scale war so the United States military uses the media and public relations to "sell" the idea of military actions to the people of the United States. War is packaged in words that make people feel good -- doublespeak -- war becomes peacemaking, military spending becomes defense spending, and everything the military does is done in the name of freedom, democracy, and peace. If people can somehow feel that the military violence committed in the name of the United States is a right and moral thing, if they can feel good about it, they let the killing and the sale of weapons continue.

When President Bill Clinton told United States "peace-keeping" troops that, if necessary, they could use "decisive force" against the citizens of Sarievo, they cheered.229

But the truth remains: no matter how many bombers are built or missiles sold, no matter how many people are killed, peace will never be created at the end of a gun.

Which governments of the world are standing as an obstacle to peace?

The United States has intentionally withheld $1.2 billion dollars in fees that it owes to the United Nations because they do not agree with some of the decisions that the world body has made.230  The United Nations, nearly bankrupt, has been unable, as a result, to fund peace-keeping operations and do other things that the world council of countries needs to do. The United States, in order to get what it wants, repeatedly holds the United Nations hostage, economically.

Whenever the United Nations undertakes a peace-keeping operation, many countries contribute troops and money to the task. All of the troops are assigned to a U.N. commander, selected from one of the countries participating. The commander is given command of troops from many nations for the peace-keeping assignment. The United States is the only country of the world which will not allow its troops to be under the command of a United Nations commander. Whenever the United States participates in a U.N. peace-keeping operation, their troops (and usually the troops from all the participating countries) are under the command of the United States. Whenever this happens, basically the United Nations Peace-keeping forces become nothing more than a cover for a United States military operation.

War in the name of peace.

Twice the United Nations attempted to pass resolutions asking the World Court for an opinion as to whether or not the possession, threat of, or use of nuclear weapons was a violation of international law. Both times, despite overwhelming support for the resolutions by the countries of the world, the resolutions were blocked by a veto of the United States.

In a different vote, a United Nations Disarmament Committee resolution calling for a phased program of nuclear disarmament which would lead to "eventual elimination of these weapons within a timebound framework," failed to pass after all sixteen NATO countries, including Canada, followed the lead of the United States in voting against the resolution.231

In the world council of countries, there is no equality or democracy. Five countries have permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council.232  They are the five allies who won the Second World War, and the only five countries who "officially" possess nuclear weapons. Even though the Security Council is responsible "for the maintenance of peace and security,"233 the permanent members of the Council are the main countries of the world which are standing in the way of global nuclear disarmament. The permanent members of the United Nations Security Council maintain a monopoly of power through the continued threat of nuclear war.

Each one of them has veto power over Security Council Resolutions. The other ten countries on the Council are elected and rotated, but no other country of the world possesses the right to veto resolutions. What this means is that, even when all the other countries agree to a different course of action, five countries possess the power to control the United Nations because they were the winners in a war fought more than half a century ago. More than once U.N. General Assembly votes have passed 184 - 1, only to be killed by the United States using their veto in the Security Council.

The United States has used its veto power 70 times, usually to block actions or resolutions that do not support its military agenda, or that of its allies.234

The United States, with only 5% of the worlds population, is but one country of many. Yet the people of the United States feel that they have the right to do whatever they wish, that they can take what they want and do what they want, either through economic force of will or by military might.

The United States of America is the world's bully.

Where do they think they get the right to lead the world, to force all countries and all people to bend to their will? Where do they think they get the right to use economic coercion and military violence to get their own way, to rob and plunder the world for their own domestic gratification?

And why do they feel that the desires of the United States, their trade agreements, laws, and policies should dictate the actions of all other countries and all other people.

The United States Supreme Court has ruled that if a person in another country has broken a law of the United States that it is legal for the United States Government to go into that country, kidnap that person, return them to the United States, and put them on trial.

Picture what would happen if any other country claimed the same right in reverse. Picture what would have happened if Sadam Hussein had someone kidnapped in New York or Washington and brought to Iraq to stand trial for violating a Moslem Judicial law. No doubt the United States would take their bombers, missiles and military to teach Sadam Hussein that United States sovereign territory is not under the control of foreign law.

However, the United States Congress has also passed the Helms-Burton law claiming that it has the right to retaliate against non-U.S. companies doing business in Cuba, and the D'Amato Bill, which seeks to punish foreign-owned energy companies doing business with Iran and Libya. If a Canadian company does business in Cuba, Iran or Libya, the United States claims the right to punish that company and its employees under U.S. law. This is nothing less than the United States, in clear violation of international law, claiming sovereign jurisdiction over other countries, their business dealings, and the actions of their citizens.235

Again, picture the response of the United States if a country passed a law restricting the right of U.S. citizens to do business in a different country.

Prior to World War II, the Japanese used their military to set up an Asian Economic Trade Zone (not unlike the three Free Trade Zones that the United States is currently proposing in Asia, North America and Europe). The United States responded to Japan's actions by imposing a naval blockage of all oil heading to Japan. Japan, a country with no oil or energy sources of its own was forced into a corner, so they bombed Pearl Harbour.

It is possible that the actions and focus of the United States are the single greatest threat to the world. If the United States was conquering the world militarily, country by country, instead of economically and politically -- through corporations and trade agreements, weapon sales, the CIA, and the United Nations -- the entire world would have already banded together to fight World War III against the United States.

Which governments of the world are standing as an obstacle to peace?

"Darth Vader for President."

Chapter 31

Canada is a nation of peace.

We are one of the few countries of the world that was created by a vote of an elected parliament, rather than war. We have never had a revolution, never had a civil war. We have fought only in defense of others and only when necessary.

We have a tree on our flag, animals on our money. We are not quick to anger and we are known internationally as a peaceful country, as peaceful people.

Most Canadians do not realize how well-respected we are by the people of the world; just as most Americans do not know how deeply they are despised.

So why would we want to follow the lead or example of the United States? As we participate in United States war games and allow our military to fight in United States military operations, as we support what they are doing throughout the world, our image as a peaceful nation is becoming tainted, tarnished and threatened. Too many times lately we have been dragged into conflicts, not of our choosing nor of our making, under the United States banner.

It is time for us to take a stand for peace:

Military violence is not the only way.

Countries and governments are nothing more than human beings who feel life as intensely as you or I but who see the world from different points of view.

War is nothing more than two people fighting, magnified 10,000 times. Both on a human-to-human level and on a country-to-country level, we can resolve most conflicts peacefully through direct communication. War is rarely the answer.

Let us raise up a nation of peace makers, trained in non-violent conflict resolution, to work throughout the world helping people communicate honestly, truthfully, and gently, working to resolve their conflicts without guns, without war, without military violence.

Let us work for full democratic equality in the Council of Nations so that every country is equal, every country has a voice and no country can impose its will upon others through threats, violence, coercion, or economic might.

Let Canada stand as a neutral nation, with no military alliance, no military treaties, and no military obligations.

The nation of the peace makers.

We spend $10 billion dollars on our military,237 and export $200 million dollars worth of weapons to other countries238 every year.

Let us dismantle our military, stop manufacturing and selling weapons of war, outlaw all arms deals, and contribute nothing to the business of killing. We can put our labour, our resources, and the money we spend on the military to better use.

We cannot work for peace while profiting from war.

Peace has to start somewhere; why not here? Somewhere, sometime, one country must be the first to disarm. Let it be here, now, us.

As long as we continue to fear one another and prepare for war, war is inevitable.

We may be the only country strong enough, respected enough and peaceful enough to stand up against the United States and succeed. We know we could never win a war against them -- our best defense is peace.

If we take the lead, become a neutral nation of peace, and do what needs to be done, we will have nothing to fear from the United States. The world will be watching, and if it ever came down to a military conflict between our two countries, the world would stand with Canada against the United States.

If peace is going to happen, it will only be because we create it. We are the only ones who can.

Where do we begin? We begin by realizing that individuals have the power to make a difference.

A group of doctors set up an organization called International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. They won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1985.*  In recent years, they have been working worldwide on a task called The World Court Project, to get a court ruling on the question, "Is the threat or the use of nuclear weapons in any circumstances permitted under international law?"239

* The group is now called International Physicians for Global Survival.

Because of their efforts, the last time the United Nations considered a resolution asking the International Court of Justice240 for a decision on the question, the resolution passed, despite opposition from the United States.241  Not wanting to oppose the United States, Canada abstained in the vote.

The organization also collected 3.7 million signed declarations of conscience from individuals world-wide asking the court for a decision against nuclear weapons.242

The United States told the Court, in seriousness, that the use of nuclear weapons: 1) would not necessarily cause unnecessary suffering; 2) would not necessarily have indiscriminate effects on civilians; and, 3) would not necessarily have effects on territories of non-involved countries.243

On July 8, 1996, the International Court of Justice made its ruling, saying that the threat of, and almost every conceivable use of nuclear weapons is illegal under international law.244 (For more information, see note)

Now we need to ensure that the five nuclear countries and all governments, including ours, honour the Court's decision. Using this ruling, we could end Canada's nuclear industry, completely, if we wish.

Because one human being first thought the thought and saw the possibility, and because 3.7 million people world-wide signed a declaration of conscience asking the World Court to hear the case and make a ruling against the use of nuclear weapons, because citizen's groups and individuals worked together and made the effort, this ruling has come about. It did not happen and would never have happened if we had waited for the human beings running our governments and militaries to take action.

Together, we can change our direction. We have the power. We can do whatever we set our minds to do, if we have the will to do it.

Consider what would happen if we used our technology and communication systems to hold a world-wide referendum, binding on all governments, asking every human being on the planet one question. What would happen if we, as a species, voting, removed from all governments, simultaneously, the power to engage in military activities or declare war, removed from our governments the power to fight, the power to kill us and each other. What would happen if the manufacture, sale or trade of weapons became illegal world-wide.

Too often human beings have been the pawns in other people's conflicts. In the 20th Century alone, 100 million people -- four times the population of Canada -- have died because of war and military conflict.245

It is time for us to hold the United States -- which claims superiority in the name of their god -- and all Christian nations to their Word:

Chapter 32

Fire, blessed fire.

Since the beginning of time we have gathered by the fire for warmth, friendship, telling stories, and looking at the stars. By the fire we cooked our food, shared our meals, and wondered about life.

The fire circle is our oldest place of gathering. We all know it; we recognize it, can feel it deep within us each time we sit and look into a fire. For thousands of years, generation upon generation, fire has brought us comfort.

Beside the fire, we created our mythologies, spoke of magic and gods, made music and laughed. We talked and dreamed, sharing our ideas, then slept and dreamed, warmed by the fire. We looked at the moon and wanted to go there; we watched the birds until we learned how to fly.

There is nothing so unchanging in our history than sitting by a fire, nothing we have done longer. It is where we came to know one another. It is our longest continuing ritual of gathering...

...until this generation.

In our schools, we are teaching our youth basic "Living Skills," like how to balance a chequebook but not how to build a fire or the art of firekeeping. In this cold land we call Canada, having matches in our pocket and knowing how to build a fire could keep us alive.

Last summer, in Penticton, British Columbia, youth from across our country gathered like they do every year, looking for work picking fruit in the orchards. There, like many cities, it is illegal to sleep on public land and sleeping on private land is trespassing. Many were camping where they would not be seen or caught. One week was particularly rainy. Everyone got wet -- along with their sleeping bags and clothes -- and cold.

After three days of rain, I went searching for dry wood. We needed a fire to dry ourselves and warm up or many people were going to get sick. I found some wood. On public land, I built a small, contained fire, safe but good. Many people were grateful; we started to warm up and dry. But, of course, along came the fire department and the police. They said it was illegal to build a fire within the city.

I asked them, "Are you telling me that I cannot build a fire to stay warm if I am cold and wet?"

They said no, I could not. They told me I had to put out the fire or I would be charged. I refused. So the fire department brought a fire extinguisher and put out the fire, then drove away to their warm, dry fire station, leaving us standing in the rain.

I know fire well. I am a fire-keeper. I know how to build a safe fire. If I build a fire to stay warm, there is none that can say I cannot. We have had fire longer than we have had government. No one has jurisdiction over fire.

Fire calls to each of us.

Let us build a fire circle in the heart of every city. The fire of the people that burns every night. Let it be a gathering place, on public land, where all are welcome, to the exclusion of none, where we can meet one another, talk, share ideas, eat, come together, celebrate life and have joy; a free space where all thoughts are welcome, every idea is heard; where we speak what we know and learn what we can; a place to party, make music, and stay warm; a place of free-will with each responsible for themselves, where all beings are respected and no violence allowed.

Perhaps our Native elders would volunteer to keep the fires. They know fire well and have much wisdom to share. We still have some trees left in Canada; surely we can spare a few to create all the good that would come if we made fire circles in our cities to keep us warm and give us a place to gather.

Let us get to know one another again. It is too easy to fear a stranger. Let us create gathering places where people can gather, hang out, and become friends.

In every city, let us also create gathering places for our youth; youth-run cooperatives, open late, all night on weekends, with chess and board games, video games and pool, where coffee is sold by the pot and local bands could rent space for all-aged gigs. Right now, the only place to hear or play live music is in bars that many are too young to enter.

Perhaps such cooperatives could have an indoor skateboarding park where our skateboarders could burn off energy in January while having fun and improving their skills.

Too often boredom, lack of money, and no where to go, get people into trouble. What is needed, above all else, is a place where members of the rising generation are welcome whenever they want, for as long as they want.

Why is it that we can always find the money to build more jails, but we cannot afford to build or run youth centres? Whatever the cost, it needs to be done.

Too often, good ideas are killed by red tape and bureaucracy: by-laws and zoning, social services and police. "A youth-run co-operative? You can't sell food there; the building is zoned as a warehouse, not for public gatherings; you do not have a license for live concerts; you need a business license, a tax number; you have to be registered as a non-profit organization; and there has to be a responsible adult;" and so on, and so on, and so on...

Why are the obstacles there? Why are we making it so difficult for something that needs to happen, to happen? Why do we make something as natural as a group of kids getting together to have fun, so difficult?

Let us remove the obstacles. No one should stand in the way of what needs to happen.

There is nothing more important we can do than create free gathering spaces.

We are spending millions of dollars trying to keep this country together, millions on Quebec referendums, political committees, and other activities. If we really want national unity, all we need to do is get to know one another.

We should encourage the youth of this country to travel this country and meet one another. Instead of constructing legal and social barriers, we should make it as easy as possible for them. Every city should have free campgrounds and shelters, places to sleep and free food, so youth without much money can spend their summers coming together, meeting, talking about what needs to be done, making friends, and learning about this land.

If we are free, we have the right to gather together in our cities, around a fire, or wherever we choose. Laws, lack of money, or age should not keep us from gathering together and talking about what needs to be done if that is what we really want to do?

There are 10,013,200 human beings under 25 years old in this country.247  Just imagine ten million youth travelling, or gathering together in our streets, or in coffee shops and youth centres, talking about what is going on, planning the changes to be made, and deciding the direction of our lives, ten million youth choosing a better way.

Chapter 33

I am astounded at the zeal with which our communities have repressed skateboarding.

Skateboarding is not easy; it requires a level of skill that only hours of practice can bring. For the most part, skaters are courteous and considerate of others, polite and friendly; they do not skate where they will bother others, and they stop or carry their boards when people walk by. Skating is harder on the body than it is on property, yet everywhere there are signs that say, "NO SKATEBOARDING ALLOWED." In our concrete jungle, empty sidewalks, empty parking lots, empty spaces become a playground for skaters, until the signs go up, the security guards come, or a police cruiser drives by.

In most cities, skateboarding is illegal. In many cities, if a police officer catches someone skating, he takes their board away from them. Just imagine the reaction if every time a driver was caught for speeding, his car was confiscated. The public outcry would be so loud and so intense that the police would have to stop, but skaters are "just kids," so no one listens to their plight. Even though a board is not as expensive as a car, they are not cheap and to a young skater, they are very expensive; his board is his world, his transportation, and his fun. Skateboarding gives our youth a chance to get some exercise, gather together with friends and play. They will only be young once.

Why is it that doing something so positive, that hurts no one, is made illegal?

The belief that law and order must rule supreme is simply not true. If my actions are hurting no one, wherein lies the crime? If my actions are hurting no one, then no one has jurisdiction to say what I can or cannot do. No one has jurisdiction to make rules for my behaviour but me.

Right action is a choice made by each individual, according to a personal standard of honour. It cannot be instilled or forced upon us through legislation, punishment or government violence.

When the human beings running our government arbitrarily makes rules as to what we can or cannot do, they have exceeded the authority that we have given them. Yet the human beings governing us believe that they can do that. Those who disagree with the rules, who violate them, are punished by our government for living their lives freely.

The age of Christian thought has passed; the age of the Lawgiver, the enforcer, and the silently obedient is over. It is time to stop putting people in cages or punishing them for disobeying the rules. Our government has no right to create victimless crimes. They have no jurisdiction.

Whether it is sleeping, skateboarding, smoking marijuana, burning money, sitting on the grass, feeding hungry people, crossing the street, or anything else I may choose to do, no one has the right to say I cannot. Unless there is a problem, there is no problem, and when there is a problem, I will accept responsibility to decide what to do. I need no government to protect me from myself or the choices that I make. I need no police officers -- the dungeon keepers of the world -- punishing me for doing something different than what another human being thinks I should, punishing me for my disobedience.

I smoke marijuana.

So many people smoke marijuana, thousands and thousands of people.

Yet because of the American-lead war on drugs, whenever human beings come together, what otherwise would be a natural gathering of friends becomes an illegal event.

The fact that so many smoke is an indication that this sixty year old prohibition law no longer reflects the thoughts or choices of a new generation.

It is a victimless crime, an old rule that needs to die.

If every person who smokes came out of the closet and began smoking publicly, and if every person charged was to plead not-guilty in court and ask for a trial, the police and courts would be so overwhelmed with cases that they would either stop prosecuting them or they would get nothing else done.

I can smoke tobacco but I cannot smoke pot. Noam Chomsky calls it "the war on certain drugs." Caffeine is okay. Alcohol is okay. Tobacco is okay. Even Ritalin and Tylenol are okay but all the illegal drugs are not.

No doubt this Saturday night as many go to the bars, few, if any, will remember to drink a toast to the men and women who spent time in jail in this century, struggling against a law prohibiting alcohol.

Our current prohibition has outlawed the use or sale of many mind-altering substances, saying that those states of mind, those states of consciousness and ways of thinking are illegal. Our Canadian constitution says that I have "freedom of thought."248  It would seem that my freedom of thought does not include thinking in non-traditional or mind-altering ways. How can anyone say that a state of mind or a state of consciousness within my mind is illegal? How can anyone say that I cannot explore my consciousness or do with my mind whatever I choose?

Marijuana and other mind-altering substances show us different states of consciousness and different ways of seeing, helping us explore our human consciousness. They show us that our perception of the world is only one perception and that it is changeable.

However, not all drugs are equal, not all drugs have the same effect. When we group all illegal drugs together and say they are all equally bad, we do a great disservice to the rising generation. When someone tries marijuana for the first time -- as many have -- they discover that it is not the horrible, terrible, awful drug that they were told it was, they discover that their parents, teachers, and those whose job it is to guide them, lied to them. No doubt, they then lose trust in what they have been told and wonder, "If they lied to me about marijuana, did they also lie to me about everything else?"

We are telling our youth how to live by withholding truthful information from them, information they need to make wise choices in their lives.


This idea that withholding information from our youth, not telling them, will keep them from finding out about drugs or trying them is false. All that happens is that they learn it from each other, not always accurately, and sometimes they place themselves at greater risk because of what they do not know. We should not use information to control another person's choices for their life, and we currently should not believe that withholding information that someone needs to know is somehow protecting them or for their own good.

How much better it would be if we were honest, open, and truthful and gave them accurate information.

Instead of going into the schools and saying, "Just say no to drugs," how much better it would be if we realized that our youth have available to them options and substances that the older generation have no knowledge of or experience from which to speak. How much better it would be if our youth were taught, "These are the drugs; if this is what you are doing, this is what you need to know," -- then tell them what they need to know. Tell them about the drugs, what they are, correct dosages, and safe ways to use them; tell them which ones are addicting, and to what degree; whether there are side effects, and what they are; tell them what the experience is like, both good and bad, what the sensations are, and what benefits or dangers the experience could bring.

If we teach the rising generation that their life is their own, their choices are theirs to make, if we teach them moderation in all things, that, in every area of life, anything to excess is dangerous, if we give them complete and accurate information with which to decide, I have no doubt that they will make wise choices, use drugs wisely, and learn from the experience.

Some people abuse themselves by the choices they make, most do not. If excessive use of drugs becomes a problem, how can our youth go to their elders seeking help when they know that all they will receive is condemnation, social disgrace, and possibly jail for being honest?

If individuals are hurting themselves by the substances they are using and the choices they are making, it is a social health issue, not a legal one. If someone has an addiction, instead of putting them in a cage for breaking the rules, we need to provide the help they need, not punish them.250

Yet, we have been taught and we believe that drug use is so immoral that any amount of repression, violence and suppression of freewill is justified. Such is our hysteria. Such is our fear.

It is time to stop playing this game of "cops and robbers."

Most of our rising generation are not criminals nor are they out to hurt others. Yet we label them such for committing victimless crimes, in which they, by a conscious act of free-will, choose what they will put into their own bodies and what they do with their own minds. And for this, the breaking of the rules, we are putting our youth in jail by the thousands.

The "war on drugs" is a war on the rising generation. The number of people in jail for drug-related offenses tells me that we need to reexamine the law. We are putting people in jail "at a rate higher than that of any other western democracy except the United States."251  In a free country, that many people cannot all be wrong.

Because a plant is illegal, an ounce of marijuana is the same price as an ounce of gold. It is the illegal aspect that creates the problems: the greed, the violence, and the oppression. Unlike alcohol, smoking marijuana does not make people violent. Rather, it makes them more relaxed, peaceful, and contemplative. If this victimless crime was not illegal, most of the problems associated with it would disappear.

Yet it is more profitable for the economy, the justice system, governments, and corporations to fight the "war on drugs" and arrest our youth than it is to decriminalize drugs. Did you know that the "Just say no to drugs" campaign in the United States is mostly funded by breweries, tobacco and pharmaceutical companies, and other corporations that have an economic interest in keeping things the way they are?

In 1997, the United States spent $16 billion dollars to fight the war on drugs.252 Here in Canada, we spend $2.4 billion on our jail system and $5.8 billion on policing.253  Some of that money would be better spent if we let people make free choices in their lives, and if, instead of spending it on police and jails, we used it to pay for clinics and treatment programs to help those who need it.

Those most adamantly opposed to the decriminalization of victimless crimes fail to understand that no harm and much good can come from the manifestation of freewill. I only wonder, how many we will put in jail before we step back?

No one is holding a gun to my head saying, smoke this joint. If I do it, I am doing it of my own free-will, but there are those holding a club over my head saying, don't you dare!

If I am hurting no one, I am free to do what I wish. Where there is no victim, there is no crime.

Chapter 34

Bertrand Russell wrote:

There was a time, a few hundred years ago, when a person could go to a university, like Oxford, and, over the course of a few years, learn all the knowledge that the western world then possessed. One could read all the literature, study all the scientific knowledge, learn the mathematics and philosophy of the day.

No longer can we learn all knowledge. Knowledge has become so immense and so specialized that there are those who spend their entire life learning how one part of one cell of one plant works.

Our concept of what education is, or what it should be, has remained virtually unchanged for several hundred years. Moreover, even as our knowledge is expanding at an unprecidented rate, the decision of what to teach in our schools is be being made by human beings who are two generations older than those who are being taught.

Our way of teaching and what is being taught are outdated.

Without question, some basics are needed, but what would happen if students were taught the general skills, like basic math, basic science, how to read and write, and then allowed to let their curiosity take them from there.

Picture what would happen if we enabled each person to take their own natural curiosity as far as they wanted, in any direction, to its furthest conclusion?

If individuals could have access to the resources, teachers, technology, and knowledge necessary for them to follow their natural curiosity without limitation, we would create a generation of individuals who would learn about things we have not yet conceived in our minds, make discoveries not yet discovered, create inventions of benefit to humanity and push the threshold of knowledge beyond our imagination.

Instead of using technology for the pursuit of wealth and its resulting destruction of life, technology could free us up to pursue knowledge and individualized learning based upon each person's skills, ability and interest.

Imagine what would happen if we set about to remove the obstacles to learning, allowing human beings to learn what they want, instead of what they are told to learn, and to learn for the sake of learning, all that they can, all that they want to.

Perhaps we should move away from the concept of education factories where lots of people go in, learn the same thing and come out with a piece of paper saying that they have learned what someone else thought they should learn. There is too much knowledge out there and too much diversity of interest for us to continue providing generic education for generic students.

What if we established a huge mentor program, where those with specialized knowledge are matched with those who want to learn it? Certainly, with communication and computer technology, we have the means to make it happen.

It is possible.

Non-conformity is of value, non-traditional ways of learning have a place. Members of the rising generation could learn many things by walking with those who have wisdom and learning from those they respect.

The United Nations INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, to which Canada has agreed, says:

Right now, the cost of education is so high that learning is kept from many. Some great thinkers and brilliant people are being held back from exploring the depths of their consciousness and the possibilities of their mind for lack of money.

The right to knowledge is far from free.

Access to knowledge, access to learning, should be available to all, equally, without regard for ability to pay. Keeping someone from learning, just because they do not possess a piece of tree with ink on it, makes no sense.

There is a myth that the purpose of education is to get a job.

We are told, "Go to school so you can get a good job and make lots of money," so we pay lots of money to go to school, only to end up thousands of dollars in debt. No one should have to put themselves into debt for years to come, just to learn something, get an education or acquire knowledge.

Moreover, by going into debt for knowledge, we perpetuate the continuation of an old mindset, the economic system and corporate ideals.

It becomes a cycle. If we have to get an education to get a job and we have to go into debt to get the education, then we have to get a job to pay the debt.

We end up working for a corporation for many years, labouring to pay the debt of acquiring the knowledge that we were told we needed in order to get the job necessary so we could eat and live.

We end up with no choice but to support with our labour a corporate-economic structure that we might not agree with, while the corporations continue business-as-usual, making profit and destroying life, with our help and at our expense.

All the while nothing changes and corporations have labour so they can profit more.

Life as a career? Who said that the purpose of learning is so we can spend all of our days working.

That is not why we go to school or get an education.

Would it not be wiser to spend all of our days learning for the sake of learning and living for the sake of living?

Even in our universities, more and more of the funding is coming from corporations and is used to support corporate research within our "schools of higher learning." The facilities, professors and technologies are being used to research new technologies and areas of knowledge considered profitable to the sponsoring company, ignoring the pure quest for knowledge for the benefit and good of all.

Increasingly, our universities are becoming Research and Development Departments for corporate interests.

Canada used to be known, worldwide, for its advanced scientific research, but not long ago, three of our government-sponsored research organizations were combined together into one, the main purpose of which was the advancement of science for the support of corporate/business research.

As medical, pharmaceutical, biotechnology and other types of corporations are established, with the purpose of making money, knowledge is being sold to the highest bidder and withheld from others doing similar research because they are seen as "competition."

For example, in the quest for a cure for AIDS, research corporations, whose stocks are traded on the stock exchange, have been established for the purpose of making a profit for their shareholders. Whichever company comes up with a cure or treatment first, stands to make millions of dollars (and will probably win the Nobel Prize for Medicine). Many of the companies are doing similar but secret research, refusing to share with one another what they are learning. As a result, what should be a worldwide, combined effort to find a cure, is being delayed because of corporate competition, while people die.

Knowledge is for the good of all, not the profit of a few. What happened to the scientific goal of seeking knowledge for knowledge sake and sharing it with others for the benefit of humanity?

There should be no withholding of knowledge in the pursuit of profit and no more selling of knowledge to the highest bidder. All knowledge and research should be shared so that those doing research in any area can work together to find solutions to our problems, instead of competing against one another.

Chapter 35

As I look at many of the problems facing us today, as I look at many different issues, one of the solutions that keeps coming up over and over again is hemp.

Hemp, also known as Cannabis Sativa, is one of the oldest and most useful plants on the planet; it has been used for thousands of years all over the world.

"The earliest known woven fabric was [made] of hemp (8,000-7,000 B.C.),"256 and throughout most of our history, it has been our "largest agricultural crop and most important industry... producing the overall majority of [our] fibre, fabric, lighting oil, paper, incense and medicines, as well as a primary source of essential food oil and protein for humans and animals."257

When Johannes Gutenberg first discovered how to print books using movable typesetting in 1438 A.D., he printed his first book, The Gutenberg Bible, on paper made from hemp. That same century, Columbus set out to discover the "New World" using hemp rope and canvas sails on his ships, like sailors before and after him. (Our word "canvas" comes from the latin word "cannabis")258  Because of hemp, traders and settlers were able to travel around the world.

The first agricultural laws passed in the thirteen colonies (later to become the United States) required all land owners and farmers to grow hemp. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew hemp on their plantations,259 and "Benjamin Franklin started one of America's first paper mills with cannabis...[allowing] America to have a free colonial press."260

The first two drafts of the United States Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper,261 and by 1850, the United States had 8,327 hemp plantations of 2,000 acres or more.262

Here in Canada, during the 1920's and 1930's, the Canadian Department of Agriculture did intensive research into hemp, its optimum growing requirements, and its uses.263

During the drought of the 1930's, our Department of Agriculture recommended that farmers, in an attempt to grow food, move their gardens away from their houses to the lowest part of their land (where water would gather if some rain fell). They further recommended that the farmers plant hemp around their gardens as a windbreak to prevent wind damage to their gardens.

"Because cannabis hemp is, overall, the strongest, most-durable, longest-lasting natural soft-fibre on the can be grown in virtually any climate or soil condition on Earth, even marginal ones."264

It is still grown in Europe, Asia, Australia, South America and Africa. Yet it is illegal to grow it here. It was outlawed in Canada and the United states in 1938 because a few human beings stood to make a lot of money from the introduction of new technologies in paper production, chemical manufacturing, and synthetic materials.265

Almost everything we need for life -- food, clothing, shelter, air, water and trees -- and the problems surrounding them could be impacted in a positive way if we grew hemp. Yet, the solutions to so many of the pressing issues of our day, solutions that we should be rushing to embrace, are being held at arms length because of a law passed in 1938.

Canada is by far the largest exporter of forest products in the world, exporting over $40 billion dollars worth every year.266

We produce one-third of the world's newsprint -- more than any other country -- and export 89 percent of it, mainly to the United States. We are also the second-largest producer of pulp, and the thirdlargest producer of sawed lumber.267

Human beings working for multinational logging companies cut down over 905,000 hectares of trees in Canada every year, 89 percent of which (805,450 hectares) are clearcut.268

According to the World Resources Institute,

We need to do all that we can to save what is left.

In a report entitled, OUR COMMON FUTURE, the United Nations environment committee has recommended that each country set aside 12 percent of it area for conservation purposes, warning that "our failure to do so will not be forgiven by future generations."270

Canada is a nation of forests: forty-five percent (45%) of our country's land area is covered with trees, but only 3 percent of our land is protected from being cut by law or policy.271

Left standing, forests regulate our rain and water cycle, produce oxygen, control soil erosion, cool the earth, and provide habitat to many species. Yet, even though Canada is one of the last places on the planet with large areas of natural forests, because of logging, localized shortages are becoming evident.

In recent years, the increased demand for forest products has caused a growing worldwide shortage of pulp, paper, newsprint and lumber.

Because of this shortage and the rising economic value of the remaining trees, the human beings running our multinational logging companies have continued to cut as much as they can, as fast as they can.

David Israelson, in his book SILENT EARTH wrote,

There are alternatives.

One acre of hemp produces four times as much paper as an acre of trees,273 and hemp fibre-board, used for home and building construction, is stronger and lasts longer than lumber made of wood.

Moreover, hemp grows in one year, while trees take 40-100 years to grow.

Not surprisingly, the forestry industry recently began a major public relations campaign to discredit hemp because it is a viable alternative to what they are doing. As always, those who are profiting from doing things the way they are currently being done are the ones most resistant to change, even when the change is for the better.

If there is a better way to do anything, why are we not doing it? If there is a better way to do anything, why can someone compel me to not do it?

Worldwide, we use 72 million barrels of oil EVERY DAY -- at 160 litres per barrel, that is eleven billion, five hundred and twenty million litres a day -- a quarter of which is used by the United States.274

We are fighting wars over oil and gasoline, and polluting our oceans and waterways with oil spills. In only one oil spill, the EXXON VALDEZ spilled 37 million litres of crude oil into Prince William Sound off British Columbia's coast, but "in the year leading up to the EXXON VALDEZ spill, tankers poured four times as much oil into the oceans during 'routine operations' such as loading and unloading....the oceans absorb as much as 6 million TONNES of oil every year."275

Yet, instead of importing oil from all over the world, we could make methanol from hemp to burn in our cars. Imagine, growing fuel for our cars right here in Canada, and at the same time, eliminating a major cause of war and pollution.

Jack Herer in his book, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, wrote:

Moreover, because hemp is a living, growing plant, Both Ford and Chrysler Motor Companies has already begun making and selling cars which run on methanol, and regular gasoline cars can easily be converted to burn the fuel.277

Henry Ford, in the 1940's, designed a strong, lightweight car built with plastic made from hemp and which ran on methanol.278  He planned to mass-produce the car, but when the United States entered World War II, the Ford Motor Company began making tanks and armoured personnel carriers instead.

Biodegradable plastics made from hemp are possible and are, to my mind, preferable to making non-biodegradable plastics with oil.

As a food source, hemp seeds can be ground up, used whole, or made into cooking oil. Hemp seeds contain more of the essential amino acids required by the human body for life than any other plant source and is second only to soybeans for protein. It is one of the most complete food sources we can grow.279

As medicine, hemp is used in the treatment of Glaucoma, Multiple Sclerosis, Asthma, AIDS, eating disorders, depression, and pain.280

Made into cloth for clothing, it is the strongest natural fibre known to humans. It can be mixed with cotton, silk, or linen and can be dyed using natural or synthetic dyes. Clothes made of hemp last longer than other fabrics, which is why Levi-Strauss originally made all their blue jeans with hemp cloth and why Adidas Corporation has started manufacturing running shoes of hemp grown in China for sale in North America.

Whether we are talking about hunger, farming, medicine, forests, oceans, air pollution, housing, the greenhouse effect, war, energy resources, clothing, nutrition, industrial use of chemicals, plastics, or a myriad of other issues, this one plant has the potential to resolve, or at least assist in, many of the tasks facing us today.

I find it astounding that in our struggle for change, one forbidden plant has such power to effect so much good. It is insane that a solution which could have such a positive impact in our lives is not being implemented because of a law passed three generations ago.

Yet, because our collective memory is only two generations long, there are not many still alive who can remember hemp or its valuable contributions to our lives.

In the 1920s and 1930s, my grandfather grew hemp. Members of my family still own that land, land that my grandfather homesteaded on, land that he laboured with his own hands to clear so he could feed his family.

Now, three generations later, my government tells me that it is illegal to grow a plant on land where my grandfather grew the same plant before me.

A plant! Who can say a plant is good or bad? A plant is a plant. Who can say that a plant which grows naturally from the earth has no right to grow? That is like saying a person has no right to live or a species has no right to exist; it is akin to biological genocide.

What would happen if we began growing hemp in Canada? Using hemp grown by our farmers, we could set up hemp-related industries: making paper and building materials, producing cloth for clothing, manufacturing plastics, producing methanol as a fuel source, and supplementing our food production.

How many of our citizens could work and be fed from these enterprises? How many jobs would be created? Using hemp and related industries -- including the infrastructure that would be created for production, transportation, and sales -- we could become a thriving self-sufficient country; we have the land, the means, and the reasons to do it.

We could begin selling hemp products throughout Canada and the rest of the world -- including the United States (under NAFTA they could not say no) -- providing economic stability inside our own country and making us less dependent upon imports. We could produce much more of what we need.

By converting one or more pulp mills to the production of hemp paper, how much of our forests could be left standing or used for other purposes?

If, instead of wood, we used hemp paper for photocopiers and fax machines, newsprint, computer forms, phone books, envelopes, junk mail, disposable plates and cups, toilet paper, and paper bags, how many trees would not need to be cut down?

All that is needed is the will to make it happen.

Legalizing hemp may be one of the single most important things we do. The sooner, the better.

Chapter 36

We each have one lifetime to live and twenty-four hours in each day. No one has more. No one has less. One hour in my life equals one hour in your life equals one hour in the life of another.

Why is it that one person in the world labours an hour for thirty cents, another for three dollars and another for three hundred? No life is more valuable than another.

The inequality of pay for labour and the arbitrary value of one currency compared to another allow people in rich countries to exploit the poor ones. One person will work hard and barely survive, while another will thrive living off the labour of others. Generally, throughout the world a day's labour is worth barely enough to buy the food and shelter needed to live that day.

The International Bill of Human Rights says the "Everyone has the just and favourable conditions of work"281, but, while women and children work in Third World sweatshops, corporate executives, in well-furnished offices, are making hundreds of thousands of dollars each from the sweat of their labour, and the corporations are making millions more. The human beings of multinational corporations are profiting from corporate slavery.

Not all corporations are evil. Not all corporate leaders are bad. Some of the people are good and their intentions are good. There are things that are done by the employees of some corporations that are necessary and beneficial to our species, but too few. The motives driving the human beings who work for and run our corporations need to move away from greed and maximum profit towards doing what is good and beneficial for all.

Instead of setting the standard according to the ability of rich nations to buy what they want, how hard would it be to adjust the numbers, the price of food, shelter, the salaries and currencies so that the needs of all are met?

What if time became our standard of commerce, instead of money?

What would happen if one hour of labour equalled one hour of labour, with the power to acquire the same amount of food or shelter, regardless of the nature of the labour or one's location in the world.

If we each do what we can, according to our ability, then one hour of labour should provide each person with the same amount of food and shelter, everywhere, regardless of ability or the task performed?

The United Nation's INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS says that "Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work."282  One hour equals one hour, without discrimination.

People are not unwilling to labour for their well-being but when their well-being is kept from them because they do not possess a piece of a tree with ink on it, or when they suffer while another benefits from their labour, a great injustice is committed. It is simply unfair.

It is time for social and economic justice, time for equality and fairness.

Bank profits are at a record high, foreign multinational corporations operating in Canada are making billions, and Canadian corporations are racking up record profits. Two hundred of Canada's largest corporations earned a total of $6.9 billion dollars over a recent 90 day period.283

With the establishment of the corporate New World Order, the resulting reduction of jobs has meant that low and middle income families have less now than they had ten years ago. The income difference between our wealthy citizens and our poor ones is increasing, as a growing number of people have less and a few have more. Overall, jobs are decreasing and incomes are dropping.284

As corporations take billions of dollars worth of resources and billions of dollars of profit from our economy, they pay virtually no taxes. They justify this by saying that they create jobs; but what are a few hundred jobs, what is a mere twenty or thirty or forty thousand dollars each and the income tax those jobs pay compared to billions of dollars in corporate profit? And what happens as the jobs decrease, as the profits increase? How will we, and our democracy, pay for what needs to be done?

Currently, individuals in our country -- those able to find jobs -- pay almost 50% of their income in personal income tax, sales tax and payroll deductions. How will we pay for the running of our society if fewer and fewer people are working, spending money, or paying taxes?

There needs to be a complete restructuring of our tax system.

Each time shares in a corporation are bought and sold on the stock exchange, each time there is a currency transaction, it should be taxed. At only a few pennies per transaction, the tax revenue would be enormous. Stock, investment and currency transactions amount to millions of dollars every day, conducted by wealthy individuals, corporations and banks, but they are virtually the only business transaction in our society that is completely untaxed.

That needs to change.

Corporate profits are too high and the number of jobs created too low to justify the level of economic assistance that the human beings in our governments give to the human beings in multinational corporations.

Instead of government decisions supporting corporate interests, and instead of government-funded loans to large corporations for corporate development, let us make decisions for the benefit of Canada and all Canadians.

Corporate leaders often threaten us, saying that if we do not give them tax breaks and cheap resources that they will go somewhere else, depriving us of money, jobs, and hurting our economy, but they cannot. The resources are here; if they want them, they will do what is necessary, pay what is necessary, to get them. There is only a finite supply. Much of it is in Canada, our home.

Given a choice, which would we rather do, have a few benefit from the resources which are ours while many suffer in our midst, or have many benefit from the fair distribution of the wealth which is ours?

It is time, now, for the individuals running the multinational corporations to pay their fair share.

By international law, we -- not corporations -- have ultimate control over our own resources and their development or, if we choose, their non-development:

All peoples have: We have the power to decide what to do with them.

Those profiting from access to and use of our resources should pay a resource tax. The more a corporation uses, the more they pay; the more they profit from them, the more they pay.

The resources do not belong to those benefiting from them.

As the human beings running the multinational corporations pay for the right to do business in our midst and to profit at our expense, we would be able to pay for some of the things that we most need to do -- to the benefit of the greater good of all -- like feeding our hungry and unemployed, providing health care and education, taking care of those in our midst who need help and cannot help themselves, and generally working to improve our collective situation. We are not a poor country. Why are we acting as if we are? We can afford these things if we do not give our resources away and if we use them wisely.

As computers, robotics and machines increasingly take over the jobs previously done by human beings, the day is approaching when our food and all else that we produce will be processed, manufactured or built using technology.

I wonder what effect the move towards total automation will have on our species and our economic system. A complete restructuring of our civilization will, no doubt, take place and the economic system, as we know it, will have to be completely redesigned or abandoned.

In our most recent economic model, we have seen our fellow human beings as part of an economic equation. We have been both labour units (the ones doing the work to produce the products) and consumption units (the ones for whom the products were made).

As we worked to produce the goods, we earned money to buy what was produced; then we spent the money, bought the goods, and consumed them.

As fewer and fewer people work, we are still the ones for whom the products are made but fewer people have money to buy them.

In our current economic model, someone without a job is seen as having zero productivity while still consuming food, air and water. In the economic equation, this person has no economic value and is an economic cost. We seem to feel that if a human being is not contributing to the economy that they are of no value to society, that they are of no value at all. They become the throwaway people, the untouchables, the undesirables, the outcasts.

In a totally automated society without labour, there would be no wages; without wages, no money to buy things with. We would not have any means to acquire what we need to live.

If that day comes, we will either grind to a halt, not producing or consuming anything because no one will be able to buy anything; or else those in power will create an intensely oppressive police state to suppress the millions of hungry, angry people demanding the right to food, shelter and all that they need; or else we will evolve and money will cease to be part of the equation and all goods -- mechanically produced -- will be provided free, as needed, and hoarding for personal gain will be punished, severely, because of the wide-spread suffering and harm it creates -- sharing will become the rule.

But the transition to whichever we chose, will not happen suddenly. We will not wake up one day and all of a sudden be there. It will happen one generation at a time, each building the systems and the structures to take us there. Whatever we choose, whether it is the creation of a few large corporate producers, with only a few labourers and many hungry, unemployed people with no way to live, or the creation of an oppressive, police state, or the creation of a society built upon the inner integrity of sharing, working for the wellbeing of all and the advancement of human civilization, it will come about slowly, one day, one decision at a time.

But we will get to wherever we are heading, and we are setting the course, now, today. If we are willing to let someone suffer so we can have what we want, or if we are willing to let another go hungry because someone hoards more than they need, if we are willing to destroy life and that which sustains life in our quest for money, then we have already made our choice.

Where do we go from here?

Assuming we choose wisely, we will have to begin now to shift our focus away from the direction that we have been heading.

If human beings, in the name of a corporation, are causing suffering or destroying that which we need to sustain life, it is time to hold the owners, shareholders, corporate executives and employees responsible for their actions and decisions. If they are destroying life and that which sustains life, they should be put on trial or in jail for crimes against humanity.

If human beings, in the name of corporations, cause suffering or destroy the air, the water, the earth, we need to remove the right of that corporation to exist, to do business in our midst.288

Individuals -- human beings -- are making the decisions. They are responsible for the effects of those decisions.

The suffering they cause and the destruction of life must stop! Now!

There is no acceptable level of destruction.

We must stop ALL industries and activities which we know are harming us. We must stop ALL industries and activities which are questionable or which we think might be harmful in any way.

We must stop now. Not at some future date. Not after years of government studies or scientific debates funded by corporate industry. If it is harmful, if it is questionable, we stop...and then talk about it, think about it, and decide what to do next.

Stopping will not hurt us. Continuing will. If we are prepared to feed and take care of the ones who will no longer have jobs to feed their families, then no harm is done by stopping.

Technology can help us live, survive and thrive, if we have the will to do it and if we focus on what matters most.

There will still be 8 billion people needing to eat every day, needing shelter, water, air, the things of life, but we could spend our lives learning, acquiring knowledge and exploring the depths of human consciousness. If we would only realize that spending our lives acquiring all that we can, even if another has to do without or suffer because of it, makes no sense.

One of the most liberating experiences I have ever had was taking a twenty dollar bill and burning it, not because I have lots of money -- I do not -- but because it reminded me that money is only a piece of a tree with ink on it; it reminded me that there are things that matter more, that people matter more and life matters more. It reminded me that we are destroying all that matters and life itself, and hurting one another, in our quest for money. It was one of the greatest and most unique feelings I have ever had. It put everything back into perspective. The feeling was worth it.

It is illegal, of course, to burn money -- It is an act of liberation and an act of defiance against our cultural programming.

Money is not our god.

Chapter 37

Some say I'm a dreamer,
but I'm not the only one.
Maybe, some day you'll join us,
and the world will be as one.

- John Lennon

We are a new generation.

We will live our lives but once. The time we spend upon the earth and the experiences that we have will never happen again. As free and conscious human beings we can live our lives however we choose to live them. The choice is ours.

Now is our time. These are our lives to live.

As a generation, we are inheriting a lot of problems, a big mess, but we do not need to follow the ways of our forefathers. We do not need to continue creating the mess that we have inherited.

As I look around at what we have created, and the effects produced, I realize that human beings have made some poor choices in the past.

Although I have said it many times before, truly our greatest power, as individuals and as a species, is our power to learn and to change our minds.

It is time to set down the old way. It is time to begin anew.

From the depths of our being, from the depths of what we see, know and understand, we can made wiser choices. We can live our lives according to any focus we create and create anything we can conceive to live.

One generation of enlightened beings, all walking upon the earth at the same time, have the power to change the entire direction of humanity forever.

One generation can change everything.

It is up to us.

Once we realize that the manifestation of our being, every action, every thought, is a choice we make, then we become responsible for all that we become and all that we do. Once we realize that the manifestation of our being is a choice, we become free to do anything we choose, anything we set our minds to do.

If all possibilities were within your grasp, which would you choose to bring into being?

For, the moment we realize that a possibility can happen, by thinking that thought, the possibility is created.

The power of our consciousness, the power of our thoughts, drives us forward.

Whatever we think in our minds sets our direction, our focus, and creates our possibilities. Whatever we think about is manifest through our lives. That is the power of thought, the power of human consciousness.

What would happen if 10,000 people realized that what we think about is what we create? One generation of beings, if they truly see the power of human consciousness would choose to explore it just to see what would happen.

One generation, our generation, here and now, have that power. We are the ones. We are creating our destiny.

Let us go forth from here. What do we want to think about? What matters?

Within the power of our minds exists the possibility for us to manifest our highest vision.

Let us consider our direction and do what we know needs to be done. Let us get out of this mess we are in.

We do not need a New World Order, we need a New World Vision.

The globalization of the planet, ultimately, is not a bad thing if equality , equal access, is ensured. Let us choose the path of least harm and greatest benefit for all, peace and prosperity.

People matter more than things, people matter more than money. The right to life is a birthright.

None should suffer to feed the greed of a few. None should do without so that some can have more than their share.

We need to take care of one another, use what we have wisely, and share what we have with those in need. If we use only what we need and share what we have, there will be abundance for all. There is enough for everyone. Envision eight billion people who own their own future and who have enough to eat.

The time of change is now. Let nothing stand in our way. Let nothing hold us back.

In every area of life, let there be a shift in our focus, in the core of our being.

Whether in law, music, art, education, agriculture, business, science, philosophy, politics, or culture, in every area, good people, each of us doing our part, living our lives, holding our focus on what matters most, thinking our thoughts and making our choices, moment-by-moment, will create a huge simultaneous shift in the direction that we, as a species, are heading.

The ideas of change, of new consciousness, radical thought and action must be present everywhere, making it the singular focus of our lives, putting life and that which sustains life, first, above all else.

See all that you see as clearly as you can. Speak your truth boldly; say what you have to say, honestly, truthfully, and do what needs to be done.

One by one, we make the world a better place. Be true to your being. Create yourself to be whoever or whatever you choose, according to your own inner vision and truth, and do what comes naturally.

A wise man once wrote, "The true progress of mankind on earth is the progress of an inner vision...It is not enough to have more, or even to know more, but to live more.289

Life. Live it fully; live it well. Rejoice in it. Celebrate life and have fun.

Life, all that sustains life, and life the experience -- it is your birthright.

Let us make life our god, honouring it, respecting it and defending it.

For a long time, our species has dreamed of changing course. We have the power, the vision, and the reason to do it.

Let us do it because we can.

The most important events of this day will never be recorded in the history books; the most important events of this generation will take place in the minds and hearts of individuals.

Don't stop asking the questions. Don't stop seeing the possibilities.

Let us walk gently upon the earth and among our fellow beings, doing that which is just and fair.

Let us follow our own vision of our own greatest good, in our way, in our time, here and now; for the good of all in the name of freewill; and let us reason together wisely, for the continuation of life, for peace. So let it be.


General note: The english language does not have any gender-neutral, inclusive singular pronoun. Historically, if the gender of a person is not known, the male pronoun would have been used. (example: Everyone should think about what he is doing). This is unacceptable to me since half of the population is female and should not be automatically excluded because of the grammar of our language.

Therefore, throughout this writing I have chosen to alter the grammar rules by using a plural, inclusive pronoun whenever I have used a singular, inclusive subject. (example: Everyone should think about what they are doing.) If this offends some grammar "purists", that is too bad. I would rather break a rule and offend a few than to exclude half of the population.


1. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), p.469:


2. Rene Descartes, "Meditations on the First Philosophy - Of Truth and Error - 1641 A.D.", A DISCOURSE ON METHOD, MEDITATIONS AND PRINCIPLES, (London: J.M. Dent and Sons, 1975), p.115:


3. Leo Tolstoy, THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS WITHIN YOU, (Lincoln and London: University of Nebraska Press, 1994), p.262.


4. Alexander Cockburn, "Cut Out His Heart, in San Francisco", THE NATION, July 4, 1994, vol.259, (New York), pp.7,8; information also taken from Author's personal notes of a telephone conversation with David Grey of FOOD, NOT BOMBS, January 6, 1996.

The article in THE NATION says that Keith McHenry, although arrested 92 times in continuing police harassment, had not yet been tried or convicted. The article also states that recently they have been charging him with felonies in an attempt to get him put in jail for life under California's new "three strikes and your out" law. According to the report, there are between 6,000 and 15,000 homeless in San Francisco, California.

5. The demonstration and arrests took place on September 10, 1994 on Capitol Hill in Seattle Washington.

6. On August 4, 1996, in Halifax, Nova Scotia, a Commissionaire threatened to call the police because two people were sitting on the grass in the Public Gardens, a violation of a city Bylaw. When asked if the park was public land and whether or not, in a free country, citizens should be allowed to sit on the grass, the commissionaire said that he felt this country is too free and should have fewer freedoms.


7. Associated Press Wire Service, "U.S.'s jail population doubles in last decade", SASKATOON STAR-PHOENIX, May 1, 1995, p.B-5.

8. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), p.476.

9. Andre Picard, "Jury set to consider officers' fate", GLOBE AND MAIL, June 15, 1995, p.A-7:

144. NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, (Toronto: Canadian Nuclear Association, 1996), p.5:

On page 37 of the same report, the Canadian Nuclear Association said that the Unit has been shut down for "re-tubing".

145. The accident took place on June 30, 1983 at CANDU 6 at Embalse Lake, Cordoba, Argentina when the reactor suffered a severe fault. The accident was not reported to the International Atomic Energy Agency until 1988. There was also a report of another incident at the same reactor in 1987, when heavy-water losses shut down the Candu; Joyce Nelson, "Candu Diplomacy," CANADIAN FORUM MAGAZINE, June 1995, p.14.

146. NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, (Toronto: Canadian Nuclear Association, 1996), p.5:

147. "War, nuclear", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.23, (New York: P.F. Collier and Sons, 1996), p.258; Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, p.74.

The United States acquired nuclear weapons in July 1945; Russian in August 1949; the England (UK) in October 1952; France, February 1960; and China, October 1964.

148. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, p.126.

In 1945, the United States had only three bombs. By the 1980, the United States had 37.3% of all the nuclear reactors in the world, largely to support the military's nuclear build-up.

149. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, pp.77, 104-105:

150. "War, nuclear", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.23, p.258.

The figures quoted in the text were the number of nuclear warheads each side agreed to maintain in the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START). At the time, some estimates put the number of nuclear warheads in the two countries at much higher, with the United States possessing an estimated 19,000 and the Soviet Union, 27,000.

Ron Finch in EXPORTING DANGER, (p.74 and 166), wrote:

151. Janne E. Nolan, "U.S. Nuclear Arsenal", BROOKINGS REVIEW, Vol.12, no.2, (Washington: Brookings Institute, 1994), pp.30-33.

In a June 1992 agreement Bush and Yeltsin reached a nuclear arms agreement to reduce the combined total of the two countries to 7,000 weapons, less than one-third the levels established by the 1991 Strategic Arms Reduction Talks. Even though this agreement was made, it has never been ratified by the Russian parliament or implemented.

152. "War, nuclear", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.23, p.258.

Nuclear forces, 1992:

England (UK): 2 submarines carrying polaris SLBM's (Submarine Launched Ballistic Missiles) purchased from USA. The first British submarine carrying trident missiles was launched in March 1992 and was expected to be operational by late 1994. 2 more such submarines were under construction.

France: 4 submarines carrying M-4 SLBM's, as well as 18 intermediate range ballistic missiles, 3 squadrons of Mirage 2000 bombers and 2 squadrons of Mirage IV bombers. 2 additional submarines were under construction.

China: 1 ballistic missile submarine, 8 Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM), and 60 intermediate range ballistic missiles.

153. Janne E. Nolan, "U.S. Nuclear Arsenal", BROOKINGS REVIEW, Vol.12, no.2, (Washington: Brookings Institute, 1994), pp.30-33.

154. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, p.322; NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, (Toronto: Canadian Nuclear Association, 1996), p.33; Woollbert, "Uranium", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.22, pp.750-753.

155. Joyce Nelson, "Candu Diplomacy," pp.13, 15; Fred Knelman, NUCLEAR ENERGY, THE UNFORGIVING TECHNOLOGY.

156. "War, nuclear", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.23, p.258.

157. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, p.74.

158. Francis Misutka and Michael Urlocker, THIS MAGAZINE, vol.28, no. 6, Feb 1995, pp. 22-25. This article is about the history of the Canadian contribution to the Indian explosion; Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, pp.78, 82-84.

It should be noted that Canadian government officials had advanced warning about India's intention to build and test the bomb.

However, Ottawa severed all ties with India after it exploded the bomb but now those reactors have been shut down and need repairs because of problems similar to the problems in the CANDU reactors in Pickering, Ontario. Canadian nuclear specialists have become involved with the repairs in India and are negotiating to sell more CANDU reactors to India:

"AECL, INDIAN OFFICIALS MEET SECRETLY, CTV SAYS", Globe and Mail, April 7, 1995, p.A-2:

159. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, pp.33, 78, 82-84.

160. Ibid., p.90.

161. "Nuclear Power Units by Nation, Worldwide, August 1995", NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, (Toronto: Canadian Nuclear Association, 1996), p.33, 35 (Source: Nuclear Engineering International 1996 Industry Handbook).

162. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, pp.79, 80, 81:

According to "Nuclear Power Units by Nation, Worldwide, August 1995", NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, Canadian Nuclear Association, p.35: "South Korea has 10 reactors with 13 more being planned or under construction; Pakistan has 1; India has 10 with 16 planned or under construction; Taiwan has 6 with 2 more to be built."

163. NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, Canadian Nuclear Association, pp.24, 33.

164. Francis Misutka and Michael Urlocker, THIS MAGAZINE, vol.28, no. 6, Feb 1995, pp. 22-25; NUCLEAR CANADA YEARBOOK 1996, Canadian Nuclear Association, pp.9, 33.

165. Finch, EXPORTING DANGER, pp.82, 127, 128.

166. CBC Radio news, June 13, 1995.


167. CHRISTIAN BIBLE, King James Version (1611 A.D.), Genesis 1:26, 28.

168. The Dalai Lama and JeanClaude Carriere, VIOLENCE AND COMPASSION, (New York: Doubleday, 1996), p.78.


169. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", (San Francisco, 1948), Article 11, paragraph 2.

Canada is a signatory to the United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS and have agreed to abide by the terms of the documents in our domestic and international affairs.

The United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS consists of three parts: (1) the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was passed by the United Nations General Assembly without a dissenting vote on December 10, 1948); (2) the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and (3) the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Both Covenants are part of international law and are binding upon the governments which are signatories to the agreements. The Covenants passed the United Nations General Assembly in 1966 but, for Canada, they did not come into force until August 19, 1976.

170. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights", (San Francisco, 1948), Articles 23(1,3), 25(1):

171. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", (New York, 1966), Article 11(2).


172. Lao-Tzu, TAO TE CHING, Translation by Stephen Mitchell, Published by Harper-Perennial Books (a Division of Harper-Collins Publishing), 1988, Chapter 29. Note: The name TAO TE CHING is usually translated as "The Book of the Way and How it Manifests Itself in the World," or simply, "The Book of the Way."

173. World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987, giving a definition of "Sustainability".

174. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990), pp.204-205.

175. Greenpeace Canada; David Suzuki, TIME TO CHANGE, was the source of information for the following letter, written by Lottie Price, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, published in the Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, April 22, 1995 p.A-4:

176. WORLD ALMANAC AND BOOK OF FACTS - 1997, "World Motor Vehicle Production, 1950-95", Robert Famighetti, Editor, K-III Reference Corporation, 1996, p.246.

177. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, p.189.

178. Ibid.

179. Ibid., pp.204-205.

180. An Environment Service Corp could either be voluntary or, if we wish, required service. In European countries, individuals must spend two years in, either, military or environmental service to their countries. In our country we have never required individuals to serve. Perhaps we would not want to begin requiring mandatory service, even though there is certainly a lot of work to be done. Either way, the choice is ours to make.


181. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990), p.65.

182. "Japan", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.13, (New York: P.F. Collier and Sons, 1996), p.452.

183. World Resources Institute, THE 1994 INFORMATION PLEASE ENVIRONMENTAL ALMANAC, (New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1993), pp. 286-297.

184. "The Cost of Recycling", REITERATE, Recycling Council of British Columbia, (Vancouver, May 1992), p.3.

185. "Governing Garbage", REITERATE, Recycling Council of British Columbia, (Vancouver, April 1993), p.3:

186. Government of Canada, THE STATE OF CANADA'S ENVIRONMENT, (Ottawa: Ministry of the Environment, 1991), p.25-1:

187. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990), p.60.

188. "Governing Garbage", p.3

189. "Governing Garbage", p.9: According to a study by Stanley and Associates.

190. Ibid., p.3

191. Ibid., pp.4, 8, 9:

The business of garbage has gone from a total of $4.5 billion dollars in 1968 to $30 billion in 1992.

During that time, thousands of smaller, local companies were taken over by a small group of larger companies. Today, 11 large multinational waste management corporations control 30% of the industry, with combined revenues of almost $9 billion dollars.

192. Ibid., p.9

193. Ibid., p.3.

194. "The Cost of Recycling", p.7.

195. "Governing Garbage", p.21.

196. "The Cost of Recycling", p.8.

197. "Governing Garbage", pp.2, 5; "The Green Glass Crisis", REITERATE, Recycling Council of British Columbia, (Vancouver, February 1992), p.3; "Making the Most of Too Many Magazines", REITERATE, Recycling Council of British Columbia, (Vancouver, January 1993), p.2, 3:

Governments all over North America and Europe have identified "50% waste reduction" as policy, often setting 2000 as the target year. However, in many places the infrastructure has not been created to adequately divert, recycle or use the materials.

Currently, almost 90% of the glass manufactured ended up in landfills and incinerators.

Magazines and other household papers make up 35% of our waste.

Two and a half billion magazines are distributed in Canada each year (industry estimates). Using an industry conversion factor of one magazine = one pound (Magazine Publishers of America), this translates into 1.14 million TONNES of waste paper, Canada-wide.

198. "Governing Garbage", pp.6, 7, 9, 10.

199. Bruce Little, "The dirt on garbage and waste", GLOBE AND MAIL, May 15, 1995, p.A-11, quoting Statistics Canada, "How-green-is-my-household" study on Canadian recycling habits:

200. "Governing Garbage", p.17

201. Ibid., p.5, 10, 17:

202. FUTURIST Magazine, January/February 1993. (measured in constant dollars.)

203. "The Cost of Recycling", p.8.

204. "Governing Garbage", p.21; "The Cost of Recycling", p.8:

The cost of collecting and recycling is high but the amount paid for the raw recyclable goods is low, discourages recycling.

205. "Governing Garbage", p.21.

206. Ibid.

207. "The Cost of Recycling", p.8.

208. Ibid.

209. "Governing Garbage", p.21.

210. "The Cost of Recycling", p.8.


211. Jean L. McKechnie et al., eds., WEBSTER'S NEW UNIVERSAL UNABRIDGED DICTIONARY, 2nd Edition, (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1983), p.483.

212. Edward Greenspon, "Dissent fails to halt budget bill", GLOBE AND MAIL, June 7, 1995, p.A-3:

For voting against the bill, Warren Allmand was removed as the Chairman of the Canadian House of Commons Judiciary Committee.

213. Susan Delacourt, "MPs' ouster raises question of tolerance", GLOBE AND MAIL, April 7, 1995, p.A-4:

214. CBC Radio News, 14 June 1995; Tu Thanh Ha and Susan Delacourt, "PM threatens to block rebels' candidacy", GLOBE AND MAIL, June 15, 1995, p.A-4.

215. Susan Delacourt, "MPs' ouster raises question of tolerance", GLOBE AND MAIL, April 7, 1995, p.A-4.

216. The Fair Foundation, THE FAIR NEWSLETTER, Vol 1, No. 1, (Victoria, B.C: 1994), p.10.

217. "Direct Democracy - Back to the polis", ECONOMIST, September 17, 1994, pp.63-64:

218. Republic Party, Box 31726, Pitt Meadows, B.C., V3Y-2H1.

219. United Nations General Assembly, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights" (San Francisco, 1948), Article 21(1,3); "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights" (New York, 1966), Article1(1); "International Covenant on Civic and Political Rights" (New York, 1966), Articles 1(1), 25(a).

Canada is a signatory to the United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS and have agreed to abide by the terms of the documents in our domestic and international affairs.

The United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS consists of three parts: (1) the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was passed by the United Nations General Assembly without a dissenting vote on December 10, 1948); (2) the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and (3) the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Both Covenants are part of international law and are binding upon the governments which are signatories to the agreements. The Covenants passed the United Nations General Assembly in 1966 but, for Canada, they did not come into force until August 19, 1976.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights states:

Both the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights say:

The International Covenant on Civil an Political Rights also says:

220. Conference on Security an Co-operation in Europe, HELSINKI ACCORD (1975), Part VIII, paragraph 2. Canada is a signatory to this agreement.


221. United Nations General Assembly, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Civic and Political Rights" (New York, 1966), Articles 9(1,3), 14(2); CONSTITUTION ACT, 1982. Part I, Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Sections 2(c,d), 7, 9, 11(d,e):

Under the Canadian Constitution:

Under international law:

Canada is a signatory to the United Nations' INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS and have agreed to abide by the terms of the documents in our domestic and international affairs.

222. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Civic and Political Rights", Article 14(3)(e):

223. Mr. Justice Peter Cory, Supreme Court of Canada, writing for the majority in a 6-3 decision on March 20, 1997, as reported in "DNA evidence-gathering curbed", GLOBE AND MAIL, March 21, 1997, pp A-1, 7.

224. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, p.475.

The total cost for policing in 1994-1995 was $5.8 billion dollars, accounting for 60% of the costs of our Criminal Justice system.


225. As Quoted by, Oscar Arias Sanchez, former President of Costa Rica and Nobel Peace Prize winner 1987.

226. "U.S. Military Sales and Assistance to Foreign Governments 1991-1994", STATISTICAL ABSTRACTS OF THE UNITED STATES, 1996, (Washington: United States Department of Commerce, 1996), p.356.


228. "National Defense and Veteran Affairs", STATISTICAL ABSTRACTS OF THE UNITED STATES, 1996, Section 11, p.349.

229. CBC Radio News, December 2, 1995.

When President Clinton told United States troops which were going to Sarievo that "they could move with decisive force if threatened," they cheered.

230. "On Brink of Bankruptcy, U.N. makes cuts...but Debt Dampens Reform", UNITED NATIONS CHRONICLE, Spring 1996, Vol.33, No. 1, p.68-69:

According to the STATESMAN'S YEARBOOK 1996-97, (New York: MacMillan Press and St. Martins Press, 1996), p.8, the United States dues make up 25 percent of the total United Nations budget.

231. Douglas Roche, "The West's Nuclear Obduracy", THE TORONTO STAR, November 28, 1995, p.A-2:

(Douglas Roche was Canada's Ambassador for disarmament 1984-89, and is also the author of AN UNACCEPTABLE RISK: NUCLEAR WEAPONS IN A VOLATILE WORLD.)

232. STATESMAN'S YEARBOOK 1996-97, p.4.

Permanent Members of the United Nations Security Council are : United States, China, France, United Kingdom (England), and Russia. They were given this status because they were the major allies who won World War II. (Canada was fighting as part of the United Kingdom).

233. Ibid.

234. Reuters News Service, "U.S. uses UN veto", GLOBE AND MAIL, May 18, 1995, p.A-2.

In the United Nations, the United States has used it veto on the UN Security council 70 times. The United States veto was May 17, 1995, followed debate on

The Security Council resolution called on Israel to rescind its expropriation of Arab land in East Jerusalem. It was the U.S.'s first veto in five years. In May 1990 the U.S. vetoed another resolution over the situation in the Israeli-occupied territories. 235. Graham Fraser, "EU joins Canada in resisting U.S. bills", GLOBE AND MAIL, April 7, 1995, p.A-14: Jay Branegan, "Trading Truce", TIME, April 28, 1997, vol.149, no.17, pp.44-45; Herman, "To do business with Cuba or not to do business with Cuba?", FINANCIAL POST-DAILY, vol. 9(23), March 13, 1996, p.15: NOTES FROM CHAPTER 31:

236. Lao-Tzu, TAO TE CHING, Translation by Stephen Mitchell, (New York: Harper-Collins, 1988), Chapter 61.

The Chinese word TAO is usually translated as "the way"; and TAO TE CHING is translated as "the book of the way" or "the book of the way and how it manifests itself in the world".

(I should say that this particular translation by Stephen Mitchell is my favourite of all the translations I have read.)

237. Government of Canada, "External Expenditures by Type.", PUBLIC ACCOUNTS OF CANADA 1996, (Ottawa: Ministry of Public Works and Government Services, 1996), p. 3.8.

Net expenditures on National Defense is ten billion, six hundred and 93 million dollars ($10,693,000,000), accounting for 6.3 percent of total government expenditures.

238. "Arms Trade in Constant (1992) Dollars 1991-1993," STATISTICAL ABSTRACTS OF THE UNITED STATES, 1996, (Washington: United States Department of Commerce, 1996), p.354.

239. Physicians for Global Survival (Canada), WORLD COURT PROJECT, Report No. 9, January 1996, p.1.

The organization can be contacted at Suite 208 - 145 Spruce Street, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1R 6P1, Telephone (613) 233-1982; FAX (613) 233-9028,
E-mail:, Homepage:

240. STATESMAN'S YEARBOOK 1996-97, (New York: MacMillan Press and St. Martins Press, 1996), pp.5-6:

241. Physicians for Global Survival (Canada), WORLD COURT PROJECT, letter dated June 1995.

Over a hundred nations, meeting at the annual Assembly of the World Health Organization, voted on May 14, 1993, by an overwhelming margin to support the World Court Project; and a majority of nations, meeting at the United Nations General Assembly, voted on December 15, 1994, to send the question to the World Court.

242. Physicians for Global Survival (Canada), WORLD COURT PROJECT, Report No. 10, November 1996, p.5.

243. WORLD COURT PROJECT, Report No. 9, January 1996, p.6.

244. WORLD COURT PROJECT, Report No. 10, November 1996:

The ruling said that the threat of use or use of nuclear weapons, "would generally be contrary to rules of international law applicable in armed conflict."

While the Court also stated that it could not conclude "definitely" on the legality of the threat or use of nuclear weapons "in an extreme circumstance of self-defence, in which the very survival of a State would be at stake," the court did not define any lawful circumstance for nuclear weapon threat or use.

In addition, the Court unexpectedly, and unanimously, endorsed the goal of nuclear disarmament by stating that, in accordance with Article VI of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, an obligation exists on all states party to the Treaty "to pursue in good faith and bring to a conclusion negotiations leading to nuclear disarmament in all its aspects under strict and effective international control."

In its ruling, the Court stated clearly that nuclear weapons are subject to the existing body of international law applicable in armed conflict. This is derived from a variety of sources, including the U.N. Charter, the Hague and Geneva Conventions, other international agreements and customary international practice.

According to the U.N. Charter, all states have the right to use force in self-defence (until the Security Council has taken measures to maintain or restore international peace and security). The Court made it clear, however, that this right is conditional. It is subject to the principles of proportionality and necessity - only those measures that are proportional to the armed attack and are necessary to respond to it are lawful.

In addition the Court confirmed that the provisions of the Hague and Geneva Conventions constitute a system of "international humanitarian law" that must be observed by all states, whether or not they have ratified the conventions themselves. The cardinal principles of this system are that:

The Court also confirmed that the principle of neutrality remains applicable to all states, and thus that belligerent forces must not violate the territory or neutral states.

Finally, the Court concluded that "states must take environmental considerations into account when assessing what is necessary and proportionate in the pursuit of legitimate military objectives." The Court noted that Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions prohibits (for those states that have ratified it) "methods or means of warfare which are intended, or may be expected, to cause widespread, long-term, and severe damage to the natural environment.

These rules also apply to any threat to use nuclear weapons. The Court mad it clear that "if the use of force itself in a given case is illegal - for whatever reason - the threat to use such force will likewise be illegal." Virtually all nuclear plans of the nuclear weapons states must therefore be considered illegal.

245. "War, nuclear", COLLIER ENCYCLOPEDIA, 1996, Vol.23, (New York: P.F. Collier and Sons, 1996), p.246.

246. CHRISTIAN BIBLE, King James Version (1611 A.D.), Micah 4:2-4.


247. "Population by Sex and age," Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, p.82.

The number of youth under 25 years of age is 10,013,200 (33.9% of the population); the number 10-24 years old is 6,027,200 (20.4%).


248. CONSTITUTION ACT, 1982. Part I, Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Section 2(b).

249. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights", ARTICLE 19.

250. Jill Mahoney, "Narcotics legalization urged", GLOBE AND MAIL, May 23, 1997, p.A-8:

251. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), p.467, 476: Canada-wide, "Correctional agencies supervised an average of approximately 146,890 offenders on any given day during 1994-95," in jail or under court appointed supervision.

252. CBC Radio News, February 25, 1997: "Bill Clinton today announced a 16 billion dollar budget for this year to fight the war on drugs."

253. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, p.467. (figures for 1992-93).

NOTES TO CHAPTER 34: 254. Bertrand Russell, "How to Read and Understand History", UNDERSTANDING HISTORY, New York: Philosophical Library, 1957), pp.53-54.

255. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights", Article 26; "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", Article 13:

Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: NOTES FROM CHAPTER 35:

256. THE COLUMBIA HISTORY OF THE WORLD, (New York: Harper & Row, 1981), P.54.

257. Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES - The Authoritative Historical Record of the Cannabis Plant...", Ed. Chris Conrad, Judy Osburn, Lynn Osburn, and Ellen Komp, (Van Nuys, California: HEMP Publishing, 1994), p.2.

258. GAGE CANADIAN DICTIONARY, (Toronto: Gage Publishing Ltd., 1984), p. 170.

259. George Washington, DIARIES OF GEORGE WASHINGTON; also "Letter to Dr. James Anderson, May 26, 1794", WRITINGS OF GEORGE WASHINGTON, (Washington: U.S. government publications, 1931), vol.33, p.433.


261. Ibid., p.7.

262. United States government, U.S. CENSUS RECORDS, 1850.

263. Much of that research was done at the Indian Head Agricultural Research Centre in Saskatchewan where many of the old archives still exist.


265. Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, p. 24:

For the Dupont family of Dupont Chemicals, the Dow family of Dow Chemicals and William Randolph Hearst -- owner of many newspapers throughout the United States -- the potential to make a lot of money existed if the United States shifted its paper production from hemp and other materials to the use of wood.

Hearst -- known as the father of "yellow journalism" and understanding well the power of media propaganda -- began using his newspapers to distort the truth about hemp in an effort to manipulate public opinion and government policy.

Realizing that many understood the importance of hemp, he used the Spanish name for hemp - marijuana - in newspaper articles written to inflame the public. Every mass murderer, every violent crime, everything evil in the world was blamed on marijuana. The public became alarmed and began pressing their leaders to protect them from this danger in their midst.

So, allies of the Dupont family in the United States Congress were able to pass the MARIJUANA TAX ACT outlawing Cannabis Sativa, otherwise known as marijuana, otherwise known as hemp. Without even knowing it, the people had pressed their leaders to outlaw a plant which they knew was of great use to them, all because of the misuse of the power of the media to inform and the greed of a few men who lacked integrity.

266. Southam Magazine and Information Group, CORPUS ALMANAC, 1997 CANADIAN SOURCEBOOK, 32nd Ed., (Don Mills, Ont: Southam, 1996), p. 4.6:

In 1995, exports of forest products totalled $41.3 billion.

According to Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), p.326, Canada's exports of forest products are almost 20% of the $112 billion international market.

267. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), p.324, 326, 352; REITERATE, "Canada's Challenge...", Recycling Council of British Columbia, January 1993, p.9; Southam Magazine and Information Group, CORPUS ALMANAC, 1997 CANADIAN SOURCEBOOK, 32nd Ed., (Don Mills, Ont: Southam, 1996), p. 4.7:

In 1995, 9.2 million TONNES of newsprint valued at $8.3 billion was exported (7.0 million TONNES of which went to the United States); the total amount of pulp exported was 10.7 million TONNES valued at $10.7 billion (of which 4.6 million TONNES were shipped to the U.S.).

268. Statistics Canada, CANADA YEARBOOK 1997, (Ottawa, Ontario: Government of Canada, 1997), figure 11.9 (source: Statistics Canada, CANSIM, matrix 6086, p. 334:

For the four years from 1990-1993, Canadian forestry cuts (in hectares) were as follows:

YearTotal cutClearcut% clearcut

The area harvest in Canada between 1990 and 1994 averaged 916,551 hectares annually and in 1994, an estimated 182 million cubic meters of roundwood was cut, according to Southam Magazine and Information Group, CORPUS ALMANAC, 1997 CANADIAN SOURCEBOOK, 32nd Ed., (Don Mills, Ont: Southam, 1996), pp. 4.5, 4.6:

269. World Resources Institute, Washington, D.C., 1997, as reported by Vicki Allen of Reuters News Service, and CBC Radio News, "The World at Six," March 4, 1997.

The following is the complete text of the story:

270. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990),p.153.

271. Southam Magazine and Information Group, CORPUS ALMANAC, 1997 CANADIAN SOURCEBOOK, 32nd Ed., (Don Mills, Ont: Southam, 1996), p. 4.5.

272. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990), p.152.

273. Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, p.10, quoting from Dewey and Merrill, Bulletin #404, U.S. Department of Agriculture., 1916.

274. Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, December 11, 1996, p.D-1.

Of the 72 million barrels of oil used worldwide, 17.5 million are used by the United States.

275. David Israelson, SILENT EARTH, The Politics of Our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking, Penguin Books, 1990), pp.7, 123.

276. Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, pp.45-46.

277. Norman Gidney, "Methanol Cars Making Debut in Victoria", VICTORIA TIMES-COLONIST, Feb 7,1995, p.B-10:

278. POPULAR MECHANICS, December 1941; See also Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, pp.45, 50.

279. Jack Herer, THE EMPEROR WEARS NO CLOTHES, p.43.

280. Ibid., pp.37-41.


281. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights", Articles 23(1); and the "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", Article 7(b), says:

282. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "Universal Declaration of Human Rights", Articles 23(2): In another part of the International Bill of Human Rights, the "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", Article 7 (a), it says: 283. Andrew Bell and Diana Clifford, "Firms rack up record profits", GLOBE AND MAIL, May 13, 1997, pp.B-1, B-8: The fifty-five largest companies dealing in natural resources earned quarterly profits of $1.05 billion dollars; the seven major banks, $1.76 billion dollars.

284. David Ross, Executive Director of the Canadian Council on Social Development, "Measuring social progress, starting with the well-being of Canada's children, youth and families," a paper delivered at "Canada's Children...Canada's Future", a national conference held November 25, 1996, in Ottawa, Ontario:

Alanna Mitchell, "Rich, poor wage gap widening", GLOBE AND MAIL, May 13, 1997, P.A-13; quoting from Statistics Canada, "Income After Tax, Distributions by Size in Canada", (Ottawa: Government of Canada, 1997), publication no. 13-213-XPB: According to the Statistics Canada Report, the wealthiest 20 percent of Canadians received $21 for every $1 received by the poorest 20 percent. The Federal agency says poor families have been hit relatively harder by corporate lay-offs during recessions, leading to greater inequality of incomes.

A different Statistics Canada report, "A portrait of Families in Canada", (Ottawa: Statistics Canada, 1993), Cat. no 89-523E, pp.34-35, said:

The Canadian Government in the House of Commons, "1997 Budget Speech", delivered by Paul Martin, Minister of Finance, February 18, 1997, (Ottawa: Government of Canada, 1997), p.22, stated:
285. Conference on Security an Co-operation in Europe, HELSINKI ACCORD (1975), Part VIII, paragraph 2.

286. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", Article 25; "International Covenant on Civic and Political Rights", Article 47.

287. United Nations, INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS, "International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights", Article 1(2); "International Covenant on Civic and Political Rights", Article 1(2).

288. There is legal precident for establishing laws to control environmental damage and to charge or shut down offenders but the laws are almost never enforced. David Israelson, in his book SILENT EARTH - The Politics of our Survival, (Markham, Ont: Viking/Penguin Books, 1990), p.112, 113, 148-149, wrote:


289. Juan Mascaro in the introduction to BHAGAVAD GITA, Translated by Juan Mascaro, (London: Penguin Books, 1962), p.38.

Appendix 1


In order to understand the power our government has to suppress information and keep personal files on us, one must follow a long paper trail through a complex web of four different laws passed by parliament: the STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT, which deals with government orders and regulations, the PRIVACY ACT, which authorizes the keeping of personal information files, the ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT, popularly referred to as the Freedom of information Act, and the CANADIAN SECURITY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE ACT, which created CSIS and gives it authorization to gather undercover intelligence information.

Because each of these four Acts continually refer to regulations and definitions in the other Acts, the power of our government to suppress information is not clearly spelled out in one location but is hidden in a maze of laws. While reading one Act, one must continually refer to the other Acts in order to understand the complete picture.

I am going to quote extensively from these laws in order to show the power which the human beings running our government have to keep government secrets, gather information on individuals and then suppress access to that information.

It may be a lot to read but it is worth the time to read it.

The STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT defines what is a government action or decision, lists the rules under which those statutory instruments must be disclosed or published, and lists the circumstances under which exceptions can be made to the rules.

A statutory instrument is "any rule, order, regulation, ordinance, direction, form, tariff of costs or fees, letters, patent, commission, warrant, proclamation, by-law, resolution, or other instrument, issued, made or an Act of Parliament" or by someone granted power through an Act of Parliament.1 In addition, under the law, a statutory instrument includes any of the above issued by the Cabinet, even if the power to issue it is not granted through an Act of Parliament.

As far as publication or disclosure of our government actions and decisions, the STATUTORY INSTRUMENT ACT says "every regulation shall be published in the CANADA GAZETTE", which is the official public record for the Government of Canada.

As far as disclosure to our elected representatives in parliament, the Act says that "every statutory instrument issued...[shall be] referred to any Committee...of Parliament that may be established for...reviewing and scrutinizing statutory instruments".2

However, the Act gives the Cabinet the power to make many exceptions and lists many circumstances under which the rules of disclosure do not need to be followed.

By issuing an Order in Council, the Cabinet can make regulations that are exempt from publication, public access, or disclosure to Parliament.3

Some of the exceptions make sense, but overall, the powers of the cabinet to keep secrets and suppress information is immense.

Moreover, the Act is written in such a general way, that almost anything that the human beings running our government do not want us to know can be suppressed, opening up the possibility for abuse of power by those who call themselves our leaders.

The Cabinet may exempt from publication or public access any Order or regulation, which if published, might:

Now this is where the paper trail begins because, within the STATUTORY INSTRUMENT ACT, the definition of what the above paragraphs mean is written in a different law, the ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT.

Moreover, "injurious to the conduct" of our government's affairs is never defined. What the human beings running our government consider injurious could be nothing more than receiving negative media coverage about a decision. If such were the case, then our federal cabinet could legally suppress any information that might create a negative public reaction, saying that releasing the information would be "injurious to the conduct" of our government's affairs.

Also exempted from publication is,

This section is used to quietly issue Orders in Council when the human beings in our federal cabinet use their powers to make special exceptions or exemptions for individuals. When our federal cabinet does things like exempting individuals from paying income taxes or import taxes, or having to follow regulations that most people must follow, they use this part of the law to keep the decisions quiet. Not all Canadians receive the same treatment under the law.

A regulation can also be withheld which would:

Basically, if an order, regulation or other statutory instrument, by being published, would bring hardship or other negative effect to an individual or organized group, the cabinet can keep it secret.

I cannot help but wonder whether or not this section would be used by the cabinet, politicians or a political party to suppress information which, if known, would open them up to criticism.

Like so many laws passed by our parliament, the STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT gives the federal cabinet the power to make changes to the regulations within the Act itself.

After defining the rules to be followed for all statutory instruments, orders, regulations and government decisions, the STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT, then, in three pages, lists all the areas of the Act under which the cabinet may make changes to this Act by Orders in Council, without debate or a vote of our elected representatives in Parliament.

The Act which gives the cabinet the power to withhold, suppress, or to deny public access to government Orders, decisions and regulations, also gives the Cabinet power to change the rules by which they do it, giving them the power to alter almost every part of the Act itself.6

By Order in Council, the cabinet can change which government regulations are required to be published, which are not, what information can be withheld from public access and the reasons why something would not be disclosed. They have the power to regulate the disclosure or non-disclosure of information and to make the decisions behind closed doors.

In fact, after many paragraphs listing the sections of the Act that the Cabinet has the power to change, the last sentence of the Act includes this all-encompassing power:

In other words, when it comes to the rules and regulations under which information concerning our government's decisions or actions can be suppressed, they can make any rule they wish to make, keep secret anything they want to keep secret, and it is legal.

The government power of secrecy is immense.

As I stated in chapter 9, the PRIVACY ACT authorizes our government to establish "personal information banks" on individuals, storing information regarding:

The federal cabinet has the power under the PRIVACY ACT to designate some personal information banks as "exempt banks". An exempt information bank contains information about individuals which the government does not want to disclose publicly or to the individual on whom the information is kept. So, what sorts of information do sections 21 and 22 describe that would make it part of an exempt information bank? Before continuing with the PRIVACY ACT, here is what the ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT SAYS Now, continuing with section 21 of the PRIVACY ACT: As I said at the beginning of this appendix, in order to understand our governments power to suppress information and keep secret files on us, one must follow a long paper trail through the laws passed by our government. Here is what the ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT says: The reason I emphasized (d) relates to what I wrote in Chapter 8, that advocating a change in our government system or our constitution through any means other than through the narrowly prescribe rules set up by the human beings running our country is a criminal offense.

This means that under the PRIVACY ACT and the ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT, the government is empowered to keep secret files on anyone working for governmental change within our country, even if they are nonviolent and do not advocate violence, which, in a democracy, should be legal and which should not give our government the authority to spy on us or keep secret files on us.

Now, back to the PRIVACY ACT and the sections listing the types of information for which the Cabinet is authorized to establish exempt personal information banks on individuals.

The PRIVACY ACT uses the same conditions which authorizes CSIS to exist as sufficient grounds for the Federal Cabinet to keep private files on individuals and to not disclose their existence or provide access to them.16

The CANADIAN SECURITY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE ACT, defines "Threats to the security of Canada" as: Now there are those who would say that our government needs to have the power to conduct investigations into the activities of individuals, deemed "dangerous" to the government, but under the PRIVACY ACT, The Privacy Act is not just talking about formal police investigations. It also includes:

(a) anything related to the administration of any bill passed by parliament or any investigation authorized by an Act of Parliament;

(b) any secret, non-disclosed, or non-published investigations ordered by the cabinet through Orders in Council;

and, (c) "any class of investigations specified in the regulations".

Under the PRIVACY ACT, the cabinet has the power, by issuing an Order in Council, to change the regulations of the Act itself, including the power to

Basically, they can empower a government department to do an investigation, and specify the types of investigations which can be carried out. They can define who and what gets investigated, and by whom.

The cabinet defines what is considered a formal investigation under the powers of this Act.

NOW HERE IS THE IMPORTANT PART. All "investigations" and every other circumstance listed above are the circumstances under which the cabinet can legally exempt "personal information banks" from disclosure and keep them secret. Obviously, since the cabinet has the power to define the investigations, they can investigate whomever they choose to investigate for whatever reason they desire, political or otherwise, and keep the information secret.

Moreover, by changing all the other regulations covered by the PRIVACY ACT, they have the power to change the rules by which they keep secret any information on individuals that they choose, AND IT IS LEGAL.

And, while the PRIVACY ACT says that,

this means that human beings working for any government institution, doing whatever it is set up to do, are authorized to gather whatever information they need to gather to do it. That, of course, includes the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS).

The human beings who call themselves our leaders have broad, sweeping powers to gather information on us and keep secret files on Canadians.

When a person, under the PRIVACY ACT requests to see their own file or the information it contains,

Not surprisingly, like many laws passed by Parliament, the PRIVACY ACT also gives the cabinet the power to change the regulations of the PRIVACY ACT itself.

By issuing Orders in Council, the cabinet can change the regulations concerning which government agencies can investigate us, what personal information is kept, where it is kept, how it is used, whether or not we have access to the information, the rules of that access, and what information is kept secret.22

Without consulting Parliament, without any debate or vote of our elected representatives, or any other open, democratic process, the human beings running our country can spy on us and keep personal information files on us and change the rules of secrecy that they follow -- and they do not even have to tell us what they are doing, these men and women who call themselves our leaders.


1. Canada, House of Commons, STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS ACT, 1970-71-72, c.38, s.1, R.S.C., S-22, Sections 2.

2. Ibid., Section 11, 19.

3. Ibid., Section 19, 20.



6. Ibid., Section 20 (a) to (m).

7. Ibid., Section 20 (m).

8. Canada, House of Commons, PRIVACY ACT, 1980-81-82-83, C.111, Sch. II, R.S.C. P-21, (Ottawa: Government of Canada), Section 3.

9. Ibid., Section 18 (1).

10. Ibid., Section 18 (2).

11. Ibid., Section 21.

12. Canada, House of Commons ACCESS TO INFORMATION ACT, 1980-81-82-83, c.111, Sch.1, R.S.C. A-1, Section 15(2).

13. PRIVACY ACT, Section 21.


15. PRIVACY ACT, Section 22.

16. PRIVACY ACT, Sections 18(1), 21, 22.

17. CANADIAN SECURITY INTELLIGENCE SERVICE ACT, Section 2. 18. Ibid., Section 22(3)

19. PRIVACY ACT, Section 77.

20. PRIVACY ACT, Section 4.

21. Ibid., Section 14, 16.

22. PRIVACY ACT, Section 77

The powers of the cabinet to change the regulations of this Act by Order in Council, include the powers to

Appendix 2


In their corporate brochure, they offer: Clandestine Warfare, Combat Air Patrol, Basic and Advanced Battle Handling, Armoured warfare, and Sniper Training.

They promise to combat and destroy "terrorist enemies of the state"; to restore internal security; and to help build and maintain an economic climate where investment could be allowed to flourish.

Executive Outcomes (EO) is a multinational, incorporated, private mercenary army that will contract to move in and wage full-scale war on behalf of its client, the best-known of a growing number of private companies offering military-related services to governments and corporations throughout the world.

One of the company's commanders, Lt. Col. Pine Pienaar, told MacLean's magazine that he "regards himself as a corporate troubleshooter. 'I don't consider myself a mercenary. We have a client with a certain need. Our business is training armies.'"

"Executive Outcomes is a business, and we're in it, of course, for the money," explained Brigadier Ben Sachse, another of the company's commanders.

The company was created in 1989 by Eeben Barlow. It was first registered as a corporation in England (U.K.) in 1993 but is now incorporated in the Bahamas.

Barlow had been a commander in the notorious 32nd battalion of the South African Special Forces which was used to ensure the continuation of South Africa's apartheid regime. The battalion was was once honoured for having the highest "kill rate" of any unit in the South African Army.

After fighting in South Africa's border wars in the 1970s, Barlow moved into intelligence and became an agent in the Civil Cooperation Bureau (CCB). The CCB was the covert assassination and espionage unit formed by South Africa's military intelligence to target and eliminate enemies of the white minority-ruled state.

The CCB sent Barlow to Western Europe, where his tasks purportedly included spreading disinformation about Nelson Mandela's African National Congress and setting up front companies to evade sanctions and sell South African weapons abroad.

By the time the CCB death squads were exposed in 1990 under President F. W. deKlerk, Barlow had already established Executive Outcomes as a "counterintelligence consulting Company".

Barlow set about to build his army, hiring between 1,000 and 2,000 soldiers (estimates vary), most of whom were highly-trained, former elite commando combat veterans who had served for fifteen to twenty years in South Africa's most notorious counterinsurgency units.

In its promotional literature, the corporation boasts that its workforce consists of battle-hardened soldiers with "five thousand man-years of combat experience."

As Special Forces soldiers, many of them had been involved in guerrilla operations in Namibia, Angola and Mozambique while in the South African Army. Others had been under-cover operatives in the war against anti-apartheid activists in Europe and South Africa.

The EO fighters consist of a collection of former spies, political assassinations, Air Force pilots, and crack bush guerrillas, under the command of white South African Officers and a white Rhodesian brigadier from Barlow's old 32nd Battalion.

For elite commandos, who had reason to fear prosecution for apartheid-era political crimes, EO provided a golden parachute into exile with salaries -- between $2,000 and $7,000 a month -- three times higher than those of the national army.

With no idealogy other than profit, they are widely recognized as Africa's masters of guerrilla warfare, up-scale mercenaries who have turned to the private sector to sell their expertise to the highest bidder.

The company's first major contract was in 1992 in Angola, with the ex-marxist government of Jose Eduardo dos Santos. The soldiers were hired to capture Soyo, one of the centres of the Angolan oil industry, which was under the control of rebels from the National Union for the Total Independence of Angola (UNITA).

The contract surprised many since South Africa had vigorously fought to destabilize Angola since the mid-1970s.

The South African Defense Forces, including all of Executive Outcome's employees, had fought along side of UNITA, which was being supplied and supported by the apartheid-era South African government, against the government of Angola. Now they were being employed by a government they had once worked to defeat, fighting with the government against the UNITA rebels.

At what price came this change of loyalty? "$20 million a year, plus $20 million for weapons and equipment," Barlow told the ECONOMIST. However, MACLEAN'S Magazine put the price at $55 million.

At the request of the Angolan government, Executive Outcomes then provided a larger mercenary force, in exchange for oil concessions worth $40 million dollars a year.

Employing 500 men, they turned the course of the war in Angola within months, killing over 500 rebels.

The mercenaries pushed the rebels away from the oil fields, key mining centres, participated in the government's recapture of the diamond areas of Cafunfo in eastern Angola and Cacolo, an important diamond town.

Critics of the company say that its real aim has nothing to do with establishing peace or democracy to troubled areas. Rather, they say, the company is more interested in securing petroleum, and mining areas in nations rich in resources for its own profit and for other multinational corporations.

The company's track record supports this view.

When Executive Outcomes went into Sierra Leone, in May 1995, the majority of foreign humanitarian-aid workers in Sierra Leone believed that the South Africans' actual mission was to extract and export the countries diamond wealth.

Executive Outcomes promised to restore law and order, in exchange for $15 million and a share of the country's coveted diamond mines.

Not surprisingly, during the campaign, Executive Outcomes' military forces were focused in Kono, the rich diamondmining province two hundred miles east of the capital where the company had been given a diamond concession.

When they arrived in Sierra Leone, the force came equipped with two M-117s and an M-124 Hind -- Russian helicopter gunships similar to American Apaches -- a radio intercept system, two Boeing 727s to transport troops and supplies, an Andover casualty-evacuation aircraft, and fuelair explosives, bombs that suck out oxygen upon detonation, killing all life within a square-mile radius. The men were outfitted in Sierra Leonian uniforms and supplied by the Sierra Leonian military with three armoured personnel carriers fitted with 30-mm cannons and six Land Rovers mounted with anti-aircraft guns, as well as ammunition, artillery, and Kalashnikovs.

According to HARPER magazine, Executive Outcomes' soldiers used "overwhelming force, killing hundreds of rebels, while only two EO employees were killed.

Martha Carey, an American who worked for Doctors Without Borders, recalled that during the early days of EO's presence in Sierra Leone, she had only to see their helicopters flying over her house to know that it was time to rush to the hospital and prepare for an influx of wounded. The pilots, she said, were racist killers with no interest in the country.

Executive Outcomes' first priority is business. "We are a commercial venture," Nic Van Den Bergh, the company's chief executive told U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT, "We are not an aid agency."

Part of a network of 80 companies in more than 30 countries (including Canada) on three continents, Executive Outcomes' war machine is a part of a growing empire of multinational corporations which specialize in high-profit operations to extract petroleum, minerals and other natural resources in high-risk environments.

A Corporation called, Strategic Resources Corporation, is an umbrella holding company of which Barlow is a board member. Strategic Resources Corporation has been creating multinational Corporations in England (U.K.), South Africa and other countries, at the rate of about ten a year.

These multinational corporations, of which Executive Outcomes is but one, are involved in everything from oil drilling, gold and diamond mining, telecommunications, weapons sales and army supplies, mercenary armies, security guards, land-mine deactivation, to water drilling and purification.

In a incestuous relationship of multinational corporations where the exact ownership of a corporation by other corporations is difficult to trace, what is apparent is that Executive Outcomes is fighting wars and providing military might to secure the right of corporations to do business.

According to international press reports, the holding company that owns EO also owns 40 percent of a firm called Branch Mining and Energy. However, U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT says that the Britishbased Branch Mining and Energy is primarily owned by a larger Canadian-based company called DiamondWorks.

The question of an actual corporate connection between EO and Branch Energy is more elusive. A recent United Nations report on mercenaries quotes a letter from Britain that says EO is affiliated with Branch, and Canadian geological consultants hired by DiamondWorks (then called Carson Gold Corp.) called Executive Outcomes, "Branch's parent company" in documents filed with the Vancouver Stock Exchange.

Branch Mining and Energy is the corporation which negotiated diamondmining concessions as partial payment for Executive Outcomes' miliary assignment in Sierra Leone.

According to HARPER'S magazine, Branch Mining and Energy was founded by an English Entrepreneur named Anthony Buckingham, a veteran of the British Special Air Service, who is believed to be a member of Executive Outcome's board of directors.

Buckingham is also the founder and chief executive of Heritage Oil and Gas Corporation (U.K.), which has petroleum interests in Angola. It was Buckingham who first negotiated with Barlow to have EO soldiers fight in Angola, and it was Buckingham who encouraged Valentine Strasser, then president of Sierra Leone, to hire Executive Outcomes' army to intervene in that country.

When Sierra Leone's president couldn't pay the $15 million dollar fee that Executive Outcomes wanted, Buckingham agreed to finance the military operation himself, in exchange for a diamond concession at Koidu, near the border with Liberia.

Don Boroughs, in U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT, wrote:

When MACLEAN'S asked Barlow about the barter deal of diamond concessions for Buckingham and Branch Energy, all he said was, "We are a business."

"Everywhere EO goes, Branch Energy is picking up a diamond concession," says Jeffrey Moag of the National Security News Service.

The United Nations report on mercenaries explored such connections as well, noting that once a firm like EO is able to establish security in an area, it

Once Executive Outcomes' army secures the diamond areas, another company related to EO under the corporate holding company, Lifeguard Corporation, offers private security to the multinational companies operating in the area.

Africa may seem a long distance from Canada but Executive Outcomes has several Canadian corporations as clients.

In addition to DiamondWorks, the GLOBE AND MAIL reported that Canadian oil company, Ranger Oil, has used EO personnel to protect their oil interests in Angola.

The NEW INTERNATIONALIST reported that another Canadian Oil Company, Arakis International has contracted with Executive Outcomes to provide armed mercenaries to fight in Sudan so that they can build a $93 million dollar oil pipeline from the Bentiu oil fields in Southern Sudan to the Red Sea coast. The report said that once the deal was announced, "Arakis shares jumped in value." and that "the Southern Sudanese appear powerless at present to prevent their oil reserves from being exploited by Arakis International and the NIF regime in Khartoum."

Barlow says his company has six other contracts in Africa and may soon expand outside the continent but that they will work only for "legitimate governments", or on projects that they approve.

If "legitimate governments" means merely whoever controls the palace, and if "projects that they approve" means whichever multinational corporate interest will pay their fee, then, in the interests of corporate profitability, they have enormous latitude to wage war.

Critics see Executive Outcomes growth and the growth of other multinational "security" companies as a troubling trend in the post-Cold War era.

Unlike with a United Nations or American force, the human beings running Executive Outcomes are not accountable to anyone but their shareholders. They are accountable to no nation and no legal body. Their law is the marketplace. And if the economic new world order should require Executive Outcomes to sell its services to a new kind of client, there isn't much to prevent it.

"Responsibility for global peace and security cannot be diverted to a private body, a mercenary outfit which is beyond the control of governments, purely commercial in its undertaking," says Jakkie Cilliers, director of the Institute for Defence Policy in Johannesburg.

It is akin to the privatization of warfare.

In exchange for millions of dollars, the company offers to take sides, deploy overwhelming force, and fire "preemptively" on its contractually-designated enemy.

"Today, they're here to defend you; tomorrow, these forces will be there to overthrow you," said South Africa's Deputy Foreign Minister Aziz Pahad, citing the example of Angola and the UNITA rebels.

With no loyalty to any ideology but money, EO's employees have no one to answer to but themselves.

"If you're killing for your government, your people, your fatherland, you have some loyalty," an EO soldier told HARPER'S magazine, "but if you're no longer killing for you government or your country, you're a murderer. So what does that make me?"

The phrase "privatization of violence" attempts to describe a shift out of the age of global politics into the age of global economics, in which trade outranks ideology.

In his book THE TRANSFORMATION OF WAR, published in 1991, Martin Van Creveld predicts a shift in the nature of war, where governments will no longer have a legal "monopoly over armed violence," and that, "as used to be the case until at least 1648, military and economic functions will be reunited."

He writes that individual profit will again become legitimate objectives of war and that "much of the day-to-day burden of defending society against the threat of lowintensity conflict will be transferred to the booming security business; and [that] indeed the time may come when [those] organizations will...take over the state."

Historically, when Europeans were conquering and colonizing the world, both government and private armies cleared the way for European businessmen and trading companies to pursue commercial interests in the conquered countries.

The European governments would then grant the right of these businesses - companies like the Hudson Bay Company, the British South African Company, and the East Indian Trading Company -- to do business in the colonies. They, in turn, made great sums of money while supporting the treasury of their country back home.

The current arrangement in Africa is similar to that old world order in the days of colonial conquest. Executive Outcomes is fighting with guns, killing local populations, to ensure that multinational corporations from far away have the right to do business there, guaranteeing a profit of the corporation and benefitting the economy of the home country where it is based.

Barlow has managed to dress up the old idea of white dominance on the African continent in the new rhetoric of the global marketplace.

So today, in places like Sierra Leone, the newly elected president of the country, Ahmed Tejan Kabbah's primary partnership is not with the people who elected him but with a multinational corporation, one that secures his power with force and paves the way for other foreign investment to fill the government coffers.

And, Executive Outcomes fee is paid with money from the International Monetary Fund that was originally intended to help the people of that country. Instead of helping the people of Sierra Leone, international loan and aid money is paying to wage war against them and to ensure the future exploitation of their resources by foreign multinational corporations.

Even as the government gets richer and the foreign corporations profit, the benefit from the resources never seem to reach the people to whom that country is home.

The "privatization of violence" reflects a new trend. In Colombia, British Petroleum has hired a battalion of Colombian soldiers to guard against guerrilla attacks. In Haiti, former soldiers have been consigned by the wealthy to form private family forces. In Liberia, industrial gangs are employed by foreign corporations to extract natural resources. Government armies will of course do the same, as the United States did to protect its oil interests in the Persian Gulf. At the urging of the United States, Croatia hired Military Professional Resources Inc. -- a private firm of retired U.S. generals, based in Alexandria, Virginia -- to prepare the Croation Army for a counteroffensive against the Serbs in the summer of 1995. (MPRI, as the firm is known, is now training the Bosnians and is reported to have picked up EO's contract in Angola.)

In the GLOBE AND MAIL, Lafras Luitingh, Executive Outcomes' deputy chairman said that the company goes in and solves problems on a "more confidential basis....There are a lot of people who don't like what we do....but that doesn't take away the fact that we are effective and solve problems."

The British human-rights group International Alert condemns their human rights abuses, calling Executive Outcome's employees "an assortment of former assassins, spies, saboteurs and scoundrels."

Malik Chaka a spokesperson for the UNITA rebel group in Angola asks, "If Brazil [or some other country] intervened in Angola on the side of the government and committed human-rights violations, we could go to the U.N. to protest. Who do you complain to when these independent operators are there?"


The information contained in Appendix 2, THE PRIVATIZATION OF VIOLENCE was taken substantially from:

Elizabeth Rubin, "An Army of One's Own", HARPER'S, February 1997, pp.44-55; Philip Winslow, "The business of war", MACLEAN'S, November 6, 1995, p.36; Newslink Africa, "Explosive outcomes", NEW INTERNATIONALIST, March 1997, p.6; Don Boroughs, "Have gun, will prop up regime", U.S. NEWS AND WORLD REPORT, January 20, 1997, pp.46-48; "We're the good guys these days", ECONOMIST, July 29, 1995, p.32; Inigo Gilmore, "Mercenaries forced back to the drawing board", GLOBE AND MAIL, April 3, 1997, p.A-10, with appreciation to the authors for their articles.

Appendix 3


There is growing impatience with companies that continue to damage the environment and with companies which flood the market with products which are not reusable, recyclable or which are not made with recycled materials.

The human beings running our governments are enthusiastic about encouraging consumers to recycle more and discard less, but they are more indifferent about taking strong action to reduce the amount of waste introduced into the community by industry. The designers, manufacturers and distributors of products that become waste have had very few constraints put on their freedom to impose on our publicly-owned or publicly-paid-for waste management systems.

When governments leaders do make efforts to regulate packaging or disposable products, their efforts are met with strong resistance by the industries affected. Industries are spending a lot of money fighting such proposals: $5.3 million dollars in a campaign against a packaging referendum in Massachusetts, and another $2 million against a similar one in Oregon.

The concept of Industry Stewardship challenges the assumption that the community-at-large bears responsibility for cleaning up after industries that distribute disposable consumer products.

Industry Stewardship programs would remove current government subsidies for waste disposal, shifting that burden, for the first time, off the backs of taxpayers, directly onto the producers of products that become waste and upon the consumers who use the products.

In its broadest meaning, Industry Stewardship suggests that producers are responsible for their products throughout the entire life-cycle of those products, from the extraction of the raw materials all the way through to their final disposal or recycling once they become waste. They are responsible for the effects of all that they do and all that they produce.

Product manufacturers need to be directly accountable for their solid waste and for the pollutants they put into the air or into the water.

The basis for the "polluter pays principle", is not just economic but ethical, relieving the taxpayer of a burden which is more appropriately borne by the producers and consumers of pollution and waste-producing products.

But more than that, by removing the opportunity to down-load these costs onto the environment and the community, and by obliging manufacturers to "internalize" these costs, the costs become a built-in incentive for both producers and consumers to reduce waste and manage it more efficiently.

The Polluter Pays principle holds that industries should "internalize environmental costs and reflect them in the prices of products", assume "cradle to grave" responsibility for disposable products that they sell, and be held responsible for the cost of managing their own wastes.

Economists are calling for economic and legal instruments based upon "full cost accounting". The basis of these policies calls for all costs of resource depletion, environmental impact, and waste management practices to be built into the price of all products.

The problem is that no one knows for sure what those costs are.

A major barrier to the development of government policy based on "full cost accounting" is the lack of a universally-accepted method for "life cycle analysis". There is no universally-accepted method for measuring environmental costs or social costs, or translating them into numbers that can be compared.

As we try to count everything, try to put everything into a number that we can compare -- the primary one being the dollar -- how do we put a number on life and those things which sustain life? How do we calculate a dollar figure on the damage that we are doing? How do we decide how much damage is acceptable and tolerable -- as if life has a price? Can that really be translated into a figure at the cash register?

The "precautionary approach" says that avoiding risk to the environment should be the top priority, that it is better for government and industry to be too cautious than to be not cautious enough.

The precautionary principle holds that the burden of proof is on industry or the producer of a product to demonstrate that its proposed practice has less negative environmental impact than the practice favoured by government on the basis of available evidence.

The British Columbia government issued a White Paper in April 1992 with recommendations for a new Environmental Protection Act (EPA) which created a conceptual framework for policy. Recommendation 18 of that paper said, that the new act,

There is an emerging policy direction, especially in Europe and Canada, to shift the cost of waste management and recycling from local governments to industry, and governments are devising new legislative tools to encourage this.

In Europe the development of full Industry Stewardship has included programs where wastes go back to their source through reverse distribution or collection programs provided for and supported by industry.

In Germany, a strict 1990 "Packaging Directive" put the responsibility for waste packaging onto retailers and their suppliers. The law stipulates that the recycling of packaging must be organized outside of the public waste stream and at no cost to local governments or taxpayers.

Under this system, retailers are required to take all forms of packaging back from consumers -- from shipping pallets to yogurt cups -- and industry provides for its collection and recycling at no cost to the public sector.

Companies participating in the program have formed a company -- Duales System Deutschland (DSD) -- to administrate the program and the participating companies pay a fee to cover the costs. They then mark their product packaging with a "Green Dot" logo, which can now be found on 80 percent of all products sold in Germany, indicating that the packaging can be recycled. Their goal is to recycle 7 million to 8 million TONNES of packaging waste yearly. The fees for the program are passed on through higher product prices, which DSD estimates will cost each resident of Germany 30 deutsche marks ($18.42) a year.

Most Germans support the green dot system and industry is beginning to respond to the mandate. The program has already prompted four out of five manufacturers to reduce packaging and to reduce the use of difficult to recycle materials.

The program is now being expanded to include automobiles, electronic products and paper products, in addition to product packaging.

The law also requires a mandatory cash deposit on beverage and detergent containers, and requires that 72% of all beverages be in refillable containers.

Several other European countries, following the lead of Germany, are setting up similar programs or requiring cash deposits on retail packaging.

Deposit-return systems for beverage containers are mandatory in nine European countries, while in other countries, governments are providing for the collection of containers through "bottle banks", which are funded with cash charges on beverages.

In some European countries, the refundable cash deposits apply only to refillable bottles, but non-refundable cash charges are paid on disposable, one-way containers as a recycling fee (e.g. Norway, Luxembourg).

The European Community has issued a directive limiting to 10% the amount of packaging that can be landfilled, and specifies that 60% of all packaging must be recycled into new packaging or other materials (The remaining 30% can be incinerated.).

Throughout Europe, industries are being brought on board to bear their share of the cost of funding these programs, and it is likely that, over time, the Polluter Pays principle will become entrenched in international law.

Here in Canada, governments are beginning, in a tentative way, to develop policies and legislative tools aimed at reducing the rate of waste generation.

The goal of these measures will be to shift from "waste management" to "waste minimization", from "pollution control" to "pollution prevention." Adjusting the price of wastefulness through Industry Stewardship programs -- assigning the costs to the producers and generators of waste -- will go a long way towards achieving these ends.

But in Canada, the powers of local governments are specified by the provinces, so in order for local governments to have authority to fully regulate waste produced by industry, amendments at the provincial level need to be made.

Current reduce/reuse initiatives tend to fall into two categories:

Waste management fees and charges can be designed to encourage behavioral change by discouraging wasteful behaviour and encouraging more responsible behaviour. Fees and levies cause environmental costs to be internalized by the producers. As a result, they are reflected in product prices. This, then creates an additional economic incentive to reduce environmental impacts.

Each stage in the life of a product represents a "transition point", where materials are exchanged in some form and where charges can be applied.

Where the charges are applied in the product's life-cycle is important. Levies applied early, before the waste is created, are more powerful in their impact than charges later in the cycle.

The following funding mechanisms work by adjusting the costs of products in ways that promote conservation and a reduction in the production of waste.

Front end levies:

Back end levies: The rule today is the "polluter pays": the more waste you produce, the more it will cost you.

But industry is not always a willing participant in the quest to reduce the amount of garbage produced. When faced with regulations to reduce waste, rather than reusing materials or containers, they find ways to meet the "letter of the law" while still maintaining wasteful practises in the name of profitability.

For example, in order to achieve weight reduction goals, producers of aluminum beverage cans have produced "light-weighed" or "thin-walled" cans, even though these have resulted in a proliferation of non-durable, single-use packaging.

The producers of aluminum beverage cans claim that to "reuse" refillable glass beverage containers is harder on the environment than "recycling" aluminum cans -- even when the empty cans have to be shipped from Canada to Kentucky for recycling. In truth, their motive is profit, oneway containers have no re-handling or waste disposal costs involved.

The North American beverage industries have become centralized, phasing out local bottlers. They have centred their marketing strategy around the theme of convenience, promoting one-way packaging in plastic and aluminum.

Thirty years ago, 95% of all soft drinks and 53% of beer came in refillable glass bottles. Today refillables have experienced an astonishing decline, to less than 2% of pop sales and 5% of beer sales.

Reusable bottles and deposits are strongly resisted by industry. Even though, a very high percentages of containers are returned for reuse or recycling when deposits are charged:

In communities with no deposits, 40% of all containers ended up in the landfill, and, of containers that were not re-usable, only 21% were recycled.

According to Ron Driedger, Director of the Municipal Waste Branch of the British Columbia Department of Environment, Lands and Parks,

In New Brunswick, a law took effect in April 1992 that encourages the use of refillables by refunding only half the deposit on one-way containers and the full deposit on refillable bottles.

In Ontario, the provincial government is promising to strictly enforce an earlier regulation that requires 30% of soft drink sales to be in refillable containers.

In Prince Edward Island, non-refillable containers are banned outright.

The problem are not the consumers. People will buy products in whatever packaging they come in. Industry will package in whatever is most profitable, regardless of the effect on the environment.

If government regulations are put in place using the Industry Stewardship concept or the Polluter pays principle, corporations will do what needs to be done to sell their products, whether they like the regulations or not, whether they agree or not. If industries are unwilling to do what needs to be done, then let us take the steps necessary to require them to do it anyway. It needs to be done. If the old way of doing things becomes unprofitable, corporations will change.


Information for this Appendix was obtained largely from the Recycling COuncil of British Columbia in their newsletter, REITERATE: "The Green Glass Crisis" (February 1992); "The Cost of Recycling" (May 1992); "Making the Most of Too Many Magazines" (January 1993); and "Governing Garbage" (April 1993); and from World Resource Institute, THE 1994 INFORMATION PLEASE ENVIRONMENTAL ALMANAC, (New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1993), p.96.

Appendix 4


Dis-sent (di sent'), v.i. 1. to differ in opinion. 2. to reject the doctrines or authority of an established church. --n. 3. difference in opinion. 4. separate from an established church.--dis-sent'er, n. -- dis-sen-tient (di sen'shant),adj.,n.

We are the dissenters. We choose to differ from the mainstream thought. We no longer buy into the corporate mentality of "life is a career". The mainstream media (television, radio, newspapers) tries to control us, the net result being a large majority of people who never think for themselves, but rather follow along with what they are told by the corporations and government. To dissent means to reject the doctrines or authority of an established church. The church that we reject is the Church of Greed. We reject the consumerism mentality of "buy, buy, and buy more". We reject that they have either the authority or the wisdom to tell us what to do with our lives when they clearcut the forests, killing hundreds of species of animals a year, wage wars for greed, and pollute the environment with nuclear waste. They expect us to trust them, they ask for our votes, and then betray our trust. We reject their greed. We differ in opinion. We dissent.

It is time that we woke up. Do we agree with the mass destruction of our forests, the lungs of the earths? Do we agree that the exploitation of third-world countries in order to have cheap Nike's is a good thing? Who has the right to say what we may or may not take or ingest? Why does the government allow millions to die from smoking-related diseases and many die in drinking-and-driving accidents but keeps marijuana illegal, saying that it is too dangerous to one's health. And how about the education system? Why is [it] that we are taught some things, but not others? We are constantly being subtley brainwashed by our institutions. We are told exactly what they want us to know. The schools no longer serve society. They serve the corporations and government in their goal to prepare us to be a part of the economic "machine". They want us to be cogs in the machine to be used in the production of wealth, so that they may have their BMW's, and two-car garages, while continually destroying our world. But no, we say. We dissent.

It is time to take a stand. We must question our old ways. The world that we have created cannot be sustained. It is time to fight for what [we] believe in. We can no longer afford to look to others to create a better world; the time has come for each and every one of us to take our stand....[We] don't follow the crowd. [We] dissent.

(Reprinted with permission from DISSENTIENT, an underground Zine. Published February 1995 by Matt Larmour)


Note: Any page number followed by brackets refers to information in the endnotes. The first three numbers are page numbers and the brackets refer to the note number on that page. Example: 193(56) refers to note number 56 on page 193.

{Note from the HTML conversion editor: Due to the nature of HTML, page numbers are kind of pointless but I thought I'd include them anyways in case anyone wants to read through it for something in particular. If you want to fin something in particular then maybe you should use the "find" function of your browser.}

Adidas 161
Africa 85, 265-272, 193(56)
Agriculture 63, 69, 70, 112, 157, 171
AIDS 154, 161
Air pollution 109, 161
Arakis International 270
Argentina 78, 78, 78, 83, 95
Army 19, 25, 46, 47, 85
Assembly, illegal 21, 42, 47, 48, 185(46), 229(221)
Asia 130
       Thailand 19, 20
Asia 19, 45, 53, 114, 136, 158
Aung San Suu Kyi 47
Authority 22-24, 28, 32, 34, 123, 125-127, 129, 145
Automobile 23, 63, 108-109, 114, 160, 161, 220(175), 245(277)
Bangkok 19
Birthright 35, 56, 59, 71, 91, 93, 96, 105, 170, 171, 279
Branch Mining and Energy 268, 269
Brazil 68, 158, 159, 191(53)
Britain 83,
British Columbia 21, 26, 29, 55, 61, 112, 114, 122, 141, 160, 193(55), 250(288)
Buddha 04
Burma 45-48, 95
Cabinet 31-33, 37, 38, 40-42, 47
California 21, 174(4)
Canada 06, 26, 30, 32, 34, 37, 38, 39, 41, 45, 47, 48, 62-66, 68, 70, 71, 73, 77-82, 84-86, 103, 105, 112, 125-127, 135, 137-142, 149, 152, 154, 157, 158, 158, 158, 159, 159, 159, 160, 162, 164, 165
Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) 37, 40, 41, 179(22), 258-260
       review committee 37, 179(27)
CANDU nuclear reactors 77-80, 83-85, 209(132)
Cars 23, 63, 108-109, 114, 160, 161, 220(175), 245(277)
Chile 78
China 78, 83, 85, 161
Choices 02-04, 05, 06, 08, 09-12, 13, 14, 17, 20, 21-23, 30, 33, 50, 51, 53, 54, 56, 66, 67, 69, 86, 87, 91, 95, 99-101, 103, 105, 111, 117, 119, 121, 124, 142, 145-149, 153, 165, 167, 169-171
Chretien, Jean 64, 78
Christianity 11, 22, 51, 73, 93-95, 140, 145, 187(52)
       Bible 93, 157
Clayoquat Sound 55, 193(55)
Cold War 80, 84
Colorado River 64
Columbus 157
Communication 02, 05, 06, 11, 12, 14, 15, 17, 29, 50, 53, 77, 87-89, 103, 121, 122, 127, 129, 131, 138
Compassion 21, 51, 73, 74
Confucius 09
Consciousness 01, 02, 05, 09, 13, 14, 16, 17, 22, 23, 26, 43, 49, 50, 53, 87, 88, 91, 97, 99-101, 104, 140, 146, 147, 169-171
Constitution 21, 34-36, 42, 46, 47, 123-125, 146, 177(17), 179(20)
Consumers 14, 67, 93, 111
Control 04, 16, 19, 22, 25, 26, 32, 34, 36, 38, 46, 47, 49, 51, 54, 75, 91, 94, 106, 119, 121, 122, 124, 125-127, 135, 136, 147
anarchy 23        assembly, illegal 21, 42, 47, 48, 185(46), 229(221)
       information, control of 04, 13-17, 31-33, 37-43, 45, 64-66, 79, 82, 87, 147, 154-155, 253-263
       information, gathering of 37-43, 180(30), 181(32), 182(36), 182(37), 184(41), 253-263
       law and order 23, 25, 26, 28, 46, 47
       obedience 07, 10, 16, 20, 21-24, 47, 87, 89, 100, 107, 145
       police state 25, 126, 166, 167, 184(42), 185(43)
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Cordoba, Argentina 78
Corporations (see also multinational corporations)
       decision-makers 06, 95, 117, 163, 165, 167
       multinational 51, 53-55, 57, 65, 67-70, 77, 112, 116, 158, 159, 161, 163-166, 265-272, 248(283), 279
       New world order 37, 53, 54, 164, 170, 187(53)-192
       shareholders 49, 154, 167, 248(283)
       World Trade Organization 54, 68, 203(96)
Crime 06, 16, 21, 22, 25, 28, 93, 126, 145, 146, 148, 149, 173(1)
       anti-crime bill 21, 25
       fear of 06, 16
Criminal code 31, 34, 38, 42
CSIS 37, 38, 40-42, 47, 179(22), 258-260
       review committee 37, 38, 42, 179(27)
Cuba 136, 233(235)
Dalai Lama 95
       national debt 17, 32, 45, 51, 54, 69, 78, 91, 122, 153
Declaration of being 91
Declaration of Human Rights 38, 104, 123, 125, 147, 152, 163, 164, 218(169), 219(170), 219(171), 228(219), 229(221), 230(222), 240(255), 247(281)
Declaration of Independence 157
Decree, rule by 31, 33, 46
Deep River, Ontario 79
Democracy 26, 30, 33, 34, 37, 42, 45-47, 54, 119-122, 122-124, 134, 135, 148, 164, 225(212), 226(213), 227(217), 228(219),
Demonstrations 19-21, 46, 55, 79, 174(5)
DiamondWorks 268
Direct democracy 121, 122, 225(212), 226(213), 227(217), 228(219)
Direction 03-07, 16, 43, 52, 56, 66, 79, 86, 89, 98, 100, 103-105, 119, 124, 140, 143, 151, 167, 169-171
Dissent 07, 37, 41, 48, 55, 279
Diversity 10, 89, 130, 152
Dow Chemical 158, 242(265)
Drugs 25, 27, 93, 146-149, 239(250)
       addiction 93, 148
       marijuana 146-148
       social health issue 148, 239(250)
       war on drugs 25, 146, 148, 149, 239(250)
Dulles, J.F. 54
Dupont Chemical 158, 242(265)
Economic justice 163, 164, 219(170), 219(171), 247(281), 248(284)
       consumers 06, 08, 09, 14, 15, 34, 38, 54, 83, 85, 99, 123, 135, 153, 164
       economic sytem 14, 94, 115, 153, 166
       economy 14, 17, 26, 31, 45, 46, 51, 53-55, 57, 65, 69, 74, 83, 88, 113, 149, 164-166, 248(283)
       global economy 57, 74
       International Monetary Fund (IMF) 68, 69
       investment 57, 65, 115, 164
       jobs 14, 25-27, 45, 46, 51, 53-55, 57, 66, 81, 83, 86, 93, 104, 105, 110, 113, 126, 162, 164-166, 168
       money 07, 14, 15, 26, 27, 29, 46, 49, 50, 52, 53-57, 61, 62, 66, 69, 71, 74, 75, 77, 78, 81-83, 86, 88, 91, 93-95, 109, 111, 113-117, 122, 129, 134, 137, 138, 142, 143, 146, 149, 153, 154, 158, 163-168, 170
       national debt 17, 32, 51, 122
       tax system 31, 86, 105, 115, 116, 122, 143, 164, 165
       World Trade Organization 54, 68, 203(96)
vWorld Bank 54, 68, 70, 78
Education 06, 22, 23, 45, 61, 87, 99, 105, 116, 129, 141, 147, 151-154, 166, 171, 240(255), 279
Effects 02-04, 05, 09-11, 15, 16, 26, 28, 31, 50-52, 65, 85, 87, 91, 99, 100, 108, 109, 112, 114, 116-118, 119, 125, 139, 147, 148, 161, 166, 167, 169
Electricity 63, 116
EMERGENCY MEASURES ACT 41-43, 184(42), 185(43)
England 21, 45, 61, 66, 122
Environment 07, 15, 26, 64, 77, 103, 108, 116, 159, 250(288), 273-278, 279
       pollution 64, 109, 160, 161, 250(288), 273-278
Equal rights 123, 165, 219(170), 219(171), 247(281)
Equality 10, 35, 135, 138, 164, 170
Executive Outcomes 265-272
Farmers 32, 63, 69-71, 73, 75, 105, 112, 157, 162, 171
Fear 06, 14-16, 20, 23, 26, 37, 46, 55, 95, 100, 105, 109, 130, 138, 139, 142, 148, 151
Fire 53, 59, 61, 127, 141-143
       fire circle 141, 142
Focus 02-07, 10, 13, 14, 16, 53, 93-95, 97-99, 103-105, 108, 136, 167-171
Food 21, 27, 32, 45, 46, 59, 66-71, 73-75, 88, 93, 94, 96, 103-106, 109-112, 141, 143, 157, 158, 162, 163, 166, 167, 219(171)
       destroyed. 74
       hungry 21, 45, 59, 68, 69, 73, 74, 93, 94, 104-106, 146, 166, 167, 219(171)
Food growers 32, 63, 69-71, 73, 75, 105, 112, 157, 162, 171
Food, Not Bombs 21
Ford, Henry 161
Ford Motor Company 161
Forests 55, 68, 93, 94, 108, 112, 158-161, 162, 193(55), 201(86), 220(175), 243(266), 243(267), 243(268), 244(269), 245(271)
France 83, 84
Free-will 03-05, 08-11, 13, 17, 20-23, 30, 54, 59, 91, 99-101, 119, 124, 142, 148, 149, 172, 173(2)
       coercion 07, 09, 13, 20, 22, 135, 138
       compulsion 09, 11
       conscious choice 03-06, 08-13, 17, 20, 36, 51, 59, 87, 88, 91, 95, 97, 99, 100, 105, 117, 120, 122, 124, 137, 143, 146-148, 165, 167, 169-171, 173(2)
Free trade 53-54, 57, 64, 70, 78, 80, 81, 136, 187(53)-192
       Free Trade Area of the Americas 78, 191(53)-192
       General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 64, 66, 70, 195(67), 195(68)
       Multilateral Investment Agreement (MIA) 187(53)-191
       North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) 64, 65, 70, 78, 81, 194(66), 195(67), 195(68), 196(72), 197(73), 198(74)
Freedom 11, 16, 21, 22, 24, 25, 29, 30, 34, 35, 43, 47, 50, 54-57, 59, 62, 67, 89, 103, 105, 119, 123, 125, 126, 133, 134, 146, 147, 152, 165, 229(221)
       free country 17, 25, 34, 126, 148
Gandhi 11
Garbage 82, 83, 97, 111, 112, 113, 114, 115, 116, 117, 222(185), 222(191), 223(197), 223(199), 224(201), 224(204), 273-278
Gathering places 21, 37, 56, 89, 142
Gautama 04
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 64, 66, 70, 195(67), 195(68)
       ownership of life forms 70, 204(101)
Generation 05-07, 13, 17, 57, 83, 88, 89, 98, 100, 103, 107, 127, 141, 142, 146-148, 152, 167, 169-171, 279
Genetic engineering 70, 204(101)
Government 10, 19, 22, 23, 25, 30-34, 36-40, 42, 43, 46, 47, 54-57, 64-66, 69, 70, 77-79, 81, 82, 91, 95, 101, 119-126, 134, 136, 142, 145, 146, 154, 159, 162, 165, 168, 225(212), 226(213), 227(217), 228(219), 229(221), 230(222)
       cabinet 31, 32, 40, 42
       Canadian 42, 78, 81
       constitution 21, 34, 34, 34, 35, 36, 42, 46, 47, 123, 124, 125, 146, 177(17), 179(20), 228(219)
       elections , 06, 31, 33, 41, 57, 65, 79, 119, 120, 121, 122, 123, 135, 137, 139, 140, 225(212), 226(213)
       internal security 37, 43, 46, 179(22), 184(42), 185(43), 185(46)
       law and order 23, 25, 26, 28, 46, 47
       laws 16, 30, 31, 32, 34, 36, 39, 40, 45, 47, 53, 56, 64, 81, 114, 124, 125-127, 136, 143, 157, 250(288)
       Members of Parliament 37, 119, 120, 225(212), 226(213)
       orders in council 31, 32, 40, 42, 253-263
       parliament 31, 32, 37, 40, 119, 120, 225(212), 226(213)
       police state 25, 126, 166, 167
       political system 33, 36, 123, 225(212), 226(213), 227(217), 228(219)
       prime minister 31, 37, 38, 64, 78, 119, 225(212), 226(213)
       suppression of information 253-263
       trade agreements 53-54, 64-66, 70, 78, 187(53)-192
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Grand Canyon 64
Greed 07, 14, 16, 49, 53, 56, 57, 93, 95, 97, 100, 148, 163, 170
Guatemala 68
Gutenberg Bible 157
Hackeysacks 07
Halifax, Nova Scotia 21, 29, 62, 73, 174(6)
Hearst, William Randolph 158, 242(265)
Helsinki Accord 123
Hemp 17, 157-162, 242(265), 245(277)
Heritage Oil and Gas 269
Hiroshima 80, 84, 209(132)
Homeless 15, 29, 61, 73, 74, 174(4)
Human rights 29, 31, 34, 34-36, 36, 37, 38, 41, 42, 46, 47, 56, 64, 104, 104, 123, 125, 147, 152, 163-165, 179(20), 185(46), 218(169), 219(170), 219(171), 228(219), 229(221), 230(222), 240(255), 247(281)
Hunger 55, 67, 73, 74, 104-106, 161, 219(171)
India 78, 84, 85, 216(158)
Industry stewardship 117
       control of 04, 13-17, 31-33, 37-43, 45, 64-66, 79, 82, 87, 147, 154-155, 253-263
       gathering of 37-43, 180(30), 181(32), 182(36), 182(37), 184(41), 253-263
Intention 09, 10, 14, 27, 42, 87, 88, 99, 163
Internal security 37, 43, 46, 179(22), 184(42), 185(43), 185(46)
INTERNATIONAL BILL OF HUMAN RIGHTS 38, 104, 123, 125, 147, 152, 163, 164, 218(169), 219(170), 219(171), 228(219), 229(221), 230(222), 240(255), 247(281)
International Monetary Fund (IMF) 68
International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War 139, 235(239)
Investment 57, 65, 115, 164
Israel 85
Jail 23, 29, 146, 148, 229(221), 240(251)
Japan 112, 136
Jesus 11, 73
Just doing their job 49, 50, 73
       economic 163, 164, 219(170), 219(171), 247(281), 248(284)
       social 15, 164, 219(170), 219(171)
Justice system 26, 124-127, 149, 229(221), 230(222), 240(251)
       court "undertakings" 125, 126, 229(221)
       restorative justice 127
       secret trials 47, 48, 186(50)
       Supreme Court 29, 126, 136
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Key Lake Saskatchewan 77, 86
King of Thailand 19
Labour 51, 53, 54, 91, 93, 94, 138, 153, 154, 163, 164, 166
Lao Tzu 107, 137
Latin America 53, 55, 68, 78, 83, 95, 158
Law and order 23, 25, 26, 28, 46, 47
       internal security 37, 43, 46, 179(22), 184(42), 185(43), 185(46)
Laws 10, 21-24, 25-28, 30, 31, 32, 34, 35, 37-39, 39, 40, 41, 42, 46, 47, 49, 50, 55, 56, 61, 62, 64, 65, 65, 66, 71, 80, 81, 123, 125, 126, 134, 136, 139, 146, 148, 158, 159, 161, 165, 171
       assembly, illegal 21, 42, 47, 48, 185(46), 229(221)
       environmental laws 167, 250(288), 273-278
       illegal 21, 22, 34, 47, 57, 62, 73, 74, 124, 139, 140, 141, 145, 146-148, 158, 162, 168
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Legal system 26, 124-127, 149, 229(221), 230(222), 240(251)
       court "undertakings" 125, 126
       restorative justice 127
       secret trials 47, 48, 186(50)
       Supreme Court 29, 126, 136
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Levi-Strauss 161
Life 03, 05-15, 17, 19, 20, 21, 24, 25, 31, 33, 35, 45, 50, 51, 55, 56, 59, 68, 70, 71, 81, 86-88, 91, 93-101, 104, 105, 107, 109, 110, 129, 138, 141, 142, 147, 148, 151-154, 158, 161, 163, 167, 168, 170-172
       birthright 35, 56, 59, 71, 91, 93, 96, 105, 170, 171
Logging 55, 68, 93, 94, 108, 112, 158-161, 162, 193(55), 201(86), 220(175), 243(266), 243(267), 243(268), 244(269), 245(271)
MacDonalds 67, 69
MacMillan-Bloedel 55, 193(55)
Manitoba 79
Marijuana 146-148
Martial arts code of conduct 130, 137
Martin Luther King 11
Mass transit 109
Meadow Lake Tribal Council 80, 81
Media 06, 15, 16, 26, 35, 45, 47, 53, 54, 65, 74, 78, 134, 147
       television 06, 13-17, 19, 25, 26, 38, 51, 109
Mercenaries 55, 265-272
Mescalero Tribal Council 80
Military 19, 25, 26, 32, 46, 55, 65, 74, 78-80, 91, 110, 122, 133-136, 137-140, 265-272, 235(237)
       mercenaries 55, 265-272
       nuclear weapons 77, 80, 83-85, 134, 135, 139, 140, 209(132), 214(148), 214(149), 215(150), 215(151), 215(152), 217(162), 231(231), 237(244)
Money 07, 14, 15, 26, 27, 29, 46, 49, 50, 52, 53-57, 61, 62, 66, 69, 71, 74, 75, 77, 78, 81-83, 86, 88, 91, 93-95, 109, 111, 113-117, 122, 129, 134, 137, 138, 142, 143, 146, 149, 153, 154, 158, 163-168, 170
Money, jobs, and the economy 14, 53-55, 83
Montreal 26
Multinational corporations 51, 53-55, 57, 65, 67-70, 77, 112, 116, 158, 159, 161, 163-166, 265-272, 248(283), 279
       Adidas 161
       Arakis International 270
       Branch Mining and Energy 268, 269
       Cogema Resources 206(107)
       decision makers 55, 57, 163
       DiamondWorks 268
       Dow Chemical 158, 242(265)
       Dupont Chemical 158, 242(265)
       Executive Outcomes 265-272
       Heritage Oil and Gas 269
       Levi-Strauss 161
       MacDonalds 67, 69
       MacMillan-Bloedel 55, 193(55)
       Ranger oil 269-270
       Shell Oil Company 55, 193(56)
       Strategic Resources Corporation 268-270
       World Trade Organization 54, 68, 203(96)
NAFTA 53-54, 64-66, 70, 78, 162, 194(66), 195(67), 195(68), 196(72), 197(73), 198(74)
       Cancellation procedure 65, 198(74)
       nuclear waste 80, 81
       sale of nuclear reactors 78
National debt 17, 32, 45, 51, 54, 69, 78, 91, 122
NATO 135, 231(231)
Natural resources 45-47, 51-55, 57, 65, 68, 69, 74, 75, 93, 94, 96, 103, 107-109, 112, 113, 115, 116, 137, 138, 152, 158-161, 162, 164-166, 243(266), 243(267), 243(268), 244(269), 245(271)
New Brunswick 80, 83, 86
New world order 37, 53, 54, 94, 164, 170, 187(53)-192
New York City 61
Nigeria 55, 193(56)
Nobel Peace Prize 47, 139
       Aung San Suu Kyi 47
       International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War 139, 235(239)
Non-violent conflict resolution 87, 127, 129-131, 138
North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) 53-54, 64-66, 70, 78, 162, 194(66), 195(67), 195(68), 196(72), 197(73), 198(74)
       cancellation procedure 65, 198(74)
       nuclear waste 80, 81
       sale of nuclear reactors 78
North Korea 85
Nova Scotia 21, 29, 62, 73
Nuclear accidents 77, 82, 83, 86, 210(140), 211(141), 212(143), 213(144), 213(145)
       Argentina 83, 213(145)
       Chalk River 82, 210(140), 211(141), 212(143)
       Chernobyl 86
       Ontario 82
       Ottawa River 82, 211(141)
       Pickering, Ontario 83, 213(144)
       St. Lawrence River 82
       Three Mile Island 86
       Quebec 82
       Key Lake, Saskatchewan 77
Nuclear power 15, 63, 69, 80, 82, 84
Nuclear reactors 77-80, 82-85, 209(132), 214(148)
       CANDU 77-80, 83-85, 209(132)
       Pickering, Ontario 83
       uranium 77-80, 83-86, 206(107), 206(108), 206(109), 206(110), 209(132), 214(149)
Nuclear tests 84, 85, 216(158)
Nuclear waste 77, 79-86, 217(162)
       half-life 81
       Canadian Arctic 85
       Deep River, Ontario 79
       plutonium 80, 84, 85
       Whiteshell Nuclear Research Establishment 79
Nuclear weapons 77, 80, 83-85, 134, 135, 139, 140, 209(132), 214(148), 214(149), 215(150), 215(151), 215(152), 217(162), 231(231), 237(244)
       countries with 83-85, 135, 231(231), 237(244)
       Hiroshima 80, 84
Obedience 07, 10, 16, 20, 21-24, 47, 87, 89, 100, 107, 145
       control 04, 16, 19, 22, 25, 26, 32, 34, 36, 38, 46, 47, 49, 51, 54, 75, 91, 94, 106, 119, 121, 122, 124, 125-127, 135, 136, 147
Oil 31, 45, 55, 57, 65, 74, 109, 111, 112, 136, 157, 160, 161, 193(56), 268-270
       Arakis International 270
       Branch Mining and Energy 268, 269
       Heritage Oil and Gas 269
       Ranger oil 269-270
       Shell Oil Company 55, 193(56)
Ontario 27, 62, 63, 66, 79-83, 86, 112
Orders in council 31-33, 40-43, 253-263
Oregon 23, 25, 88, 112, 122, 129-130
Oregon Peace Institute 129-130
Ottawa River 82
Packaging industry 111
Pakistan 78, 85
Parliament 31-43, 119-124, 225(212), 226(213), 253-263
Pearl Harbour 136
Penticton, British Columbia 141
Personal information files 37-40, 256-261
Pickering, Ontario 83
Pinawa, Manitoba 79
plutonium 80, 84, 85
Police 15, 16, 21-23, 25-30, 37, 38, 43, 46, 47, 61, 62, 73, 89, 95, 126, 127, 141, 143, 145, 146, 149, 166, 167, 174(9), 230(224)
       abuse of power 26-30, 174(9)
       arrested 21, 25, 28, 46, 47, 61, 62, 240(251)
       law and order 23, 25, 26, 28, 46, 47
       peace officers 26, 127
       secret police 37, 43, 46
       victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
Politicians 06, 33, 34, 36, 41-43, 53-55, 57, 64, 66, 70, 74, 79, 95, 107, 122-126, 145, 225(212), 226(213)
Pollution 93, 250(288), 273-278
       air 93, 108, 109, 160, 161, 220(175), 245(277)
       water 63, 93 160
Population 02, 25, 26, 46, 54, 62, 63, 67, 70, 73, 75, 106, 112, 117, 121, 123, 135, 140, 143, 149, 168, 170, 238(247)
Portland 23, 88, 112, 129-130
Poverty 15, 29, 61, 73, 74, 164, 204(102), 248(284)
       homeless 21, 61, 62, 73, 74, 174(4)
Prime minister 31, 37, 38, 64, 78, 119, 225(212), 226(213)
Prisons 21, 22, 25, 26, 27, 34, 50, 55-57, 125-127, 146, 148, 149, 167, 240(251)
PRIVACY ACT 39, 40, 182(36), 182(37), 184(41), 253-263
Programming 03, 04, 07, 08, 13-17, 22, 26, 40, 53, 79, 89, 95, 105, 122, 135, 152, 168
Public land 21, 31, 57, 62, 141, 142, 174(6)
Quebec 82
Ranger oil 269-270
Recycling 113-116, 223(197), 223(199), 224(204), 273-278
Respect 12, 13, 22, 26, 36, 57, 87-89, 100, 103, 127, 129, 130, 139, 141, 142, 152, 171
Responsibility 09, 10, 23, 24, 30, 38, 49, 50, 51, 64, 86-89, 91, 100, 109, 112, 133, 135, 142, 143, 146, 167, 169
Right to life
       birthright 35, 56, 59, 71, 91, 93, 96, 105, 170, 171, 279
Rising generation 05-07, 13, 17, 57, 88, 89, 98, 100, 103, 127, 141, 142, 146-148, 152, 167, 169-171, 279
Romania 78, 85
Rule by decree 31, 33, 46
Rules 07, 21-24, 31-34, 36, 38, 40, 41, 43, 54, 87, 89, 98, 120, 124, 125, 145, 146, 148
Russell, Bertrand 151
Russia 25, 77, 82-84
San Francisco 21, 112, 174(4)
Sarowiwa, Ken 55, 193(56)
Saskatchewan 70, 77, 79, 80, 81, 86, 206(107), 206(108), 206(109), 206(110)
Schopenhauer, Arthur 99
Seattle, Washington 21, 174(5)
Secret trials 47, 48, 186(50)
Shell Oil Company 55, 193(56)
Sedition 178(18)
Skateboarding 07, 142, 145, 146
Sleep 59, 61, 62, 74, 93, 94, 141, 143
Social justice 15, 164, 219(170), 219(171), 247(281)
Social services 89, 104, 143
Socrates 11
South Africa 85, 265-272
South America 53, 55, 68, 78, 158
       Argentina 78, 83, 95
       Chile 78
       Guatemala 68
South Korea 84, 85
Southeast Asia 19, 45
Soviet Union 25, 68, 77, 82-84, 158
Special interest groups 15
St. Lawrence River 83
Strategic Resources Corporation 268-270
Stock exchange 154, 164
Street kids 21, 29, 61, 73, 74
Supreme Court 29, 126, 136
Taiwan 78
Tao Te Ching 107, 137, 235(236)
Taxes 06, 31, 32, 51, 62, 116, 164
Television 06, 13-17, 19, 25, 26, 38, 51, 109
Thought 01-10, 12, 13-17, 23, 26, 33, 35, 49, 50, 53, 54, 56, 87-89, 91, 95, 97-99, 101, 104, 140, 146, 147, 169-171
Toronto, Ontario 27, 62
Trade agreements 53-54, 64-66, 70, 78, 187(53)-192
       Free Trade Area of the Americas 78, 191(53)-192
       General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) 64, 66, 70, 195(67), 195(68)
       Multilateral Investment Agreement (MIA) 187(53)-191
       North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) 64, 65, 70, 78, 81, 194(66), 195(67), 195(68), 196(72), 197(73), 198(74)
Trees 55, 68, 93, 94, 108, 112, 158-161, 162, 201(86), 220(175), 243(266), 243(267), 243(268), 244(269), 245(271)
U.S.S.R. 25, 77, 82-84
Undertakings 125, 126
United Kingdom 21, 45, 66, 122
United Nations 38, 55, 73, 84, 104, 123, 125, 134, 135, 136, 139, 147, 152, 159, 231(230)
       Security Council 135, 232(232), 233(234)
       World Court 134, 139, 140, 235(240), 237(244)
       International Bill of Human Rights 38, 104, 123, 125, 147, 152, 163, 164, 218(169), 219(170), 219(171), 228(219), 229(221), 230(222), 240(255), 247(281)
United States 06, 21, 23, 25, 26, 32, 38, 39, 53, 54, 61, 64-66, 68, 69, 74, 80, 81, 83-85, 88, 103, 111, 112, 122, 129-130, 133-137, 139, 140, 148, 149, 157-162, 231(230), 231(231), 232(232), 233(234), 233(235)
       anti-crime bill 21, 25
       Declaration of Independence 157
       war on drugs 25, 146, 148, 149, 239(250)
Uranium 77-80, 83-86, 206(107), 206(108), 206(109), 206(110), 209(132), 214(149)
Vancouver, British Columbia 26, 114
Vehicle 23, 63, 108-109, 114, 160, 161, 220(175), 245(277)
Victimless crimes 21-24, 61-62, 73-74, 141-142, 145, 146, 148, 149, 158, 161-162, 168, 174(4), 174(6), 279
       burning money 168
       crossing street 23
       drugs 146-149, 239(250), 279
       feeding hungry 21, 73-74, 174(4)
       fire 141-142
       growing hemp 17, 158, 161-162, 242(265)
       sitting on grass 21, 174(6)
       sitting on sidewalk 21
       skateboarding 07, 145, 146
       sleep 61-62
Victoria, British Columbia 21, 61
Vietnam 134
Violence 06, 09, 15, 17, 22, 25, 26, 28, 34, 37, 43, 46, 47, 54, 64, 69, 87, 99, 127, 130, 133-135, 137, 138, 148, 265-272
       martial arts code of conduct 130, 137
       non-violent conflict resolution 87, 127, 129-131, 138
       privatization of violence 55, 265-272
War 45-48, 55, 57, 65, 75, 78-80, 84, 86, 95, 106, 122, 133-136, 137-140, 160, 161, 265-272
       privatization of war 55, 265-272
War on drugs 25, 146, 148, 149, 239(250)
       marijuana 146-148
       prohibition laws 146, 239(250)
Washington 21, 136, 157
Water 31, 59, 61, 63-66, 71, 82, 83, 93, 94, 96, 110, 157-159, 166-168, 194(61), 195(68), 196(72), 197(73), 198(75), 199(76), 201(77)
Weapons 74, 77, 80, 83-86, 133-135, 138-140, 209(132), 214(148), 214(149), 215(150), 215(151), 215(152), 217(162), 231(231), 237(244)
Where do we go from here 03-07, 16, 43, 52, 56, 66, 79, 86, 89, 98, 100, 103-105, 119, 124, 139, 140, 143, 151, 167, 169-171, 279
World Bank 54, 68, 70, 78
World Court 134, 139, 140, 235(240), 237(244)
World Court Project 134, 139, 140, 235(239), 235(240), 236(241), 237(244)
World Health Organization 67, 236(241)
World Resources Institute 68, 158, 201(86)
World Trade Organization (WTO) 54, 68, 203(96)
World War II 70, 135, 136, 161
Youth 05-07, 13, 21, 29, 57, 67, 88, 89, 98, 100, 103, 127, 141-143, 145, 147-149, 151, 152, 167, 169, 170, 171

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