Friday, December 09, 2011

Another thrilling episode of Beyond the Border

In this week's episode, Steve lays a cunning trap for Barry. In exchange for agreeing to pass travel and "informal" info about Canadians on to Homeland Security, Steve gets Barry to promise to maybe match $1-billion in Canadian taxpayer dollars to fund some pilot projects sometime in the future that will principally benefit the 40% of Canada-US corporations that rely on a cross-border supply chain. Will Barry take the bait?

Well you can clearly see the advantage to Canada here. If US security dudes are openly operating in Canada, never again will the RCMP suffer the humiliation of delivering a Canadian citizen to the US border so he can be tried and jailed in the US for acts committed and not considered criminal in Canada.  So there's that.

And "informal information exchange", ie unsubstantiated spook-thinks about brown Canadians with funny names like Abdelrazik and Arar, has clearly worked out really well in previous informal information exchanges.

From the Canadian Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan:
Canada and the United States have a long history of working together to defend the freedoms and rights of our citizens and to deal with threats to our collective way of life. Cross-border cooperation and information sharing are crucial to these efforts.
See how that works?
None of that old "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" nonsense. It's all the same thing now - it's "collective". And if we have to pitch a few more hippies/troublemakers/brown peoples into the gaping maw of US security paranoia, well that's just a price we're willing to pay to keep those trucks rolling back and forth over the border.

Most of the TV and print media commentary in favour of this latest episode of Beyond the Border has come from Canada-US Project luminaries Derek Burney, Colin Robertson, and Fen Osler Hampson, whose Blueprint for Canada-US Engagement appears to be the blueprint for Steve and Barry's deal. They say it will be very good for Canada and is in no way a threat to our sovereignty, a defence which would be rather more reassuring had Hampson not made a pitch to the Foreign Affairs committee in 2009 in favour of dropping the national border altogether.


Anonymous said...

As usual, brilliant. Hampson really did that? Creepy shit happening daily.

Anonymous said...

Still wondering.

Is this part and parcel of your previous speculation on Foreign Free Trade Zones and this is the opening salvo?

West End Bob said...

Very well done, M'Lady!

Thank you . . . .

(Photo is brilliant, BTW!)

Boris said...

Wait for it, next they'll be integrating the prison systems...

Does this mean armed US law enforcement will operate in Canada?

Anonymous said...

The National didn't touch on this point at all. Just how great it would be for import/export regulations to start being harmonized.

Alison said...

Anon1 : Hampson was advocating for a Schengen Area-style border for Canada and the US like they have in Europe - cross-border police and judicial cooperation instead of border controls.

Anon2 : Not an opening salvo but a continuation of former SPP objectives - this time without Mexico - but again beyond parliamentary and congressional control. Not sure how FTZs fit in but thanks for the reminder to look into that.

Bob : ;-)

Boris : Yes it does mean armed US law enforcement in Canada - as the land-based version of the already implemented Shiprider program - although I don't expect to see Texas Rangers lounging around in our shopping malls any time soon.
US AG Eric Holder called it "Next Generation teams of cross-designated officers" in September and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano called it "shared cross-border law enforcement" in her presser today.

To be honest, Steve's negotiating away of Canadian security sovereignty to the US bothers me less than his obvious intention to internalize the worst of US security state policies.
So far this Beyond the Border deal is not a treaty; it's a joint statement of intent for future pilot projects.

Anon3 : You mean CBC's The National? You'll be pleased to hear their TV coverage two nights ago was very good, covering pretty well all the main points, including what Europeans travelling in and out of Canada will think about Canada storing their data for Homeland Security and where the hell the money for all this is going to come from - us. Opened the hour with reports from Neil Macdonald and Terry Milewski. It was good - 5 stars - really!

West End Bob said...

Thanks for the review of The National coverage of that evening, Alison.

Think I'll go check out the archives based on your recommendation . . . .

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the correction about The National's coverage. I must have only caught part of it.

Anonymous said...

'Shhhhh' on the 'Barry' stuff. Now Harper will know what to call him so it really does look like they're buddies!

thwap said...

Sheriff Arpaio for Prime Minister!

Alison said...

Sheriff Arpaio ... hmmm ... private fleet of planes, millions of dollars misspent, illegal arrests, aggressive illegal immigrant policy, ignored 400 sex crimes, endorses Rick Perry for Prez ... yup, he'd fit right in.

thwap said...

Another plus: Just like our current despot's past association with racists like the Northern Foundation, Arpaio pals around with neo-Nazi blackshirts.

We'll fix the election laws so that USian celebrities and other noteworthies can run here too then.

Full steam ahead!

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