Are Immigrants Solely Responsible For Jobs Being Lost To Canada-Born Canadians? part 4

Peruvian lives on Canada's conscience |

“As the Peruvian immigrant community in Kitchener-Waterloo – and families at home in Peru – mourn the loss of 11 of their own in a deadly highway crash in rural Ontario on February 6, at least one Toronto daily newspaper two days later prioritized instead the highway death [of] a single girl (a white, 19-year-old aspiring model), pushing the 11 Peruvian lives to page eight.” – Tyler Shipley

These are not immigrants, not because some of them might not like to be mind you. (The conspirators – Canada’s employers, the Canadian government and governments that work with it on the seasonal worker program – focus their recruiting efforts on married workers who won’t be so inclined to try to stay in Canada when they have wives and children back in Honduras or wherever. This isn’t about what the people want. This sick program is about what uncaring bosses want.) Nevertheless, It demonstrates that our political leaders have no interest in making decent jobs for Canadians. Their only concern is with looking after their exploitative partners in the private sector. These nasty Canadian jobs forced (by circumstances created by the conspirators) on foreigners could be made to be safe and well paid and attractive to Canadian citizens. But again, Those are not the intentions of our fascist leaders.

An excerpt from the above linked-to article follows:

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This might beg the question: why do people accept these jobs if they have a well-documented record of being unsafe and exploitative? The employers that rely on migrant labour understand that they will only coax people to work for them if employment opportunities in their home countries are relatively few and exploitative. For example, in Peru, neo-liberal policies have created dramatic escalations of urban and rural poverty: the privatization and sale of communal lands to foreign mining companies has left entire communities with little means of survival and has led to massive protests that are inevitably crushed by the Peruvian military and police. Canada signed a free trade agreement with Peru just two weeks after one such crackdown killed over 50 Peruvians.

In the first place, then, it is clear that Canadian businesses take advantage of people who are already in a precarious position in order to boost their own profits. Not exactly commendable behaviour. Further, Canadian businesses don’t simply take advantage of foreign workers who are brought to work in Canada, they also go to great pains to exploit those workers on their own soil. Over the past 30 years, Canadian companies have pushed hard to gain access to foreign markets in order to establish mines, factories, or resort hotels in countries with weak labour, safety, and environmental regulations in order to — again — boost their profits, at the expense of foreign workers.

The free trade agreement with Peru makes Canadian businesses Peru’s largest investors in mining, employing workers in dangerous jobs with low wages and little security. Indeed, Canada spent nearly $10 million in the early 2000s on a project to “re-develop” Peru’s mining legislation such that labour laws, environmental protections, and tax codes would be rewritten to the advantage of Canadian companies. Similar processes have played out in countries like Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Colombia, where workers are exploited ruthlessly in mines or sweatshops and where people caught organizing against Canadian employers have faced violence and assassinations. Just ask the Dominican workers who were assassinated by private security forces after they tried to form a union at Canadian-owned Barrick Gold mines at Pueblo Viejo.

What is perhaps most damning about this systematic exploitation of foreign and migrant workers is that it takes place with the full participation of the Canadian state. In fact, it would not be possible without a comprehensive set of policies, spanning various departments and offices, designed to enable and encourage this process.
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Here’s my law & order government in action. Again. I really don’t have much to add to this ‘to the point’, important report. I just very much want others to look at it. This ongoing injustice has been reported in our major media over the years, never sufficiently, but not absolutely insufficiently. See my blog’s home page and the docs I link to on it. Among them is one titled “Le Contrato.” It’s up to Canadian citizens to care enough about migrant worker abuse, and other issues, to not forget about it half an hour after learning about it. True, Our government is no longer ‘our’ government. Still… Our media, clearly, isn’t our media, the odd bit of proper coverage notwithstanding. Don’t expect the corporate owned media to attack the bosses who enslave and abuse the people either. The Toronto Star at least said something about the dangerous vans used to ferry our legal slaves around. But it didn’t say much more. It certainly didn’t say enough.

“No one should be surprised that the only form of media criticism that gets ample play in the commercial news media is criticism of corporate media for deferring – on rare occasions – to the pluralist values that most Americans embrace. Thus, we hear a lot about how the media has a left-wing or liberal bias…

“The truth, of course, is that there is no liberal bias in the media. World-class scholars, such as Edward S. Hermann and Noam Chomsky, have made substantial arguments about the media’s structural bias toward the corporate and political status quo…

“The bottom line: The corporate media are more than willing to entertain the idea that their main problem is that they are too critical of big business, the military, and people in power, and too sympathetic to the dispossessed. It reconfirms their self-image as some sort of feisty Fourth Estate. They are unwilling to even broach the idea that they sit atop a system that was set up in a corrupt manner and that works to advance the interests of corporate [America] and limit democracy.” -pages 30 & 31 of “Our Media Not Theirs,” by Robert W. McChesney & John Nichols (2002)

Major media everywhere is pretty much the same mountain of pooh. I recently responded to a “Toronto Star article, titled “Need tax advice? Here’s how to get it,” in their sorry moneyville section but neglected to mention the name of the organization which I referred to. I was alerting readers to the existence of a new Canadian organization that is interested in educating Canadians about a different way to view taxes, unlike the way to view taxes that corporate owned media would favor and promote. Canadians For Tax Fairness view taxes not as a negative but as a positive (and I’ll talk about that in my next blog post). That post was accepted, but my follow up post in which I provided a link to that organization was disappeared. Repeatedly. I doubt if anyone high up in the Star is even aware of this. I doubt if anyone high up in the Star cares that it has losers (I call them gatekeepers) loose – too free – within it’s organization causing grief, if not serious damage, to those with the ‘wrong’ political views.

part 1, part 2, part 3, part 5, part 6, part 7

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