Must Reads from Last Week

Spreading the Word

If you have friends who are interested in any of the content of this blog, please feel free to share it far and wide. The fact that it comes from the Greens of North Island-Powell River (NIPR) doesn’t mean it is only relevant to people in that riding.  Because all Greens are part of the Global Greens, we need to think outside our riding boundaries and connect with each other.  Encourage your friends to subscribe to NIPR communications. Let’s connect across this vast riding, this vast country, and this vast but ultimately tiny planet.

Have Your Say About Did You Know…

If you’d like to respond to an article here, go to NIPR’s website and leave a comment.  If you have ideas for future editions – remember, Did You Know… is weekly – go to NIPR’s website and leave a comment. If you have general feedback, go to NIPR’s website and leave a comment.

BC Electoral Reform Referendum

Gord Johns and Nathan Cullen are holding a town hall. It’s titled Save Our Coast, Stop Trans-Mountain. However, apparently the last half hour will be on proportional representation.

DATE/TIME:  Wednesday, August 29, 7-9 pm
LOCATION:   Florence Filberg Centre



Big Oil – Kevin Taft 


DATE/TIME:  September 13, 2018; 7 pm (Doors 6:30).
LOCATION:    Native Sons Hall, Upper Level

Student price $15.
Regular price $20.

 Don’t miss the Kevin Taft Tour! Kevin will be speaking about the deep tentacles that Big Oil has woven into the tapestry of government decision making.

5 cities, one question: “Who is really in charge?” To find out more and get your tickets, please visit the website at (But hurry, seats are limited) Then spread the word. Because it matters, to all of us.

3L Developments and Stotan Falls

The ad below appeared in the Comox Valley Record on August 23, 2018. In the August 4 edition of this blog, we had a link to the fight between 3L Developments and the Comox Valley Regional District about permits and licenses for 3L’s proposed gigantic development at Stotan Falls. Well, this ad in Thursday’s paper (page A12 – I can’t find it in the online version and so can’t give you the graphic) has the content shown below, but in a more larger and more visible format.



Join us on Thursday, Sep. 6th at 7pm in the Florence Filberg Centre 411 Anderton Ave., Courtenay to view our proposal for a 260 acre public park surrounding Stotan Falls, and the residential community of Riverwood. We need your support to Save The Park. We are concerned that the public may lose this opportunity to keep the park, for the people and future generations. Our team will be there to answer your questions about the park, community and environment. Save The Park!


One could be forgiven for thinking this was an effort to stop the 3L Developments project and thus save the Stotan Falls area from development (at least for now). But one would be wrong. At the bottom of the ad, in smaller type, it says “For more information: So this is NOT, as far as we can tell, an effort to save the area from development. This is an effort by 3L Developments to tell people who may come with the idea that they want to save the area about how wonderful it will be to put 700 homes in there. There is a Facebook group, Save the Puntledge Triangle!, who say this is a CVRD event, but the CVRD website doesn’t have the event listed and the ad clearly states it is from 3L Developments. Just be forewarned if you plan to attend - there may be some confusion about the purpose of the meeting.

Second Sustainability Forum

DATE/TIME:  Wednesday, September 19, 7 pm
LOCATION:    K’omoks Band Hall
Registration is required, though tickets are free.

The evening will begin with an introduction to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, followed with an overview of the goals outlined in the Regional Growth Strategy and Official Community Plans and why these matter to the well-being of our Comox Valley communities. Five speakers will present information on a range of issues ranging from public health and local economic development to climate change and infrastructure. The Forum will address what is currently taking place in the Valley and how we can strengthen our commitment to build a more sustainable community. Read more.

Dogwood and Leadnow are interfering in local elections?!

According to Dick Clancy, the Comox Valley Taxpayers Alliance is concerned about “affordability for young families and seniors. The cost of housing is rising dramatically, there are additional costs that are getting poured onto the developers, eventually the purchasers inherit, it’s spiralling out of control. This is becoming, each year, less and less an affordable community.” This laudable goal of creating an affordable community by ensuring greater profits for property developers is being hampered by social justice groups interfering in our elections. Read more.

Excerpt: “As for the Dogwood Initiative, Clancy stated his belief that the group was using American money to interfere elections at every level of government. We question why you would hire someone to run a corporation with a $65 million annual budget, which is what the City of Courtenay is, based solely on that individual’s opposition to a pipeline in another jurisdiction,” said Clancy. That is what Dogwood, and Leadnow, are doing to our communities.”



Trudeau and the Federal Cabinet were in Nanaimo on August 22

Part 1: “The Wilderness Committee, Rise and Resist, Coast Protectors, Protect the Inlet, Stand and Sierra Club B.C. are gathered outside Vancouver Island Conference Centre, where Trudeau and Liberals are meeting.” Read more.  There are also a couple of videos on this site.

Part 2: Protest accuses Trudeau of fiddling on pipeline while climate change burns BC
Read more.

Here are some photos (many thanks to Susan Holvenstot):

From 2015, the tawdry fall of the Postmedia newspaper empire

Even though this article is from 2015, it completely elucidates how the corporate control of the media determines what we see and taints democracy. Watch this video and see how a cartoonist took an Enbridge ad promoting Northern Gateway and superimposed oil spills, a stunt for which he lost his job. Also revealed in this article is why Andrew Coyne resigned from The National Post as editorial and comments editor – because “his superiors told him he was not allowed to publish a column dissenting with their endorsement of [Stephen] Harper.”

From 2018, Postmedia urged to review board member’s ethics

It’s a bit of a shocker to learn that David Pecker, who is the publisher of National Enquirer as well as several other magazines, is on the board of Canada’s Postmedia. That fact alone tells us reams about the values and principles of Postmedia. There are a flurry of articles on this here and here and here and here. In March 2018, the Globe and Mail, in an article headed “Torstar, Postmedia and the arrogance of the deal,” referred to Pecker as now “the moral centre of Postmedia’s Board of Directors. With what we’re learning about how Pecker ran his magazines, “moral centre” in this context reflects a vacuum.

Water issues

The Freshwater Alliance is holding a webinar, No Doubt About Drought: Let’s talk about it.

DATE/TIME: Wednesday, August 29, 11 a.m.

Speaker bios:

Dr. Hans Schreier, PhD, is a Professor in the Faculty of Land & Food Systems at the University of British Columbia. His research includes watershed management, land-water interactions (land use and its impact on water resources), and climate change.

Jeff Moore is an Environmental Analyst and Technician with the Cowichan Valley Regional District and lead architect of New Normal Cowichan.

Megan Peloso, MA, is the BC Communications Lead for the Canadian Freshwater Alliance and lead author of 10 Essential Messages for Communicating about Drought. Based out of Smithers, Megan works to raise voices, capacity and awareness around freshwater issues across BC.

Site C: 

Part 1:  Arguments in Site C court case represent ‘cynical denial’ of Indigenous rights: BC Hydro lawyers argue Treaty 8 never guaranteed any “practical, traditional, cultural, or spiritual connection to any land” for First Nations. Read more.

Part 2:  How government restricted media coverage of Site C dam court case: “So it seemed unreal that — in today’s era of digital media — journalists were being denied the right to share and rebroadcast footage of court proceedings on the most expensive infrastructure project in B.C.’s history … when asked what harm could come of allowing the hearings to be broadcast, a lawyer for the federal government argued he feared — get this — viral opportunities. We could become memes, if you’re aware of what memes are,” he laughed. “I’m just trying to think off the top of my head if you’ve seen videos of certain things being songified or raps being made.” Read more.

This First Nation is four steps ahead of climate change

Last week’s Must Reads included an article in Macleans magazine about James Douglas, colonial Governor of Vancouver Island. That article references the Fraser Canyon War of 1857-1858 when the Americans arrived to enact their “manifest destiny” of taking control of the land. This article talks about that event and about the T’eqt”aqtn’mux (the crossing place people) who come from T’eqt’’aqtn (the crossing place). Today, it’s called Kanaka Bar. It was renamed after Governor James Douglas declared the mainland colony of British Columbia. How does all that relate to climate change, you ask? Well, the T’eqt”aqtn’mux are preparing for that, and building their community in the process. Read more.

Chief Dan George’s ‘Lament for Confederation’ for Indigenous peoples in 1967, on Canada’s centenary

This article by the CBC has a recording of Chief Dan George’s Lament for Confederation from 1967. In it he asks, “What has changed?” Last year Canada celebrated another 150 years of colonial rule and, as this CBC piece points out, and as we are well aware, not much has changed for Indigenous peoples. The article includes comments posted by various people that reveal the racism that is still so pervasive within the Canadian Settler population.

Another Nation that is moving forward

In May, this blog had a link to the Nuxalt First Nation in Bella Coola that was building tiny homes in their community. Here’s a more in-depth look at what is happening there.

Excerpt: “The stronger one person gets,” [Louis Edgar] said, “the stronger everyone grows.” Like dominoes, the success of one is the success of all. When one person gets empowered, they empower their family, their community and their Nation, he said. He thinks the program tunes apprentices into the bigger picture, the future of the Nation, not just the day’s work.”

Solar panels and sisterhood

This blog has also previously introduced you to the Tiny House Warriors. Well, this article on solar panels and sisterhood starts with the line, “This is not a protest story.” Indeed, one of the women in this story is from the same Salish Nation as Chief Dan George (George was his Settler name). Not a coincidence, I’m sure. Read more.

Excerpt: “The small army of women providing sustainable solutions to current climate crises across Canada say they have no choice, but to stand up in solidarity, to protect the land, water and future generations.”


Kinder Morgan

Part 1:  KM protestor Jean Swanson gets ready for jail. Read more.

Part 2: How’s this for a new name for the Federal Liberals? Too sarcastic? Too tongue-in-cheek? Too negative? Too much like an attack ad?  Just right?

Do you know what an articulated tug barge is?

Watch this video and send a letter. Read more.

BC’s climate intentions papers: A timid response – and the 12 solutions we really need

Excerpt: “BC’s Ministry of Environment has published a series of Clean Growth Intentions Papers, with a deadline for public feedback of August 24, in the heart of this fire and smoke-filled summer. In my head, I can see that they have been framed in a very positive way, emphasizing the multiple economic benefits of engaging in climate action, reframed as clean growth. But the policies floated contain little that is new. They are really timid. And by downplaying the climate crisis almost to a state of mental non-existence, they have written the urgency out of the picture. In my heart, I feel as if they have been written by a holiday season policy-drone operating on auto-pilot. Hard words, but that’s what I feel.” Read more.



The Green Party of Canada Biennial Convention is getting close

September 28-30, 2018. Read more. Convention 2018 is Sept 28-30 in Vancouver! Join us and help us build for success in 2019. Check out the list of speakers so far.  An outline of the Convention schedule is now available on the GPC website. On that note, if you haven’t already taken advantage of our Convention travel discounts, check them out now to see how you can save on your trip. The special discount room rate at the Westin Bayshore Hotel is still available as well, but don’t forget that the deadline to reserve your room is August 28th!  Info and registration here

 The 2019 Federal election

Part 1:

In Canada’s 2019 election, would this be a good initiative to build a campaign around? Before NIPR’s June AGM, all GPC members and supporters in the riding were sent a survey asking what issues were most important to them right now. The BC referendum on proportional representation came first, but after that was climate change and sustainability. Go to NIPR’s website and leave a comment.

Part 2: The Greens are well positioned to gain in 2019, according to iPolitics. This is definitely a Must Read article if you’re going to be involved in the 2019 campaign.

“Trudeau became prime minister in a political world that has largely disappeared.” Harper is gone, Kathleen Wynn is gone. Andrew Scheer is “a glass of warm milk stamped with a silly smile.” The NDP who voted for the Liberals in 2015 are having buyer’s remorse, but they have an untested new leader and Rachel Notley is burning the NDP brand and in BC, John Horgan has certainly scorched the NDP brand. Read more.

Excerpt: “With both the Liberals and the NDP in somewhat vulnerable positions, 2019 augurs well for the Green Party. The Greens have elected members provincially in British Columbia, Ontario and Prince Edward Island. So it is not pie-in-the-sky to say that Elizabeth May could have some company in Parliament after the next election.”

Part 3:  To get people to embrace change, emphasize what will stay the same. From the Harvard Business Review, “Common wisdom in management science and practice has it that to build support for a change project, visionary leadership is needed to outline what is wrong with the current situation. By explaining how the envisioned change will result in a better and more appealing future, leaders can overcome resistance to change. But our researchrecently published in the Academy of Management Journal, leads us to add a very important caveat to this … Counter-intuitively … effective change leadership has to emphasize continuity — how what is central to “who we are” as an organization will be preserved, despite the uncertainty and changes on the horizon.”

How could this apply to the 2019 Green Party election campaign? Let’s get a conversation going. Go to NIPR’s website and leave a comment.

Part 4:  It’s not all about their base: Canada’s 2019 election will hinge on these voters

Interesting article about the “Persuadables” and the “Persuaders.” Read more.

Excerpt: “In recent years, analysis of politics has been dominated by references to “the base,” or the core supporters of each political party. This is odd because they are the least interesting voters. Mostly, the base is made up of people determined not to be distracted by new facts or better arguments in their support for their party. Instead, election victories happen when parties aren’t just successful in getting out the votes they can usually count on, but when they win the ones they have a shot at. Yes, getting your base excited feels good—but it’s a mere sugar high. In fact, the base can harm that effort to win that broad non-base group of voters. While savvy parties know there is a big pool of swing voters they might be able to attract, they also know that a fired-up base often doesn’t want to compromise much to make that happen.”

Colonial settlers continuing racist policies against Indigenous people

Part 1: Women speak out against criminalization of land defenders, water protectors

“Even though Indigenous women have always been targeted, both in the law directly and indirectly, they continue to stand up for the land and for their children despite knowing what’s coming. They know they’re going to be criminalized. They know they’re going to be painted as some form of criminal.” Read more.

Part 2: Recognition of Rights or Termination of Rights Framework?

“The Trudeau government is committed to table legislation on a Recognition of Rights Framework for Indigenous rights this fall … Beware of federal politicians bearing beads and trinkets.  This framework is not emancipatory and despite effusive press releases from the Prime Minister, has nothing to do with reconciliation. The feds are proposing a framework that functions like a cage, containing Indigenous nations and governments within a legal apparatus that assumes all sovereignty and jurisdiction belong to the federal and provincial governments.” And the thing not included in this ‘framework’? The thing colonial settlers have wanted from the beginning and still want? Land. Read more.

Part 3: Reconciliation requires more than symbolic gestures

The decision to remove of Sir John A. MacDonald’s statue in Victoria has sparked a new conversation in Canada. There are many takes on this discussion, check out this one, The Conversation.

On First Nations issues, there’s a giant gap between Trudeau’s rhetoric and what Canadians really think: exclusive poll

The Angus Reid Institute survey suggests Canadians and their government are on different pages when it comes to the future of Indigenous peoples. Read more. Read the report on the poll itself here.



The Green Party of Canada calls on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to stop fracking across Canada

Send an online letter to PM Trudeau and Minister Carr here.



Germany razes 20 villages for massive opencast coal mine

As a friend of the planet said, “Germany may be at the forefront of renewable energy on many fronts but the reality is they are still back in the 19th centenary regarding coal, as are so many countries around the whole planet.” Read more.

We can build a fossil-free world

People all over the world – city by city, town by town, are ending the age of fossil fuels and building a world of community-led renewable energy.  Read more.

Global Day of Action, September 8, 2018: Real climate leadership rises from the grassroots up

Check out the global day of action. Read more.

What if Mother Nature was on the ballot in 2019?

While this is an American article, everything it says is equally applicable to us in Canada in our next election. Read more.

Excerpt: “What if Mother Nature is on the ballot? What if all the extreme weather this year — linked to climate change — gets even worse and more costly? What if the big 2020 issue is not left-right — but hot-cold or wet-dry? What if the big 2020 issue is not “Who lost Russia?” or “Who lost North Korea?” but “Who lost planet Earth?”

Ever think you might want to live off the grid? Well, here’s a whole new take on that. Living with your airplane – Yes, this is a thing now*

In case you have ever felt sorry for the ultra-rich and their dilemmas with how to spend all their money other than paying living wages to workers, here’s the latest new thing. Communities where you park your plane next to your house and fly in and out of your driveway. Watch this video or this one where the hangar is incorporated into the house! “It doesn’t get any better” than to have a runway right in front of or behind your house! What’s amazing is that this isn’t especially new. Now, to be fair, many of these people seem to be small plane enthusiasts, but oh my gawd! (*In the interests of truth in journalism, this has been a thing for about 20+ years.)

Thought of the day:

Do not lose heart. We were made for these times… Ours is a time of almost daily astonishment and often righteous rage over the latest degradations of what matters most to civilized, visionary people... the fact is we were made for these times. Yes. For years, we have been learning, practicing, been in training for and just waiting to meet on this exact plain of engagement…there have never been more able crafts in the waters than there are right now across the world. And they are fully provisioned and able to signal one another as never before in the history of humankind… Look out over the prow; there are millions of boats of righteous souls on the waters with you. Even though your veneers may shiver from every wave in this stormy roil, I assure you that the long timbers composing your prow and rudder come from a greater forest. That long-grained lumber is known to withstand storms, to hold together, to hold its own, and to advance, regardless. (Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Ph.D)

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