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Author Topic: Federal Court rules Wheat Board can keep barley monopoly
unionist
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posted 31 July 2007 06:54 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Excellent news:

quote:
A judge has struck down the federal government's move to strip the Canadian Wheat Board of its monopoly on western barley sales.

In a ruling issued Tuesday, Federal Court Judge Dolores Hansen said the government overstepped its authority in trying to end the monopoly through a simple cabinet order. [...]

The government changed the board's barley-handling through regulations approved by the Conservative cabinet.

Critics successfully argued the change can only be made by passing a law in Parliament — something that could be blocked by the opposition.


Source.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Liberaler
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posted 31 July 2007 06:57 PM      Profile for Liberaler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
Excellent news:

Source.


Looks good on the Conservatives


From: Toronto Ontario | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 31 July 2007 07:10 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
History repeats itself. Thank goodness for our non-elected judiciary:

quote:
The CWB had in 1949 also become the sole marketing agency for oats and barley; however, oats were removed from CWB jurisdiction on 1 August 1989 and barley bound for the United States was removed on 1 August 1993 by Order in Council. On 10 September, within ten days of its date of application, the Federal Court dismissed this decision on the grounds that such a change could be made only through legislation passed by Parliament, not by Cabinet order. The challenge had come from Prairie Pools Inc., which argued that the CWB’s orderly marketing powers were too historic and fundamentally important to be arbitrarily altered by Cabinet decree. Because there were indications that a solid majority of growers opposed the removal of barley from the CWB’s jurisdiction, producers called for a plebiscite on the issue. On 20 November 1993, the new Liberal government announced it was dropping a court appeal of the 10 September decision (which had been initiated by the outgoing Conservative government). The barley issue continued to fester until a referendum in early 1997 demonstrated that 63% of Prairie farmers supported marketing their barley through the Board.

From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
John K
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posted 31 July 2007 07:13 PM      Profile for John K        Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
What a pleasant surprise.

More details - including a link to the Federal Court judgement - are available here:
CWB vs. Harper Cons


From: Edmonton | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
Farmpunk
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posted 02 August 2007 05:24 AM      Profile for Farmpunk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Yes, excellent news. Indeed, it's always good news to hear that farmers aren't allowed to have more than one marketing choice at their disposal.

Really, why would the CWB allow farmers the option to market their own products? A silly idea: farmers aren't smart or educated enough to make their own economic decisions. Besides, the board's trade with Algeria might get hurt and the farmers might get current market pricing. Can't have that. Imagine what farmers would do with independence. They might even sell to the USA.


From: SW Ontario | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 02 August 2007 05:41 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Farmpunk:
A silly idea: farmers aren't smart or educated enough to make their own economic decisions.

By golly - why stop at farmers? What about workers?

Who needs trade unions?

Imagine the notion individual workers aren't smart and educated enough to negotiate their own terms and conditions of employment with multinational corporations... or governments...

Unions are obviously just an insult to the intelligence of employees.

Too bad barley farmers don't appreciate their own business acumen. Last time they had a fair vote (1997), they voted 63% against making their own economic decisions.

It took a rigged vote, with no voters' list, numbered ballots (!), exclusion of 16,000 voters because they hadn't sold to the CWB in two years, firing the head of the Wheat Board, muzzling the free speech of the elected directors, a phoney "question", and a self-serving interpretation of the vote results, to come up with Mr. Strahl's draconian action - which was then ruled illegal by the courts.

It doesn't take brains or education for an individual farmer to market her own barley. It takes wealth. In my book, the interests of the non-wealthy trump those of the wealthy every day of the week. Sorry to show my bias here.

[ 02 August 2007: Message edited by: unionist ]


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
non sequitur
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posted 02 August 2007 06:16 AM      Profile for non sequitur     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

By golly - why stop at farmers? What about workers?

Who needs trade unions?

Imagine the notion individual workers aren't smart and educated enough to negotiate their own terms and conditions of employment with multinational corporations... or governments...

Unions are obviously just an insult to the intelligence of employees.

Too bad barley farmers don't appreciate their own business acumen. Last time they had a fair vote (1998), they voted 63% against making their own economic decisions.

It took a rigged vote, with no voters' list, numbered ballots (!), exclusion of 16,000 voters because they hadn't sold to the CWB in two years, firing the head of the Wheat Board, muzzling the free speech of the elected directors, a phoney "question", and a self-serving interpretation of the vote results, to come up with Mr. Strahl's draconian action - which was then ruled illegal by the courts.

It doesn't take brains or education for an individual farmer to market her own barley. It takes wealth. In my book, the interests of the non-wealthy trump those of the wealthy every day of the week. Sorry to show my bias here.

[ 02 August 2007: Message edited by: unionist ]


I thought the last time the farmers had a choice by vote they took oats out of the CWB...


From: Regina | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
quelar
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posted 02 August 2007 06:20 AM      Profile for quelar     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
They've voted on this a few times, each time siding on keeping the wheat board.

Sure, there are a couple of farms who don't like it, but the majority does. So too bad.

Anyway, what do the farmers think is going to happen? It's not like suddenly their prices are going to go way up (they're already on their way up due to biofuels) and have access to more markets.

All that's going ot happen is a number of 'competing' corporate run wheat organizations are going to jump into the game and shift the profit away from the wheat board and over to the corporations.


From: In Dig Nation | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Frustrated Mess
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posted 02 August 2007 06:30 AM      Profile for Frustrated Mess   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
How did the Wheat Board come about? I think a little historical context is important.

I appreciate that in the last few years wheat and barley prices have been good and some farmers want to bust the marketing board. They have before under similar circumstances. But then, surprise, surprise, prices went soft and farmers whined to governments to help and the wheat board was re-established.

I think if farmers want to kill the wheat board for short term greed they should be allowed to. But I think they should also be informed, very clearly, that when prices again go soft, they are not to return to government and the taxpayer for a bailout. If they want to play by free market rules, then play by free market rules with the full understanding that the free market produces more losers than winners in the long term. Make it plain: Don't come back hat in hand!

That should equally apply to all farmers including tobacco farmers who made investments when the writing was on the wall.

Farmers always talk the talk about free markets and capitalism and many hate tax dollars supporting the poor and working poor, but they become dyed in the wool pink proponents of the welfare state when it is their own incomes and property that are at stake.

How much are farmers currently demanding from all levels of government? In the billions. BILLIONS!

Why? As proponents of free market economies they should suck it up and sell to mega-corps or land speculators. That is what free market capitalism is all about. So what is their problem?


From: doom without the gloom | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Farmpunk
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posted 02 August 2007 06:34 AM      Profile for Farmpunk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Unionist, crap, you got me. Here I thought farmers, as petty bourgeoise, were doomed. So why support the febble efforts of the petty minded?

How much does it cost to market grains?

I put my soybeans into storage, a co-op storage. Then I pick up the phone and call and sell them whenever I want, usually after watching the market, or reading, studying trends. Then the cheque is either mailed to me or I can go and get it. It's not that difficult, and I have no one to blame or congratulate but myself.

I guess the cost difference in the marketing, alluded to by Unionist must be in long distance charges, mail service, and gas consumption vs having a board do that work for me.

I find it odd that in most other aspects of our lives we're all fired up to keep our options open, freedom of choice, or we fight to maintain or expand these freedoms, but when we discuss an issue like the CWB, there's no continuity of thought.

If the farmers want to keep the board's rule, fine. They've voted on it and they'll fight to maintain their board. I have no issue with that.

However, in my mind, the difference between the board's monopoly on certain products, durum wheat, barley, is little different than Monsanto's ownership of a product like Round-Up Ready Soybeans. I can't grow those beans and keep seed back for the next planting, by law, enforced by our government. Similarly, if I lived in a province that is under the aegis of the CWB, I wouldn't be able to sell durum wheat without the Board. It amounts to the same problem in my eyes: a corporate entity controlling a natural resource. The monopoly isn't on marketing, it's on the product. Or am I mis-understanding this?


From: SW Ontario | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 02 August 2007 06:35 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by non sequitur:

I thought the last time the farmers had a choice by vote they took oats out of the CWB...


News to me.

Oats, which formed less than 1/2 of 1% of CWB business, were removed by another Conservative government in 1989. Never heard of any vote. There was no court challenge.

The emboldened government tried to remove barley in August 1993. Prairie Pool challenged it in court, and the move was reversed within a few days. The last vote I'm aware of was 1997, when 62.9% of voters favoured retention of the barley monopoly.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Life, the universe, everything
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posted 02 August 2007 06:56 AM      Profile for Life, the universe, everything     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Uuhh farmpunk you realize that the CWB has a farmer controlled board. Those positions are voted on by farmers and they keep returning a single desk majority. Maybe western farmers are smart enough to know that they do better using collective clout. Trying to comapre the west to Ontario is a mugs game. In Ontario you can truck anything to our major markets-right from the farm- in about 3 hours, four tops. Much different in the west. First of all our largest farms are gardens compared to the average western farm operation so we are talking much bigger volumes. That takes rail cars. Distance to markets and/or ports is much farther. Again that takes rail cars. Get rid of the board and a lot of those sidings and small town lines are gone and guess who will have to pay more for transport costs- you got it farmers.
So in the end I will put my trust in other farmers, rather than an ideologically driven government. They fought to get the board in the first place and the majority of them are fighting to keep it.
It is a bit smarmy to complain about farmers being considered dumb to then do the exact same thing when looking at farmers, who farm in a completely different context, figure that their best interests lie in maintaining a single desk.

[ 02 August 2007: Message edited by: Life, the universe, everything ]


From: a little to the left - a bit more-there perfect | Registered: Mar 2007  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 02 August 2007 07:16 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Farmpunk:
It amounts to the same problem in my eyes: a corporate entity controlling a natural resource. The monopoly isn't on marketing, it's on the product. Or am I mis-understanding this?

Yeah, I think you are.

I have no problem whatsoever with monopolies - that are owned by the producers. In fact, that's how I believe the entire society should be organized.

It's the huge corporations owned by dividend-collecting stock-speculating non-producing freeloaders that I have a problem with - whether they are monopolies or not. They produce nothing, and they reap everything.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
Life, the universe, everything
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posted 02 August 2007 08:06 AM      Profile for Life, the universe, everything     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Plus the monoply is marketing food grade barley, not on producing it. Anyone can grow barley, they can sell it into feed lot alley in Alberta if them want. Stuff it in pillowcases and build a house with it if they want. All marketing is done through the board, and even if you want to do some self-marketing you can do that through provisions of the board. The only thing you can't do is under-bid other farmers so that all farmers can get a good return by working together.
From: a little to the left - a bit more-there perfect | Registered: Mar 2007  |  IP: Logged
Farmpunk
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posted 02 August 2007 08:34 AM      Profile for Farmpunk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
How many chickens can you sell, Life? How much milk? Legally. Do you find your situation argeeable?

I'm guilty of splitting hairs, to be sure, on CWB issues. There is a reason why it exists, and people I trust argue in its favour, and for its continued existence.

But it's been my experience with ag marketing boards, ones with power, that there is a clique of backroom brokering and behind the scenes deal making, cutting out the producers from vertical integrations, or ignoring concerns that come from the ground up. Just because the CWB is made up of farmers and purports to work in the best interest of its members does not put it above scrutiny, and shouldn't be used to put down legitimate concerns (of the roughly %30 of the voters) who dare to think differently.

Of course, all this goes on while Canada is attempting to open up markets worldwide while perserving it's supply managed sectors.

Is the shipping distance to Algeria less than it is to the US?

[ 02 August 2007: Message edited by: Farmpunk ]


From: SW Ontario | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
quelar
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posted 02 August 2007 08:43 AM      Profile for quelar     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Sure, those 30% should have their voices heard, and we've been hearing them. It's just that the other 60-70% have continuously supported the long term survival of the Wheat Board.

Democracy actually wins for a change.


From: In Dig Nation | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
non sequitur
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posted 02 August 2007 09:16 AM      Profile for non sequitur     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by quelar:
Sure, those 30% should have their voices heard, and we've been hearing them. It's just that the other 60-70% have continuously supported the long term survival of the Wheat Board.

Democracy actually wins for a change.


Except for central canadian farmers, who can market their grain to whomever they please.

Why isn't the NDP calling for a truly Canadian CWB?


From: Regina | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 02 August 2007 09:20 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by non sequitur:

Why isn't the NDP calling for a truly Canadian CWB?

Why, are you?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
josh
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posted 02 August 2007 10:46 AM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Great news! Strahl can take his bogus referendum question and shove it.
From: the twilight zone between the U.S. and Canada | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
non sequitur
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posted 02 August 2007 11:27 AM      Profile for non sequitur     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:

Why, are you?


It just seems that having a federally collective marketing board would be preferable to a western marketing board.


From: Regina | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
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posted 02 August 2007 03:22 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by non sequitur:

Except for central canadian farmers, who can market their grain to whomever they please.

Why isn't the NDP calling for a truly Canadian CWB?



A good start to the answer to your problem was already posted above.

quote:
Uuhh farmpunk you realize that the CWB has a farmer controlled board. Those positions are voted on by farmers and they keep returning a single desk majority. Maybe western farmers are smart enough to know that they do better using collective clout. Trying to comapre the west to Ontario is a mugs game. In Ontario you can truck anything to our major markets-right from the farm- in about 3 hours, four tops. Much different in the west. First of all our largest farms are gardens compared to the average western farm operation so we are talking much bigger volumes. That takes rail cars. Distance to markets and/or ports is much farther. Again that takes rail cars. Get rid of the board and a lot of those sidings and small town lines are gone and guess who will have to pay more for transport costs- you got it farmers.
So in the end I will put my trust in other farmers, rather than an ideologically driven government. They fought to get the board in the first place and the majority of them are fighting to keep it.
It is a bit smarmy to complain about farmers being considered dumb to then do the exact same thing when looking at farmers, who farm in a completely different context, figure that their best interests lie in maintaining a single desk.

From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
non sequitur
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posted 03 August 2007 07:53 AM      Profile for non sequitur     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I don't think that is a particularly good answer. Due to Liberal and PC incompetence, most of the secondary rail lines in the west were eliminated. Farmers often have to truck their grain hundreds of kms to the nearest terminal. Whereas 15 years ago, the SWP, UGG and Pioneer had literally thousands of elevators across SK, now there are less than 200 (my count from the SWP website shows 32 elevators/terminals in active use).
From: Regina | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
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posted 03 August 2007 08:57 AM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by non sequitur:
I don't think that is a particularly good answer. Due to Liberal and PC incompetence, most of the secondary rail lines in the west were eliminated. Farmers often have to truck their grain hundreds of kms to the nearest terminal. Whereas 15 years ago, the SWP, UGG and Pioneer had literally thousands of elevators across SK, now there are less than 200 (my count from the SWP website shows 32 elevators/terminals in active use).

You are right apples are not oranges.

From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Farmpunk
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posted 03 August 2007 09:24 AM      Profile for Farmpunk     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I still don't undestand the black-white, Pro-CWB or no-CWB, reactions from the non-farming crowd. What is it about the CWB that creates such strong opinions in the progressive crowd? Not slamming anyone, just curious.

What is the percentage of voting vs non-voting farmers? Do they all cast ballots, one hundred percent? Or is this a democratic exercise similar to our overall voting trends: less people voting, and the reps who get in are historically less than sensitive to the "real" issues than they should be? What is the farm size breakdown in the membership and how do smaller farmers vote vs the largers operations? Young vs old? I understand there is a north-south split.

Other ag sectors, in other provinces, have strong marketing boards with provisions for independent marketing. I believe that both BC and Alberta allow "small" farms to raise and sell in the range of 2000kgs of poultry products outside the respective associations. I can't find my Small Farmer magazine, but the head of the Alberta Poultry Producers said that these operations have minimal to no effect on the overall market. Thank goodness for the Ontario Poultry Producers, who just this year have allowed farmers to raise, and sell (!), 300 birds. That number was far below what the Ecological Farmers Of Ontario were asking for, and comes with strange provisios about how the birds can be marketed. (sidenote: Life, you noticed recent farm press about how the big poultry ops want the small growers closely monitored because we're more of a risk for avian influenza than the big barns? Because most small birds are raised more free ranging, access to outside, and therefore come into more potential contact with wild birds carrying strains of the virus. Had to laugh at the weirdness of that one: Keep the birds indoors for public safety!).

The CWB, even with a %30 loss of farmers (a pure approximation, working with the numbers in this thread) would still control the majority of the durum wheat and barley, and would likely maintain its customers in Algeria and China. But with less product on the market (most in the south of the CWB area would presumably ship to the US markets), less product availible, would that not force a higher price to be paid to the CWB? Or does the CWB have a vested interest in selling grain below current market costs, or at a regulated cost, to certain markets?

Anyone have a link that shows the farm size and\or production-percentage of pro vs no CWB members? A lot of what I posted above would depend on that ratio.


From: SW Ontario | Registered: Jul 2006  |  IP: Logged
N.Beltov
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posted 03 August 2007 09:33 AM      Profile for N.Beltov   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
From a recent release by the CCPA

quote:
Adrian Measner: Why is our Prime Minister so focused on this issue?

We see the influence of ideology and what I would view as a personal agenda dating back to his days with the National Citizens Coalition.

We also see the intervention of some very large companies whose shareholders will benefit enormously from Harper¹s efforts.

A recent newspaper article talked about the price of gas at the pumps, saying that while it is easy to say ³competition will take care of everything², when you have a few sellers and many buyers as is the case in the oil industry you experience higher prices at the pumps. That is because oil companies set prices as a cartel. Given that truth how can anyone believe the arguments of Rolf Penner of the Frontier Institute and other right-wing think tanks supporting Harper¹s agricultural agenda, that destroying the CWB and forcing many farmer sellers to sell their crops to a few private grain buyers is going to give farmers higher prices. It defies the logic of supply and demand, and defies any real-life examples in other industries.

and some history by Measner ...

quote:
This is a government that would initially not engage at all in policy discussion because the decisions abut the CWB were already made. This is a government that only after much outrage and pressure moved to engage, but then sought direction only from the groups that agreed with its position. This is a government that placed a gag order on the very organization, the CWB, whose future was at stake ­ the only organization that was large enough and knowledgeable enough to be a balancing force against the government agenda.

This is a government that terminated the terms of its appointed directors, including mine, before our terms were up, in order to alter the composition of the CWB Board ­ a Board on which eight of the ten democratically elected farmers disagreed with the government¹s direction.

This is a government that held a plebiscite that prompted at least one professional pollster to question whether the authors of the questions were either incompetent or diabolical. (emphasis - N.Beltov) Two other professional pollsters said that the questions would not yield meaningful results. The plebiscite had no official voters¹ list for scrutiny; multiple ballots were sent to many voters; and the ballots were numbered. And then, when after all of that the government failed to get the results it wanted, it simply added two of the questions together to justify its predetermined actions!

So, in reply to

quote:
I still don't undestand the black-white, Pro-CWB or no-CWB, reactions from the non-farming crowd ...

... a better question would be, "Why is the Prime Minister so antagonistic to the Canadian Wheat Board?"

And Measner has provided an excellent answer.

[ 03 August 2007: Message edited by: N.Beltov ]


From: Vancouver Island | Registered: May 2003  |  IP: Logged
josh
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posted 06 August 2007 06:41 AM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

Agriculture Minister Chuck Strahl is considering new Canadian Wheat Board legislation after his government was slapped on the wrist by the Federal Court of Canada for bypassing Parliament.

The federal plan to bust the board's monopoly on barley sales through a simple cabinet order was rejected by the court last week as unlawful because the changes were not approved by MPs.

. . . .

In a minority Parliament where opposition MPs have regularly attacked Conservative plans for the board, a government bill that ends the monopoly over Prairie wheat and barley sales would have little hope of becoming law.



http://tinyurl.com/2g7cgh


From: the twilight zone between the U.S. and Canada | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
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posted 06 August 2007 06:57 AM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I would be interested in hearing Farmpunk's reaction to Frustrated Mess's post:

quote:
I appreciate that in the last few years wheat and barley prices have been good and some farmers want to bust the marketing board. They have before under similar circumstances. But then, surprise, surprise, prices went soft and farmers whined to governments to help and the wheat board was re-established.

I think if farmers want to kill the wheat board for short term greed they should be allowed to. But I think they should also be informed, very clearly, that when prices again go soft, they are not to return to government and the taxpayer for a bailout. If they want to play by free market rules, then play by free market rules with the full understanding that the free market produces more losers than winners in the long term. Make it plain: Don't come back hat in hand!

That should equally apply to all farmers including tobacco farmers who made investments when the writing was on the wall.

Farmers always talk the talk about free markets and capitalism and many hate tax dollars supporting the poor and working poor, but they become dyed in the wool pink proponents of the welfare state when it is their own incomes and property that are at stake.

How much are farmers currently demanding from all levels of government? In the billions. BILLIONS!

Why? As proponents of free market economies they should suck it up and sell to mega-corps or land speculators. That is what free market capitalism is all about. So what is their problem?


I don't know much about the Wheat Board or what legitimate grievances some farmers might have about it. But that post by FM makes sense to me. I also know that Farmpunk is a reasonable person, and that he may have a counter-argument, and I'd love to hear it.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
sgm
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posted 31 August 2007 09:51 AM      Profile for sgm     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Ag minister Gerry Ritz announced yesterday that the gov't will be appealing the federal court decision:
quote:
BALGONIE -- The Conservative government plans to appeal a court ruling that prevented the Canadian Wheat Board's monopoly on western barley exports from ending Aug. 1, Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz announced Thursday.

Flanked by a small group of farmers in a farmyard east of Regina, Ritz said he has asked lawyers to file a notice of appeal in the Federal Court of Appeal as soon as possible.

A Federal Court ruling on July 31 prevented the opening of the barley market hours before the change was set to take effect.

We in the government have not hidden the fact that we are disappointed with the decision of that Federal Court," said the Battlefords-Lloydminster MP named agriculture minister two weeks ago.


The NDP reaction:

quote:
"They have no business going down this costly, expensive route of appealing a very clear court decision," said Judy Wasylycia-Leis, Winnipeg North NDP member of Parliament who attended the announcement.

"This government feels that it made an election promise. Well, just because it has an election promise doesn't make it legal," she said.


Link.


From: I have welcomed the dawn from the fields of Saskatchewan | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Life, the universe, everything
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posted 31 August 2007 02:08 PM      Profile for Life, the universe, everything     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Is it just me, or did anyone read the location as "balongie". Probably mor fitting for this idiotic action
From: a little to the left - a bit more-there perfect | Registered: Mar 2007  |  IP: Logged
josh
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Babbler # 2938

posted 30 January 2008 06:51 AM      Profile for josh     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz issued an ultimatum to the Canadian Wheat Board yesterday, saying he intends to introduce legislation to end the board's monopoly on barley sales with or without its support.

After meeting with major players from the barley industry yesterday, Mr. Ritz urged the board to back the government's efforts to create an open market for barley at its meetings in Winnipeg this week.

Mr. Ritz said having the Wheat Board onside would remove any political barriers to getting legislation passed. At present, the opposition parties are in favour of maintaining the board's monopoly power.

The minister's request puts the board in a difficult position because it would be contrary to the Canadian Wheat Board Act for the board to approve deregulation.



http://tinyurl.com/2pkmv7


From: the twilight zone between the U.S. and Canada | Registered: Aug 2002  |  IP: Logged
thorin_bane
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posted 30 January 2008 12:06 PM      Profile for thorin_bane     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Accountable transparent AND democractic. lol when will it end.
From: Looking at the despair of Detroit from across the river! | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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Babbler # 11323

posted 26 February 2008 06:57 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Excellent!!! The courts RULE!

Court rules against Ottawa on barley monopoly - again

quote:
The Federal Court of Appeal has upheld a lower court ruling which said the Conservative cabinet exceeded its power when it tried to strip the wheat board of its barley monopoly.

The ruling means the government will need to pass a law in Parliament to make the change — something that will require opposition support. [...]

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz has said he will table a bill to that effect in the coming days, although the Liberals have promised to fight the plan.



From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
thorin_bane
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Babbler # 6194

posted 28 February 2008 05:57 PM      Profile for thorin_bane     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
hopefully the libs do something to counter the "law abiding" transparent and accountable conservatives. BTW will they also follow the law about "Attempting to bribe a public official."? I doubt it. Thank you Mr Cadman for maybe saving this country from beyond the pale.
From: Looking at the despair of Detroit from across the river! | Registered: Jun 2004  |  IP: Logged
laine lowe
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Babbler # 13668

posted 28 February 2008 06:24 PM      Profile for laine lowe     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Good news for a change.

Give Harper long enough, and he will change the judiciary system to reflect that of the US, his most favourite place in the whole wide world. At that point, those nasty liberal judges won't foil his plans.


From: north of 50 | Registered: Dec 2006  |  IP: Logged
kingblake
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posted 01 March 2008 03:32 PM      Profile for kingblake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The legislation will be introduced on Monday, and the Cons are threatening to make it vote a confidence vote. Click.

It'll almost be worth it to see Goodale squirm....

From: In Regina, the land of Exotica | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 01 March 2008 03:53 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
In normal times, it would be insane for the Tories to make this a confidence motion. They could risk being massacred in Manitoba and Saskatchewan just over this. But these are not normal times. The cowardly Liberals will agree to (or abstain from) anything.
From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
kingblake
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posted 01 March 2008 04:14 PM      Profile for kingblake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If they can capitulate on Kyoto, the budget, and Afghanistan, I would be surprised if barley marketing were the line in the sand.

Sadly, the Conservatives are popular enough that I don't see this massively eroding their support, at least in Sask. I don't know about Manitoba. I suppose that if this made enough of their rural vote stay home and enough of the Liberal vote either do the same or come to the NDP in disgust over their capitulation, then some seats would come in to play. But I don't think that's a given... Also, people who supported the Cons in the last election knew where they stood on the CWB, so this isn't a *huge* surprise...

From: In Regina, the land of Exotica | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 01 March 2008 04:41 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by kingblake:
Also, people who supported the Cons in the last election knew where they stood on the CWB, so this isn't a *huge* surprise...

Still, a minority government falling on this very issue is much huger than just a platform item. If there were defenders of small farmers in the House, don't you think it could be turned into a damaging issue for Harper?


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
kingblake
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posted 01 March 2008 04:48 PM      Profile for kingblake     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I guess you're right, it being a ballot issue is different than it being buried in their platform. That being said, guys like David Anderson, Gerry Ritz, Breitkreuz, and the rural-rural MPs have never made any bones (Anderson even made his career) in hating the Board.

More damaging and possible is the prospect of Con supporters in the rural portion of some of the urban-rural seats (Palliser, Stoon-Rosetown, etc.) staying home. I think that's the best that can be hoped for, but if Harper is poised for a majority, I don't think many would jump ship now. I wish that weren't the case.

From: In Regina, the land of Exotica | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
NP
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Babbler # 226

posted 02 March 2008 01:03 PM      Profile for NP   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
In normal times, it would be insane for the Tories to make this a confidence motion. They could risk being massacred in Manitoba and Saskatchewan just over this. But these are not normal times. The cowardly Liberals will agree to (or abstain from) anything.

I don't know why this would hurt the Tories out here in Saskatchewan. A majority of the farmers here voted against the board, and those that didn't are not likely to vote for Dion's Liberals or Layton's NDP as an alternative...


From: The city that rhymes with fun | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 02 March 2008 01:10 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by NP:
A majority of the farmers here voted against the board,

Ummm, yeah, according to Chuck Strahl they did, but everyone knows the vote was rigged by asking three questions instead of two:

quote:
National Farmers Union president Stewart Wells called the plebiscite "hideously flawed" and misleading.

"I’m not surprised at the outcome, because when you ask a misleading question, you will get a misleading result," Wells said in a news release. "The anti-CWB options, combined together, received 62 per cent, but Option 2 was deliberately misleading and offered farmers an unrealistic expectation."


That's besides the fact that the government fires anyone who supports the CWB's monopoly.

The government falling on this issue would present the matter much more starkly, and Harper won't be able to control the debate.

I'm not saying it will tip the balance, but to suggest that Saskatchewan farmers "voted against" the CWB on barley is to accept Harper's propaganda undiluted.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
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posted 20 June 2008 10:06 AM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Another big victory:

Canadian Wheat Board gag order unconstitutional, court rules

quote:
Canada's agriculture minister violated the Charter of Rights and Freedoms when he issued a gag order on officials with the Canadian Wheat Board in 2006, the Federal Court has ruled.

Then Agriculture Minister Chuck Strahl's 2006 directive telling board officials not to spend money advocating in favour of the single-desk grain marketing system was contrary to the Wheat Board Act and violated people's constitutional right to freedom of expression, Justice Roger Hughes wrote in the 34-page decision released late Thursday.

"It is a fundamental tenet of a free and democratic society that the citizens of a country agree to be governed and obey the laws if proper and fairly imposed, and that the government conduct itself in accordance with those laws," Hughes said in the decision. "It is a bargain that must be kept by both sides."


Once again, the courts step to defend our fundamental rights where the Loyal Opposition is incapable of stopping this draconian government from ruling as if it had a majority.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
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posted 20 June 2008 10:49 AM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It is pretty much a no brainer that you can't overturn a statute, passed by Parliament, by means of a Regulation, which is simply imposed by Cabinet.

Statutes, once proclaimed, can only be repealed by other statutes.

This sort of behaviour by Harper is a violation of an important democratic principle.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Left J.A.B.
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Babbler # 9046

posted 20 June 2008 10:53 AM      Profile for Left J.A.B.     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by unionist:
[QB]Ummm, yeah, according to Chuck Strahl they did, but everyone knows the vote was rigged by asking three questions instead of two:
QB]

Even more rigged than you know

From at June 17 NFU media release. It is long, but it is worth the read for anyone who thinks this is a government that is remotely interested in democratic reform.


quote:
SECRET CABINET DOCUMENT CONTAINED DETAILED PLANS FOR DESTROYING FARMER CONTROL OF CWB

In a secret Cabinet briefing document dated August 10, 2006, the Harper Government spelled out a methodical, step-by-step plan to destroy the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) single desk for wheat and barley.

The document listed nearly every totalitarian tactic the government subsequently used against the CWB, including: a gag order, an attempt to change the CWB mandate through Cabinet Order, firing CWB CEO Adrian Measner and other appointed Directors and replacing them with Directors who “favour marketing choice,” a plebiscite with a three-part question and “no specified percentage” for victory.

The previously-classified Cabinet document was made public by lawyers representing the CWB during a court hearing in Winnipeg June 16. The six-page document contained several blacked-out portions, but listed a number of “options” the Harper Cabinet could use to circumvent the democratic Parliamentary process.

The document clearly shows the Harper Government had a pre-determined agenda, and was determined not to let democracy or real information get in the way, said National Farmers Union President Stewart Wells. “This document proves the anti-democratic actions of the Harper Government were mapped out in advance. Also, keep in mind that in court documents from the previous case led by the Friends of the Canadian Wheat Board, the Harper Government admitted that it had done absolutely no financial analysis of the effects of weakening or destroying the CWB.”

Among the “options” contained in the once-secret document are:

1. Set up a “non-binding” vote among wheat and barley producers after implementing a gag order on the CWB to prevent any advocacy for the single desk option. The outcome of the vote would be pre-determined: “Following the vote, the Minister would return to Cabinet with the next steps to end the compulsory aspects of the CWB and to implement marketing choice for producers.”

2. Manipulation of the results of the plebiscite. The document states the government should tabulate the results to suit its objective. “There would be no specified percentage that constitutes sufficient support for a given option.”

3. Replace the appointed directors, “including the CEO, with individuals who favour marketing choice.” The document noted that if the government appointed five directors, and was able to gain “as few as three elected directors who favour marketing choice,” this “would constitute a majority of the board of directors and would be able to use the discretion provided to the CWB by the current legislation to lessen the compulsory aspects of the CWB and provide more choice to producers.”

4. Table legislation aimed at removing the requirement for a vote by producers from the CWB Act. The document admits this option would be unlikely to pass through Parliament until the Conservative Party achieved a majority following a general election.

4. The use of “Orders-in-Council” to force the CWB to “do certain things” to weaken the single desk.

Wells said the Cabinet briefing document is “an incriminating document” that spells out, in the government’s own words, its intention to end farmers’ democratic control of their marketing agency.



From: 4th and Main | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
unionist
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 11323

posted 20 June 2008 07:28 PM      Profile for unionist     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by jeff house:
It is pretty much a no brainer that you can't overturn a statute, passed by Parliament, by means of a Regulation, which is simply imposed by Cabinet.

Agreed, but it's unfortunate that private citizens have to go to court to enforce statutes passed by this Parliament (e.g. the Kyoto bill) which the Harper government proudly flout.

Listen to the arrogant voice of dictatorship and lawlessness:

quote:
Harper, asked about the ruling in Saskatoon, said he hadn't had a chance to take a look at the decision.

But he said his government will win the broader fight about what's best for farmers, no matter the number of court challenges.

"The bottom line is this, mark my words," Harper said. "Western Canadian farmers want this freedom and they are going to get it and anybody who stands in their way is going to get walked over."


Spoken like any two-bit fascist who knows that there is no one in Parliament with the nerve to stop him.


From: Vote QS! | Registered: Dec 2005  |  IP: Logged

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