Saturday, April 04, 2015

Treaty Process Going Down...What Does Ms. Clark Really Want?


As we noted yesterday, Mr. Harper's man on treaties is running around telling anyone who will listen that they should light their hair on fire because of how bad things are.

But what about those First Nations that are actually working through the process, and making progress, in good faith?

How do they feel about the recent plug-pulling of the Iron Snowbird,  Ms. Christy Clark?

Well, Kathryn Teneese of the Ktunaxa First Nation explains her group's situation in today's Tyee:

...With the Premier's recent decision to pull support for the new Chief Commissioner of the BC Treaty Commission, no one is smiling now. There are more things that are broken than the treaty process in B.C. The province has broken trust and broken our relationship. Premier Clark is dangerously close to cutting the last thread of goodwill with First Nations, squandering a generation of effort to settle old partisan scores -- or was it a "principled policy decision?" As far as we're concerned, neither is helpful.

What we are left with is a reality that the Ktunaxa Nation, currently in stage four of the six-stage treaty process, could be minus one partner at the negotiation table.

Yet there has never been a clearer impetus to negotiate than with the recent Tsilhqot'in decision, which acknowledged aboriginal title for the first time in Canadian history. B.C. treaty negotiators should be receiving new mandates to negotiate that reflect the conditions of aboriginal title as fact.

The Ktunaxa Nation is firmly committed to engaging with governments to address the longstanding, fundamental land question related to issues of title and jurisdiction. We have always been willing to do so. But without a forum for negotiations, one founded in honour and respect, the Ktunaxa Nation will be forced to look at other options for resolving these outstanding matters...

Interestingly, in her piece Ms. Teneese also tells us that our fine Premier was all smiles and photo-op giggles when she visited the Ktunaxa, post Tsilhqot'in,  last summer.

And then the PAB-Bots and the Wizards went to work and released the following on our government's website for their fall roll-out:

B.C. Cabinet and First Nations leaders from throughout the province convened today for a historic day-long dialogue on transforming Crown-First Nations relations in British Columbia.

The Government of British Columbia and First Nations leaders acknowledged that the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in Tsilhqot’in Nation is a historic opportunity to work together to build a new path for recognition and reconciliation in the province.

The decision also establishes a new reality and legal landscape for our transformed relationship, and that implementation of the decision must be a joint endeavour to achieve success and will require hard work...

Which leads us to the billion (or ten) dollar question that has little or nothing whatsoever to do with 'joint endeavours'....

What, exactly, do the Wizards and the Patrons who are giving Ms. Clark her marching orders really want now that they've done their best to stop 'working together' with First Nations in the treaty process?

Well, around here, with an early assist from Charlie Smith of the GStraight, we've been talking a lot about a one-off corporate bonanza buy-out strate(r)gy.

Which, as you might expect, is starting to become conventional wisdom dressed-up in 'essential for the economy' clothing type thingy in the local proMedia.

Think I'm off base on that account?


But get a load of the following, from Peter O'Neil and Rob Shaw's latest in the VSun:

...(Doug Eyford, Mr. Harper's man) said the Musqueam First Nation in Vancouver is keen to strike a fisheries deal that could lead to a future self-government arrangement. “There are options outside the treaty process that enable aboriginal groups to influence land and resource decisions and benefit from developments,” he wrote.

Those types of one-off economic deals appear to be the focus of Premier Christy Clark’s government, which recently announced an abrupt change of direction for the B.C. Treaty Commission and withdrew its support for incoming treaty commissioner George Abbott. Clark said last week the treaty commission’s “status quo is not working” and opened the door to shutting it down...

Expediency, thy name is Clark.

Speaking of which (but not pipeline deals and/or condo-grabbing land jacks from parks or anything).

What is that fine fellow the Railgate boys liked to call the Mexican up to these days anyway?



Anonymous said...

Watching "Voice of BC" with Vaughn Palmer and guests Grand Chiefs Edward John and Stewart Phillip.

Surreal to watch knowing that none of the 3 have yet figured out that it is Harper & CPC who were behind Abbott's firing.

e.a.f. said...

once bill c-51 has passed any protests by First Nations will result in them being arrested as terrorists. The trade deal with China, which harper signed will give China a lot more clout in Canada. If they want to do something no environmentalist or First Nations person is going to stop them. They will just notify harper and a lot of people will be arrested. The RCMP were used to deal with protests regarding fracking by First Nations in N.B. last yr. Later this year, they'll declare them terrorists and that will end all of it or so harper and his herd hope. clarke is simply waiting for Bill C-51 to pass.