Put garbage shame in a frame
By Ian Cobb
Of the numerous leadership stumbles made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government since 2015, the most ridiculous one has got to be the Philippine garbage debacle.
You know, the thing that prompted Philippine President Rodrigo (I hate drug dealers) Duterte to declare war on Canada if it didn’t pick up its garbage. And by ‘its’ garbage, I mean Chronic Plastics Inc.’s garbage – the company that shipped 103 containers holding 2,450 tons of trash, to the Philippines in 2013 and 2014.
The containers were apparently wrongly labeled as plastics for recycling going to a port near Manila. Upon arrival the shipment was declared abandoned and upon further inspection, it was discovered that the containers were filled with garbage – some right nasty stuff, too.
In September 2015, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) informed the Canadian government of the 103 containers filled with waste left in their nation by the Canadian company.
DFA Assistant Secretary Jesus Domingo said they asked the Canadian government to help remove the waste, but were told it was unable to do so because Canada’s laws prevented it from forcing an exporter to take back the garbage.
Then Canadian Ambassador Neil Reeder told the DFA that Canada had “no domestic or international authority to compel the shipper to return the shipment to Canada.”
How convenient. So what you’re saying is any old corporation can load ships full of steaming shite and deposit them on foreign shores and, “hey, not our prob, man. Law says (chuckle)?”
I’d call it a Trumpwellian development but it began with the Stephan Harper Conservative regime and became rank and foul under Trustfund McShortpants’ stampede of hollow, costumed pandering.
Even more convenient, Chronic Plastics Inc. and its Philippine counterpart are toast; garbage if you will.
So naturally Ottawa had been, up until Duterte blew a gasket, sticking its head in the sand, hoping it would go away.
Meanwhile, despite Canada hiding behind exporter protectionist (party support) legislation that smacks of something Montgomery Burns would author, there is this thing called The Basel Convention, an international treaty designed to control and reduce the trans-boundary movement of hazardous wastes.
The treaty was a global response to the increase in environmental awareness during the 1970s and ‘80s and the recognition of the growing human health and environmental problems associated with the transport of hazardous wastes, especially when it comes from the developed world to developing countries.
Thus far, 188 countries have ratified the convention, including Canada and the Philippines.
The Pacific Centre for Environment Law and Litigation noted April 10 … “In our opinion, there is a strong argument that Canada has violated the Basel Convention in respect of the trans-boundary movements of wastes from Canada to the Philippines in 2013 and 2014 by the Canadian-based company Chronic Inc.”
In other words, Canada, a nation that sanctimoniously crows about how environmentally conscious it is, has gone full-on ‘screw you corporate asshole’ and ignored demands from another nation over it shitting on its lawn.
It took a tin-pot nut biscuit, who is surely destined for a six by eight or a light standard swing, to make TV wrestling style threats before Trudeau and pals, busy going all slow-mo Matrix on the SNC-Lavalin affair, to pay attention.
And on May 2, after six years of being a dick, Canada told the Philippines it would tug home the rotting garbage.
Somehow I am reminded of the sounds of jeering and laughter as a sodden King Arthur and his remaining knight slosh away from the Castle Arghh, thinking of the shittiest job in the world – working on the ship assigned the task of toting this shame back across the Pacific to, lucky, lucky, British Columbia!
Naturally, being ever so forthcoming on how they piss away OUR money, the Liberal government said it would not “speculate” on where the garbage will end up or about how much it will cost taxpayers to solve this now defunct company’s stinky mess.
I wish I could say I made all this up.
To me, this issue showcases the detached arrogance so prevalent in Ottawa (in Parliament, not in Canadian Tire Centre). It is the same arrogance that stirred up so many separatist sentiments in Western Canada when young Justin’s daddy Pierre was busy stuffing full his trust fund.
Put this garbage shame in a frame and call it ‘Federal politics in Canada: Featuring ineffective leadership.’
Nice work you simpering buffoons!
And sorry Philippines. You have a rager with little man syndrome as your leader and we have a bouncy piece of lint with a selfie stick as ours. Leaders, eh? Am I right?
– Ian Cobb is owner/editor of e-KNOW and most assuredly not a journalist being tickled by Trudeau’s tempting taxpayer-funded tidbits in order to control the message.