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Stephen Harper: Crime Minister.

Jesse McLaren

January 3, 2012

The year 2011 was a historic year of revolt—from revolutions across the Arab world, general strikes from Chile to Greece, and a renewed anti-capitalist movement under the banner of “occupy”. Let’s make 2012 another year of revolt, against the 1% regime of our Crime Minister, Stephen Harper.

Despite incessant reassurances of a mythical recovery, 2011 saw a deepening of the global economic crisis, which is now engulfing the Euro. While Harper blames Europe for the crisis, he has been busy with his own economic crimes—bailing out Canadian banks and corporations, threatening 80,000 public sector jobs, and planning to cut $20 billion from Medicare.

The Arab Spring inspired people around the world, but Harper was the last to support Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak. He then joined NATO in highjacking the Libyan Revolution, and is now threatening to join war crimes against Syria and Iran—while remaining complicit with crimes against the people of Afghanistan, Palestine and Bahrain.

To justify spending $490 billion on the military—from fighter jets to battleships—Harper has claimed that “Islamicism” is the major threat, and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney has forced Muslim women to uncover themselves during citizenship ceremonies. These attacks have nothing to do with women’s liberation, as the Tories themselves continue to attack a women’s right to choose.

Meanwhile Harper has continued to commit climate crimes—supporting the Tar Sands and killing the Kyoto Protocol—while continuing colonial crimes of which Attawapiskat was just the tip of the iceberg.

But 2011 also showed the possibility of challenging our Crime Minister. The “orange wave” showed the appetite for a real alternative, and the NDP filibuster in Parliament in support of postal workers gave an example of how Parliament can magnify workplace battles against the 1%.

There is growing opposition from indigenous groups and their allies against the tar sands, including a temporary halt to the Keystone XL pipeline. In Quebec a strike by 200,000 students has laid the groundwork for an even bigger student strike in the spring, inspiring students across English Canada for the February 1 day of action.

As the ongoing Egyptian Revolution shows, the power to challenge the 1% lies in taking the mood of resistance to the streets, schools and workplaces to actively involve the 99%. Let’s occupy 2012.

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