Canadian Indian women "are tired of what's happening"

Craven, Jim jcraven at SPAMclark.edu
Fri Jan 5 16:46:34 MST 2001


There is a non-sequitur here (not Yoshie's): Because a few Indians opposed
to Tribal Corruption claim to favor privatization, because the likes of
Reform and the Tories fish in troubled Indian waters and pretend to support
some activists against Tribal Corruption, "therefore" a) the claim that
there is Tribal Corruption is a false claim and/or a claim that plays into
the hands of the likes of Reform or the Tories; b) an attack against Tribal
corruption objectively supports privatization and de-Tribalization; c)
activists against Tribal corruption are covert/overt agents against the
"real" Tribal authorities and/or in favor of the likes of Reform and the
Tories; d) the "cure" is worse than the disease because the only "cure"
being offered against Tribal corruption is privatization. None of these
assertions/non-sequiturs are true.

The same forces bent on privatization, genocide, de-Indianization, treaty
breaking, forging sell-out treaties etc have historically worked through and
were pimped by the corrupt forces in the Tribes, Bands and Nations. Sell-out
Indians do exactly that--sell-out and cheaply. Some Indians, tired of the
corruption and all the misery and death that corruption brings, desperately
grasp to "the-enemy-of-my-enemy-is-my-friend" solutions and may be drawn to
the likes of Reform, Tories, NDP, Liberals, Democrats, Republicans,
Indepentdents; they are indeed a small minority of the activists and are
getting some press for obvious reasons: they have some standing and are
taking positions that will produce more not less corruption in the end.

But the reality and horrible costs of Tribal corruption are very real and
there are, as Jackson Browne's song suggests "Lives in the Balance". The
actvists you will not see in the press, the real traditionals, dedicated
activists and respected Elders and real Chiefs, will never go for any form
of privatization; they intend nothing less that full and unreserved
nationhood and sovereignty. for those outside of Indian Country, these
articles are written by outsiders who have not even glimpsed the tip of the
iceberg. There is so much more going on; some favor using the elements of
the powers-that-be against other elements of the same (exacerbating
contradicitons in the enemy camp) but most of the grass-roots activists do
know exactly who is who and what is what in Indian Country.

Jim





-----Original Message-----
From: Yoshie Furuhashi [mailto:furuhashi.1 at osu.edu]
Sent: Friday, January 05, 2001 2:42 PM
To: marxism at lists.panix.com
Subject: Re: Canadian Indian women "are tired of what's happening"


While I believe that the charges of corruption, mismanagement, etc.
made by the First Nations Accountability Coalition are true, the
"cure" considered may be worse than the disease, especially if the
dissidents get simply exploited by the Reform Party....

*****   Alberta Report
September 15, 1997
SECTION: v.24(40) S 15'97 pg 8-9
HEADLINE: Bands on the run: indians all over take direct action
against their corrupt leaders
BYLINE: Sillars, Les

...Indian anger against their leadership has reached such a fever
pitch that a solution normally regarded as unthinkable is now being
considered -- privatization of reserve land.  "I think that would be
the best thing," asserts Ms. [Leona] Freed [then of the Dakota Action
Group, now president of the president of the Manitoba chapter of the
First Nations Accountability Coalition].  "The government should
allot [each Indian] his own piece of land, put him on it and say,
'Welcome to the white man's world.'"  She charges that Ottawa's
treaty entitlements system has crippled the ability of Indians to
achieve self-sufficiency.  "It just gets so sickening," she says.  "I
always hear how we gave up our land, it was stolen from us.  Well,
we're going into the 21st century and we did not give up our land --
we signed it away.  It's called treaty rights."

MP Scott, a strong proponent of privatization, explains it would
allow individual natives to borrow money on their own land and give
them incentives to pursue economic development.  Some will fail and
consequently lose their land, he concedes, but it is patronizing to
suggest natives should be denied the same opportunities as other
Canadians.  "There are no guarantees for any of us," he argues.
"Band councils should not have the right to determine who gets the
jobs, the houses, the education and so on."

It has been difficult to get the privatization debate going, admits
Mr. Scott.  The current leadership rejects it as an attack on their
power.  Mr. Scott believes band councils should be transformed into
the equivalents of municipal governments, providing the same
infrastructure services -- with the same level of accountability.

Ordinary Indians are slow to support the idea, Mr. Scott admits,
because they understand that increased opportunity also involves
increased risk.  "But it has caught their attention," he adds.  "Some
are concluding that it should be looked at more closely."  Mr. Scott
concludes that privatization can only become more popular as the
majority of Indians come to realize that the welfare state
administered in Ottawa supposedly for their benefit is the ultimate
source of their misery.   *****

Yoshie





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