Comment 30548

By LL (registered) - website | Posted April 27, 2009 at 23:19:34

Does Bombardier contract with the Canadian military or not? If so, then they're a military contractor. Is it really so "ignorant" of me to question the ethics of supporting such behaviour?

Indeed, Canada does not have its own self-contained military-industrial complex. Canadian aerospace companies are part of the US militiary-industrial complex. Is that supposed to be better?

The fact is the Canadian state has profited from war and imperialism. Canada's very origins are in empire - British and American. If nothing else, it has played an ancillary role to the imposition of world order by those two powers.

The Canadian state is currently occupying a foreign country against the will of its people. It played a decisive role in the bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999. It played an odious role in Haiti in 2004. It would have jumped on the Iraq bandwagon if it weren't for the biographical quirks of the prime minister. It's now pursuing "deep integration" with the US. A lot of folks from coast to coast are legitimately concerned about these developments.

Urbanrenaissance mentioned the two world wars. Patriotic myopia on all sides was a main cause of those conflicts. Since then, people have learned to to look a little deeper than reflexive flag hysteria. The state still goes to war, but now millions march in protest. Activists keep tabs on war industries. That's a good thing. Maybe it's one of the reasons Bombardier pulled out of heavy arms production.

I believe progressive municipalities can be an effective counter-balance to empire, especially if a lot of capitalist restructuring is going to be focused on cities (which it will be, if the ruling class has any brains). Some of the earliest institutional dissent to the Iraq war came from progressive city councils. Consumer ethics for institutional purchasing can be a powerful thing.

I never once said we should boycott Bombardier. People who work there obviously make some highly useful products. I just raised the issue.

For what it's worth, I think a more new-school looking streetcar would be right for the Hammer.

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