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Foreign interference/collusion in Canadian elections


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#1 Mike K.

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 04:13 AM

Oh my...

This story has all the elements of a fiction novel. Unfortunately it’s real. Piece by meticulously researched piece, B.C.-based independent researcher Vivian Krause spent almost 10 years exposing the story. Every detail has been corroborated, including with American and Canadian tax records, together with documents and statements from the perpetrators themselves.

...

What would become a massively disruptive intrusion into Canadian affairs would take years and a large amount of money. Enter the Rockefeller Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. They, along with environmentalist charities, poured hundreds of millions of dollars into the U.S.-based Tides Foundation, a murky organization that provides cover as a legal laundering service that can funnel donations into activist groups, without revealing the source.

...

But the American anti-oilsands funding effort didn’t stop at encouraging opposition to oil pipelines. The Victoria-based Dogwood Initiative received millions of dollars from Tides Canada to run get-out-the-vote campaigns in the 2017 B.C. provincial election, including deploying a throng of campaign workers in the riding of Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver. After his election, the B.C. government would be in the hands of an NDP/Green alliance bent on fighting the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Money was also funnelled to campaign activists working to help the Liberals win the 2015 election. Vancouver-based Leadnow received directly and through the B.C.-based Sisu Institute more than $1 million from Tides Canada towards the objective of defeating then prime minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government, which supported expanding the oil and gas industry. Leadnow claims its campaigners helped defeat Conservative candidates in 25 ridings.

- https://business.fin...adas-government

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#2 rjag

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 06:59 AM

Yup Weaver is blowing a gasket on Twitter.

 

Vivianne sent him a note the other day asking to have a chat and hes blustering like crazy

 

One thing I do notice is the amount of pushback on this article from the 'progressives' of our city. They sure dont appreciate or like this being discussed 


Edited by rjag, 16 March 2019 - 07:17 AM.


#3 Mike K.

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 07:14 AM

Anti-pipeline funds flow from unexpected sources

https://www.princege...rces-1.23660942

 

...

Stand.earth, Georgia Strait Alliance, Living Oceans Society and Raincoast Conservation Foundation each received $80,000 from the NEB to participate in the recent reconsideration hearings, according to the NEB.

 

The B.C. Green Party's Andrew Weaver and Adam Olsen also received $12,000 each to participate as interveners.

 

And two environmental law groups that have been involved in various legal and regulatory challenges to pipelines have received funding from the Law Foundation of B.C. The foundation provided West Coast Environmental Law last year with $470,000 and Ecojustice with $190,000.


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#4 Mike K.

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 07:19 AM

The question now is, how does Weaver know that he won the election without the support he claims he didn't have?

 

Screen Shot 2019-03-16 at 8.18.07 AM.png


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#5 rjag

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Posted 16 March 2019 - 07:20 AM

Yup no apparent conflict or net benefit for West Coast Environmental Law to actively work to influence Municipal governments to declare climate emergencies and writing letters to oil companies and to push for a class action lawsuit

 

I'm sure they are doing it out of the goodness of their heart and they arent looking at the fact they get paid regardless of winning or losing...no sir, its all to save the planet....



#6 Casual Kev

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Posted 17 March 2019 - 10:51 PM

As much as I hate the resident anti-pipeline hippies, I have to call out the crap peddled by Krause and her Postmedia cheerleaders. This one kinda pisses me off because even my dad was parroting it the other day, so bear with me. 

 

Anyone can duplicate her so-called "research" by going to the Rockfeller's foundation website, seeing they've made contributions to the Tides Foundation, then see the latter's website and check that they claim at least partial credit for Tar Sands opposition. Yet the articles about her work make it seem like she was deep uncover after unspoken hours of work. Well, anyone can be a Krause with Google and 5-10 minutes of their spare time. Never does she try to find out the extent Tides and other charities are involved in the environmentalist movement, whether they could supersede grassroots initiatives, or even ask people involved. It would be like some progressive hack claiming the low-tax movement in Canada are just a bunch of American puppets because the Koch brothers gives money to the Fraser Institute. But hey, what can you expect from someone who takes dozens of thousands from the oil industry and unspoken more in appearance fees to... unabashedly push a pro-oil narrative? Oh geez, I wonder if this is all just projection?

 

Then the narrative that shadowy American forces want nothing short of a Tar Sands emasculation is completely nonsensical. American oil companies remain heavily invested in the Tar Sands (2/3 of oil companies were foreign-owned during peak oil prices, ffs). And, you know, that one thing a certain Texan company wants built defines politics in B.C. and Alberta. Somehow we're supposed to believe they'd rather prop up a successful anti-oil movement in their backyard and cut on a chunk of their profits, so they could maybe stand to gain on lower prices for some of their refineries - even though the cheapest Albertan oil is still more expensive than whatever comes out of Saudi Arabia or Venezuela?  And I suppose all the work these US-based charities do are all just a front to harm Alberta? Don't let obvious facts get in the way of a good conspiracy theory, I suppose.

 

And of course, the whole appeal of the conspiracy should mean the audience gives a sh*t about American companies unduly influencing Canada. If only shares for these articles didn't sit along MAGA North and American conservative media content on Facebook feeds, that'd be maybe remotely believable. The whole point is to hammer on something to discredit the anti-oil movement, that Americans are the boogeymen of the narrative is only incidental and clearly has no bearing on anything else American-related.

 

 

Progress on pipelines isn't going to be made by sinking lower than the hippies.


Edited by Casual Kev, 17 March 2019 - 10:55 PM.

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#7 Mike K.

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 07:21 AM

Then the narrative that shadowy American forces want nothing short of a Tar Sands emasculation is completely nonsensical.

 

 

They're certainly not shadowy, and if you read through Krause' documents she points to motives/mission statements that are indeed focused on containing Canadian oil.

 

I've heard from multiple individuals now that because big oil is helping fund some of the research or is involved in financial support of those who are trying to figure out the depth of foreign influence on Canada's politics and policies, that that makes the research tainted.

 

But if you swallow that logic, does that then mean that an industry under attack – and it's under savage attack from all corners, mind you – cannot defend itself, and that those who participate in its defence are instantly conspirators/crap peddlers/paid hacks?


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#8 Casual Kev

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 10:04 AM

I've heard from multiple individuals now that because big oil is helping fund some of the research or is involved in financial support of those who are trying to figure out the depth of foreign influence on Canada's politics and policies, that that makes the research tainted.

 

But if you swallow that logic, does that then mean that an industry under attack – and it's under savage attack from all corners, mind you – cannot defend itself, and that those who participate in its defence are instantly conspirators/crap peddlers/paid hacks?

 

It is quite conspiratorial to believe that a. activist organizations who primarily operate abroad are actually fronts for oil companies specifically targeting Albertan oil b. said oil companies are willing to lose their own money in Canada and increase their own political risk at home just to make the Tar Sands less competitive c. among the countless billions of dollars American companies have invested in Canada (including Albertan oil and infrastructure, let's not forget) and amid a trade war, this is how they choose to unduly influence politics. and d. there is no meaningful, legitimate grassroots opposition to Tar Sands development (which is actually the most absurd component of the conspiracy)

 

The whole theory lowers your guard with "Alberta is under attack" and "darned hippies will do anything to stop progress" narratives but it quickly sounds absurd when you give it a second thought.

 

They're certainly not shadowy, and if you read through Krause' documents she points to motives/mission statements that are indeed focused on containing Canadian oil.

 

Well yeah, they're anti-oil environmental activists. That's what they do, oppose oil projects. As I had mentioned, Krause never bothers looking into a. to what extent these organizations are actually involved in Canada b. or how much of a role they have among local environmental activists and c. whether their activities are even abnormal in the context of anti-oil activism, given they primarily operate in the US. Considering she's pushed the exact same talking points for years and has had the support of Canada's largest private media organization, you'd think she or a Postmedia figure would've been able to muster some journalistic resources to do some ground work by now considering the supposed depth and insidiousness of the conspiracy. As we all know, anti-oil activists and leaders aren't exactly hard to reach around these parts.



#9 Mike K.

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 10:12 AM

The whole theory lowers your guard with "Alberta is under attack" and "darned hippies will do anything to stop progress" narratives but it quickly sounds absurd when you give it a second thought.

 

 

Are you disputing the below excerpts from the National Post article linked above?

 

This all looks pretty legit.

 

The story begins in 2008, when a group of radical American anti-fossil-fuel NGOs created their “Tar Sands Campaign Strategy 2.1” designed explicitly “to landlock the Canadian oil sands by delaying or blocking the expansion or development of key pipelines.”

A list of key strategic targets included: “educating and organizing First Nations to challenge construction of pipelines across their traditional territories” and bringing “multiple actions in Canadian federal and provincial courts.” A “raising the negatives” section includes recruiting celebrity spokes-persons such as Leonardo Di Caprio to “lend their brand to opponents of tar sands and generating a high negative media profile for tar sands oil.”

 

But the campaigners received a bonus beyond their wildest dreams when Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed one of their most dedicated eco-warriors as his principal secretary. Prior to ascending to the most powerful post in the Prime Minister’s Office, from 2008 to 2012

Gerald Butts was president and CEO of World Wildlife Fund Canada (WWF Canada), an important Tides campaign partner. Butts would use his new powerful position to bring other former campaigners with him:

- Marlo Raynolds‏,
chief of staff to Environment Minister Catherine McKenna, is past executive director of the Tides-backed Pembina Institute.

Zoë Caron, chief of staff to Natural Resource Minister Amarjeet Sohi, is also a former WWF Canada official.

Sarah Goodman, on the prime minister’s staff, is a former vice-president of Tides Canada.

With these anti-oil activists at the epicentre of federal power, it’s no wonder the oil industry, and hundreds of thousands of workers, have plummeted into political and policy purgatory.

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#10 Casual Kev

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 01:47 PM

Are you disputing the below excerpts from the National Post article linked above?

 

This all looks pretty legit.

Are you going to dispute anything I wrote? Again, I've already said that Canadian anti-oil activists opposing oil development in Canada is about par for the course, but the claims they're being directed by foreign charities who are in turn directed by American oil companies are tenuous at best and laughable at worst. Is the 4D chess play now that WWF Canada is an American puppet and every other, much larger WWF branches are just paper tigers to mask the sabotage of the Tar Sands?



#11 Mike K.

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Posted 18 March 2019 - 03:03 PM

Well, if you follow the money, it would certainly appear as though foreign funding has been a significant enabler of Canadian anti-oil efforts.

The issue is not whether US oil interests lost out on Canadian investments, it’s how American money is literally affecting/impacting Canadian elections.
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#12 AllseeingEye

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 02:21 PM

It will be interesting to see how and/or if the revamped beefed up omnibus bill C-76 has any effect with respect to tightening up the Canadian electoral process and limiting foreign influence(s); in is interesting to note a 2018 Abacus Data survey of Canadians showed among those polled the US was viewed as being as likely (or even more so) than China or Russia to get involved with the electoral process in this country.

 

Whether C-76 assists in mitigating such foreign influences as may be at play, remains ultimately to be seen...

 

The bigger issue it seems to me is the wild west show we all know and love, i.e. social media; Facebook in particular has had a rough couple of years and as it stands is a platform full of potential exploits by such foreign agents or actors that may wish to take advantage of the medium. 



#13 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 02:46 PM

The bigger issue it seems to me is the wild west show we all know and love, i.e. social media; Facebook in particular has had a rough couple of years and as it stands is a platform full of potential exploits by such foreign agents or actors that may wish to take advantage of the medium. 

 

are targeted ads "exploitation" though?

 

it's just another place to put ads for people to see like tv or radio or newspapers. 



#14 AllseeingEye

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:56 PM

are targeted ads "exploitation" though?

 

it's just another place to put ads for people to see like tv or radio or newspapers. 

Not necessarily; that said social media platforms notably FB are used more broadly to slander parties and/or politicians, including several pro-Russian sites which repeatedly went after Christa Freeland for example, accusing her Ukrainian grandfather of working for the Nazis. Freeland you may recall was banned from Russia in 2014 after Canada - with Freeland "on point" - quite vocally criticized Moscow for its Crimean intervention.

 

Partially to its credit Facebook - recognizing the potential for online abuse - in 2017 released a Canadian election integrity plan which included among other things a "cyber hygiene guide" for MP's outlining precautionary measures such as two factor authentication among other items:

 

http://facebookcanad...-hygiene-en.pdf

 

More recently Facebook unveiled a series of measures this month in a bid to prevent its platform being used to disrupt the next federal election and to conform with changes to Canada's election law, i.e. bill C-76.

 

The company is currently building an archive of Canadian political advertising that will allow members of the public to view ads that are being placed by candidates, political parties and by groups wading in on issues being debated during the campaign. The archive, which will be similar to ones the company has already set up in countries such as the U.S. and the U.K. and searchable for seven years, will include copies of ads, how much was spent and general demographic data about who the ad reached such as average ages, gender and location.

 

This 'ad library' is expected to be available by June, ahead of the fall election. That all said Facebook's decision to introduce a series of measures to comply with changes to Canada's election law is in sharp contrast with Google's response to the changes in our election laws: Google outright said it won't accept any political advertising during the election campaign because it would be "too difficult" to comply with the law. Hmmm.....


Edited by AllseeingEye, 23 March 2019 - 03:56 PM.

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#15 Rob Randall

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 03:57 PM

are targeted ads "exploitation" though?

 

it's just another place to put ads for people to see like tv or radio or newspapers. 

 

 

I take it you're not a news person. What happened is that some of those targeted ads were placed by bad guys (and bad countries) and the ads were deceptive regarding who placed them and who paid for them.


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#16 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 23 March 2019 - 04:04 PM

I take it you're not a news person. What happened is that some of those targeted ads were placed by bad guys (and bad countries) and the ads were deceptive regarding who placed them and who paid for them.

 

i'm not really and i don't understand it all that well. but if they are just banner or in-stream ads ads i think they are given too much credit for making people vote a certain way. or should i say influencing. it's not as if they are or can be placed in such a way that every time you look at your facebook you have to watch a 60-second video ad first about xyz party or policies.


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 23 March 2019 - 04:04 PM.


#17 Casual Kev

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Posted 24 March 2019 - 03:39 PM

Well, if you follow the money, it would certainly appear as though foreign funding has been a significant enabler of Canadian anti-oil efforts.

The issue is not whether US oil interests lost out on Canadian investments, it’s how American money is literally affecting/impacting Canadian elections.

 

Again, what is completely ignored is the magnitude of the money and how it actually makes an impact. The UCP is literally claiming the Rockfellers are at the forefront of ruining the Tar Sands via the Tides Foundation when the vast majority of the millions they've given Tides are... towards American projects (https://www.rbf.org/...ides-foundation). There's literally one $20,000 grant towards a Canadian project, whose primarily business is pushing forestry sustainability standards and certifications. Wow, 10 minutes of Googling led to me "following the money" more than Krause ever has. I wonder if it's because actually doing a little extra due diligence doesn't support the bizarre conspiracy theory? 

 

Meanwhile, Kenney announces a $30,000,000 "war room" PR effort on behalf of oil companies once he's elected... right next to the terminal of the Texan pipeline... (https://www.cbc.ca/n...a-oil-1.5067861)... and of course, he's not once called out foreign ownership in the Tar Sands, only the supposedly foreign opposition to it. It's not even remotely about foreign influence.



#18 Victoria Watcher

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Posted 24 March 2019 - 04:01 PM

Meanwhile, Kenney announces a $30,000,000 "war room" PR effort on behalf of oil companies once he's elected... right next to the terminal of the Texan pipeline... (https://www.cbc.ca/n...a-oil-1.5067861)... and of course, he's not once called out foreign ownership in the Tar Sands, only the supposedly foreign opposition to it. It's not even remotely about foreign influence.

 

foreign investment is GOOD.  that's good for countries and for people and economies. not bad.

 

canadian companies do lots of it.

 

Foreign investors spent $259.6 billion to acquire, launch, and expand businesses in the United States in 2017, according to numbers released Wednesday by the US Bureau of Economic Analysis. That's down from an historic high of $439.5 billion in 2015.

 

The largest chunk of last year's foreign direct investment came from Canada ($66.2 billion), followed by the United Kingdom and Japan.

 

 

https://money.cnn.co...2017/index.html


Edited by Victoria Watcher, 24 March 2019 - 04:05 PM.


#19 Mike K.

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Posted 24 March 2019 - 04:13 PM

Indeed.

What’s not good is foreign meddling in Canadian politics.

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