Canada is sticking marbles up Kim Jung-un's butt

In a "man-bites-dog" story that news editors and bloggers love, North Korea and Iran attacked Canada’s human rights record at UN forum. A few thoughts:

1) North Korea and Iran are correct! Canada does have problems and it may have some legitimate human rights abuses. Even some "First Nation" people in Canada went to Geneva to complain about Canada's human rights record.

North Korea and Iran making that point is similar to the Soviet Union attacking America in the past about the treatment of black Americans. It was the moral equivalency game--"Oh, sure, we keep 98 percent of our population enslaved to the state. But look at what you are doing to 12 percent of your population."

So, yes, North Korea and Iran are correct. But it brings to mind something Jesse Jackson used to say: "Content without context is pretext."

Meaning, information without context doesn't tell us very much. Or as economists like to ask: "Compared to what?"

If you say that Canada has a lousy human rights record, well, compared to what? Compared to North Korea? Iran? Compared to what Geneva says it should be?

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By the way, it was a good thing that the Soviets made that claim, that is probably the only real contribution those Commie bastards make to humanity.

2) Yes, I know that some idiot may quote me as saying North Korea and Iran are correct without the context.

To be clear, I regard the point from North Korea and Iran with the same level of seriousness as I regard a professional conspiracy theorist. They may make a good point occasionally and may even connect the dots about something evil a government is doing or has done. But then, as soon as they finish saying something that makes sense, they will next tell you that the government is sticking iPods up their butts.

Chang Ha-Joon
3) North Korea and Iran are also playing the Chang Ha-Joon foolish consistency game. Things are either true 100 percent of the time or they are not true. That's one of the games Chang played in his wildly popular book "23 Things They Don't Tell You About Capitalism."

After all: Who can say that Canada has no human rights abuses? Governments do all kinds of evil things. Even some people from Canada are denouncing the country's human rights record. That means, according to North Korea and Iran, that Canada has human rights abuses.

A child who steals a candy bar and a terrorist who kills innocent people are both criminals, using Chang's "all-or-nothing" reasoning.

What happens to North Koreans in North Korea who denounce the country's human rights record? That's what hard labor, gulags and public executions are for! Destroy those people and North Korea no longer has a human rights problem.

In Canada? First Nation people get welfare and government support. If they play this human rights issue well, they may even get their airfare and other expenses paid for by the Canadian government (if they aren't already doing so) to travel to Geneva to complain about Canada's human rights record.

If I were in charge of propaganda in North Korea or Iran, I would invite a First Nation chief from Canada to tour the country, giving speeches about Canada's awful human rights record.

And then there is the final question: How many North Koreans would move to Canada and how many Canadians would go to North Korea if they did an Unsatisfied Citizen Exchange Program?


Grand Chief David Harper

From the National Post article:

“Canada has not been listening to civil society, labour and indigenous voices in Canada,” said Meera Karunananthan, a Council of Canadians campaigner who was in Geneva this week, along with others, challenging Canada’s human rights record.

Grand Chief David Harper of the Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimaka, who also travelled to Geneva, said “1,880 First Nation homes in Canada do not have clean running water.”

Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, said there is concern among civil society groups about Canada’s ability to implement the UN recommendations.