April 1, 2017 - No. 11

47th Anniversary of the Founding of the
Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist)

Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada
Inaugurates National Office in Ottawa

Reception to inaugurate the National Office of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada on the
occasion of the 47th anniversary of the Party's founding, Ottawa, March 31, 2017.
The function was addressed by MLPC National Leader Anna Di Carlo (centre)
as well as other members of the Party executive.

The Federal Budget

Palestinian Land Day
Long Live the Palestinian People and Their Resistance!
All Out to End the Occupation!

Occupation Holds More Than 85 Per Cent of Historic Palestine

47th Anniversary of the Founding of the
Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist)

Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada Inaugurates
National Office in Ottawa

The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) sends revolutionary greetings to all Party members, supporters, friends and the working people as we celebrate the 47th anniversary of the Party's founding. Without their support and confidence we would not be here today.

Anna Di Carlo, MLPC National Leader; and
Louis Lang, representing the Ottawa-Gatineau
Party organization.

Today in Ottawa, we are holding a reception to officially open the Party's new National Office. We congratulate the Ottawa-Gatineau Branch of CPC(M-L) and Youth for Democratic Renewal for their work to prepare and operate the National Office on a professional basis. We salute also the cadre across the country who are being trained to carry out the work of the Office on a planned and professional basis. We reserve special thanks to the comrades and friends who answered the call of the Party to assist this project by raising funds. Half the projected amount of $40,000 for this year has been achieved, which is great news. We call on everyone not to let up on mobilizing support for this most important work of the Party.

We are also pleased to inform you that, besides the work for democratic renewal and a modern constitution, the National Office is also overseeing membership campaigns and communications with members and the public. A great beginning is reflected in the issuing of membership cards for several hundred new members for 2017 and the renewal of the cards of current members. Everyone will receive their cards within the next month. This is particularly important as the Party involves members and supporters in the preparations for its 9th Congress.

Modern Conception of Rights

This year we mark Canada's 150th anniversary as well as celebrate the 180th anniversary of the Rebellions in Upper and Lower Canada. The 1837-38 Rebellions led to the establishment of what was called responsible government in Canada. The country's present institutions and conception of rights were established at that time. Of great significance to grasp about those institutions is that sovereignty was not vested by the people in themselves. Far from it, through a series of Royal Proclamations sovereignty was vested in the police powers of a foreign monarch and private interests. Those arrangements remain a block to building a modern and independent Canada to this day.

The celebration of Canadian Confederation is taking place at a time the country has become integrated into the U.S. economy and war machine. Under the leadership of the U.S. imperialists, the Canadian military is engaged in acts of aggression and occupation of other countries without the consent of Canadians and in large measure in opposition to the people's desire for an anti-war government and to make Canada a zone for peace.

Even though large amounts of money are being spent on celebrations of Canada 150, the discussion and elaboration of two topics are strictly prohibited: Canadian history and the Canadian Constitution! This is justified in the name of maintaining unity. In reality, the prohibition is to create a mindless atmosphere to undermine the political movements of the people in defence of their rights and deprive them of the outlook they need to build the New. Facing this situation, history calls upon the working people themselves to step forward to provide Canada with an aim that upholds the rights of all and secures a bright future for the coming generations.

Canada 150 cannot be separated from the current most furious reactionary assault under the banner that there is no alternative to war and repression. This outlook is fundamentally anti-worker, racist, misogynist, warmongering and morbidly defeatist. The disinformed outlook blocks the striving of the working people, youth and older generation to build the New. It opposes the unity of the peoples of all lands on an organized basis and claims no alternative exists to war and class privilege. It seeks to block any renewal of society that would open a path to progress in defence of the rights of all and to affirm national sovereignty of the peoples everywhere. This includes here at home Quebec's right to self-determination and the hereditary rights of the Indigenous peoples, as well as citizenship rights on a modern basis within a modern constitution.

The celebrations of the 150th anniversary of Confederation underscore the importance for Canadians to discuss the conception of rights enshrined in the Constitution by the British North America Act, 1867 and especially its amended form with the addition of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1982.

At this time, in the name of strength in diversity, the rights of all are negated by dividing the people into categories of national origin, ethnicity, gender, religion, wealth and ability. This is done to weaken the organized conscious collective defence of rights by virtue of being human and the striving of the working class and people to humanize the natural and social environment.

The working people are seeing that the security and peace of mind of their families during their working lives and in retirement are out of their control. Wealth and power are being concentrated ever more rapidly and shamelessly in the hands of fewer and fewer people. Governments of police powers not governments of laws have become commonplace. Far from enacting needed reforms to the electoral law so that all medieval vestiges of privilege are removed from the political process and Canadians can exercise control over elected political representatives and hold them to account, the opposite is occurring.

Increasingly, workers and youth are looking at how to understand the present historical juncture and what theory and actions are required to turn things around in their favour. Profound concern has been expressed with the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States and the manner in which the government of Canada is kowtowing to every arbitrary measure the U.S. administration takes in the name of security and prosperity by stepping up the use of police powers.

The working people see the alarming deterioration of the conditions of life and work in Canada, the U.S., Mexico and countries where Canada is intervening militarily to enforce regime change on behalf of U.S. imperialism's striving for global hegemony. While the rich get richer and the poor poorer, the dangers of war and to the social and natural environments increase. Under these circumstances, strengthening the Party's capacity to respond to the need to involve workers and youth in Party work, increase its national profile, as well as broaden the Party's technical base are all urgently required. These issues are being addressed through the preparations for the Party's 9th Congress and to build the institutions and innovate a political process required to build a modern Canada.

In this regard, we are pleased to announce that the Marxist-Leninist Party of Quebec (PMLQ) is hosting a Conference in Montreal on May 7, to discuss the conception of rights in Canada's old constitution and a modern conception needed in a new one. The Conference aims to mobilize workers and youth to shed light on the origin of the police powers being unleashed today against them, and how the people can respond to defend their rights and build the New. Similar conferences will also be organized locally across the country.

Historic Need to Build the New

This year, we will hold celebrations under the theme The Birth of the New to strengthen the work to open society's path to progress in today's conditions. The celebrations will emphasize the significance of the role of the Communist Party in making sure the working class leads the masses of the people to bring about the social transformations so needed at this time.

The Party also calls on all its members and friends to join us in discussing the Party's thesis on the Necessity for Change on the historic occasion of the 50th anniversary of its adoption in 1967. The Necessity for Change analysis provides the outlook guiding the Party's work. We also join the communist parties and peoples all over the world in celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution in 1917.

To mark these occasions, an important Conference to be held in Ottawa on August 12 under the theme The Birth of the New to which everyone is invited. The Conference will be followed by a Concert and Reception as well as the annual Dawn Ceremony at the Party Memorial in Beechwood Cemetery on August 13. These are dedicated to the Party's founder and leader Comrade Hardial Bains on the 20th anniversary of his death, and to all the Party comrades who have passed away and whose contributions to building the New in this country we treasure. On this occasion we will also pay tribute to Comrade Fidel Castro and the significance of his life and work, as well as the lives of all those who have contributed internationally to our common cause of peace, freedom and democracy.

On this day of celebration of CPC(M-L)'s 47th anniversary, we pay our founder and leader Hardial Bains and other comrades who have passed away our deepest respects and dedicate our work to their memory. We wish all the organizations of the Party at every level success in their work!

Together, Let Us March On for a Modern Canada that Upholds the Rights of All!
All Out to Build the New! Long Live CPC(M-L)!

Central Committee, Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist)
March 31, 2017


For information on the project of CPC(M-L) to build the National Office and participate in this work, contact office@cpcml.ca.

To donate funds to help this project by mail, send cheque or money order payable to: MLPC. Send to: P.O. Box 666, Postal Station C, Montreal, Quebec H2L 4L5 or donate through Paypal at cpcml.ca/contact-join.

Please include full name and address for contributions over $20, as required by electoral law. The MLPC will issue a receipt for tax purposes which enables the donor to receive a tax credit. The maximum contribution to a registered political party permitted by law in 2017 is $1,550.00.

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The Federal Budget

The annual federal budget usually makes minor adjustments in how it claims new value from what the working class produces in the socialized economy and how it spends the amount it claims. The party in power tables a budget that mostly goes unchallenged in practice because the ruling party exercises its dictatorship mandate within the cartel of official political parties that control Parliament.

Circumstances that dictate significant budgetary changes occur during crises such as the Second World War. The 2017 budget of the current Liberal Party in power is essentially a repeat of its 2016 budget. Some tax measures have changed slightly such as the elimination of transit user fees as a taxable deduction and an increase in the excise tax on alcohol and cigarettes but mostly everything remains pat.

The 2017 budget projects net new spending over the next six years to total only $4.4 billion on an annual budget of $303 billion. The annual socialized economy (GDP) is estimated at $2.1 trillion and growing roughly two per cent annually, mostly from several hundred thousand new workers entering the workforce every year and producing additional value.

The graph (Figure 3) prepared by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) indicates how spending as a percentage of the socialized economy has fluctuated since 1931. Of note is the large jump during WWII and the gradual decrease in the per cent with the onset of the anti-social offensive in the 1980s.

Please note that all quotations are from the CCPA Alternative Federal Budget for 2017, which can be found here.

"Federal expenditures as a share of the economy are close to all-time lows, as shown in Figure 3. Under the federal government's plan they will hit a new record low of 14 per cent by 2019. To put that number in perspective, by the time Canadians go to the polls again government spending will be lower than at any time since 1939, despite federal responsibilities -- for old age security and universal health care, to name just two examples -- being much larger than they were then. One of the reasons the federal government has had a limited impact on economic and job growth is that it is simply too small, by historical standards, for the task."

That being said, the federal budget plays a large role for the ruling elite who control the economy and politics of the country. The budget represents the pooling of new value workers produce to sustain the state, which is the main bulwark to maintain class privilege and the current relations of production where workers sell their capacity to work to those who own and control the socialized forces of production. The social class in control of the forces of production and state controls the added-value available for distribution and investment. The current state blocks the working class from bringing into being a new pro-social direction for the economy and democratic renewal of the political system.

The federal budget has its main preoccupations, itemized in the following four broad categories (these categories often overlap)

1. Security of the state and the current relations of production through police powers: military, political police and spies, domestic police, judicial system, prisons etc. The budget provides the military alone with $19.3 billion for annual expenditures and a non-budgeted $40 billion for near-term procurement mainly for U.S.-made fighter jets and Canadian-produced naval ships.

2. Government and bureaucracy and what is often referred to as civil society. This includes funding for Parliament, the cartel political parties, government departments, the functioning of labour and commercial law etc., and a vast array of non-governmental organizations.

3. State money directly provided to private corporate interests in pay-the-rich schemes. In the 2016 budget the buzz word for these schemes was "infrastructure," while in this budget the repeated theme is "innovation." "Innovation" or a derivative word appears over 350 times in the 2017 budget. The means and agencies to pay the rich are extensive at all levels of government.

4. Social programs and public services. These have several purposes: to reproduce the working class and its capacity to work, to provide private and state enterprises in the socialized economy with the services necessary to operate, and to provide and reinforce the ideological and cultural dominance of the financial oligarchy throughout society.

The working class can influence category 4 through class struggle to force the state to increase investments in social programs and public services that benefit the working people and improve their living and working conditions.

The working class is charged with the responsibility to introduce its own ideology and politics into society through its own institutions that it builds and maintains independently of the ruling elite and state.

The working class through the state's social programs and public services can increase its claim on the new value workers produce called social reproduced-value. This combines with individual reproduced-value, which includes wages and benefits while working, to enhance workers' overall claim on the new value they produce.

Reproduced-value exists in a constant battle with added-value claimed by those who own and control the socialized economy. This class struggle is over the new value workers produce. New value is divided into the claim of the working class, the reproduced-value, which reproduces workers and maintains their living conditions throughout life, and the claim of those who own and control the socialized economy, the added-value, which becomes equity and interest profit, and claims of the state, mainly through taxation, to maintain the unproductive institutions of the state such as the police powers, government, and much of the state bureaucracy.

The ruling elite need a constant oversupply of an educated and healthy working class for its labour market. The working class sells its capacity to work to those who own and control the socialized economy in exchange for the reproduced-value within the new value workers produce. The working class expects the exchange for reproduced-value to last a lifetime from birth to passing away including any periods of unemployment for whatever reason. The exchange must include guarantees of standard living and working conditions throughout workers' lives if equilibrium is to exist in the relations of production.

The state-organized anti-social offensive of the oligopolies and financial oligarchy to drive down reproduced-value and increase added-value has disrupted equilibrium in social class relations of production. This presents a challenge for the working class to defend itself in the present and prepare itself subjectively for a radical transformation of the social class relations of production with a new direction for the economy and democratic renewal of politics to defend the rights of all and the general interests of society.

For a radical change in relations of production to occur, the working class must unite and organize its forces to deprive the financial oligarchy of its power to deprive the working class of its right to defend itself, and its right to bring the relations of production into conformity with the socialized forces of production and open a path forward for society to emancipate the working class and all humanity.

Aim and Outlook of the Two Main Social Classes

The class struggle is centred on which social class should control the socialized economy and the politics of the country. The aim and outlook of the working class reflect the socialized nature of their work in the modern interrelated economy and the necessity for cooperation to ensure it operates within a nation-building project without crises and war, and where the new value workers produce becomes the material basis to guarantee the rights and well-being of all.

The aim and outlook of the financial oligarchy is self-serving competition to make the socialized economy and working class serve their private interests and class privilege wherein they seize the new value workers produce for their own narrow interests of empire-building within the U.S.-led imperialist system of states. The aim and outlook of the rich oligarchs are in contradiction with the socialized nature of the modern economy that requires cooperation from all its interrelated sectors to operate without crises and war.

The aim and outlook of the working class centre on the necessity for its emancipation from class oppression. To emancipate itself from social class oppression and gain control over its work and life, the working class must emancipate all humanity from class privilege and exploitation, and move society forward towards the complete elimination of social classes.

The Federal Budget in the Context of the Battle of the Working People for Control Over Those Affairs that Affect Them

The working people are faced with an economic and political system that deprives them of the right to control their working and living conditions and solve economic and social problems. Problems in the basic sectors of the socialized economy cannot be solved without empowerment of those who work in those sectors. The recurring crises in the steel industry, forestry, manufacturing in general and every other sector are evidence of the necessity for the working people to organize to assume control over their work and lives. The control of the working people must extend to where investments are made from the new value workers produce. Control of the working people over the new value they produce is needed so that social responsibility for the human and natural environment and the general interests of society are a priority.

Control of the working people over the socialized economy is necessary to deprive the financial oligarchy from abusing the new value workers produce in self-serving and destructive competition for empire-building and war. The control of the financial oligarchy exists in opposition to the people's desire for nation-building, democracy and peace, and cooperation in the socialized economy amongst its interrelated parts, which the economy requires to function without crises.

Aim and Outlook Are Key to Solving Problems

Control exercised by working people is necessary so that a new aim to solve problems is put in charge of the economy. The following problems enumerated by the CCPA in their alternative federal budget cannot be solved unless the aim is to solve each specific problem.

The financial oligarchy in control puts the aim of making private profit in control of solving problems. This prohibits ever solving the problem because the aim to solve the problem is missing and replaced with the aim of making private profit. All the problems the CCPA itemizes in its alternate budget must have a specific aim to solve the problem that precludes another aim.

For example, the aim in education has to be to guarantee the right to education for all. The private aim to profit from providing education will never fulfil the right to education because that is not the aim. The same is with the right to health care, seniors' care, housing, food, retirement security and all other modern rights that people have by virtue of being human.

The CCPA writes:

"The average house price in Canada is closing in on half a million dollars -- double that if you live in Vancouver. A loaf of factory bread will put you out nearly $5 if you live in Nunavut. The cost of enlisting your two-year-old in child care in Toronto now tops $16,000 a year. More than 4.5 million Canadians lived below the poverty line in 2014, 991,000 of them children. Poverty rates are higher for women, racialized people, and immigrants, and they skyrocket for people living with disabilities, single mothers, and Aboriginal people. More than half of all First Nation children live in poverty.

"One in eight Canadians regularly experience food insecurity and more than 800,000 people visit a food bank each month. Nearly 100 First Nation communities continue to go without clean drinking water. More than a third of Inuit households live in overcrowded or unsafe housing. And 3.5 million Canadians lack basic drug coverage, leading many to simply go without important prescription medication.

"Canada is on track to miss its greenhouse gas emissions target by a mile, leaving future generations to foot the bill of climate change. Canadian household debt exceeded the size of our economy (GDP) for the first time last year. The average Canadian owes $21,348 in consumer debt (not including mortgage debt). Canada's farmers are now carrying over $92 billion in total debt. Public student debt in Canada had reached $28 billion at last count.

"On the other side of the divide, the two richest Canadians hold the same amount of wealth as the poorest 30 per cent of the population. The 100 highest-earning CEOs in Canada took home an average of $9.5 million each in 2015. And our tax system consistently provides greater benefits to high-income earners. For example, over 90 per cent of the benefit of the capital gains tax break goes to the top 10 per cent of income earners; 87 per cent of the benefit goes to the top 1 per cent. Over 10 years, federal corporate tax rates have been cut by nearly 50 per cent, while those same corporations amassed over $500 billion in excess cash."

Childcare Crisis

The childcare crisis across Canada is well documented. Childcare should form part of the public education system under the principle that quality education is a right for all from birth to passing away. Pre-elementary education and care for children from as soon as possible after birth should be integrated into the public education system expanding the infrastructure and educational personnel to accommodate this right to education for all.

Control of the Working People Is Necessary to Bring Into Being an
Anti-War Government and Make Canada a Zone for Peace

The defence budget must be linked with the aim to create an anti-war government and make Canada a zone for peace. Such an aim demands bringing to an end purchases of military equipment from private contractors within the imperialist system of states and a halt to profiting from war and repression through military exports such as the Trudeau government's disastrous export of armaments to the mediaeval regime in Saudi Arabia even while that country is participating in U.S.-led predatory wars against its neighbours and a repressive war against its own people.

Canada should leave NATO and NORAD and cancel all military participation within the imperialist system of states. All peacekeeping commitments within the UN are suspect, as the organization is now dominated by the big powers and their imperialist interests. All Canadian troops should be brought home. No joint training with other countries should occur at this time and no foreign troops or police officers should be allowed in the country and no foreign armaments such as missiles should be stationed in Canada.

Military spending in Budget 2017 remains mostly the same ($19.3 billion) with a proviso that a defence study may introduce new spending at any time. Also, near-term military procurements outside the general budget are estimated at $40 billion with a longer forecast of $83 billion.

The following warmongering statement appears in the Trudeau 2017 Budget in preparation for war against Russia and to exercise U.S.-led military control over the peoples of Eastern Europe:

"As a leading member of NATO, Canada has always deployed our troops and equipment when and where they are needed most. In July 2016, the Prime Minister announced Canada would lead a robust multinational NATO battlegroup in Latvia as part of the Alliance's enhanced Forward Presence in Eastern Europe -- Canada's largest sustained military presence in Europe in more than a decade -- at a cost of $348.6 million over three years. In addition, Canada has renewed Operation UNIFIER, its support for Ukraine's efforts to maintain sovereignty, security and stability, at a cost of $29 million per year for two years."

Employment Insurance

In Canada today, 20 per cent of jobs are part time and roughly 14 per cent are contract or seasonal. This makes qualifying for employment insurance almost impossible for many workers. The EI benefit rate is low -- just 55 per cent of earnings averaged over the previous six months. Other problems exist that have been well documented. (See Workers' Forum, March 9, 2017.)

To solve the scourge of unemployment, the aim must be to abolish the outmoded labour market and make unemployment an unacceptable concept and practice just as slavery and the slave market have entered humanity's social consciousness as unacceptable and repugnant.

Working people before retirement should be working, in school or under some form of social care. The state has the social responsibility to find suitable work for workers within their living area or provide them with additional education and cultural activities and a standard income if those who control the productive forces do not make work available. Within a nation-building project, every region in Canada should strive to have an all-sided economic base that is not seasonal or heavily dependent on one sector. This striving of course requires the control of the working people over their lives and socialized economy.

With the human factor/social consciousness in control of society, the modern socialized economy of industrial mass production is more than capable of guaranteeing work, education and culture for all, and that the people's rights and well-being are assured throughout their lives without exception.

Stop Paying the Rich

Pay-the-rich schemes exist throughout the economy. In this selection, the CCPA itemizes a few in the energy sector.

"The Accelerated Capital Cost Allowance (ACCA) provided to liquefied natural gas projects ($9 million per year); Flow-through share deductions available to investors in coal, oil, and gas projects ($133 million per year); Exploration limited partnerships (amount unknown); Canadian Exploration Expenses (CEE) for coal mining ($148 million a year); Canadian Development Expenses (CDE) for oil and gas well or mining development ($1.018 billion per year); Canadian oil and gas property expenses (COPGE), which allow companies to claim 10 per cent of the costs of acquiring oil and gas wells and rights ($36 million a year); Duty exemptions for imports of mobile offshore drilling units in the Atlantic and Arctic; and The Foreign Resource Expense (FRE) and Foreign Exploration and Development Expense (FEDE)."

Rights of Indigenous Peoples

CCPA highlights some pressing problems facing Indigenous peoples whose rights must be guaranteed in Canada's basic constitution and enforced in practice:

"Over 10,000 First Nations high school graduates can't access post-secondary education and children receive inferior education because of a long-standing funding cap. First Nations child and family services are not up to provincial standards because they don't receive adequate funding. Inferior housing, unsafe drinking water, and poor infrastructure are forcing First Nations people out of their own communities. Fifty-eight Indigenous languages are threatened with extinction."

Rights of Women

CCPA writes:

"Women make up 47 per cent of the paid workforce in Canada; [they] are more likely to have post-secondary training, and earn on average 30 per cent less than men. Women perform more hours of unpaid work in the home and work more total hours (paid and unpaid) than men, make up 92 per cent of those taking parental leave, and are 21 times more likely than men to cite caring for children as the reason they are in part-time work. Women are now more likely than men to be a victim of a violent crime. Spousal violence and sexual assault costs the economy an estimated $12.2 billion per year. The federal government spends about 1.6 per cent of this amount ($189 million) to counter violence against women.

"Employment rates for women lag behind those for men. Nearly a million women working part time do so involuntarily, reporting a lack of full-time work and the need to care for children and their family as the reason."

Health Care Is a Right

The aim of private health care is not to guarantee the right of Canadians to health care but to make money for private interests. CCPA writes, "In Canada only 71 per cent of health expenditures are financed under the public system. Conversely, the private health sector in Canada has now grown to nearly a third (29 per cent) of total health expenditures."

To guarantee the right to health care, the aim must be affirmed through a universal comprehensive free public health care system for all parts of the body without exclusion including mental health. A universal health care system must be established within the public education sector to guarantee a healthy lifestyle and preventive health care for all children. Health care providers should also be present in all workplaces charged with ensuring the health and safety of workers.

A public health care system with an aim to guarantee the right to health care must include the public production of pharmaceuticals, hospital supplies and all manner of health care infrastructure including whatever is deemed necessary to care for Canada's seniors. To sustain public health care and uphold its aim, the financing, building, maintenance and delivery of health care must be entirely public without any contamination from the aim of private profit.

All enterprises within the socialized economy employing workers must realize the health care value embedded within the workforce and the social reproduced-value workers regularly reproduce within those enterprises, which should be returned in proper exchange to the health care system for its extended reproduction.

Right to Housing

Again, to be successful the aim has to be to guarantee the right to housing and not some other aim such as private profit for the construction and financing of such projects.


The financing, building and maintaining of infrastructure must be entirely public without the aim of private profit. This must include all manner of public design, engineering and construction, otherwise the building of infrastructure soon degenerates into pay-the-rich schemes as they now mostly are. Infrastructure, including mass transit, roads, and bridges etc, forms part of the country's means of production and is not an article of consumption for individuals to realize through user fees. The realization of infrastructure value must be calculated and paid according to the value accruing to private and state enterprises active in the socialized economy.

Post-Secondary Education (PSE)

Post-secondary education forms part of the right to quality education for all.

CCPA writes:

"Canadian colleges and universities have doubled or tripled tuition fee revenues since 2001, saddling graduates with unprecedented levels of debt (see Figure 14). The catalyst came in 1996, when the Chrétien government made historic cuts to federal PSE transfers worth $2.29 billion (an 18 per cent reduction), which facilitated dramatic tuition increases over the next two decades.

"Tuition revenue going to colleges and universities has tripled since the massive cuts to federal spending in 1996. Public student debt in Canada reached $28 billion in 2012 (its highest level ever), which does not account for private debt. Despite Canada's treaty obligations, over 10,000 Indigenous students are on a waiting list for post-secondary training. Public spending on training and skilled trades apprenticeships in Canada sits at the bottom of the industrialized world."

Living Conditions of Vulnerable Canadians

CCPA writes:

"An estimated 863,492 individuals relied on food banks across Canada in March 2016, 28 per cent more people than before the recession hit in 2008. Food insecurity has risen dramatically since 2008 as well, with 12.5 per cent of people in Canada experiencing some level of food insecurity in 2013.

"Homelessness remains at crisis levels. Nearly one in five Canadian households experience severe housing affordability problems, about 35,000 Canadians are homeless on any given night, and over 235,000 distinct individuals experience some form of homelessness during the year attributed to the withdrawal of the federal government's investment in affordable housing and pan-Canadian cuts to welfare beginning in the 1980s.

"By any measure, there was a rise in poverty rates in Canada immediately following the onset of the 2008 recession. The national poverty rate in 2014 (the last year for which we have data) was 13 per cent, based on the [Low Income Measure (LIM)], while it was 11.3 per cent using the [Market basket Measure (MBM)]. That translates to between 3.9 and 4.5 million Canadians living in poverty.

"According to the latest national Child Poverty Report Card, more than 1.3 million children (18.5 per cent) lived in poverty in 2014, up from 15.8 per cent in 1989, the year the House of Commons passed its ill-fated resolution seeking to end child poverty by the year 2000. A higher child poverty rate was accompanied by a greater proportion of poor families with children that had at least one parent working full time, all year (37 per cent in 2011, compared to 33 per cent in 1989).

"The situation is much worse for Indigenous children. The poverty rate for status First Nations children, for example, is a staggering 51 per cent, rising to 60 per cent if restricted to children on reserves. Poverty rates are also higher for recent immigrants, Indigenous people generally, racialized people, senior women, single parents, and people with disabilities. We will have to wait until 2018 for up-to-date census information on the experience of poverty by ethnicity or immigration status. Based on the 2011 National Household Survey, however, and using the LIM-[After Tax (AT)] as our measure of poverty, the following incidence of poverty emerges:

"Immigrants: 18.3 per cent (versus non-immigrants: 13.6 per cent); Non-permanent residents: 38.1 per cent; Visible minority: 21.5 per cent (versus non-visible minority: 13.3 per cent); Aboriginal identity: 25.3 per cent (versus non-Aboriginal identity: 14.5 per cent); Men: 11.9 per cent (versus women: 13.3 per cent); Men over 65: 9.1 per cent (versus women over 65: 14.4 per cent); Lone-parent families: 34 per cent (versus two-parent families with two earners: 5.1 per cent; and two-parent families with one earner: 22.0 per cent); Adults with disabilities have rates 10 per cent higher than those without."

Security of Seniors

CCPA writes:

"Only 38 per cent of workers belonged to a pension plan in 2015, down from 46 per cent in 1977. In other words, 11.7 million working Canadians had no workplace pension plan. Just one in four private sector workers has a pension plan. In 2004, 71 per cent of private sector pension plan holders had a defined benefit plan, the most dependable kind; in 2015, only 45 per cent of pension holders were so lucky. Seniors' poverty rates tripled between 1995 and 2014, from 3.9 per cent to 12.5 per cent."

The attack on defined-benefit pensions both public and private reveal a sinister aim to destroy this hard fought for social program. The Trudeau government has jumped on the anti-pension bandwagon with its shameless introduction of Bill C-27: An Act to amend the Pension Benefits Standards Act. The measure is an open assault on federally regulated defined-benefit pensions. The working class strongly opposes this attack on their rights and has raised the fighting slogan: Defend the pensions we have, fight for pensions for all!

The pension situation is a national disgrace. The working class must retire in dignity at a Canadian standard of living. The exchange of workers' capacity to work with those who own and control the forces of production is for a lifetime not just while capable of working. That is the only acceptable arrangement.


CCPA writes:

"Farm debt continues to grow at an unsustainable rate. By 2015 Canada's total outstanding farm debt had risen to over $92 billion. Total realized net farm income is less than one-tenth of this debt load. This means that farmers have little capacity to absorb higher costs. Even a small increase in interest rates would have a devastating effect, as many farmers would be unable to continue servicing their debts. Climate change continues to increase risks and expenses, making incomes more precarious and debt more onerous. Yet farmers do produce immense wealth every year. Most of that wealth is captured by powerful corporations that are able to control the prices of inputs such as seed, fertilizer, farm chemicals, fuel, and rail transportation. Prices paid for farm products are also controlled by a few large buyers: global grain companies, meat packers, and retailers. Meanwhile, land prices are increasingly influenced by farmland investment companies that collect high rents while speculating on land values. Farmers as individuals have very little power in the marketplace. Because of this, much of total farm debt is not due to investment in productive capacity but rather represents persistently insufficient margins due to others taking more than their fair share of the wealth farmers produce.

"To address farm debt it is necessary to reinvest in the institutional structures that protect farmers' interests by countering the monopolistic power of global agribusiness and food corporations.

"The Canadian Grain Commission (CGC) has been stripped of important roles and funding during the last decade. This needs to be reversed. The railways have reduced service and failed to properly invest in the grain transportation system in spite of being entitled to healthy profits through the Maximum Revenue Entitlement (a revenue cap).

"The Canadian Wheat Board, the farmer-directed single-desk selling agency for Prairie wheat and barley, was dismantled under the direction of the previous federal government in 2012, resulting in billions of dollars leaving Canada's farm economy annually since then.

"In 2016, the previously privatized Port of Churchill was closed. This will hit farmers in northern Manitoba and Saskatchewan particularly hard because it will cost them more to transport their grain to southern ports.

"By ratifying CETA (the Canada-EU trade deal), the federal government weakened our supply management system by increasing the European Union's share of our cheese market by 18,500 tonnes, reducing the size of Canada's domestic dairy market by an amount that could have supported 400 new entrant farmers.

"Canada's agriculture research institutions have also suffered severe funding cutbacks and numerous closures in the past decade. The previous government eliminated over 500 agriculture research positions between 2012 and 2015. Valuable research institutions and field research stations were closed in every region, impairing Canada's ability to respond to emerging challenges. Public assets and roles were irresponsibly transferred to the private sector. The task of restoring Canada's public interest in scientific and technical capacity in agriculture is both large and urgent, and will require significant resources."

Water Security

CCPA writes:

"There were 158 drinking water advisories in First Nation communities in fall 2016. Ninety-nine per cent of lakes and rivers in Canada are not protected by the Navigation Protection Act from potentially harmful activities. The proposed Energy East pipeline alone, of several new pipeline projects under consideration, puts 2,963 waterways at risk. Two hundred and five billion litres of raw sewage was flushed into waterways in Canada in 2015."

Public Water and Wastewater Infrastructure

CCPA writes:

"According to the 2016 Canadian Infrastructure Report Card, one-third of Canada's municipal infrastructure is at risk of rapid deterioration, 36 per cent of wastewater infrastructure is rated in fair to poor condition, and 29 per cent of drinking water infrastructure is in fair to very poor condition. The total replacement value of water, wastewater, and stormwater assets is $575 billion, according to the same report. The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) estimates the cost of replacing systems graded 'poor' or 'very poor' to be about $61 billion. The Liberal government committed $2 billion over four years for its new Clean Water and Wastewater Fund. Over 205 billion litres of raw sewage was flushed into waterways in Canada in 2015."

Federal Public Service

CCPA writes:

"Canada's population has increased by 43 per cent since 1983, but federal public service employment has only increased 3 per cent. Some 24,000 jobs have been lost since public service cuts in 2010. Many of these lost jobs need to be recovered if service levels are to be improved. Every $20 billion of currently proposed P3 infrastructure bank funding would result in an additional $6.2 billion in interest costs.

"The population of Canada grew from 25.3 million in 1983 to 36.2 million in 2016, an increase of 43 per cent. Meanwhile, the number of federal public servants increased from 250,882 in 1983 to 258,979 in 2016, an increase of only 3.1 per cent. From 1983 to 2015, Canada's real gross domestic product (GDP) increased by 120.8 per cent, while real federal program spending only increased by 52.6 per cent. The public service must grow if citizen demand is going to be met.

"Overall, government compensation costs have declined by 1.3 per cent or $120 million compared to last year. This is partly because the government is employing a precarious workforce. The number of full-time government employees is decreasing. At the same time, term employment has increased 9.3 per cent, casual employment by 8.3 per cent, and student employment by 6.0 per cent. The Public Service Commission reports that in 2015-16 there were 4,533 indeterminate workers hired overall, not counting departures and retirements. Over the same time there were 32,370 workers hired to fill jobs on a term, casual, or student basis."

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Palestinian Land Day

Long Live the Palestinian People and Their Resistance! All Out to End the Occupation!

Palestinians commemorate Land Day with march from Sakhnin to Deir Hanna.

March 30, 2017 marked the 41st Palestinian Land Day, commemorating the resistance struggle launched against land confiscations in the Galilee region of Palestine on March 30, 1976.[1] This resistance continues today against the ongoing theft of land and denial of rights by the Zionist occupying power, in defence of the Palestinian people's right to be. On this occasion, the Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) sends militant greetings to the Palestinian people and reiterates its undying support for their cause, which has become a cause of humanity.

As in previous years, marches, solemn ceremonies and gatherings in Palestine and around the world paid tribute to the martyrs of the past and affirmed that the resistance will never cease until justice is done. Marches took place among Palestinians inside Israeli borders such as in the Negev/Naqab as well as in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. Among other things, protesters planted trees and restored structures demolished by the Israeli authorities, especially where residents lost possession following lengthy legal battles against the eviction orders used by Israeli authorities to dispossess Palestinians. As in previous years, Palestinians faced violent repression from Israeli security forces when demonstrating.

Land Day commemorations in Gaza

Land confiscations, state terrorism and other violations of rights by the occupying power have further intensified this year. Since the beginning of 2017 the Israeli government has approved the construction of more than 6,219 illegal settlement homes in the occupied West Bank, including 719 in East Jerusalem. Reports also point to an increase in demolitions of Palestinian homes by the Zionist state. More than 24 Bedouin homes and other buildings around an illegal settlement in the West Bank have been demolished already this year. The Israeli Parliament adopted a law on February 6 to retroactively "legalize" 53 illegal settlements and outposts on Palestinian land taken by force, amounting to 80 hectares of land and more than 4,000 settlement dwellings.

On March 30, as the world marked Palestinian Land Day, the Israeli cabinet authorized formally for the first time in 20 years the construction of a new illegal settlement near the Palestinian city of Nablus in the occupied West Bank. Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the executive committee of the Palestine Liberation Organisation condemned the decision and stated, "Israel's relentless efforts to expand its illegal settlement enterprise with the aim of displacing Palestine and replacing it with 'Greater Israel' should send a strong message to governments worldwide that they need to intervene immediately and to undertake concrete measures to hold Israel accountable with serious punitive measures."

Palestinian Land Day is an occasion to reaffirm the resolve of the Palestinian people with the world's peoples behind them to bring about an end to the occupation and the affirmation of their rights. This is inseparable from the Palestinian people's fight against ongoing land seizures and for the return of the land that is their birthright. On Palestinian Land Day 2017, CPC(M-L) calls on Canadians to step up their opposition to the continued violations of the rights of the Palestinian people and stand as one in defence of their right to be.


1. On March 30, 1976, Palestinians living in villages in the Galilee region declared a general strike and protested against land confiscations. At that time, Israel had embarked on a national project to construct new Jewish-Israeli localities in the region that included lands of Palestinian citizens. Israel responded with state violence, killing six Palestinians. A total of 20,000 dunams (2,000 hectares) were confiscated at that time. Israeli soldiers killed six protestors and injured more than 100 in the efforts to quell the resistance.

(With files from Palestine News Network, Al Jazeera English. Photos: M. Asad, H. Motola)

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Occupation Holds More Than
85 Per Cent of Historic Palestine

Click to enlarge.

On the eve of the 41st Anniversary of Land Day March 30, 2017, Ola Awad, President of the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics (PCBS) presented figures and statistics highlighting the significance of the occasion. The Palestinian people each year mark the confiscation of 21,000 dunums (more than 2,000 hectares) of land in Al-Jalil, Al-Muthalth and Al-Naqab on 30 March 1976 by Israeli authorities, who subsequently killed six young protestors.

According to PCBS, Israeli occupation authorities hold more than 85 per cent of the historic land of Palestine, about 27,000 square kilometres. Within this, Arabs comprise 48 per cent of the total population, but have access to only 15 per cent of the land.

Forty Per Cent of West Bank Converted to Israeli State Land

After the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in 1967, the occupation authorities began transferring land ownership registers, formerly overseen by Jordanian authorities, and land considered state property since the Ottoman era to their possession, amounting to 527,000 dunums (52,700 hectares). At the same time, land registration by Palestinians was frozen.

By the end of 1973, the Israeli occupation authorities confiscated another 160,000 dunums (16,000 hectares) as "state land." Between 1979 and 2002, another 900,000 dunums (90,000 hectares) were looted. The area now considered "state land" by the Israeli occupation authorities totals more than 2,247,000 dunums (224,700 hectares), representing around 40 per cent of the West Bank, according to the PCBS.

Occupation Policy of Demolitions in Jerusalem

The Israeli occupation authorities continue to demolish Palestinian buildings and obstruct the issuing of new building permits on occupied Palestinian territory, such as in and around the capital Jerusalem. At the same time, the Israeli occupation continues to approve licenses for the construction of housing units for Israeli settlements. In 2016, occupation authorities demolished around 309 Palestinian buildings in Jerusalem and issued a further 227 demolition orders. The major demolitions in Jerusalem were carried out in the Abu Nawar district, including targeting the only school there and its six classrooms, as well as a mosque under construction in Sur Bahir.

Nearly Half of Settlements Occupy Private Palestinian Land

By the end of 2015, 413 distinct Israeli settlements existed in the West Bank, including 150 housing settlements and 119 outposts. Around 48 per cent of the area of these settlements was located on privately-owned Palestinian land, according to the PCBS. In 2016, the occupying power authorized 115 new settlement plans, including the construction of more than 5,000 housing units.

The same authorities deprived Palestinians of their right to build on their land, in particular undermining any urban expansion, especially for Palestinians in Jerusalem and "Area C" which is under full Israeli military control. "Area C" constitutes more than 60 per cent of the West Bank. In the past five years, out of 97 Palestinian building plans submitted for approval of the occupation authorities, only four were accepted. The Israeli expansion and annexation wall also isolates more than 12 per cent of West Bank land.

PCBS figures indicate that there were more than 617,291 Zionist settlers in the West Bank by the end of 2015. Of these, 292,555 lived in Jerusalem Governorate and of this 214,135 in Jerusalem "J1," area forcibly annexed by Israel when it began its occupation of the West Bank in 1967. There are around 21 settlers per 100 Palestinians in the West Bank overall, compared to 69 settlers per 100 Palestinians in Jerusalem Governorate.

Policy of Ethnic Cleansing of Palestinians in West Bank

The Israeli occupation authorities continue their policy of ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in the West Bank through home demolition and settlements to uproot the people from their land. In 2016, Israeli authorities demolished 1,023 Palestinian houses and establishments in the West Bank (309 in Jerusalem Governorate), and issued a further 657 demolition orders. These demolitions led to the displacement of more than 1,620 Palestinian citizens, half of them children.

Continuous Siege on Gaza Strip

Despite its small area, the Israeli authorities claim a "buffer zone" of more than 1,500 metres from the eastern border of the Gaza Strip. As a result, the occupation has usurped more than 24 per cent of the total area of Gaza (365 square kilometres). The Gaza Strip is considered among the most densely populated areas in the world, with around 5,000 people per square kilometre.


1. Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics 2016: Israeli settlements in the West Bank, 2015. Ramallah- Palestine

2. Abdullah Al-Hourani Center for Studies and Documentation, Annual Report, 2016.

3. National Office for the Defence of the Land and to Resist Settlements. 2016

4. The Applied Research Institute of Jerusalem (ARIJ). 2016

(Palestine News Network, March 30, 2017. Infographic: Anadolu Agency)

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