Canadian Colonialism — Conservative Style.

May 8th, 2010 | 3 comments

Canada's theocolonialist base gains new supporters from the South.

As Harper’s Conservatives spearhead a G8 initiative on maternal health in impoverished countries, the government refuses to include funding for abortion (despite the obvious need for it — see this 2006 report). Perspectives of power:

a/ Withholding abortion as a colonial weapon: Canada sets the 21C precedent in dictating the biotechnics of population control — and gender equality. In impoverished and poorly educated countries, patriarchal relations often restrict the use of contraception. No abortion, no choice, no knowledge, no change. Canada supports theopatriarchal systems of control, ignorance and governance.

b/ What happens abroad is a fantasy for the homeland. Denying abortion to others is a display of power among the powerless, and nothing satisfies the theocolonialist base more than enjoying the spectacle of their leader wielding the primitive tool of phallogocentric power over the weak. (Withholding abortion is phallogocentrism at is height: the yield of the phallus must prevail at its most transcendental moment, when sperm are signified by the sacred.) Of course, political power games trump true beneficence — we could say the Hippocratic Oath with strings attached yields hypocritical health. This charitable gift from Canada is theocolonialism by any other name; it bears historical precedence from handing out blankets infected with smallpox to First Nations.

The invisible other trumps the impoverished other.

c/ Sure, it’s fine for us but not for them. As the Conservatives lack the support (and the courage) to challenge abortion in Canada (most Canadians support abortion outright), they force their patriarchal fantasies of control over women’s bodies upon the (un)health of the other. Create a war elsewhere: let it serve as a model for the war (we want to see) at home. A minority government exports hypocritical health, dictating the terms of social medical policy without negotiation nor dialogue with the other (and their needs), thus demonstrating the full extent of Conservative desires for authoritarian social control. At least the stakes are evident. In the media plays out a fantasy of control (as the Conservatives stand fast).

d/ On display is a shadowplay of power that is nonetheless the very spectacle of enforcement for which the Conservative Right is organising day and night to see executed at home. If you can’t upend the politics at home fast enough in dismantling the rights of women (Canada’s Conservatives have erased “gender equality” from the federal policy agenda), then why not just export it abroad to impoverished countries that have no choice in the matter? This is a call to arms: the struggle for gender equality is far from over.

Women should not speak when the fantasy of the patriarchal spectacle of phallogocentric power is on the channel.

e/ If Hillary Clinton publicly reprimands Canada on the matter, then you know that the ideological posturing of Canada’s Conservative minority government is just that — a political smokescreen without substance. There is no true risk in the Conservative maternal health policy: no country is going to challenge them on it, as the matter is simply an annoyance, an evident pandering to nationalist politics. Other G8 countries will simply step in to provide abortion services. So what is the point? That the pro-life / Catholic / Christian / Evangelical / right-wing nonetheless sees it as a victory. It matters not as to its ineffectiveness. Much like the tank parades and missile marches of the Cold War, what matters is the show-parade display of power among hostile media. Canada’s Conservatives are playing with the health and lives of women worldwide through a fantasy of theocolonial power that appeals to their right-wing, Christian base.

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    3 Responses to “Canadian Colonialism — Conservative Style.”

    1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Jordan Hale and Jordan Hale, tobias c. van Veen. tobias c. van Veen said: Canadian Colonialism — Conservative Style. [ new post on fugitive.philosophy ] http://bit.ly/aceCf2 #abortion #canada #g8 #patriarchy […]

    2. Canadian Colonialism — Conservative Style. [ new post on fugitive.philosophy ] http://bit.ly/aceCf2 #abortion #canada #g8 #patriarchy

    3. Jordan Hale says:

      RT @fugitivephilo: Canadian Colonialism — Conservative Style. [ new post on fugitive.philosophy ] http://bit.ly/aceCf2 #abortion #canada …