Elizabeth May should admit the Green Party made a huge mistake in the early stages of the conflict in Libya.

I have been phoning the Green Party office many times as well as going into my local office here in Victoria. I keep asking over and over again why Elizabeth May supported the bombing of Libya in the early stages of the conflict and why she changed her mind and finally voted against the call to extend the bombing of Libya.
It is important to us because we need to understand how she will deal with future conflicts.
After speaking to different people at the Green Party offices, I’m left boggled at how they could possibly run a country. For example: When I ask them what Elizabeth Mays’ stand would be in future conflicts, the people will tell me what “they” think they would do and not what Elizabeth May would do. When I point out that their answer doesn’t give me any clue as to what Elizabeth May would do, they give me this blank stare back as if I’m from mars.
I would like to be able to laugh but it bothers me that a party can talk about lofty goals that will be impossible to fulfill because they clearly have no policy on how to keep Canada out of regime change, costly foreign wars.
Every time I have asked a question her office moves the goal posts. For example: When I pointed out that her office had supported the bombing in the early stages of the conflict, I was told that she voted NO in the house to extend the bombing. But that was “Later” I wanted to know why she supported bombing in the early stages of the conflict.
Then she said that she thought it was a “peace keeping mission”. This is odd because Harper had come out of one of the very early meetings and announced that the mission was all about regime change.
Now I hear from the Green Party of Canada that Elizabeth May “might” possibly admit that “everyone, including the Green Party of Canada” had made a mistake in the early decision on LIbya and that they would never make that mistake again.
By the way….. I have always said that if Elizabeth May admits that she was part of that horrible mistake, then I could accept that admission. We all make mistakes.
I am currently waiting for final confirmation from her office on that admission.
I don’t like to see people try to sweep things under the rug.
For several years now I have been treated as if my phone calls to the Green Party of Canada never took place. And yet I swear that I had spent over an hour on the phone in the early stages of the conflict in Libya trying to convince the party not to bomb Libya. I was asked over and over again….. “Deryk…..do you want another Rwanda. If we don’t agree to bombing then that is what will happen.”

Elizabeth May should have listened to her father

I just watched the following video of Elizabeth May speaking in the house regarding her change of position in Libya. It is a well spoken speech. It is just too bad that she didn’t take her fathers advice that Bombing only increases resolve to stand up to ones enemies. She tries to give the impression that she only supported the mission against Libya in the early stages of the war because she claims it was a “Peacekeeping” mission. Which is totally untrue as it was very clear from the early stages of the conflict that it was a bombing mission. She even supported the mission for several days after Harper had openly declared that the mission was “all about regime change.” I can’t for the life of me understand why she supported the bombing, thinking it was a peace keeping mission when it clearly was a bombing mission in every other person’s mind. The video can be watched at the following link http://elizabethmaymp.ca/military-action-libya

Great speech. It is just a shame that she didn’t follow her heart in the early stages of the conflict thinking that bombing people would change things. A peace keeping mission is where two opposing sides have a conflict and agree to a set of new rules on how to move towards a peaceful solution and they invite a non biased group to step in between them and monitor them to make sure they keep their word.  A peacekeeping mission does not take sides. In Libya, there was no such plan or agreements in place.

Elizabeth May has completely missed the point of the use of force and how peacekeeping has worked historically. I find that incredulous as well. She has no idea what a peacekeeping mission is about.

That’s why the Green Party of Canada needs  a new leader. It is such a shame because mrkite2 she appears to be a nice person

Elizabeth May of the Green party of Canada has failed us

It is getting close to the election and I have been phoning the Green Party of Canada to ask a serious question about the use of force in any future conflicts. I have been repeatedly told that someone will get back to me with an answer but they never do.
I want to know why Elizabeth May supported the idea of bombing Libya in the early stages of the war. When I had phoned their office at that time, I was told that it was either we support bombing or we will have another Rwanda. This shocked me because non violence is a core value of the Green Party.
I do appreciate that Elizabeth May later changed her mind and voted no to extending the bombing on Libya, but no one will explain why she changed her position. One day she supports bombing. The next day she is against it. I need to know how to predict what the Green Party of Canada’s position will be in future conflicts and after repeatedly asking for answers from the Green Party of Canada, I am ignored and they all fall silent.
The people who work in the office don’t even seem to grasp the question. They can’t answer how Elizabeth May would react to a future conflict and yet they blindly follow her like sheep. “Green” sounds good I guess.
I find it shocking how little supporters seem to know and yet are working in the office asking people to support the party.
Jo-anne Roberts in Victoria seems incapable of responding either. They just keep their heads down and hope that people who ask difficult questions of the party, will somehow disappear.
It seems very odd to me if they want to earn any respect and support.
It is the blind leading the blind. Like they are all in a trance.
“Green” sounds good……so vote “Green”.
Sorry. But that is just not good enough.

Green Party of Canada and Elizabeth May

In order to vote for the Green Party of Canada, I need to know the thinking process that led Elizabeth May to change her position on the bombing of Libya. In the early stages of that conflict, her office stated very clearly that bombing was necessary  or we would face another Rwanda.

I was dumbfounded that the party would ever support bombing to solve any issue because “Non Violence” is one of it’s core values.

At the time, I pointed out to no avail, that bombing would only make matters worse….. as history has now proven correct.)

Granted, she did eventually vote against the bombing of Libya in the House, but no reason has been given for the change of policy.

Her answer to my question would go a long way in helping me know whether she understands  the party’s core value of “Non Violence.

More importantly, her explanation might help us predict how she would approach future  conflicts in the world.

I’m still waiting for their answer.



Elizabeth May….ignored core values of the Green Party of Canada

Elizabeth May stood by silently as the Harper government of Canada admitted that the bombing of Libya was about regime change. (Regime change is against international law).
It wasn’t until some time later that Elizabeth May became uncomfortable with the idea that she decided to vote against the bombing of Libya. I certainly give her credit for doing that but not only did it take her some time to swing around to that conclusion, she is currently trying to cover up her original silence and support.
I had phoned her office in the very early stages of the war in Libya and I was shocked to have them tell me that they supported the bombing otherwise we would have another Rwanda. I tried unsuccessfully to persuade them that bombing would only create more hatred and more extremists. The Green Party of Canada kept insisting that it was bombing or another Rwanda. When I tried to remind them of Gandhi’s beautiful words of peace they then pointed out that Gandhi was not that great of a man and he was full of flaws.
I was shocked by their stand and felt completely betrayed.
When Tony Blair supported Bush in the attack on Iraq without getting final UN approval, he also ignored international law because it was clearly stated by Bush while Blair stood at his side.
Elizabeth May did the same by originally supporting Harper after he had said publicly that the bombing on Libya was all about regime change.
My guess is that she was later given advice on how serious a crime regime change is and it was only after that that she then changed positions.
My question is: Does the Green Party of Canada want a leader who does not understand the core values of the party which is non violence?
Do they want a leader who makes a mistake (as we all do) but then tries to cover her actions up as if nothing ever happened?
This is why the Green Party of Canada needs leadership change.

Elizabeth May – Green Party of Canada

For many years now my work has been about peace. That came into focus for me during my work in Iraq after the first Gulf war. During that time, I tried to understand how our governments made decisions to go to war or how they could shamelessly crush the ordinary people into submission through sanctions etc.
I discovered that our governments make some of their biggest mistakes when they ignore the very basic core values. Things like children’s rights, international law or non violence.
That is why in the early stages of the Libya conflict I saw red flags waving and I phoned the Green Party of Canada and the NDP after hearing them defend the idea of bombing Libya. I was quite shocked.
The agreed framing among all the world leaders at the time was to say “Do you want another Rwanda?”. (The proper question should have been, “Do you want to create more extremists and deaths by bombing?”)
I was very upset that the only two parties that I could vote for were agreeing to use bombing as a solution. I asked to speak to someone higher up the chain in the NDP and the Green Party of Canada and eventually both parties got back to me at a higher level and I was able to voice my concerns that bombing would only cause more extremism and more deaths which would lead to even more hate etc. I spent ages on the phone going over and over the problem. But both parties held firm and lectured me on Rwanda. They did not want another Rwanda and so they supported the bombing.
I couldn’t believe my ears.They didn’t understand the idea of non violence.
This is the reason that I am now asking for Elizabeth May to step down as leader of the Green Party of Canada because when anyone tries to challenge her on her early stand on Libya she immediately points to the fact that she was the only one to vote no on Libya. What she is covering up is the fact that she only took this stand “after” things started to go sideways. The truth is that she ignored the core values of non violence at the time when it was needed the most. This is what bothers me now. The fact that she would lie about this adds insult to injury.
The records even show her agreeing to bombing after Harper said publicly, “make no mistake about this, this is about regime change”.
(Regime change is against international law).

At one point she called for bombing…. but  balanced with diplomacy in order to keep the number of deaths down. (I can only garner from this that Elizabeth May thinks a few deaths are ok. She needs to understand that  this is not the philosophy of “Non Violence”)
That is why I want her to stand down as leader of the party.
The Green Party of Canada and it’s close supporters seem to think that if they keep their head in the sand no one will notice the hypocrisy.
No one in the party seems to worry about this breach of trust and that is why I am predicting they will  never win an election.

Green Party of Canada shreds it’s core values of non violence

I find it interesting to see Elizabeth May of the Green Party of Canada, struggle to rewrite history regarding her stand on the support of regime change and bombing of Libya.
When she is challenged on the subject, she points to the fact that she was the only one who stood up in parliament and spoke against the bombing. What she is not admitting is that she supported the bombing in the most crucial early stages, ignoring the Green Party of Canada’s core values of non violence.
Here is the accurate history for those who are not familiar with the events at the time.
On March 19th, 2011, Canada’s prime minister Stephan Harper made the unbelievable endorsement for regime change in Libya when he stated, “He simply will not last very long. I think that is the basis on which were moving forward. If I am being frank here, that is probably more understood than spoken aloud. But I just said it out loud”.
This statement was shocking on it’s own because regime change is against international law, but I was equally dumfounded when the Green Party of Canada didn’t speak up and drop all support for the bombing immediately, knowing full well that this was now an illegal act under international law. (Also against their own core values on non violence)
Instead we heard Elizabeth May make the following statement a few days later on March 26th 2011. “Military presence must be balanced by diplomatic efforts to ensure that loss of life and damage to infrastructure is minimized”.
Elizabeth May and the Green Party of Canada needs to understand that non violence means non violence. The reason for that is because bombing never works. (It also results in innocent children and others being torn to shreds.)
Why was Elizabeth May supporting bombing knowing full well that it was about regime change with Harpers comments?
Why was she saying bombing was ok as long as everyone makes some attempt to ensure loss of life to a minimum, when the core value of the Green Party is for non violence?
Elizabeth May made a horrific mistake by supporting the idea of bombing at the early stage. She did change her mind later but it is clear she does not understand the core values of the party.
At the time, in the very early stages of Canada’s involvement, I phoned the Green Party of Canada and was absolutely shocked by what I was told.I spent hours on the phone trying to make them understand what they were doing to no avail. I pointed out that bombing would only lead to more misery and extremism in the region. They said, “Do you want another Rwanda”?
The Green Party of Canada was suckered into this failed policy by the way the issue was framed. “Do you want another Rwanda?” No one would say yes to that idea. But it was the wrong question. The question should have been, “Do you think bombing will create more extremism in the region?”
We can all now see the resulting mess in the middle east after our leaders have argued that a few more bombs here and there will solve the problem. (They still hold that view which is incredible)
I could easily have seen myself vote for the Green Party of Canada in the past. I couldn’t think of voting for them now unless I hear Elizabeth May admit that she made a dreadful mistake of stepping onto that slippery slope of thinking bombing would solve the problem. It was a catastrophic mistake. The core values of the party are meaningless.
What saddens me is that the NDP party of Canada made the same mistake at the time when they also supported the bombing.
We have lost our way and need new leaders and it is time to take a new look at what the Green Party of Canada is all about.

Cities about to change dramatically

I just read an interesting article in the New York Times by David Carr. It talks about the “Unease Over HoloLens in Screen-Obsessed Lives”.
I enjoyed his article very much. We are a strange species for sure! One does indeed wonder why we seem so obsessed with creating an artifical world when we have the richness of a real world.
One thing I would have liked to have seen the article explore further is the explosion of change that I feel is about to change our cities forever.
I believe that in a very short time, this technology will turn our concept of the city upside down. (The current trend is for cities to grow).
This new technology will eliminate commuter rush hour.
Think about how much resources we spend in order to support our current city design.
We build multi million dollar office towers that require heating, cooling, and maintenance for twenty four hours a day and yet we only use them seven hours a day.
People spend several “hours” a day driving into the cities to then sit at a computer screen. The gas bill for that is enormous not to mention the cost of the extra car, time wasted and the enormous polution.
We also build billion dollar rapid transit lines that are used for one quarter of the day.
Add the cost of expensive multi level, concrete overpasses and the large tolls for bridges.
The costs are (((enormous)))).
I believe that our business world is the largest change about to hit our lives with this new emerging technology… and yet I don’t see people talking about it.
Even the forward thinker like David Carr only mentioned the possibility of doing “conferences” with this new 3D technology. He talked mostly about the games potential.
Our whole world is rapidly going through a major paradigm shift with this new technology.
My biggest concern is that we seem oblivious to the change about to happen and we continue to build larger parking towers in our cities. Even our universities are building larger parking lots. (Can you imagine? Our best thinkers still cram hundreds of students in a room and don’t even allow recording of the lecture! (Talk about being out of touch with the future of education:)
I believe that people will move to cheaper, larger homes in smaller communities and spend more free time with their children in the real world. Right now they are living in stuffy shoe boxes in large cities with their faces jammed into the computer screen everywhere they go.
Businesses are already making changes. Large offices are downsizing and moving a large chunk of their staff to cheaper, smaller offices in smaller cities. The next logical step and the real winners will be the businesses that can cut the cord completely and interact with their employees using this new hologram technology. They will save billions when they find the courage to make this change and will then run circles around their competition. Our children will be the ones to make this step. They already have friends around the world and spend hours playing in the artificial game world.
I find it so funny to see our current business executives still stuck in the horse and buggy mode.

Tony Blair: Fight war of ideas against extremism


I should be up front and say that I feel Tony Blair is an ignorant man who should be tried for war crimes. I know that sounds harsh but I truly believe that he made a catastrophic  mistake when he supported  George Bush in the invasion of Iraq. That invasion ignored international law and has largely led to the problems we have today in the middle east.

Having said that, I generally support his recent article “Fight war of ideas against extremism”,where he points out that the world should be looking at finding solutions to ISIS  other than simply trying to bomb them into submission. He points to education. You can read his article here. http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29553001

However, I still feel that he hasn’t fully developed his thoughts on the subject. He clearly sees the problem as “their” problem. That somehow “they” need to change. “They need an education”. I agree that education will help with that. But Tony Blair is still totally oblivious to the fact that the west desperately needs to make major changes to how it conducts itself around the world. This is a huge ommission on Tony Blairs part and until leaders like him address this idea then all the wars and all the killing will continue and all the deaths in the past will have been for nothing.

The west needs to address the hypocrisy of ignoring internatioal law when it suits their interests as it did in Iraq. They need to stop participating in regime change which is also against international law and for good reason.

The west  has to stop interfering in other countries. The invasions and sanctions inflict  extreme  havoc on a countries stability. Millions of people fled Iraq after the first Gulf war. Millions spilled out during the crushing sanctions and fled to Jordan and Syria. These refugees caused enormous stress and damage to Syria and the region, helping create the tensions that led to the upheavel we see going on today.

When I spent time in Iraq during those sanction years, it was obvious that the entire region was festering with hate for the west. Entire families were reduced to scavaging. An entire generation of young men and women had no hope for an education or a real job. The suffering was  well reported at the time but Tony Blair ignored the reports coming in from many agencies on the ground in Iraq. UNICEF, for example, reported that several hundred thousand children died as a direct result of those sanctions. Can you imagine the hate that that alone would generate? No hope. No future. No education. And now Mr. Blair talks about how these people need to be educated. After he played a huge part in blocking it in the first place.

I expected blowback and we saw that with 911.  The unravelling of the middle east was predicted by many scholars at the time, but we see headlines by world leaders today saying that they never saw this coming.

My point is that Tony Blair and western leaders seem  oblivious to the death and destruction we have done. His article makes that clear. He sees the change needed as one sided. If only “those” people would get some education. When in fact, it should be both sides that need an honest reflection on what they are doing.

We saw this same one sided view with the fall of the former Soviet Union. The west smuggly patted itself on the back because it thought that our economic model was the best. But Gorbachev had pointed out in his book, Perestroika, that “both” sides needed to reflect on how we do business and structure our society. (we now have bank failures, debt and stagnation that is suffocating our children’s future)

Tony Blair is  the same fool that he was when he left political office.

I hope the west comes to it’s senses and makes radical changes to our policies of  bullying and pushing our weight around the world. The hate that we see aimed at us comes from the millions of lives that we  have extinguished . It comes from the millions of refugees that have had to gather up all their children and belongings and trudge across deserts looking for somewhere to rest and find food.

There was another recent article by, Jonathan Powell on CNN. (http://edition.cnn.com/2014/10/15/opinion/powell-isis/index.html?hpt=hp_c1)

He stresses the need to talk to terrorists. I certainly agree with that idea. We need to find out what it is these groups want and you can only do that by talking. As he says in his article, these groups are not unique or special. They will always pop up and you simply can’t kill every one of them. You need to know why they pop up and how they get support to exist in the first place.

I believe that the best way to defeat groups like ISIS is to knock the pins out of their support. Treat people with dignity and respect as you would expect to be treated. Speak out when you see countries ignore international law or ignore  UN mandates.

Pay the complete costs for rebuilding when you bomb them.

Better yet…..just stop bombing them.

Municipality of Oak Bay, Piano Painted by Deryk Houston (June 2014)


I am excited about doing this project for the Oak Bay municipality. It was organized by Barbara Adams.
After sitting looking at the piano for some time, I decided to change my original idea. I thought the design would work better to frame the landscape with abstract lines and colour variations. I wanted to play with the idea of peace and my thoughts turned to John Lennon’s “Imagine.
I painted some music in thin lines across the landscape image section, but I made a mistake with the spacing of the notes and as I reworked that portion it occurred to me that it might be good to just leave out the musical notes, allowing people to fill in their own music for the space in their imagination.
As I worked, students from the school would stop and ask questions. At the start of the project I was repeatedly asked why I was painting a piano. They seemed mystified that anyone would paint a piano because pianos were meant to be black. brown or white. As the work progressed The students became quite excited about the colours and stopped asking why I was painting a piano. They seemed more interested in where it would go and if they could play it. Some students asked if I would place their names on it and so I did. They were so excited to see their names as part of the painted piano and they would bring their friends around and show them. More names were added by request. (I didn’t use their last names.)
I placed nuclear formulas across the surface. Some for nuclear war. Some for nuclear medicine. It is about choices.
The colours and the decorative look reminded me of the Beatles Rolls Royce and so I emphasized and worked with that in mind.
I like the idea of taking something that has an expected quality or image and then transforming that into something more fun and less establishment. Making it more unusual. Not unlike the idea of finding a piano in the street or in a landscape where one would not expect it.
I take my art seriously. I have introduced several ideas into this work. I am interested in war and peace. Communication is difficult and it can lead to conflict.
In the art world, there are those who like the abstract and those who like more traditional works such as landscapes. They often have a lack of respect for each other. One easily dismisses the other. I’m fascinated by that because, like most conflicts, the two sides often have many things in common than they might realize.
That is why I have combined landscape with the abstract in this work.
I think they can work together well and I enjoy both.