Monday, September 22, 2014
Text Size

Connecting the dots …

Review of current events from the perspective of Resource Rulers: Fortune and Folly on Canada’s road to Resources

Bill Gallagher, author / strategist / lawyer


A number of intersections are interrupting the flow of traffic on Canada’s Road to Resources. Some of these involve sharp left-turns that I alerted readers to be ‘on the lookout for’ in previous posts. One has to connect the dots as Resource Rulers does:


First connection: In August 2013 I had this to say about the two native legal challenges still ‘dogging’ Muskrat Falls:

“Two native lawsuits recently launched challenging Nalcor’s Muskrat Falls hydropower project. Of special interest is Nunatsiavut’s assertion of the (less litigated) duty to accommodate. The other suit is NunatuKavut (Labrador Metis) asserting shortcomings in the duty to consult. These two lawsuits arrive at a critical juncture for this hotly-debated project given: 1) Hydro-Quebec’s simultaneous legal win over its control of transmission line access; 2) plus Hydro-Quebec’s recent litigation asserting control over the entire expanse of Churchill Falls watershed rights. Bottom line: if ever a project needed native support - it’s Muskrat Falls.”

That was then. Now the native empowerment dots have connected with Premier Dunderdale’s recent resignation (see Quebec v. Labrador post on First Perspective).


Second connection: In June 2013 I quoted this ruling about the B.C. government’s unduly narrow interpretation of the Douglas Treaty:

d) Did the Provincial Crown have a Duty to Consult in respect of the Kwakiutl First Nation Traditional Territory beyond the KFN Treaty Lands?

[123]     The Provincial Crown concedes that it had a duty to consult with respect to the treaty rights but denies this duty extended to the whole KFN Traditional Territory. (excerpt Chartrand v The District Manager 2013 BCSC 1068) (author’s underlining)

That was then. Now the native empowerment dots have connected as a blockade has been thrown up (into its 12th day) over the clear-cutting of trees (see Kwakiutl First Nation Launches Protest post on First Perspective).


Third connection: In July 2013 I had this to say about the National Chief winning native legal win #183 - ‘modern right to fish and sell fish’:

“For the second time in two years, the BC Court of Appeal has ruled that the Nuu-chah-nulth (NCN) have “a modern right … to fish and sell fish”. Again this ruling is from the National Chief’s home town, making Shawn Atleo unique for being a two-time winner in the annals of the native legal winning streak. And in this second ruling, the highest court in the province actually made a point of highlighting the Crown’s dubious legal strategy:

[32] It should be recalled that prior to this action, the appellant (Canada) never recognized that the respondents (NCN) had an Aboriginal right to fish.”

That was then. Now the native empowerment dots have connected with this ruling upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada (as I predicted). Thus it’s high time to ask why the principles in the Marshall rulings from 1999 took 15 years to cross over to the other coast!


In summary, the rise of native empowerment has just served up some unexpected left-turns on the road to resources: involving a premier stepping back from her pet project; an ongoing blockade in BC’s forestry industry, and the highest-level native legal win in the BC fishery. Readers of First Perspective might well have seen these intersections coming!


This is where Resource Rulers excels - connecting the dots - telling Canadians that there’s an easier way to access resources than reliance on the litigator’s toolbox!


Whatever Trevor

Dis is Trevor.

Education & Training

Blast from the past: FP archive

When is Consultation, Consultation?

Ovide Mercredi

National Chief – AFN

During a Treaty Roundtable meeting of the Alberta Chiefs, I took note of a federal government document outlining their strategy to define and ultimately impose their own form of self-government. Read more...

Letting go of residential schools

by Gilbert Oskaboose, Nov 1993 First Perspective

There is a lot of "unfinished business" in Indian Country. Garbage that we as a people have never really dealt with. Chief among them is the whole issue of those infamous residential schools and their impact on people. Read more...


obidiah picture

ANALYSIS - Bill Gallagher

gallagher picture

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit


Regional Media Officer– Temp (Until Nov 2015) –F/T Position

Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition / NDP Research Office

Location:131 Queen Street, Suite 10-02, Ottawa, ON


Communicate regularly with regional media outlets (community newspapers, radio stations, student media, ethnic media, etc.) to propose ideas for interviews and opinion content Read more...

Canadian Chamber of Commerce Aboriginal Workforce Report

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce released a report that highlights initiatives to improve the workforce participation of Aboriginal peoples. 

Opportunity Found: Improving the Participation of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada’s Workforce (December 2013)  

click image to download report

Tue Sep 23 @ 3:00PM - 04:15PM
FNHMA National Conference 2014
Sun Oct 05 @ 9:00AM - 05:00PM
INIHKD & Manitoba NEAHR Conference 2014


September 2014
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 1 2 3 4

Current Video

RIP Percy Tuesday


Thanks to Althea Guiboche for allowing The First Perspective to share her video taken at the Manitowapow book launch at McNally Robinson. 

Percey sings Freddy Fender's "Wasted Days and Wasted Nights" and people join in to harmonize. 

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO): The Washington Redskins