If you’re still confused on this Saturday morning about what the Indians want this time around, “Blaze” Carlson has the low-down for ya!  I guess they call her ‘Blaze’ because she’s hot!
(I just had a thought, because the Perspective Naked News Department supplied this post, then shouldn’t Kathryn also be ………………., naked?)

Kathryn Blaze Carlson
Manny Jules has spent a whole lifetime listening to complaints. He was a chief, his father was a chief and his grandfather was a First Nations band councillor for three decades.
He remembers his father saying back in 1968 that First Nations communities “have to be able to move at the speed of business,” including and especially when it comes to leasing reserve lands ripe for economic growth. Complaints about the onerous and convoluted leasing process — which, thanks to the Indian Act, can take years and cost thousands in lawyering — persisted throughout his own tenure as a chief and, nearly 40 years on, right up until today.
As recently as mid-December, Mr. Jules and several chiefs voiced their own disdain for the way the Indian Act governs land leasing, asking Parliament to get rid of certain provisions that add months, if not years, of delay.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickThe Harper government heeded those calls and streamlined the process, but instead of garnering praise or even getting by with apathy, Ottawa was met with uproar and threats.
More specifically, Prime Minister Stephen Harper was met with Idle No More, an Occupy-type movement that claims he only amended the Indian Act because of a malevolent agenda to sell off reserve lands, and a hunger strike launched by Theresa Spence, the Chief of the Attawapiskat band that became infamous last year over a housing crisis despite millions of dollars flowing into the community.
The movement has been criticized for lacking a concrete agenda and for failing to put forth tangible solutions, but NDP MP Charlie Angus, whose riding includes Attawapiskat, defends the grassroots protest saying “it’s there and it’s tangible.”
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean KilpatrickAttawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence during a press conference outside her teepee on Victoria Island in Ottawa on Friday.
“People should step back and see this movement for what it is,” he said. “It’s not ‘fix this one thing’ or ‘change that’ and everything goes back to being hunky-dory. This is about a broken relationship and how we can get back to where we need to be.”
Mr. Harper said Friday he will meet with a delegation of First Nations leaders on Jan. 11, nearly one year since his first Crown-First Nations meeting. Chief Spence, who promised to fast until she landed a meeting with him and the Governor General, will attend the rendez-vous but will keep striking until then.
Mr. Jules said he understands her frustration and the anger vocalized by Idle No More — he, too, laments the Indian Act — but the complaints, this time, do not resonate with him.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young Stephen Harper greets autoworkers at Ford Motor plant in Oakville Friday.
“I, like all the other people who are protesting, am opposed to poverty, but I see these recent changes as a practical approach to making it easier for First Nations to develop an economy,” said Mr. Jules, a member of the Kamloops Indian Band and chairman of the federal First Nations Tax Commission. “What [the government] is trying to do is legislate us back into the economy.”
Mr. Harper’s approach to the First Nations file has not been transformative, but instead incremental — by making small changes within the boundaries of reality, the Prime Minister is chipping away at what many view as a wholly intractable situation.
Several people close to him say “incremental” is a key tenet of his overall political strategy, and even Aboriginal Affairs Minister John Duncan’s spokesman, Jan O’Driscoll, used the word in characterizing his government’s approach: “Our government is taking concrete, but incremental, steps to create the conditions for healthier, more self-sufficient First Nation communities.”
Sweeping things like [Paul Martin’s] Kelowna Accord don’t really solve problems
Stockwell Day, a longtime senior Cabinet minister, has said the Prime Minister is focused squarely on the art of the possible, loath to mount the sort of lofty ambitions that history has so often proved impossible. It is ironic, then, that the very approach he avoids is the one Idle No More has embodied. While Mr. Harper is hyper-focused on what he can realistically change, the movement has not made any specific demands or proposed tangible solutions, spiralling instead into an amalgam of grievances that makes the problem feel so huge that it cannot possibly be solved.
But just because the Prime Minister does not believe in magic-bullet solutions, it does not mean there has been no progress under his watch, his supporters say.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris YoungAn Idle No More activist protests outside of the Ford plant in Oakville Friday.

One more week of hunger: Spence vows to continue strike until meeting with PM next Friday

Chief Theresa Spence expressed joy Friday at news that Prime Minister Stephen Harper has agreed to meet First Nations leaders, but said she won’t end her hunger strike until the meeting actually takes place next Friday.
“I’m just really overjoyed to hear that the Crown, the prime minister and the government, that they’re going to meet with us,” she said. “I’ll still be here on my hunger strike until the actual meeting takes place.”
Spence plans to attend the meetings in person, she added. “I’ll be there with my chiefs.”
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Mr. Harper, they point out, was the first prime minister to stand up in the House of Commons and apologize for the Residential Schools system. He was the first to endorse the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. He was the first to extend the Canadian Human Rights Act to aboriginals living on reserves. He was the first to appoint an Innu Cabinet minister and the first to have two aboriginal ministers in Cabinet at the same time. Sporting yellow face-paint and a feathered headdress, he was the first sitting prime minister to be named an honourary chief.
“Sweeping things like [Paul Martin’s] Kelowna Accord don’t really solve problems,” said Tim Powers, a Conservative strategist who once served as an aboriginal affairs negotiator for the federal government. “He tries to see where immediate fixes can be made. Bigger, more laborious historical discussions don’t help resolve immediate issues on the ground, and he knows that.”
The Prime Minister has also been careful, said aboriginal activist and Senator Patrick Brazeau, because nobody wants another Oka crisis.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris YoungA year ago, around the time the Attawapiskat crisis made headlines, a former senior Harper government official echoed that very sentiment, likening abolishing the Indian Act to shooting an amoeba with an electron gun: “There are parts going everywhere — you’ve got women, chiefs, environmentalists, anti-oil sands people et cetera. Everybody has an opinion, and it could spiral out on him.”
But even though Mr. Harper has never shot the proverbial amoeba — he has never sought, and appears to have no intention of seeking, a revamp of the Indian Act in the way Jean Chr├ętien failed to accomplish — he is facing a situation that threatens to spiral out on him. Idle No More, coupled with Chief Spence’s separate but simultaneous hunger strike, has scooped up not just grassroots First Nations activists, but also a far broader cohort of human rights advocates, religious groups, environmentalists and even the chiefs the movement says it wants to keep at a distance.
THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris YoungIdle No More activists protest outside of the Ford plant Friday.
With myriad stakeholders vaguely suggesting “vital reforms,” there is no stated consensus on a way forward; there is nothing Ottawa can grasp hold of as an opportunity for change.
“There’s lots of people who have jumped on this bandwagon,” said a second former senior government official who once worked closely with the Prime Minister. “So is this really about a particular issue? Or is he just a convenient whipping boy for a bunch of grievances?”
Mr. Angus conceded the movement encompasses “all kinds of people with all kinds of agendas,” but he said that should not take away from the impetus behind the swelling protests.
I believe Harper, in his heart of hearts, believes that First Nations have to be part of the federation and part of the economy
“What’s driving it is a desire to see a leader or groups of leaders say, ‘Yes, we hear you, there are problems … We get it, so let’s try and find a way to fix it,’” he said.
Although Mr. Harper appeared somewhat impatient answering reporters’ questions on Friday about Idle No More and the hunger strike, he said “there is tremendous potential among our First Nations, and we want to realize that potential.”
And when he says those sorts of things, Mr. Jules believes him. In Mr. Harper, the former chief sees someone who has given the First Nations file “lots of thought.”
“I believe Harper, in his heart of hearts, believes that First Nations have to be part of the federation and part of the economy,” Mr. Jules said.
Ernie Crey, another First Nations leader who once worked in the federal government on aboriginal programming, said the Idle No More movement might have so far succeeded in sparking a national discussion, but he, like Mr. Jules, believes it lacks teeth and, specifically, specificity.
[W]hat they’re after is so vague — so up in the clouds — that nobody knows what they want
“I don’t take issue with people going to malls and drumming, singing or having round dances in an attempt to draw attention to problems in the aboriginal community,” said Mr. Crey, a fisheries advisor to the Sto:lo Tribal Council in B.C. “But what they’re after is so vague — so up in the clouds — that nobody knows what they want.”
The first former senior government official once said Mr. Harper “likes to be able to control all the exits,” but the Idle No More movement has not handed him any real entry points to begin with. And for Senator Brazeau, that is a sticking point.
“Having known [Mr. Harper] and spoken with him on this over the years, I know the Prime Minister cares deeply about aboriginal issues,” he said. “He would love for the chiefs to meet and come up with real solutions. But until they do that, it’s hard for the Prime Minister to have a discussion on what needs to be done. It has to come from the leaders.”
Emails to Idle No More spokespeople were not returned and Chief Spence could not be reached for comment. The Prime Minister’s Office did not respond to an interview request as of deadline Friday.
National Post
• Email: kcarlson@nationalpost.com | Twitter: KBlazeCarlson