The Harper Government™ really does seem to be all about change... Less change rattling around in our wallets, more change for MPAA and RIAA, omnibus changes to the law so those opposed don't even have time to read what they're opposed to.
I'm not really sure why the Natives were expecting any good news to come of their meeting with the prime minister, mind you, it's not like they don't deserve some good news. Especially when they are asking for things that are not unreasonable. Education, consultation on environment and land usage (and abuse in the name of profit), resolving unresolved land claims... And then there is the change to protected waters...
The news story about the natives claims Harper's hallmark is incremental change... They are incorrect in that assumption, change is only incremental and small until it benefits international profit machines, then the definition of "protected waters" jumps from 'anything you could float a canoe in' to 'Canada's busiest waterways, lakes, and oceans'... Canada is full of lakes, streams, creaks, and many other types of basins and flowing water, thousands of which are no longer federally protected.
Who gains? Corporations.
Who losses? Natives, and Canadians alike.
In fact, it was the sole remaining thing I considered as national pride... We have the most fresh (and drinkable without processing) water of any nation on the planet. If we aren't protecting that how long do you think it will take for the profit machine to destroy it? And for what?
The government is selling us out while believing it will somehow help us... Most of these corporations wanting access to our resources aren't Canadian... Sure, in the short term there will be jobs... Though lately it appears these companies are importing their own workers who claim we are denying their human rights, or suing the government over visa limits, workers rights, etc. Of course lawsuits against the government over environmental protection, fair trade, and other laws have been happening since the previous conservative government signed NAFTA. Canada keeps settling out of court on these cases meaning they have never even attempted to win. Which is likely why the environment suddenly doesn't matter any more. It isn't that enforcing these regulations is too expensive, it's that the government hasn't got the backbone to fight back against these greed-mongers...
How could the first nations expect to receive sovereign rights from a government that's unwilling to claim it's own sovereignty? Harper already revoked the progress Paul Martin made with the natives, and is busily revoking as many rights and freedoms of Canadians as he can find. I salute the efforts of the idle no more movement, but it's far likelier to become outlawed through hastily voted in laws than it is to change the stance of a government that's selling us all up the river which will soon be polluted by the stream.
Still I would like to wish the Natives luck in their continuing protests.