Red Herring Headlines

Following Julie Payette’s resignation, the “non-partisan” CBC had hosts, pundits and Opposition Party guests heap scorn on Justin Trudeau’s initial ad hoc selection of her as Governor General. In print media. Fraser, Fife, et al. went all Opinion Piece proselytizing on how none of this would have happened under Harper.

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole intoned:  “Considering the problems with his last appointment … the Prime Minister should consult opposition parties.” The NDP’s Jagmeet Singh bemoaned the Liberal’s lack of good judgement: “This is all sad, but it’s so Justin Trudeau’s style,” he said. “He thinks that he knows better than anybody else, than the special committee created by the Conservatives. But we were right at that time. We made the right decision, he did the wrong decision and unfortunately, today we paid a price for this mess.”

Hindsight is a wonderful gift, Mr. Singh, but so is history. Back in 2017 when Julie Payette was nominated to the position of Governor General by Justin Trudeau, then NDP leader Thomas Mulcair announced: “On behalf of the New Democratic Party and Canadians across this country, I applaud the appointment of Julie Payette as the next Governor General of Canada. Ms. Payette is a superb choice as she embodies some of the very best qualities of Canada.” Nothing but the best for the NDP, Jagmeet,

Similarly, then Conservative leader Andrew Scheer proclaimed, “As a scientist, a former chief astronaut for the (Canadian Space Agency), and a leading advocate for Canadian ingenuity around the world, Ms. Payette will be well-suited to play a leadership role in Canada as the next Governor General,”  adding that his party has full confidence in her.

The Canadian Space Agency declared: “Ms. Payette has served the Canadian Space Agency and her country exceptionally well, both on the ground and in space for over two decades. Throughout her career as an astronaut, she was a tireless ambassador for science and technology. Ms. Payette visited schools across the country, encouraging young Canadians to view science as a means to contribute to society and to our planet. As a lifelong defender of the arts, she will be in a unique position to communicate her passion for music and science to the next generation of Canadians.”

 Well, well, well. Turns out that at the time the Conservative and NDP Opposition Parties gave their full confidence for Trudeau’s superb choice of Julie Payette as Canada’s Governor General with nary a whisper of the need to invoke the Harper regime’s Advisory Committee on Vice-Regal Appointments to assist the  Liberal minority government in its selection process.

O’Toole and Singh have clearly established themselves as opportunistic hypocrites. Perhaps a Liberal appointed non-partisan Committee for the Opposition Party Leadership Appointments would create a more robust selection process for the future. You know, to ensure that we have full confidence in the superb choices made for future NDP and Conservative leaders. The current batch have been weighed, have been measured, and have been found wanting.

The way I see it.

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Skid Crease, Caledon

*images from enwikepedia.com and istockpohoto.com

The Keystone Cops – Trumpism in Canada

 The Keystone XL Pipeline has been dead for some time now. It died under Obama. It died under Nebraska and Montana court orders. It got briefly revived under Trump, It was finally, officially confirmed deceased by the 46th President of the United States, Joseph R. Biden. The Keystone XL Pipeline is dead.

We who are seeking a sustainable energy economy for Canada do not mourn, but the wailing and weeping from Trump wannabe politicians in Canada is deafening, No sooner had Biden cancelled Keystone, than the Republican Conservative horde north of the border, led by O’Toole, Kenney and Ford, took to the airwaves predicting job loss armageddon and the death of the Big Oil corporations.

Let us remember that the Keystone XL Pipeline was NEVER a Canadian dream. It was a business deal cooked up in Calgary between Alberta and Trans Canada Corporation (a private energy company) back in 2008 when Stephen Harper was Prime Minister. Trans Canada Corporation, now known as TC Energy, got it’s Keystone XL Pipeline deal rubber stamped by Harper’s hand-picked corporate National Energy Board.

Fortunately, a marriage made in the deep pits of the tar sands at a time when oil prices were booming high was doomed to failure when the bust came. From environmental studies that showed the potential for disastrous pollution problems to cultural protests over the route selected through the States, Keystone became an investors’ nightmare.

The oily Republican Conservative horde in Canada will no doubt use the cancellation of Keystone XL to attack PM Trudeau. They will blame the Liberals for the loss of non-existent jobs in a  declining and rapidly imploding resource extraction industry whose impending death is as predictable as the demise of the pipeline. Canada needs a sustainable energy sector, not an unsustainable cabal of profiteering fossil fools.

The US just deposed a lying dictator – we don’t need the same kind of leadership in Canada. O’Toole and his provincial partners would be well advised to sit down, educate themselves on the energy needs of the 21st Century, and start planning for jobs and economic security in the new renewable, sustainable energy economy.

Ontario’s Doug Ford is so confused over the issue that he thought for a moment that he was a federal leader who could advise newly elected President Biden to reverse his decision. Mr. Ford, you are a provincial Premier, not a Prime Minister. President Biden will be calling Prime Minister Trudeau on Friday, not you. That’ll do, Doug. That’ll do.

The Keystone XL Pipeline is dead. Long live a sustainable energy sector.

The way I see it.

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Skid Crease, Caledon

*image from wxow.com

 

Ford and Phillips: hypocrisy loves company

Canada has clear coronavirus health guidelines. Ontario has clear coronavirus health guidelines. All we need is for people to follow them in order to get this pandemic under control for a healthier 2021 and beyond.  We often look to our leaders for inspiration. In Canada’s case, our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, has walked the talk from day one. Alas, we cannot say the same for Ontario.

At a time when front line health care staff are taxed to the maximum, it would seem that the least we could do would be to follow the basic guidelines; no non-essential travel, stay in your bubble, avoid indoor crowds, mask, stay 2 m apart and wash our hands.

Alas, neither our Premier, Doug Ford, nor some of his Conservative cabal, like Finance Minister Rod Phillips, seem capable of following those simple rules. Now, wet-behind-the political-ears rookie Sam Oosterhoff may have an excuse for his rules violating crowded evangelical restaurant party, but there is NO EXCUSE for seasoned politicians like Ford and Phillips. These were clear cases of arrogant entitlement.

At least Phillips, still on a rules violating non-essential travel vacation to St, Barts with his wife, can say he was “just following the leader.” Ford has twice violated Ontario’s travel and bubble restrictions by his May visit to his cottage to “check on the water pipes” and his family dinner get-together for Easter.

After the Ford Government shut down Queen’s Park for an extended December to February break in the middle of a global pandemic, Phillips thought it was a good time to skip the country for a little non-essential travel. For the second time.

And the icing on the Christmas cake was the pre-recorded fireside message that Phillip’s arranged to have Tweeted to his constituents making it appear that he was still home for the holidays. The message should have said, “As you all make sacrifices this #Christmas, remember that some of our fellow citizens won’t even be home for Christmas dinner over Zoom. Like me. I’ll be soaking up the sun in St. Barts while thousands of front-line heroes will be looking out for you. Ho, Ho, Ho!” Gee Rod, turns out you’re a Dick.

Also turns out that Mr. Phillips let Mr. Ford know about his trip “about two weeks ago” which would have meant that the Premier knew about Rod’s illicit vacation at the time that parliament was dissolved on December10th for a two month break in the middle of a pandemic. And Doug kept it quiet until the proverbial excrement hit the fan. So, dear readers, who wins first place?

Yeppers, two peas in a hypocritical pod in the middle of their “do as I say, not as I do” sycophantic conservative goober patch. 2022 can’t come soon enough.

The way I see it.

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Skid Crease, Caledon

* image from cp24.com

Act Locally

The old adage still holds true for me, and like in The Polar Express, the silver bell still rings for all those who believe:

Think Globally, Act Locally, Care Personally

During this time of global pandemic and local lockdowns it is particularly important to keep that saying in mind. Supporting our local health care workers by wearing a mask, and staying socially distant and washing our hands is not too much to ask of us. Shopping locally to support our small businesses and staying home to protect our family bubbles is simple enough to do. Staying connected to local and global political events online still allows us to express our voice.

This morning, December 17, 2020, the Region of Peel is meeting to discuss a Motion to reduce Caledon’s seats at Peel to 3 and increase Brampton’s voice by 2. In my humble opinion, this would be disastrous for Caledon. The Motion was rushed in at a time of lockdown during a global pandemic and stretched the credibility of due democratic process. We were given short time as citizens to respond, but by staying tuned in to local events we were able to get our concerns on record through the Peel Clerk.That’s about the only action we could take legally.

The desire of angry townsfolk to tar and feather the Regional Councillor who betrayed Caledon, and ride her out of town on a rail would probably result in our concerned citizens getting arrested, so we may have to wait for Karma. And Karma knows.

As for local business – I continue to support Forster’s Book Garden as my pet project. Donna and Paul and Stirling continue to be able to find me any book I need, whether it be a global exploration of “Dark Money” or a local book on “Caledon Hikes” or going second-hand for “The Wolf King” -a long lost childhood favourite – Donna and Paul can find it all.

When we act with respect locally, it has a global impact. We only really change the world by one random act of kindness at a time through which we change ourselves. It’s like the old story my Dad told me about the little boy who wanted to play ball with his very busy dad. The father gave the boy a torn up map of the world and said “when you put it back together, I’ll take a break and we can play,” Within minutes the boy was back with the map all taped together. The father was astonished. “How did you do that so quickly, son?”

The boy smiled and tossed his dad the ball. “It was easy, on the other side of the map there was a big picture of a man. When I put the man back together, the whole world fell into place.”

The way I see it.

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Skid Crease, Caledon

 

* images from silvercity.com and dreamscapes.com

The Cornered Rat

Cyber Security Chief Chris Krebs calls US elections “safe and secure” … Trump angry –  fires Chris.

Georgia officials count and recount and recount – Biden wins, Trump angry … attacks Georgia.

William Barr says no sign of fraud in elections … Trump angry … Barr is gone as AG.

Supreme Court tosses Trump’s Texas lawsuit … Trump angry … attacks Supreme Court.

Electoral College confirms Biden as President-elect … Trump angry … attacks College.

Mitch McConnell finally acknowledges Biden victory … Trump angry … attacks Mitch.

In case anyone missed it, there is a clear pattern here. Yes, cornered rats are dangerous.

The way I see it.

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Skid Crease, Caledon

*image from imgflip.com