Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Speech You'll Never Hear

The evidence keeps piling up. When Hurricane Sandy tore up the Jersey Shore and flooded New York City, Americans started talking about climate change. But when Calgary was inundated last month, Jason Kenny called it a "once in a century event," claiming that everybody cleaned up and went about their business the last time Calgary was flooded, in 1892. When Toronto's subway stations were under water last month, you would think that Stephen Harper -- whose real home town is Toronto -- would have taken note.

Edward Greenspan writes, in the Toronto Star, that the event should have prompted a speech from Harper, which would have sounded something like this:

“Friends, while the cause of a single extreme weather event is unknowable, their greater frequency is irrefutable. Federal scientists are right: there is something fundamental happening out there, and Canada both contributes to the problem and suffers from the consequences.
 “Thus I want to reach out today to four groups in particular: government scientists, who will once again be allowed to speak freely; President Obama, who has reasonably challenged us to craft a Keystone proposal that ‘does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution’; the young people of Canada, starting with my children Ben and Rachel, who, while they don’t yet vote, deserve a government obsessed with a better future; and, finally, the oil industry based in my flood-ravaged hometown to whom I want to invoke a famously wise Conservative nostrum: ‘Short-term pain for long-term gain.’
 “Friends, our current trajectory is unsustainable. Let’s get on a new one.”

Barack Obama has made the pivot. Bur Harper hasn't, because he's sold his soul to Big Oil. He has pinned his future  -- and the country's future -- on black goo.

No, there will be no such speech.


bcwaterboy said...

Quite frankly Owen, I wouldn't want to hear such a speech that would ring ever so more hollow than his nonsense about boosting the economy and creating jobs. He is focused solely on consolidating power and maximizing profits in one sector of the economy. As with economics, environmental science would put this naked emperor out of his league.

Owen Gray said...

I agree, waterboy. The words would ring hallow -- like his apology to Canada's native peoples.

Anonymous said...

The Reform party, and Harper, came into existence with oil money, so I doubt we will hear much about climate change from Harper. And even if he said the words, we wouldn't see much, if any, action.

There is nothing stopping Mulcair or Trudeau from making such a speech though, is there?

Owen Gray said...

Exactly, Anon. Mulcair has talked about "Dutch disease." But neither he nor Trudeau have addressed the problem of climate change.

Lorne said...

Reading this imaginary speech, Owen, makes all of us achingly aware of the vacuum of leadership in our political parties today. Would it were otherwise!

Owen Gray said...

To use a Biblical allusion, Lorne, it's like Pontius Pilate washing his hands.

Anonymous said...

When it comes to Harper? His greed, power and glory, trumps common sense every time.

Harper has failed Canada miserably, in every possible way, to destroy this country. Everything about Harper is all about lies, deceit, and corruption. Harper's economic and job action plans are where?

Seems Harper has a very shady political past. Harper's past shows in everything he does and, does not do. Harper is certainly a Dictator and a control freak.

Owen Gray said...

And the longer he manages to maintain his position, Anon, the more difficult it is going to be to get the country out of the mess it is in.