Friday, August 01, 2014

The Law Of Unintended Consequences


On the environment, Stephen Harper's record is appalling. Rick Smith summarizes the damage he has done:

The Fisheries Act no longer protects most fish.

The Navigable Waters Protection Act no longer protects most lakes and rivers.

The federal Environmental Assessment Act was repealed in its entirety and replaced with a law so cursory it might as well have been drafted on a cocktail napkin.

Canada remains the only country in the world that signed the Kyoto agreement on carbon pollution, only to withdraw from the treaty.

Even the impressive environmental achievements of previous Conservative governments have been dismantled, such as the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy

But ordering the audits of environmental charities may be the tipping point. And Smith speaks from experience:

I can tell you from personal experience (because I ran one of the country’s major environmental organizations for nearly 10 years) that, to a one, Canada’s environmental charities have always been extremely serious about complying with the letter and the spirit of CRA charitable rules. To have that sincere attempt thrown in its face by a tax agency that clearly isn’t playing straight has galvanized the environmental community in a way it never has been before.

Harper's attacks on his enemies have a way of boomeranging on him. And Smith believes that is precisely what is happening. Harper could well become a victim of his own war:

Of course it’s true that the obvious environmental impact of the Harper years will be measured in increased levels of pollution and real damage to precious land and waters. The less obvious and possibly longer lasting impact will be the creation of a country energized to decisively break with the failed environmental policies of the past in favour of a better future for us all.

It would be more than fitting if the prime minister sealed his own fate through the law of unintended consequences.


Askingtherightquestions said...

Mr. Smith makes a number of valid points Owen. But it is not only on the environment that Harper is likely to feel "blowback". How about his handling of veteran's issues? food safety? foreign aid?

Probably his greatest fail is his unexplained and obsequious support for Israel in the face of occupation and genocide. Principled stand? More appropriately a moral failure.

The Mound of Sound said...

I think Smith's take is wishful thinking, Owen. The sort of remedial change that he envisions would require that we somehow break the yoke of neo-liberalism that has infested all three major parties. Perhaps I'm just too cynical but I don't see any inkling of that spirit when I look on Trudeau the Lesser or Tommy Boy Mulcair.

On the climate change front we're being overtaken by events which, given our inaction, leaves us falling ever further behind. The longer we dally the harder we will find it to rebound and the harder the challenge (these days) the less likely we are to implement effective responses.

When challenges become fodder not for responses but for wedge politics it makes for poor results.

Owen Gray said...

Trudeau and Mulcair's timidity on what is happening in Gaza makes me think that -- perhaps -- we are doomed, Mound.

The boys with the big money control the agenda.

Owen Gray said...

There would be some justice in watching Harper get hoisted on his own petard, Asking.

But, as MoS points out, his fall may result in a change of name but not a change of policy.

Anonymous said...

What in the hell does it take, to get through to people. Harper is a fascist and a dictator since, he was Policy Chief for his Northern Foundation of 1989. Conrad Black was a member of Harpers Northern Foundation. I read, it was he who kept the lid on things until, Harper cheated his way into office.

Ex BC Liberal Premier Gordon Campbell works for Harper. Campbell, Harper, Nigel Wright and Conrad Black are all Bilderbergers. Conrad Black was on the steering committee of the Bilderberg Group.

The U.K. is Harpers favorite dumping ground, for his criminal degenerates. Gordon Campbell is already there and now, so is Nigel Wright. They are Harpers favorite henchmen.

Of course we all know, Trudeau and Mulcair are in on Harpers evil plots. Harper is a litany of, lies, deceit, thefts, corruption, dirty politics, dirty tactics and he cheats to win. And, our opposition are worse than useless. They are trying to have Canadians believe, they are helpless against that Na*i gangster Harper. If they are that damned useless, we should not be paying their wages.

Mulcair and Trudeau can do nothing about the monster Harper. Convince me.

Owen Gray said...

Right now, things are looking kind of bleak, Anon.

thwap said...

harper is scum and his supporters either ignoramuses or devils.

Owen Gray said...

It would be heartening to know that their numbers are on the decline, thwap.

mogs moglio said...

@ anon 2:31 PM

We know we know, now what do we do? I have witnessed the regime change in the Excited States of America Bush to ----> Obama any real change there? No it continued business and politics as usual same as under the Bush regime.

We in the 'so-called western free world' are being hoodwinked to think our vote makes a difference, it does not i.e. different people doing the same master-plan.

The rich get richer at the expense of the rest of us and the environment we all lose. The animals the plants and trees and the aquatics are first on the extinction list.

What to do?

get off the system quit spending your hard labor in it or your $ plant a garden and live off the good earth and soon enough if many of us do this the rich who think they are 'Masters of the Universe' will wither and die without us.

Here is who Stephen Justin and Thomas work for and more:

In Canada:

These are the men that pull Trudeau Mulcair and Harpers strings. Know thy enemy.

Owen Gray said...

The corporate juggernaut continues, Mogs.