Pierre Poilievre has been a professional politician all his life. It's the only job he's ever done.
He's a feral politico if ever there was one, with a well honed survival instinct.
So it's hard to understand how he could have made such a potentially catastrophic mistake as thinking he could get away with ignoring the issue of climate change.
Even though it's the biggest issue we face.
Even as the planet burns.
Poilievre gambled on the ignorance and greed of many Canadians, he lost, and now he's going to get burned.
For what's happening in the U.K. and in Europe has made climate change too big, too uncomfortable and too dangerous to ignore.
Sweltering temperatures hit much of Western Europe on Tuesday as a ferocious heatwave headed north.
The UK hit its highest ever temperature of 40.2C, according to provisional Met Office figures, and forecasters warned temperatures were still climbing.
Extreme heat warnings were issued in France and record July temperatures were reported in the Netherlands.
Deadly wildfires in France, Portugal, Spain and Greece have forced thousands of people to evacuate their homes.
It's a heat apocalypse.
And in the UK where so few people have air conditioning, thousands could die. Roads and runways are melting, rail tracks are warping, many fires are burning even in London.
The heat is so intense keeping even the fittest from collapsing is quite a challenge...
And climate activists are already taking aim at the country's right wing media.
Extinction Rebellion protesters have smashed windows at the London headquarters of Rupert Murdoch’s media company, in protest at his outlets’ coverage of the climate crisis.
A spokesperson said: “Instead of warning readers of the increased risks from such heatwaves as the climate crisis intensifies, the Sun chose to cover their front pages in images of women in bikinis, beachgoers and happy toddlers with ice-creams.”
As they soon will here, for downplaying the threat of climate change to protect our oil industry.
And all of that will make it really hard for Poilievre to keep on demanding that the carbon tax be "axed."
When it's the best tool we have to fight climate change.
And the horrifying truth is it can only get worse.
When our children are our age, they will yearn for a summer as “cool” as 2022, because long before the century’s end, 40C-plus heat will be nothing to write home about in the climate-mangled world they inherit.
The brutal truth is that dodging dangerous, all-pervasive, climate breakdown is now practically impossible.
And of course, it could happen here.
In fact it already has, in B.C. last year, where about 500 people died in a so called Heat Dome.
And where wildfires are a growing threat to many communities.
If Poilievre hadn't made such a big deal about "axing the tax" he might have been able to fudge his way out of this emergency.
But he made it a campaign slogan, so now whatever he says about the tax he can only lose. He fell into the carbon tax trap.
And he will learn the hard way that climate change can no longer be ignored.
And he will be forced to run for his life like this Spanish farmer...
Poilievre is running away from a lot of things these days.
The Bitcoin balloon that blew up in his face. His sinister buddies in the trucker terrorist movement. His brutish record as a stooge in the Harper regime.
But he can't get away from climate change, and it will be the issue that eats him alive...
P.S: I got a couple of texts from friends in England announcing that they are planning to move to Canada. But I told them not to bother. Where I live it was 35 degrees this afternoon, and felt like 42. So we’re all in this together…
O'Toole tried to finesse the climate issue, but his lame low carbon savings plan was such obvious BS that voters weren't fooled. But the fact that he had a climate plan at all outraged the party's base in the tar sands and he soon found himself out of a job. As you say, Poilievre is a career politician with an instinct for survival. He won't make the same mistake. He'd sooner go up in flames like the wicker man.
We need a pipeline to transfer the heat.
Although climate change has become such a 1000 pieces puzzle (or more), should it be Justin Trudeau's responsibility or is it the provinces. As a liberal who made door to door for my MP, I had a man confront me with saying that he will not vote for Justin Trudeau, because he will not be able to solve the climate crisis. That was 4 years ago but back then in Quebec, it can be scorching hot at that time. And for people all around us, a vote for Trudeau in next elections is nothing but business as usual and nothing will be advancing. And that's in spite of some progress, even if it's not in my favourite field of weather and storms. But then again, for living in the Longueuil suburd where there were no floods, but some strong storm winds that did broke traffic lights, how to be convinced that things will be better under Trudeau than under the NDP or the Greens?
Sometimes I wonder if my country would take climate more seriously if we used normal measurements like the rest of the world (and the scientific community), instead of stubbornly clinging to imperial because metric is woke communism and critical race theory. Tell many of my fellow Americans that it's going to be "35 or 40" in Canada tomorrow, and they'll react: see, climate change is a hoax, because Canada is always cold and Canadians ride snowmobiles to work. The Lytton fires last year were actually covered on our major-network evening news. People in my family were shocked that wildfires happen up there because, well, doesn't the snow extinguish it? My aunt who watches Fox is concerned that the pope will catch pneumonia on his visit, and prays that he bundle up. She also hopes Trudeau repents from communism. But I digress.
What's so awful about Skippy (besides, well, everything) is that the voters he's courting are Canadians who believe that sort of nonsense, despite having lived in Canada all their lives. Now, IF climate change is happening, of course, it's either a natural cycle of the earth's proximity to the sun (which travels around the earth, of course); or it's engineered by the WEF (and only Elon Musk can fix it by tweeting at the flames and floods); or Gerald Butts controls the CBC and directs them to lie because he hates old-stock Albertans; or it's God's wrath for the satanic Marxist Trudeau extending the umbrella of government to protect Muslims and gays and the French and blah blah blah.
Skippy is playing to, and weaponizing, ignorance. Not to mention how his bitcoin scam is one of the most resource-intensive projects known to mankind. But just like his orange mentor, he loves the poorly educated. My hope is that even though this problem seems to be creeping north, that the bulk of Canadians still aren't as stupid as so many of my fellow Americans to fall for it. Otherwise, to quote George Carlin: "The planet will be fine, but the people are completely fucked."
Hi anon@5:21 PM... I fear you're right. I don't see any willingness to compromise, even on an issue so critical to our survival. Poilievre's anti-carbon tax rant makes absolutely no sense, but it has become the rallying cry of the Cons, and he's too cowardly to take on their ugly base.
Also, and it pains me to say this, a lot of Canadians are still too apathetic to lift a finger to help younger Canadians fight for the world they will inherit. So yes, it's going to take lot of Burning Men to wake this country up...
Hi Steve....A pipeline to transfer the heat that more pipelines would make even worse? This country needs to realize that climate change is the biggest challenge we face, and use it as a weapon to bury the Cons, before it's too late...
Hi Myworld1916....It should really be quite simple. Justin Trudeau has done more to fight climate change that any Prime Minister before him. Period. While all the Cons and most Premiers have done is throw obstacles in his way, because they would put our precious tar sands before the lives of ordinary Canadians. Go to the Liberal website and I'm sure you will find a list of all they have done to fight climate change. And help get the message out before it's too late...
Hi Jackie...I must say I'm depressed at how so many Canadians seem indifferent to what has been happening in Europe. As I said in my post it felt like 42 degrees today, and I have never experienced such heat ever before, and could only imagine what it must have been like for the old and the vulnerable in Britain where they are totally unprepared for what's coming. Luckily my family lives in the north of Scotland and the heatwave came up short of Edinburgh. But my mother said she won't be using the oven until the heat emergency is over, so the fear is very real. My only consolation is that I truly believe that the Cons will pay a huge price for their climate change denial, while Trudeau will benefit from all he has done to put a price on carbon, and all he is doing to try to give us a greener future. No wonder the oil barons are funding such things as the terrorist convoy, and doing all they can to bring him down. But they must not succeed or we are truly doomed....
I’m worried we won’t be able to produce enough electricity to provide air conditioning even to the vulnerable.
I live in the Okanagan, where it's been crazy warm these last few years. Almost every summer for the last five years we've been almost completely smoked out for the month of August.
As for air conditioning, the government should be pushing support for solar panels on houses and businesses. Think of how much power could be generated by covering the roof of a Walmart, Superstore, or Canadian Tire in solar panels. It'd really cut down on the power requirements to cool those large buildings during a heatwave.
A coworker of mine installed solar panels on her home a few years ago, and it cut her power bill to zero for most months of the year. She also bought an electric vehicle which can be charged at home. It'll take about 10-12 years for the energy savings to pay off the cost of the solar panels (less if the price of fuel stay sky-high), but that's the kind of forward, long term thinking that's needed to solve these kinds of issues.
Hi anon@8:58 PM....I share your concern. I am very worried about many residents in long term care centers who I am told are being kept cool by wet towels, which is clearly inadequate. Although, when I called an LTC where a friend's granny lives I was told that they now have air-conditioning which is a sign of progress. But I am also concerned about others who live in their own homes and have air conditioning. For I fear that really hot days could cause generating stations to go down and leave people living alone helpless and in danger of dying. We need to fight the causes of climate change, but we also need an adaptation plan to get help to those who need it...
Hi anon@12:26...I completely agree with you. Solar panels and wind turbines are two great ways to harness the power of nature, and heat and cool our homes without making the climate situation worse. I know we can do it, what's missing is the will and the imagination to do it. We can't replace fossil fuels overnight, but by making less essential we will get to a greener world eventually...
@ Jackie Blue 9:51 PM
Totally OT : A friend of mine was visiting his parents in Windsor, Ontario. While sitting half-comatose over his first coffee of the day the radio announcer reported that it was 30 degrees. He looked out at the snowbanks in amazement. Oh, Detroit station!
Still I have seen the claim that Canada is one of the few countries in the world where one can build a 30 metre fence that is 6 feet high.
I don't know that we're indifferent so much as powerless. I walk to nearly everything I can, my friends all drive hybrids or electric or lower-emission vehicles and I watch my red meat consumption as well. Our building was rebuilt after a fire loss to be eco-energetic. We don't allow central air conditioning at all. I do live in QC though and this province is run by a massive incompetent.
It is time, high time, that Minister Guilbault drop the hammer on the oil industry. Lower your emissions or pay some massive, massive taxes. Clean up the oil wells or pay massive, massive taxes. Enough playing nice.
My sincerest hope is that Catherine McKenney gets elected here in Ottawa ("here" being relative in this case as I can walk to Ottawa from my condo...) because she's got a plan to refurbish all the houses, the grid, everything to help the National Capital Region become less of a fire trap.
Don't count on CPC to do the right thing..they are just going to let it burn as long as they can make money, and that's why they cannot be allowed to form a majority.
Hi Pierre...I am impressed by your attempts to live an eco-friendly life. I try to do the same, although I am little lax on red meat consumption. Uggh. But I agree with you, it's time to stop playing nice with the oil industry. I recently read that they are now claiming that they can't reduce emissions without reducing production after telling the government it was no problem. They are taking us for fools, and seem to think they can go pumping out their tarry sludge forever. If it wasn't for Justin Trudeau and the Liberals we would be nowhere on the climate change front. And as you point out, if the Convoy Party ever formed a government they would undo all the good that has been done, and so must never form a government...
Close the airport, provide electric magic powered trains to Pearson and Hamilton. The idea that a city of 6 million should suck jet fumes forever is elitist.
Hi Steve....I think it's a little too late to close down the airport, but the number of flights needs to be regulated. And there is a dedicated shuttle train that runs between Union station and Pearson. So a happy equilibrium can be worked out...
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