U.S. President Joe Biden just announced a ban on imported Russian oil into his country. Is it the right thing to do? This latest sanction is to show support for Ukraine and disdain for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Will Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau follow suit?
Global Oil Reserves
Like it or not, crude oil is (currently) the main source of energy around the world. Until that changes (if it ever changes) oil reserves are a huge commodity. Which countries have the most oil reserves? This list from World Population Review shows the current (2022 data) facts…
These facts are deceiving, however. For example, Venezuela’s oil is predominantly offshore so fairly difficult to access. Saudi Arabia’s oil, on the other hand, is located inland and close to the land surface. Crude oil reserves are based not only on quantity but how readily accessible the reserves are with current technology. Regardless, you can see the general position of countries within this list of proven oil reserves. Canada is near the top, the USA is below number ten.
Oil Imports and Exports
So, from this I’m gathering Biden’s sanction banning imported Russian oil won’t have much of an impact on Russia. According to EIA the USA imports most of its oil from Canada:
Canada remained the largest exporter of total petroleum to the United States in December; exporting 4.8 million b/d. The second largest exporter of total petroleum was Mexico with 645,000 b/d.
EIA, December 2021
Canada also imports very little oil from Russia, so an imported oil sanction by Trudeau would be more symbolic (like Biden’s) than catastrophic for Putin and Russia. It might poke the bear though.
Canada sits at the top of the list of crude oil importers (predominantly from Saudi Arabia), according to the EIA:
While one of Canada’s biggest exports is, you guessed it, crude oil. This data is from Investopedia:
Are you confused yet? Canada is at the top of the list for its impressive oil reserves, something a cold-weather country should aim to be. We also sit at the top of the exporting of oil list, which economically is great. Isn’t it? But wait, we are also at the top of the imported oil list. How is that economical? Granted, I’m no economist, but I did excel in accounting 101. I am confused, not to mention annoyed and frustrated.
Using Canadian Oil Instead of Imported Oil?
This topic has come up before with Trudeau’sresistance to approving pipelines between the oil reserves in the west for use in the eastern provinces. (Most) Canadians would prefer to use the oil we have, rather than depend on foreign countries for their supply. The Russian invasion of Ukraine just emphasizes this opinion.
The National Post has a great but sad explanation:
So proud is the Trudeau government of its action on environmental stewardship and climate change that it essentially does the Saudis’ dirty work for them. By tightening the screws on domestic Canadian production while seeing an increase in Saudi-originating imports we are helping to accelerate the rate of our own energy-sector’s decline.
The Canadian pipelines debate has been discussed from coast to coast for several years now. Rumours and speculation of who supports them and who is holding them back (and why) are rampant. Apparently, these pipelines that transport climate-changing fossil fuels are financially lucrative, job-producing investments elsewhere in the world, but not in Canada.
Pierre Poilievre takes Mark Carney to Task
I heard this exchange recently; I personally love how perseverant Poilievre is on the basic question regarding the pipelines. Do you support them or don’t you? The Canadian pipelines I mean, not the foreign ones. You could also interpret this as do you support improving the Canadian economy or is the economy of other countries more important?
Who is Mark Carney and What does he Think of Canadian Pipelines?
On his resume, Mark Carney has an impressive list of accomplishments and accolades. Governor of the Bank of Canada as well as the Bank of England, several international offices of Goldman Sachs, Canada’s department of finance, the financial stability board (FSB) of G20 countries, and most recently Brookfield Asset Management.
While Governor of the Bank of England, Carney was the chief opponent of Brexit. He tried to convince everyone that the UK economy would suffer a negative impact.
More recently (spring 2021) Carney scrambled to defend Brookfield Asset Management’s significant holdings of “carbon neutral” fossil fuels. In short, he manipulated his accounting to downplay (hide) a carbon footprint of 5,200 tons of carbon dioxide. What does carbon neutral mean to you? I admittedly don’t know that much, but I’m willing to bet that many tons of carbon dioxide are nowhere near neutral.
Hearing him dithering in this video, he (unflatteringly) sounds like his Liberal boss, our Prime Minister. Do as I say, not as I do comes to mind.
Who is Pierre Poilievre and What is his Stance?
Well, his opinion and support or loyalty are much more obvious. This video and other forms of social media display his stance on crucial issues. Considered the political opposition’s bulldog to many,Pierre Poilievre is a Conservative member of parliament (MP) representing the Carleton suburb of Ottawa. With a Bachelor of Arts and some commerce courses under his belt, his own modest description of himself says it all:
“a political junkie with a passion for public debating and a special interest in international relations”
Perhaps Poilievre is not as polished or successful (career-wise) as Mark Carney. Yet. He (Pierre) is definitely more articulate and fun to listen to. His debating skills are legendary within the house of commons. I, for one, love his doggedness. Is that a word? Maybe perseverent is better.
As Shadow Minister of Finance, it is, appropriately, his job to hold our Finance Minister (and Deputy Prime Minister) Chrystia Freeland accountable. Recently though, Poilievre announced a higher ambition, with intentions of running for the Conservative leadership, en route to the goal of becoming our next Prime Minister. If a drama teacher can do it, a self-acclaimed political junkie and well-spoken, if somewhat annoying, bulldog can too. The level of annoyance depends purely on which side of the debate you represent. He is one of those guys you want on your team instead of playing against him.
If you don’t yet know of Pierre Poilievre, you will soon.
Protesters in the Freedom Convoy have occupied downtown Ottawa for the fourth day now. Hopefully, some of us heard theintended message. Most Canadians are ready to reopen the country. As feared though, the ugliness of the bandwagon radicals compromised the peaceful and (somewhat) reasonable, original platform.
Doug Ford, the Premier of Ontario has issued the following statement:
The right to peaceful protest is core to our Canadian identity. I was extremely disturbed, however, to see some individuals desecrate our most sacred monuments and wave swastikas and other symbols of hate and intolerance this weekend. That has no place in Ontario or Canada. Not now. Not ever.
Downtown Businesses and Residents
The problem is, those not so enamoured with the protest have had their freedom compromised too.
Like everyone else in Ontario, (other provinces have different schedules) Ottawa’s businesses were eagerly anticipating the reopening of their businesses yesterday, January 31. Small businesses have taken the brunt of pandemic restrictions, some forced to close altogether.
The large presence within the downtown core of protesters has forced businesses to delay their re-opening. Non-compliant protesters who refuse to wear masks on the premises are impacting hotels too.
Residents in the area suffer the incoveniences. Obnoxiously loud horns, the smell of diesel fuel permeating the area, as well as reports of violence and vandalism have them frustrated and angry. The unmitigated stress of the situation helped compromise the platform.
Violence and Disrespect
There have been reports and signs that there has been some violence and disrespect during the protest. Unfortunately, it has been difficult to differentiate between truth and manufactured propaganda. Blatantly skewed media attention is to blame there.
For example, an ambulance pelted with rocks, and an attendant bombarded with racial slurs as he exited his vehicle to examine the damage is unacceptable.
Misinformation is Dangerous
Another report said that a patient within an ambulance died as a result of delayed response time due to protest-induced traffic congestion. Social media quickly disputed this as “not true” however.
Other reports say the protests have been peaceful and respectful, mostly by those in attendance though. Protesters themselves removed the (reportedly) single confederate flag and individual Nazi symbol. To listen to the media attention though those two disrespectful symbols outnumbered the Canadian flags by far.
Yet another rumour reports that Trudeau himself hired those committing the violence, abuse, disrespect, vandalism etc to discredit the movement. Another says that“the Russians” are fueling the protest. Really?
Our prime minister, (supposedly) isolating with a positive covid test, has refused to address the protesters or their message. Mixed messages and rumours are circulating about that as well. Some say he is in hiding to avoid the “fringe group” he claimed the protesters represented.
Quite the variation in interpretations and messages wouldn’t you say?
Unfortunately, bad reporting and misinformation on social media can be as destructive as physical threats, particularly for the platform in question.
The truckers started the national protest when Justin Trudeau suddenly removed the vaccine exemption for truckers. Most truckers have received their vaccinations. This mandate was the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back. Individual provinces govern most pandemic restrictions though. Organizers did not plan the protest well. That’s just my humble opinion. Instead, it was an emotional, knee jerk reaction of Covid-stressed, bored organizers and their followers.
The passionate message of Canadians tired and frustrated with pandemic restrictions took on a life of its own as the Freedom Convoy moved across Canada. From coast to coast in fact. In trucks and on foot. Spectators galore showed up to support the truckers along the way. Unfortunately, so did the hate-spewing, disrespectful small interest groups and radicals.
The bad apples have ruined the barrel. Did organizers encourage the bad apples? Or did someone plant them to spoil the effect? Who knows? The bottom line? A compromised platform, well-intended or not.
It is time to move on! My personal belief is that Canadians must use their democratic right to vote to voice their non-confidence in a government. Protests never accomplish much.
What a waste of time and money. Six hundred million dollars spent to end up with the same results. Another Liberal minority government. Gunning for a majority of the votes, Trudeau called an early election. His timing was suspect (selfish) and voters were frustrated. After all, we are in the fourth wave of a pandemic and the middle of the crisis in Afghanistan to boot. Although people were ticked off at him for the timing, obviously they were not ticked off enough. Or, not enough voters were ticked off. Whatever the reason, Canada voted for another Liberal minority.
A Facebook post sums it up well:
“could this election not have been an email?”
Who Wins When Canada Votes for Another Liberal Minority Government?
I’m not sure who benefits when Canada votes again for a Liberal minority government. Justin Trudeau can pretend he won and is happy with the results, but just a short while ago he complained that he cannot successfully run the country with a minority government. That was his excuse for calling the election, the wish for a majority.
So what, he can successfully run the country now? His drama classes are serving him well, he has the ability to spin the results any way he wishes to.
That is easier to visualize. Those just starting out in the workforce stand to lose big time. They will never be able to afford a home and the luxuries we older folk were able to save for. The taxes to pay down the country’s debt and the rapidly escalating rate of inflation will mean saving will be next to impossible. Living paycheck to paycheck will become more commonplace.
As a rich man, born with a golden spoon in his mouth, Trudeau spends money like there’s no tomorrow. Budgets are foreign to him, and balance themselves in his world. A billion dollars here and there means absolutely nothing to him. That’s because it’s not his own money he is spending. As my husband used to preach to our sons when they were younger, “the government doesn’t have any money, they spend our (hard earned/saved) money!”
Although I am disappointed in the (lack of new) results, as a retiree I am at the stage in life where I have earned a pension, savings and a mortgage-free home. It’s not my generation that will lose (not as much anyway) from the massive debt already incurred (and sure to grow) by the Liberal government, but the next one and the one after that. My children and grandchildren, and yours too, will be the victims as Canada votes this Liberal minority in again.
Also disappointed and disillusioned (I’m sure) are those younger than I, perhaps with young children of their own, who had decided they want a change from the financial mess our country is in. Unfortunately, voting for one of the parties that did/do not have the numbers to win an election only splits the vote away from the Conservatives, the only party that could (mathematically) have beat Trudeau and his Liberals. That concept (always) seems to be misunderstood and is a bitter pill to swallow when your wish for change backfires.
We are now stuck with (at least) eighteen more months of rising federal (and personal) debt, increasing taxes and so on. The exorbitant price of gas and the steady increase in the cost of groceries will only get worse.
Are you happy and satisfied with the results? Or frustrated, angry, or indifferent? I for one cannot wait until Canada votes again. Hopefully with different results.
Vaccines have eradicated many diseases in Canada that are still prevalent in other countries around the world.
There’s a good reason for that; science has proven that vaccines work.
We should be proud of that accomplishment and go the extra mile to protect it and our compliant citizens. For some reason our country is more concerned about the cultural rights or beliefs of everyone except our own citizens.
We have become all inclusive to an extreme, risking the safety and health of our own, especially those most vulnerable.
If not non-existent and unavailable, exemptions should be much stricter, for valid (proven) medical reasons only.
A simple immigration rule or federal law could enforce the no exemption/exception. No vaccines, no entry into the country.
Vaccine exemptions should also be banned in schools. Most of us must have our children vaccinated before they attend school. No proof of vaccination means no school attendance…simple, no exceptions or exemptions.
The practice of dumping raw sewage into waterways is archaic and should not be acceptable in civilized countries, including Canada. Why do we continue to allow this? Learn about bill C269 and how it should help clean up the problem.
What is Bill C269?
Bill C269 was created to amend the Fisheries Act to prohibit dumping raw sewage into waterways that fish live in. That includes just about every waterway in Canada. This should be a “no brainer” in government proceedings.
Reviewed in February of this year, bill C269 was introduced by the conservative government to amend the current Fisheries Act due to the current and increasingly popular practice of dumping raw sewage into our waterways. Word of mouth is that the current Liberal government plans to vote the amendment down. Why? Most likely because it was introduced by the Conservatives.
Changes to the Fisheries Act
2021 Proposal for Bill C269
deleterious substance means
(a) any substance that, if added to any water, would degrade or alter or form part of a process of degradation or alteration of the quality of that water so that it is rendered or is likely to be rendered deleterious to fish or fish habitat or to the use by man of fish that frequent that water, or
(b) any water that contains a substance in such quantity or concentration, or that has been so treated, processed or changed, by heat or other means, from a natural state that it would, if added to any other water, degrade or alter or form part of a process of degradation or alteration of the quality of that water so that it is rendered or is likely to be rendered deleterious to fish or fish habitat or to the use by man of fish that frequent that water,
and without limiting the generality of the foregoing includes
(c) any substance or class of substances prescribed pursuant to paragraph (2)(a),
(d) any water that contains any substance or class of substances in a quantity or concentration that is equal to or in excess of a quantity or concentration prescribed in respect of that substance or class of substances pursuant to paragraph (2)(b), and
(e) any water that has been subjected to a treatment, process or change prescribed pursuant to paragraph (2)(c); (substance nocive)
Proposed Wording: within the definition deleterious substance after paragraph (b) and before paragraph (c) should be replaced with the the following:
“and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, does not include raw sewage, but includes”
and the definition of raw sewage as follows:
raw sewage means sewage that has not yet been processed or treated to separate and remove contaminants, and includes:
(a) used water from sanitary appliances that contains human fecal matter or human urine,
(b) used water, other than the type of water described in paragraph (a), from sanitary appliances or from other appliances in a kitchen or laundry,
and (c) surface runoff and stormwater that is mixed with the type of water described in (a)
What You Can Do:
Contact your Liberal MP to tell them to vote YES on bill C269 to amend the Fisheries Act. Don’t let this critical detail slip through the bureaucratic cracks. Fix the obvious; the act should have been amended years ago to define and prohibit the dumping of raw sewage into our waterways!
This is the Worst Canadian Government Ever: is a scathing (but accurate) article from Rex Murphy in the National Post. Not my words, but many of my thoughts and opinions!
The country is in an economic coma. The House of Commons is a movie set. We are shamed in the international community. And the list goes on.
It’s a mess. It’s a shambles. It’s an embarrassment. It is the worst ever by any reasonable measurement.
Judging by their performance on the most important files, the current bunch in Ottawa would need to hire a consultant to figure out how to get wet in a thunderstorm and set up a task force to study how to tie their own shoes.
Look around you. Canada is in the biggest, most persistent, and threatening crisis since — well since ever. The long-term care homes are under a blizzard of mortality. There is heartbreak in every small business in the country. The worry and anxiety level of most everyday citizens — especially those not shielded by uninterrupted cheques from provincial and federal governments, and those not serving as a member of a legislature — is at an all-time high.
On the Covid Nightmare
This government hoards any real details about what vaccines are here, how many are “secured” on paper only, and what they have promised to pay for them, as a miser hoards gold. Every press briefing on this most important of concerns is a dance of evasion, platitude, confused projection, and sometimes just pure ignorance of what is actually the case.
They are the most deliberately obfuscatory, opaque, access-of-information-allergic administration under the democratic sun.
One year into COVID our venerated House of Commons is a disemboweled, non-functioning, neglected wreck. The targeted disrespect of the absolute and central symbol and instrument of our democracy has no parallel. No “minority” government has ever operated with the smug insouciance and patented, virtue-perfumed arrogance towards the Commons as the Trudeau government. This is, when we step back, their biggest sin.
Shutdowns and Cabinet Shuffles
Since 1867 no prime minister has abandoned the House of Commons and downgraded its significance for so long a period and for such obviously self-centered and political opportunistic reasons. It is so much easier, so much safer, so much more convenient — to walk from the bedroom to the one-printer office and mail in platitudes and arias of evasion via Zoom
What other government has parted ways with a governor-general, and to top it off, a governor-general brought in by the world’s No. 1 “male feminist” as a role model for young women and girls? The same male-feminist who conveniently loses all his top-performing female ministers. Someone should do a “gender analytics” study on Justin Trudeau’s cabinet.
Not to worry. It has lost a finance minister over ethics charges during the mightiest spending binge since the Big Bang. An attorney general, the prime guardian of our rule of law, was hounded out because she would not bend the rule of law. The most qualified and respected woman, a doctor of medicine no less (in other words a real doctor) could not abide staying in so carelessly unethical a cabinet. Thus, at the very time Canada would have wished the most competent person to deal with a once-in-a-hundred years medical emergency, Dr. Jane Philpott is not even in the government.
Meantime Seamus O’Regan, the Trudeau cabinet’s favourite nomad — he takes up and puts down portfolios with the “greatest of ease,” leaving no impression behind as he goes — burbles on, during a pandemic, about planting two billion trees. Imagine, two billion. We only have about 300 billion already! Priorities I guess. Repeat after me the holy incantation: climate change, climate change, climate change. It’s better than a vaccine.
Hostages in Chinese Prisons
We have two hostages in the tyrannical torture houses of Chinese prisons. Those poor, suffering and tormented men must truly have been uplifted — if any news ever reaches them — to learn that their government, during a world pandemic, was collaborating with the Chinese government to “jointly develop a COVID-19 vaccine.” Remember the line from Casablanca — “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world …” — and Insert “countries” for gin joints. Of all the countries in all the world, why did the Trudeau government pick …. China? Incompetence can’t cover it. We need some term that speaks of dedicated and determined, merciless and staggering wrong-headedness: the purblind leading the purblind.
We have had no budget in two years. (Actually, we have one now, this article was penned pre-budget release, but unbelievably irresponsible) We have spent more than any other government, by far, in our history. We have no idea where all the money has gone. The auditor general has been denied the resources to even keep track of a portion of it. There is no coherence, or trust, between the majority of the premiers and the prime minister. We have been offered occasional delights, like the celebrated comic opera of the WE brothers and the (temporary) $43-million gift to them to administer half a billion dollars of your money.
The Liberals have given far more time and dedicated energy to the Derek Sloan affair (whatever that was) than the cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline, and the emergent threat of Alberta leaving the Confederation. (Query for a serious panel discussion: Is Canada safe from Bidenism?) Alberta groans while the Trudeau government spends over $36 million for “stay-at-home chairs” for its civil service.
Is our present government the worst Canadian government ever. Can there be any question?
The country is in an economic coma. The House of Commons is a movie set. We are shamed in the international community. Contracts on COVID are all Top Secret. There is zero reliability on any projection made by a minister or the prime minister on where we are on vaccines and distribution. Rideau Hall is shortly to be listed on Airbnb. Farmers have been hit by fuel and carbon taxes. Newfoundland teeters on bankruptcy. The West has never felt so far out of things. I could go on.
Is this what was meant when the rosy words were first pronounced: Canada’s back?
To calm yourself, however, there is always this: Climate change.
Climate change. Climate change. Two billion trees. Two billion trees. Home chairs. Home chairs. Derek Sloan.
Photo credit: SEAN KILPATRICK/THE CANADIAN PRESS
Is Rex Murphy correct? Do we currently have the worst Canadian government ever? What do you think?
Our Canadian Tulip Festival, an annual event here in Ottawa since 1953, is a true harbinger of spring. Thousands of tulips, in every colour imaginable, line the flower beds stretching along the Rideau Canal, the same canal, by the way, that becomes the world largest skating rink in the winter, but I digress. Back to the tulip festival…
The Canadian Tulip Festival was established to celebrate the historic Royal gift of tulips from the Dutch to Canadians immediately following the Second World War as a symbol of international friendship. The Festival preserves the memorable role of the Canadian troops in the liberation of the Netherlands and Europe, as well as commemorates the birth of Dutch Princess Margriet in Ottawa during World War II—the only royal personage ever born in Canada.
This year, thanks to COVID-19 social distancing restrictions, a virtual tour of the tulips is available. There is an advantage to these restrictions; those of you who live too far away to visit the splendor of these tulips in person can peruse this international symbol of friendship and peace from your own home.
This past week, with Ontario taking baby steps to reopen their economy, we were granted permission to walk along the paths to view the tulips in person. That is as long as we are practicing social distancing and not loitering in large groups.
If the Covid police are out, as I’m sure they will be, it might be less stressful to watch the video…Enjoy!
With the recent death of actress, activist and lobbyist Shirley Douglas, AKA Kiefer Sutherland’s mom, I am reminded of just how fortunate we are to have our public healthcare system. What’s the connection? Our socialist healthcare system was founded by Tommy Douglas, former premier of Saskatchewan and federal NDP leader, Shirley’s father and Kiefer’s grandfather.
During the 2011 federal election, as a spokesperson of the Canadian Health Coalition, Shirley Douglas offered this advice:
“Let us never forget that the federal government is the guardian and enforcer of the five principles of the Canada Health Act: universality, accessibility, portability, comprehensiveness and public administration”
When we are faced with a health crisis like the one we are in the midst of, we Canadians should be especially appreciative of the passion and commitment Shirley Douglas and her father displayed for their vision for public healthcare.
While we Canadians are appreciative, citizens from countries without such a public healthcare system are probably quite envious.
Is anyone else annoyed that Justin Trudeau is spending Easter weekend at his cottage in Quebec with his wife, children, mother and staff?
The rest of us, however, have been implored to practice social distancing. To stay away from anyone that does not live with us, especially those over the age of 70, restrict travel to essential trips, stay away from our cottages, avoid congregating in groups of more than five, and limit trips across the Ontario/Quebec border to essential ones.
With his weekend jaunt, Trudeau has broken all the rules he has imposed on us. He crossed the Ontario/Quebec border, went to his cottage, and is spending time with those not in his immediate family, including his 71 year old mother.
In the meantime, most of us are complying to the social distancing rules. You can see it in the deserted roadways, parking lots, and parks, as well as the direction arrows and other limitations in the grocery stores. Chats with neighbours are from the ends of our respective driveways. Socializing with friends and family is achieved through Zoom “meetings” or Facebook video chats. Our evening walks are eerie, like walking through a ghost town. Not that I have experienced a ghost town, but I can imagine.
Our three sons and 4 grandchildren do not live with us so we have only seen them on videos or from a distance of 6 feet for almost a month now. This has been very confusing for the grandchildren as they don’t understand why they cannot visit, play with, snuggle and hug this Grandma or their other grandparents. We have resisted taking trips to our cottage, located in a remote area of Ontario. We have limited our exposure to others by reducing grocery shopping to once a week and forgoing other shopping altogether. Even my 60th birthday was regulated by social distancing rules.
Like most other residents of Canada, we have been following these recommendations AS REQUESTED BY OUR GOVERNMENT, yet our leader is not practicing social distancing. Instead he is playing “Do as I Say and not as I do.”
This is not a good way to lead a country through turbulent times, especially if you expect us to follow the rules.
Photo credit from feature image (top of page) to Markus Spiske and Pexels