Friday, October 04, 2019

History and Politics

This isn't a partisan blog.  You have never seen an electoral prediction here, and certainly no electoral endorsements, in all the time it has been running.

But there is one party in the current Canadian election that has me thinking -- historically, I hope, not trying to be a pundit -- about the role of one of our major parties in how we deal with the world we live in.

This came to me after I opened the door the other day to an election canvasser seeking support for the local Conservative Party candidate.

"Not going to find any support in this house," I said and then, without really expecting to, found myself saying "I don't know how anyone can support the Conservatives and look themselves in the mirror these days."

Then I thought I had said enough to this poor guy, and wished him luck or something. He seemed quite willing to back away from the door, actually. People put up with a lot for their party loyalties.

This was right around the time of the students' climate strike.  It underlined, not that it was unclear previously, that deciding how to respond the climate crisis is the great issue of our time. In a strange halting kind of way the world is beginning to accept that.  even if we are not exactly taking decisive action.

But the Conservative Party of Canada? Its standout policy on climate issues is a pledge to cancel the federal climate carbon levy.  The day of the students' climate strike Andrew Scheer announced a highway building policy, because better highways would... save energy and reduce emissions.

I'm not keen on their indigenous policy, their ambiguous position on minorities and immigrants, their spending and tax policies, or even their Senate policy. (Back to patronage? Srsly?)  But it's the climate issue that really has me thinking about reality-based policy making.

You know that line about conservatives standing athwart history yelling stop?   It does seem relevant to this election.
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