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The Disaffected Lib: Why the World’s Eyes Will Be on Canada on October 19th

Next week’s general election will decide whether we can restore the Rule of Law and a functional democracy to Canada. Both hinge on driving Stephen Harper out of office. Yet that’s just scratching the surface of what it means to Canada and to the world to rid our country of this thug.

In the latest Foreign Policy, Jeff Dembicki writes that freeing Canada from Harper’s yoke is just as critical to the world as it is to Canadians.

For years, Canada and Australia have been the climate villains the world has loved to hate. They’ve been the ones giggling (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: So What’s Our Excuse?

Amnesty International is urging Britain’s Cameron government to stop arms shipments to Saudi Arabia.  Amnesty claims the weapons are being used to deliberately slaughter civilians in Houthi-rebel controlled parts of Yemen.

Amnesty said it found a pattern of “appalling disregard” for civilian lives by the Saudi-led coalition in an investigation of 13 air strikes in north-eastern Saada governorate during May, June and July: these killed some 100 civilians – including 59 children and 22 women and injured a further 56, including 18 children.

Since last March coalition air strikes have hit homes, schools, markets and other civilian infrastructure, as well (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Stephen Harper’s Oily Comeuppance

A Saudi prince once said that the Stone Age didn’t end because man ran out of stones.  The Age of Oil may be headed for the same fate.  A Goldman Sachs outlook suggests the price of crude oil will hover around $45 a barrel for the next year or so and could even hit $20.

That’s not good news for self-styled ‘energy superpowers,’ i.e. Canada.  Richard Fantin of Canadian Trends has an insightful report of what’s in store for his province, Alberta, and it makes for grim reading.

Remember when then Liberal leader, Michael Ignatieff, proclaimed Athabasca the (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Are You Supporting Politics of Nihilism?

2030.  You do realize that’s just 15-years away.  Do you realize that 15-years is a heartbeat when it comes to making fundamental change?

So, what’s so important about 2030?  Plenty.  By then we’ll be experiencing climate change impacts that are disruptive and difficult to bear.  Take your head out of the sand, look around you – all around, and you’ll see many of these impacts are already here and they’re growing.

We’re coping, more or less, at least most of us.  There’s a certain leeway, call it resilience.  We’ve got resilience, so far.  However, as the challenges grow and worsen, (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: The "Piss Away" Province

The key to understanding the dilemma is to realize that Tar Sand, bitumen, is just a part of Alberta’s oil history.  The province has also produced a vast amount of conventional crude oil.  It’s actually produced and exported a good deal more conventional crude oil than Norway.  That brings us to the starting point of the conversation. The CBC today features another one of those awkward, cringe-worthy stories about Alberta and Norway and why Albertans are wallowing in another recession while their Norwegian counterparts are sitting on a mountain of wealth.  The easy answer is that Albertans, while deeply Conservative, (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: A Closer Look at Oil and Climate Change.

Stephen Harper will not be pleased.  The Carnegie Endowment is fingering his cherished Tar Sands.

Not all oil is created equal.  Sweet crude, of the Saudi sort, comes out of the ground almost ready to use.  It’s pumped out of the ground easily, free of most contaminants (sulphur, water, sand, natural gas).  The amount of energy required to extract and refine a barrel of oil is modest.  That, then, provides the benchmarks by which other oils from other places can be judged.

A new report from the Carnegie Endowment, “Know Your Oil: Creating a Global Oil-Climate Index,” (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Harper’s Bitumen Policy – Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell

The Harper government has gone to extraordinary lengths to avoid the public learning just what’s in bitumen and the risk that stuff poses to our rivers, our lakes, our groundwater supply and our oceans.  Mum’s the word.

Two things we’ve learned about Harper by now.  He’s secretive and pathologically dishonest.  The man is a born liar.

One of those subjects Harper wants to keep out of the public eye is bitumen, his Athabasca Tar Sands bounty.  His government commissioned a study in 2003 and promptly buried it.  It has now surfaced but it raises a massive number of questions and (Read more…)

The Disaffected Lib: Whether You Support Pipelines or Not, Here’s Something We Can Surely Agree On.

No secret I’m opposed to both Kinder Morgan and Northern Gateway.  A sizeable majority of British Columbians are of the same mind but a significant minority supports the pipeline initiatives.  In situations like this it can be helpful to seek out areas of agreement, common ground.

Here’s an idea we should all be able to endorse.  If you insist on shipping Athabasca oil to Asia, why not ship oil?  That may sound facetious but it’s not.

Bad as these pipelines are, they’re made far worse by what Ottawa and Alberta want to push through them – dilbit.  Dilbit is bitumen (Read more…)

Left Over: The Emperor’s (ap)Prentice Magically Transforms First Nations Support

Jim Prentice says many Alberta First Nations are behind new pipeline projects ‘Amongst the strongest allies that Alberta has at the table are the First Nations of this province’

CBC News Posted: Sep 16, 2014 9:25 PM MT Last Updated: Sep 17, 2014 6:20 AM MT


Great that you have First Nations behind the Cons and Chinese in Alberta (I don’t believe it, but whatever…) Another reason to keep all that filthy bitumen in-Province..why not build a refinery right there, on a supportive rez? Still think you’d have First Nations support?

“Art Sterritt, executive director of British Columbia’s (Read more…)

Politics and its Discontents: Tar Sands Refinery Cries "Uncle" on Climate Change – Seeks Taxpayer Bailout

The Delaware City Refining Company doesn’t just refine oil, it refines bitumen from the Tar Sands. The company, however, is intensely aware of the dangers of climate change, so much so in fact that it’s seeking tax dollars to protect its refinery from “tidal encroachment” – another way of saying sea level rise.

The Delaware City Refinery is one of the first refineries to shift its crude oil supply to rail and is refining tar sands — one of the most carbon-intensive fuels known to man.

To add insult to injury, the sea level rise preparations the Delaware City Refining (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Big by-election in Fort McMurray? Never mind that! As goes Macleod, so goes Alberta…

Fort McMurray, before the Bitumen Boom. Things have changed. Below: Conservative Fort McMurray-Athabasca candidate David Yurdiga, Liberal candidate Kyle Harrietha, NDP candidate Lori McDaniel, former Conservative MP Brian Jean.

If the good people of Fort McMurray climb out of bed this morning and decide to elect a Liberal to represent them in Parliament, there will be shock, dismay and consternation throughout Alberta.

But, fear not my fellow Albertans, even in the unlikely event this happens, it almost certainly won’t mean whatever you are told it means.

Yes, today is the day after the weekend and the day before Canada Day (Read more…)

Song of the Watermelon: It’s the Climate, Stupid!

Not two weeks since the federal government’s long-anticipated approval of the Northern Gateway pipeline, the magnitude of the obstacles faced by the project are becoming clearer by the day.

There is widespread public hostility — both in Kitimat, envisioned as the pipeline’s end location, as well as across British Columbia more generally. First Nations and environmental groups have launched several court challenges, with more expected to come. Massive protests and civil disobedience are inevitable. Efforts will soon be underway to initiate a province-wide referendum. The government of BC, which must provide about 60 permits, is ambivalent about the (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: It is not ‘Miller Time’ Dan, Green Up or Brown Out!

Richard ‘Hub’ Hughes-


Here is disappointing post from former NDP Premier Dan Miller. It reads like the flashback that it is.

Time will tell whether Miller’s missive will be embraced, rejected or ignored by the new BC NDP opposition leader, John Horgan.


Dan Miller: How will we pay for stuff without the resource sector?

As taxpayers wrestle with another government/teachers collective-bargaining process, and voters look to municipal elections across the province in a little less than six months, let’s get some things straight about the B.C. economy.

First, there is no question that Vancouver and its environs (Read more…)

Bill Longstaff: Could Alberta go green?

With 50 per cent more greenhouse gas emissions than Ontario, Alberta is Canada’s pollution province. And that makes us think of the tar sands. But it’s more than bitumen. Alberta’s electrical power generation, heavily dependent on coal, produces almost as much greenhouse gas as the tar sands. The province gets 63 per cent of its electrical power from coal, burning more than the rest of the

Cowichan Conversations: Super Industrial BC

Richard ‘Hub’ Hughes-Positively Political

Rafe Mair is back in the saddle and zoning in on issues of significance to all British Columbians.

Mair is calling out to BC NDP Leader John Horgan to stand up to the powerful oil and gas corporations, in part because if he won’t, who will?

Horgan is our best option to bring some sanity and balance back into the dance between the needs of the environment and employment in BC.

In his first few days as leader Horgan distanced himself from the Site C Dam proposal promoted by the BC Liberal Clark forces.

He has (Read more…)

Left Over: Dirty Oil Wars…..This is Just the Beginning


Here in BC, we appreciate any and all support for this issue..but where is the rest of the country on all the damage this MonsterCon has caused? They can’t all be the drooling knuckle-draggers of Ford Nation, but I have to wonder if it isn’t already too late…the people of Canada, in general, seem so passive that they come across as catatonic.. Where is the energy to fight? I remember back in the 70′s hitting the bricks on a regular basis to fight Trudeau’s price and wage controls, to protest war, to stop the (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Charge Protestors With Terrorism And Throw Them in Prison!

Richard Hughes-Political Blogger

This compelling video landed in my inbox this morning courtesy of a Cowichan Bay activist.

It claims that a Canadian corporation Trans Canada Pipeline, the force behind Keystone XL pipeline is training FBI and local law enforcement agencies on how to charge legal protestors with terrorism.

They say that in Oklahoma the cops and prosecutors are lapping it up.

This ’The Young Turks‘ video shines a light on the outrageous tactics of Trans Canada Pipeline corporation. The latest President Obama stall delaying a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline to deliver bitumen from the Alberta Tar (Read more…)

Left Over: Opposition to a Pipeline, any Pipeline? Say it Ain’t So…

Pipeline push-back: What’s behind the rising opposition to Canada’s big oil pipelines Climate change debate behind animosity toward Northern Gateway and Keystone XL

By Janet Davison, CBC News Posted: Apr 29, 2014 5:00 AM ET

This headline is profoundly is blatantly obvious to anyone with half a brain why we are opposed..just like our jobs are being sold to the lowest bidder, so are our resources, and to hell with the environment.. Now David Black (what an aptly named fellow!) is pushing for a refinery at the edge of our Province to take all that filth (Read more…)

The Common Sense Canadian: Residents of Peace River, AB wrestle with authorities over bitumen fumes

Fumes from these bitumen storage tanks are allegedly driving Alberta families from their homes.

Read this Feb. 20th VICE article that provides a local look inside our Jan. 28th Reported Elsewhere story about the state of northern Alberta families vacating their homes from bitumen fumes emitted by Baytex Energy storage tanks.

The Labrecques, a local Peace River family, share their struggle with industry, government and health officials when they spoke out about the toxic side effects they experienced living half a kilometre from a Baytex oil well:

The pages of Karla and Alain Labrecques photo albums reek of bitumen. They’re so (Read more…)

Cowichan Conversations: Tar Sands Explained in 3 Minutes

Bill Longstaff: Supporting Keystone is supporting the Kochs

Criticism of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline focuses, understandably, on the threat it poses to the environment, both in its construction and in its enabling more production from the tar sands. Too often overlooked is the political mischief that approval will contribute to.

According to an article in the CCPA Monitor, “Petroleum Coke from Oil Refineries Polluting the Atmosphere,” the pipeline Ten phrases that need to die in 2014.

All lists start with a bottle of scotch, a dash of politics, and a bit of pent up frustration. This is one of those lists. 1). “____ should resign.” Be it Ford, Harper, Dave Hancock, or others, we’ve had calls for politicians to resign from across the country (at a glance, most of them being Conservatives). […]

Bill Longstaff: Producing the wrong oil?

The Joint Review Panel has ruled on the viability of the Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline and the result is as expected. The panel, established by the National Energy Board and the federal environment minister, has determined that the pipeline, which would carry bitumen from Alberta’s tar sands to the B.C. coast for tanker export, would be in Canada’s best interests and has recommended it

Alberta Diary: ‘Ethical Cannabis’: Is it time to make … ‘The Case for B.C. Bud’?

Who would’ve thought we’d find a suitable reference to Riders Nation and Ethical Cannabis in one photograph? But courtesy the Calgary Sun, there it is! Note the hat, bottom right. Just saying. Below: Some guy standing in front of Rob Ford’s office.

Those of us who don’t regularly wear melons on our heads or particularly care about Canadian football are waiting impatiently for the results of today’s federal byelections so that we can spin them in ways that reinforce our personal political preferences.

For example, if you’re a conservative of any stripe, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: A tale from the political crypt: a tip o’ Broadway Bob’s Top Hat to Hizzoner Rob Ford

Bob McClelland spotted walking down a staircase in Victoria, circa November 1985. (Ancient Vancouver Sun photo.) Mr. McClelland didn’t know it yet, but forgiveness for his sins was at hand. Below: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford. He’ll be forgiven soon too.

Once upon a time, long, long ago, in a province far, far away, there dwelled a minister of the Crown who was very, very naughty.

Robert “Bob” McClelland, then 52 and the MLA for Langley, was discovered in 1985 to have availed himself of the services of what was quaintly known, in those days, as an escort service.

(Read more…)