the basic Liberal weakness

As many have pointed out, the coming election is a stand on guard moment for those who love Canada. And today’s Liberals can’t cut it.

Justin Trudeau appears guided by his handlers’ evaluation of the latest public opinion polls. There’s a strong desire to get into power, but where are his principles?

For example: after the failure of Stephane Dion’s 2008 campaign, the Liberals dropped any mention of the green shift. But Dion’s setback was not an indication that his ideas were wrong. Dion encountered the same powerful resistance that Al Gore did in his 2000 race against George W. Bush.

Al Gore is one of the most gifted people ever to enter political life, and the popular vote showed him ahead in that election. Everything depended on the state of Florida, but in a 5-4 vote the Supreme Court halted the counting of the vote, and declared Bush the winner. This was one of the most amazing moments of our times.

Gore’s book An Inconvenient Truth is well worth looking at, as he saw first-hand how the disinformation campaigns waged by the cigarette industry, were adapted by the fossil fuel companies. And he documents the aftermath, when Bush took power. Government scientists were censored, and a petroleum lobbyist was put in charge of environmental policy in the White House.

Dion is not the most persuasive communicator, and he may have been slightly ahead of his times. The Canadian people are not stupid though, and most want to avoid causing major damage to the environment. If the Liberals had been more patient and kept the green shift as part of their platform, they’d be on firmer ground today.

Different types of alternative energy providers are already here. To name a few: solar panels are commonplace now. So are the heat pumps that cool the house in the summer and warm in winter. My brother in law installed one that can draw heat from the outside air in sub zero temperatures. Reportedly the geothermal devices are even more efficient. Canada’s Ballard Power remains the world leader in hydrogen fuel cells. B.C.’s Westport Innovations developed natural gas diesel, and they’re also world wide. Railpower is gone from Canada now, but their hybrid diesel technology is still used for rubber tired gantries. Each one of these companies creates good jobs, whether it’s in engineering, manufacturing or installation.

Tom Mulcair’s NDP seems fully aware of the benefits these green energy companies bring to Canada, both today and as they grow and fulfill their promise, far into the future.

Albertans too are starting to realize the boom times are over, and they’re no different from the rest of Canada. The corporations are fast-tracking automation and in a few years even the largest of trucks will be self-driving, so it’s inevitable more jobs will be lost.

It’s disastrous for Canada to ship out so much raw material, whether it’s logs or bitumen. Factories, sawmills and refineries should be based in the homeland.

Canada needs a government that’s flexible, forward looking and able to protect people in changing times, over the long term. The NDP is the only viable option.