Environmentalists have been making a lot of "game over" predictions over the years. Fortunately for us -- and for the fortune tellers themselves, even if it has meant a loss of credibility -- none of them has become reality. Fifty years from now, human ingenuity will have translated into technological advances that are inconceivable today. So, let's stay positive instead of falling prey to the exaggerated nonsense of fear-mongers. We'll have a much better chance to find realistic solutions to the world's problems.
It's a tough job being the Natural Resources Minister these days, between the growing opposition to proposed pipeline projects you're pushing for, plus taking all of those orders from Stephen Harper as he plots the next cabinet shuffle. All of that pressure must explain why you and your ministry appear to have lost focus lately.
Imagine if you discovered that a doctor was doing open-heart surgery based on a technique they saw on the TV show. Sound far-fetched? Unfortunately, it's this kind of unscientific technique that the Harper government appears to be relying on to diagnose the health of our planet, and how they should react to it.
Earlier this week, our Minister for Natural Resources, the Hon. Joe Oliver, went to Washington on what the Canadian media mistakenly insists on calling a "charm offensive." It really cannot be described as having anything to do with "charm" when the minister, fresh from having told La Presse that scientists are less worried about global warming; that 2 degrees is not a big deal, decided to insult one of the USA's most respected scientists, James Hansen. Dr. Hansen is not just someone who used to work at NASA. He was NASA's top climate scientist. Thursday, I found this tribute to him that will give Canadians a sense of his stature south of the border and globally.
Attitudes and willful blindness form the basis of federal government policy as expressed by our federal Minister of Natural Resources, and that it is a sign of negligent disregard for the public interest. It is unacceptable. A revealing exchange with the editorial board of La Presse confirms that if Joe Oliver has ever had a science briefing, he wasn't listening.