When tribe trumps truth
he shenanigans by both the B.C. Liberals and the NDP over the Site C dam and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s doublespeak on offshore tax havens are all the evidence Canadians should need to not feel superior to the American cousins when it comes to rejecting truth and facts in favour of political one-upmanship.
The Oval Office Oaf believes a retired KGB agent who specialized in counterintelligence, not the heads of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Secuity Agency, never mind Senate and House investigations, that Russia didn’t meddle in the 2016 U.S. elections. The retired KGB agent, Vladimir Putin, is now the president of Russia, while Donald Trump honestly believes he’s too smart to be manipulated by a guy whose career was built on skillful deceit.
The inconvenient truths about Russia are either dismissed outright or, if claiming the Earth is flat and the moon landing never happened is a step too far, used to point out how Hillary Clinton, who currently holds no elected office anywhere, benefited just as much from foreign meddling.
Yet that’s not the worst stench coming out of America at the moment. That would be the election next month for U.S. senator from Alabama. Despite multiple allegations from named women saying Roy Moore, the Republican nominee, sexually assaulted them when they were teenagers, many Republicans are standing by their man. Their response – well, you know Bill Clinton and other Democrats did it, too.
Except, of course, Moore did nothing wrong.
Signing the high school yearbook of one of his accusers and commenting about how sweet and beautiful she is when he’s a district prosecutor in his mid-thirties proves nothing and is completely normal. Right. In other words, the remaining Moore supporters refuse to accept the brave words of women in their midst but cheerfully believe every word of all the Hollywood women who have come forward to rightfully disgrace Harvey Weinstein because he was a Clinton supporter who raised millions to help get her elected.
It’s the Washington Post’s fault for breaking this story and all the other fake news out there.
Except for the reporting by the Post, the New York Times, CNN and others about Weinstein, about the Clinton emails, about how her campaign used money and influence to make certain Bernie Sanders wouldn’t win the Democratic nomination last summer.
That’s real news, even though it wasn’t broken by the so-called journalists at Fox News or Breitbart.
What poses for reporting in those places is a piece saying the Washington Post spent a month in Alabama trying to find women with stories about Roy Moore. Of course, the Post did. Spending time, money and effort to get to the truth, wherever that may lead, rather than just making it up, is what journalists do.
But let’s not be too smug north of the border. If Russia can target a U.S. presidential election, why can’t it target Canadian elections as well?
And the Site C file shows how political parties on both sides in B.C. are just as easily prone to dismiss knowledge and expertise for political convenience. As premier, Christy Clark refused to let the B.C. Utilities Commission study the viability of building the Site C dam, even when every single one of the commissioners were Liberal appointees. Why not decide to build it and then come up with reasons to do it? Why go through the hassle of asking smart people to study the merits of spending billions of dollars on a public works project?
John Horgan’s NDP is no better, on both this file and Kinder Morgan.
More consultation needs to be done with area First Nations, both Horgan and Green leader Andrew Weaver say, glossing over the fact that the courts have already ruled multiple times in favour of the government and that there are already five agreements in place with area First Nations, includ- ing the McLeod Lake Indian Band north of Prince George.
Never mind that the federal government, not the province, has jurisdiction over Kinder Morgan and thoroughly studied the proposal to twin the existing pipeline that runs through the Rockies, connecting Alberta crude to the port of Vancouver. Never mind that pipelines are by far the safest way to ship oil and gas products.
Meanwhile, Trudeau downplaying his connections to individuals running money into offshore tax havens to avoid paying higher taxes in Canada while insisting family doctors and other small business entrepreneurs pay more exposes the sham that is the federal Liberal pledge to work for the middle class.
Pointing that out is, of course, a baseless attack by the right-wing corporate media, even though it was the CBC that collaborated with an international journalistic effort to disclose the Paradise Papers. Forget the facts. Forget the truth. That requires thinking and – gasp! – the ability to change one’s mind and admit being wrong. Best to just accept the wisdom of the tribe, even when it comes at the expense of discrediting your own government experts or demonizing sexual assault victims. Decency? Common sense? Sold down the same river.
— Editor-in-chief Neil Godbout