And here we are…
Canadians shouldn’t even know the name of the Line 5 pipeline.
It should be completely inconsequential to our fortunes.
It shouldn’t matter at all.
After all, we’re a country that is absolutely swimming in oil, with some of the largest reserves on the planet.
We could easily pump out enough oil to serve our own domestic needs many times over, put a bunch into a strategic reserve, and make billions selling it around the world, with tonnes left over even after all of that.
Yet, here we are, dependent on a foreign pipeline to supply some of our most heavily populated regions.
Quite frankly, it’s a disgrace.
And it shows how foolish our nation is, and how lacking we are in any sense of our national interest or strategic acumen.
“The threat that by May 12, Gov. Whitmer will shut down Line 5 to Ontario, is so beautiful an issue it should be hanging in an art gallery.
For what have we to look at? We have two leaders, Greener than shamrocks, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Gov. Whitmer, who see themselves plucked by the goddess of destiny herself, as human ambulances rushing to save the Earth from global warming. Who colour their dreams with visions of every oil and gas project in the world evaporating, and a flood of solar panels and a wilderness of windmills covering the planet.
Every solemn word from the mouth of Gov. Whitmer echoes with perfection the rhetoric and environmental concerns of PM Trudeau, and his iron-bound conviction that global warming is the approach of Armageddon. He and she are twins on this topic. You could not place the tiniest film of gold leaf, a single hair, between her deepest urgings on climate change and those of Mr. Trudeau.
Both hold their convictions on global warming with a fervour truly religious. Hear Gov. Whitmer on why she must shut down Line 5: that the possibility of a spill invokes “the state’s solemn duty to protect the Great Lakes under the public trust doctrine.”
However for Trudeau this pipeline is a perplexity. For you see Line 5, is not a pipeline OUT of export-blockaded Alberta, heading to the U.S. and hoping for a better market.
Line 5 is a pipeline INTO Ontario, and — as Robert Frost was good enough to supply the phrase — that “has made all the difference.” To oppose shutting it down, as he electorally is obliged to do, he must like the windcock on the church steeple, swing around 180 degrees.”
Now, in a world without consequences, this would be hilarious.
And it is certainly ironic.
But there are consequences, and the importance of oil to our society means the shutdown of Line 5 could bring real hardship to people.
If only there had been an alternative
Given this situation, it’s worth remembering that it was completely unnecessary.
Canada should already have the Energy East pipeline bringing oil from Alberta to the East, making Line 5 something that wouldn’t be needed, or at the very least rendering the possible shutdown of Line 5 something that could be mitigated with little disruption.
But of course, Energy East was cancelled, in an environment in which the Federal Liberal government had made it clear it wasn’t a fan of the pipeline and was imposing regulations and taxes that made it far less feasible.
And here’s what the Quebec government had said about Energy East:
“There is no social acceptability for oil in Quebec. We have hydro electricity surpluses. So I’ll try to sell them.” – Francois Legault
Of course, now Quebec is extremely concerned about the shutdown of Line 5.
Canada is not a serious country
A while back, I wrote about how Canada is not a serious country, and while I wasn’t directly discussing Energy East and Line 5, this impending situation makes the point perfectly.
A serious country would never have let itself be put in this situation.
A serious country would recognize what an enormous gift and blessing it is to have such abundant reserves of oil, would show respect to the regions that produce it, and would – as a basic foundation of national energy security – ensure that the oil could be moved with ease throughout the country.
Instead, Canada did none of this, and treated Alberta like garbage, put shackles on the energy sector, and purposely ensured we couldn’t easily transport oil throughout the nation.
We treated the blessing of abundant oil reserves as a curse, and now we reap the cursed results.
Pathological obsession with trends
A key problem facing this country – aside from the seemingly endemic weakness in our national mindset – is our pathological obsession with following the most prominent politically-correct trend.
When BLM protests happened in the United States, ‘Canadian’ media was all of a sudden filled with similar stories, racial narratives, and protests.
When the UN starts talking about climate change, Canadians fall all over ourselves trying to cripple our own economy to feel good like we’re ‘nice.’
Ahh, but notice how that crippling of our economy is seen by many as merely symbolic, the same people who are now ‘shocked’ that there are real consequences, as with the possible impending shutdown of Line 5.
That’s another example of our foolishness of a country, as many politicians in the East were glad to ‘stick it to Alberta,’ but are now panicking as they wonder where they’ll get oil from. Just basic common-sense would have dictated that a strong Alberta, and a strong nationwide distribution network for oil supplies, would have benefitted everyone, but our country lacks even that basement-level strategic understanding.
Coasting along on the accomplishments of others
The sad fact is that Canada is now coasting along on the accomplishments of others, both those who built up our nation in the past, and the economic power of the United States.
But that can’t go on forever.
If we continue to be fools – and the rampant money printing of the Bank of Canada coupled with our anti-growth policies represents a doubling-down on stupidity – Canada’s blessed abundance of resources and our immensely lucky geographical reality won’t be enough to stave off a brutal decline.