Prime minister Trudeau and his provincial counterparts are gathering in Vancouver (naturally) today for talks on climate change and clean technology. The idea seems to be to get a consensus from the premiers on cutting greenhouse gas emissions and implementation of carbon pricing, i.e. carbon tax.
Will there be some miraculous breakthrough? I wish, but I doubt it. Some, like Saskatchewan's Poindexter, Brad Wall, will refuse to accept a carbon tax saying the time isn't right (and, for Wall, never will be). Others will be looking for wiggle room and weasel words, the 'goodie bags' of confederal politics.
Of course, we'll just have to wait and see - and hope. But I'm reminded of a passage written by Larissa MacFarquhar in an article for The New Yorker, "What Money Can Buy." In just a few, brief sentences, she manages to encapsulate reality that would require paragraphs, even pages for lesser scribes to convey:
The urge to change the world is normally thwarted by a near-insurmountable barricade of obstacles: failure of imagination, failure of courage, bad governments, bad planning, incompetence, corruption, fecklessness, the laws of nations, the laws of physics, the weight of history, inertia of all sorts, psychological unsuitability on the part of the would-be changer, the resistance of people who would lose from the change, the resistance of people who would benefit from it, the seduction of activities other than world-changing, lack of practical knowledge, lack of political skill and lack of money.
Looking through MacFarquhar's compendium, it's hard not to see where each of our political leaders would fit in there. Lack of money-induced failure of courage is the one that most worries me. Almost all of those afflictions seem to stick to some and, yes, I mean Brad Wall.
I'm thinking that Justin's Sunny Ways won't be worth a dam on this one. Let's see if he's willing to go full Droog on Wall, pour encourager les autres.