Look at it this way. Civilization is almost certainly doomed, finished if the leaders of the world show the same desultory attitude to climate change as Messrs. Harper, Ignatieff and Layton.
The latest number crunching by the United Nations Environment Programme shows that, even if all countries were to fully meet their carbon reduction targets, we're still going to blow right through the magic 2 degrees Celsius mark accepted as the absolute, "never exceed" limit to salvage our civilization. In fact, if our global leaders are miraculously totally successful in achieving their targets, mankind's emissions will still result in about 3.6 degrees Celsius heating by the end of this century.
There is an enormous amount of hope built into these projections. For example, we hope the earth can handle 2 degrees Celsius of heating without reaching 'tipping points' at which the planet begins releasing its own greenhouse gases - CO2 and methane - at life-snuffing volumes. Remember, these tipping points are just that. They're the point at which we capsize, the point where we lose control and are just along for a truly nasty dunking.
Why are Canadians not discussing this? Why are we not getting the information we need from Ottawa? There are so many things we ought to be considering, things we need to begin evaluating. So why is that not happening? Because we have a prime minister who wants to suppress that information and opposition leaders, Liberal and NDP, who are just fine with that.
Steve and Mike are Tar Sands shills, real bitumen boosters. You can't speak of the Tar Sands and the UNEP projections and not come off sounding like a reprobate. When you bring the two into the light of day together, your grand vision of the nation is revealed to be a sham. So what's Jack's excuse? The diminutive, bald-headed plebian knows that discussing this existential threat quickly and inevitably leads to substantial carbon tax initiatives and this court jester doesn't want to be associated with measures that might hit you in the wallet when you take the gas guzzling pick up to the pump.
When it comes to climate change, these three are afraid - not for what's facing our kids and grandkids, but for how this could derail their political fortunes. This is all about them. They're delighted to drone on endlessly about employment insurance and stimulus spending and Afghanistan and anything else they can transform into political fodder - but they won't discuss climate change, what it's going to mean for today's Canadians and tomorrow's and what we can and should be doing about it.
What kind of men are these three? I have one word that fits but I won't use it here.