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It takes a radical to know a radical

Joe Oliver, Minister of Natural Resources, is apparently mad that his government’s plan to dump an oil pipeline through some of British Columbia’s pristine wilderness and have oil tankers come through to pick it up (and why should anyone be concerned about that, right? Exxon Valdez… cough) has been slowed down by environmental review hearings and thousands of people wanting to comment on it (and presumably express their opposition to the plan).  He’s taken to calling Environmental groups and others who oppose this as “radicals”.

Pressed on what he defines as radical, he came up with a remarkably good explanation:

In an interview on CBC News Network, Oliver said radicals are “a group of people who don’t take into account the facts but are driven by an ideological imperative.”

Putting aside the debatable charge that belonging to the Sierra Club or being a member of a First Nations band concerned about the effects of a potential oil spill in their land means they and others who oppose this is “radical” (yet another attempt by the Conservative government to demonize its opponents and call them “enemies of Canada”), Joe Oliver should know what a radical is: his government has a long series of decisions that fit that definition precisely: dismantling the long-gun registry, wanting to build a series of multi-billion dollar prisons, destroyed the effectiveness of the long-form census, among other decisions, without taking into account anything to do with facts that support their decisions.

He speaks from first hand experience; this is one of the more radical governments in Canada’s governing history.


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