Saturday, December 15, 2007

Sheer Gall

Canada's reputation has been severely criticised (and no doubt damaged in some quarters), over the past two weeks thanks to this man and his leader.

Baird has spent all of his time in Bali, obstructing, undermining, arguing, avoiding the truth and disenfranchising stakeholders. This of course is no secret because it has been widely reported.

We've been hearing comments like these in the David Suzuki Foundation's news release, throughout the conference.

Key developing countries signalled a willingness to take on new commitments at the two-week-long UN climate conference. However, Canada worked with the United States for most of the meeting to oppose crucial elements of the Bali roadmap. As a result, parts of the deal are too vague to assure a successful outcome of the next round of UN negotiations, due to be completed in 2009.

"Canada worked against the key elements of this deal for most of the two weeks in Bali, and was singled out by other countries and high-ranking UN officials for its obstructive behaviour," said Dale Marshall, David Suzuki Foundation. "In the end, the government responded to public pressure and allowed this deal to go through."

"Canada came to Bali demanding unfair commitments from developing countries, and was roundly criticized for it," said Emilie Moorhouse, Sierra Club of Canada. "In the end, the only bridge that Canada built in Bali was one that led to the U.S."

So what then, are we to make of this comment:

"We were naturally disappointed in the language that weakened and watered down the agreement," Baird said.

The sheet audacity of the man is unbelievable. To arrogantly suggest that the deal wasn't stronger because of others is despicable. If the issue wasn't such an important one, his stance would be laughable. Does he not see that he looks like a buffoon? Can he not see how he has represented Canada to a world that is watching?

An analogy that comes to mind is that of an arsonist who keeps re-lighting a fire, while everyone else is busy trying to put it out. Finally he walks away only to say, it's too bad so much of the structure was lost.

If I didn't know better, I'd say his actions and words were that of a madman. I think though, what we are seeing is his new strategy to be presented in Parliament next month. I imagine the baffle gab will be quite something to behold, but this time, he has too many witnesses to remain credible.

In the end, I'm thankful that a deal was struck, but I remain dumbstruck by the tactics of this government. The sooner we get this gang of thugs out of office, the better.

Again, Steve seems to agree.

More agreement here and here.

33 comments:

Mushroom said...

From the BBC website:

"One-hundred-and-ninety countries are represented here. Thirty-eight of them agreed to take on national binding targets today, we've just got to work on some of the other 150." - John Baird

quaeitur said...

Does he not see that he looks like a buffoon?

Or, he thinks Canadians are buffoons who will believe him.

knb said...

Is this some of the dodge and weave you think he'll use to do nothing muchroom?

knb said...

quaeitur, that's my sense too. Sadly though, that strategy seems to have worked.

Dante said...

The UN can't avoid the science for much longer. Man made warming is a myth. A bit of delay will save a lot of embarrassment for many countries later.

As for the embarrassment the Liberals will face....

The Right is Where its At said...

TO all

The only buffoon here was Stéphane Dion. He went to Bali to make sure that things go right,but was not able to do anything. At least John Baird got the U.S. to go along where the supposedly great Liberal leader Stéphane Dion was not able to do it.

I'm darn proud to be a Canadian today even though you lefties are not.

I have said it before leadership is to do what you believe in not what others want you to do. Its easy to get a deal with others just agree with them and you have a deal.

P.S. I'm still waiting for Mr. Stéphane Dion to visit our brave Man and Women fighting for us in Afghanistan. Oh yea he is to busy!!! I think we could wait until cows come home before he goes.

Now let the mudslinging commence. This is what you libs seem to do when you have different point of view then your own. This is what some of you libs call people who disagree with your own point of view.
Stupid,Idiot,Don't care pick your poison to this,bully etc.. etc..etc..etc..get the drill.

You want to answer me thats o.k. if not that also o.k.But I made my point thats what counts thanks.

knb said...

I have no intention of discussing this issue with individuals so ill informed that they do not believe the science.

Don't bother with useless links. They mean nothing and won't be read.

As to Dion and Afghanistan John, when did Harper show any interest in going as leader of the opposition pray tell?

Dion has said that he'd go when his schedule allowed.

Give it a rest and kindly stay on topic.

The Right is Where its At said...

KNB

"I have no intention of discussing this issue with individuals so ill informed that they do not believe the science."

You could insult me all you want I accept this from liberals its your style;)I do not believe the science entirely no I admit it.

"Don't bother with useless links. They mean nothing and won't be read."
I have no intention God forbid having dissenting views!! It is prohibited here isn't?

"As to Dion and Afghanistan John, when did Harper show any interest in going as leader of the opposition pray tell?"

"Dion has said that he'd go when his schedule allowed."

Here is the difference Harper as opposition never said that he was planing on going,the liberals have said it.Just ask Mr.Denis Corderre.

"Give it a rest and kindly stay on topic."

Now that I have answered you on Afghanistan your going to scowled me for it right?

Jay said...

KNB,
I'd just delete those ridiculous comments from those denialist righites. Half the problem with the issue of climate change is that these fools were given equal air time to spew their misinformation. People have taken that to equate that both positions have equal possibilities when we(and they) all know better.

I have a policy where I will not permit these fools promote their lies any longer. They can play their fiddles at home.

ottlib said...

dante:

Yep and the Earth is flat, the universe revolves around it and all of those knarly lines on Mars were created by an ancient Martian civilization. Oh yes, smoking does not cause cancer.

The Right is...:

Mr. Dion went to Bali and let it be known that Mr. Baird represents the government of Canada but not the country. Him and the Environment Ministers from Ontario and Quebec illustrated that very well.

As well, having an opinion against the vast majority of the governments on the planet is not leadership it is obstinance. There will be consequences for Canada and you cannot count on Mr. Bush to save us because he has demonstrated often that he barely recognizes Canada let alone cares about it.

What does Mr. Dion not visited Afghanistan have to do with the clusterfuck that Mr. Baird got himself into in Bali?

Do you not realize how much material he has given the Liberals and the Greens for the next election?

Do you not realize how important climate change and global warming are to Canadians?

The facade is gone. The Conservatives have firmly put themselves squarely on the wrong side of this issue and it will cost them during the next election, particularly in Quebec where the Kyoto Protocol and its process is the most popular.

knb:

Mr. Baird failed. He did not derail the process, which was his and Mr. Harper's objective.

I stated a couple of weeks ago that the Europeans would have the objective of making certain the process would continue but they would not try to achieve anything substantive until Mr. Bush was finally thrown into the dustbin of history. That is exactly what has happened.

It is frustrating to those of us who want action now but it is the right strategy. The alternative was to let the Bali talks fail and the process to fall.

So the process will slowly go forward and as the players change in North America it will move towards the right outcome.

Indeed knb, I am rather pleased by the outcome. The Harper government put on a full court press to derail the Kyoto process. However, they utterly failed in that objective and they exposed a weakness at home in the process. All in all, not a bad outcome.

knb said...

I'm fine with dissention John, provided it is factual.

You're proud of Baird, yet he did not accomplish what he set out to do. No, in fact he failed. He left a wake of disaster along the way, but in the end, he did not fulfill his mandate.

His mandate was to get China, India and the US to agree to absolute targets. They did not. He said he would NOT sign on to anything unless they agreed to that.

What are you proud of? That he threw his considerable weight around, walked around in flip-flops, was too afraid to speak with a youth delegation, attended cocktail parties while negotiatons were going on, in general, made a fool of himself and embarrassed the nation?

Harper followers strike me as a myopic bunch. They seem unable to understand the responsibility our behaviour on a world stage carries with it. They view it only through the narrow prism of partisan politics at home.

Now, I mentioned his stated goal, but not his real one. His real goal was to sabotage the entire process and until the eleventh hour, he did his level best to accomplish that. He failed though.

Once much damage had been done, he caved, no doubt on the instruction of Harpo himself. You see, the press was getting wholly unmanageable here at home.

He'll spin like a top when parliament resumes, but the man is an ass and there are just too many people who have a voice in this country who witnessed his disgusting behaviour to allow him to get away with it.

Perhaps calling him out will not happen on a daily basis, but come next election, wait for it.

knb said...

I hear you jay, but there is something that thus far prevents me from doing that.

What you say is absolutely correct. When the media began giving them equal time, they believed that their views had equal value.

They are the only one's who believe that though.

I'm tempted to delete, but the artist in me holds me back from censoring.

We'll see how long that part of my brain stays engaged in these discussions, lol.

knb said...

ottlib: It is frustrating to those of us who want action now but it is the right strategy. The alternative was to let the Bali talks fail and the process to fall.

I sigh, but agree. Good call btw if you had this pegged a while back.

I did not expect Baird to be so incredibly blatant. I've been following blogs and vid's from Bali and simply could not believe what a boor showed himself to be. I knew he was one, but I did not expect that he was arrogant enough to think in this venue he thought his churlish behaviour would be bowed to.

I really want loud voices here in Canada when everyone comes home. Every time Baird or Harper open their yap, I want to hear a credible counter.

During an election? Full on mockery.

The Right is Where its At said...

KNB

"His mandate was to get China, India and the US to agree to absolute targets. They did not. He said he would NOT sign on to anything unless they agreed to that."

No he did not China or India but he got the US in the deal in which the liberals were never able.

"Harper followers strike me as a myopic bunch. They seem unable to understand the responsibility our behaviour on a world stage carries with it. They view it only through the narrow prism of partisan politics at home."

Right we don't understand we don't care cough right.

"He'll spin like a top when parliament resumes, but the man is an ass and there are just too many people who have a voice in this country who witnessed his disgusting behaviour to allow him to get away with it."

"Perhaps calling him out will not happen on a daily basis, but come next election, wait for it."

Yea right Mr.Harper is going to wipe Dion in an election you know it and so does the liberal party this is why there not to eager to go to an election right now.
In Quebec people don't even pay attention to Dion he is a lost caused here.

Come back to parliament what people will be talking is the next budget and more tax cuts.

OTTLIB:

"The facade is gone. The Conservatives have firmly put themselves squarely on the wrong side of this issue and it will cost them during the next election, particularly in Quebec where the Kyoto Protocol and its process is the most popular."

I see your not from Quebec,because you certainly don't understand the French speaking people of Quebec. They loathe Mr.Stéphane Dion. No mater what he says or does it will not work here period.

Sorry I will not be able to answer you anymore this evening because I just got family visit (XMAS Party) so have a very goodnight to all.

ottlib said...

Mr. Baird is a provincial politician and it showed.

His counterparts from other parts of the world ran circles around him.

The US left him isolated after supporting him for two weeks.

The Chinese and the other developing countries played of his stupidity to make themselves look good.

The Europeans succeeded brilliantly in their goals despite his bluster and bafflegab.

It was really a pathetic performance all around for Mr. Baird. The fact those who support the Conservatives fail to see that does indicate they are myopic.

Or judging by the number of trolls patrolling the blogs talking about this issue they tacitly admit Mr. Baird's performance was a disaster and they want to change the channel quick.

My guess is the Conservatives will not talk about this in the coming weeks. Between the talks in Bali and the Mulroney/Shreiber affair they have had a difficult few weeks. They will want to change the conversation so I suspect we will see some big fat funding announcements and more law-and-order announcements over the next couple of months.

However, as you say they will not escape the fallout from Mr. Baird's performance during the next election.

On a related note knb I grew more pleased with Mr. Baird's performance as the Bali talks went on. I knew no sustantive deal would be reached at the end but I also knew that the process would continue. So Mr. Baird's performance was just serving to undermine the last tattered vestiges of credibility the Conservatives had on this issue at home.

It became increasingly apparent to me that the Conservatives were putting their own electoral fortunes at risk without achieving their objectives in Bali.

In short, for their opponents it was win-win.

Oh yes, one more thing. Do not expect this to have any effects on the polls. If it does that will be a bonus but this kind of thing rarely has an immediate effect. These kind of things germinate and then sprout during election time so be patient and do not get too worked up by any polls in the coming weeks that show little to no change.

ottlib said...

The Right is...:

Your gone so you will probably not see this until tomorrow but what the hell I will leave this comment anyway.

First, the electorate in Quebec is way too volatile to take for granted. Mr. Harper was despised by Quebecers at the beginning of the 2006 election and we all know how that worked out. Quebecers change their minds about as often as they change their socks so do not count on Mr. Dion's standing to stay in the basement come election time. Then again I cannot count on it not staying there either but that is sort of my point is it not? You just cannot predict how Quebecers will vote.

Second, Mr. Dion is not the only opponent to Mr. Harper in Quebec. He will have to deal with Gilles Duceppe as well and Mr. Harper has given him alot to work with.

Mr. Baird's performance in Bali has exposed a major weakness of the Conservatives and you can bet all of your Christmas gifts that Mr. Dion and Mr. Duceppe will be exploiting that weakness for all its worth during the next election.

It will have an impact.

Scotian said...

Ottlib:

I'd have to say that so far I can't find a single thing to disagree with you regarding your reading of Bali and this Harper government. I also agree with you regarding the dangers of assuming one knows how the Quebec electorate is going to vote before it does so no matter how obvious it looks going in. There are simply too many examples of why that doesn't work with that electorate even more than most Provinces in this country. As I have said before right now we are in the position the American electorate was regarding GWB during his first term, it was understandable to most people in democracies why he "won" the first time and that it was no endorsement of him so much as repudiation of what was there, same as with this Harper minority. It is whether we show him the door (preferably slamming it not gently closing it) in the next election that will mark when the damage becomes truly long term to our credibility and respect internationally.

Any democracy has this inherent failing within it regarding the election of a new government the first rime around, it is whether they are allowed to continue when they cross certain basic lines or not that it really via reelection that one can truly fear a major cultural shift within a country. For GWB to be reelected (which if you believe it was an honest fair election, something I cannot say I am thanks to the massive lack of paper trails and serious conflicts of interest like the Sec of State in the crucial winning State being the chair of the reelect Bush for that State in each election) after the torture at Abu Ghraib on top of the many other reasons like renditions and Gitmo attached that stain from the government to the people/citizenry, and that is going to take them a long time to have to come to terms with much like Germany and Hitler although not to quite the same degree of severity given the differences between the two. This is not meant as such a comparison, it is just the best way I can think of to illustrate what I am talking about in terms of the type of damage I am talking about and the most current example with is provided by our American friends. It will be what we have to look forward to if Harper returns to government once the next election passes, even a minority will attached significant damage long term, a majority especially so.

It is the level of disconnect from basic realities and the willingness to constantly claim their are under attack from the big bad conspiracies of varying (in the case of NA movement conservatives, both American and Canadian variants Reform/and even more so CA it is liberal, in this country that works with big L as much as little l) natures out to take away their "traditional" way of life and prevent them from preserving "traditional" values that makes these government so dangerous and why they need to be opposed so strongly regardless of their political affiliation/ideology. Extremism is extremism after all, and one thing we as a nation have not been noted for is extremism. To have that on our record as knowingly (which after seeing once with power certainly qualifies as no matter how someone might want to weasel that down the road) endorsing would be extremely damaging to all that we have worked towards for well over the last half century.

Nice work Ottlib, very nice indeed.

KNB:

Great post, but then I have rarely found any of your work to be less than such, whether I comment in them or not should never be taken as a sign of how good I think they are, more a matter of my own interest and expertise and feeling whether I have something to add at that moment. That you generate comments and discussions like the one Ottlib provided here in this thread only underscores the quality of your work IMHO.

knb said...

Well said ottlib.

Mr. Baird is a provincial politician and it showed.

Indeed, I think in many instances that would be an apt term, provincial, for this government in general.

As to the polls, I've given up on them to be honest. I state my disbelief from time to time, but to be honest, I just do not see enough context to them to inspire credibility. Once in a while, when they expose the question asked, I roll my eyes.

Here is the problem though, in my mind. You know how it is said that the more times you repeat something to yourself, the more you believe it? I do not know how often these firms change their sample group, but given the number of polls done for the con's since they took power, it occurs to me that they may just be roaming, hitting specific groups 2 or 3 times, then on to the next.

I do not mean a conspiracy, (before anyone accuses me of that), more of a tactic really.

In the end, what we see in polls means almost nothing to me. To be frank, I find that sad. I wish there was a valid, ethical sort of polling going on. This may sound bizarre, but it would be nice to see a poll that presented fact, ie; the Conservative policy is..., the Liberal policy is..., and so on. Do you agree or disagree with the Conservatives or the Liberals?

That is a simplistic example but I think you follow me. All I see are polls conducted on current media trends. The support of Dion being a weak leader in media coverage is an example. I suspect people who have never heard him would answer yes because that is what they have been told.

In some respects I think we have hit rock bottom in this country and it is time to rise, on many issues.

Media control would be step one.

Dante said...

Lively discussion. Tons of straw man arguments.

Someone answer me this though:
Why should people with different opinions give a rats ass about you climate doomsdayers if you declare that you are unwilling to re-examine your own beliefs?
I can accept I might be wrong but I am certainly allowed my opinion. Instead i hear "The debate is over" and other crap like that.

YOU DON'T HAVE THE FRICKING POWER TO SAY THAT. YOU WILL HAVE TO CONVINCE PEOPLE LIKE ME TO ADVANCE YOUR VIEWS.

The simple reason is that the reins own power in Canada leans my way, not yours. This government is here partially due to MY support. I will continue to support them and you will get jack shit. Moderate your language and engage in civil debate instead of calling people "denyers". You can't win that way.

knb said...

Thanks Scotian. Your point about re-election is poignant.

When I think of the US, they were of course in a state of fear, real and induced when they brought Bush back to power.

It's been obvious to me that the Con's have tried this same strategy, though thankfully we do not have the same context.

We do however have that shrimp of a twitching man in Cabinet named Day, who loves to throw out specious comments. We have Nichols, who before recent times, I thought was pretty honourable, doing the same. Then of course we come to Harper himself. The wimp I saw in High School turned bully in text book form.

All of them are striving to use the "law and order" agenda to paint all other parties, especially the Lib's as weak. Back benchers chime in of course, because we know who most of them are.

It's nonsense of course and we must remain vigilent in telling Canadians the truth. By "we", I simply mean those of us who follow the truth, not a party affiliation.

The next election is crucial to be sure. I'll have more to say on that later.

I leave it to you when you choose to comment. I'm always grateful to have your contribution, but I never judge on which post or why. That is what I love most about people. Sometimes we peruse, sometime we just skim, often we digest and at other times we need to add our voice. I love that.

knb said...

dante, cool it. (well there is a phrase, lol)

If you want to have a civil discussion, fine, but invectives do not further your argument.

The fact is, the only straw man is the argument against the science.

Of course you are entitled to your opinion, but it baffles many of us as to why you who seem to read quite a bit on the subject cannot differentiate fact from fiction.

It's kind of like Day. Did we walk with dinosaurs or not? How old is the world? There are facts and there is fiction.

Oh, I know that you will have ton's of articles that suggest that the science is wrong, but here is the thing...90% of the scientists involved are all peer reviewed. The nonsense your side raises as a counter is neither peer reviewed nor based on sound data. I know it sounds and reads well, but it is nonsense.

Moderate your language and engage in civil debate

Pot meet kettle, sit down and read your comment. Projection is a nasty habit to aquire.

Mushroom said...

"Is this some of the dodge and weave you think he'll use to do nothing muchroom?"

Well, he agreed to a 20 per cent reduction in emissions by 2020 and threw some money around. These money was proposed by the Martin government before it fell. He hopes that we will leave him alone until 2018 at the earliest. By then, Canada would be making oodles of money mining uranium to harness nuclear power.

RuralSandi said...

Ah, Van Loan just announced on Friday that requests to go to Afghanistan have been approved (finally) including all staff necessary etc. Try to stick to some facts there "right is where its at".

Anyone proud of Baird at Bali sure has low standards to say the least. He didn't even attend the negotiations and was too chicken to meet with environment people.

The "deniers" have been duped. Proof - a report on an investigation regarding Bush and the oil companies giving false info - want to check it out, see below (a US government report by the way).

http--oversight.house.gov.documents/20071210101633

In other words - Bush/Republicans and Harper and oil companies have been falsifying info - lying to us.

If you are able to comprehend "right is where its at"....I suggest you read it.

knb said...

Good find Sandi.

The Right is Where its At said...

RuralSandi

"Ah, Van Loan just announced on Friday that requests to go to Afghanistan have been approved (finally) including all staff necessary etc. Try to stick to some facts there "right is where its at".

For your info sandi this is what I said of my post 6:21 PM:

"P.S. I'm still waiting for Mr. Stéphane Dion to visit our brave Man and Women fighting for us in Afghanistan. Oh yea he is to busy!!! I think we could wait until cows come home before he goes."

Its about God damn time isn't Sandi? Where did I say there wasn't any request been made please show me or at least apologize. He could have gone the moment the Liberals have he would. Do you know how it feels when someone says that he is to busy to meet you?

"The "deniers" have been duped. Proof - a report on an investigation regarding Bush and the oil companies giving false info - want to check it out, see below (a US government report by the way)."

What is your problem trying to insult people by calling them who disagree with your views "deniers!" How do you like me calling you people "paranoid"? Would you like it?

Don't give me links here and there,because I could give you links up to the wazoo!!!

"If you are able to comprehend "right is where its at"....I suggest you read it."

I would suggest to you to have a proper link wise ass,and be more respectful. Is it to complicated for you my dear?

Ryan said...

The saddest part for me is the animosity directed towards people with genuine concern for the environment, as well as climate change by these hard-core conservative flag-bearers.

They are terrified at the aspect that cutting CO2 will threaten our pampered, overindulgent lifestyles. We personally pollute in excess, far more than each person in China, and China and India are essentially producing more greenhouse gases to meet our demand for cheap, throwaway goods. Why are the two countries undergoing massive industrialization right now? To produce more goods for our markets. If we didn't demand so much, they wouldn't have to pollute so much. They don't tend to realize that Kyoto is the least we can do to combat climate change, and would leave us with relatively similar lifestyles to those we have now.

The onus is on us to modify our lifestyles to defeat climate change, and if we look at the broader picture, the environment as a whole. If we produce less, and in turn demand less as wealthy countries, we can easily fight climate change with little difficulty, beyond our supposedly God-given right to drive SUVs.

Conservatives end up sounding like pampered babies when it comes to Kyoto. The European countries know that Kyoto is the least they can do and will have the least impact on their own lifestyles, saving them pain down the road. Our government, and that of the United States look like childish buffoons, shouting that if China and India doesn't have to, we don't have to. Because your neighbor won't agree to stop dumping paint down the drain, does that mean it's okay for you?

Don't worry. It'll only sting a little bit. You'll still have your $25 DVD player and you'll still be able to drive across the city to get it. You just might have to drive a car with 4 cylinders, instead.

Ryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
knb said...

Well said ryan. You're right of course. Most bloggers on the right and radio show hosts etc. actually brag about not giving up their hummer or whatever.

It is sad and it either shows an ignorance to the facts or a willful blindness.

Ryan said...

I'd prefer to combine the two into willful ignorance. What I don't know can't hurt me, and it means I'm right and justified in my world view. Everything in the world is as it should be, essentially. It's what being a Conservative is all about.

ottlib said...

The irony ryan is we are going to pay for causing our planet to heat up regardless of what we do now.

What is at question is how much.

In the past I have likened the warnings we are receiving about global warming to the oil light coming on while driving.

When that happens you have a decision. Stop and check your oil or keep driving and hope for the best.

Of course, if you take the cautious approach it will probably cost you some money, if for nothing else another litre of oil. However, if you ignore it you will be on the hook for a whole new engine.

That is where we are at now. To prevent further damage to the atmosphere it is going to cost the world a great deal. However, if we ignore the warnings and hope for the best it is going to cost us a hell of a lot more. Or more accurately, it is going to cost my new grand-niece a hell of a lot more because by the time the full impact of this is felt I will be in my dotage or in my grave. Either way I will not care.

I find it very interesting that the Conservatives lead the battle to make the national debt an issue in the '90s, arguing that we were mortgaging our childrens' and grandchildrens' future. It is amazing that they do not see the same dynamic at play in the case of global warming.

With either a national monetary debt or a global carbon debt, we are mortgaging their future.

knb said...

Indeed ryan. The lack of intellectual curiousity or rather the willful lack, is at once astonishing and tragic.

I do not remember how old you are, but the fact that these individuals control the future of the planet with such disregard, is profoundly disturbing.

I have no children, but I have nieces and nephews. I can only assume that they will have children.

It makes me sick to think that they will inherit this childish hubris.

knb said...

Great analogy ottlib, though I'd say more than mortgaging. I think we are setting them up for foreclosure.

It's beyond comprehension, but here we are.

Congrat's on your grand-niece!

.

Ryan said...

My question is whether the future will look more like Blade Runner or Mad Max.