The Saskatchewan government opened its Appeal Court challenge to the federal carbon tax by more or less throwing in the towel, saying "This is not a case about whether climate change is real or not. The government of Saskatchewan is not made up of a bunch of climate change deniers." (Boo, deniers! You stink!) So we have a crisis threatening civilization caused by substances that cross provincial and national borders but the national government can’t regulate them because… because… we really hate carbon taxes and want to solve the problem with something else vague and unfocused that we know will save the Earth and not hurt a bit.
There’s something about climate change that seems to inhibit clarity of thought and speech. The Trudeau administration, for instance, says it’s just about worse than the worst thing ever and so, in addition to hallucinating an increase in floods and forest fires, it insists on imposing a carbon tax so small, starting at just $20/tonne or 4.4 cents per litre of gas that it can’t possibly affect anything. (On Valentine’s Day, gas in Ottawa was selling for under 90 cents a litre.) Except the mental equilibrium of those who respond that yes, we have a massive crisis on our hands then reject that tax in favour of things that will accomplish even less at higher cost while claiming raising the price of gas about 10% of the way back to where it was this summer will crush the economy like an insect. (Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe even objects to the Trudeau carbon tax because it will make everything good more expensive “without significantly reducing emissions” whereas if that was the goal it ought to be higher, unless you’re a denier.)
You could almost get the feeling that they aren’t serious.
Especially when you hear the New Brunswick attorney general’s office, intervening in the case, claim that "Giving Canada this degree of regulatory authority over (greenhouse gas emissions) will result in the limitless, intrusive federal regulatory capability over provincial affairs. It only begins here."
Bosh. The Canadian government has clear constitutional authority over international affairs and over matters of national importance, especially as our Constitution grants all residual powers to the centre not, like the American, to the subordinate governments. And if a gas that seeps across provincial and international borders laying everything waste is not a matter of national importance it is very difficult to imagine anything that could be. “Invasion from space: Federal or provincial?” (Like War of the Worlds except instead of a virus, boredom destroys the invaders.)
It would be very helpful if people would sort themselves into two camps, the one maintaining that man-made global warming is an existential crisis requiring drastic action and the other disputing the evidence and logic instead of just whinging about the policy.