In the Edmonton Journal David Staples says it out loud. Greta Thunberg has gone off the beam and some “knowledgeable adult” needs to explain economics and history to her. He makes the usual PC noises to clear the way for this argument. But his conclusion is one worth quoting: “The remedies put forward by Thunberg and her extremist bubble look to be far more deadly than the disease of climate change itself.”
Staples starts the piece by denouncing an ugly cartoon of Ms. Thunberg that apparently made the rounds among what he decries as the “bozo” crowd. And he endorses the energy transition supposedly going on, saying approvingly that “Alberta’s response to climate change is increasingly sound and serious.” But once he’s said all that, he says some other stuff too that too few people seem brave enough to say.
With respect to her call in Davos in February that “We must forget about net zero. We need real zero” he asks in dismay “Could it be that not one person has ever told her that fossil fuel use has been a crucial driver for billions of people to move from wrenching poverty into better health and welcome prosperity?” To her face possibly not. And because of that she has no idea that she is pushing what turned out to be some very ugly ideologies.
In November, Thunberg and two other activists called for social revolution in a post at Project Syndicate. The goal, they said, was “to change everything.” “Action must be powerful and wide-ranging. After all, the climate crisis is not just about the environment. It is a crisis of human rights, of justice and of political will. Colonial, racist, and patriarchal systems of oppression have created and fuelled it. We need to dismantle them all.” Again, what kind of bubble does Thunberg live in where she’s evidently unaware of the misery that’s been caused by well-meaning but radical revolutions, from France in 1789 to Venezuela in the early 2000s?
Remember Churchill’s line that “A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject.” And it’s interesting in this context because at CDN we try to discourage people from calling climate change a “hoax” or a screen for some conspiracy or another involving globalists, communists and the like. We think the problem is misplaced sincerity, and want to debate facts and logic not motives and financing. But it’s a fact that if people on one side of the debate won’t practice good political hygiene, we’re all in danger of getting dragged into the fever swamps.
To repeat, Staples gives every evidence of believing man-made climate change is a real problem requiring real solutions. He boasts that in Alberta “We’re joining the coalition of Canadian governments supporting new nuclear development, which is almost certainly our single greatest hope to achieve net zero 2050 goals. We’ve put a hefty emissions tax on our own oil production and have an ongoing laser focus on reducing oilsands productions emissions.” And he’s so woke he argues against divesting from Canadian hydrocarbons because it “would immediately see a clampdown on oil production in countries like Canada where social justice is respected, shifting production to places where women, LGBTQ, religious minorities and political opposition are under grave threat, such as Russia and oil dictatorships in Iran and Saudi Arabia.” See? He supports climate change action and human rights.
So when he says “Thunberg’s winning streak should alarm reasonable people. In recent months she has put forward a series of dangerous ideas” those on his side should listen.