No, it turns out. Paul Douglass pointed me to this very interesting piece in Foreign Policy, from which I take a brief quote:

… The good neighbor has banked its economy on the cursed elixir of political dysfunction — oil. Flush with visions of becoming a global energy superpower, Canada’s government has taken up with pipeline evangelists, petroleum bullies, and climate change skeptics. Turns out the Boy Scout’s not just hooked on junk crude — he’s become a pusher. And that’s not even the worst of it.

With oil and gas now accounting for approximately a quarter of its export revenue, Canada has lost its famous politeness. Since the Conservative Party won a majority in Parliament in 2011, the federal government has eviscerated conservationists, indigenous nations, European commissioners, and just about anyone opposing unfettered oil production as unpatriotic radicals. It has muzzled climate change scientists, killed funding for environmental science of every stripe, and in a recent pair of unprecedented omnibus bills, systematically dismantled the country’s most significant long-cherished environmental laws.

The author of this transformation is Prime Minister Stephen Harper …

I understand Canada is going to start up its own version of FOX News!

Only kidding. Well, they probably already have one. Point is, go read this, it’s interesting.

Comments

  1. #1 Andy Skuce
    July 2, 2013

    Canada does have its own version of Fox News, alas.

    http://www.sunnewsnetwork.ca/

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun_News_Network

    It even includes people like Ezra Levant, the Ethical Oil guy.

  2. #2 Lars
    July 2, 2013

    Greg, we are still inherently nicer, smarter, gooder, etc. (than who – the average bear?) – unfortunately, all that anyone abroad sees when they look at Canada these days is a vista of the pimply pallid buttocks of Steven Harper and his party of epsilon semi-morons, bared not only at the rest of the world but at those of us here who disagree with them. Actually, he has degraded the national discourse to the point where I, a true Canadian, do not blush at your unearned complimenting adjectives but instead merely take them as given, merited – before Harper any of us would have been too modest to accept such praise.
    But seriously, this guy and his bottom-trawling fellow-travellers have gotta go – they are really stinking the place out. For what it’s worth, our first-past-the-post electoral system makes it possible for a party with a minority of votes (around 30%, in the ReformaTories’ case, in the last election) to take a majority of seats. So, while he trashes our institutions and there’s not a lot that can be done to stop him until the next election, he and his minions do not represent the majority of Canadian. Who, while nice etc., are getting mightily pissed-off – few of us want a foreigner looking at Harper (or any of the Con-bots) and thinking “So, that’s what a Canadian is like, eh?”

  3. #3 Greg Laden
    July 2, 2013

    Now you know what it is like to have a certain kind of person “leading” your country!

  4. #4 phanmo
    July 3, 2013

    @ Lars
    Hear, hear!
    I can’t vote for national elections anymore, as there’s a 5 year limit on being resident abroad, but I managed to squeak in under the wire for the last elections. Unfortunately Harper was reelected anyways!
    Here in France, the “new” point of view of the Canadian government hasn’t quite percolated down yet so I haven’t had to suffer what I saw Americans suffering during the Dubya years (being held accountable for what a government you didn’t vote for does) but it’ll come sooner or later unless the Canadian government changes radically. Muzzling tax-payer financed scientists and slashing environmental programs while vehemently defending asbestos exports to developing nations is not my Canada.