Partisans Abroad

harper-brain2

Does anyone else find it more than a little embarrassing and unseemly that our current prime minister frequently uses his media soapbox at international summits such as the G8 as an opportunity to take cheap (and erroneous) pot-shots at his political opponents and economic policy critics at home?

I thought Bob Rae summed up the essence of the problem quite well:

”I think all Canadians have to recognize that we have the smallest man on the world stage that it’s possible to imagine, and that’s Stephen Harper. He never misses an opportunity to stoop. Not to conquer, just to throw mud.”

The Americans used to have an unwritten policy that “partisanship ends at the water’s edge” — a quaint notion perhaps, but alas, being a total douchebag, one that Stephen Harper has never seemed able to grasp.

Gone With the Wind

After spending nearly $60 million relentlessly advertising his modestly named “Pickens Plan” during the last presidential election cycle, former Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens announced earlier this week that he’s abruptly scrapped further work on the ambitious mega-project.

Citing various reasons including not being able to finance the project in today’s credit market, as well as being unable to build the transmission lines needed for what had been touted as the world’s largest wind farm, Pickens nonetheless claimed that his efforts to raise energy awareness in America had “made great progress.”

Indeed. Pickens will now be receiving a vastly increased level of government subsidization from Congress for the natural gas infrastructure part of his “energy independence plan” which, quite unsurprisingly, the multifarious tentacles of his corporate interests all stand to profit handsomely from — with the generous assistance of taxpayers, of course.

An elaborate bait-and-switch scheme, perhaps? Who knows… But whatever the case, it points out the naivety of assuming there are any easy answers or morally “good” solutions when it comes to the issue of developing so-called alternative energy sources within a market-based economy.