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I remember seeing a For Sale sign on an old 2002 model car that read: “The Queen rode in this car in 2002. It starts, it runs, it stops.” The sales tactics were both funny and original, but at the end of the day, they were still selling an old, junkie car.

Similarly, Canadians are constantly told about the value of environmental strategies, but at the end of the day we’re receiving a much different outcome.

For example, this is a comment the former CEO of the World Wildlife Fund Canada made in 2012: “We don’t think there ought to be a carbon-based energy industry by the middle of this century. That’s our policy in Canada. We think the oil sands have expanded too rapidly without a serious plan for environmental remediation … we don’t think it’s up to us to decide whether there should be another route for a pipeline, because the real alternative is not an alternative route – it’s an alternative economy.”

He left his position as CEO with an extremely large severance package. His name is Gerald Butts, and he is now senior political advisor, and close friend to our prime minister. The World Wildlife Fund is funded by the Tides Foundation; both are registered charitable organizations.

The previous government was beginning the process of checking registered charities in Canada to look for those that were exploiting loopholes in the Canadian charities law that work against Canadians. However, all that came to a grinding halt when the new government took over.

Thanks to Canadian, Vivien Krause, the pathway of dollars from organizations like the Tides Foundation is well documented, as it moves money around to various environmental causes. Some of those causes are legitimate, but many whole heartedly agree with Gerald Butts regarding the need for “an alternative economy” rather than a pipeline in Canada.

Here’s an example of funds dribbling down from the Tides Foundation, to a group called “Organizing for Change”. In 2011 this group got people to temporarily join the B.C. Liberal party in order to determine who would become the next Premier of B.C.

Meanwhile, legitimate groups like the Canadian Taxpayer Foundation is being fined $6000 by the government of Alberta for putting up a billboard to campaign against the carbon tax. Alberta has a gag law that states anyone who spends more than $1000 to publicize their position on an “issue with which a registered party or politician is associated” is engaging in political advertising.

Nevertheless, Canadians are taking bold steps forward. The group “Suits and Boots” newly formed in 2018, has already convinced the Canadian Senate to conduct committee hearings across Canada regarding the anti-pipeline Bill C-69. They’re asking people to contact Senators Rosa Galvez, Jane Cordy and Michael MacDonald requesting the hearings be held in Saskatchewan, and asking them to invite Suits and Boots to the hearings.

There’s also a new political action committee (PAC) called the Buffalo Project that has recently been founded by six like-minded Alberta businessmen, representing the oil and gas sector, agriculture, forestry, cattle and grain producers. These men were tired of “continually being ignored by the federal government as to our hopes to try and keep confederation together and treat us equally”, according to one of the founders.

Co-founder of the group said, “We all thought the brightest tool in the shed was ex-premier Brad Wall to talk about these issues.” Though Brad Wall doesn’t have a formal role in the group, he helped formulate the group and advises them on occasion, as does businessman Brett Wilson. The group plans to be involved in both the Alberta election and the federal election.

As for the rest of us, we can team up with these groups, that are charitable organizations possessing knowledge and integrity. We can be encouraged to see corruption, not only exposed, but well documented. We can be encouraged to see Canadians get up off the couch and begin taking action against the “it starts, it runs, it stops” attack on our energy sector.

For more, visit KindersleySocial.ca/Joan

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