Asking the questions others de-Klien to

Edmonton - Monday, October 21, 2002 - by: Ron Thornton


After an initial dynamic stand and a passing remark concerning independence, it would seem our groundhog saw his shadow and headed back into the den for an extended Alberta winter of discontent. How else can one explain Ralph Klein's exuberance in providing an Alberta-made answer to Kyoto? Why load the gun that is going to be aimed at your head, unless you are loading it with blanks?




By simply going along with the charade, as many view the whole Kyoto initiative to be, is our provincial government dusting off the welcome mat for yet another plundering of the Alberta economy? When the gloves came off, was our defender exposed as being a mere pretender with a willingness to please, appease, and get down on his knees? Despite the questions many have, including scientists, as to whether the hoopla over greenhouse gas emissions is about a clean environment or a mechanism to clean out the industrialized world's pockets, it would seem that our white knight has mounted his charger without figuring out if he was facing a fierce environmental dragon or nothing more than a load off the honey wagon. In a province where Progressive Conservative was thought to stand for something more than "politically correct", some are wondering if Klein didn't simply roll over and buy into the malarkey. This is surprising, as Albertans usually don't fall in line until they get the answers to some tough questions. Maybe times have changed.



what if
we did

Unlike some, I wonder what would happen if we did absolutely nothing in regards to greenhouse gases? Would anything happen that hasn't happened for millions of years, on its own cycle, considering the greenhouse gas contribution by man is minuscule at best? We didn't start the ice age nor did we end it. Mother nature in its splendor has provided climatic change to us and our cave-dwelling ancestors, and continues to contribute 98% of the planet's greenhouse gas emissions. If we implemented Kyoto to its fullest, I wonder what would happen? Would we reduce anything other than our standard of living? Would you still have your job and your home after Kyoto's economic affects become fully known? Does anyone have any definitive answers? If not, why not?




Where are we in the development of alternative, affordable, more environmentally friendly fuels? Why are we not allocating world-wide resources to their development within the decade for the benefit of all mankind, rather than advocating a system of economic discrimination that promises to solve nothing? It makes a mockery of the Kyoto Protocol when its much flogged environmental concerns seem to play a poor second fiddle to the hopes of those who have failed to evolve and advance in such areas as democratic principles, human rights, and technology to get their hands on the cold, hard cash of those nations that have. Why is this the case?




Over the past thirty years, while feeling more and more alienated, Alberta has coughed up nearly $200-billion in transfer payments to keep our fellow Canadians out of the poor house. Our reward, it would seem, is to see our friends, those blessed with hydro power, rubbing their hands together in glee over the perceived gains they see coming their way, even if it bleeds Albertans white. Of course, with the destruction of that golden goose, the loss of Canadian industry and jobs, and some massive hikes in taxation that will hit home for everyone, the devastating results will be evident soon enough, yet far too late to do anything about it.




With the skies above Alberta enjoying concentrations of greenhouse gases on par with those over India and China, less than those suffered by Nova Scotians, and with Toronto-like smog conditions something foreign to those who reside in such cities as Edmonton and Calgary; it makes many Albertans question the validity of the Kyoto Accord, question its true agenda, and question the motives of those on the environmental gravy train who back it.




Many Albertans question it but, as it would seem from reports out of the Premier's office, the perception has been left that such questioning and the demand for some coherent answers is an activity not shared by everyone.


Ron Thornton



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