Re: "Religion and politics make frightful bedfellows," Sept. 12.
Jack Knox's column illustrated the opposite of what the headline said, at least as far as Canada is concerned.
Knox cites Trudeau's Catholic-based belief in the sanctity of the individual leading to the Charter of Rights, and Baptist Tommy Douglas, who championed Medicare and whose Christian principles are embedded in the social philosophy of the New Democrats. There are many other examples.
And today we have Elizabeth May, who is again illustrating for us that politicians whose lives are faith-based can have an effective part to play in moulding our country's character.
Far from the suggestion that religion and politics are chalk and cheese, we have throughout Canada's history been blessed to have many political leaders whose strong faith convictions have underpinned their political lives to our benefit.
A leading Canadian climate scientist today slammed the search for the long-lost 1845 Franklin Expedition as a veiled front for future oil and gas extraction in the high Arctic.
Andrew Weaver, a professor in the University of Victoria school of earth and ocean sciences, called the search for the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror a “joke” during an off-the-cuff speech during a noontime rally in downtown Victoria.
Researchers in white lab jackets, Raffi Cavoukian, a.k.a Raffi the children’s entertainer, Saanich-Gulf Islands MP Elizabeth May and Saanich South MLA Lana Popham, joined Weaver in denouncing cutbacks in environmental research spending, and the fear cultivated among federal scientists about speaking publicly about research that might contradict the Conservative government’s economic goals.
“Why do citizens across this country have to rally for science? We have to rally against ignorance,” May told the crowd. "Canadians are being put at risk by this shortsighted, reckless Stephen Harper government."
While Green party leaders called for all political parties in Canada to come out against the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion project on Wednesday, a representative from the company took issue with their facts.
Federal Green Party MP Elizabeth May, BC Green Party leader Jane Sterk and Vancouver City Councillor and federal Green Party deputy leader Adriane Carr joined first nations leaders to state their opposition to the company's plan to expand their capcity for transporting oil from Alberta to Metro Vancouver and beyond.
"We would end up with as many as 300 to 360 super tankers a year trying to get out from under the Second Narrows, under Railway Bridge and under Lions Gate Bridge," May said.
Calgary author Chris Turner's move to federal politics was made official Wednesday as Green party Leader Elizabeth May swooped into the city to confirm him as the party's candidate for the Calgary Centre by-election.
In a statement, May said Turner's candidacy has created "real momentum in Calgary Centre."
The party, which holds only one federal seat, promises it will be the most deep-pocketed Green campaign ever seen in the city.
Calgary author Chris Turner’s widely discussed move to federal politics will become official Wednesday night when Green Leader Elizabeth May confirms he’s her party’s candidate for the Calgary Centre byelection.
In a news release, May said the news of Turner’s candidacy has created “real momentum in Calgary Centre.” The party, which currently holds only one federal seat, promises it will be the most deep-pocketed Green campaign ever seen in the city.
“I am so excited about the prospect of serving in Parliament with Chris Turner,” May said.
Representatives of federal, provincial and municipal Green parties voiced their collective opposition today (September 12) to plans to twin the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby.
“This proposal would dramatically increase the number of super tankers carrying bitumen diluent—it would expand the size of tankers leaving the port of Vancouver and we would end up with as many as 300 to 360 super tankers a year, trying to get out through the Second Narrows Bridge, under the railway bridge, and under Lion’s Gate Bridge,” said Elizabeth May, the MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, at a news conference in downtown Vancouver.
“These are areas with significant tidal influences," she added. "The precision of movement of these super tankers would have to be 100 percent perfect every day of the year for us to avoid a serious accident that could foul our waterways, our beaches and our shorelines from the Lower Mainland to the Gulf Islands."
There's no doubt which side Elizabeth May is taking in the War on Science.
"Stop the Harper Conservatives' assault on scientific research and informed decision-making," declares the Green Party leader's website, advertising a Sept. 14 rally in downtown Victoria.
A piece she wrote in Monday's Hill Times, the Ottawa-based publication for political junkies, begins in a similar vein: "While the Harper Conservatives seem allergic to any kind of science to monitor and expand our knowledge of life on Earth. -"
Green Party of Canada Leader Elizabeth May is gearing up for the three by-elections (yet to be called) that she hopes could double her caucus of one. She feels the Greens have a chance in Calgary Centre, the riding formerly represented by Conservative Lee Richardson, who resigned to work for Alberta Premier Alison Redford, and in Victoria, which became vacant after NDP MP and deputy Speaker Denise Savoie stepped down for health reasons. One of the advantages of the Victoria riding for May is that it borders her own riding, and she won’t have to get on a plane to help with the campaign. Flying can be a problem for May. “I’m too afraid of flying to sleep,” she says. When she takes the red-eye from B.C. to Ottawa she is pretty much up for 24 hours—a skill, she notes, that has its perks: “That’s why I’m so good at voting all night.”
The summer newsletter from Saanich-Gulf Islands MPElizabeth May was recently mailed to constituents, and is also available online. The theme for this edition is health, in response to the 33% of survey respondents who selected this as their preferred topic for the next newsletter. There is also information about the riding redistribution, bills tabled in Parliament, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal Award Ceremony in September, as 30 SGI constituents are to receive the medal! A web-friendly version is at: www.elizabethmaymp.ca/health or follow the link from www.islandtides.com.
The proposed purchase of Calgary-based Nexen Inc, Canada’s 12th-largest energy company, by the China National Offshore Oil Company, CNOOCLtd., for $15.1- billion (US) should be setting off alarms bells, stated Green Party Leader Elizabeth May, Saanich-Gulf Islands MP.
‘This has been described as the largest takeover by a Chinese company in the world, so very serious questions must be raised about the wisdom of such an unprecedented move,’ May stated. ‘We simply cannot allow strategic energy resources to disappear from Canadian control at such a rate and level with no real oversight.’
State-owned CNOOC was the first Chinese company to make a major acquisition in the Canadian oil industry when it purchased a 17% interest in MEG Energy for $150 million in 2005. Then, in 2011, it expanded by acquiring OPTI Canada for $2.1 billion, giving it 35% of key assets like the Long Lake oil sands facility. Nexen controls and operates the remaining 65% of that site.
Like Patrick Brown, my Canada ‘puts human values first…a vision far beyond that of an ‘energy superpower’ or a colonial source of unprocessed raw materials’.
Where do I see the ‘loyalty to an unprecedented idea of complexity, which in turn meant that everyone, leaders in particular, would have to discipline themselves through restraint’ in today’s Canada?
Without a doubt, Elizabeth May is the politician who comes to mind first. She shows us how to resist the bullying of the Harper regime with the fundamental tools of nonviolence: an ability to listen to all points of view, to do huge amounts of solid research and to share the conclusions of that listening and research. Her commitment to the public good, rather than personal or partisan success, is exemplified by inviting a former NDP MP, now Independent, Bruce Hyer, and another wonderful person, Stéphane Dion, to speak at the Green Convention. I am sure all three would heartily agree with something Dion once said to a friend, who was wondering if the work had been worth it: ‘It is never a waste of time when you are doing the right thing’.