I really do prefer the train... I am now squidged into a small seat, hoping to protect my laptop from any further reclining of the seat in front of me and heading (sorry by air) to Edmonton. I'll be at this weekend's Alberta Green Party AGM and I'm really looking forward to it. From there I am off to Amsterdam for meetings of the Earth Charter International Council!
As of today, I have been leader of the Green Party of Canada for a full month.
I am so proud of the work we did today at the launch of our detailed Green Party Green Plan document. We called it "GP Squared," knowing the Harper government will be releasing a Green Plan 2 document very soon. (See how ours is exponentially better!)
I stressed in our press conference (which we were told had more media than one of Jack Layton's recently) that the $1 billion in cuts to good programs announced by the Harper government this week—for the status of women Canada, indigenous health programs, response to pine beetle outbreak, summer jobs for students, programs for gays and lesbians, for credit unions and coops in Atlantic Canada, and on and on... could have been protected by simply removing the $1.4 billion in subsidies to the richest corporations in the world operating in the tar sands.
How those Conservative cabinet ministers can stand up, as they did in question period, and defend such nasty cuts by saying they want to ensure every tax dollar is well spent when they are larding millions upon millions to the oil patch is a mystery. No real regard for truth. The real motive seemed to be a grudge against every minority group (although women are not much of a minority!) that benefited from those programs. In other anti-gay/lesbian/women's rights news, Environment minister Rona Ambrose just chose Darrel Ried of "Focus on the Family" as her new chief of staff.
This is a short blog (like normal people apparently write) to urge you to go to the GP Squared document on this webiste, read it and talk it up. We need Canadians to really understand the threat if the Harper-Ambrose Green Plan pretends to deal with smog and ignores the climate crisis. If you do not reduce GHG, any smog plan is doomed to failure. Please watch for opportunities in the coming days for letters to the editors of your local and national papers. The report of the Auditor General on previous government programming and mis-spent money gives Greens an opportunity to speak out about what should be in a real Green Plan!!
PS: In case you had not heard, my cross country train trip will be completed over Thanksgiving weekend as I take the train from Montréal (on the 7th) to rallies in Moncton and Truro on Sunday the 8th, on to Cape Breton by car (NO TRAIN SERVICE TO Cape Breton anymore!) and on to Halifax for a rally at 4:20 Monday, Thanksgiving Day!
Grâce à Dieu!