Thursday, May 03, 2007

Baird Bites Own Tail

Try to spot the logical inconsistency. You appear before a Senate committee and unleash a scathing attack on the consequences of Kyoto implementation. To add weight to your thesis, you consult with a group of independent, "respected", economists who detail the impact. You then use said economists on the Environment Canada website, to further your case:
The Government of Canada study – supported by leading, independent Canadian economists – shows the cost of compliance with Bill C-288 at this time would result in devastating impacts for Canadian families, jobs and the economy.

You even give names:
This study, prepared by the Government of Canada, was validated by Don Drummond, Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist at Toronto Dominion Bank Financial Group; Jean-Thomas Bernard, Professor, Department of Economics, Laval University; Mark Jaccard, Professor, School of Resource and Environmental Management, Simon Fraser University; David Keith, Canada Research Chair in Energy and the Environment, University of Calgary; and, Christopher Green, Professor, Department of Economics, McGill University.

You go farther and provide another link titled "Key Quotes from Validators", which offers various quotes from said economists. You clearly put a great deal of stock in the conclusions of these people.

Fast forward only two weeks later. Those wonderful, respected economists that provided the intellectual underpinning for your earlier arguments, have now come out with some new thoughts, as they relate to your recently released disaster, known as the Green Plan:
Economics experts question Tory environmental approach
Mike De Souza, CanWest News Service
Published: Wednesday, May 02, 2007
OTTAWA Economists who endorsed a recent government report assessing the economic impact of achieving Canadas international Kyoto protocol commitments are skeptical about the new Conservative approach to fighting global warming, a survey by CanWest News Service has revealed.

Now what do you do? Apparently, when asked the following day in Question Period, you respond with:

"Baird rejects economists criticism of government environmental tactics"

OTTAWA -- Environment Minister John Baird is rejecting criticism from a group of independent economists who were used by the Harper government less than two weeks ago to endorse warnings from the Conservative that respecting the Kyoto protocol on climate change would cause a recession in Canada.

You reject your former supporters, you bite the hand that fed you, you make NO SENSE WHATSOEVER. Such is the reality, trying to defend a universally (besides four oil execs and Buzz Hargrove) panned embarrassment of a plan. I recommend some quiet editing of the government website, because clearly these men aren't the economists we thought two weeks ago.


Mentarch said...

Well put!

This is neocon duperie at its typical best, especially with regards to Climate Change.

Steve V said...

Important to remember, that in subsequent interviews, many of these economists who supported the Baird "sky is falling" Kyoto lecture later qualified their conclusions as based on pre-determined criteria, which has since been shown to be partial at best, intellectually dishonest at worst.

The difference this time, these economists had no parameters, just an opinion.

Scotian said...

As I have mentioned before, when the underlying assumptions/premises are bad it matter not how good the reasoning skills brought to bear, the end result is still garbage. Now while I have said that primarily referring to Tomm, it also applies here. Baird tightly defined the working parameters for these economists of repute and limited them to those parameters regardless of their actual merits or lack thereof. The end result was the dishonest piece of fiction we saw presented as a sober hard look at the costs of Kyoto. These economists had their professional reputations used and tossed away in this last fortnight by this action and then to compound it by trashing their professional credibility/standing to be taken as credible because they shredded their examination of what Baird released to the public via the same reasoning skills and experience that caused the CPC government to use them for this fictitious study of Baird's in the first place is truly offensive, yet all too typical of the Harper CPC.

This is something I find underlies a lot of why the more capable reasoners within the CPC base are so able to buy what the CPC is selling. When you tightly define your underlying premises like that and refuse to consider anything that conflicts with these underlying assumptions/beliefs like the Liberal media bias/conspiracy, the homosexual conspiracy for judicial takeover, the cabal of socialists out to create the communist vision here, the belief that CPC is actively out to destroy Conservatives and this nation, etc then you can be a genius at reasoning and still be as wildly disconnected from factual reality as we see from these folks. I know that many progressives find it hard to understand how otherwise nice sensible decent folks can buy into some of the stuff Harper and the CPC sells when it is clearly not supported by factual realities, but when you only permit yourself to consider party/movement approved sources as credible and all others as suspect (no matter what their political affiliations/partisanship or even the lack of such as demonstrated by their history/record) this is what you will get.

The CPC has done the same thing with the environment that they have done with so many others, as you have chronicled here at this blog Steve V. They have declared any of the credible voices backed by near total scientific consensus regarding global warming and man's role in it to be suspect for various reasons from ideological blindness yet well intentioned to utterly venial and corrupt/evil. That those fighting these forces are the only ones with real credibility, for why else would they fight so hard as such a tiny minority (also a subtle comparison/identification with Conservatives/CPCers themselves and their minority position within our society) than if they truly believed they were right? The fact it happens to suit the ideological/political agendas of NA conservatives and their energy sector allies (and Harper is definitely one of them, and more so than the Libs ever were which is more than a little disturbing given they were because of their history of being the government through most of our history than anything else) is just a happy coincidence and that does not influence their truths, unlike all those politically tainted consensus scientists that believe in the global warming conspiracy/"myth".

So we see Baird feeding this group again and also hoping that enough voters will fall into that group if exposed to a strong marketing campaign with a superficial appearance of substance and take it at face value instead of examining it more critically. This is a ploy done in American politics all the time since it is well documented that down there the voters tend to pay significantly less attention to the actions of their government than in this country. So the banking on the ignorance/stupidity of the average voters to not recognize this playing with them until after it is well too late and the CPC has had its time in power (especially majority, but even in minority long enough will cause irreparable damages given the power of the PMO/Executive as it currently exists/operates in our system) is yet another commonality with what we have seen with the GOP and especially Bushco from the beginning of the so called 1994 Republican revolution in Congress to what we are seeing unravel today.

These economists are simply the latest sacrifices on that quest for power from the Harper Cons that has been there since the party was born in treachery and betrayal for the same underlying reason, to gain federal government/power. This is also how a tactical operation/government works, they care nothing for long term implications, it is what they feel works best for them at that moment no matter how contradictory it may be and no matter who is hurt by it so long it is not one of their own true believers that is. Not that this should come as any shock to anyone, Harper has long since revealed his true colours for all to see if they only look with a clear mind, hi shistory is out there for anyone to find with a minimum of effort. His lies for power like with Grewal demonstrate something truly frightening about just how far he will go. If you will use forged evidence to claim specific criminal allegations against a sitting government/PM, make three weeks of political hay out of it and nearly win a confidence vote the day after the initial "revelations", have it exposed as a fraud, and then claim that no one in the CPC did anything wrong/illegal despite the fact from the moment of creation/recording to the initial release of the supposedly full complete and unedited recordings they were in CPC hands alone.

There is no way it was not CPC hands that edited the records, Harper had to know that given the chain of custody making it impossible to be anyone else, and yet he covered it up and claimed any suggestion of any wrongdoing was either the Liberal war room or the Liberal media bias/conspiracy at work and that there was nothing the CPC did wrong whatsoever and why aren’t the media more interested in the Liberal scandals? That revealed Harper to be something truly dangerous to me beyond anything I had ever thought about him. Up until then I thought he was an honest ideologue/true believer with a certain amount of personal integrity/honour (even if I profoundly disagreed with/opposed him), that incident though showed me he was something far less honourable, far more dangerous, and most especially far darker than anything I had believed before. it is why I have never stopped referring to it where applicable, it was truly revealing of something no Canadian political leader had ever considered/dared do before, truly unprecedented in nature and the ugliest political dirty trick I have ever seen used in this nation federally by anyone.

This idiocy from Baird is just more of the same old Harper, create his own facts, create his own facts about what Liberals believe/say and dismiss anything that dares disagree with those so called facts no matter how grounded in actual reality they actually are. I feel for these economists, they have been very badly treated, however I doubt this went unnoticed within their profession and I think that will come back to haunt Harper and company. This government is like the ultimate bad karma generator, and if Wiccan three fold law principle is on the mark the balancing that will come from Harper and the CPC will be extreme, let's just hope the country is not forced to pay too much of that price as well. The sooner we can eliminate Harper and his conservativism and especially the way he practices politics as a credible force in our political environment the cheaper the price for us all. Even if that lets Harper off some of the worst he has coming it is well worth it, and he will still have a large bill coming his way given what he has already done to date.

Steve V said...

I don't really think Baird has a choice, afterall he can't acknowledge the criticism, despite the obvious duplicity. It's not just these economists, the negative reaction comes from other quarters.

Having said that, you would have thought Baird would give economists a detailed examination to shore up some of the loopholes and gain some allies. This action would assume that he was genuinely interested in presenting a credible plan, as opposed to a political document that was intended to neutralize a weakness.

Anonymous said...

Bring back Rona!

Sheeple said...

Yo Steve,

It's about time to take to writing for local newspapers isn't it?

I'm just writing a piece now about how this government is engaged in the creation of its own version of reality.

Steve V said...

The Pennysaver?

Sheeple said...

What's the pennysaver?

Steve V said...

A paper they deliver for free in the mail, that sells used items :)