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Shields goes after radical environmentalists

Posted on March 14, 2024 by Vauxhall Advance

By Cal Braid
Vauxhall Advance
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

In his February newsletter, Martin Shields, MP for Bow River, provoked the current federal leadership on behalf of his constituents, calling out the NDP-Liberal ‘coalition’ for what be believes to be foolish extremism.

Shields stirred the pot in the newsletter by declaring, ‘The NDP Wants to Put YOU in JAIL for Supporting the Energy Industry.’ “I wish that headline was (an) exaggeration. It’s not,” he stated. “If you don’t believe me, read the text of Bill C-372, a Private Member’s Bill from radical NDP MP Charlie Angus that says advertising the energy industry should come with a maximum $1.5 million fine and up to two years in jail!”

He believes the NDP-Liberal coalition “has always wanted to kill the energy industry,” and cites  Prime Minister Trudeau as saying he wants to “phase out” the oil & gas industry. “Since then, it’s been policy after policy to regulate, limit, or outright destroy the great Canadian energy industry that has provided for thousands of Canadian families over generations.”

He lamented Bill C-69 –the ‘no more pipelines act,’ Bill C-48 –the ‘anti tanker’ ban,  the emissions cap, the EV mandate, and the ‘Just Transition’ legislation. For context, former Alberta premier Jason Kenney coined the ‘no more pipelines’ nickname for Bill-C69, the anti tanker ban is meant to limit the size of oil tanks on ships crossing the ocean, and the Just Transition movement is actually the name of an official ministry of government.

“This latest attack on Canadian energy should not be a surprise. These radical climate ideologues don’t live in the real world. The reality is Canadians – and Albertans – need the energy industry and the world needs Canadian energy,” Shields said.

The MP saved his most denigrating statement for Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault, who regularly takes a bashing from Alberta Conservatives. “Continuing the trend of left wing nutjobs saying nutty things: our infamous ex-con environment minister recently announced the federal government will no longer fund any roadways or bridges!” The ‘ex-con’ bit goes back more than 20 years, when Guilbeault ascended the outside of the CN Tower and displayed a climate change-related political banner. He was convicted on a mischief charge and sentenced to a year’s probation, 100 hours of community service in Montreal, and required to pay $1,000 in restitution. Later that year, he reportedly trespassed at the home of then-premier fo Alberta Ralph Klein with another banner and a solar panel to install on the premier’s roof.

Shields outdid himself by adding, “If it were up to him, all Alberta families would be forced to walk to work in -40 or freeze in their homes because the carbon tax has been quadrupled, but this one is up there with the most asinine things he’s ever said.”

The MP clarified that the federal government doesn’t directly build roads but does provide funding for large scale projects like highways and he quipped, “You know, those long stretches of road that millions of Canadians use to get to work – including in the Bow River riding. It just goes to prove once again that the NDP-Liberal government is out of touch and not worth the cost.”

Whether or not the inflammatory language that Shields used is good sportsmanship may be debatable, but it’s certainly a strategy straight out of his party’s playbook under Pierre Poilievre. For the moderately-tempered, it may simply serve as prompt to read the documents, double-check the facts and make an informed decision for themselves. For the more volatile types, it will likely fan the flames of their pre-existing and intensifying discontent.

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