Pipeline Poker

People who live on the west coast of Canada, like me, woke up to the news that their government just lost the poker game between it and the Texas oil giant, Kinder Morgan. Trudeau and the Canadian banks, who own a big stake in the company, went all in by simply buying the pipeline that has been a bitter bone of contention for weeks. Kinder Morgan played its hand brilliantly by bullying and threats to abandon a project that they found to be financially problematic. In response, we bought it for $4.5 billion Canadian dollars, and that’s just the pipeline, the costs of twinning it will cost a few more billion. As an American senator once said, a few billion here and a few there, and pretty soon it adds up to real money.

On the world stage, we must look like the dumb fucks we, that is the Trudeau government, has turned out to be. The money that is going to waste on this ill-starred project is money that might have been invested more wisely in green technology, clean water on reservations, or perhaps a Health Care System that serves everyone, not just people with cancer and heart disease. But that, apparently, would be foolish. No, ‘it is in the national interest’, quoth our intrepid leader while, as Elizabeth May tweeted, ‘Kinder Morgan is laughing all the way to the bank’. While the Saudis are investing in the world’s largest solar farm and the Chinese are investing their billions in clean technology because there is really no alternative when your citizens are choking on polluted air, Canada is building pipelines that the industry considers ‘too risky’ with taxpayers’ money. It’s welfare for the wealthy, surely a strange situation.

If that weren’t enough, there is the well-documented corruption that has driven this Kinder Morgan disaster from the get-go. Under the previous government, the National Energy Board that was supposed to vet it in terms of the environmental issues simply didn’t do its job. The process was deeply flawed, and one of Trudeau’s election promises was that this process would be improved upon by new hearings. The new hearings weren’t much better than the old ones. And then we found out that the government gave instructions to its civil servants to find ways to move this project ‘forward’. Corruption is so deeply embedded in the Kinder Morgan pipeline DNA that it’s rather difficult to talk about it without swearing, tearing out your hair or heading for the exit.

We have been betrayed by our own ‘liberal’ government. But since most of the opposition to the pipeline and its supposed blessings resides in the lower mainland and on Vancouver Island, it’s safe to say that Trudeau’s Liberals will lose all their seats there, and with that, their majority.

Whatever Canadian Bankers want, they get. And we think we’re better, or smarter than our cousins down south.

I think they played us, and we’re now saddled with a white elephant.

Dumb fucks R us Canadians.


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