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Opinion stories

MALCOLM: Bias against the West and the oil sands continues

Any mainstream media coverage of the truck convoy was wrapped in an elitist hatred for Western Canadians and the working class.

The evolving SNC-Lavalin scandal and what appears to be an ensuing cover-up have rocked political Ottawa and dominated the news cycle for two solid weeks.

The mainstream media has done a decent job of highlighting the mere facts of this scandal — from what seems to be Trudeau’s gag order against former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould, to a new law stuffed into an omnibus bill that allows for a sweetheart deal for corporations like SNC-Lavalin, to Liberal MPs on the Justice Committee blocking a proper investigation, to Trudeau’s top aide Gerald Butts’s mysterious resignation.

But is this scandal resonating in the rest of the country?

Interestingly, the consensus from opinion writers in Quebec seems to be opposite of conclusions coming from English Canada. A chorus of francophone voices in Quebec have not only defended SNC-Lavalin, but also criticized Wilson-Raybould for notinterfering to save the engineering giant and even applauded the PMO for the alleged interference.

SNC-Lavalin employs nearly 10,000 people in Quebec, and many in that province insist the corporation is “too big to fail.”

Some Quebec writers took aim at the rest of the country, suggesting the scandal has been exaggerated due to sour grapes.

Writing in the Montreal Gazette, columnist Lise Ravary asks, “I can’t help but wonder whether English Canada’s punditocracy would be as indignant if the prime minister’s office had seemingly been trying to save a Toronto- or Calgary-based multinational corporation instead of a Quebec one.”

You can accuse Canada’s elites (including the PM) of many things, but having a pro-Alberta, anti-Quebec bias is certainly not one of them.

While opinion leaders in Quebec seek to justify their special status in the prime minister’s office, countless people in Western Canada are suffering directly because of Trudeau’s policies.

Over the past few days, thousands of out-of-work men and women from across the country participated in peaceful protests and rallies against Trudeau’s energy policies — which have landlocked Western Canadian oil and devastated an industry that once provided well-paying jobs to hard-working Canadians of all backgrounds and skill levels.

These patriotic blue-collar Canadians organized a truck convey — United We Roll — and they drove transport trucks from Northern Alberta across the country to Ottawa to protest the Prime Minister’s ideological opposition to their industry and their livelihoods.

Trudeau’s opposition to pipelines, energy workers and Alberta itself has had a devastating impact on that province.

Alberta’s economy is shedding tens of thousands of jobs per month. Meanwhile, the government is inching closer towards a de facto moratorium on oil — without so much as an explanation as to why this is necessary or how we can fuel our civilization without fossil fuels.

As the country watches the corruption unfold in Trudeau’s office, and while Quebec columnists complain that SNC-Lavalin deserves special treatment, think about the hard-working truckers who drove across Canada out of sheer desperation.

Their industry is collapsing, their careers are in jeopardy, their families are suffering, their province may never be the same, and all the while, their Prime Minister — surrounded by fellow elites in politics and media — is too busy explaining and justifying alleged corruption to pay any attention whatsoever.

Any mainstream media coverage of the truck convoy was wrapped in an elitist hatred for Western Canadians and the working class. A CBC article dismissed the truckers as “angry” and even accused them of racism.

Yes, there’s certainly a regional bias in Canada. But it ain’t in favour of those Calgary-based firms.

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