Damned if you do, damned if you doughnut—Trudeau’s latest debacle
Trudeau purchased some doughnuts recently at a local doughnut shop in Winnipeg. You’d think that wouldn’t make the news with all the more prescient issues at hand but it seems the pettier the better in our clickbait world. Critics wasted no time chastizing the prime minister for his decision to buy doughnuts on taxpayer dollars.
I want to be clear that I don’t like Justin Trudeau. I didn’t vote for him the first time around. I didn’t like that he ran on his father’s legacy. I don’t like his pious cadence. I don’t like his inability to answer basic questions. He is at worst corrupt and at best, a plug.
One thing I do like, however, is consistency. I want people to hold one another to the same standards as they would anybody else. The political polarization that is often discussed in regards to the United States has undeniably seeped into our home and native land as well. People get in their camps, left or right, and they stay there. Wilful blindness, logic twisting and “whataboutisms” plague the public discourse and there is no better platform to sling mud than Twitter.
It has become increasingly clear that in today’s political climate you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t. The Liberals are having a cabinet retreat in Winnipeg and Trudeau stepped out to grab some doughnuts and no doubt a much-needed photoshoot. He and the shop in question, Oh Doughnuts posted about the transaction and lo and behold people on the internet got upset about it.
I don’t wish to advertise for bitter Twitter users in this article but if you happen to be a fan of faux outrage, the hashtag is #doughnutgate. In this thread, you’ll find people whining away, primarily about the cost of the doughnuts which came in at a whopping $47 a dozen. That is what we are squabbling about, the difference of thirty some odd dollars it would have cost if he’d bought the doughnuts at Tim Hortons.
Tim Hortons, the famously Brazilian-owned coffee and doughnut chain was surely open and operating just as close by many complained, so why didn’t he go there and save his compatriots the pocket money? Because he’s an elitist, that’s why. It could also be that Tim Horton’s employees in Winnipeg are currently on strike or the franchisee refusing to raise their wages. It could be because the Prime Minister wanted to photo-op of him shopping locally.
I don’t understand why or how, any Canadian could criticize a politician for shopping locally, I can’t even play devil’s advocate momentarily on that one.
Sure the guy likes to spend our money, there are plenty of vacation receipts to prove that, but it’s important to separate the wheat from the chaff.
One Twitter critic complained about the fact that Trudeau was out shopping himself, claiming he could have got one of his assistants to run the errand. The tweet also opened with “Elitist Trudeau.” It’s hard wrap your head around some of this stuff. How can a politician be elitist for not sending his assistant to run an errand but instead opting for a chance to connect with his fellow citizen? It’s absurd.
Again, I’m no fan of Trudeau or of politicians in general for that matter but my disdain for hypocrisy far outweighs any political leanings. I wonder how positively effective social media could be as a forum for communication if the majority of users weren’t operating through an us vs. them scope. The truth of the matter is that we all have more things in common than we do things uncommon.
The next time a politician, or anybody for that matter that you don’t like is doing something just ask yourself, “how would I feel if it was my politician or my friend in this exact scenario?” I’d be willing to bet it would change your perception of it a great deal.
I think we’d all be a step closer to harmony if we seek truth and fairness over a momentary ‘victory.’
Twitter is working out ways to combat misinformation on the platform, and one of the ideas, per a leaked draft to NBC, is to add warning labels beneath perceived lies and misinformation.
Posts by politicians or their campaigns would be vetted by verified fact-checkers and journalists. Presumably, these people would be entirely objective and able to parse information evenly, cleanly, and without any personal bias whatsoever.
This effort comes in the wake of a rollout of a new policy from Twitter to detect and delete deep fakes and manipulated videos. The new system would also enable something of a social credit component, where “users could earn ‘points’ and a ‘community badge’ if they ‘contribute in good faith and act like a good neighbour’ and ‘provide critical context to help people understand information they see.”
Per NBC, “The points system could prevent trolls or political ideologues from becoming moderators if they differ too often from the broader community in what they mark as false or misleading.” What that means is that one, lone, dissenting voice, that does not go along with the opinion of everyone else, could lose their status as a moderator simply because they are willing to diverge from the group opinion. Having an opinion that differs too often will be reason for invalidation.
That an entire group thinks one thing does not make it true. Truth is not discerned by the number of people who believe it. In fact, the mere fact of total consensus is reason enough to investigate.
Warning labels are present in many aspects of life. They are on both prescription and over the counter drugs, on car seats, side view mirrors, and at the edge of cliffs suggesting we not get too close. Health Canada and the US FDA require ingredients labelling on foods. Tobacco products are covered with images of diseased lungs per government regulation. Information is not something that should come with a warning label.
This is not new, but it is more insidious, given just how much information the public currently consumes. In the 1990s, Tipper Gore advocated for warnings labels to come on albums, and she succeeded. Perhaps nothing was more enticing to a kid than an album with the black and white label reading: Parental Advisory: Explicit Lyrics. Books by renowned authors like James Joyce were banned for their sexual content.
Tech giants are concerned over their complicity in making misleading or downright incorrect information available for public consumption. They are worried that, as a result of their proprietary algorithms, stories and posts that contain inaccuracies will appear on users’ feeds. What the tech companies want is a corrective. They want to fix it. They want to be able to slap a warning label on there, give it a splashy Pantone shade, and let the issue drop, solved.
If the standard for misinformation were to be applied equally across ideologies, the BuzzFeed’s and Vox’s Twitter feeds would be very colourful indeed. But there’s no reason to believe that will be the case, given past examples. From the dirty Trump dossier to the Covington kids hoax to Jussie Smollett, misinformation flows freely from the woke outlets. And they are always given a pass by big tech.
Andy Ngo had to delete his tweet stating facts from the Human Rights Campaign because they were inconvenient to the progressive narrative. Meghan Murphy is still banned from Twitter for speaking a simple biological truth.
Here’s a thought experiment: How would Twitter categorize this tweet from Hillary Clinton? Is there enough evidence of collusion to warrant her calling Trump Putin’s Puppet?
Twitter’s plan to know what is true based on what the largest quantity of verified moderators believe is true is thoroughly flawed. The plight of heterodox thinkers on Twitter has been well documented, with those who diverge from the common narrative banned or threatened with deletion. Twitter does not know how to discern fact from fiction, and their plan of labelling information with warning labels will stifle truth and discourse, not advance it. The truth is that Twitter is the last place to trust when it comes to the truth.
Does Justin Trudeau’s new tone on the Canadian blockades, which have embarrassingly paralyzed our nation’s economy for two weeks, sound familiar to you? It should.
Trudeau’s new approach on the matter is that every attempt has been made at reaching an agreement to peacefully end the blockades. But what Trudeau seemingly failed to realize is that the people hijacking Canada’s economy do not want peace. They aren’t ones for reasonable discourse. They want the complete shutdown of Canada’s natural resource industry, and it’s something that Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer correctly called them out for from the get-go.
Trudeau’s response this time around is the correct one, somewhat. There’s still nothing concrete in place, and he is more so acting on faith based on the false pretense that Trudeau’s word will clear the railways on their own.
In reality, he’s implying the police should finally do their jobs, something the leader of any nation should do immediately when a group of citizens decide to start breaking the law–threatening thousands of jobs and the entire country’s economy.
But this still is too little, much too late. With every comment that Trudeau gave on the matter, up until this point, were all the same copy-and-paste that we’d expect from a politician cautious to give any concrete answer.
Each answer touched on Canada being a rule of law, yet when asked by reporters or by Bloc Quebecois Party Leader in the House of Commons when this issue would be resolved. Each time, Trudeau insisted that he was meeting with opposing voices to find a solution.
It was always clear that Trudeau needed to take from Andrew Scheer’s approach—one that Trudeau himself called a “willful misrepresentation” of reconciliation.
What action did Trudeau call for today that Andrew Scheer was not calling for nearly four days ago? Scheer correctly identified the opposing voices as a small group of radical activists with little to no connection to First Nations communities—restless radicals who want nothing but to see Canada’s oil and gas industry shut down.
“Canadians have been patient. Our government has been patient. The barricades must come done now,” said Trudeau of the matter. “The injunctions must be obeyed. The law must be upheld.” A fine sentiment, but when dealing with reconciliation, how much should we be willing to sacrifice?
VIA Rail has temporarily laid off roughly 1,000 employees amidst the illegal blockades, and CN Rail has laid off an additional 450. On top of this, last week’s predictions had that over 83,000 travellers had been inconvenienced by train cancellations, including myself and two of my colleagues, who have had to book last-minute rideshares or planes to get to Toronto from Montreal—a typically painless endeavour.
This is something that Scheer himself understands. While addressing media shortly after Trudeau’s response, Scheer correctly called out Trudeau for allowing this entire mess to happen in the first place.
“Justin Trudeau has caused this problem. He elevated these protests to the same level as efforts for reconciliation as recently as this Tuesday, and now, he’s finally realized that there are two different things at play here,” said Scheer, before once again calling out the eco-radicals stunting our country. “Justin Trudeau has already taken force off the table. He has refused to use the authority that he has, and is relying on the goodwill of protestors to take down the barricades. This is not leadership. This is nothing but phony resolve.”
The ball is, was, and always has been in Justin Trudeau’s court, and he has failed Canadians at every turn once again. Let’s hope that for the good of our economy and our communities that Trudeau doesn’t continue to fail when finally getting major Canadian infrastructure up and running again.
Justin Trudeau addressed media Friday afternoon regarding the ongoing rail blockades which have brought Canada to a grinding halt.
Trudeau officially called for the blockades to come down. “All Canadians are paying the price … Essential goods cannot get to where they need to go. The situation where it currently stands is unacceptable and untenable,” said Trudeau.
“Canadians have been patient. Our government has been patient. The barricades must come done now. ” said Trudeau of the matter. The injunctions must be obeyed. The law must be upheld,” said Trudeau.
Trudeau’s comments had a strong emphasis on his party’s focus on making civil, productive conversation with a focus on reconciliation. Unfortunately for Trudeau, it seems as though the two groups walked away with very little in terms of progress.
“Every attempt at dialogue has been made, but discussions have not been productive. We cant have dialogue when only one party is coming to the table. For this reason, we have no choice but to stop making the same overtures,” said Trudeau. “Of course, we will never close the door on dialogue and our hand remains extended should someone want to reach for it… The fact remains. The barricades must now come down. The injunctions must be obeyed. And the law must be upheld.”
Our resolve to pursue the reconciliation agenda with and peoples is as strong as ever. there are historic wrongs to right,” continued Trudeau. “Canadians want this, but hurting Canadian families from coast to coast to coast does nothing to advance the cause of reconciliation.”
A meeting with (most) party leaders
On Tuesday, Prime Minister Trudeau held a meeting with opposition parties, excluding Andrew Scheer, in an attempt to find solutions on the matter.
Trudeau explained that it was the CPC’s deliberate misunderstanding of reconciliation that was behind the exclusion.
Scheer’s comments included strong words on activists who were “wilfully misrepresenting” reconciliation.
“Let me be clear Mr. Speaker, standing between our country and prosperity is a small group of radical activists, many of whom have little to no connection to First Nations communities. A bunch of radical activists who won’t rest until our oil and gas industry is entirely shut down,” said Scheer.
“Now they may have the luxury of not having to go to work every day. They may have the luxury of not facing repercussions for skipping class, but they are blockading our ports, our railways, and our borders and roads and highways. They are appropriating an Indigenous agenda which they are willfully misrepresenting.”
This is a breaking news article and will be updated.
A list of 41 Nobel Prize winners have signed a petition urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to stop the Teck Frontier mine in Alberta.
The petition, published in an open letter via The Guardian, is signed by Peace Prize winners, made up of 10 winners in chemistry, three in literature, 12 in medicine, nine Peace Prize winners, and seven physicists.
The letter argues that the enabling of the fossil fuel industry’s growth is “an affront to our state of climate emergency,” going so far as to call it a “disgrace” that Canada is even “considering them.”
“The response to the climate crisis will define and destroy legacies in the coming years, and the qualifications for being on the right side of history are clear: an immediate end to fossil-fuel financing and expansion along with an ambitious and just transition away from oil and gas production towards zero-carbon well before mid-century,” the letter argues.
When asked about whether or not the Teck Mine Project would come to fruition, the PM told reporters that his government was deciding whether or not the mine would be in the nation’s best interest.
The mine is set to bring in roughly 7,000 workers during construction, as well as 2,500 full-time workers upon its completion.
Additionally, Finance Minister Bill Morneau revealed that a potential aid package was in the works if the Trudeau government were to decide against the mine.
“I would never think to characterize this as anything other than creating opportunities… Alberta is a province where we have great entrepreneurs who have built a strong economy and I think what we need to do is address the economy as challenged right now and create a path forward that will have hope for this generation and the next generation. I look at it very differently,” said Morneau on CBC’s Power & Politics.
The mine’s potential construction has caused somewhat of a schism within the Liberal Party, as environmentally-minded MPs rally against the project.
“There will be a big fight inside cabinet over this,” said the source familiar with the difficult situation to Reuters.
The mayors for both Edmonton and Calgary made their ways to Ottawa recently, calling for the mines to be built. Alberta premier Jason Kenney also backed the mine, citing the job creation and the project’s backing by Indigenous communities. Kenney stated that there was no reason to reject the mine, as there had been ten years of reviews to green-light the project.