Greta Thunberg continues chastising Canada, next stop Vancouver
Controversial climate activist Greta Thunberg will appear at the Vancouver climate strike planned for this Friday.
According to a release by organizers, “the movement will take to the streets again this Friday for a post-election climate strike featuring local Indigenous activists.”
Greta Thunberg has left North America and is traveling back to Europe with the use of a catamaran. Thunberg will now head to Europe where she will attend the UN climate summit, according to the Daily Mail.
Thankfully for Thunberg, an Australian couple offered to sail her back from Virginia in the United States. It will take her two to three weeks to get to Portugal, depending on the Atlantic Ocean’s temperament.
During her time in North America, Thunberg met with world leaders, famous actors, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The Swedish activist even took time to visit Alberta where she received a cooler reception than other stops on her tour.
As Russia’s cyber meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election fuelled concerns North of 49 about similar foreign interference in Canada’s federal vote, it appears the biggest transgressors interfered very publicly, and with nothing in law to prevent them.
In addition to Swedish child environmental activist Greta Thunberg’s whistle-stop tour of climate change doom-and-gloom, including Montreal and Edmonton–the latter just days before our election–former U.S. President Barack Obama and his former ambassador to Canada Bruce Heyman also Tweeted ringing endorsements of incumbent Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
“The [elections] commissioner was already interpreting [the current law] as if someone in another country expressed an opinion then that was just an expression of an opinion, and that was allowed,” said Democracy Watch’s Duff Conacher, adding that new legislation did not address remedies or preventative measures for such activities.
“Bill C-76 [an Act to Amend the Canada Elections Act] didn’t really touch at all on the foreign interference. It had no effect on that–now if somebody actually came up and campaigned for somebody, that that was not allowed.”
Following Obama’s endorsement, Conservative Senator Denise Batters Tweeted that repealing section 331 of the former act, opened the door for such activity.
Critics like Conacher also decry third party spending limits that Bill C-76 increased by 250 percent to more than $500,000.
But apart from some punditry questioning the timing of Thunberg’s visit–on September 27 in Quebec and October 17 in Edmonton, well within the writ period in an election where climate change “action” was prominent, mainstream media treated the child as a rock star.
And the only media outlet to confront Thunberg and her handlers about their meddling was Rebel News – media persona non-grata that had to sue in federal court to obtain accreditation for the official debates – whose reporter Keane Bexte asked the questions, albeit distastefully, for which many Canadians wanted answers.
“If a party brought her in, or a third party – if she didn’t pay her own way – those expenses should be counted as part of their expenses overall, because it’s an election event,” said Conacher.
While Bexte’s questioning revealed little about who was backstopping Thunberg’s Canadian tour, Conacher said it would be entirely unwieldy to prevent such future activity during a federal election.
“You’d have to cancel every single event where a foreigner is speaking during the election time, if you were going to do that. And again, she was just making statements; she didn’t say vote for anybody in particular or vote against anybody.”
She did, however, say Trudeau hadn’t done enough in his first four years.
With respect to Obama’s Twitter endorsement on Oct. 16, there is the relationship between NGO Canada2020, its founder and Chairman Thomas Pitfield’s longtime friendship with Trudeau and the NGO’s sponsorship of a speech the former U.S. president made in Ottawa on May 31, 2019.
While Pitfield did not respond to The Post Millennial’s inquiry about how much Canada2020 paid for Obama to appear before more than 11,000 people at the Canadian Tire Centre where the Ottawa Senators play, the U.S. president’s speaking fees have previously been reported to be as high as $400,000.
Conservative ethics critic Peter Kent, who won re-election in his Thornhill, Ontario riding, is reticent to call Obama’s nod to Trudeau a quid-pro-quo arrangement based on the PM’s connections with Canada2020. But he did say the “relationship [between Trudeau’s Liberals and Canada2020] we make regular reference to in Commons’ debate.”
“I would suggest that the endorsement by the former president is inappropriate, but I wouldn’t go beyond that,” said Kent. “The connection [between Canada2020 and Trudeau] is obviously there and I think folks can judge it for what it might appear to be.”
Trudeau’s and the Liberal Party’s relationship with Canada2020 was big news as far back as November 2016, after multiple media outlets published a Canadian Press story about “cash-for-access” events held stateside, and the party’s rental of Canada2020 office digs for its 2015 campaign that saw Trudeau elected to a majority government.
(The Liberals also sent an incumbent MP to Manhattan during the 2019 election to drum up donations from Canadian expats at a private fundraiser.)
Maclean’s even ran a feature article in October of 2017 entitled “Inside the ‘progressive’ think tank that really runs Canada”, yet, following Obama’s endorsement there was zero reportage linking the U.S. president’s Canada2020 payday with his 11th-hour political support to Trudeau.
The Liberal Party also used footage from Canada2020 “breakfast series” events, such as the one featuring then-cabinet minister Ralph Goodale – who lost his Saskatchewan seat in the October 21st vote – as online campaign advertisements.
Eight days before Trudeau said he would reveal his minority government cabinet, Obama is scheduled to return to Canada; this time in Newfoundland for a November 12 speaking event in its capital, sponsored by St. John’s Board of Trade.
Greta Thunberg, the notable young environmental activist, rejected an award by the Nordic Council praising her advocacy efforts.
“It is a huge honour,” Thunberg said. “But the climate movement does not need any more awards.”
“What we need is for our politicians and the people in power to start listening to the current, best available science,” she added.
The prize was worth DKK 350,000 or USD 52,000.
Thunberg was also a contender for the Nobel Peace Prize, which was eventually awarded to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali.
The Nordic Council awarded Thunberg the prize for “breathing new life into the debate surrounding the environment and climate at a critical moment in world history.”
“She has stubbornly and persuasively urged the world to listen to research and act on the basis of facts,” the council said in a statement.
Thunberg also criticized the Nordic countries for not taking firmer action on climate change.
“The Nordic countries have a great reputation around the world when it comes to climate and environmental issues,” she said. “But when it comes to our actual emissions and our ecological footprints per capita—if we include our consumption, our imports as well as aviation and shipping—then it’s a whole other story,” she said.
Thousands of people have gathered in downtown Vancouver where climate activist Greta Thunberg is expected to be speaking later this afternoon.
Thunberg arrived in Vancouver last night according to her Twitter feed where she posted a picture of herself in front of the Vancouver skyline.
Among those in the crowd were about a dozen young people who are allegedly suing the federal government for lack of action on climate change.
Currently, crowds are waiting in front of the art gallery. A march is expected to take place where people will be walking to the waterfront and then back to the art gallery where Greta will give a speech.
Indigenous activists also addressed the crowd to highlight relevant issues and criticize the government’s decision to purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline.
Only last week Thunberg was in Edmonton where she attended a climate strike in Alberta.