#WEXIT: Western Canada separatism explodes on social media
Following the reelection of Justin Trudeau as Prime Minister with a Liberal minority, #Wexit, or Western exit (a play on Brexit), immediately began trending on Twitter, with separatist accounts gaining thousands of new followers.
One of the most important takeaways from the election is the blue sweep throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan. Both provinces have expressed growing indignation over the other provinces’ dependence on the oil industry, while simultaneously trying to stifle Alberta’s business prospects and economic growth by opposing pipelines.
People in Saskatchewan have expressed similar discontent, as many in the province benefit from the oil industry and Saskatchewan farmers in Canada’s heartland worry climate policies will target their economy next.
In response to Justin Trudeau’s reelection, the Facebook group for VoteWexit.com gained tens of thousands of followers in a matter of hours. According to CTV News, in just 10 minutes the group surged from 4,000 members to 42,000. By 8:00 a.m. the next morning, the group had shot up to over 113,000 members.
Additionally, a Change.org petition for “Alberta Separation/Western Alliance” has gained significant traction, receiving over 20.000 signatures of its 25,000 signature goal at the time of this article’s writing. This occurred in less than 24 hours.
“Trudeau’s re-election is going to tear Canada in half. Good job Quebec. You’ll get your separatism desires. The west is leaving,” wrote one Twitter user.
Another writes, “Western Canada – especially Alberta – is basically the victim of an abusive relationship with the rest of the country. Too scared to actually leave but what’s the benefit of staying? Not sure what the answer is but I’m worried about the next 4 years #wexit.”
The biggest concern, beyond a general shift in sentiment towards climate awareness over economic growth, for the Conservative-dominated provinces is the continued placation of Quebec from politicians in Ottawa who seem to take it out on Alberta. This is despite oil and gas revenues subsidizing Quebec’s social services through equalization payments.
Indeed, Alberta Premier Jason Kenney and Quebec Premier Francois Legault have had multiple verbal jousting matches over just this issue.
According to Mount Royal University political scientist Duane Bratt, whether the Western separatist movement gains traction will be greatly decided by Kenney’s leadership and thoughts on the issue in the coming months.
“You have this large cohort of Conservative MPs. How does the government function? How does the Trudeau government function? What is Kenney’s response?” Bratt said. “I think this is a real danger to national unity.
“Does he try to dampen that down? He didn’t during the campaign. He put out a video in August saying, ‘We don’t want to separate from Canada, we want to separate Trudeau from office.’
“Kenney then campaigns against Trudeau not just in Alberta but in Ontario and in Manitoba and he’s unsuccessful, so where do they go next?”
Mount Royal University political analyst David Taras broadly agreed with Bratt’s analysis.
“Let’s face it, the anger and alienation in western Canada is real and this government will have to deal with it,” Taras said.
“There’s a sense of just awful alienation, of really feeling deeply offended and I think the (Trudeau) government has to really take a look at what it has to do in terms of energy policy and pipelines in order to get any kind of hearing here.”
Other Canadians took to social media to ridicule the possibility of a separatist movement, saying that Alberta is landlocked and, thus, in some way reliant on the coastal provinces.
“Western separation is nonsense,” wrote one Twitter user. “A landlocked state cannot feasibly work… but I do understand the frustration and resentment in the west in a way that I never could while living in Ontario. Scary Times. #Wexit #Elxn43.”
Another Twitter user wrote, “I understand the frustration, but immediately wanting to separate from Canada after the party you support loses is the childhood equivalent of shutting off the Nintendo, taking your controller and going home when your team gets scored on. #wexit #elxn43.”
While landlocked states are more difficult to manage, some have argued that selling oil to the U.S. and countries southwards would be significantly easier without Ottawa stifling the industry.
Either way, it’s clear that alternatives to the Canadian confederation are being seriously considered.
According to a poll conducted by Think HQ in early October, 71 percent of respondents believe policies under the Trudeau government are hurting the quality of life in Alberta. That’s compared to 15 percent who felt the opposite.
Before the election, 23 percent of Albertans polled wanted to leave Canada, 17 percent were not sure, and 57 percent wanted to stay. However, many who wanted to stay were still highly dissatisfied by the state and trajectory of policies laid out in Ottawa. We cannot be sure exactly how many will change their mind, but it does appear there is a significant shift towards separatism following the election.
The Soviets had a term for their minions in the West who advocated for Communism and tried to tear down democratic capitalist nations:
They were “useful” in the sense of doing what the Communists wanted in pushing their message and sowing discord, and they were ‘idiots’ in the sense that they would obviously suffer if Communism had won, and wouldn’t be a part of the “new order.”
And now, the Western world is once again beset by “useful idiots.”
A recent report discussed how US activists initiated a plan in 2008 to crush the Alberta oilsands, and are apparently “claiming victory” as Canada is increasingly divided, the Alberta oil industry struggles, investment flees, projects are delayed, and the energy sector faces existential risk.
Of course, global emissions keep going up.
Because emissions in Communist China continue to surge, with China building loads of new coal plants, both within China and in other nations like Pakistan.
So, what have those foreign-funded activists accomplished?
They’re tearing apart Canada, a democratic nation which already has among the highest environmental standards, redirecting money towards ruthless states like Saudi Arabia, and giving Communist China cover for increasing their emissions as the Communist State builds up their economy, which in turn gives China the wealth to build up their military forces and impose their authoritarian will over a larger and larger section of the planet.
Great job guys…
It seems that this generation’s “useful idiots” are much more successful than the useful idiots of the past, as their effort to destabilize and weaken Western nations like Canada are actually working, while the power of the Communist State grows by the day.
And like the useful idiots used by the Soviets, those who do the bidding—even unwillingly—of Communist China will meet a similar fate if the Communists win.
Do you think China will listen to criticism of energy projects?
Do you think China will give activists any rights?
Do you think China will follow environmental regulations?
Of course not.
The fact is the world is increasingly locked in a battle of two world-views. The democratic capitalist nations vs authoritarian communist China. Anything that hurts one (like dividing Canada and crushing Alberta’s oil industry), benefits the other.
That’s why all freedom-loving Canadians must speak out against the foreign-funded activists seeking to weaken our country and must redirect attention to the true threat posed by Communist China under that country’s current leadership. We must stand up for Alberta’s energy industry, stand up for the interests of Canada, and stand against those who put everything we’ve built at risk.
Former Prime Minister Kim Campbell has called Wexit “nuts” and that it was created to sow “unnecessary division.”
Speaking to Global News, Campbell stated that “adult” conversations were necessary with policies like equalization, and yet the dialogue has been anything but mature.
“We’re a complex country and we are always going to have issues that need solving,” she added. When Campbell was prompted on Wexit she gave out an incensed screech: “It’s nuts! I’m sorry, it’s a dead-end, so Alberta’s going to separate and that’s going to make it easier to get access to open water? That is a slogan designed to make people angry.”
Campbell’s comments come after the surging support in western separatism deriving from Justin Trudeau’s re-election. Since then, a notable online presence has grown in support of the Wexit movement, and the premiers of western provinces have cautioned Trudeau of the stark consequences of western alienation.
Campbell finished by saying that the Wexit movement “was not how grown-up people address problems … I see this and I think grow up!”
A Twitter search of Campbell’s tweets on Quebec show no similar criticism of the separatist movement in that province.
Bloc Quebecois leader Yves-François Blanchet has attacked Alberta Premier Kenney by saying that he needs to “start explaining things with truth.” Blanchet went on to say that Kenney had been spreading “false information” about the province’s equalization payments, according to Global News.
An indignant Blanchet told The West Block that Canada “does not send a cheque to Quebec … I would be glad if he started explaining things with truth instead of some false information as we see.”
When Blanchet was asked about the Wexit movement he stated that he understood “that some people in western Canada don’t feel comfortable in the presence of this country … but the desire to do whatever they want with their oil might not be a sufficient reason to fuel a desire to become a country.”
Blanchet’s comments is the latest escalation in the war of words between the Quebec and Alberta premiers. Last week, after leaving a meeting with Prime Minister Trudeau, Blanchet told a scrum of reporters that he would not indulge western Canada’s desire to build an “oil state”.
Due to Kenney making a point of criticizing equalization payments, even going as far as to threaten a referendum, Blanchet’s position will further antagonize an already disenfranchised western Canada
Since 1960, Alberta has paid $600 billion in equalization payments to Ottawa, much of which has then relocated to Quebec. Over the last few years, Alberta’s economy has begun to slow down, even falling into a light recession this year. Despite this, they still have had to pay $23 billion each year for the past five years.
Blanchet’s comments, then, add additional salt to Alberta’s wound, especially as Quebec posted a $4 billion surplus.
Alberta’s tussle with bad weather isn’t over yet.
Following our report last week which placed Alberta as one of the coldest places on Earth, there is some improvement, if only a touch.
Instead of a colossal and cold snowstorm, large chunks of the province will receive freezing rain.
While better than the previous week, the still dangerous weather has prompted an Environment Canada warning.
|Fort McMurray – Fort MacKay|
|Grande Prairie – Beaverlodge – Valleyview|
|Hinton – Grande Cache|
|Peace River – Fairview – High Prairie – Manning|
|Wabasca – Peerless Lake – Gift Lake – Cadotte Lake|
|Whitecourt – Edson – Fox Creek – Swan Hills|
According to Environment Canada, the warnings may need to be expanded today as the freezing rain transitions eastwards.
The government agency recommends taking precautions while driving as surfaces such as highways, roads, walkways and parking lots may become icy and slippery.