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Emergency? What Emergency? An Open Letter to Canadians

Contributed by Donald Lee © 2019

In this op-ed submission, a citizen expresses their outrage over the declaration of a “Climate Emergency” in Canada.

by Donald Lee

Recent political news has continued to follow Pareto’s 80-20 rule: 20% sense and 80% nonsense. Our emperor in Ottawa and his Comic Courtiers have declared a Climate Emergency. Really? Perhaps I’m just a country bumpkin and my personal experience is merely “anecdotal” in the grand Sea of Scientific Seriousness in which I can only dip my toe. But my grandchildren are growing up in an Alberta climate today not observably different from the Alberta climate in which I grew up half a century ago. What emergency?

Yet our emperor insists that something is rotten in the State of Climate and he’s going to fix it with – wait for it – taxes! Really? Setting all the scientific questions aside for the moment, as an economist, I can tell you there is absolutely no way you can change the climate of the entire planet with taxes. The earth’s climate does not respond to taxes. Taxes just don’t do that. That’s the truth. Taxes raise money for governments. They don’t do much of anything else except make life more difficult and expensive for all the rest of us. Politicians, and their economist lackeys, think they create whatever dystopic vision of society they want with tax incentives and disincentives. The truth is – it ain’t so. There is precious little real economic evidence to suggest that taxes do any of the other things they’re purported to do. Even high taxes only marginally affect human behaviour. High booze taxes have not reduced the inexorable rise in per capita alcohol consumption. High tobacco taxes did not reduce cigarette smoking. The gradual realization that smoking kills you did that. And millions of people blithely continue to slowly kill themselves anyway. Fuel taxes have not induced people to park their cars when they need to travel, to turn off their furnaces when they need to warm up, or to shut off their lights when they need to see in the dark. Perhaps our emperor has forgotten that Canada is cold and dark for half the year.

To solve the fantasy Climate Emergency, our emperor has settled upon the one thing governments do well – tax and spend. A carbon tax. Really? Every living thing is made of carbon – every human, animal, fish, bird, every tree and every blade of grass. Are we taxing all these? No. Ninety percent of the earth’s carbon is tied up in sedimentary rocks. Are we taxing the rocks? No. So even though carbon is the sixth most abundant evil element in the universe, we’re not going to make any money by taxing it.  It’s not a tax on carbon. That’s just lying propaganda. It’s a tax on fuel, plain and simple. We’ve had fuel taxes for 100 years and they haven’t changed the climate yet. Neither will this one. That’s the truth. Any possible impact of higher fuel taxes in Canada on global CO2 production will be so infinitesimally small as to be indistinguishable from zero. Carbon taxes cannot possibly affect the climate.

So it seems that our emperor and his Comic Courtier Economists, drunk on the wine of their own grandiose economic omnipotence, have taken a new and bold step in their Religion of Social Engineering. Not only do they believe they can change human society to suit themselves (hiding behind the curtain and pulling the levers of tax incentives like the Wizard of Oz), they believe they can change the physical universe! (And some people think I have strange beliefs.) Surely the climate will respond to tax incentives – in exactly the way we believe it will. The fact that it’s never been done before, or that there is no real scientific evidence to suggest it will work (lots of speculation, but no evidence), are mere incidentals that only a non-believer would quibble over.

Nor does it matter that even the brightest among us don’t actually know how the climate works, since no one has yet come up with a general theory of climate. It’s of no import that no one can even explain the scientific climate evidence. What causes ice ages to start? Or end? No one knows. Or what about minor climate changes like the Little Ice Age. The earth spent about five centuries getting gradually colder (1200-1700) and has since spent about three centuries unraveling that change. Nobody knows why. But it doesn’t matter because, with confidence born of ignorance, our emperor is going to change the earth’s climate with taxes. And you’re going to pay them! If changing the earth’s climate is as easy as “putting a price on pollution”, then surely we could simply put a tax on water, thereby discouraging it and causing the sea level to fall.

A Climate Emergency? The true evidence shows there is no increase in the frequency or intensity of extreme weather events anywhere in the world. The true evidence shows no change in the rate of sea level rise over the past 150 when records have been kept. The geologic evidence suggests the rate hasn’t changed for the past 12,000 years. What emergency? Some of us are old enough to remember that the same apocalyptic disasters that are now supposed to happen by 2030 were supposed to have happened already. No apocalypse yet. What emergency?

Once again, our emperor and his Comic Courtiers have instituted a solution that cannot possibly solve the imaginary problem it is purported to solve. Are they ignorant or deceitful? Those are the only two possibilities I can think of. Either they have no idea what they’re doing, or they know exactly what they’re doing and it’s not what they say they’re doing. (Did ya follow that?) Can any of this supposed environmental nonsense be of any benefit to sea turtles, or burrowing owls, or polar bears? Nope. How about the homeless? Nope. How about people who built homes in swamps or on eroding shorelines? Nope.

The only possible beneficiary of carbon taxes is the government bureaucracy itself. Once again, hundreds of freshly minted Humanities majors and under-employed housewives will find gainful employment and a steady paycheque shuffling paper in Ministry of the War on the State of Climate. J.K. Rowling would approve the new fantasy ministry.

Our Climate Barbie says she’s doing the right thing by taxing pollution. Really? Why then do municipalities in Liberal ridings continue to dump raw sewage into Federal waterways without consequence? Isn’t that pollution? It contains carbon. And we do know how to solve that problem. In fact, it’s easy. That’s the truth.

It’s a famous tactic of failing politicians to pick fights with neighboring countries, to distract the public’s attention from their domestic policy failures. Since Canada has no readily-available neighbors we could beat up, our emperor has found some indefensible entities to attack – the vile State of Climate and the insidious Principality of Plastic Straws. Surely if we legalize hallucinogens, write the scripts for the town criers, and wage successful wars against imagined enemies, the people will love us. Now we can create a new Ministry for the War on Plastic Straws. Our Elites are incredibly out of touch, not only with ordinary people but with reality as well.

I don’t think our emperor could recognize an emergency if it sat up in his cannabis-infused Cheerios and said, “Good morning.” There are certainly crises in our society, as always, but our Elites cannot distinguish the crucial from the trivial. While they pathetically battle Plastic Straws and Climate Change like Don Quixote tilting at windmills, they’re oblivious to the fact that half of Albertans would vote for secession today because we’re so disgusted with trying to be a part of this dysfunctional nation, and sick and tired of being squished under the heel of its idiotic rulers.

The emperor has no clothes. That’s the naked truth.


Donald Lee is an author and retired teacher.



  1. Robert Francis Lyman

    A very well expressed howl of frustration with the empty logic behind much of current Canadian climate policy (and it is Canadian climate policy, not just federal government climate policy). Taxes won’t stop people from using the energy they need and neither will the alternative – an endless stream of ever-more-intrusive regulations, subsidies and programs. I have only one disagreement with Mr. Lee, and that is his belief that the declaration of a “climate emergency” has no sense behind it. It is, in fact, a very deliberate strategy to discourage thoughtful opposition to the irresistible momentum of state-controlled activism. It is a “shout-out” to all, but especially young people and it says, “It’s an emergency! Don’t think! Just panic and obey.” I am glad to see that there are people like Mr. Lee immune to the call.

  2. Alx Rocks

    brilliantly stated…

  3. hollybirtwistle

    Donald, spot on. A very enjoyable piece to read. You are right in that “they know exactly what they are doing”. Trudeau and his inner cabinet and associates are not Liberals – they are Globalists. And every single policy they propose is designed to follow the Globalist Agenda, which is to save the planet from hopeless hapless humanity, and create a new ‘sustainable for the planet’ social system that is intended to control humanity from the top(the UN). Globalism is the re-immersion of Marxism, hybridized to radical Environmentalism. Globalist’s particularly despise Capitalism; and one can see Barack Obama’s attempts to weaken the US economy. It is intended to subvert freedom and democracy, and is a default to the most destructive part of our human nature – the urge to rule over others, therefore controlling the future.
    Rule by Tyranny, either empires, monarchies, dictators, is the entire history of humanity, until the recent practise of Freedom, Democracy, and Capitalsm. As Jefferson said, ” the Price of Freedom is Vigilance”.
    So-called human-caused Climate Change was created by the UN (Maurice Strong and others), around 1989 (around the time a Communist vacuum was created by the collapse of the Soviet Union). It’s purpose is to persuade people that human activity is changing the climate, and to create a giant wealth transfer from free, prosperous, Capitalist nations to the UN, via the Paris Accord, to fund the Globalist Agenda.

  4. Don

    Everything that happens on Earth happens in cycles. The only straight line is in man’s mind. There are no straight lines in nature. Everything is nature is formed by spinning spheres, or waves.
    Spinning spheres emit waves. We know this happens with the planets; they emit electromagnetic wave. Waves are everywhere in the Earth’s atmophere (and in outer space) and waves create cycles. Cycles affect just about every aspects of our lives on Earth.
    There are lots of different cycles of different lengths. However, the major cycles tend to be somewhat harmonic (they’re divisible by three, to find the next higher or lower cycle). Major cycles are 7, 19, 57, 172, 515, and 1030.
    Stephen Puetz wrote a book on the probabilities of cycles, tracking cycles back through the beginning of time. It’s called the Unified Cycle theory and you’ll find it in my recommended book list.
    Below is the civilization chart I created (featured in the video). The data comes from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration—from the Greenland Ice Core Research project ending in 1992. Ice cores are an extremely accurate method of determining temperature back through the centuries.
    You can see the large temperature peaks every 1030 years – the red arrows. These extremely warm and wet periods supported bountiful crops and major societies grew to the height of their power.
    The correlation of warm and wet climate with the rise of major civilizations is striking. When the climate turns warm and wet for long periods, the world’s greatest empires have emerged – Egypt, Greece, Rome, the Mayans, the Vikings, and so on.
    When the climate grew colder, these great cultures fell into ruin. Bad things start to happen when climate turns cold and rainfall stops. Rome burned as it got colder. Hadrian’s Wall was built to keep out invaders at the bottom of a cold spell. Social mood always turns negative with colder climate. And that brings about riots and wars.
    Cold periods often get labeled as dark ages, because there is little advancement of living standards.
    So here we are at the top of the Modern Warm Period. Unless this time is different, the Earth is going to get a lot colder and dryer. Most likely for several hundred years. We’ll also see a major financial collapse. Yes, that’s one of the great features of the 172 year cycle. It’s happened throughout history, like clockwork.
    Let’s look at climate cycles over the past eleven thousand years … the big picture:
    In the chart above, you can see that we came out of the glacial period about ten thousand years ago.And then we had these up and down periods of warm and cold … cycles. It’s like a giant sine wave. Temperature moves up and down over time … on a fairly predictable schedule.
    Today, we’re in what’s called the Modern Warm Period. And there’s climate mania!—Even though it’s been warmer on Earth many times before and in fact the trendline shows it’s gradually getting cooler, because the Sun is cooling. Nobody disputes that—well, no astrophysicists, at any rate.
    The next cold period is signified by the dark blue blob right below Climate Mania. It’s starting now. But, how do we know all this?
    In the early to mid 1900s, Dr. Raymond Wheeler, with a team of 200 researchers analyzed climate back 20 centuries to 600 BC. He used tree rings and sunspot records to plot both temperature and rainfall over that entire period.
    He identified major climate cycles of 100, 170, 515, and 1030 years and predicted extreme weather at about the year 2000, followed by a turn colder and a long-term drought … and sure enough, that’s what seems to be happening. You can find his drought clock here. My video on Dr. Wheeler and his seasons is here.
    The picture above shows Dr. Wheeler with “The Big Book,” over 2000 pages of all his data on climate cycles in which he correlated major events throughout history. He’s shown how climate cycles repeat with event patterns over and over again. The Big Book exists in the archives of Baruch College, in New York City.
    Above is a picture of The Big Book today. I tracked it down in New York City recently.
    In Dr. Wheeler’s own words:
    The divisions of history long ago observed by historians—ancient, Medieval, and modern—are more than divisions of history. They are long climatic cycles.
    The six century BC, the first AD, the fifth AD, and the 10th and 15th were all natural turning point in history, marked each time by the decline and fall of civilizations the world over and the birth of a new era. In each case these centuries terminated 500 year cycles in long range weather trends. Each was an exceptionally cold period in history..
    The six century BC, the fifth AD, and the 15thmarked a end of the still longer cycle, on the order of 1000 years. These centuries were characterized by exceptionally profound reorganizations and revolutions in the civilizations of the world.
    Current events show that another world convulsion is occurring second only to (1) the emergence of rational thought in the sixth century BC, (2) the fall of Rome and other ancient civilizations in the 5th-century and the beginning of the medieval world based on feudalism, and (3) the final collapse of the Middle Ages in the 15th-century. The current convulsion is comparable to the birth of Christianity in the first century and to the birth of the modern nation as a fuedal principality in the ninth and 10 centuries.
    All of these reorganizations of society were marked by spurts in the evolution of democratic institutions.
    In fact, the global temperatures have gone sideways since 1998 and the recent drop in solar activity is warning of much colder times ahead.
    The head of the International Space Station, a Russian astrophysicist, with a name I can’t pronounce, has publicly predicted a mini ice age.
    Next 25 years
    The above chart shows the projection of solar maximums over the next 50 years or so. These cycles happen every 11.2 years and fluctuate in terms of their intensity over decades. The most recent solar cycle has been far less intense that previous ones and because the sun is responsible for our warmth, less intensity results in colder temperatures on Earth, just as it has during similar periods (the Little Ice Age, for example, on the “civilizations chart” above.
    The Sun and the Planets are the main drivers of climate change on our tiny, little planet—we know that. And we can’t change Mother Nature.
    Science tells us it’s going to get colder. If history is are guide, the colder climate will last for hundreds of years.
    You see, history repeats … over and over again. So if you want to know the future, you look at the past.

  5. Arnold J Pennypacker

    Echo chamber. There are so many things wrong with this article I don’t even know where to begin. It’s tone and bias is so pervasive. As hominem attacks throughout. Straw man arguments. This is ridiculous.

    Some errors in the text : Climate is different than weather. Anecdotes are not data. Krakatoa eruption significantly affected weather in Europe for decades. Taxes do affect behaviour.

    Please stop thinking “me,me,me” and start thinking of “we”.

    Side note: biggest spenders and creators of national debt have been Conservative governments under Harper and Mulroney.

  6. lyall1

    I enjoyed the style of this article more than the substance. I don’t think you can conflate Canadian politics, whatever your views, with credible international evidence of climate change and the role played by human activity. You may be interested in the views of some New Zealand scientists and commentators and some accompanying graphs etc:

  7. Bob graham

    Arnold doesn’t like his church of climate cultism attacked with logic. Perhaps he’s care outline his objections? He could start by explaining why the IPCC climate models are so badly wrong in predicting future climate, and why global temp continues to stay flat while CO2 continues to rise?

  8. Donald Lee

    Thanks Robert. I hope to bump into you someday at a “Friends of Science” event.

  9. bob graham

    I’m a little confused by your snarkiness, when you state no specifics, but simply disparagement.
    a typical retort from someone with nothing pertinent to add.

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