The Trudeau government recently released its regulatory impact statement – including a cost/benefit analysis – explaining the plan to make Canada an all-electric-vehicle nation by 2035. James R. Coggins takes a deep dive into the document and finds it full of wishful thinking and sloppy logic. It also excludes many of the biggest costs consumers and taxpayers will face in the shift to electric cars and trucks. If the Liberals confronted the real costs and benefit of their policy, they’d have to admit that forcing Canadians to go electric will be as impractical as it is pricey. Those amazing and expensive electric pickup trucks? They won’t get you very far with a load in tow.
It’s hard not to like electric vehicles. Or rather, it is becoming hard to express open dislike of them. They’re green, clean, quiet, fast, subsidized – and “free” to operate. And if the Liberal government has its way, EVs will soon be the only cars you can buy. It’s all settled! But perhaps it shouldn’t be. James Coggins parts the curtain of EV virtue-signalling and poses some basic questions that should have been answered by now if Canada is to cruise smoothly into its battery-operated future. Car owners and families, brace yourselves for a severe jolt, for Coggins uncovers a yawning vacuum of answers regarding the very fundamentals of building, financing and powering Canada’s soon-to-proliferate EV fleet.
Time was that riding public transit was a tad déclassé, reserved for kids, little old ladies and people who hadn’t quite arrived, or never would. Songs like The Guess Who’s “Bus Rider” depicted its dreariness and repetitiveness. Nowadays, hopping the LRT or subway is cool, a virtuous act signalling environmental wokeness and “moving on” from the automobile. The riding experience, naturellement, needs to meet the steep expectations of current gens. And that doesn’t come cheap. James R. Coggins outlines the political game played by federal and municipal politicians that’s seeing tens of billions of dollars being shovelled into city coffers for lavish urban transit schemes, while country dwellers pay part of the freight and receive little but neglect and carbon taxes in return.
Promising to upend entire sectors of the economy with no costs or other downsides has become so habitual on the political left that it has almost faded to political background noise. But the costs are real – in few areas more so than “alternative”, “green” or “sustainable” energy. The Green Party’s claim to conjure up millions of jobs by driving down emissions is an instalment in this fantasy genre. James Coggins systematically dissects one aspect of the Green program – its plan to plaster millions of Canadian rooftops with solar panels – and finds it wanting.
Do you ever feel that “progressive” politics is mainly about denying basic realities? Cities are great economic engines, but their dynamism rests on a foundation of natural advantages that, writes James R. Coggins, we would be fools to ignore and self-destructive to deny. Vancouver’s left-leaning political establishment, however, seems hell-bent on constructing a utopia of parallel realities that, Coggins argues, spit in the eye of Vancouver’s economic drivers and, if not confronted, can only lead to a great city’s decline.
The National Women’s Hockey League earlier this week announced it is expanding into Toronto. Stephen Harper’s book, A Great Game: The Forgotten Leafs and the Rise of Professional Hockey, recounts the troubled relationship between Hogtown and pro hockey. For James. R. Coggins, the book’s undeclared subtext is that hockey (and Canada) wins when Toronto loses.
A Google search of “Justin Trudeau apology” produces over 600,000 hits. Since we published James Coggins’ story “Who Are Government Apologies Really For?” last fall, the prime minister has issued two more apologies for things other governments did; to the Inuit for Ottawa’s handling of tuberculosis in the mid-20th century; and to Indigenous alumni of residential schools in Newfoundland and Labrador. That raises his total to six, the most ever by a PM.
The City of Vancouver officially aspires to be “the greenest city in the world”. But if it could see beyond the tip of its upturned nose, it would realize that its transit and land-use policies are dumping its traffic and pollution problems on neighbouring cities and towns in the Fraser Valley. James Coggins, eyewitness to the environmental carnage wreaked by Vancouver’s selfish green virtuousness, reports.