Sort of topic, but relevant to my earlier post: This is why I cannot stand Quebec politicians - STOOPID, STOOPID, STOOPID - and they don't have the populace behind them.
Here it is:
It's tough being the newly elected separatist government in Quebec.
They only won 31.95% of the vote, compared to 31.20% for the Liberals and 27.05% for the CAQ. And with just 54 out of 125 seats in the legislature, it's a minority government that is doomed to accomplish very little.
But solving real problems - like unemployment and corruption - has never been a forte of the Parti Quebecois.
So the new government is doing what it does best - showboating, trying to pick symbolic fights with anglos.
This time the PQ has done something really weird. They have decided to demonize - get this - English-speaking oil.
The PQ's new environment minister, a life-long protester named Daniel Breton, has decided there's a political advantage to be found in attacking Alberta oil. Technically the oil doesn't speak English, of course. But if it's produced in a place that speaks English, that's good enough for him. Get the language cops on it!
Breton has denounced the proposed reversal of a pipeline built in the 1970s to take oil from western Canada to Montreal.
Some years ago, it made economic sense to switch the direction of the oil flowing in Line 9 - to import cheaper oil from overseas, and use that same pipe to ship the oil west, to Ontario.
But the economics have changed back. Today, made-in-Canada oil is about $25 a barrel cheaper than OPEC oil that currently feeds the pipeline. So Enbridge, the company that owns the pipeline, has applied to the National Energy Board to switch the direction of the flow again.
And that's when Breton pounced. "What I see is Alberta wanting to transport its oil on our territory without our consent. Are we masters of our own territory or not?" he said.
Except it's not the province of Alberta that is doing something to the province of Quebec. It's customers in Quebec who want to buy the oil from a supplier in Alberta. But to Breton, everything is political, and a cause for outrage.
The oil isn't some sort of anglo plot. It's because there are customers in Quebec who need it. Paying a premium to the Saudis for crude oil is one reason why Quebec refineries have gone out of business in recent years.
Bringing in cheap Alberta oil might save the province's two remaining refineries - and the thousands of jobs that rely on them.
One Quebecer desperate for that anglo oil is Michel Martin. Not because he's a secret spy for Alberta, trying to undermine Quebec's distinct society. But because he wants to save the jobs of his men, at Quebec's Ultramar refinery.
"We have done everything in our power to stay competitive, so if we can't access this oil, mid- to long-term, we will be vulnerable to a closure," he said.
Martin isn't alone. A Quebec pollster, CROP, surveyed the province: Should Quebec consume Alberta oil rather than oil from foreign countries?
Seventy-four percent of Quebecers said yes. Only 14% said no. That's five-to-one for Alberta oil. No one in Quebec is nuts enough to think that using Alberta oil makes you an anglo, any more than driving a Honda makes you Japanese.
Of course, Breton isn't boycotting all oil. He's fine with Shariah oil from OPEC.
For someone who has made a career out of being a preening, morally superior twit, don't you think he has some answering to do about his own moral compass?