Hasan Minhaj roasts Justin Trudeau on climate hypocrisy

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/09/06/bumbling-princeling.html


Virtually anybody who has both power and climate-change ambitions can be caught in this trap. The logical extension of not having a pipeline is to just not produce oil at all. The only really moral position that Minaj could have accepted as complete would have been the oil equivalent of the “arms to Saudi” answer: we’ll stop producing it entirely. Anything less is, well, the same as the pipeline question: we sell oil to people so they can burn it. Minaj would hardly have accepted “well, we’ll sell Saudi 10% less arms” as a great moral victory, so why would “we’ll sell 10% less oil than we would have with the pipeline” be something to celebrate?

Trudeau was my political hero five years ago for just coming out foursquare for legalization of cannabis; not even the “decriminalization” half-measure that all of our political parties had been floating for 45 years, off and on.

I’m waiting for the guy who just comes out and says, "the only climate crime is burning the stuff; as long as people keep doing that, like your film crew did when they flew up here instead of taking the bus and burning several barrels less oil at the expense of a lot of your time and therefore money, somebody will sell it to them. "

“If all the legitimate producers were shut down, people would start dying from the lack of farmed food, transportation for it, shelter…and a black market for it would spring up, just as it did for drugs. Beating up the producers didn’t work on drugs for 60 years, and it won’t work to restrict consumption of oil. So the real climate war is to find alternatives that people will switch to voluntarily; restricting production will raise the price a bit, with almost no effect on consumption; a 600% price rise in the early 70s only reduced consumption by 8%, then it started going back up again. The real climate war is actually being fought hard in Alberta, which has put in the largest windfarms and solar farms in the country.”

But, nobody wants to go there: it’s pointing the finger right back at the audience and shaming them for taking the plane and buying the SUV - when they don’t actually have many alternatives right now and don’t feel they deserve a guilt-trip.

So everybody does this dance where they make environmental gestures. I wish Trudeau had the political courage to just come out with the “it’s the consumption, stupid” argument, but he’s feeling pretty vulnerable right now. I’m astonished he let a satirist, of all people, interview him; that’s still a fair bit of courage. A pity his opposition would never let a satirist within the same building.


A brutal but necessary interview. I doubt anyone viewing it will come to the conclusion that it endorses Scheer or the racist guy, so if it holds Trudeau’s feet to the fire and forces him to work more with the NDP and the Greens when it comes to combatting climate change it’s valuable.


I truly believe that Trudeau was made liberal party leader because he is a pretty boy that will say all the lines feed to him. He never was a leader, just a distraction so the liberals can keep doing the same things they always were going to do, which coincidentally are the same things the conservatives were going to do but with less deliberate malice.


Well, that and also the justly revered family name. The only contemporary politician I’ve seen who comes close to his father in terms of combining extreme charisma with a stratospheric intellect is Obama. Justin shares his father’s superficial charisma and good looks, but not much else.

From what I’ve read and followed in the news, the Liberals don’t seem able or particularly willing to exorcise a deep strain of institutional pro-corporate corruption from the party, especially when it comes to their dealings with energy and energy-service industries.


You’re forgetting Bombardier, which just manufactures stuff.

Also, once, again, he came out for legalization. When the opposition were actually hauling out 25-year-old your-brain-on-drugs ads with the egg in the frypan. You can’t say “it’s crazy to be against legalization” for 45 years, as good lefties have, and then give zero credit when somebody goes out way ahead of the field to champion it, at what at the time seemed a significant risk. Yes, “everybody knows that’s politically feasible” NOW, but when he came out in early 2013, it was not.

That picked up a lot of votes.

Oh, yeah, and then there was immigration; Trudeau came out for more of it, and more refugee acceptance, when the opposition were pushing it away and making alt-right-y noises about terrorists and whatnot. That gained him votes, too, and was not an obvious win at the time.


I’m willing to give him a cookie for legalisation of pot, just like I am for any socially liberal policy that needs to be implemented but has no serious political cost (and it really didn’t in 2013, either).

I do agree that immigration was a more risky move, especially given the deeply ingrained racism and xenophobia in Francophone Quebec, so I’ll give him a little more credit there. If he’s smart he’ll use the gains he made and the international acclaim as a bludgeon against the Conservatives and The Racist Party.


Basically, right now, Trudeau is acting like a member of the Progressive Conservatives , and not even my favorite one (yes, I do have one I like), and it’s still a better alternative than Scheer’s Conservative Party (Bernier is off the map).

I’ve also heard rumblings about Singh… and the likelihood of the NDPs making a breakthrough this election and pulling off what to now has been impossible are… let’s just say Singh is no Jack Layton.

Funny thing when you talk about Trudeau charisma. Justin’s is a different flavor than his father. Pierre could charm crowds but pissed people off in person. He could be autocratic and a control freak. Justin isn’t the orator his father was, but people report that one-on-one he’s extremely charismatic and convincing.

There’s good reason for that. We know now that Margaret (Justin’s mother) is bipolar and was untreated throughout his childhood. Kids who grow up with parents like that usually get very good at reading people and at reaching them in different stages of irrationality (I don’t just mean Margaret – any highly intelligent person who picks a career where you argue for a living can have points where they care more about winning the debate than accepting the truth).

It’s a funny thing. Trump thinks he has good negotiating skills because he comes from a long line of businessmen, so therefore he must. Justin Trudeau does, because he’s probably had to do it since he was a kid.

In fact, a lot of the things that have gotten Justin in trouble as a politician are the kneejerk reactions common to kids that have grown up in those types of households. Both our leaders are showing that it’s hard to shake our upbringing, especially when under stress.Trump is still trying to show how competent he is to a man who never really liked him or had time for him. Justin just wants everybody to stop yelling and has unfortunately found himself in a position where he can’t just get away.


That’s a fascinating perspective, regarding growing up in that household. If no-one has written up a full article on that, you should really consider it.

That describes my great uncle, who gave up his first career to basically argue for a living as a pundit. I loved him, and he was brilliant and charming and funny, but I saw first-hand how he screwed up his kids something fierce because he was always subjecting them to debating tactics and demanding they act like adoring students as a condition of his attention.

I don’t doubt that about Justin. One-on-one, Pierre was apparently a mixed bag: if he respected a person (rare), was personally fond of them (sometimes), or was sexually attracted to her (often), he was mesmerising; otherwise, he’d just handle them according to how he read them and what he needed from them, varying from bullying to impressing to charming.

Justin just goes for charming as the default, public or one-on-one, and he succeeds. I also think he does a much better job with social media than Pierre would have (his father had a lot of contempt for journalists and others who asked stupid, empty questions – he was like De Gaulle in that way).

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That would take more hunting down of citations than I have the spoons for at the moment. And it’s not like I was there. I don’t have specific details, but it’s based on what we do know about his parents. There’s a lot of public record out there on both of them. We also know how kids in similar situations learn to adapt: and a lot of what Justin does makes sense seen through the lens of those kinds of adaptations.


It’s an interesting perspective in any case, so thanks for sharing it.


Your analysis, if we can call it that, is a) unoriginal, b) highly speculative and c) lacking any specifics or evidence whatsoever. But hey, that’s pretty much par for the course these days…

Indeed. Easy to condemn politicians for their lack of climate action; meanwhile the vast majority of us continue to burn through fossil fuels like there’s no tomorrow. Pun intended. That said, Trudeau betrayed all Canadians with the decision to buy the Trans Mountain pipeline to the tune of $4.5 Billion. Being pragmatically pro-pipeline is one thing; using the public purse to advance the cause, while fully aware of the harm it is doing to the environment and future generations quite another.

I’d much rather have a Trudeau who only delivers on 25% of his promises than a Scheer (leader of the opposition party) who delivers on 100% of his.


this is a really good take

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The truth of it is he did not betray ALL Canadians. As one living in Alberta (home of oilsands) these pipelines and heavy industry directly benefit a substantial tax base. Before you castigate me for being redneck, I’m the guy who wants to drive an electric car, have solar panels, eat local, etc - but a significant percentage of my best friends make a living in the oil industry. I work in healthcare - but guess what: that too is funded by the same oilpatch revenue (alongside tax dollars). Vicious cycle - but perhaps there is a saying: If you live on the ocean, better get used to fishing.

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An interesting look at how idealism got bent.


Some of my “best friends” are “rednecks”! I thought I made it pretty clear I was agnostic on the whole pipeline thing, in regards government policy. Spending $4.5 Billion in taxpayer’s dollars on an antiquated pipeline however, when no one can argue the oil industry is in need of government assistance, is reckless and asinine to the extreme. That’s four and a half thousand piles of a million dollars! I guess my kids will pay for it, one day? And FYI the whole appeal to “revenue” argument is a logical fallacy; there was a time when farriers would have said the exact same thing.

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But he’s so pretty.
If you’re gonna get fucked wouldn’t you prefer pretty over the big orange turd?

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