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The attack ads on the carbon tax shift begins. Arm yourselves! (with facts)

My title partly derives from the fact I was watching a movie last night called “The Last Legion” and felt in that sort of mood today when reading that the Conservative attack ads against the Liberals proposed carbon tax shift has begun; willingly aided  by the Toronto Sun – no surprise there (By the way, congrats to Jason for being thought of as relevant enough to warrant getting mentioned in a Conservative attack website. I’m sure he’ll put that on his belt buckle of achievements).

I actually agree with part of what the Sun and Lorrie Goldstein said as highlighted by Steve over at his blog that the Tories are very worried about this plan if they’re going to such lengths already to attack it before the details and meat of the plan have even been released, and that without having a plan of their own to point to, the Cons. could be vulnerable (that’s Lorrie’s wording, I agree with Steve – they WILL be vulnerable).

I also agree with Danielle that it’s going to be very easy to point to the utter hypocrisy John Baird and the Cons. have on this file toward a carbon tax. They could barely come up with a response to British Columbia implementing it, but now when Dion and the Federal Liberals propose something along the same vein,  “ITS A TAX ON EVERYTHING!” suddenly is the Conservatives fear mongering cry.

What I will say however to Liberal strategists and advisers is that it’s a lot easier to defend this if we actually have specifics to point to, rather then generalities. I realize Garth Turner is doing the best he can with what he knows or is allowed to talk about, but the public and the media and the bloggers need more.

The OLO or the media affairs wing of the Liberals needs to be told that, if they aren’t aware of it already. The Cons are already trying to define to the public in an unfavourable light what a terrible thing a carbon tax is. I realize it’s rather silly to be attacking a plan when all it is right now is a concept, not an official meat and potatoes policy, and I realize the last couple of polls shows the majority of Canadians seem to approve of the implementation of a carbon tax (hence the Cons. attempting to go nuclear now) but the risk is still there that without having any details on the plan, the issue gets defined negatively.

Let’s get the policy details out in the public NOW and have a full throated debate about the merits of this plan based on its specifics, so we can rebut the Cons. propaganda and fear mongering over this concept, which is all it is right now.  Let’s not wait until the general election – whenever that is. (and I am by the way a member of that Facebook group that Jim mentioned – I still believe we should be forcing an election now whether its in the summer time or not, but thats another story).

I believe the fear has been that if we release specifics now , the Cons. will copy it or attack it. Well, they’re already attacking without specifics, which is I think more dangerous,  and we have no fear they will copy this idea, so let’s get the debate over the idea on a level playing field so we have a fair fight here.

UPDATE: Remember when Al Gore warned about Harper back in 2006? Looks like his warnings have come true:

Former U.S. vice-president Al Gore has accused the oil industry of financially backing the Tories and their “ultra-conservative leader” to protect its stake in Alberta’s lucrative oilsands. Canadians, Gore said, should vigilantly keep watch over prime minister-designate Stephen Harper because he has a pro-oil agenda and wants to pull out of the Kyoto accord — an international agreement to combat climate change.

I’m thinking John Baird regrets trying to claim that Gore approved of the Coservatives so-called climate change plan to fight so-called greenhouse gases when he attempted that stunt last year. (H/T Jeff)

6 comments to The attack ads on the carbon tax shift begins. Arm yourselves! (with facts)

  • Joseph

    I wonder if this is how the Liberals should respond:

    “Stephen Harper wants to burn tires and fill Canada’s clean skies with so much smog that our children can no longer breath clean air. He also wants all Ontarians to be homeless and unemployed because he doesn’t want investment in Ontario. And since he is pals with George W. Bush, he also wants to start nuclear war in the Middle East. Oh yes, and his last cold came from drinking the blood of infants”.

    -That reply would match the intellectual depth that these Conservative attack ads have.

    Any respect that the ordinary Canadian still had for our elected officials just went out the window with this pile of manure that the Conservatives try to pass off as serious political discourse.

  • Those lefties at the American Enterprise Institute support carbon taxes. The STEPHEN HARPER Party are the ones out of step here.

  • sharonapple88

    The funny thing is that most economists appear to support support a carbon tax.

    Carbon taxes… not just supported by wacko-green liberals, but also by people who actually study the economy.

  • Colin

    In order for a tax to shape peoples behaviour through negative consequences it has to be avoidable.

    Dion’s carbon tax will not be avoidable. Every single product and service will be taxed. Gas will go up, bus fares will rise, and fresh fruit and vegetables in winter will become prohibitively expensive.

    I never thought the Liberals could top Paul Martin for sheer stupidity but this Dion guy takes the cake.

  • Observant

    It’s too late .. the Conservatives have defined Dion as the “Carbon Tax” politician and his plan is carbon tax shi(f)t. It’s a ‘tax’, and noooobody wants a ‘tax’ nohow …believe it.

    Now let’s vote .. or as Dion said after being elected Liberal leader: “We’re HOT HOT HOT !!!”.

  • slg

    Well, we know for a fact that dogs that are “scared and afraid” bark and attack.

    And, we know now for sure – Harper is controlled by big oil.

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