If Pigs Can Fly

Hi, it’s me again. Newshawk. Before I’m accused of stating fake facts I want to make some corrections.  Got a little excited last time.  And the keyboard’s mine again because although Munroe did come around for a spell he’s now in a funk saying everybody’s gone down the rabbit hole except for the BC government and some First Nations.  But what the hell do I know. I’m just an insect.

Anyway, I got a couple of things wrong last time.  First: About Justin’s pitch that “the economy and the environment go hand in hand” – remember? I said “the PM may mean hand-in-hand like when a cop grabs your hand and twists your arm up behind your back until your shoulder is ready to dislocate.” – that’s correct – I’m not taking that back — no way – but then I said (or wrote, or typed, or stomped – let’s not get picky or you’ll think Munroe’s writing again) – I said the grip was what Big Fossil Fuel’s got on B.C.   But I was wrong.  Justin’s “hand-in-hand” blarney describes the old shoulder dislocate grip that Big Fossil’s got on Alberta and Ottawa – and on Justin himself.  Not on B.C.

Of course me being little and not keen on being stepped on I’m rooting for B.C. against Big Fossil Fuel – which I think from now on I’ll just call Big FFF. In case you don’t know what the first F stands for let me – oh, oh – the old boy has just shuffled over here and is peering down on my text –

Whoo-e-e e– That’s a relief! He’s gone away again, after muttering something about “don’t forget Elijah Harper”.

Hey, good point! I do remember Elijah Harper.

Chief Elijah was a Cree who was a minister in the Manitoba NDP government.  He brought a whole proposed Constitutional amendment – I think they called it the Meech Lake Accord – he brought it crashing to a stop by simply waving a feather that said “NO”. “No” because the First Nations weren’t at the final parley. No consultation. Interesting rules. People forget.

Oh, oh, Munroe’s coming back again. I hope he doesn’t think I’m going to start taking dictation. No bloody way. I’d have to be a Nijinsky to dance out some of his words —-

Good. He’s ambled on by.  But still muttering.  All I caught was – “–been here before – mumble mumble — Great Pipeline Debate – mumble mumble — fatal Liberal arrogance again – mumble mumble –” I’m not sure but I think there was a 1957 in there somewhere.  Long before my time. My god, these nonagenarians (dance that on your QWERTY keyboard — talk about ballet!) – these ancients seem to go back before everything.

Sorry. Let’s do a reset here and get back on track. I had a second repair to make.

I quoted Munroe last time as saying something about Justin’s dad, Pierre, being a sophistry expert, and it having something to do with Jesuit training. I even said it sounded questionable to me. But I’ve been doing some thinking. Yes, me and my so-called insect brain.

If you simply click on your computer’s dictionary – and I did – it’ll like as not say sophistry is “the use of false arguments, especially to deceive.”  So there.  Lying.

But do I think that Munroe was accusing either Justin or his dad of being liars? Surely not! So I caught him after he’d had an afternoon snooze and was momentarily approachable and this is what he said:

 “Lying? No, no, no. Sophistry is a skilled arguing technique. It simply has to do with changing the premise.  Look, environmentalists and scientists say to Justin that Big Fossil Fuel –“

Big FFF.

“Okay, Big FFF.”

Better still, Triple Big F.

“Whatever. They say to Justin that Triple Big F will, if not curbed, eventually kill us all. Does he debate that? Not at all.  He changes the premise and says ‘the environment and the economy go hand in hand’.  But it’s a false premise that simply sounds reasonable. We’re sucked into debating with that as the basic proposition when a little thought would tell us that a healthy but finite global environment and an economy based on unfettered expansion of Triple Big F are polar opposites.  We buy the false premise and based on it the resulting debate is logical but total madness.  Only by using that false premise  can one logically invoke the ‘National Interest’ on behalf of Triple Big F.”

Now I’m no scholar and the old boy claims he’s forgotten more than he ever knew but my wee brain wanted him to spell that out not using any words bigger than two syllables.  So he went all literary on me.

“H.G.Wells, you know, the chap who was a pioneer sci-fi writer. War of the Worlds and all that. Wells explained the art of writing fantasy and gave an example.  State the premise that ‘Pigs can fly’.  If your reader accepts that then the writer makes everything that follows absolutely logical. But it’s all based on the premise that Pigs can Fly.”

But Justin’s not writing fantasy sci-fi !

“Indeed he’s not.  And there’s the problem.”

So you’re telling me that Justin and Alberta and Big Triple F are basing the future of everything on a Pigs can Fly type of premise?

“Well said.”


Copyright©Munroe Scott 2018


About Munroe Scott

Munroe Scott is a veteran of the freelance writing world.
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4 Responses to If Pigs Can Fly

  1. Ken Ranney says:

    Thank you so much for this very apt metaphor. If fits not only Trudeau’s false statement that “the economy and the environment go hand in hand”, but the attitude of the Western nations in withholding action on stopping climate change. At a time when CO2 in the atmosphere is already far too high, they offer us a carbon tax which, if it works at all, will, after a long time of making CO2 in the atmosphere even higher, (during which time God knows how ferocious the climate will be) will slow it down, a little. What we need is obvious: to get off fossil fuels (or FFF) and on to sustainable electricity for all our energy needs right away. But that would not suit the FFF industry, which must be extremely happy that it has bamboozled us into thinking that Pigs can Fly.

    • Munroe Scott says:

      Thank you Ken (Dr. Ken )for your input. I couldn’t agree with you more. I really feel we’ve come to the point where a real line in the sand must be drawn as a transition point beyond which Fossil Fuel production is no longer permitted to expand.

  2. glynniscampbell says:

    As an American (please contribute your “sorries” in this space), I’m beginning to think it’s going to take a multinational uprising to curtail Big FFF. Our representatives are no longer beholden to We the People, but to the billionaires who finance their campaigns. But if we can boycott wherever possible, with solar energy and electric cars, maybe we can hit them where it hurts–in their wallets. Eleven years ago, I was in the filming audience for Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth,” and I can’t believe we’re still having to fight for the environment.

    • Munroe Scott says:

      Glynnis — great to hear a voice from the south. You’re right. It really does look as though it’s going to take a “multinational” uprising. But we need a Gandhi to lead it peacefully and I don’t see one around. (Sorry). What really bugs me is the fact that Justin’s adamant determination to support FFF expansion can’t really be explained by campaign funding from billionaires as in your country. (Sorry). That funding here is much more tightly controlled. No corporation or union donations and there are caps on the amounts from individuals. Of course with all the trade bargaining underway there could be all kinds of backroom deals going on. Incidentally, I heard a great Pigs can Fly statement on TV last evening from an Alberta pipeline booster — “We need the pipeline because the pipeline needs to be built.”

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