This January the Trump inauguration looms like an apple-pie version of a 1930s style Nuremberg rally. The appointment of some of the nastiest reactionaries going have belied Trump’s ‘calming’ words since winning the presidency.
Opposition is gathering pace in the US, including a national sick-out on inauguration day (20 January), with US residents refusing to either work or consume, and a mass women’s march in Washington DC the following day to protest the misogynist-in-chief.
Across the world, actions are planned to support US resistance. Aside from promises of attacks on minorities, mass deportations, glorification of police power, cutbacks for the poor and giveaways to the rich, it is our environment and climate which are perhaps most at risk.
Over the northern border, Canadians in particular are feeling the heat of the Trump agenda and its potential to undermine already feeble efforts to stop climate degradation.
After almost a decade of inaction and denial by Stephen Harper’s Conservative government, Justin Trudeau’s Liberals have made much of their commitments to an ambitious 30-per-cent reduction in climate pollution by 2030. But the idea that ‘Canada is back’ to fulfil its international responsibilities is now under serious question.
Canada’s petro-economy, which peddles some of the world’s dirtiest bitumen oil, is already undermining Trudeau’s climate-change pieties. Three new pipelines have just been approved to help export Alberta oil to the US and overseas.
With Trump in power, all US restrictions on shale, oil, gas and coal are likely to be lifted and the controversial Keystone XL pipeline nixed by Obama stands to be given the green light.
Even the idea of a national carbon tax (Trudeau’s only real, if inadequate, amelioration initiative) looks shaky as anti-tax proponents stoke fears of capital flight across the border to Trump’s carbon-tax-free US.