Back when Conservatives could be “progressive” too…

… there was a guy named Brian Mulroney. He was our Prime Minster. A lot of folks didn’t like the man very much. They saw him as arrogant, too pro-American and as the force behind the much-maligned GST (the ill feelings about that tax still linger today… and are completely unwarranted).

But tomorrow is the 21st anniversary of the signing of the US /Canada Air Quality Agreement, and he should be given credit for that and the other environmental initiatives that he spearheaded as PM. This Agreement, along with the Green Plan, set Canada into a position as a leader in environmental initiatives and research. A lot of lakes would have otherwise become acidified and died if it were not for this Agreement.

Of course, that was then and this is now… where Canada is really just a laughingstock on the environmental front.

Sigh. Thanks Mr. Mulroney. I really didn’t like you much for other reasons, but you were at the crest of the wave. You were by far, the greenest of our PMs to date.

And you and your colleagues were indeed progressive.

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2 Comments to “Back when Conservatives could be “progressive” too…”

  1. Hold on to the Dream says:

    Glad you’re posting this. A lot of folks have forgotten and we should not.

    There’s a great paper written by a Harvard prof some years back on the history of environmental governance between Canada and the US. It discusses a lot of the background politics and negotiations that went into the Air Quality Agreement and others.

    http://qed.econ.queensu.ca/pub/cpp/SE_english/Parson.pdf

  2. Chris says:

    And don’t forget he spawned Ben — Canada can be forever in his debt for that. How many celebrity boots have Harper’s kids licked on behalf of Canadians everywhere, eh?

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