A Year in Review, Part I (January to June)
[:en]2022 has been a year many of us would rather forget than relive. However, given the magnitude of what has happened, and the far-reaching implications thereof, it’s important to keep these issues at the forefront of our memory and national conversation.
2022 began with a Canada divided. A bitter election in fall of 2021 saw the Trudeau Liberals returned to power with a meagre 32.6% of the vote—the lowest popular vote share in Canadian history. Rather than see this as a staggering rejection by the majority of Canadians, the Trudeau Liberals chose, instead, to double down on failed policies and discriminatory mandates.
Conservatives chose, early in the new year to replace leader Erin O’Toole and launched an election campaign that would eventually see Pierre Poilievre elected in a landslide victory.
2022 saw new federal vaccine mandates come into full effect. Federal workers, federally regulated industries, and military personnel faced a stark choice: get the shot or be put on indefinite leave without pay or access to unemployment benefits.
Truckers, hailed as heroes in the early days of COVID-19, would soon come to be cast as villains in Justin Trudeau’s media and economic war of attrition against Canadians who chose not to be vaccinated against COVID-19.
Frustrated by discriminatory mandates and provoked by Justin Trudeau’s increasingly inflammatory rhetoric, the “Freedom Convoy” rolled into Ottawa on January 28th. The Trudeau Government refused to meet with Convoy leaders and for two and a half weeks they peddled an alarmist misinformation campaign against the protesters in the media. The standoff came to head on February 14th when Trudeau invoked the Federal Emergencies Act for the first time in Canadian history.
It was a staggering overreaction: unprecedented, unjustified, and unjustifiable. Canadians saw their Charter rights further trampled as the Trudeau Government oversaw the removal of the remaining protesters, froze bank accounts, and continued to mislead Canadians. It will go down as a shameful chapter in our history, capping off what has been the disastrous premiership of Justin Trudeau.
On February 24th, Russia invaded Ukraine, launching the largest European offensive sine WWII.
NATO countries were quick to supply funds, arms, military and civilian aid to Ukraine. Canada has committed $1 billion in military and civilian aide, as well as sending military personnel to the region to help train thousands of Ukrainian fighters.
Ten months later, the war rages on. Military and civilian casualties are in the hundreds of thousands.
In March, Justin Trudeau and Jagmeet Singh announced a new confidence and supply agreement, that would see the NDP prop up the Liberal Minority (potentially) until 2025.
While not a coalition (proper) government, this agreement allowed (and continues to allow) the Liberals to govern with a de-facto majority government.
While the agreement is unlikely to last the full three years, these two leaders seemingly care more about their own personal ideology and political fortunes. As long as the Liberals continue to buy off the NDP, they are selling out Canadians.
Spring saw Canadians get whacked with record-high fuel prices and inflation. This was only exacerbated by an increase in the Liberal Carbon Tax.
Rather than axe the tax, the Trudeau Liberals continued to double down on their inflation-driving policies (more on government spending and inflation in part two).
Conservatives spent the spring fighting for an end to vaccine mandates and other federal restrictions, including the disastrous ArriveCan app—a boondoggle that saw the Liberals spend $54 million for an app that should have only cost $83,000 to develop (a drop in the bucket compared to the waste that would soon be revealed by the Auditor General).
Like many Provencher residents, I was thrilled to see the Province drop their mandates in March and the Federal Government finally give in to Conservatives (and commons sense) and follow suit in June.
Spring also showed the inability of the Liberal Government to direct the federal public service to provide the most basic government services in a timely manner. Canadians lined up for days for something as basic as a passport. When pressed by the Opposition, the Liberals fell back on their same tired talking points: spend more money, bigger government, and blame Canadians.
One other bright spot in Spring was the celebration of Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. Sadly, that joy faded far too quickly, as only three months later, Canadians would be forced to say goodbye to the woman who (for many) was the only Monarch they had ever known.
To be continued…