As a dues paying member of the blogosphere, I feel compelled to do at least one of the annual blogs: the year in review, or the predictions column. Since the year in review blog takes lots of work, guess which way I’m going? Besides, it’s really easy to write a predictions blog, because you can predict only what you want to talk about, and by the end of the year, nobody remembers any of what you’ve said.
Prediction no. 1: RIP Keystone XL
The Keystone XL pipeline was first proposed in 1922 to transport kerosene from Alberta’s vast kerosene fields, or something like that. It has taken this long to get to a decision, and I can say without a doubt that it will not be approved. President Barack Obama, freed from worrying about how his decisions will impact the mid-term elections (he lost), will certainly say no to the plan, regardless of what congress and the senate says. He has repeatedly signalled his disdain for the project, saying that it will only benefit Canada (not true). With the price of oil falling through the floor, and America awash in the stuff, there is no chance Keystone will get the presidential seal of approval. If I ran TransCanada, the pipeline proponents, I would withdraw the bid now. Then, in 10 years when the U.S. is begging for Canadian oil, no matter how ‘dirty’, I’d build a three-storey-high extended middle finger and put it right at the border.
Prediction no. 2: The federal election will be decided by the TV debates
It’s an election year here in Canada, and the situation is fluid (the only thing that is fluid in his frozen landscape). While support for Justin Trudeau’s Liberal party remains high, nothing has shaken Conservative Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s bedrock of support. Poor Thomas Mulcair of the NDP has found that being an excellent leader of the opposition gets you grudging admiration and a third-place standing in the polls. I think the election will hinge on the campaign, specifically the debate(s). We all know Harper will remain as unflappable as unyielding as a sphinx; in 10 years as prime minister, the guy has made maybe one verbal pratfall
(he called the Keystone pipeline “a no-brainer”). Mulcair is very quick on his feet and smart as hell. All eyes will be on Trudeau and whether he can play ball with the big boys. Canadians worried about Trudeau’s intellectual capacity — and that would be pretty much everyone — will be judging Trudeau on this performance. It could decide the election.
Prediction no. 3: Harper will win a minority
I just threw up a little in my mouth.
Prediction no. 4: Jim Prentice will win a majority for the PCs.
This is like predicting the sun will rise tomorrow, or that the PCs will win the Alberta election.
Prediction no. 5: Danielle Smith’s political career will end
Floor crossers sometimes win and sometimes lose. But there has never been a floor-crossing LEADER, and I’m certain the good people of Danielle Smith’s riding will let her know, loudly and clearly, what they thought of her actions. Most of the ex-Wildrose weasels will face the same fate.
Prediction no. 6: Winter will be cold, and sometimes not so cold.
Sorry, but I had to end on a sure bet.
(Finally, WordPress, the program I use for this blog, reports 18,300,771 new blogs were produced in 2014. Thank you for choosing this blog to read with all that competition.)