by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Canada is now governed by absurdism, and it is symptomatic of an ailing Western elite.
Liberal Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau last week invoked martial law to arrest and financially destroy truckers on the charge that their largely peaceful protests are “dismantling the Canadian economy” that had already been dismantled for two years under some of the most draconian lockdowns in the world. The trucker “sect,” Trudeau added, is guilty of felonious “unacceptable views.” But his rhetoric still cannot square the circle of demonizing vital workers while conceding he cannot run his country without them.
He has invoked the Emergencies Act for the first time in the law’s 34-year history, even as the highly infectious Omicron variant wanes after spreading natural immunity and yet proving relatively mild in its effects. Trudeau has neither science nor good governance on his side, especially given how civil the protests have been. The truckers, who more or less work in solitary cabs, are better informed about the “science” and are themselves mostly vaccinated.
Whether by accident or intent, the truckers have now become iconic of far larger issues. Their resistance to government vaccination mandates transcends them. And so, they are playing the role of the proverbial straw that may break the back of a once compliant Canadian citizenry, burdened by over two years of masks, lockdowns, and vaccination mandates.
They are Howard Beales yelling, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!” or the iconic Tunisian peddler Tarek el-Tayeb Mohamed Bouazizi whose self-immolation prompted the Arab Spring, or Tank Man who stood erect in Tiananmen as an oncoming tank finally swerved around him. The truckers are saying to the Canadian people, “Watch and we will kindly show you why you always privately suspected that this prime minister and his ilk were frauds.”