Why ask why?


Where would we be without the news? On Monday, for example, I learned that a world-renowned magician, David Blaine, famous for shooting himself in the face with a real rifle, made a slight error in Las Vegas last week, resulting in an ambulance ride and a news blast. Not to worry; he’s OK. Physically. But the rifle trick is just an adjunct. He built his reputation regurgitating live frogs and jumping from a 30-meter platform into a pile of cardboard boxes, for which he was rewarded with a concussion.

Kerry Knudsen
Kerry Knudsen

This makes me wonder whether there is any pastime that so purely epitomizes the idea of bad judgment as does that of being a daredevil magician. I mean, aren’t card tricks and sawing ladies in two enough? If you look at the legacy of such names as Houdini and Evel Knievel, don’t you wonder “why?”

I imagine it’s just to get attention: “Hi, there, I’m Evel Knievel and I’m going to jump the Grand Canyon on a motorcycle.”

“Really?” One might ask. “Why?”

“Well,” says Knievel, “I’m not going to jump over the big part at the National Park, and I’m going to strap a steam rocket onto my motorcycle.”

This was in the technological wasteland between baling wire and zip ties, so the conversation wanders off into esoterica regarding how, and nobody knows why.

I would think it tough for somebody like Blaine to get a date. Imagine some nice lady meeting Blaine on eHarmony. She asks, “what do you do for a living?”

“Well,” he says, “I shoot myself in the face with a rifle and I regurgitate frogs.”

Her eyes glaze over, she looks at her watch, realizes it is too early for a cut-and-run, so she asks, sweetly, “Why?”

He won’t say so, but it may have to do with people’s inherent desire to believe just about anything, and their willingness to be convinced. Couple that with a desire to be noticed on the part of the daredevil magician, and you have a marriage made in heaven. A lonely heart meets the photo-bomber from hell: “Hold this while I take a picture of me.”

Those of us that live in some parts of Canada woke up this year to discover the price of gasoline has jumped to satisfy our collective guilt about having gas. This guilt was especially felt by our MPPs on our behalf, for the citizens of Manitoba, Ontario and Quebec.

Electric power, of course, has a larger impact on small- to medium-sized businesses than it does on either big industry, which passes on the costs, or consumers, which pay the costs, but at a smaller figure. For the government, it is basically free. In fact, you can say with cap-and-trade that we pay the government, then we pay for big industry because they pass along the costs and we can’t hit our customers because they are already paying three times.

So, that’s the “how.” But we should try to know the “why.”

Why should you ask why? For one thing,  because it’s a created revenue stream, and David Suzuki and his hordes of minions have camped by the stream and are looking at you with baleful eyes. These are the mistreated puppies of society, they want money. They need the money, they assure us, for the good of all the children of future generations.

Cap-and-trade is categorically related to climate change. As you have heard, climate change used to be global cooling, but then it became global warming and now it’s global whatever. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that people have an inherent desire to believe just about anything, and a willingness to be convinced, so, as sure as the sun rises and winter comes in Canada, we all believe in climate change. We could hardly have fossils without it.

I am not unlike others, but to be convinced I want to know why the University of East Anglia, the repository of all the official data relating to global climate change, got caught falsifying that data. I mean, why?

My method of operation in researching stories is quite basic: follow the money. So we are told that we need to pay money to assuage our guilt, and we are told that by people who fly private jets to Bali to talk about it and come up with such BS ideas as cap-and-trade, and nobody would do that if the issue were not pressing. Would they?

If we follow the money, we can find that billions of research (that means tax) dollars are allocated annually to climate researchers so they can supply East Anglia with data to falsify. But that doesn’t make sense, so there must be another take.

How about, we pretend we are Dr. Evil? If you don’t know who Dr. Evil is, don’t worry. It’s a silly movie, but Dr. Evil is convinced to raise his blackmail bid from $1 million to $100 billion and beyond. So…. let’s say we have $100 billion to blow, we are guilty of using gas and we can pay penance to David Suzuki, so we send him “One Hundred Billion Dollars.”

Now, how much climate change will we measure as the result of giving David Suzuki $100 billion? The answer, of course, is none. Nothing. Not even if we throw in another $100 billion for Al Gore. Not even if we give the two of them enough to fill the Grand Canyon.

The answer is that cap-and-trade is not going to work. We learned nothing from former Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty’s multi-billion-dollar boondoggle that left him escaping Canada to Harvard and laughing up his sleeve all the way to the bank.

Let me just try to make this simple. It is bad judgment to trust politicians, academics and foundations with money to assuage your guilt. It is bad judgment to date men that regurgitate frogs and shoot themselves in the face. It is bad judgment to blackmail mankind for $100 billion dollars and it is bad judgment to fall off your motorcycle somewhere over the Grand Canyon. Unless, of course, you have a golden parachute.

As business owner, citizens and adults, we have a duty. A duty is an old and serviceable word, meaning something we must do or fail as business owners, citizens and adults. Our duty is to prevent the wealth of Canada being used to paper over the shenanigans of our Dudley Do-Right politicians and to buy the creative writers in academia one more cottage in Bali.


  • As always, very well said, Kerry. Your reference to failed climate change initiatives and the schemes behind them inspired me to inform you on how things are going with the disastrous wind farm situation. I live in the middle of the 49 turbine Dufferin Wind Farm in Melancthon township. It has destroyed over 800 acres of prime A1 agricultural land. A 230kv power line was constructed 200m from my home, emitting EMF and crackling and snapping constantly. Turbines in every direction cause a loud swooshing and thumping sound day and night and the shadow flicker is terrible, like a strobe light in our home. The MOECC constantly dismissed victims’ complaints and sides with the turbine developers. We hired an environmental lawyer to represent area victims during the ERT process that was heavily weighted in favour of the developer, which is Chinese. We lost that fight despite compelling evidence of harm to humans, endangered species, and the environment. We lost a lot of money, too. The Premier dismisses the plight of victims, as does the Prime Minister and all Ministry officials as well as the Governor General’s office. While our backstabbing, greedy neighbours collect $20,000.00 per turbine per year (some of these farmers have 6 turbines on their large land holdings), the rest of us suffer and this once beautiful area is now riddled with ugly, loud, and harmful turbines. Climate change and Green Energy Act failure at its finest. Oh, and don’t forget the effect on our hydro bills.