Was that really necessary?

The hits just keep coming. Let’s do a quick summary:

-First, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver, vocally supported by Stephen Harper, vilifies environmental groups of all stripes by labelling them anti-Canadian “radicals” and terrorists

-Next, the government guts the Environmental Assessment Act and the Fisheries Act to smooth the way for future projects, as well as capping the length of assessments at 2 years.

-With the legal environmental protections dismantled, the Conservatives turned once again to the political opposition, dismantling the National Round Table on Energy and the Environment, which routinely produced reports that disagreed with the government’s pro-oil leanings, setting aside $3-million to audit green groups, and crippling those groups’ ability to encourage participation in the review process.

Now, the government has gone one step further: in a move that seems totally unnecessary at this point, having crushed the ability of Canadians to resist projects they disagree with, the Conservatives went ahead  this week and gave themselves the power to approve pipelines, regardless of the National Energy Board decision.

So, in summary: in the last three weeks, the Conservatives have consolidated their power to push through any project they wish, while flattening the opposition. Three weeks ago, we lived in a democracy.