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Friday, December 13, 2013

Calgary Herald Editorial: Neil Young’s Hypocrisy (& The Damage Not Done)

Tar Sands Mining
Hiroshima Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada
(Click photo to enlarge)

The hypocrisy of the mainstream media never ceases to amaze in their myopic cluelessness and bumbling deceit.

Witness the unsigned editorial in the Calgary Herald - Neil Young’s hypocrisy that attempts to fault Neil Young for the "thought crime of hypocrisy" yet can not even begin to grasp the irony.

Neil Young’s announcement of the "Honor The Treaties" tour is being met with derision and scorn across Canada rather than being accepted, celebrated, recognized and valued for what it is attempting.

The editorial is simply absurd to begin with and really doesn't even merit a serious response with lines like:
But the seven-day span of his Toronto to Calgary tour precludes the use of alternative transport such as dog sleds to cross Canada’s vast, frozen territory.
Dog sleds? Really?

The very un-Canadian Calgary Herald fails to mention the terrible price in terms of health that the local Fort Mcmurray citizens are being hit with by increased cancer rates.

Canadian Tar Sands Oil Field
Near Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada
(Click photo to enlarge)

In child-like fashion, the Calgary Herald editorial seems to say, "Hey, we're not so bad. Look at the USA!":
As for industrial wastelands, Young might want to take a look at the land in his home state of California swallowed up by asphalt to accommodate millions of gas-guzzling, carbon-emitting vehicles. Or at the multitude of open-pit coal mines responsible for carbon emissions that dwarf the impact of the oil produced in Fort Mac.
So just because the USA has a terrible environmental record also, that makes it OK for Canada? What's wrong is simply plain wrong. Just because the USA does it, does not make it right. Grow up Calgary Herald and don't look south for leadership.

We could go on taking apart the poorly argued editorial but feel that we've already addressed all of the false arguments already in previous posts here, here, here, here, and here.

"Fort McMurray looks like Hiroshima. Fort McMurray is a wasteland."
~~Neil Young

Press Conference for National Farmers Union
Washington, DC, September 10, 2013
Photo by thrashette


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At 12/13/2013 08:16:00 AM, Anonymous Helena Sorel said...

At 12/13/2013 08:34:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

...I think that the reference to dog sleds is probably meant to be ironic in itself, Thrasher. They are not seriously suggesting Neil should go and round up the huskies! They are pointing out the impracticalities that Neil is struggling with. And I guess it's a reasonable point.

But personally I'm impressed to see Neil standing up for causes like this, and I would expect nothing less of him. As you rightly say, the people who point out all signs of hypocrisy are so often the most hypocritical themselves! That is undeniably correct.

Neil sometimes has a tendency to support these causes without making many major lifestyle changes of his own.....but perhaps it's more achievable to change yourself first, than it is to change the world straight away.

Neil can inspire many people through his speeches, or songs, or allegiances with various causes etc. But change really starts with the self, as I'm sure by now he is well aware. He is at his best when he is leading by example.

And it's the same for the rest of us, too. Instead of pointing out Neil's hypocrisies, how about we instead spend the same time addressing our own ones? Just an idea.

The Flying Scotsman

At 12/13/2013 08:34:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Summertime UPDATE:

July 10: Live at the Marquee, Cork, Ireland
July 12: Hyde Park, London, England
July 20: Münsterplatz, Ulm, Germany
July 25: Warsteiner HockeyPark, Mönchengladbach, Gemany
July 26: Filmnächte am Elbufer, Dresden, Germany
July 28: Zollhafen Nordmole, Mainz, Germany
August 5, Lokeren, Belgium

At 12/13/2013 08:49:00 AM, Anonymous SD said...

"Waaaah Neil Young disagrees with something I am in favour of" - every reaction basically.

If Neil had come out rah-rah in favour of oil sands or whatever, these people would be grovelling at his doorstep. They would say that he's the most brilliant knowledgeable musician around these days, because it would conform to their beliefs.

Nothing to see here.

At 12/13/2013 08:51:00 AM, Blogger Raincheck said...

I admire Neil for taking action, especially when it is direct action like Linc Volt or Farm Aid. He's a passionate dude and he speaks his mind.

As for me .... I don't get my politics from musicians or my music from politicians.

At 12/13/2013 09:49:00 AM, Blogger dave hardisty said...

Mr. Young <<>> THANK YOU for your effort in bringing this situation to "some" forfront. A bit back you questioned yourself asking "just how far should I go?". ALL the way Neil. As you WELL know ~~Any "press" is GOOD press !

At 12/13/2013 10:47:00 AM, Blogger Old Black said...

We are all hypocrits and it is good for all of us to sometimes take a step back and recognize that.

It's a tough thing - minimizing our impact on the environment. We want it all. Calgary is an oil town, plain and simple and its economy is heavily driven by oil sands investments. Iowa is a corn state and its economy is heavily driven by corn ethanol. Both have considerable environmental impacts - both in the production and in the use. Ethanol and petroleum are commodities that live in the sphere of world-wide demand.

It's a tough thing. Gotta change yourself before you change your brother but do so with great humility because we are all hypocrits.

At 12/13/2013 11:05:00 AM, Blogger Thrasher Wheat said...

Thanks The Flying Scotsman, Old Black and others.

This hypocrisy business is a bit frustrating and we tried to address that on the earlier thread in the comments. As you guys mention, everyone is a hypocrite as some point.

But in the here and now, what are you/we doing to make a difference going fwd?

That's what matters.

Be the rain.

"We're The Ones We've Been Waiting For"

At 12/13/2013 11:51:00 AM, Anonymous regular stairs said...

As the saying goes: "If you are taking flak, it only means you are on target"! Common sense dictates that Neil will need to burn fuel to get to gigs, as will the attendees. Until we can all hologram to the great gig in the cloud, fuel is needed. And even when the holo-gigs come, some blow hole will bitch about "Neil's not considering the earth when he wastes for his holo-gigs" But maybe we will be able to rage against holo-Neil for all eternity? We can only hope...

At 12/13/2013 03:47:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thrasher is the typical leftist who bows at the altar of what his masters tell him to bow down to. The platitudes are numerous throughout the years here - empty hollow clichés of nothingness. Thank you to the Calgary Herald for calling Neil out on his hypocrisy. If only Neil would take a lesson from the once great Cat Stevens who actually put into practice what his faith teaches (unfortunately for Cat that meant following a murderous death cult of stone age fools). Stop touring Neil if the so-called carbon footprint is such a big deal. Think for yourself, Thrasher.

At 12/13/2013 04:21:00 PM, Blogger Thrasher Wheat said...

@ regular stairs - thanks. Yes, we seem to be on target as a target. As we sometimes like to say, if we're not pissing off someone, we're not doing our job.

By the looks of all the flak coming our way, we're feeling very good today.

@03:47:00 - and what makes you think we're a leftist? If you were following along, you'd know by now that we've transcended the left/right paradigm. It's a false construct of the elites to keep us fighting amongst ourselves.

Divide and conquer.

Join us and walk with us. United we stand divided we fall. We're all in this together on the same side... the human race.

Wake up. Don't get fooled yet again.

peace & love

At 12/13/2013 04:55:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Guys, just so you know: the report that you linked about high cancer rates in Fort Chip is based on the work of Dr John O Connor who was exposed as a fraud in 2009. He made up the data to conform with his political views on oil sands development. It's a common mistake as many environmentalists continue to ignore the discovery as it doesn't fit the agenda. O Connor is currently inn Europe trying to sell his fake research on unwitting European environmentalists. The guy is a sociopath.

At 12/13/2013 06:20:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

@Anonymous 04:55:00 PM: According to this article, O'Connor was cleared of any wrongdoing. It also says: "Thanks to Dr. O'Connor's efforts, the government of Alberta finally undertook a study of cancer rates in Fort Chipewyan, finding that what Dr. O'Connor said was true - there was a higher incidence of cancer than expected."


At 12/13/2013 06:24:00 PM, Blogger Thrasher Wheat said...

Thanks David.

Go figure. When the facts don't support your case, you attack the messenger.

So who's really the sociopath here?

The purveyors of truth? Or lies?

hint: The Doubters

At 12/14/2013 06:03:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The author of this article is missing out on a few points. He's true about Neil Young using a lot of fossil fuel to tour and promote his cause against oil sands, but the author don't seem to get the whole picture. Neil said a couple of years ago that using fossil fuel is the ONLY way to fuel your car, beacuse Big Oil has the power in the economics and politics (corruption smelling long away). It's the same in Europe, trust me. So that's why he created LincVolt to show the possibility in driving big american cars on alternative fuels. How in earth could LincVolt be driven around the country if there isn't any "alternative gas stations"? If there were, Neil at least shows that there is a way to get around, so he needs to travel and be out there, show the world what can be done. If he was to spread his message from home via let's say internet, Big Oil would benefit from it since the impact from a written message isn't to be compared to people discussing in persona.

If you believe Neil is right about this (just follow the money), it's hard to call him a hypocrite. Dig a little further please.

Now I don't want to discuss why change is going extremely slow (backwards?) but what if Big Oil would invest their profit in research for renewable energy? In that way they could still have monopoly and we would get a cleaner planet faster. My two cents. Take care!

-Neil from Sweden

At 12/14/2013 11:58:00 AM, Blogger Thrasher Wheat said...

Thanks Neil from Sweden.

Good points. NY has said "Where's the freedom of choice?"

That is the essence of what LV is about. Many do not want to support Big Oil, Big War, Big Ag, etc.

But what can we do if the monopolies preclude alternatives?

That's what the fight is always about... freedom.

Break the monopoly slavery.

Do the right thing -- honor the treaties.


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