It has taken our current provincial government a long time to understand that when dealing with Ottawa and other provinces a position of guarded antagonism allied to constant grievance is the posture to hold.
Trying to co-operate by playing the honest broker and concerned Canadian citizen will result in your political career eventually going off a cliff and your province getting seriously shafted.
It has been that way since Confederation — hey, B.C. didn’t happily join back in 1871 but only later bother asking the feds if they’d build that railway through the Rockies.
Not us, though. We merrily jumped about the Trudeau carbon tax bandwagon before getting a pipeline. Ouch: that’s not how it’s done in Canada.
That’s because the world’s second-largest country is a land of trade-offs and bartering, where each province has its own priorities that barely register in the consciousness of other Canadians, living thousands of kilometres away.
Do we Albertans really care about Atlantic fishing quotas, Quebec hydro sales or Ontario’s car industry? Actually, we care as much as the public stink those different regions make about such issues.
So finally, after years of trying the “hold hands and sing kumbaya” approach, that particular dime has dropped — we don’t have pennies any more — and now we are playing hardball and making a fuss.