The ineptitude of our so-called leaders

Matt Taibbi:

The White House issued a statement Friday, after Joe Biden chatted with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau:

The two leaders agreed that the actions of the individuals who are obstructing travel and commerce between our two countries are having significant direct impacts on citizens’ lives and livelihoods… The Prime Minister promised quick action in enforcing the law, and the President thanked him for the steps he and other Canadian authorities are taking to restore the open passage of bridges to the United States.

Translation: Biden told Trudeau his testicles will be crushed under a Bradley Fighting Vehicle if this trucker thing is allowed to screw up the Super Bowl, or Biden’s State of the Union address. Trudeau’s own statement that day came off like the recorded video message of a downed pilot:

I’ve been absolutely clear that using military forces against civilian populations, in Canada, or in any other democracy, is something to avoid having to do at all costs.

An anxious Trudeau promised to deploy law enforcement in a “predictable, progressive approach” that would emphasize fines and other punishments. Because demonstrators will see that the “consequences” for those continuing to engage in “illegal protests” are “going to be more and more extensive,” he said, “we are very hopeful” that “people will choose to leave these protests peacefully.”

Switching gears just a bit, he then added, “We are a long way from ever having to call in the military.”

Such a move, he said, would only be a “last resort.”

And, er: “We have to be ready for any eventuality”:

Trudeau’s speech was clearly designed to convey to protesters that he was under heavy pressure to call in the air strike, making the New York Times headline covering all this — “Trudeau Rejects Calls to Use Military to End Protests” — particularly humorous in its disingenuousness.

Now that the “Freedom Convoy” is inspiring similar protests not just in the United States but in France, BelgiumAustraliaNew Zealand, and other places, it’s clear every Western leader from Biden to Emmanuel Macron on down wants Trudeau, rather than any of them, to take the political hit that would ensue from any use-of-force resolution to this crisis. All of these leaders seem equally to be laboring under the delusion that a decisive enough ass-kicking in the Great White North will make this all go away. Until then, there seems to be no plan in any country that doesn’t involve tear gas, truncheons, or getting Facebook to blame troll farms in Bangladesh for stirring up the “discord” …

As for talking to protesters, that’s out of the question. As Politico recently put it, the “conspiratorial mindset” of the demonstrators means “sitting down with them could legitimize their concerns.” Since we can’t under any circumstances have that, the only option left is the military “eventuality.” Or, as former Obama Deputy Homeland Security Secretary and CNN analyst Juliette Kayyem (the same person who went nanny-bonkers over the Southwest Air “Let’s Go Brandon” incident) put it, “Slash the tires, empty gas tanks, arrest the drivers, and move the trucks.”

Any sane person should be able to see where any of these ideas would lead. The problem is, we’re heading into our third decade of Western leaders embracing not thinking ahead as a core national security concept. It’s like these people went to anti-governing school.

Amanda Prestigiacomo:

Canadian protesters defied a court deadline, remaining at the Ambassador Bridge Friday night and into Saturday morning in protest of COVID vaccination mandates within the nation.

“Canadian truckers protesting vaccine mandates remained at the Ambassador Bridge connecting Detroit to Windsor, Ottawa, Canada, early Saturday after both a 7 p.m. court and midnight deadline from Ottawa police where a state of emergency was declared,” Fox News reported. “The ‘Freedom Convoy’ has remained at the bridge for five days, causing shortages of auto parts that have forced General Motors, Ford, Toyota and Honda to close plants or cancel shifts.”

“Do you think I care? Do you think I care about a fine?” one remaining protester reportedly said. “I’m going to pay a fine? No. You think I care about their mandates? No. This needs to end.”

Authorities moved into the area to break up the blockade early Saturday morning, reports said.

“Dozens of police moved in” “to clear the demonstration,” according to Fox News. “Police, wearing yellow safety vests, moved into place around 8:45 a.m. local time, according to CBC News, directing protesters to clear the bridge. CBC reporters also noted that police brought several armored vehicles and that law enforcement had formed a blockade.”

“The Windsor Police & its policing partners have commenced enforcement at and near the Ambassador Bridge,” the department said via social media. “We urge all demonstrators to act lawfully & peacefully. Commuters are still being asked to avoid the areas affected by the demonstrations at this time.” …

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday that he will do “whatever it takes” to crack down on protesters blocking passages along the U.S.-Canada border, The Daily Wire reported.

“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau convened the Incident Response Group on the ongoing illegal blockades taking place across the country that are threatening trade, jobs, the economy, and our communities,” a statement from the PM’s office said. “He was joined by ministers and senior officials who are actively engaged and working closely with provincial and municipal governments, and who are assessing the requirements and deploying all federal resources necessary to help them get the situation under control.”

“The group committed to continue providing federal resources to support enforcement efforts in Ottawa where the occupation has significantly disrupted local residents’ lives, impacting businesses and families with harassment, threats of violence, and vandalism,” Trudeau’s office continued. “They reiterated that the federal government has and will continue to respond to all requests for appropriate support and resources.”

“The Prime Minister and ministers will continue to work closely with all orders of government and local authorities to respond with whatever it takes to help provinces and municipalities end the blockades and bring the situation under control,” the statement closed. “The government’s top priority remains keeping people and communities safe, and defending jobs, trade, and our economy.”

About Trudeau, the Daily Wire reports:

HBO host Bill Maher tore into Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday over remarks that Trudeau has made in recent days about trucker protests that have been taking place in his country.

Maher’s criticism of Trudeau comes after Trudeau has called the truckers that are protesting a “fringe minority” that holds “unacceptable views.” …

“Justin Trudeau, I mean I thought he was kind of a cool guy, then I started to read what he said,” Maher said. “This is a couple of weeks ago, he was, or maybe this is September, but he was talking about people who are not vaccinated. He said they don’t believe in science. They’re often misogynistic, often racist.”

“No, they’re not,” Maher said, “he said, but they take up space. And with that, we have to make a choice in terms of the leader as a country, do we tolerate these people?”

“It’s like, tolerate them?” Maher added. “Now you do sound like Hitler. And recently, he talked about them holding unacceptable views.”

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