When I talk of Hypocrisy I think mostly of the opponents to oil, those who are always speak out against the oil industry and in particular about Canadian “dirty oil” from the tar sands area of Alberta and Saskatchewan. I have many friends, family and others I know who are always posting on Facebook and any other social media, even in person in conversation, about the evils of oil and oil from the tar sands in particular. A lot of people all over are up in arms about it, protesting about the transport of oil by pipeline or by rail, especially after recent pipeline spills and rail accidents involving crude oil, some from Alberta, some not from Alberta. Truth be told I was not a fan of big oil either, but due to my own economic circumstances I took a job in Fort McMurray two years ago and service office equipment at many of the sites in and around this town. Many of those companies are directly or indirectly involved in the production of oil in this area, but almost all of them are influenced by what happens to the oil and gas industry in Alberta.
I feel like a hypocrite myself sometimes, because I agree in a lot of ways with what opponents of the big oil and gas companies say, although I must preface that by saying I do not support violent opposition, including terrorism, against big oil in Canada. Of course, all of the companies involved in Canadian oil, by and large, are not Canadian at all, but they are all making money from our oil, that is for sure. The sad thing is that the money that can be made working up in Fort McMurray are just so much better than most other areas of Canada that it draws in even those people who are not big supporters of the oil industry. I struggled for years in Victoria, British Columbia, to make a decent living, but was faced with the very real possibility of losing my house there if I had not made this move. Now having lived here for 2 years I am able to keep up with the mortgage payments on my house in Victoria, plus a very expensive rental in Fort McMurray, make renovations to my house in Victoria that I had previously been unable to afford, plus keep up with the rest of my monthly bills and am actually saving money on top of that. Living in Victoria is not that much cheaper than living in Fort McMurray, but the wages average not even half of those in this region and sadly the same can be said of many other areas of the country, if you can find decent work at all.
The hypocrisy of the opponents to big oil is that most of those opposed still drive cars, or other motorized vehicles fueled by oil or gas and that is not all. Look at what is built by oil fuelled industry, look at the products that use oil in their manufacture and you will see most people in the modernized countries use oil and gas in many aspects of their lives and may not even realize it. If that oil is not coming from Canada then it is coming from other oil producing nations, but regardless it is still oil and gas, no matter where it is coming from. Until the entire world develops alternatives to oil and implements those alternatives in a massive way to reduce and eliminate our need for fossil fuels, we are all slaves to this monster we have produced. Does that mean that we should do nothing? Of course not, but just blindly opposing the mining of oil from the tar sands does not change the fact that as long as there is money to be made from oil the tar sands will continue to be mined, until there is no oil left or there is no more demand for oil. I challenge all those opposed to oil to give up the gas guzzling cars they own, the toys and even household appliance, such as lawn mowers, ATVs, motorcycles, everything that uses gas. Then pull off the shingles from your house, which use oil in their production, and replace that with say ceramic or metal roofing. How about that tar paper used to insulate your house? The roads we all drive on? The list of products that use oil or have oil as part of the ingredients is staggering, just do some research and find out for yourself! Until then how about becoming part of the solution, start adding solar panels to your house to reduce the use of electricity, walk to work, or ride a bike, (oh wait, what are your bike tires made of?), use public transit, but only ride the electric bus, right? Me, I am planning on doing some things in that direction as well, just as soon as I can.