Harper is heading to the G8 summit with a message of “There’s no point in reaching an agreement on climate change until all the biggest polluters agree”:
The world has learned (as shown by global reaction to his stance last time around) that this is a very weak argument transparently intended to stall action against climate change. He wouldn’t want to cause any trouble for his oil buddies back in Alberta. How blasphemous would it be if his oil lobbyists had to spend perhaps a few percent of their profits to clean up the mess they make?
Further, he, and most other fervent climate change action blockers, are missing the obvious point that the best way to elicit change is to lead by example. This is normally considered a desirable trait, yet severely lacking in seemingly most areas of modern conservative policy.
I’m also a bit baffled by the political reasoning for this position. This positions most powerful side-effect, I believe, is to energize everyone who cares about this issue to work as hard as possible to get rid of him. There isn’t any new climate change agreement on the horizon yet, unfortunately, so I’m not sure why he doesn’t just stay quiet and save his torpedoes for later.