Trudeau and the ‘great reset’


The internet provides no shortage of conspiracy theories, which makes for a convenient deflection when someone asks about something entirely real that you don’t want to talk about.

Enter Justin Trudeau and the so-called ‘great reset.’  Trudeau dismissed any concerns about such a concept as “disinformation” and “conspiracy theories” at a press conference last week, while accusing Conservative members of parliament of stoking them.

It was reminiscent of when Health Minister Patty Hajdu accused a reporter of “feeding conspiracy theories” for daring to ask whether China’s COVID-19 numbers could be trusted (even though China itself revised its figures numerous times).

The Great Reset is one idea from world leaders to use the economic carnage of the coronavirus pandemic as a blank slate to rebuild economies in ways they want them, through means that might not be as feasible without the collapse.

While it no doubt conjures up the image of a shadowy cabal of global elites huddled over a table in Davos, it’s no conspiracy.  It’s a plan literally listed on the website for the World Economic Forum – the summit that takes place each year in Davos.

“As we enter a unique window of opportunity to shape the recovery, this initiative will offer insights to help inform all those determining the future state of global relations, the direction of national economies, the priorities of societies, the nature of business models and the management of a global commons,” the website says.  “Drawing from the vision and vast expertise of the leaders engaged across the Forum’s communities, the Great Reset initiative has a set of dimensions to build a new social contract that honours the dignity of every human being.”

The influence of global groups tends to be vastly overstated by bona fide conspiracy theorists, so there’s an argument that this is just flowery and toothless language that doesn’t really achieve much.  But its effectiveness is not the issue so much as its intent is.  There are leaders who want to adopt the old Rahm Emanuel wisdom of never letting a crisis go to waste.

Trudeau is one of them.

A video from Trudeau’s appearance at a September United Nations forum started recirculating this week, in which Trudeau plugs all the buzzwords that make UN delegates salivate and conspiracy theorists fume.

“This pandemic has provided an opportunity for a reset,” he said.  “This is our chance to accelerate our pre-pandemic efforts to reimagine economic systems that actually address global challenges like extreme poverty, inequality and climate change.  Building back better means getting support to the most vulnerable while maintaining our momentum on reaching the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.”

Trudeau spent millions of dollars and a great deal of political capital in his failed attempt to secure a United Nations Security Council seat for Canada, so his deference to the UN and other global institutions shouldn’t be all that surprising.

Far from being a conspiracy theory, this is all self-evident in Trudeau’s own words and actions.  The global elites’ utopian vision for national economies – zero carbon emissions, open borders, global governing institutions – are clearly articulated.  The Great Reset is based on the premise that it’s easier to build something from scratch than push it along incrementally, as has been the approach to date.

With economic catastrophe driven by lockdowns unfolding across developed nations, now is not the time for global experiments led by people who themselves have remained unaffected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

There were a great many news stories and pseudo-academic analyses earlier on in the pandemic positing how great locking down everyone was going to be for climate change.  After all, if no one has a job to go to, they don’t need to drive anywhere.  And if no one is allowed to travel, people don’t need to be on planes.  But this giddiness comes at a tremendous cost that we still can’t quite calculate – mental illness, suicide, drug use, domestic violence, crime, and so on.

The resetters are so focused on their ideal world that they aren’t paying attention to the real world and its immediate consequences.  Wanting them to pay attention is hardly a conspiracy theory.  The real conspiracy is in why more of them are not.

Photo Credit: CBC News

More from Andrew Lawton.     @andrewlawton

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