I’ve long been a fan of Larry Correia, and not just his novels; he writes very engaging essays on subjects that interest me, like national policy in a free (heh) republic, publishing, firearms, and more.
His website (monsterhunternation.com) is also home to his famous “fisking” essays, where he breaks down bad journalistic takes and explains why they are both bad and stupid.
Today I’m going to try on Larry’s large shoes and do the same thing. Why? Because Robin Sears, a bad journalist in Toronto, has a SHOCKINGLY stupid take on trucking, revealing his utter ignorance of just about anything infrastructure-related. So. Yeah.
I’ve copied and pasted it below so you don’t have to give him a click. His original words are in italics, while my commentary is in bold. As you’re reading this, remember that I am a trucker, and Robin is not. Away!
Many Canadian cities have long had problems managing semi-trailer truck traffic. Now that we have seen that they can be used as weapons, it’s time we rethink how to live with them.
Sure, trucks can be used as weapons, in the same sense that literally anything can be used as a weapon. The ethanol-powered hybrid that Robin parks under his $3k/month studio apartment can block a road or kill a person too, yet we allow him to have one.
In Toronto, more than half the trucks passing through the city on the DVP, the Gardiner and the 401 have departure points and destinations hundreds of kilometres away. They stop only for gas.
No, they stop for diesel. It’s way worse for the environment, lol.
That said, any town with a truck stop in it is raking in a TON of money on fuel, food, and amenities. Not just with taxes, either. It’s money that wouldn’t be coming into those areas if the truck stops disappeared.
In Ottawa, the city’s website improbably lists Wellington Street as a “truck route!”
My trucking experience in Canada is limited to the western provinces, so I can’t comment on Wellington Street. Maybe it’s a tight or narrow road. Guess what though? Plenty of small towns (you know, the racist ones that grow your food or generate your electricity) have their main thoroughfares listed as “truck routes.”
Those are probably the only roads fortified sufficiently to handle the weight of a truck and its load. Those roads cost money. Building them is a matter of balanced limitations. But you’ve never thought of that, Robin. You’re too busy having Big Thoughts, that solve Big Problems.
Worse, there is no way for trucks travelling from Quebec on their way west not to jam the downtown core, even when they are not protesting. Why do we permit this?
It’s not you, it’s the physics. Is there somewhere else they can go? They don’t want to drive through municipal congestion any more than you do, especially if they’re paid by the mile. Let’s see what your ideas are for alternate routes.
Truckers could be required to take the 407 across Toronto, connecting to the four-lane highways on each end.
Oh look, that’s a toll road. I don’t have as much experience with those either, but I do recall crossing Pittsburgh in a truck once. They toll you based on weight, length, and axle count. It cost me $200. For one day.
Meanwhile the 401 is not a toll road. You want the cost of your goods to keep rising? By all means, raise the cost of logistics, buddy.
In the nation’s capital, a tunnel under the Ottawa River has been debated for years, but strenuously opposed by the city’s lame duck mayor, Jim Watson.
This wouldn’t be the same mayor that just spent two weeks harassing peaceful truckers and beating them up in front of children, would it? Whoops. That aside, if such an infrastructure project has been “debated for years,” then we oughtta be able to see some budget proposals.
A tunnel would funnel truck traffic from the Quebec autoroutes directly onto Ontario’s highway system.
What’s the price tag for DIGGING A TUNNEL UNDER A RIVER and then BUILDING A HIGHWAY LARGE ENOUGH FOR TRUCKS to use it? Sounds super easy and cheap, by all means let’s do it!
Queen’s Park and Wellington Street present different problems. Large semis pass hospital row, circle the Legislature, then pass through miles of residential neighbourhoods on their way north.
That’s not how you spell ‘neighborhood’, ya dork.
In recent weeks, we have seen up close the security risks this could present. Ottawa is even more vulnerable, as the truck fleets pass within metres of the prime minister’s office, Parliament and the Supreme Court. A single truck bomb could destroy any one of these government pillars.
And yet nothing even remotely close to this sort of thing happened during the blockade. Your Prime Minister wasn’t in any danger because he ran away like a coward, claiming he had the WuFlu. However he *did* send in a white guy on a horse to trample an Indian woman–can I get your 300-word thinkpiece on Horse Control, Robin?
However, let us not go down the 9/11 road of increasingly irritating and invasive security measures in dealing with these new realities.
LMAOOOOO despite you pulling scenarios out of your backside LITERALLY ONE PARAGRAPH AGO, designed to scare people into demanding these exact measures??!!
Toronto’s risks could be eased immediately by shifting trucks off University Avenue. Ottawa’s short-term solution could be to permit truck traffic only at night on main streets — and never on Wellington.
Robin’s 9a-5p mindset is leaking all over the page here. He doesn’t understand that truckers live in a 24-hour world, and yet are bound by very strict Hours Of Service regulations. In the United States, these HOS regs have been electronically mandated since 2018. (Used to be that you could keep a paper logbook.) Canada’s mandate came down last summer, so they’re required to have a computer in the truck that tracks the driver’s hours.
If you’re an over-the-road driver, you are required to be off duty for a certain amount of time between shifts. (In the USA, it’s 10 hours.) Then you can only work for 14 hours, during which you can only drive for 11. There are some exceptions but this is the general rule.
And you have to base your start/stop times on when your consignee will receive your shipments. When I worked in long-haul, some consignees only had a narrow receiving window between 1AM and 5AM (looking at you IKEA, you bastards.) The sleep deprivation and abrupt schedule changes screw you up for DAYS.
And his solution to his own bedwetting over the Big Scawy Twuckers is to make them ALL run at night, through the busiest trucking hub in Eastern Canada. He’s not targeting truckers here, he’s targeting everyone who orders supplies from truckers, which is LITERALLY EVERYONE AND EVERYTHING.
Longer-term solutions to future threats to the Parliamentary precinct do not require checkpoints, concrete barriers or “red zones.”
They just require insanely high expenses, rising cost of goods, and arbitrary measures that will not at all stop a Big Scawy Twuck from doing something Big And Scawy if the driver’s determined to do it.
Simply make Wellington a pedestrian mall, and push underground any bus or LRT infrastructure connecting Ottawa and Gatineau.
Buried traffic barriers on each end could be triggered to rise instantly, blocking any renegade attack.
“Renegade attack.” Note this kind of language. Expect it to continue and escalate. They’ll keep waging a press war against any industry that pushes back on draconian government overreach, which triggered the Trucker Protests in the first place.
Since the murder of the young soldier, Cpl. Nathan Cirillo, these devices have ringed the Parliament buildings, blocking unauthorized vehicles.
Sorry to send you to Wikipedia, but here’s the short version: Nathan Cirillo was a 24 year-old Canadian reservist who was shot by a masked gunman later identified as an Islamic terrorist. Definitely an apt parallel for a bunch of truckers who parked on a few roads to protest tyranny.
As the pandemic eases, we will also need to take steps to encourage citizens to return to public transit: health and safety measures — clean, sanitized buses; better comfort and convenience measures — along with reliable route times, mobile phone readers for fares, and security measures in case of attack.
Oof. OOOOOF. There’s a lot to digest here.
“Return to public transit.” Clean and sanitized buses? Pipe dream. The second they pick up their first round of passengers, boom, they all become bio-bombs. Unless you expect us to forget everything we’ve had screamed at us for the last 24 months regarding masks and gloves and distancing and all that crap.
“Along with reliable route times.” I’d say you should talk to the Germans about how to make that happen, but I’m afraid you’ll take too many bad German ideas about governance instead of their infrastructure ideas.
“Mobile phone readers for fares.” Wow, why do you hate poor people? Joking aside, why in the hell would anyone trust a digital-based fare system after what they JUST SAW THE GOVERNMENT DO to truckers’ bank accounts? Or anyone who donated to the truckers’ bank accounts? “Pwease give us moar powaw ovah yoo.”
“Security measures in case of attack.” Perfectly bland and meaningless words that sound nice but offer nothing realistic. “dO bEtTeR.” This comes just sentences after he says “Now hang on, let’s not go all post-9/11 here…”
We need to become smarter
hahahahaha yeah no s**t
about integrating new public transportation infrastructure, so that systems seamlessly interconnect and environmental, safety and security needs are all part of the same solutions.
Utopian word salad. Robin, south of the border we’ve got an idiot in Congress who talks this way. She’s from New York. When challenged on the practicality of her ideas, she defended herself by saying it wasn’t her job to figure out the solutions, it was just her job to demand them. That’s you, buddy. You’re doing it right now.
The convoys may return.
The haters, spitters and shouters may too.
But enough about Parliament.
But to put up permanent steel fences and concrete barriers in places where pedestrians and tourists should be able to roam freely would be to give them a victory.
Them. Victory. Us versus them, battle, war. Language, language, language. This is what I mean when I talk about the importance of the bard.
We already knew we need to build back better from the pandemic — in health care, assisted living, schools, building ventilation and housing.
Smash those buzzwords, Robin! And don’t bring up the skyrocketing price of gas, whatever you do! Steer the reader back to your ever-important mission of pimping fascism!
We knew we need to reduce our carbon footprint.
So stop buying things, driving places, and using electricity.
Now we know that we need to add a new security lens to many projects as well.
“We knew.” “We need.” Us and them. Here’s what WE have to do. Look at me, I’m Robin, follow me, I know de way.
But let us not slide into a U.S.-style mass police presence in schools, malls and subways, nor the body search and often rude interrogation that is the norm at airports around the world.
Big Scawy Pwobwem, but don’t solve it by doing anything bad! Just…solve it! By smartness! Rainbows and unicorn farts! You’ve gotta do BETTER!
By using technology, careful consultation with the citizens affected
THE TRUCKERS LITERALLY TOLD YOU FOR TWO WEEKS THAT ALL THE GOVERNMENT HAD TO DO WAS DROP THE MANDATES, AND YOU WANTED THEM THROWN IN JAIL FOR IT.
we can adapt to this new reality and feel greener, cleaner and safer.
WE US WE US WE US, CLEAN AND SAFE AND GREEN AND CLEAN AND SAFE AND…
This has been a terrible two years for the world, and an especially terrible month for Canadians in half a dozen cities. We need to learn the lessons of both the pandemic and the protests.
You are adamantly committed not to do just that. You don’t want a solution; you want problems in perpetuity. Problems that can only be “solved” by more government overreach, more public money, and most important, MORE PROBLEMS.
That way brainlets like the writers for the Toronto Star can keep their Highly Essential Jobs as overpaid complainers, telling all us plebs on the ground that if we just Smart And Better our way through life, everything will be Safe And Stuff.
As spring arrives and we are freed from these unpleasant days, let us make choices that build optimism about Canada’s future — ones that increase confidence we are raising families in places we know are still safe.
SAFE SAFE SAFE SAFE SAFE.
This isn’t a serious proposal of any kind at all. This isn’t even a poorly written op-ed; this is programming for social media addicts who live their lives governed by absolute fear at every level. A lot of people are going to fall for it.
But you don’t have to. Learn to recognize this garbage every time it rears its head. No details, nothing practical, riddled with contradictions, and saturated with feel-good language. This is the Big Mac of journalism: nothing in it will keep you alive, and if you eat it too often, it will kill you to death from the inside out.
Share with your friends.
Graham Bradley is a husband, father, and truck driver. He’s done long haul, cranes, HazMat tankers, and food services over the last decade. He’s also an author-illustrator of several novels and novellas. Graham retired from obstacle course mud-running in 2018, but still moves 75,000 pounds of groceries by hand every week.