Scott Thompson: Trump-style protectionism is alive and well within Canada

Click to play video 'Ontario, Saskatchewan premiers disrupt meeting agenda' Ontario, Saskatchewan premiers disrupt meeting agenda
Canada's premiers are meeting and disagreeing in New Brunswick, at least when it comes to carbon pricing. Ontario Premier Doug Ford is teaming up with Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe to try to kill Ottawa's plan to impose a national carbon tax. Ross Lord reports – Jul 19, 2018

All of the premiers of this great country are in New Brunswick this week to discuss everything from trade to more trade.

At least that was to be the primary focus heading into the meetings.

READ MORE: Canada’s premiers to talk issues around trade at New Brunswick meeting

How interesting that, during this time of tough NAFTA talks and protectionism, we are having the very same discussion within our own country.

And here in Canada, the battle can be just as heated.

Just ask western neighbours Alberta and British Columbia, fighting each other tooth-and-nail over a pipeline we just bought, and they’re from the same party.

Or the New Brunswick guy who was charged for buying his beer in Quebec, and whose case went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, only to have the high court rule in favour of the provinces.

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How can we cry foul when Donald Trump preaches protectionism while it happens daily here within the Canadian economy? Ask your local brewer or winery.

READ MORE: McNaughton recommends ways Canada’s premiers can help in NAFTA talks

In front of cameras, our leaders stand united in their support of Canadian industry against outside manipulation, like The Donald’s — as they should.

But how can you do that and then turn your backs on the same industries wanting to sell within our own country, or around the world?

How do we open our products up to the world when our own businesses are trapped by the same protectionist measures at home?

Add this to the debate on carbon tax, and it may not be as boring or unproductive as past premiers’ conventions, but I doubt it.

Scott Thompson is the host of The Scott Thompson Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML.