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Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-20-2011, 07:51 PM
At the time of writing this, it is not by any means certain that there will be Canadian election any time soon. So maybe I'll be wrong - it won't be the first time, and I'm sure it won't be the last time that I make a public fool of myself on the message board.

My guess is that between the budget and the non-confidence motion, we will see the government fall by the end of the week. However much Prime Minister Harper claims that Canadians don't want an election, the recent attack ads, and the new Conservative Party attack website are doing nothing to calm the situation.

At present, it rests with Jack Layton and the NDP, though that too may change.

So, I propose a respectful exchange of opinions as the events unfold - what do my fellow Canadopers think of the current situation?

alice_in_wonderland
03-20-2011, 07:54 PM
I've already been getting polling phone calls so I think an election is pretty well on it's way.

Personally, I think the opposition parties are stupid to force the issue now. I would be surprised if an election resulted in a government much different than the one we have now.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-20-2011, 08:04 PM
I don't know; I'm always surprised to see the Conservative Party numbers so high. I admit to being strongly biased against them, but between the 'Harper Government', the Bev Oda scandal, the Bruce Carson affair, the contempt of Parliament, something's got to come back to haunt them.

Ibanez
03-20-2011, 08:58 PM
If an election was called tomorrow the result would be a Conservative minority.

These scandals are nothing really compared to bags of cash changing hands in Québec. It'll take something like that for people to take notice. I don't mean to trivialize what's going on but I think a lot of people have become so desensitized to the never ending demand from opposition parties for peoples heads no matter how large or small the matter. It's turning into the cry wolf syndrome.

The way I see it to date Harper is the one I trust the most out of all of them, well actually there's only one other choice realistically and I definitely don't trust him.

He's just visiting after all. /sarcasm

The Flying Dutchman
03-20-2011, 09:53 PM
There's no way the NDP want an election. They have lost considerable ground in the polls. The big question is if there is anything in the budget that the NDP simply can't accept.

If there is a election, I'll go on the record predicting a Conservative majority and another leadership convention for the Liberals.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-21-2011, 10:13 AM
Again, the polls are contradictory - in this article (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/john-ibbitson/harper-has-reason-to-worry-nanos-poll/article1949229/), the Nanos Research poll for CTV and The Globe and Mail shows the Prime Minister's numbers are down.

I think the last two weeks have revealed some scandal that could stick to the Conservatives.

Leaffan
03-21-2011, 12:29 PM
Again, the polls are contradictory - in this article (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/john-ibbitson/harper-has-reason-to-worry-nanos-poll/article1949229/), the Nanos Research poll for CTV and The Globe and Mail shows the Prime Minister's numbers are down.

I think the last two weeks have revealed some scandal that could stick to the Conservatives.

Sure, Harper's numbers are down, but still almost double Jack's and Iggy's. And the party results point to another Conservative minority. That's how I think things will turn out if we go to the polls again; they have my support.

the Lady
03-21-2011, 01:27 PM
Yes, another Conservative minority.
Which makes all the election talk just silly.
And it's not so much that folks love Harper, it's that there isn't anyone better. All the leaders have their foibles, their ridiculous talking points and their "difficult" MP's.

Not enough has changed since the last election for there to be any real change in the result. Sure, the Conservatives have had a lot of little scandals lately (though I am right-leaning I think they should have tossed Oda under the bus. Less so Mr. Kenney) but it's all so bizarre that no one really cares. If they're even listening.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-21-2011, 02:11 PM
The situation has escalated another notch - A Commons committee has passed a report recommending the Conservative government be found in contempt of parliament. Full article here (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/957379--committee-finds-harper-government-in-contempt?bn=1).

And the Conference Board of Canada's Economy Forecast has been released, showing that we are in the middle of the pack, yet down from the height of the recession two years ago. Full article here (http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/hot-topics/econforecast.aspx#anchor2).

Michael Ignatieff has my full support, for the record.

RickJay
03-21-2011, 07:19 PM
None of the minor scandals will stick. They're just not of sufficient importance or emotional impact to swing many votes.

If we have an election we'll spend millions of dollars to return a Parliament that will look pretty much just like this one.

Not that it won't have an impact; it will, thankfully, end Michael Ignatieff's ridiculous political career (good) and will be Jack Layton's last election (probably not good for the NDP.) It'll further entrench the Bloc (very bad.) If he doesn't acheive a majority you'll start to hear rumblings about replacing Stephen Harper, too... they won't dump him soon, but it'll be the beginning of the downslope of his career.

So an election will, at least, speed up the ascension of new leaders by a year. In the case of the Liberals, that could be a huge upgrade.

Gorsnak
03-21-2011, 07:25 PM
I didn't come into this thread for you.

Cat Whisperer
03-21-2011, 08:38 PM
I didn't come into this thread for you.
:D

I don't understand what the Conservative Party was doing chumming around with Bruce Carson; either they're stupid or they actually are as dirty as the Liberals would have us believe they are. I have supported PM Harper since the start, but this isn't looking good. I might have to abstain from voting if it turns out the PCs are Bad; I can't hold my nose hard enough to vote for anyone else.

What I'm really hoping for is for Iggy to lose an election and disappear with a puff of smoke back into academia.

Ike Witt
03-21-2011, 08:41 PM
Is a majority government in Canada possible anymore?

Lord Feldon
03-22-2011, 03:49 PM
Jack Layton just announced that the NDP won't be supporting the budget that was just presented. Assuming nobody flips, the campaign will probably be beginning within a few days.

Mona Lisa Simpson
03-22-2011, 04:05 PM
Oh geez. Im sick to death of result minority elections.
Currently I am politically homeless, my politics scew left, sometimes Liberal, more often NDP but looking at budget highlights I don't think I can vote for parties that want me to pay for an election (again!) so they can be righteously indignant about this, without any real hope of changing the outcome.

I will decide more afterthe CBC mothercorp tells me what to think tonight.

RickJay
03-22-2011, 04:18 PM
If Michael Ignatieff actually fights an election on this budget, his career is probably over.

Now, having said that, as the old saying goes, campaigns do matter. The Conservatives would have lots of time to hopelessly blow it. But if they don't make a horrific gaffe, where are the Liberals going to pick up ten percent? They're starting off on the wrong foot just by forcing an election (while I realize they need the NDP and Bloc to force an election, people will primarily blame the Liberals.)

The contempt of Parliament charge, I just don't think has much traction, and it's going to be buried by the issue of the budget.

There's no reason to hold an election. This is stupid.

Baffle
03-22-2011, 04:24 PM
The Conservatives might not have anything major to really resonate with the electorate, but their support is slowly being chipped away. Death by a thousand cuts. The G20 fiasco, the Internet limitation proposal, the six dozen minor scandals that have kicked up in the past week... each one will alienate some people, and some people will just abstain from voting as a result. Minority government, for sure... but whose? Every party is at the very least a disappointment, if not totally insane. Until the Conservatives start supporting communities and families, the "leftists"* start realizing people need to actually work, and the Greens accept that almost everything they oppose is necessary for the continued functioning of our society, there's really nobody left to vote for.

* I actually can't figure out what the difference between the NDP and the Liberals are these days; the Liberals have done such a poor job of branding themselves and advertising what it is they actually support, that I have no idea what they stand for or what they intend to accomplish. Hopefully the election campaign will make that clear. Hopefully they actually know.

Cat Whisperer
03-22-2011, 10:34 PM
I believe (and I could be wrong) that the Liberals stand for Michael Ignatieff getting a Prime Ministership to put on his resume before he flits off into the night.

Hypnagogic Jerk
03-23-2011, 01:59 AM
It'll further entrench the Bloc (very bad.)
I'm not sure in which way the Bloc could be entrenched more than it is now. This is a party that's existed for more than 20 years, even though in the beginning it was only supposed to exist for a few years at most. Every time there's an upcoming election, commentators debate whether the Bloc still serves a purpose in Ottawa, but who wins this debate doesn't matter in any way because voters still send large numbers of Bloc MPs to the Commons. Even in English Canada, many people's view of the Bloc has shifted to that of a party whose goals they don't agree with, but that's still an effective opposition, this at least in some part due to Duceppe's leadership. It's seen as part of the Canadian political scene, or even the establishment. Regardless of the result of this election, the Bloc's as entrenched as it's going to get. I suppose that if the Liberals get pummelled into the ground, and the Bloc emerges after the election as the Official Opposition to a Conservative majority government with few MPs from Quebec, this could create a sense that the Bloc is "Quebec's party" with the Conservatives being "English Canada's party." But that's an unlikely result.

This being said, what might be interesting (and you would presumably find really bad) is if other Canadian regions started sending regionalist parties to the Commons. Back in the pre-Bloc era, regional concerns were discussed at the party level, the party then publishing a pan-Canadian platform; this would move Canadian politics to a paradigm where regional concerns would be discussed at the level of inter-party negotiations. I'm not saying it would be better, but it would be interesting, it would remove the Bloc's specificity and establish once and for all that what defines Canadians, even before whether they are liberal or conservative, is which part of the country they identify with. It happened in the past, with the Reform as a Western Canadian party by and for Western Canadians from 1988 until at least 1997, but then the Reformers decided they wanted to get in power and had to morph into a pan-Canadian party.

Muffin
03-23-2011, 06:59 AM
About the only way to defeat the Conservatives would be for the left to unite, rather than spilt the vote. That's not about to happen. Too bad, in my opinion.

Leaffan
03-23-2011, 08:15 AM
About the only way to defeat the Conservatives would be for the left to unite, rather than spilt the vote. That's not about to happen. Too bad, in my opinion.

Unless the left unites after the election to form a coalition.

Muffin
03-23-2011, 08:41 AM
Unless the left unites after the election to form a coalition.Or succeeds in a non-confidence motion, and asks the Governor General to let one of them run the show rather than call an election.

Baffle
03-23-2011, 09:14 AM
Or succeeds in a non-confidence motion, and asks the Governor General to let one of them run the show rather than call an election.

Yes, that worked so well last time.

Too many people don't understand the concept of confidence in the parliamentary system for that to ever be seen as legitimate.

Muffin
03-23-2011, 09:30 AM
Yeh, today I couldn't even remember the name of the Liberal leader who tried it in 2008.

On a similar vein, I wonder if Harper has learned his lesson about proroguing Parliament, for if he pulls that stunt again in the face of a non-confidence motion, I expect that it would hurt him in the polls. He'd be better off to push for an election.

Leaffan
03-23-2011, 09:43 AM
Ah yes. Mean old Harper, who prorogued parliament. Yeah, he better not pull that unprecedented stunt again.

Oh wait. I see it's been prorogued 105 times (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/20091231/parliament_prorogued_091231/) in its history.

Never mind.

ETA: Stéphane Dion

Rysto
03-23-2011, 10:13 AM
Kindly spare us those same old talking points, Leaffan. It's disingenuous in the extreme to suggest that there's any comparison.

Muffin
03-23-2011, 11:40 AM
Proroguing is normally used as a break between legislative progammes, meaning that the agenda set out in a session's speech from the Throne has been completed, and it is time for a break before putting forth a new agenda. Harper prorogued to avoid a non-confidence motion that most likely would have led to either his being replaced by Dion, or to a general election. Although legal, that's not cricket, so if he did it again simply to avoid a non-confidence motion, I expect that it would turn more undecided voters away from the Conservatives that it would attract.

Leaffan
03-23-2011, 11:46 AM
Yes, but it's a moot point this time anyway as the government will undoubtedly fall on a budget confidence vote tomorrow.

Anyway, as Le Ministre stated in the OP let's continue with "a respectful exchange of opinions as the events unfold."

Malthus
03-23-2011, 02:24 PM
What annoys me is that, even after years in the wilderness, the Libs simply don't have their act together. They just don't. That bodes badly for this election. The most likely (and possibly best) outcome is another Conservative minority, with Iggy being dumped and the libs, finally, getting their game on. In short, that the next election will be the "real" election.

Worst case? Conservative majority, allowing the Cons to get just as complacent and corrupt as the libs used to be - there are worrying signs already in that direction. It seems part of the natural life cycle of Canadian politics that some party get imbedded into power like a tick on a dog's balls, grow increasingly corrrupt, and then spectacularly implode - to make way for another party to do the same ...

Cat Whisperer
03-23-2011, 06:06 PM
Unless the left unites after the election to form a coalition.
I kind of hope that happens, because I can hardly imagine anything happening in politics that would be more entertaining. :D

I don't think the Conservatives would prorogue again - it's about time for an election now (which it wasn't then).

Nice description, Malthus - I especially like the exploding tick part. :) ETA: Oops, imploding, not exploding. I do like the mind picture of an exploding tick as politician, though.

Malthus
03-23-2011, 06:27 PM
I kind of hope that happens, because I can hardly imagine anything happening in politics that would be more entertaining. :D

I don't think the Conservatives would prorogue again - it's about time for an election now (which it wasn't then).

Nice description, Malthus - I especially like the exploding tick part. :) ETA: Oops, imploding, not exploding. I do like the mind picture of an exploding tick as politician, though.


Heh, "exploding" is the better word choice there, anyway. I'd edit my post to adopt it, if I could. :D

RickJay
03-23-2011, 07:23 PM
Heh, "exploding" is the better word choice there, anyway. I'd edit my post to adopt it, if I could. :D
"Imploding," ironically, works best to describe what the Liberals have done in opposition.

It is difficult to imagine that they could have done worse than Stephane Dion in choosing a leader, but they did. While I admit I've alwys liked Stephane Dion, so I'm a bit biased, Ignatieff is just a terrible choice for party leader. I'm talking Stockwell Day bad.

That said, I think the Liberals need to fix their party before they can appoint a capable leader. The fact that people can even talk about the "left uniting" suggests that the Liberal Party no longer serves a purpose. If they should simply unite with the NDP, why should they even exist? The "unite the right" movement of a few years ago was a reflection of the fact that the right wing actually had splintered into two parties, both largely regional - and even then, it really wasn't a union as much as it was the unconditional surrender of the PC party.

But the Liberals and NDP are not the product of the schism of a previous party, and the Liberals are historically a moderate, not left-wing, party. If in fact we've reached the point that they should consider merger, then the Liberal Party is, like the PC party, a zombie party. They might as well just fold up. I don't think they're actually there at all, but logically, if they were at merger, that would be where they would be; a nothing party.

So if it fact the other parties united to form a coalition, as Muffin suggests, what you have is a "party" that exists for the sole reason of winning the election so the Conservatives don't. What would such a party do, exactly? What's their platform? That Stephen Harper shouldn't be PM? Seriously? He's not very warm and fuzzy but he's not Pol Pot, so on Day 2 of the Ignatieff Era, what does he do? Who sets the agenda; the left wing party, the party with no clear direction, or the party that wants to wreck the country? I mean, politics is a pretty cynical game, but actually standing up and saying "We're uniting for absolutely no reason other than to make it practically impossible for us to lose" is way too cynical even for me. I'd probably vote against that just on principle.

Malthus
03-23-2011, 07:30 PM
"Imploding," ironically, works best to describe what the Liberals have done in opposition.

It is difficult to imagine that they could have done worse than Stephane Dion in choosing a leader, but they did. While I admit I've alwys liked Stephane Dion, so I'm a bit biased, Ignatieff is just a terrible choice for party leader. I'm talking Stockwell Day bad.

That said, I think the Liberals need to fix their party before they can appoint a capable leader. The fact that people can even talk about the "left uniting" suggests that the Liberal Party no longer serves a purpose. If they should simply unite with the NDP, why should they even exist? The "unite the right" movement of a few years ago was a reflection of the fact that the right wing actually had splintered into two parties, both largely regional - and even then, it really wasn't a union as much as it was the unconditional surrender of the PC party.

But the Liberals and NDP are not the product of the schism of a previous party, and the Liberals are historically a moderate, not left-wing, party. If in fact we've reached the point that they should consider merger, then the Liberal Party is, like the PC party, a zombie party. They might as well just fold up. I don't think they're actually there at all, but logically, if they were at merger, that would be where they would be; a nothing party.

So if it fact the other parties united to form a coalition, as Muffin suggests, what you have is a "party" that exists for the sole reason of winning the election so the Conservatives don't. What would such a party do, exactly? What's their platform? That Stephen Harper shouldn't be PM? Seriously? He's not very warm and fuzzy but he's not Pol Pot, so on Day 2 of the Ignatieff Era, what does he do? Who sets the agenda; the left wing party, the party with no clear direction, or the party that wants to wreck the country? I mean, politics is a pretty cynical game, but actually standing up and saying "We're uniting for absolutely no reason other than to make it practically impossible for us to lose" is way too cynical even for me. I'd probably vote against that just on principle.

My question is whether, should the Libs lose, they will (finally) dump Iggy and get their game on; have they been in the wilderness long enough?

I'm hoping so.

The Flying Dutchman
03-23-2011, 08:53 PM
Worst case? Conservative majority, allowing the Cons to get just as complacent and corrupt as the libs used to be - there are worrying signs already in that direction. It seems part of the natural life cycle of Canadian politics that some party get imbedded into power like a tick on a dog's balls, grow increasingly corrrupt, and then spectacularly implode - to make way for another party to do the same ...

Worst case ? To me either a Liberal or if not a Conservative majority would be the best case. You don't get major innovative programs or policy shifts from minority governments. Just a lot of half assed measures to stay in power.

As for corruption,it appears to me that it doesn't matter whether the government has a majority or not given the recent ruling of contempt for a minority government.

orcenio
03-24-2011, 07:29 AM
Tories lose a few seats
Libs wins a few seats
Bloc wins a few seats
NDP lose a few seats

In the end the minority government will hold power and there will be no Lib-Bloc-NDP merger. All leaders will keep their job except Layton who will be replaced due to poor performance and ill health. Duceppe will probably retire from the Bloc to go on as PQ leader and become premier of Quebec.

Malthus
03-24-2011, 09:01 AM
Worst case ? To me either a Liberal or if not a Conservative majority would be the best case. You don't get major innovative programs or policy shifts from minority governments. Just a lot of half assed measures to stay in power.

As for corruption,it appears to me that it doesn't matter whether the government has a majority or not given the recent ruling of contempt for a minority government.

What I'm saying is that, bad as things are now (and in historical terms, they really are not bad), things could get a hell of a lot worse with a long-lasting majority government.

What I'd like to see is a Liberal party that is less anemic. Having two parties competing with each other, with some others jabbing at them, makes for a healthier democracy, in my view. Right now, I don't think the Libs are all that healthy.

Ibanez
03-24-2011, 07:59 PM
Is a majority government in Canada possible anymore?

As long as the Bloc exists forget it.

There's a new type of voter in Québec where some are against an independent Québec but believe in getting the most they can for Québec and themselves so they have no problem voting in the Bloc. Every election to come they will be gaining seats not losing them.

If you ever have the chance to have a conversation with any of these individuals don't ever call the Bloc separatists because it really upsets them. Last time I checked though Gilles is still advocating for an indepent Québec.

Having a party that represents one province or a group of people is a really bad idea.

Hypnagogic Jerk
03-25-2011, 10:44 AM
There's a new type of voter in Québec where some are against an independent Québec but believe in getting the most they can for Québec and themselves so they have no problem voting in the Bloc. Every election to come they will be gaining seats not losing them.

If you ever have the chance to have a conversation with any of these individuals don't ever call the Bloc separatists because it really upsets them. Last time I checked though Gilles is still advocating for an indepent Québec.
If people in Quebec vote for the Bloc, it's because their experience with the other parties has shown that they do not act for their interests. I don't know if you'd agree with this or not, but that's why they do it. And when it seems that people in the rest of Canada view anything that's bad for Quebec as good for them and for the country, it's hard to blame them.

And while Duceppe is in favour of Quebec independence, it's not with the Bloc that he's going to accomplish this. The Bloc works like a federal party like any other.

newcomer
03-25-2011, 10:55 AM
Let the elections begin...

First of all, I am surprised that Harper’s numbers are so high. The guy just does not strike me as trustworthy or that he knows what he’s doing – I mean he is very skilled politicians in the game of politics but no substantial difference from the rest of the pack.

Secondly, I already made a bet with a friend that I will contribute to dethroning only one Conservative federal MP in Peel Region so I have a financial motivation. However, listening to some of the Conservative ministers makes me somewhat ideologically motivated. Just the other day Peter Kent was on AM640 describing Chrétien’s years as "dark times in Canadian history" and overall tone of his monologue was extremely impolite and flat out disgusting. And, he’s a freaking Cabinet Minister.

So, yeah, Mr. Conservative MP in Peel Region kiss your chair goodbye :D

RickJay
03-25-2011, 11:39 AM
As long as the Bloc exists forget it.
Yeah, we've never had a majority government with the Bloc around.

No wait, we have. Three times.

orcenio
03-25-2011, 11:59 AM
Let the elections begin...

First of all, I am surprised that Harper’s numbers are so high. The guy just does not strike me as trustworthy or that he knows what he’s doing – I mean he is very skilled politicians in the game of politics but no substantial difference from the rest of the pack.Think about it this way, why should middle-road Canadians "turn against" the Conservatives and give power back to the Libs? The Libs ruled for ~12 years (ten with an absolute majority); why shouldn't the Tories be given a fair amount of time too?

Also, in concern about leadership. I think Ignatieff had parachuted into his position/country unlike Harper who seems to have worked very hard/long to be where he is today (the PM of Canada). However, those ads about Ignatieff (quoting him from 2002/whatever) are just silly; Harper would not look good if he was judged solely by what he said as opposition leader ~8 years ago. Remember when he was itching (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPVOhva_cwI)to jump into Iraq (http://www.google.ca/webhp?hl=en#hl=en&xhr=t&q=stephen+harper+iraq+war&cp=23&pf=p&sclient=psy&site=webhp&source=hp&aq=0&aqi=&aql=&oq=stephen+harper+iraq+war&pbx=1&fp=396b9633746f3d69)?

newcomer
03-25-2011, 12:16 PM
Think about it this way, why should middle-road Canadians "turn against" the Conservatives and give power back to the Libs? The Libs ruled for ~12 years (ten with an absolute majority); why shouldn't the Tories be given a fair amount of time too? I think they need to earn it. I just don’t see them really doing a good job earning it.

And I agree, for "those" Canadians there is no a real issue to think hard before switching their vote. Libs did try couple of things to see if they stick, but they don’t. The mood is against elections but as Jack Layton said the other day – any ruling party will say that it is not time for elections.

Personally, I think, Libs should – as a strategy – allow for Conservatives to obtain a majority and then sit and watch as they crumble as they always do.

RickJay
03-25-2011, 01:17 PM
Personally, I think, Libs should – as a strategy – allow for Conservatives to obtain a majority and then sit and watch as they crumble as they always do.
The Liberal Party definitely has to lose this election for their own good; they're adrift with an awful leader.

However, you can't ask a party to TRY to lose. It's a strategy that can't sell, because you're essentially asking people to give up their own shot. For hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the Liberal Party, losing the 2011 election is the end of their careers. Not just the candidates who will be booted, but party staffers, the candidate's own teams, and the like. The campaign strategists will see their careers take a tumble. There's always some folks who can stick around, but for a lot of them 2011 is the end of the line. I know people who've been working on getting nominated for over a year. Ted Hsu, who will be replacing Peter Milliken as the Liberal candidate in Kingston & the Islands, has put eighteen months of effort into this; if he loses that's probably it for him, and a heartbreak for everyone who worked to get him there. His Conservative opponent, Alicia Gordon, has been toiling for years for this shot. Whomever loses isn't getting another shot.

So you can't ask a party to lose. But at the same time, it might be best for the Liberals to be stomped good.

The NDP, I think, needs to make some gains at Liberal expense, and there is some indication they could snap some seats away from the Liberals.

newcomer
03-25-2011, 02:16 PM
So you can't ask a party to lose. But at the same time, it might be best for the Liberals to be stomped good. I meant it more in a way to do a much needed and thorough clean up in their ranks. Conservatives went through a number of incarnations during Chrétien’s years before they landed what they have now. So, when you clean up the house, so to speak, you put winning an election as a secondary – Chretien was winning, in part, because Cons were just bleak and disorganized.



The NDP, I think, needs to make some gains at Liberal expense, and there is some indication they could snap some seats away from the Liberals. Well, I’d like Libs to come back to that proper Center (social liberals-fiscal conservatives) and take some votes from Cons and some from NDP and come back to their given right - that being the ruling party of Canada.

Won’t happen in a while, though. They have Iggy AND Rae.

Bookkeeper
03-25-2011, 02:50 PM
I don't much like Iggy as a prospective PM (although, unlike the Conservatives, I see having some life experience in furrin parts as a good thing). Harper seems much more effective as PM, but that's not a recommendation since he's being effective in doing things I don't want him to do.

My opinion hardly counts much, though, as my riding is apparently a hereditary McGuinty fiefdom.

kushiel
03-25-2011, 02:50 PM
Well, at least it'll all be over in May. No American election cycles here.

However, I have moved up in the world since the last election. I've moved from Maurice Vellacott's riding to Ralph Goodale's.

Cat Whisperer
03-25-2011, 03:09 PM
<snip>
Well, I’d like Libs to come back to that proper Center (social liberals-fiscal conservatives) and take some votes from Cons and some from NDP and come back to their given right - that being the ruling party of Canada.<snip>I'm trying to figure out what you mean by this - that you're serious, and think the Liberals should always rule Canada as their God-given right, or you're joking. I think I'll just assume you're joking, because that makes a lot more sense. Ha ha, good one. :)

For the record, I think PM Harper and one of his best ministers, Flaherty, have done some good things in some very difficult times. (I think my sister and brother-in-law are actually in PM Harper's riding.)

Ike Witt
03-25-2011, 04:26 PM
Yeah, we've never had a majority government with the Bloc around.

No wait, we have. Three times.

TBH, I think that Ibanez might be right going forward. I would assume that votes that used to vary between the Conservatives and Liberals in Quebec may now settle with the Bloc.

I feel that we are in for minority governments for a long while. It will have to a person of extreme charisma to win a majority, and nobody running now could be called 'dynamic'.

So, we just had a mayoral election in Toronto, and now we have the Federal election coming in May to go along with the upcoming provincial elections...Voter fatigue anyone?

I am pretty sure I have to vote conservative for the Ontario election. The Liberal energy policy is so stupid as to be farce. And I don't think I could ever bring myself to vote NDP*. As for the federal election, sad to say but I really don't care. Is the Marijuana party still around?



*I would vote for Matt if I lived in his riding tho.

RickJay
03-25-2011, 04:36 PM
I am pretty sure I have to vote conservative for the Ontario election. The Liberal energy policy is so stupid as to be farce.
I'm on board with that but have a horrible suspicion the PC energy policy will be even more imbecilic. The NDP energy policy I assume to be insane.

orcenio
03-25-2011, 05:14 PM
If people in Quebec vote for the Bloc, it's because their experience with the other parties has shown that they do not act for their interests. I don't know if you'd agree with this or not, but that's why they do it. And when it seems that people in the rest of Canada view anything that's bad for Quebec as good for them and for the country, it's hard to blame them.

And while Duceppe is in favour of Quebec independence, it's not with the Bloc that he's going to accomplish this. The Bloc works like a federal party like any other.I disagree with your sentiment that "people in the rest of Canada view anything that's bad for Quebec as good for them and for the country;" however I believe that it can seem that way for a Quebecker. Bottom line though, I still don't think that it is true.

As for your stated reason for the Quebec people's continuation of support for the Bloc... It's complex. The Bloc does stand for the interests of Quebec (this is without question), however given the nature of being a 'Bloc party' for an entire province, they simply cannot represent all of the interests of all Quebeckers all the time. For example.

Remember the 2006 election (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_federal_election,_2006)? The Tories went from having 0 Quebec seats to 10 (8 of which they stole from the Bloc). All it took was the real prospect of having a true blue Conservative government in power and the Bloc immediately lost a large chunk of their conservative base. Harper could have stole the last chunk (and gotten his majority) if he didn't mess up his Quebec chances in the 2008 elections.

Now look at the NDP, if they had a decent chance of... simply being the opposition. Do you think the Bloc would keep their left-wing intact? Maybe, but I have my doubts. Quebeckers do have competing political interests which can't be solved by strictly voting in their closed regional interest.

Spoons
03-25-2011, 05:22 PM
Spam reported.

orcenio
03-25-2011, 05:51 PM
Yes, another Conservative minority.
Which makes all the election talk just silly.
And it's not so much that folks love Harper, it's that there isn't anyone better. All the leaders have their foibles, their ridiculous talking points and their "difficult" MP's.

Not enough has changed since the last election for there to be any real change in the result. Sure, the Conservatives have had a lot of little scandals lately (though I am right-leaning I think they should have tossed Oda under the bus. Less so Mr. Kenney) but it's all so bizarre that no one really cares. If they're even listening.You know, I'll never understand why they stood up for Oda while Helena Guergis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Helena_Guergis) was tossed for doing absolutely nothing. If being married to an idiot was an expellable offense they should have banished Nina Grewal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nina_Grewal) a long time ago. :D

Agnostic Pagan
03-25-2011, 05:57 PM
Na na, hey hey, kiss him goodbye!!!

History in the making - fun to watch sometimes!

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 06:27 PM
Na na, hey hey, kiss him goodbye!!!

History in the making - fun to watch sometimes!

Goodbye to whom?

The Conservative Party with a 43% approval?

The Prime Minister with an 80% approval?

This election will result in either a Conservative majority, which will be fantastic for the country, or it will result in a Conservative minority, after which the Liberals will attempt a coalition of losers. Although legal, I'm not sure how this would play out in public response. Either we blindly accept it or take to the streets. And I can't see anyone in Canada taking to the streets, unless you're part of the left-wing anti-corporation G8 protesting lunacy already.

Fun times.

Muffin
03-25-2011, 06:31 PM
I was listening to a local radio station. Its hourly news had two items, before moving on to sports. The first item was that there is going to be an election, probably in May. The second was that there will be a lot of army worms in a couple of years.

All in all, a slow news day, despite the fall of the government.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 06:44 PM
Good lord, Leaffan. If Stephen Harper shutting down Parliament at his whim doesn't get Canadians taking to the streets, I can assure you that a coalition government certainly wouldn't.

The Flying Dutchman
03-25-2011, 06:49 PM
Spam reported.

What Spam?

orcenio
03-25-2011, 06:49 PM
What Spam?It's gone now.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-25-2011, 07:19 PM
Goodbye to whom?

The Conservative Party with a 43% approval?

The Prime Minister with an 80% approval?

This election will result in either a Conservative majority, which will be fantastic for the country, or it will result in a Conservative minority, after which the Liberals will attempt a coalition of losers. Although legal, I'm not sure how this would play out in public response. Either we blindly accept it or take to the streets. And I can't see anyone in Canada taking to the streets, unless you're part of the left-wing anti-corporation G8 protesting lunacy already.

Fun times.

I don't know where you are getting your figures. Ekos (http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2011/03/25/pol-poll.html) places the Conservative lead at 35.3 %, 7.2% ahead of the Liberals who are at 28.1%.

I have no current numbers for Prime Minister Harper's approval rating. I will believe 80% when I see it in the paper.

Agnostic Pagan
03-25-2011, 07:21 PM
Goodbye to whom?...
Fun times.Regardless of the outcome, I was a bit surprised to see the coverage on C-SPAN, which was a re-broadcast of CBC who is always more pleasant to watch than US media outlets. (One of many things I miss about Seattle.)

And given all the turmoil around the world, particularly in Libya, it was very pleasant to watch a 'regime change' occur with so little drama. As Muffin
stated, it is just another blurb on the radio.

Reading and watching some of the commentary, I can believe that Harper allowed the election to be called so that he could aim for a majority government. Considering the worst of yours are nowhere near the worst of ours, it would likewise not be the worst of outcomes. (I'll gladly trade you Harper for Walker - any takers?)

Canada also makes a good case study for what the future of US politics may look like in another generation. An quasi-nationalist bloc (Hispanics in our case, perhaps) and three major parties competing for the rest of the votes. Canada is also a refreshing look at how government can be partisan, but not at each others throats.

Of course, my hope is to see the NDP take some votes from the Liberals and become the primary opposition or coalition leader. Coalition governments are hardly the worst outcome either.

Mona Lisa Simpson
03-25-2011, 07:44 PM
I was listening to a local radio station. Its hourly news had two items, before moving on to sports. The first item was that there is going to be an election, probably in May. The second was that there will be a lot of army worms in a couple of years.

All in all, a slow news day, despite the fall of the government.

I just about fell off my chair laughing at this one. Ever listened on a day that "the snow is melting" is the top story?

CBC or CDs. No other choice.

But about the election, I am of two minds. Either hide under the covers until May, or I get insanely political, and actually volunteer for a candidate and stuff. I really don't want this election, but since I despise Harper and the American flavour of politics and attack adds that have come around, I won't sit on the fence for long.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:08 PM
Good lord, Leaffan. If Stephen Harper shutting down Parliament at his whim doesn't get Canadians taking to the streets, I can assure you that a coalition government certainly wouldn't.

"Shutting down Parliament at his whim?"

What planet have you been on?

He prorogued parliament in order to stave off an unprecedented coalition involving the Bloc separatist party. A coalition that stated he wasn't spending enough to address the global financial crisis. And then when he resumed parliament with a new budget (which was supported by the House) he was lambasted for going into deficit spending.

And now we're being subject to another possible coalition: unless the Conservatives get a majority. And it appears they may.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:14 PM
I don't know where you are getting your figures. Ekos (http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2011/03/25/pol-poll.html) places the Conservative lead at 35.3 %, 7.2% ahead of the Liberals who are at 28.1%.

I have no current numbers for Prime Minister Harper's approval rating. I will believe 80% when I see it in the paper.

Here you go. (http://www.ipsos-na.com/news-polls/pressrelease.aspx?id=5174)

Conservatives (43%) Spike into Majority Zone as Grits (24%) Tumble and Trail by Almost 20 Points with Finger on Election Trigger, Pending Election is Conservatives to Lose

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Either way, it still points to a Conservative win.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:23 PM
Or here (http://www.cfra.com/?cat=1&nid=78635):


A poll released by Ipsos Reid shows the Conservatives kick off the campaign with the support of 42 per cent of respondents, compared with 24 per cent for the Liberals and 16 per cent for the NDP.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 08:25 PM
"Shutting down Parliament at his whim?"

What planet have you been on?
The planet where Stephen Harper shut down Parliament twice when it proved inconvenient..

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:26 PM
And more (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/20110320/conservatives-liberals-latest-poll-110320/):


Results from those three questions are compiled for the Leadership Score Index. It has Harper again in the lead -- but down 16 points:

* Stephen Harper, Conservative: 82.8 (-16.1)
* Jack Layton, NDP: 51.4 (+7.8)
* Michael Ignatieff, Liberal: 39.7 (+2.8)
* Gilles Duceppe, Bloc: 21.5 (+3.8)
* Elizabeth May, Green: 11.6 (-1.1)

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-25-2011, 08:28 PM
Decima-Harris (http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/canada/breakingnews/support-near-same-levels-as-last-election-the-canadian-press-harris-decima-poll-118398309.html) has lower numbers than Ipsos, as well.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:28 PM
The planet where Stephen Harper shut down Parliament twice when it proved inconvenient..

He prorogued parliament in order to stave off an unprecedented coalition involving the Bloc separatist party.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:30 PM
Decima-Harris (http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/canada/breakingnews/support-near-same-levels-as-last-election-the-canadian-press-harris-decima-poll-118398309.html) has lower numbers than Ipsos, as well.

Which still points to a Conservative minority.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 08:32 PM
He prorogued parliament in order to stave off an unprecedented coalition involving the Bloc separatist party.
...

And then he did it again, one year later, because he didn't want to answer to the House. (http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2009/12/30/parliament-prorogation-harper.html)

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 08:37 PM
...

And then he did it again, one year later, because he didn't want to answer to the House. (http://www.cbc.ca/canada/toronto/story/2009/12/30/parliament-prorogation-harper.html)
You do realize this is legal and constitutional and performed 105 times in the past right?

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-25-2011, 08:59 PM
Which still points to a Conservative minority.

Yes, at the moment. As we find out more about Afghan detainees (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/960406--afghan-documents-kept-from-public-could-come-out-mp-says), Bruce Carson (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/956714--former-pmo-aide-accused-of-lobbying-had-four-meetings-with-feds) and as the budget catches up (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canadians-dont-share-harpers-zest-for-fighter-jets-debt-reduction-poll-shows/article1950801/), those Conservative numbers may continue to go down. I'm just pointing out that there is an 8 percentage point difference between polls of different sources.

The first proroguation was such an unprecedented move, it took almost a week of meetings with constitutional experts to determine what the proper course of action was. And the way that Conservatives go on about the Bloc, you'd think that the Bloc and Conservative parties have never supported one another, except that they did. Frequently.

The second proroguation was when we took to the streets in the tens of thousands and were ignored completely by the Conservative party.

All this touches on one of my strongest objections to the Conservative Party under the leadership of Prime Minister Stephen Harper - the hypocrisy of promising open transparent government and shutting down the press, the promise of Senate reform which results in stacking the Senate with party hacks and killing legislation approved by the elected house without a word of debate, the parliamentary obstructionism (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/Politics/20070518/tories_parliament_070518/) followed by John Baird crying to the referee that the parliamentary committee was stacked against the Tories, the attack ads with out of context remarks and half-truths worthy of FOX news.... You may not share my sense of outrage at this, but when the man who promised an end to Realpolitik turns to Realpolitik faster than you can say "Animal Farm", I don't understand how it can be ignored, defended or supported.

____

If I may, I'd just like to once again express the hope that we can keep this respectful. Everyone here is an intelligent person with his or her own point of view, and a clear passion for this country. As I slowly come to meet more of the Canadopers in person, I'm made aware that politics is just one aspect of this community and the strange, long distance friendship that it affords. Leaffan and I are a prime example - I doubt that we will ever agree on anything, politically. For all that, he is a good man, his heart is in the right place and I would happily shovel his driveway in a snow storm, buy him a beer and/or clean out his basement when asked.

Now that that 'Barney the Dinosaur' moment is out of the way, back to politics.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 09:01 PM
You do realize this is legal and constitutional and performed 105 times in the past right?
It's a total abuse of the PM's constitutional power. Before the Harper Government® parliamentary sessions operated on a more-or-less fixed schedule. Prorogation was a formality when the scheduled session. But Stephen Harper, who seems to have trouble following his own schedules, has made it into a weapon with which he can muzzle Parliament, and our democracy is much poorer for it.

What you seem to not understand is that the Westminster system of government has a lot more to it than the formal constitutional rules. Under a strict reading of our constitution the Queen is a dictator with extremely broad powers. This isn't reality because of established constitutional convention. Just because something is legal under the Constitution doesn't make it right.

"The Harper Government"® is a registered trademark of the Government of Canada. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 09:13 PM
It's a total abuse of the PM's constitutional power. Before the Harper Government® parliamentary sessions operated on a more-or-less fixed schedule. Prorogation was a formality when the scheduled session. But Stephen Harper, who seems to have trouble following his own schedules, has made it into a weapon with which he can muzzle Parliament, and our democracy is much poorer for it.

What you seem to not understand is that the Westminster system of government has a lot more to it than the formal constitutional rules. Under a strict reading of our constitution the Queen is a dictator with extremely broad powers. This isn't reality because of established constitutional convention. Just because something is legal under the Constitution doesn't make it right.

"The Harper Government"® is a registered trademark of the Government of Canada. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

I respectfully disagree. I believe the minority government was acting in the best interests of the country. There was no other choice. We had just gone through an election, didn't need another one, and sure as hell didn't need a coalition government.

Muffin
03-25-2011, 09:17 PM
I just about fell off my chair laughing at this one. Ever listened on a day that "the snow is melting" is the top story?

CBC or CDs. No other choice.g.Jeff Walters (Hi Jeff!) has been a with the ski patrol for far more years than he has been behind the microphone at the CBC.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 09:18 PM
I respectfully disagree. I believe the minority government was acting in the best interests of the country. There was no other choice. We had just gone through an election, didn't need another one, and sure as hell didn't need a coalition government.
And what's the excuse for proroguing Parliament last year?

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 09:18 PM
Yes, at the moment. As we find out more about Afghan detainees (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/960406--afghan-documents-kept-from-public-could-come-out-mp-says), Bruce Carson (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/956714--former-pmo-aide-accused-of-lobbying-had-four-meetings-with-feds) and as the budget catches up (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canadians-dont-share-harpers-zest-for-fighter-jets-debt-reduction-poll-shows/article1950801/), those Conservative numbers may continue to go down. I'm just pointing out that there is an 8 percentage point difference between polls of different sources.........

I'm sorry, but quoting the Toronto Star as an impartial media source is just silly.

How about this Liberal Senator (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/20110311/senator-lavigne-fraud-110311/)?

A Liberal senator accused of misusing public funds and instructing a Senate staffer to cut down trees at his cottage has been found guilty of fraud and breach of trust.

The charges come more than three years after Raymond Lavigne was officially barred from the Upper House.

Lavigne, a Quebec senator appointed in 2002, was initially suspended from the Red Chamber after being charged with obstruction of justice, fraud and breach of trust

elbows
03-25-2011, 09:22 PM
I say we all change our stripes and vote NDP!

I personally hate Mr Harper and his cronies, but am willing to admit we were lucky to have a fiscal conservative at the helm through a world wide financial crises. That said, I refuse to vote for the dude.

And the Liberals just suck it. They deserve to lose and get shellacked, in my opinion. They keep foisting leaders upon us, one after another, not a leadership skill among them! They are hopelessly lost and disconnected from their constituency.

Now I feel there is little difference between the two quite honestly. They are lying weasels who will say anything to get power. There is no reform in them, they sold their souls long ago.

I think people are woefully tired of a bad choice, election after election.

I'm not sure the NDP would make good government, but hey, they could hardly be worse. And I think what western society needs the most is protection from predatory capitalists. The Libs and Conserv's cannot possibly deliver. And under their watch Canadian's have been served up to be exploited, badly, often, and repeatedly. I think the NDP might be just the thing.

Plus, and I love this so, so much, Jack has been saying we need to lose the Senate. A man after my own heart. They do nothing, it's just a cushy, well paid job for the well connected once set out to pasture. Killing time till they can collect their ginormously generous pensions. It costs something like $360 billion to have a stupid 'do nothing' senate. I say lose them, the sooner the better.

Even if I end up changing my mind, come election day. I am telling everyone that I'm tired of these two bullshit parties and the same stupid bad choice election after election, so I'm voting NPD! The Libs and Conservs can 'suck it!'.

And I'm encouraging everyone I know to participate in the same sport. I say shake it up, it can't get worse. I'd love to see the polls reflect that everyone is so cheesed they are switching their allegiance out of sheer spite.

It's either that or start a movement to demand they go back to counting and reporting the spoiled ballots, like they used to. Then motivate everyone who's pissed about the proroguing of parliament, or the scandals, or just pissed to be having another election for no real change, to destroy their ballots.

Yeah, I'm a little bitter, it's true. I think the average Canadian is too!

Muffin
03-25-2011, 09:25 PM
You do realize this is legal and constitutional and performed 105 times in the past right?And you do realize that this was already covered at post 27 -- namely that Harper misused the procedure by using it to dodge a non-confidence motion, rather than to give Parliament a break between legislative progammes, right?

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 09:30 PM
And what's the excuse for proroguing Parliament last year?

National security by the looks of things.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 09:33 PM
I say we all change our stripes and vote NDP!

I personally hate Mr Harper and his cronies, but am willing to admit we were lucky to have a fiscal conservative at the helm through a world wide financial crises. That said, I refuse to vote for the dude.

And the Liberals just suck it. They deserve to lose and get shellacked, in my opinion. They keep foisting leaders upon us, one after another, not a leadership skill among them! They are hopelessly lost and disconnected from their constituency.

Now I feel there is little difference between the two quite honestly. They are lying weasels who will say anything to get power. There is no reform in them, they sold their souls long ago.

I think people are woefully tired of a bad choice, election after election.

I'm not sure the NDP would make good government, but hey, they could hardly be worse. And I think what western society needs the most is protection from predatory capitalists. The Libs and Conserv's cannot possibly deliver. And under their watch Canadian's have been served up to be exploited, badly, often, and repeatedly. I think the NDP might be just the thing.

Plus, and I love this so, so much, Jack has been saying we need to lose the Senate. A man after my own heart. They do nothing, it's just a cushy, well paid job for the well connected once set out to pasture. Killing time till they can collect their ginormously generous pensions. It costs something like $360 billion to have a stupid 'do nothing' senate. I say lose them, the sooner the better.

Even if I end up changing my mind, come election day. I am telling everyone that I'm tired of these two bullshit parties and the same stupid bad choice election after election, so I'm voting NPD! The Libs and Conservs can 'suck it!'.

And I'm encouraging everyone I know to participate in the same sport. I say shake it up, it can't get worse. I'd love to see the polls reflect that everyone is so cheesed they are switching their allegiance out of sheer spite.

It's either that or start a movement to demand they go back to counting and reporting the spoiled ballots, like they used to. Then motivate everyone who's pissed about the proroguing of parliament, or the scandals, or just pissed to be having another election for no real change, to destroy their ballots.

Yeah, I'm a little bitter, it's true. I think the average Canadian is too!

Yep. We could all pay higher taxes and have more corporations leaving Canada. Good choice.

RickJay
03-25-2011, 09:37 PM
It's a total abuse of the PM's constitutional power. Before the Harper Government® parliamentary sessions operated on a more-or-less fixed schedule. Prorogation was a formality when the scheduled session. But Stephen Harper, who seems to have trouble following his own schedules, has made it into a weapon with which he can muzzle Parliament, and our democracy is much poorer for it.

What you seem to not understand is that the Westminster system of government has a lot more to it than the formal constitutional rules.
Look, both sides are wrong here when it comes to the 2008 proroguation. If I spelled that right.

You are absolutely correct in that while what the Conservatives did was legal, it was equally unprecedented, which in the Canadian tradition is dirty pool.

But it is equally correct to say that while what the opposition parties were proposing was legal and Constitutional, it was also equally unprecedented. Proposing a new government to be led by a newly party-appointed Prime Minister who would sit in power for two years without facing the electorate as a party leader? Never done before. Any other leader appointed midstream has, rightly, gone to face the polls. The coalition was proposing to appoint Michael Ignatieff as Prime Minister and not consult the people of Canada about it for years. Outrageous.

You cannot have it both ways - and for that matter neither can Leaffan. You can't complain that the Conservatives acted in a manner contrary to our Parliamentary traditions while ignoring that in doing so they prevented the Opposition from acting in a way that would ignore our Parliamentary traditions. Similarly, Leaffan, you can't keep saying "well, it was legal" and complain about what the Opposition was planning, since what the Opposition was planning was perfectly legal.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 09:47 PM
I personally hate Mr Harper and his cronies, but am willing to admit we were lucky to have a fiscal conservative at the helm through a world wide financial crises.

A fiscal conservative? We are talking about the man who made a campaign promise that he wouldn't change the tax rules for income trusts, only to be forced to completely reverse the decision within a year because doing nothing would do immense damage to the Canadian economyt? That fiscal conservative? The man who cut the GST against the pleas of every economist in Canada -- a move that is largely responsible for the terrible fiscal position Canada finds itself in today? That fiscal conservative? The man who, upon seeing the devastation the subprime mortgage crisis was wreaking in the US, said "I've got to get me some of that!", and proceeded to commit the Government of Canada to repaying every penny of any 40-year mortgage with absolutely no downpayment that went bad? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailout out Ford and GM? That fiscal conservative? The man who is committed to cutting corporate taxes at a time when Canada faces a deficit around $40 billion, with the progress made in paying off the debt in the late 90s and early 2000s almost completely eliminated? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailing out the auto industry? That fiscal conservative? The man who, by his own rosy projections, expects to be running a deficit until 2015 -- and the independent Parliament Budgetary Officer projects that there will still be a deficit in 2015?

Stephen Harper may be a conservative. But a fiscal conservative? Not a chance.

Rysto
03-25-2011, 10:01 PM
But it is equally correct to say that while what the opposition parties were proposing was legal and Constitutional, it was also equally unprecedented.
There was, in fact, a precedent, albeit an extremely controversial one: King-Byng. As it happens, the government that came out of that collapsed within days, but it has happened before.

And let's not forget that the attempted coalition didn't arise out of a sudden grasp for power. It was motivated by Harper's attempt to bankrupt all opposition. It was the only way that the opposition could stay solvent without forcing an election months after the last one.

Leaffan
03-25-2011, 10:02 PM
A fiscal conservative? We are talking about the man who made a campaign promise that he wouldn't change the tax rules for income trusts, only to be forced to completely reverse the decision within a year because doing nothing would do immense damage to the Canadian economyt? That fiscal conservative? The man who cut the GST against the pleas of every economist in Canada -- a move that is largely responsible for the terrible fiscal position Canada finds itself in today? That fiscal conservative? The man who, upon seeing the devastation the subprime mortgage crisis was wreaking in the US, said "I've got to get me some of that!", and proceeded to commit the Government of Canada to repaying every penny of any 40-year mortgage with absolutely no downpayment that went bad? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailout out Ford and GM? That fiscal conservative? The man who is committed to cutting corporate taxes at a time when Canada faces a deficit around $40 billion, with the progress made in paying off the debt in the late 90s and early 2000s almost completely eliminated? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailing out the auto industry? That fiscal conservative? The man who, by his own rosy projections, expects to be running a deficit until 2015 -- and the independent Parliament Budgetary Officer projects that there will still be a deficit in 2015?

Stephen Harper may be a conservative. But a fiscal conservative? Not a chance.

Rysto. I disagree with everything you have said. Everything.

Income trusts: Had to be changed else every corporation in Canada would have seeked the same tax shelter.

GST reduction: You'd rather have the extra 2% now on gas, electricity, etc?

Bailing out auto industry: Do you have any idea how the supply chain of manufacturing works and how many other suppliers would have gone under? For fucks sake even the NDP and Liberals were calling for a huge stimulus package to help these guys. In fact, that's why parliament was initially prorogued: to get the necessary stimulus money into the budget.

Do you honestly think that you are smarter than the Prime Minister, who holds a masters degree in economics? Do you really think like that? Do you?

Rysto
03-25-2011, 10:37 PM
Income trusts: Had to be changed else every corporation in Canada would have seeked the same tax shelter.
The mistake was not changing the rules. The mistake was in making the promise in the first place without understanding the economic consequences.

GST reduction: You'd rather have the extra 2% now on gas, electricity, etc?
I'm going to have to repay every penny of that 2% someday, with interest. Yes, I'd rather pay the taxes now.

And even if we could have afforded the GST cut, the right thing to do was cut income taxes, not the GST. The GST is much more economically efficient than an income tax. We'd be much better off, economically speaking, with lower income taxes paid for with a higher GST. You'd have to put tax credits in place so that you wouldn't hose the poor, but if implemented correctly it would lead to some real economic benefits(similar reasoning lead to the PST -> HST transition in BC and Ontario).

Bailing out auto industry: Do you have any idea how the supply chain of manufacturing works and how many other suppliers would have gone under? For fucks sake even the NDP and Liberals were calling for a huge stimulus package to help these guys. In fact, that's why parliament was initially prorogued: to get the necessary stimulus money into the budget.
You're conflating the stimulus with the auto bailout. They were two completely different things. Anyway, the stimulus was all just political camouflage for the real reason behind the coalition: Harper's attempt to cut off funding to political parties, which would devastate the opposition's finances while leaving the Conservatives in good shape. The spin on that would have been awful, so the opposition latched onto the lack of stimulus as the ostensible reason for tossing out the Conservatives.

But anyway, the fact that the Liberals supported the auto bailout doesn't change the fact that it was a really shitty policy. Throwing money at terribly run companies is a stupid waste of money. Mark my words, GM and Chrysler will be back for bailouts again some day in the distant future.

And here's the thing for me: the only reason that I would ever vote for the Conservatives is if their economic policies were significantly better than their opponents'. I'll never agree with their social policies. But with the Harper Government I've gotten all of the idiotic social policy that I expect combined with completely braindead economic management. Even if I were to accept your premise that the Liberals' economic policy is just as bad as the Conservatives -- and I don't, although I'm sure the Liberals will work hard to convince me otherwise in the upcoming campaign -- I still wouldn't vote for the Conservatives, because they have to do a better job than the Liberals economically speaking for me to even consider them.

Do you honestly think that you are smarter than the Prime Minister, who holds a masters degree in economics? Do you really think like that? Do you?
I saw a quote once that summed up Stephen Harper's problem beautifully: Stephen Harper the politician trumps Stephen Harper the economist 10 times out of 10. Now, I'd amend that to be 999 times out 1000 -- he did get the Income Trust thing right eventually -- but even so, having an advanced degree in economics really doesn't do you any good if you don't actually base your fiscal policy in sound economics.

Northern Piper
03-25-2011, 11:02 PM
But it is equally correct to say that while what the opposition parties were proposing was legal and Constitutional, it was also equally unprecedented. Proposing a new government to be led by a newly party-appointed Prime Minister who would sit in power for two years without facing the electorate as a party leader? Never done before. Any other leader appointed midstream has, rightly, gone to face the polls.

Except that's not correct. There have been five Prime Ministers who took office during the course of a Parliament and who have not immediately called an election: Abbott, Thompson, Bowell, Meighen and St. Laurent.

Prime Minister Macdonald led the Conservatives in the election on March 5, 1891. He died on June 6, 1891.

He was succeeded by John Abbott (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Abbott), who served until November 24, 1892.

Abbott retired and was succeeded by John Thompson (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Sparrow_David_Thompson), who served as Prime Minister for two years, until his death in December, 1894.

Thompson was succeeded by Mackenzie Bowell (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mackenzie_Bowell), who served as Prime Minister for approximately 18 months, until the spring of 1896.

Bowell was forced out by a party revolt, and succeeded as Prime Minister by Charles Tupper (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Tupper), who was sworn in as Prime Minister after Parliament had finally been dissolved, for the 1896 election.

So, there were three Prime Ministers who served during the term of the Parliament elected in the 1891 election, for the course of 5 years.

Then, there was the example of Prime Minister Meighen. Prime Minister Borden won the war-time election of 1917. Upon Borden's retirement in 1920, Meighen became Prime Minister. He served for about a year and a half before calling an election. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arthur_Meighen#First_term)

And, there was the case of Prime Minister St Laurent. Prime Minister Mackenzie King won the election of 1945. He retired in late 1948, and was succeeded by St Laurent, who did not call an election until late June, 1949.

Now, all of these were cases where the new Prime Minister was of the same party as the outgoing Prime Minister, and also are all fairly old precedents. Perhaps the modern political understanding would not allow similar transfers today. However, it's just not accurate to say that it's unprecedented to have a Prime Minister come in and not immediately call an election.

Also, there is a recent precedent at the provincial level. In 1985, Premier Miller of Ontario called an election. No party had a majority. The Liberals and the NDP (under Peterson and Rae, respectively) announced an agreement for Peterson and the Liberals to form the government. They defeated Miller's government on a non-confidence motion, and Peterson was sworn in as Premier (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Peterson#Premier) without another election being called.

Cat Whisperer
03-26-2011, 12:14 AM
Canadians are against purchasing fighter jets? Are Canadians seriously bought into the idea that the US will gladly protect us with their military? We're a frickin' sovereign nation - we need to have a military budget and equip our troops just like a real country. (This said as a pacifist - and a realist.)

People want the government to address healthcare, education, and childcare, but not debt reduction and deficit spending? How exactly do they think any government is going to pay for any social programmes without money? First you pay your bills, then you start looking at paint colours for the walls. This attitude from Canadians surprises me; I thought we were more pragmatic as a nation than that. I also don't agree that PM Harper has been fiscally irresponsible; I think the budgets Flaherty has brought down have been moderate and realistic for the upheaval that was going on in the world.

As for cutting off funding for political parties and bankrupting the opposition, the Conservatives are liquid due to fundraising; I see no reason why all the other political parties can't do what the Conservatives have done and quit expecting taxpayer money to keep them solvent.

So, here's what I see - Liberals/NDP/Bloc vote down this budget, we go to the polls, we pay $300 million, we get another Conservative minority government, and PM Harper et al are free to bring back a different budget that is far less favourable to Liberal, NDP, and Bloc interests because they KNOW they can't trigger another election right away without incurring the wrath of the Canadian voting public. Badly played, Left wing. You're handing the Conservatives a carte blanche if they win (and it would surprise the hell out of me if they lose), plus costing all of us hundreds of millions of dollars to stroke Iggy's ego.

Bookkeeper
03-26-2011, 01:03 AM
Canadians are against purchasing fighter jets? Are Canadians seriously bought into the idea that the US will gladly protect us with their military? We're a frickin' sovereign nation - we need to have a military budget and equip our troops just like a real country. (This said as a pacifist - and a realist.)

I'm all in favour of buying new fighter jets, but the F35 is a stealth attack aircraft, designed to penetrate sophisticated air defence systems and attack ground targets, NOT a fighter. It's not very useful for defending Canadian airspace, and hugely overkill for missions such as supporting Canadian troops in Afghanistan. Throw in the high cost of the aircraft and the major additional costs for maintaining the stealth features (a significant problem for the B2 stealth bomber), and we'd be better off buying the improved F18E/F that was designed as a replacement for our present CF18A/D aircraft.

Ibanez
03-26-2011, 06:11 AM
Yeah, we've never had a majority government with the Bloc around.

No wait, we have. Three times.

I was answering this question. "Is a majority government in Canada possible anymore?"

Attitudes have changed in la belle province. The riding Hull/Aylmer which is about 5 minutes from Ottawa has been a liberal riding since the dawn of time. Two elections ago the Bloc was about short about 5% of the votes from wining the riding. The last election it was close to 3%.

For a riding that is heavily dependent on federal jobs due to a militant bilingualism hiring policy where the main people benifiting from it are Francophones. It's just a matter of elections before that riding votes in a separatist.

Ignore that if you wish.

orcenio
03-26-2011, 07:47 AM
Attitudes have changed in la belle province. The riding Hull/Aylmer which is about 5 minutes from Ottawa has been a liberal riding since the dawn of time. Two elections ago the Bloc was about short about 5% of the votes from wining the riding. The last election it was close to 3%. That result is from 2006. Wikipedia is telling me (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hull%E2%80%94Aylmer) that in 2008 the Liberals increased their lead to 15%

2008
Lib 37.47%
Bloc 22.07%

2006
Lib 32.69%
Bloc 29.37%

2004
Lib 41.87%
Bloc 32.49%

Gatineau (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gatineau_(electoral_district)) is still Bloc though (and an NDP Quebec target).

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 07:49 AM
According to this morning's Star (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/962129--tories-on-brink-of-majority-as-election-looms?bn=1), it may be possible.

And I make no apologies for using the Toronto Star as a reference. If what they say is false, prove it. I make a point of looking at the Toronto Sun to see what the other side is saying from time to time.

detop
03-26-2011, 09:45 AM
I say we all change our stripes and vote NDP!

I personally hate Mr Harper and his cronies, but am willing to admit we were lucky to have a fiscal conservative at the helm through a world wide financial crises. That said, I refuse to vote for the dude.

And the Liberals just suck it. They deserve to lose and get shellacked, in my opinion. They keep foisting leaders upon us, one after another, not a leadership skill among them! They are hopelessly lost and disconnected from their constituency.

Now I feel there is little difference between the two quite honestly. They are lying weasels who will say anything to get power. There is no reform in them, they sold their souls long ago.

I think people are woefully tired of a bad choice, election after election.

I'm not sure the NDP would make good government, but hey, they could hardly be worse. And I think what western society needs the most is protection from predatory capitalists. The Libs and Conserv's cannot possibly deliver. And under their watch Canadian's have been served up to be exploited, badly, often, and repeatedly. I think the NDP might be just the thing.

Plus, and I love this so, so much, Jack has been saying we need to lose the Senate. A man after my own heart. They do nothing, it's just a cushy, well paid job for the well connected once set out to pasture. Killing time till they can collect their ginormously generous pensions. It costs something like $360 billion to have a stupid 'do nothing' senate. I say lose them, the sooner the better.

Even if I end up changing my mind, come election day. I am telling everyone that I'm tired of these two bullshit parties and the same stupid bad choice election after election, so I'm voting NPD! The Libs and Conservs can 'suck it!'.

And I'm encouraging everyone I know to participate in the same sport. I say shake it up, it can't get worse. I'd love to see the polls reflect that everyone is so cheesed they are switching their allegiance out of sheer spite.

It's either that or start a movement to demand they go back to counting and reporting the spoiled ballots, like they used to. Then motivate everyone who's pissed about the proroguing of parliament, or the scandals, or just pissed to be having another election for no real change, to destroy their ballots.

Yeah, I'm a little bitter, it's true. I think the average Canadian is too!

Preach it, brother ! When your choices are between Conservative vermin® and Liberal scum®, THEN, you HAVE to vote NDP. It's the only sane choice (unless you happen to have a Rhino running :D).

Leaffan
03-26-2011, 09:51 AM
With a minority government, it's all a balancing act. I expect some very dramatic fiscal changes if (once?) the Conservatives get a majority.

Some once said "all politics is local." (Google tells me it was Tip O'Neill.)

I'll up that to "all politics is personal." Having worked in manufacturing for years I completely agree with lower corporate tax rates. With the dollar at par it's increasingly difficult to justify keeping manufacturing jobs here. And lower consumption taxes help too.

As for the F-35s: Let's not cancel yet another much-needed military acquisition. The Sea King replacements still aren't available coming up on 20 years after Chretien cancelled those.

Le Ministre, I know you're employed in the arts, and completely get why an NDP government would be more supportive of your interests.

Not sure where Rysto works?

Gorsnak
03-26-2011, 10:35 AM
As for the F-35s: Let's not cancel yet another much-needed military acquisition. The Sea King replacements still aren't available coming up on 20 years after Chretien cancelled those.
The F-18s are getting old, it's true, but the situation is nothing like the Sea Kings. I consider the EH101 cancellation and subsequent politicized chopper selection process as Chretien's single biggest fuckup (though he'd really tied his hands during the 93 campaign). It wasted orders of magnitude more public money than the sponsorship scandal. This isn't anything like that. The Hornets aren't falling out of the sky. No one can articulate why we should buy F-35s rather than Super Hornets or Eurofighters. There's been no competitive selection process.

I won't lose any sleep in the F-35 purchase goes ahead, but it's entirely appropriate to question it. Maybe if the Harper GovernmentTM had lived up to its campaign promises of transparency as effectively as Chretien lived up to his promise to cancel the EH101, we'd have some idea of why we're buying from Lockheed Martin rather than from Boeing or the Euro consortium without any sort of public tendering process.

Rysto
03-26-2011, 11:10 AM
As for cutting off funding for political parties and bankrupting the opposition, the Conservatives are liquid due to fundraising; I see no reason why all the other political parties can't do what the Conservatives have done and quit expecting taxpayer money to keep them solvent.
Well, don't forget that funding for political parties was brought in at the same time that political donations from corporations and unions were banned, which cut off quite a lot of funding for the Liberals and NDP.

ETA:
Not sure where Rysto works?
High tech.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 11:38 AM
Well, don't forget that funding for political parties was brought in at the same time that political donations from corporations and unions were banned, which cut off quite a lot of funding for the Liberals and NDP.


And from the Conservatives, as well.

The thing is, it is not necessarily to the country's advantage to have power go to the party supported by those with the greatest wealth. There have been many ideas to level the playing field, all of which have advantages and disadvantages.

Leaffan - for the record, I have been a professional singer/actor/musician for almost 30 years. In my experience, the party that has the best support for the arts has always been the Liberals. I was an NDP member in the heady days of 1990, when Bob Rae came to power in Ontario. Imagine my dismay when the Ballet-Opera House, which we had needed since the Canadian Opera Company was founded, was denied funding, at which point the entire deal fell apart and had to be started from scratch. I have since spoken with the then NDP Minister of Culture and to an extent, we have made up, but that was the point when I left the NDP and I have never been back.

Certainly for this election, our only real chance of replacing Prime Minister Stephen Harper is to elect at least a Liberal minority, if not a Liberal majority. If the Conservatives have even one seat more than any other party, I believe the precedent dictates that they must be given the chance to form the government, however fragile. (I will defer to those who know better - I haven't the time to thoroughly research that statement.) The likelihood of their forming a coalition with any of the other parties is small, though politics does make for strange bedfellows. Certainly, the Liberals and the NDP would seem a more natural pairing, but the Liberals would have to get at least one seat more than any other party. A steep curve, it would seem, but many things can happen between now and May 2nd.

As to the Bloc, they are not invincible in Québec. All the other parties have to do is run better candidates, a fact which seems to escape people who promote electoral reform. I was brought up by my parents to vote for the strongest local candidate whose party platform you could accept. That advice led them to vote Progressive Conservative for most of my youth, even though they were blue Liberals rather than red Tories. The local Conservative MP was someone my father had met in WWII, and he knew him for a man of intelligence and integrity, publicly and privately. As long as that MP was around, no Liberal short of Jesus Christ himself had much of a chance in our house.

Cat Whisperer
03-26-2011, 12:48 PM
I'm all in favour of buying new fighter jets, but the F35 is a stealth attack aircraft, designed to penetrate sophisticated air defence systems and attack ground targets, NOT a fighter. It's not very useful for defending Canadian airspace, and hugely overkill for missions such as supporting Canadian troops in Afghanistan. Throw in the high cost of the aircraft and the major additional costs for maintaining the stealth features (a significant problem for the B2 stealth bomber), and we'd be better off buying the improved F18E/F that was designed as a replacement for our present CF18A/D aircraft.

The F-18s are getting old, it's true, but the situation is nothing like the Sea Kings. I consider the EH101 cancellation and subsequent politicized chopper selection process as Chretien's single biggest fuckup (though he'd really tied his hands during the 93 campaign). It wasted orders of magnitude more public money than the sponsorship scandal. This isn't anything like that. The Hornets aren't falling out of the sky. No one can articulate why we should buy F-35s rather than Super Hornets or Eurofighters. There's been no competitive selection process.

I won't lose any sleep in the F-35 purchase goes ahead, but it's entirely appropriate to question it. Maybe if the Harper GovernmentTM had lived up to its campaign promises of transparency as effectively as Chretien lived up to his promise to cancel the EH101, we'd have some idea of why we're buying from Lockheed Martin rather than from Boeing or the Euro consortium without any sort of public tendering process.
Looking into it a little further, the situation isn't anywhere near cut-and-dry. (http://www.reuters.com/article/2010/07/16/canada-fighters-idUSN1611146620100716?pageNumber=1) It looks like these particular planes are agreed-on by a group of countries that are involved in funding their purchases, there was a tendering process, the maintenance contracts are still being discussed, and this purchase was started by the Liberals way back when. Questioning it is appropriate; cancelling it just for the hell of it isn't. I don't want another Sea Kings (or Avro Arrow) debacle.

Somebody was talking about PM Harper and his reducing the GST; I would like to harken back to Chretién and the GST - you want to talk about some political weaselling. No, that's not the right term - he bald-facedly lied to us. The weaselling came later when he tried to explain why he said he'd scrap the GST, then didn't. I (and probably most of us here) are also old enough to remember Canada before any GST; somehow we limped along with just corporate taxes, income tax, and built-in taxes paying for all the things we want government to supply with our money. Here's an article discussing the GST cuts, and whether they were good or bad. (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/WinnipegHome/20090123/GST_economy_090125/)

Both of these issues speak to an ongoing problem with running a country in fits and starts - one party starts something, the next party cancels it or takes it in a completely different direction - it's a bit of a wonder anything ever gets done.

Raygun99
03-26-2011, 01:00 PM
I (and probably most of us here) are also old enough to remember Canada before any GST; somehow we limped along with just corporate taxes, income tax, and built-in taxes paying for all the things we want government to supply with our money.

You do realize those taxes were higher than the current situation, right? The 7% GST replaced a 13.5% manufacturer's tax. The problem is not that there is a GST - in fact it's the opposite. The problem is that the government does not have the adequate funding to pay for the things we're asking it to supply, and reducing that tax is a horrible thing to do when you have a deficit.

Rysto
03-26-2011, 01:06 PM
Somebody was talking about PM Harper and his reducing the GST; I would like to harken back to Chretién and the GST - you want to talk about some political weaselling. No, that's not the right term - he bald-facedly lied to us.
As did Harper on Income Trusts. In both cases, the parties made stupid campaign promises that they couldn't possibly follow through on.

dhkendall
03-26-2011, 01:19 PM
Just the other day Peter Kent was on AM640 describing Chrétien’s years as "dark times in Canadian history" and overall tone of his monologue was extremely impolite and flat out disgusting. And, he’s a freaking Cabinet Minister.

:confused:

Peter Kent is a Conservative MP. What's he supposed to do, talk *nice* about the Liberal Chretien government?

I'm trying to figure out what you mean by this - that you're serious, and think the Liberals should always rule Canada as their God-given right, or you're joking. I think I'll just assume you're joking, because that makes a lot more sense. Ha ha, good one. :)

I think this was a reference to the Liberals' moniker as "Canada's Natural Governing Party", which I've heard bandied about a bit. I think it's in reference to the fact that the politics of Canadians as a whole are most closely matched to the Liberal Party. (Plus, there's also the fact that Canada has been ruled by a Liberal government more than any other party (even if you include all stripes of the Conservatives together).

As long as that MP was around, no Liberal short of Jesus Christ himself had much of a chance in our house.

:confused:

But why would He change parties? (Old punchline)

Leaffan
03-26-2011, 03:18 PM
As did Harper on Income Trusts. In both cases, the parties made stupid campaign promises that they couldn't possibly follow through on.

Agreed. But in both cases they made the right choice for the country.

I voted Liberal in 1993. I haven't since, but never say never.

Leaffan
03-26-2011, 03:29 PM
.....
Leaffan - for the record, I have been a professional singer/actor/musician for almost 30 years. In my experience, the party that has the best support for the arts has always been the Liberals.......

Apologies. Somehow I thought I remembered you supporting the NDP.

Leaffan
03-26-2011, 03:34 PM
Let's talk about Gilles. I like Gilles, strangely enough.

I like him, but abhor the Bloc.

Gilles is in the unique position when discussing national politics, that he can just tell it like it is without worrying about the consequences. He's only in it for the best interests of Quebec, makes no apologies about it, and doesn't have to dance around issues like everyone else does.

He's a pretty straight-up guy and would be awesome if he wasn't supporting the separatists. He comes across very well in the debates, and I'm looking forward to his crazy-eyed comments this time around. As usual.

YMMV.

newcomer
03-26-2011, 04:02 PM
:confused:

Peter Kent is a Conservative MP. What's he supposed to do, talk *nice* about the Liberal Chretien government? Not necessarily “nice” but also, top-level Conservatives should leave throwing mud to lower level operators. As a Cabinet Member I expected him to state what exactly was the issue with Chretien’s time because I lived through those and somehow I cannot comprehend why use such an extreme and vulgar term. Who does he think he is attracting with venom like that?

I think this was a reference to the Liberals' moniker as "Canada's Natural Governing Party", which I've heard bandied about a bit. I think it's in reference to the fact that the politics of Canadians as a whole are most closely matched to the Liberal Party. (Plus, there's also the fact that Canada has been ruled by a Liberal government more than any other party (even if you include all stripes of the Conservatives together). Yes, that's what I meant.

Anyways, it's set for May 2nd. Saw Mr. Harper this morning after his meeting with GG and couldn't help but notice his talking points on "coalition" and on and on... and on. It was funny when CBC reporter commented afterwards that his use of the word is to scare people, almost like "coalition will burn your house down" - it was refreshing to see reporter calling it right away. Also, Harper's avoidance of the word "illegal" in reference to coalition was a sign that his at least aware (I think he said that it would not be principled - like we all know he is so "principled").

And then Iggy came and said there will be no coalition. Somehow, methinks it wont help because the word is out and coaltion scare will be major campaign tool for Cons.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 04:48 PM
In my opinion, 'contempt' is a far dirtier word that 'coalition'.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 04:58 PM
Apologies. Somehow I thought I remembered you supporting the NDP.

No need to apologize - I am not a member of any political party at present, though I could see myself joining the Liberals. Particularly on environmental issues and progressive social areas like same-sex marriage, I'm far enough left that the red seems to shift to orange...

mcott
03-26-2011, 06:03 PM
Let's talk about Gilles. I like Gilles, strangely enough.

I like him, but abhor the Bloc.

Gilles is in the unique position when discussing national politics, that he can just tell it like it is without worrying about the consequences. He's only in it for the best interests of Quebec, makes no apologies about it, and doesn't have to dance around issues like everyone else does.

He's a pretty straight-up guy and would be awesome if he wasn't supporting the separatists. He comes across very well in the debates, and I'm looking forward to his crazy-eyed comments this time around. As usual.

YMMV.

I gotta agree with this. Frankly, if the Bloc eased back on the separation thing (yes I know it's one of their main platform pieces), and ran candidates outside of Quebec, say in Ottawa Centre, among others, I could see myself supporting them.

The rest of their platform seems pretty reasonable, and I do like the aforementioned "tell it like it is" stance.

That's one of the reasons that I could never run for office - I'd like to see more free votes, because party A has some good ideas, so does party B, party C less appealing, we've covered the Bloc, and the Greens are just nuts.

MPs should be able to vote their constituents voices instead of having to tow the party line in most cases.

YMMV on this as well.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 06:07 PM
Here's an interesting article (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/duceppe-says-harper-lying/article1958049/) about how Stephen Harper, Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe sent a letter to the Governor General in September of 2004, outlining the possibility their 'co-operation' in the event of the downfall of the Liberal government of the time.

“They all come to us when they need us. They all want to be in our bed, but they don’t want to marry us,” Mr. Duceppe said. is already my favourite quotation of the election campaign.

The Flying Dutchman
03-26-2011, 07:46 PM
I'm all in favour of buying new fighter jets, but the F35 is a stealth attack aircraft, designed to penetrate sophisticated air defence systems and attack ground targets, NOT a fighter.


The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is a family of single-seat, single-engine, fifth generation multirole fighters under development to perform ground attack, reconnaissance, and air defense missions with stealth capability.

It's not very useful for defending Canadian airspace,



The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is a family of single-seat, single-engine, fifth generation multirole fighters under development to perform ... air defense missions with stealth capability.

Throw in the high cost of the aircraft and the major additional costs for maintaining the stealth features...

Maintaining stealth features?

You need to explain that to me. Stealth is provided by the use of composite materials for the exterior skin that lasts as long if not longer than aluminum which is subject to corrosion as well as careful surface profile design and tucking away normally exterior equipment. None of these criteria for stealth is subject to maintainence requirements as far as I can determine.

There is no avionics providing a cloak of invisibility in stealth technology.



Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_Martin_F-35_Lightning_II)

Ike Witt
03-26-2011, 07:54 PM
Why the heck did Canada buy the CF-18s to begin with? There was absolutely no reason to get rid of the CF-104 "Widow Makers".

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-26-2011, 08:20 PM
How about this Liberal Senator (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/20110311/senator-lavigne-fraud-110311/)?

He's neither a Liberal nor a Senator anymore - he was kicked out of the caucus in 2006. Lavigne is a former Liberal MP who was appointed to the Senate back in 2002. However, he was expelled from the Liberal caucus in 2006. He was kicked out of the Senate in 2007.Since being kicked out of the Senate in 2007...

While I'd prefer some form of corporal discipline taken from the 19th century Royal Navy, I will have to content myself with the punishments the court has established. I don't promise, however, that I won't kick him sharply in the balls if I'm ever introduced to him. I hate it when people are a disgrace to parties that I admire.

Cat Whisperer
03-26-2011, 08:40 PM
<snip> I don't promise, however, that I won't kick him sharply in the balls if I'm ever introduced to him. <snip>
Now I've got MY favourite quote from this election season. :D (And it's quite a mind picture!)

Threads like this really do make me appreciate the Dope - we have people posting intelligent, well-thought-out, logical perspectives from the entire political spectrum here; we're obviously not all wrong, nor all right. There's a whole lot of subjective in politics, and anyone who thinks differently is probably kidding themselves.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-27-2011, 12:03 PM
Cat Whisperer - you've just given me an excellent idea. The SDMB version of C-pac, being like a cross between MST3K and the standard network talking heads from the three parties kind of show. We could heckle question period live like Statler and Waldorf from the Muppet Show while asking the intelligent questions the MPs are trying their hardest to duck. Off to get my cable license...

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-27-2011, 12:11 PM
And here is a link (http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2011/03/26/f-coalition-government-canada.html?sms_ss=facebook&at_xt=4d8f6d97b9d75b1b%2C0) to an interesting CBC article about coalitions as they apply to Canada.

Cat Whisperer
03-27-2011, 12:56 PM
Cat Whisperer - you've just given me an excellent idea. The SDMB version of C-pac, being like a cross between MST3K and the standard network talking heads from the three parties kind of show. We could heckle question period live like Statler and Waldorf from the Muppet Show while asking the intelligent questions the MPs are trying their hardest to duck. Off to get my cable license...
Sign me up! I love heckling!

mnemosyne
03-27-2011, 05:51 PM
Let's talk about Gilles. I like Gilles, strangely enough.

I like him, but abhor the Bloc.

Gilles is in the unique position when discussing national politics, that he can just tell it like it is without worrying about the consequences. He's only in it for the best interests of Quebec, makes no apologies about it, and doesn't have to dance around issues like everyone else does.

He's a pretty straight-up guy and would be awesome if he wasn't supporting the separatists. He comes across very well in the debates, and I'm looking forward to his crazy-eyed comments this time around. As usual.

YMMV.

This ties in to the popularity of the Bloc in Québec, too. People here feel their needs are being better addressed than before the Bloc formed, and everyone knows that the sovereignty issue won't be resolved at the federal level anyways. Duceppe is a popular, charismatic leader who has had a lot of success representing this province. So voting for the Bloc doesn't really mean a vote for sovereignty, it's just a vote for good representation of Québecois needs in the House of Commons, though they do use sovereignty as a weapon to get what they want. Every region in Canada wishes their MP/party of choice would represent them well...Québec has actually found a way to do that!

That said, I don't vote for the Bloc. I don't really need to, given as I live in Duceppe's riding (and at minimum not voting for him means my $2 or whatever doesn't go towards those terrible pamphlets with the crap photography Duceppe sends out every few months...the man is horribly unphotogenic!).

In a sense, I'm free to vote my conscience, and choose the MP/party that meets my views the best. That party never has been - and likely never will be - the Conservatives. I find I disagree with them on the topics I'm knowledgeable enough about, and expect that the more I learn, the more I'd disagree with them on other topics too. I'm also very uncomfortable with the behind-closed-doors, secrecy, controlling the media and all the other shit they've been pulling the past few years. "Harper Government" sums it up well enough - they aren't working for Canada, they are working for themselves. That might be true of every damn party, but most don't advertise it! I think I would very much dislike a Conservative majority government.

Muffin
03-27-2011, 05:58 PM
Too bad the Bloc does not run outside of P.Q. It would be funny as hell if the separatist party ended up running the country. Only in Canada, eh!

tingbudong
03-27-2011, 05:58 PM
A fiscal conservative? We are talking about the man who made a campaign promise that he wouldn't change the tax rules for income trusts, only to be forced to completely reverse the decision within a year because doing nothing would do immense damage to the Canadian economyt? That fiscal conservative? The man who cut the GST against the pleas of every economist in Canada -- a move that is largely responsible for the terrible fiscal position Canada finds itself in today? That fiscal conservative? The man who, upon seeing the devastation the subprime mortgage crisis was wreaking in the US, said "I've got to get me some of that!", and proceeded to commit the Government of Canada to repaying every penny of any 40-year mortgage with absolutely no downpayment that went bad? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailout out Ford and GM? That fiscal conservative? The man who is committed to cutting corporate taxes at a time when Canada faces a deficit around $40 billion, with the progress made in paying off the debt in the late 90s and early 2000s almost completely eliminated? That fiscal conservative? The man who spent billions bailing out the auto industry? That fiscal conservative? The man who, by his own rosy projections, expects to be running a deficit until 2015 -- and the independent Parliament Budgetary Officer projects that there will still be a deficit in 2015?

Stephen Harper may be a conservative. But a fiscal conservative? Not a chance.

*Bolding mine

It's the conservatives total sidelining of professional and academic knowledge and advice that has me longing for more enlightened leadership. Their killing of the long-form census and their deep desire to move Canada toward an American style prison-industry complex (and they call Iggy an American...)

Spoons
03-27-2011, 07:50 PM
"Harper Government" sums it up well enough....No snark intended at mnemosyne; but her (and others') use of this seems to have become an issue in the media, and consequently, among Canadians, lately.

It shouldn't be. The PM's name, followed by the word "government" has long been a way for the media to present news and commentary about Canadian politics. Some cites:

Trudeau government calls off P.E.I. causeway plan (http://archives.cbc.ca/science_technology/engineering/clips/2988/), CBC, March 8, 1969.

The CF-18 fighter jet acquisition by the Trudeau government (http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/article/837235--not-so-fast-on-f-35-purchase), in "Not so fast on F-35 purchase," Toronto Star, July 18, 2010.

Schreiber ... received $6.5 million when the Mulroney government agreed in principle to manufacture the vehicles in Canada (http://www.thestar.com/article/633575), in "Money from Schreiber 'retainers,' Mulroney says," Toronto Star, May 13, 2009.

[Michael] Wilson, part of the Mulroney government... (http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/Canada/20110325/mulroney-border-free-trade-110325/), in "Mulroney urges Harper to loosen Canada-U.S. border," CTV News, March 25, 2011.

The Rae government began to "own" the recession (http://www.thestar.com/comment/article/605938), in "Déjà vu all over again for Ontario?" Toronto Star, March 22, 2009.

And lest anybody think that it is merely the media that uses such a phrase, I'll offer a cite from Pierre Elliot Trudeau himself, in which he uses the phrase, "my government," indicating that even PMs will use the possessive when describing their years as head of government:

"I know, of course, that the record of my government is still attacked rather vigorously and almost obsessively by our Conservative successors." Pierre Elliot Trudeau, Memoirs, Toronto: McClelland and Stewart, 1993, p. 355. (Cite (http://books.google.ca/books?id=vAm450unFFUC&printsec=frontcover&dq=trudeau+memoirs&hl=en&ei=rNqPTb6xH4GmsQPskv39CA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=book-thumbnail&resnum=1&ved=0CDcQ6wEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false).)

elbows
03-27-2011, 08:00 PM
All true, of course. But Harper has taken it to a new level, being his government.

He tells them what to say, and when to shut up, in a controlling way that, I believe, has not been seen before. He even decides who can give interviews, sheesh.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-27-2011, 08:10 PM
Even in the height of his arrogance, Trudeau never suggested changing 'Government of Canada' to 'the Trudeau Government' in official documents or press releases from the Government of Canada.

From this article (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/tories-re-brand-government-in-stephen-harpers-name/article1929175/) in the Globe and Mail And lest anyone forgets, a directive went out to public servants late last year that “Government of Canada” in federal communications should be replaced by the words “Harper Government.”

Public servants from four different line departments told The Canadian Press the instruction came from “the Centre” — meaning the Prime Minister's Office and the Privy Council Office that serves the prime minister.

I much prefer Rick Mercer's take (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMBMcMf85ow) on the question.

Leaffan
03-27-2011, 09:15 PM
All true, of course. But Harper has taken it to a new level, being his government.

He tells them what to say, and when to shut up, in a controlling way that, I believe, has not been seen before. He even decides who can give interviews, sheesh.

Cite?

Spoons
03-27-2011, 09:23 PM
All true, of course. But Harper has taken it to a new level, being his government.

He tells them what to say, and when to shut up, in a controlling way that, I believe, has not been seen before. He even decides who can give interviews, sheesh.A controlling way that has not been seen before?

In my life, I've experienced Liberal Pierre Trudeau bypassing Parliament and using an Order-in-Council to invoke martial law during the October Crisis; Conservative Brian Mulroney stacking the Senate with Tories to ensure his GST bill is passed; and NDPer Bob Rae ignoring collective bargaining rights and ordering Ontario public employees to take days off without pay.

Somehow, Canada survived each of the above. I like to think we're strong enough that what anybody, even the government itself, calls the federal government, doesn't matter. Sticks and stones, and all that.

Leaffan
03-27-2011, 09:33 PM
*Bolding mine

It's the conservatives total sidelining of professional and academic knowledge and advice that has me longing for more enlightened leadership. Their killing of the long-form census and their deep desire to move Canada toward an American style prison-industry complex (and they call Iggy an American...)

You're seriously concerned about the cancellation of a census form?

American style prisons? Please. Our population is growing; therefore we need more prison space. Just like, as our population grows, we need more schools and more hospitals.

This "US-style" moniker is thrown about by left-wing media who are somehow convinced that the need for more prison space somehow equates us with the ridiculous incarceration of people with minor drug offences, which occurs in the US.

We don't jail people for minor drug offences. We have a pretty decent court system. Unfortunately as our population grows, we need more prison spaces. This is not a legal exercise; this is a mathematical exercise.

And you're being brainwashed.

Rysto
03-27-2011, 10:00 PM
You're seriously concerned about the cancellation of a census form?
Having accurate information is the foundation of sound public policy. How can a government make good decisions without solid information? Harper's rejection of knowledge-based decision making in favour of truthiness frankly scares me.

American style prisons? Please. Our population is growing; therefore we need more prison space. Just like, as our population grows, we need more schools and more hospitals.

This "US-style" moniker is thrown about by left-wing media who are somehow convinced that the need for more prison space somehow equates us with the ridiculous incarceration of people with minor drug offences, which occurs in the US.

We don't jail people for minor drug offences. We have a pretty decent court system. Unfortunately as our population grows, we need more prison spaces. This is not a legal exercise; this is a mathematical exercise.
You must have been right up above. We are occupying completely different planets. Do you pay any attention at all to politics? Your statements here are completely at odds with the "tough dumb on crime" legislation that Harper keeps trying to push through.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-27-2011, 10:02 PM
You're seriously concerned about the cancellation of a census form?

Yes. The elimination of the compulsory long form census means that the information gathered will be less accurate. It will also cost more to gather and the Conservatives therefore intend to charge more for people to access the information gathered.

Economists are supposed to make dispassionate decisions based on the best available information. Making it more expensive and less accurate is a strange move for someone who is lauded for having a Masters in Economics, especially when the decision is based on some undocumented phone calls to Tony Clement's riding office.



American style prisons? Please. Our population is growing; therefore we need more prison space. Just like, as our population grows, we need more schools and more hospitals.

This "US-style" moniker is thrown about by left-wing media who are somehow convinced that the need for more prison space somehow equates us with the ridiculous incarceration of people with minor drug offences, which occurs in the US.

We don't jail people for minor drug offences. We have a pretty decent court system. Unfortunately as our population grows, we need more prison spaces. This is not a legal exercise; this is a mathematical exercise.

And you're being brainwashed.

Crime is down. We don't need bigger prisons at the moment, and there's no indication we will need bigger prisons in the future. When pressed on the question, Stockwell Day said that the amount of unreported crime was a concern that merited bigger prisons. And if the crime is unreported, who exactly is going to prison for it?? That never got an answer that I heard...

Building prisons does play well with people who are brainwashed, and don't look at crime statistics.

By the way, will you accept the above Globe and Mail quotation as a cite for elbows' post? Her wording is stronger than I would have chosen, but it would seem that the Prime Minister's Office was directing civil servants to make the change to 'The Harper Government'. I am one of those who finds that unforgivably arrogant for someone who had only 30% of the popular vote.

Leaffan
03-27-2011, 10:20 PM
I dunno.

Anyway, aren't other countries also abandoning long-form census forms? It's late, and my Google-fu is weak, but didn't a few other countries (UK?) just do the same thing since, due to electronic databases, and information sharing, the need to duplicate the effort was deemed wasteful?

Seriously asking, but I think you'll find this is the real reason why the bureaucratic waste behind the long-form census was stopped.

Crime isn't down either. The methods of reporting crime have changed. Crime isn't down. I'll come back tomorrow with a cite. Really. It's late.

ETA: I should care if the government wants to call itself the Harper Government?

mnemosyne
03-27-2011, 10:26 PM
Even in the height of his arrogance, Trudeau never suggested changing 'Government of Canada' to 'the Trudeau Government' in official documents or press releases from the Government of Canada.

From this article (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/tories-re-brand-government-in-stephen-harpers-name/article1929175/) in the Globe and Mail

I much prefer Rick Mercer's take (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMBMcMf85ow) on the question.

Yes, it was the use of "Harper government" on official memos that I was referring to, not the media's use of the term to reference them. It smacks of an arrogance that doesn't sit well with me, and I think that would only get worse with a majority government.

I'm also against scrapping the long-form census, because I believe the data on a voluntary survey would skew the results to exclude minorities, low-income and low-education households since they are less likely to fill out the form - I believe this based on the facts and data provided the Statistics Canada. I think that policy decisions made on the new survey will harm those people, and I think that's a terrible thing and that the Harper government has shown that they don't care about members of these groups.

I don't think the numbers add up for the money for federal prisons the Conservatives want to spend. I also don't know how anyone could be prosecuted and put in jail for unreported crimes.

I don't follow politics all that closely, but I do read my news from several news sources - I'll read the articles from the G&M, Gazette, National Post, Toronto Sun and Star and the CBC as they show up on my Google News feed. On issues like these, I try and read multiple points of view, and although I don't retain details well enough to debate them here, I generally reach a conclusion on any given issue that does not mesh with the Conservatives. They do not represent me, and they make me uncomfortable and unhappy with my government.

RickJay
03-27-2011, 10:43 PM
and we'd be better off buying the improved F18E/F that was designed as a replacement for our present CF18A/D aircraft.
... to add to the corrections that have alreadyy been made to your misapprehension of the F-35's capabilities, the Super Hornet was not designed to replace the CF-18. It was designed as a multi-role fighter (like, say, the F-35) to meet the needs of the US Navy, to replace the F/A-18, F-14 and A-6 and A-7; it is very much a fighter meant t be able to do everything, and in that way is like the F-35.

Rysto
03-27-2011, 10:46 PM
Crime isn't down either. The methods of reporting crime have changed. Crime isn't down. I'll come back tomorrow with a cite. Really. It's late.
You are, no doubt, going to come back with the Macdonald-Laurier report (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/think-tank-targets-statscans-falling-crime-rate-claim/article1901452/) that was released recently. That report had serious problems (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/opinions/opinion/crunch-the-numbers-crime-rates-are-going-down/article1913808/), including failing at basic arithmetic.

Spoons
03-27-2011, 10:47 PM
Crime is down. We don't need bigger prisons at the moment, and there's no indication we will need bigger prisons in the future.As one who deals with crime and criminals in the courts, I don't know if I agree with "crime is down"; but I will attest to the fact that we in Canada tend to deal with things differently than our American friends do. With the understanding that most accuseds (the term we use instead of the American "defendant") whom I have represented are accused of "small stuff," I'll state that most accuseds are not incarcerated pending court, JIROs (aka bail hearings) present a chance for the accused to legally get out of custody, and habeas corpus always obtains. Within that context, most (sadly, not all) accuseds I've known and represented have behaved themselves, shown up to court on time, and obeyed all conditions of JIRO and probation orders. In other words, from my point of view, "it ain't broke, so don't fix it."

I'm a little leery of the Tories' "tough on crime" agenda; I worry that my "small stuff" clients will end up being somehow screwed when they don't deserve it.

Leaffan
03-27-2011, 10:52 PM
I'm also against scrapping the long-form census, because I believe the data on a voluntary survey would skew the results to exclude minorities, low-income and low-education households since they are less likely to fill out the form - I believe this based on the facts and data provided the Statistics Canada. I think that policy decisions made on the new survey will harm those people, and I think that's a terrible thing and that the Harper government has shown that they don't care about members of these groups.

You don't think those data already exist? They do.

Harper government doesn't care about minorities, low-income, low-education people? Wow. Just wow. There is no plausible reason for making such absurd and defamatory statements. This is unacceptable, really. Do you really think Mr. Harper, and his wife (his Humane Society supporting wife) don't care about the underprivileged?


I don't think the numbers add up for the money for federal prisons the Conservatives want to spend. I also don't know how anyone could be prosecuted and put in jail for unreported crimes.

You don't "think." You have no facts. Crime is a constant. We need jails. You want Russell Williams out on parole?

Do some research.

The Conservatives are good guys. Do you think they intentionally want to ruin the country or something? Their policies are sound. They have only the best interests of Canadians at hand.

Leaffan
03-27-2011, 11:05 PM
Sorry, but I'm trying to place myself in a position where I would state that the "Liberals are an arrogant bunch of pricks, who are trying to steal democracy away from Canada. They want to spend money on war planes, give money to rich banks and oil companies, and don't give a shit about Canadian families."

This is the rhetoric being spewed by the left now, and if you could please just shake your head, you would realize that no Canadian government party would actually think this way.

Spoons
03-27-2011, 11:17 PM
It smacks of an arrogance....You are, of course, free to feel that no other government in Canada's history has been arrogant; but I would suggest that the facts are otherwise. Both Pierre Trudeau and Brian Mulroney showed (IMHO, YMMV) incredible arrogance towards the people of Canada; displaying at times a smug paternalism in the sense of "poor children, they have no idea what is best for them, so I will tell them what is best for them and force them to do it."

I guess my point is that "arrogance" means little to nothing, as arguable examples can be found in all governments throughout our history. After all, which party's Prime Minster was the only one to use an Order-in-Council to bypass Parliament, curtail civil rights, and invoke martial law during peacetime? Hint: the party name started with "L." Which party, despite the wishes of Canadians, stacked the Senate to ensure passage of a bill that was massively unpopular? Hint: The party name was abbreviated "PC."

Just so there are no assumptions about me personally, I'll add that I am the Canadian politician's worst nightmare: non-partisan, and unwilling to see Harper, Ignatieff, or Layton as the single unqualified answer to all that ails us at this time. I support none but will listen to all while considering the context of history, and would like to see a good discussion of all positions on the issues. I hope we can have one here.

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 12:07 AM
You don't think those data already exist? They do.

Harper government doesn't care about minorities, low-income, low-education people? Wow. Just wow. There is no plausible reason for making such absurd and defamatory statements. This is unacceptable, really. Do you really think Mr. Harper, and his wife (his Humane Society supporting wife) don't care about the underprivileged?

Ok, my wording was awkward. Let me try again.

I think that eliminating the long form census (rather than the more simple fix of no jail time, but fines and still making it mandatory) dismisses groups that will be underrepresented by the voluntary survey and makes it appear as though the government is completely fine with that and doesn't care about their interest. Is that clearer?

It looks bad, and for a lot of special interest groups, there is a legitimate fear that future data collected won't adequately represent them. The data currently exists because it's part of the mandatory census, or Stats Can makes specific - and costly - research programs to obtain the data in the event that it isn't. In order to address the gaps in the voluntary survey, specific surveys and statistics research programs would have to be established, thereby costing us more money in the long run.

FWIW, I clearly do not feel that anything I've ever been asked on the long and short census has been a violation of my privacy. That data is available through other sources, but it is far from unified (one reason the UK could do it is that they have more shared data management across the country than we do - to pick a random example off the top of my head, the RAMQ does not have shared data with Ontario Health, while the NIH is national in the UK). The long form census is a controlled, consistent, clearer and cheaper way to obtain information very much needed by various interest groups and for policy decisions.



You don't "think." You have no facts. Crime is a constant. We need jails. You want Russell Williams out on parole?

It was the conclusion I came to at the time, when I was reading articles about the so-called need for prisons and the "unreported crime." I saw no numbers that adequately convinced me that the plan was worth it. That's not saying no prisons are needed. That's not saying some new prisons aren't needed. I'm saying that I was not convinced that the claims the Conservative government was making were backed up by enough information, and therefore I reached the conclusion that the proposed legislation was inappropriate.

I refuse to spend a ton of money on jails because of one person. The existence of Russell Williams is not enough of a bogeyman to convince me we need to spend a shit ton of money on prisons.

The Conservatives are good guys. Do you think they intentionally want to ruin the country or something? Their policies are sound. They have only the best interests of Canadians at hand.

Intentionally want to ruin the country? No. But I do not like their policies, I do not agree with them on various issues - at least enough issues for me to disagree with them in general; I'm sure there are some things I agree with, just not enough - and most importantly they do not represent me. They are not the direction I want this country to go in, and so I cannot and will not vote for them. I make this choice because as a voter I have the best interest of Canadians and Québecois at hand.


You are, of course, free to feel that no other government in Canada's history has been arrogant; but I would suggest that the facts are otherwise. Both Pierre Trudeau and Brian Mulroney showed (IMHO, YMMV) incredible arrogance towards the people of Canada; displaying at times a smug paternalism in the sense of "poor children, they have no idea what is best for them, so I will tell them what is best for them and force them to do it."

I never said such a thing, I do not feel that way, and I'm perfectly aware of how arrogant other governments have been or appeared to be. But those aren't the government we have today, and I dislike the arrogance of the current one, and I feel perfectly within my rights to call them on it. The current government is arrogant enough as a minority, I'd hate to see them as a majority. They ran on accountability and transparency, then duck, hide, lie, control and manipulate left and right. It's disgusting and condescending. Others have done it, others will do it again, but I'm tired of this band of "leaders".


Just so there are no assumptions about me personally, I'll add that I am the Canadian politician's worst nightmare: non-partisan, and unwilling to see Harper, Ignatieff, or Layton as the single unqualified answer to all that ails us at this time. I support none but will listen to all while considering the context of history, and would like to see a good discussion of all positions on the issues. I hope we can have one here.

Right - I vote for the collection of ideas/principles/policies that most closely resemble my own opinions on issues and/or the ones I am at least somewhat comfortable with if they were applied to this country. That just has yet to ever coincide with what the Conservatives have offered.

I'll pay a little more attention in the coming month, I'll listen to the issues, I'll try and make an informed choice, and I will vote my conscience, as I always do.

Cat Whisperer
03-28-2011, 12:33 AM
I'll add my voice to people saying that I don't see the Harper Conservatives doing anything that I haven't seen other parties and leaders doing before. As for Prime Minister Harper personally being arrogant, well, as they say in sports, it ain't bragging if you can do it - he is arguably the most powerful man in Canada, and if he wants to feel a little full of himself, he's kind of earned it (I don't actually see that in him myself; I see him as being less charismatic than someone like Trudeau {who I think was truly arrogant - haven't seen PM Harper giving anyone the finger recently}, and that doesn't always play well in the media).

As for people being brainwashed, I like to turn on the CTV National news every once in a while to see how things are being spun on that station versus our local stations. If you think media doesn't have bias, you're kidding yourself.

Spoons
03-28-2011, 02:11 AM
....I never said such a thing....Apologies, then. I did not mean to attribute anything,

Spoons
03-28-2011, 02:51 AM
Intentionally want to ruin the country? No. But I do not like their policies, I do not agree with them on various issues - at least enough issues for me to disagree with them in general; I'm sure there are some things I agree with, just not enough - and most importantly they do not represent me. They are not the direction I want this country to go in, and so I cannot and will not vote for them. I make this choice because as a voter I have the best interest of Canadians and Québecois at hand.That's fine. But given that you are a Quebeoise. I'm sure that you know that the working class of the ROC regards your vote as biased. You vote Bloc, and that's what Quebecers do; you vote Liberal because of Trudeau (who was a Quebecer); you vote Tory because of Mulroney (who was also a Quebecer). You won't vote based on reason as regards the entire country; to you, Quebec's interests trump all. And once again, Quebec gives a hearty "screw you" to the ROC.

Sorry, but that's how the rest of us in the ROC see you.

I'm sorry, mneosyne, and to the other Quebec Dopers, but I'd suggest that until you give us a good reason why we should listen to you as regards why Quebecers are somehow special in Confederation; you are just one province in ten. No more nor less special rhan any other province.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-28-2011, 07:55 AM
An interesting development; from this article (http://presscore.ca/2011/?p=1980) - On Friday March 25, 2011 the Canadian House of Commons found Prime Minister Stephen Harper guilty of contempt of Parliament. According to parliamentary law, contempt of parliament is a federal crime. Being that Harper has been found guilty of a crime Harper is barred from seeking re-election on May 2, 2011. No federal government or cabinet minister has ever been found in contempt before.

I have no idea how this will play out but for those of us who feel this is an issue in this election, the irony is palpable.

Northern Piper
03-28-2011, 08:25 AM
Le Ministre de l'au-delà, I have two comments on this article.

1. I instinctively discount any article found on a website which also carries an article explaining that HAARP caused the Japan earthquake. :rolleyes:

2. Contempt of Parliament is not a crime, but a matter of parliamentary practice. It is a matter of political judgment. Individuals can be disqualified from standing for election to the Commons, but only if they have been convicted in a court of law of illegal or corrupt practices under the Canada Elections Act. See s. 502(3) of the Canada Elections Act (http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/E-2.01/page-256.html#h-188).

newcomer
03-28-2011, 09:01 AM
[QUOTE=Northern Piper;136224002. Contempt of Parliament is not a crime, but a matter of parliamentary practice. It is a matter of political judgment. Individuals can be disqualified from standing for election to the Commons, but only if they have been convicted in a court of law of illegal or corrupt practices under the Canada Elections Act. See s. 502(3) of the Canada Elections Act (http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/E-2.01/page-256.html#h-188).[/QUOTE] Regardless of the treatment, contempt of parliament is a serious offence.

What I’m slightly amazed is that there is no further investigation into actual incident that brought this parliamentary measure – the fact that an elected official would, after all the due diligence, simply DENY the funding for an organization out of blue and actually forge the document.

Now, why is it that you cannot find exactly the reason Bev Oda handwritten NOT?

That seems to be quite the challenge. Minister does something that compels Pariament to vote her in contempt but no one really knows why she did it... :dubious:

Muffin
03-28-2011, 09:35 AM
newcomer, the Oda matter was unrelated to the confidence motion.

The government refused to produce certain financial information to the House Standing Committee on Finance concerning the F-35 purchase, claiming privilege. This was a serious problem, because to do its job, the House of Commons needs to know about the details of major purchases that the government is making. The government asserted that the purchase information was confidential to Cabinet, and refused to disclose it to the House of Commons.

Please note that the disclosure was for:


 The estimated cost of the F-35 aircraft per airplane, and how these costs
fit into the fiscal framework;
 The original estimates and the final costs of hosting the G-8 and G-20
summits;
 The adjustments to the fiscal framework to incorporate the costs of Bills
C-4, C-5, C-16, C-17, C-21, C-22, C-23(A), C-23(B), and C-39 from the
40th Parliament; and
 The estimated cost to the federal treasury of the Government of Canada’s
planned reduction of corporate tax rates from January 1, 2011 onwards.
Upon receiving none of the requested information, FINA passed a second motion
on November 17, 2010. This motion ordered the government to provide FINA with
electronic copies of the following information within seven calendar days:
 Five-year projections of total corporate profits before taxes and effective
corporate tax rates (2010-11 to 2014-15); and
 All documents that outline acquisition costs, lifecycle costs, and
operational requirements associated with the F-35 program and prior
programs (CF-18).

The motion also requested information in respect of certain justice legislation be
provided to FINA within seven calendar days. Concerning the bills requested in FINA’s
October 6, 2010 motion, as well as Bills S-2, S-6, S-7, S-9, S-10, C-48, C-50, C-51, C-52
from the 40th Parliament, FINA ordered the government to provide FINA the following
information:
 The incremental cost estimates of the requested bills;
 The baseline departmental funding requirement excluding the impacts of
the bills and acts;
 The total departmental Annual Reference Level (ARL);
 Detailed cost accounting, analysis and projections, including assumptions,
for each of the requested bills and acts, conducted in accordance with the
Treasury Board Guide to Costing; and
 The Department of Finance’s adjustments to the fiscal framework to
incorporate the costs of the Government of Canada’s justice legislation.



The issue was bumped up to the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, which found the government in contempt of Parliament. http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Content/HOC/Committee/403/PROC/Reports/RP5047570/403_PROC_Rpt27_PDF/403_PROC_Rpt27-e.pdf

The Leader of the Opposition, Ignatieff, then successfully made a motion to cite the government in contempt of Parliament, based on the above finding of contempt by the Standing Committee. Note that the contempt was against the government, not just the Prime Minister Harper.

With the whole government having been found in contempt of Parliament, the Governor General then dissolved Parliament so that a new election could be held.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 09:42 AM
Le Ministre, that silliness published by CORE about Harper now being prohibited from running in the election has no basis in law what so ever, as Northern Piper has explained. A good way of looking at it without having to wind through the technicalities is to ask if it makes sense for there to be a law on the books that would permit a minority coalition to bar the entire government from running for election based on a single contempt motion. Obviously not.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 09:46 AM
For folks who want to read last Friday's contempt debate, it is at http://www2.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=40&Ses=3&DocId=5072532#Int-3827567 but give it time to load so that your browser can advance to the pinpoint.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 10:19 AM
A primary responsibility of Parliament is to hold the government accountable.

Without full and sound information, Parliament cannot do its job.

When a government refuses to provide necessary information to Parliament without good reason, then it is refusing to be held accountable to Parliament – refusing to be held accountable to the people of Canada to whom Parliament itself is responsible.

When a government stands in the way of Parliament doing its job, then it is time for the government to fall, regardless of whether that government was running the country nicely or not, and regardless of the likelihood of there being another minority government.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 10:25 AM
A couple of corrections to my earlier post:

The government refused to produce certain financial information to the House Standing Committee on Finance concerning the F-35 purchase, claiming privilege.
I should have written " . . .concerning the F-35 purchase and several other major government expenditures and tax matters, . . ."

The issue was bumped up to the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, which found the government in contempt of Parliament. http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Content/HOC/Committee/403/PROC/Reports/RP5047570/403_PROC_Rpt27_PDF/403_PROC_Rpt27-e.pdfI should have written "After some incomplete productions, the issue was bumped up the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs . . . ."

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 10:32 AM
That's fine. But given that you are a Quebeoise. I'm sure that you know that the working class of the ROC regards your vote as biased. You vote Bloc, and that's what Quebecers do; you vote Liberal because of Trudeau (who was a Quebecer); you vote Tory because of Mulroney (who was also a Quebecer). You won't vote based on reason as regards the entire country; to you, Quebec's interests trump all. And once again, Quebec gives a hearty "screw you" to the ROC.

Sorry, but that's how the rest of us in the ROC see you.

I'm sorry, mneosyne, and to the other Quebec Dopers, but I'd suggest that until you give us a good reason why we should listen to you as regards why Quebecers are somehow special in Confederation; you are just one province in ten. No more nor less special rhan any other province.

:rolleyes:

You are not sorry. You are a bigot. You dismiss my opinions and my vote out of hand because of where I am from, and not because of their validity. You ascribe motivations and an agenda to me and to nearly 8 million other people based upon your hate and prejudices. You insult me by saying that I do not vote based upon reason. You insult be by saying that I only vote for people from this province (I have not stated who I will vote for, nor do you know my voting history), you insult me by saying that my vote and voice as a Canadian is automatically a "screw you" to the rest of you. You insult me by suggesting that I do not love Canada as much as I do Québec. And you are a liar if you are implying that other regions - people in other provinces, quite possibly yourself included - do not vote according to what they feel will best represent them, their province, and improve life for themselves. Why do you think the Conservatives are often called a "Western" party, and the Liberals an "Eastern" or "Ontarian" one?

I am NOT sorry, but I've lost a ton of respect for you. I thought you were better than that.

ThePylon
03-28-2011, 10:39 AM
I don't understand the Liberal party's problem with a coalition. And I am a member.

I'm reminded of the scene in Clear and Present danger where Ryan advises the President to not only admit to knowing a man with questionable nature, but claim to be a great friend.

What I'd do, right now if at all possible is state " Coalition? What a great idea! What better way to represent the majority of Canadians?"

I understand the idea of a coalition is polling as a negative, but I think that has a lot to do with everyone treating the idea as such an abhorrent idea. The Bloc may have ideas about sovereignty, but like it or not, they officially represent a large portion of Canada as it is now. Involving them in a coalition would, IMHO, reduce their rhetoric.

Leaffan
03-28-2011, 10:46 AM
A primary responsibility of Parliament is to hold the government accountable.

Without full and sound information, Parliament cannot do its job.

When a government refuses to provide necessary information to Parliament without good reason, then it is refusing to be held accountable to Parliament – refusing to be held accountable to the people of Canada to whom Parliament itself is responsible.

When a government stands in the way of Parliament doing its job, then it is time for the government to fall, regardless of whether that government was running the country nicely or not, and regardless of the likelihood of there being another minority government.

I don't believe they were withholding anything. Sometimes all of the costing information isn't readily available. They provided information when asked. What we have here is an agenda by the opposition to railroad the governing party. The Liberals knew they would look foolish if they supported yet another Conservative budget, so they started brainstorming ways to bring down the government without having to do it in a budgetary non-confidence motion.

Good luck with that (http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/Tory+support+stays+high+ethics+falling+flat+Poll/4514126/story.html).

Despite a weekend of being hammered for their alleged contempt of Parliament, the Conservatives boast the support of 41 per cent of decided voters — 17 points ahead of the Liberals, who are at 24 per cent. The NDP is at 19 per cent, and the Bloc 10 per cent.

orcenio
03-28-2011, 11:02 AM
I don't understand the Liberal party's problem with a coalition. And I am a member.Why should the Liberals legitimize their rivals (the NDP and the Bloc) with cabinet seats? The Liberal brand means a lot in Canada and they don't want the NDP or the Bloc to even look like viable alternatives. It would be a stupid long-term move for little short-term gain.

ThePylon
03-28-2011, 11:25 AM
Why should the Liberals legitimize their rivals ....

I don't know what the brand means any more. It hasn't meant much for the past 5 years. Any coalition would have to be weighted towards the Liberals (assuming they get the lion's share opf seats of said coalition), which , IMO, actually lessens the legitimization of them as an alternative. If the Liberals have any desire of remaining the "natural governing party", they should be coming across as more co-operative, not less.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 11:57 AM
I don't believe they were withholding anything. Sometimes all of the costing information isn't readily available. They provided information when asked. What we have here is an agenda by the opposition to railroad the governing party.

The record disagrees with you.

Let's start with your accusation of railroading. For that to take place, there would have to have been bias on the part of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that found the government in contempt was chaired by a Conservative, and had the same number of Conservatives sitting on it as all other parties combined (6 Conservatives, 3 Liberals, 2 Blocs, 1 NDP). Despite this, the Committee still found the government in contempt.

When brought into the matter, the Speaker of the House of Commons did not find bias or railroading, but instead found that the government had failed in its productions without providing an explanation.

The long-time Speaker of the House of Commons, who back at the dawn of time (1993) had been the Chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, ruled on 9 March 2011 that it was an issue of privilege, and referred to his previous 27 April 2010 citing of the House of Commons Procedure and Practice that states that the power of the House of Commons or of standing committees to order the production of papers and records is “broad,” “absolute,” and “on the surface appears to be without restriction.”

On 17 February 2011, the Speaker noted that the disclosure provided by the government did not constitute all of the information that had been ordered; that he found the lack of response on the part of the government on this matter was “unsettling;” that what was of greater concern was “the absence of an
explanation for the omissions;” and that this was a serious matter, which went “to the
heart of the House’s undoubted role in holding the government to account.”

Leaffan
03-28-2011, 12:03 PM
The record disagrees with you.

Let's start with your accusation of railroading. For that to take place, there would have to have been bias on the part of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that found the government in contempt was chaired by a Conservative, and had the same number of Conservatives sitting on it as all other parties combined (6 Conservatives, 3 Liberals, 2 Blocs, 1 NDP). Despite this, the Committee still found the government in contempt.

When brought into the matter, the Speaker of the House of Commons did not find bias or railroading, but instead found that the government had failed in its productions without providing an explanation.

The long-time Speaker of the House of Commons, who back at the dawn of time (1993) had been the Chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, ruled on 9 March 2011 that it was an issue of privilege, and referred to his previous 27 April 2010 citing of the House of Commons Procedure and Practice that states that the power of the House of Commons or of standing committees to order the production of papers and records is “broad,” “absolute,” and “on the surface appears to be without restriction.”

On 17 February 2011, the Speaker noted that the disclosure provided by the government did not constitute all of the information that had been ordered; that he found the lack of response on the part of the government on this matter was “unsettling;” that what was of greater concern was “the absence of an
explanation for the omissions;” and that this was a serious matter, which went “to the
heart of the House’s undoubted role in holding the government to account.”
Good info. Thanks.

Rysto
03-28-2011, 12:03 PM
I don't believe they were withholding anything. Sometimes all of the costing information isn't readily available. They provided information when asked.
No, they didn't. When asked they claimed it was a matter of cabinet confidence and refused to provide the details. It was only after the Speaker referred the matter to committee to investigate whether the government was in contempt that they provided the documents -- which was months later. And at that time, they admitted that nothing in the documents was actually a matter of cabinet confidence: hence the finding of contempt.

This is the third time that you've posted something in this thread that is factually untrue. Could you kindly either make the effort to understand the issues before posting on them, or stop filling this thread with noise?

Leaffan
03-28-2011, 12:16 PM
I'm sorry to have wasted your precious time Rysto.

I'm only trying to better understand the issues, as you can see by my reply to Muffin. My courteous reply, that is.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 12:27 PM
Why should the Liberals legitimize their rivals (the NDP and the Bloc) with cabinet seats? The Liberal brand means a lot in Canada and they don't want the NDP or the Bloc to even look like viable alternatives. It would be a stupid long-term move for little short-term gain.There will be no long term gain for the Liberals if they keep losing.

At a riding level, often the vote on the left is split between the Liberal and the NDP candidates, permitting a Conservative candidate to win. In these circumstances, if the centre-left only ran one candidate, the Conservative would lose. Add that up across much of the country, and you would no longer have the Conservatives in power.

Is there that big a difference between Liberals and NDPs? Sometimes yes, and sometimes no (I've spoken with more than one MP who has had difficulty deciding which party to run for), but I think that there will be a very big difference in results between the NDP as an outsider pushing for a somewhat sympathetic majority Liberal government to move to the left, and the NDP and the Liberals as outsiders pushing a non-sympathetic majority Conservative government to move to the left.

Or to put it another way, I think that the direction of the country would go more in the direction that the NDP wants if it were to merge with the Liberals and form a majority government, than if we were to have a Conservative majority.

I really don't see the Liberals being able to go toe to toe any more against the Conservatives now that the Liberals no longer hold Quebec.

Spoons
03-28-2011, 01:13 PM
You are not sorry. You are a bigot.Apologies if my message came across personally; I didn't mean it to. My use of "you" was the generic one. Although after re-reading my post, I'll concede that it may have appeared personal. Again, sorry about that.

As for the "bigot" assertion, well, big deal. I'm saying nothing more that what is said so often out here in the west, and what I've heard on my travels in the English-speaking provinces of this country: who does Quebec think they are? Why are they constantly complaining? Why does Ottawa bend over backwards to make them happy? I've heard this from the wealthy and the poor; in coffee shops, bars, factories, and offices; in big cities and small towns from St. John's to Victoria.

Perhaps you don't hear it, but I do. Perhaps your media tells you that the ROC is mean and nasty because it won't give Quebec what it wants; while our media tells us that an ungrateful Quebec is bitching yet again about how it is so hard done by.

If I'm a bigot; well then, so is the ROC.

You dismiss my opinions and my vote out of hand because of where I am from....To a degree, yes. You are from the only province where the majority of citizens (not necessarily you personally) feel the need to have their own federal party. The Liberals may be associated with Ontario and Quebec, and the Conservatives with Alberta, but none of those provinces, or any of the others feel the need to set up a federal party to represent their interests in Parliament.

But Quebec has a federal party. Why? Is it special somehow? I might have a lot more respect for Quebecers who vote BQ and the BQ itself if (a) it dropped "Quebecois" from its name; and (b), if it ran candidates outside of Quebec. As it is, representing only Quebec and without ever running enough candidates to form a government, the BQ is seen by many in the ROC as only there to distract attention from issues that affect other regions or the country as a whole, and to flip-flop around in Opposition. In other words, we see the BQ as only there to stir stuff up.

And to advance separatism. It may not be a major issue, and may be way down on the BQ's agenda right now, but it is always quietly bubbling away. In that sense, yes; a vote for the BQ is a "screw you" to the ROC. Honestly, what's next? A Newfoundland Party to try to reopen the cod fisheries? A BC Party to legalize marijuana?

I know what it's like to be dismissed out of hand because of where I am from. I am from Alberta. As such, I apparently cannot possibly understand what happens on Bay Street or in Ottawa; I supposedly only know pickup trucks, country music, and oil wealth. Heck, if you listen to others, I'm as rich as Midas, but I spend it like a drunken sailor. None of these assertions are true, of course, but they have been made. When I'm in Vancouver or Toronto, and I speak with a local who holds these views, I do my best to correct these assumptions.

If you don't want to be dismissed out of hand because of where you are from, I would suggest that you, and those Quebecers who think as you do, work towards legitimizing Quebec's voice outside of Quebec. Prove to us that Quebecers are not precious snowflakes who need special treatment from Ottawa. Indicate to us that Quebec's concerns are valid, but no more nor less than any other province's. I will concede that you, mnemosyne, do a good job of this here on the SDMB--now, you just need to get your message to the ROC.

... And you are a liar if you are implying that other regions - people in other provinces, quite possibly yourself included - do not vote according to what they feel will best represent them, their province, and improve life for themselves.Of course they do, but I'd suggest that they do so within the context of the parties that are presented for their consideration. Again, no current federal party presents itself as putting any single province first--except the BQ. No Liberal, Conservative, or NDP candidate says to a voter, "I'll make sure your province's concerns top our agenda." No, they present themselves as candidates for a federal party, working to advance and improve Canada as a whole. Naturally, they do so according to their party's agenda. Liberal candidates out here face an uphill battle because they are seen as not caring about Alberta; I'm sure Conservative candidates in Ontario face the same problem.

Sadly, we do not elect people to represent our interests in Parliament; we vote for people who belong to a party with a platform. My MP will never vote according to what the people of my region want; he or she will vote as the party dictates, even if it is contrary to what we want locally. If that's the case, well, too bad. Unfortunately, "representing the interests of the voters who elected you" in Parliament isn't possible under the current system.

I am NOT sorry, but I've lost a ton of respect for you. I thought you were better than that.Fair enough.

elbows
03-28-2011, 01:40 PM
As for the "bigot" assertion, well, big deal.

Seriously?

I'm saying nothing more that what is said so often out here in the west

So someone else's bigotry, makes yours okay?

Do you expect to be taken seriously after making such comments? Do you think being from the west entitles you to be bigoted and obnoxious?

The Tooth
03-28-2011, 01:44 PM
If it helps, I'm Alberta born and bred as well and I have nothing against Quebec. Nice jazz festival you have there, guys. Ours was cancelled last year. The Annual Stampede and Horse Cull went ahead as scheduled, though.

Regards,


L. Beaudoin

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 02:20 PM
Apologies if my message came across personally; I didn't mean it to. My use of "you" was the generic one. Although after re-reading my post, I'll concede that it may have appeared personal. Again, sorry about that.

You say you are sorry then go on and continue to attack Quebec over misconceptions, misunderstanding, blind anger and irrational rage. You aren't sorry. I know you're Canadian and apologizing is our national past-time and all, but please attempt to be sincere.

As for the "bigot" assertion, well, big deal. I'm saying nothing more that what is said so often out here in the west, and what I've heard on my travels in the English-speaking provinces of this country: who does Quebec think they are? Why are they constantly complaining? Why does Ottawa bend over backwards to make them happy? I've heard this from the wealthy and the poor; in coffee shops, bars, factories, and offices; in big cities and small towns from St. John's to Victoria.

And I hear people say all kinds of crap about Ontarians, Westerners, Easterners, Maritimers, Northerners, Quebecers, you name it. I hear it all. But here's the difference. I don't believe it, I don't spread it, and I don't use it to justify attacking people because of where they are from.

Who does Quebec think they are? They are a province of 8 million predominantly French-speaking people who, until 60 or so years ago, could not work, be served or be adequately educated in their own language. It's a recent, ugly history, with many people who lived it still alive. Some of the rhetoric is reactionary, some of it goes too far (pendulum effect) but at the end of the day they are a province who has stood up for their own rights, and are damn proud of who they are. They made demands because the feel - quite rightly - that for a long time they were treated as second-class citizens. They made demands because they could; that's part of the beauty of a democracy (social democracy, parliamentary whatever the hell technical term we have here in Canada). Why does Ottawa bend over backwards? I'm not sure they do- Quebec doesn't get a lot of what it asks for, but you only hear them asking, rarely do you hear the outcome. It's enough for Quebec to ask to get people with views like yours all in a rage. But if you don't ask, you can never receive.

Perhaps you don't hear it, but I do. Perhaps your media tells you that the ROC is mean and nasty because it won't give Quebec what it wants; while our media tells us that an ungrateful Quebec is bitching yet again about how it is so hard done by.

I do hear it. And it's wrong. "My" media doesn't say the ROC is mean and nasty - there is very little hate for the ROC beyond the few rabid asshole soverignists, who are, as I said, FEW. But you love to pick up on that and accuse the entire province of thinking the same way. I am telling you, we do not, just like I'm sure you're not some raving lunatic fundamentalist anti-gay born-again Christian like some of the raving loons on the fringes of your regional politics.

Besides, as I said, "my" media includes the English-language newspapers as well as the French ones. I'll read the points of view in the Vancouver Sun, the Winnipeg whateverthehellitis (it's got a blue banner), the Toronto media, the G&M, National Post, Montreal's Gazette, la Presse, CBC/Radio-Canada, Journal de Montreal, Métro....whatever happens to catch my eye and I have time to read. So "my" media is "your" media, get it? Just because you don't read alternate points of view to your own doesn't mean they aren't out there. And just because I'm from Québec, doesn't mean I won't look beyond my province's borders. You should try it some time.

If I'm a bigot; well then, so is the ROC.

I'm sure every other Canadian loves this broad brush you are painting them with :rolleyes:

To a degree, yes. You are from the only province where the majority of citizens (not necessarily you personally) feel the need to have their own federal party. The Liberals may be associated with Ontario and Quebec, and the Conservatives with Alberta, but none of those provinces, or any of the others feel the need to set up a federal party to represent their interests in Parliament.

And why not? If your region/province isn't being adequately represented by your members of parliament why the fuck not ask your MPs to stand up for you? YOU ARE CANADIAN. YOU are what the federal government should be working for. Why accept a government that doesn't work for you? You can hate on Québec all you want for speaking up, but I think your anger is misplaced. Stand up for yourself, for your province. Stand up for a better Canada, where everyone is well represented.

But Quebec has a federal party. Why? Is it special somehow? I might have a lot more respect for Quebecers who vote BQ and the BQ itself if (a) it dropped "Quebecois" from its name; and (b), if it ran candidates outside of Quebec. As it is, representing only Quebec and without ever running enough candidates to form a government, the BQ is seen by many in the ROC as only there to distract attention from issues that affect other regions or the country as a whole, and to flip-flop around in Opposition. In other words, we see the BQ as only there to stir stuff up.

Because that's what you choose to see. I haven't paid attention - is an individual outside of Québec actually barred from running as a BQ candidate, or is it just that no one has bothered to do so? They run in ridings where they think they can win: I think there are some ridings in Québec where there wasn't even a Conservative candidate last election (or two ago? I forget).

You see it as trying to stir stuff up. Although I am not a supporter of the BQ, I see it as people in this province trying to improve their lot in life. Nothing is stopping you from doing the same, but your hate-on for Québec is blinding you from that fact.

And to advance separatism. It may not be a major issue, and may be way down on the BQ's agenda right now, but it is always quietly bubbling away. In that sense, yes; a vote for the BQ is a "screw you" to the ROC. Honestly, what's next? A Newfoundland Party to try to reopen the cod fisheries? A BC Party to legalize marijuana?

Why not? If every region begins to ask for more self-determination, if every region begins to question the way the federal government runs and functions, then who knows what could happen. The fear is dissolution of the country, but IMHO the more logical - and best for everyone - response would be to reassess the balance of power, reassess the division of funding, reassess the strings attached to federal money and projects. Get a better deal for everyone. But no one wants to do that, and any discussion about it brings up more hate for Québec from Meech Lake rather than other Canadians looking themselves in the mirror and asking what they really want from their country.

I know what it's like to be dismissed out of hand because of where I am from. I am from Alberta. As such, I apparently cannot possibly understand what happens on Bay Street or in Ottawa; I supposedly only know pickup trucks, country music, and oil wealth. Heck, if you listen to others, I'm as rich as Midas, but I spend it like a drunken sailor. None of these assertions are true, of course, but they have been made. When I'm in Vancouver or Toronto, and I speak with a local who holds these views, I do my best to correct these assumptions.

So if you're so noble as to correct assumptions about you, as an Albertan, they why the fuck would you continue to propagate hateful, ignorant, misinformed, stereotype-based assumptions about Québec?

If you don't want to be dismissed out of hand because of where you are from, I would suggest that you, and those Quebecers who think as you do, work towards legitimizing Quebec's voice outside of Quebec. Prove to us that Quebecers are not precious snowflakes who need special treatment from Ottawa. Indicate to us that Quebec's concerns are valid, but no more nor less than any other province's. I will concede that you, mnemosyne, do a good job of this here on the SDMB--now, you just need to get your message to the ROC.

Our concerns are valid. We speak French -we want that to continue, and rightly demand our government to grant that to us. We deserve education - we want to have our population be educated, and want some say in how that gets done. We are human, we want health-care, and want a say in how money for that gets spent. We have a large contribution to the military - we want a say in how our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends and neighbours are treated, how they are protected, how they are used. Gah, I'm not even going to go further - our concerns are the same as yours. The difference, as I said earlier is until very recently, we had none of that. We dared ask, and you hate us for it.

I don't think I'm better than you. But I am no worse than you. Québecois have the right to speak up - and they do. If you have a problem with that, the problem is yours.

Of course they do, but I'd suggest that they do so within the context of the parties that are presented for their consideration. Again, no current federal party presents itself as putting any single province first--except the BQ. No Liberal, Conservative, or NDP candidate says to a voter, "I'll make sure your province's concerns top our agenda." No, they present themselves as candidates for a federal party, working to advance and improve Canada as a whole. Naturally, they do so according to their party's agenda. Liberal candidates out here face an uphill battle because they are seen as not caring about Alberta; I'm sure Conservative candidates in Ontario face the same problem.

Sadly, we do not elect people to represent our interests in Parliament; we vote for people who belong to a party with a platform. My MP will never vote according to what the people of my region want; he or she will vote as the party dictates, even if it is contrary to what we want locally. If that's the case, well, too bad. Unfortunately, "representing the interests of the voters who elected you" in Parliament isn't possible under the current system.

Fair enough.

You say "sadly" and you say it isn't possible to have your representatives represent you. Québec said "sadly" and are trying to make it possible. Again, you are free to do the same, if you can get past the blind anger and just see it for yourself.





FWIW, ideally, I'd want a reorganization of this country. A new deal between the provinces, territories and the federal government. I want Quebec to push for more bilingualism, because the workforce and resources we have can make this province so much richer and stronger if the language barrier wasn't a wall we put up ourselves. I also think anyone who says they want to run for office shouldn't be allowed to. I don't expect any of that to happen, though.

Rysto
03-28-2011, 02:55 PM
Our concerns are valid. We speak French -we want that to continue, and rightly demand our government to grant that to us. We deserve education - we want to have our population be educated, and want some say in how that gets done. We are human, we want health-care, and want a say in how money for that gets spent. We have a large contribution to the military - we want a say in how our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends and neighbours are treated, how they are protected, how they are used. Gah, I'm not even going to go further - our concerns are the same as yours. The difference, as I said earlier is until very recently, we had none of that. We dared ask, and you hate us for it.
Oh, enough with the martyr complex. What pisses off the RoC is stuff like the $5 billion ransom note the BQ dropped on Stephen Harper in the last month.

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 03:14 PM
I'm either unaware of what "ransom note" you are talking about, or that inflammatory description doesn't happen to trigger any recognition of events that I may have read about. Can you please explain what you mean, so that perhaps we can actually discuss the issue, rather than just feed your rage?

As for the martyr complex... I was asked to validate the concerns of people in Québec. I briefly attempted to do so. I made a point that they are fundamentally no different than the concerns of anyone else in any other province. You chose to attack me over it.

It's clear that you and Spoons have already made up your minds and will choose any and every possible thing to attack me and my province, regardless of the reality of the situation. You will dismiss anything I or my province-mates have to say, just because of where we are born and who we identify as culturally. Your bigotry is showing.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 03:58 PM
I look at the Bloc as a nice block against the Conservatives, for I find the Bloc's positions on social issues tend to be more in tune with my preferences than I do the Conservative's.

Cat Whisperer
03-28-2011, 04:18 PM
I think this is the "ransom note" in question. (http://www2.macleans.ca/2011/01/26/five-billion-dollars/)

So the Harper Government fell on the finding of contempt of parliament, not the budget, eh? I've missed too many news shows lately. Does anyone else find it suspicious that all the Conservative scandal is coming out at the same time; i.e. in time for the other three parties to start campaigning to replace the Conservatives? I have no delusions that the Conservative party is any cleaner or dirtier than any other party; I would like my Federal politicians to be smarter about hiding things, though, and not be quite so obvious.:)

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 07:33 PM
Right, because an editorial in Maclean's magazine, written in strong anti-Québec language is a "ransom note" from a political party.

The author says it himself - half the money is to rectify historical grievances. I know the 2.2B has to do with money every other province received, (in proportional amounts) after complying with a federal request to harmonize the way federal and provincial taxes were collected. From my very quick attempt to understand the situation (read: 2 articles just now instead of doing homework (G&M and TorStar)), Québec was the first to do so, picked up the tab itself, then the rules changed and the federal government paid for everyone else. Why the hell wouldn't Québec want their money back on that? Is there more to it that I'm not aware of? Undoubtedly, and perhaps the number is less than claimed, or maybe it's more, but on the face of it, it's a perfectly legitimate request.


I really don't have the time to try and figure out what the others are all about, let alone determine how legitimate they are (and I have no intention of ever doing so, beyond finding out for my own interest - the Bloc is a party of politicians like any other, with both legitimate aspects and completely assholish ones).

But it doesn't matter. In the end, it all boils down to this:

The residents of Québec, as Canadians, have the right to vote for members of the federal parliament that they feel represent them, same as anyone else in Canada. The residents of Québec have chosen these people to represent them. These people are doing what they believe they were hired to do: they make requests in line with the interests of the people they are representing. Deal with it, because that's the way this country works. If your MP doesn't do this for you, then vote for someone else. To dismiss the opinions of 8 million people out of hand because you disagree with a few of them is childish, hateful and wrong.



I have to go design an aircraft vertical stabilizer now. I'm willing to discuss individual election issues, but I think I'm done trying to explain to people why 8 million Canadians should be allowed to have a say in the House of Commons. I don't think there's much point - to some, I and everyone in this province is a monster, and I don't have the energy to try and prove them wrong. I shouldn't have to.

newcomer
03-28-2011, 08:02 PM
I have to go design an aircraft vertical stabilizer now. I'm willing to discuss individual election issues, but I think I'm done trying to explain to people why 8 million Canadians should be allowed to have a say in the House of Commons. I don't think there's much point - to some, I and everyone in this province is a monster, and I don't have the energy to try and prove them wrong. I shouldn't have to. Agreed.

I'm actually appalled that you need to explain this to a fellow Canadian.

Cat Whisperer
03-28-2011, 08:21 PM
What a microcosm of Canada we have in this thread. :)

Rysto
03-28-2011, 08:49 PM
Right, because an editorial in Maclean's magazine, written in strong anti-Québec language is a "ransom note" from a political party.
Maclean's would have been the last cite I would have chosen. However, for once they got the basic facts right.

From my very quick attempt to understand the situation (read: 2 articles just now instead of doing homework (G&M and TorStar)), Québec was the first to do so, picked up the tab itself, then the rules changed and the federal government paid for everyone else. Why the hell wouldn't Québec want their money back on that?
Because there isn't any tab to pick up. There never was, and that goes for the other provinces as well. If you want to complain that the other provinces had to be bribed to make the change, I'm right behind you

the Bloc is a party of politicians like any other, with both legitimate aspects and completely assholish ones
Sure, but the problem is that the Bloc's assholish aspects end up being a gigantic "Screw you, I got mine!" to the rest of Canada. That tends to stick in people's craw.

These people are doing what they believe they were hired to do: they make requests in line with the interests of the people they are representing. Deal with it, because that's the way this country works. If your MP doesn't do this for you, then vote for someone else.
But I don't want my MP to say "Screw you, I've got mine." I don't want my MP to always act for Waterloo, or even for Ontario. I want my MP to act for Canada. This country is hurt, not helped, when renationalized special interests are appeased. That means to Canada getting shut out of free trade talks with Korea because entrenched agricultural interests in Ontario want to keep in place protectionist supply chain management. It means that Canada loses access to foreign investment in all of its companies because Saskatchewan is worried about short-term losses in tax revenue that would have arisen from the Potash Corp. takeover. It means that Canada keeps getting hefty tariffs imposed on software lumber exports and has to go through expensive, yet future litigation because BC keeps finding new ways to subsidize its lumber industry.

Canada needs less regionalism, not more.

I have to go design an aircraft vertical stabilizer now. I'm willing to discuss individual election issues, but I think I'm done trying to explain to people why 8 million Canadians should be allowed to have a say in the House of Commons.
You need to dial down the rhetoric about 7 notches. The fascist anglais are not marching troops into Quebec and taking away your democratic rights.

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 09:06 PM
*shrug* You see what you choose to see. I will not defend each and every action taken by the Bloc. I simply defend the rights of the people of Québec to vote for whom they wish, and to use their own motivations to do so. You don't have to agree with me, you don't have to agree with them. But do not belittle us, do not insult us, do not insult me.


By the way, your last line? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA Most of this province would consider me anglais (I identify as bilingual)- you really do hate so much you don't even care who you throw your insults at. It's kind of sad, really.

Rysto
03-28-2011, 09:17 PM
you really do hate so much you don't even care who you throw your insults at. It's kind of sad, really.
Any hatred that you believe is spewing from me exists only in your own head. It is you who came out swinging, saying that the rest of Canada wants to take away your right to eduction, to health care, to even vote.

Leaffan
03-28-2011, 09:18 PM
The record disagrees with you.

Let's start with your accusation of railroading. For that to take place, there would have to have been bias on the part of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs. The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs that found the government in contempt was chaired by a Conservative, and had the same number of Conservatives sitting on it as all other parties combined (6 Conservatives, 3 Liberals, 2 Blocs, 1 NDP). Despite this, the Committee still found the government in contempt.

When brought into the matter, the Speaker of the House of Commons did not find bias or railroading, but instead found that the government had failed in its productions without providing an explanation.

The long-time Speaker of the House of Commons, who back at the dawn of time (1993) had been the Chair of the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, ruled on 9 March 2011 that it was an issue of privilege, and referred to his previous 27 April 2010 citing of the House of Commons Procedure and Practice that states that the power of the House of Commons or of standing committees to order the production of papers and records is “broad,” “absolute,” and “on the surface appears to be without restriction.”

On 17 February 2011, the Speaker noted that the disclosure provided by the government did not constitute all of the information that had been ordered; that he found the lack of response on the part of the government on this matter was “unsettling;” that what was of greater concern was “the absence of an
explanation for the omissions;” and that this was a serious matter, which went “to the
heart of the House’s undoubted role in holding the government to account.”

I'm having a hard time finding out exactly who are members on the The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs.

What I did find is this (http://hello.news352.lu/edito-111853-canada-ticks-toward-election-as-vote-looms.html):

The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs, dominated by opposition MPs, last week recommended the government be held in contempt for failing to provide sufficient information on its plans for new prisons and fighter jets.

Now, without going all Rysto on me, can you please provide a membership list?

Thanks.

mnemosyne
03-28-2011, 10:01 PM
Any hatred that you believe is spewing from me exists only in your own head. It is you who came out swinging, saying that the rest of Canada wants to take away your right to eduction, to health care, to even vote.

I did not say such a thing. I do not believe such a thing. Those are assumptions or motivations that you are ascribing to me and this province based upon your own misguided ideas, not upon fact. You have either mistakenly or deliberately misread what I have said, ignored it's context, and/or are simply unable to fairly have this discussion.

I wanted to talk about Canadian politics and the issues affecting this country leading into this election. I am done trying to defend and the history, motivations, and ideas that impact my province, especially to people who will not listen to what I say.

Muffin
03-28-2011, 10:04 PM
I'm having a hard time finding out exactly who are members on the The Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs.

What I did find is this (http://hello.news352.lu/edito-111853-canada-ticks-toward-election-as-vote-looms.html):



Now, without going all Rysto on me, can you please provide a membership list?

Thanks.

Go to the link to the report that I provided in my post: http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Content/HOC/Committee/403/PROC/Reports/RP5047570/403_PROC_Rpt27_PDF/403_PROC_Rpt27-e.pdf

At you will have seen from reading the report to which I linked, page iii is the list of the committee members, including the Chair, two Assistant Chairs, and Members -- a dozen MPs all together.

Then check each for each MP's affiliation on Parliament's list at http://webinfo.parl.gc.ca/MembersOfParliament/MainMPsCompleteList.aspx?TimePeriod=Current&Language=E, or just visit their websites.

Here's what I came up with: six Conservatives a leaping, three Liberals lamenting, two Bloc a blocking, and an NDP in a pear tree:

Joe Preston (C)
Claude DeBellefeuille (B)
Yasmin Ratansi (L)
Steven Blaney (C)
Yvon Godin (N)
Tom Lukiwski (C)
Scott Reid (C)
Terence Young (C)
Harold Albrecht (C)
Judy Foote (L)
Mario Laframboise (B)
Marcel Proulx ( L)

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-28-2011, 10:06 PM
Now, without going all Rysto on me, can you please provide a membership list?

Thanks.

Try this link (http://www2.parl.gc.ca/CommitteeBusiness/CommitteeMembership.aspx?Cmte=PROC&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=40&Ses=3) - from www2.parl.gc.ca

ETA: beaten by Muffin.

Rysto
03-28-2011, 10:14 PM
I'll admit that I probably misread you on the health-care thing, but as to the other two:

Our concerns are valid. We speak French -we want that to continue, and rightly demand our government to grant that to us. We deserve education - we want to have our population be educated, and want some say in how that gets done. We are human, we want health-care, and want a say in how money for that gets spent. We have a large contribution to the military - we want a say in how our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, friends and neighbours are treated, how they are protected, how they are used. Gah, I'm not even going to go further - our concerns are the same as yours. The difference, as I said earlier is until very recently, we had none of that. We dared ask, and you hate us for it.

I have to go design an aircraft vertical stabilizer now. I'm willing to discuss individual election issues, but I think I'm done trying to explain to people why 8 million Canadians should be allowed to have a say in the House of Commons.
(bolding mine)


Who does Quebec think they are? They are a province of 8 million predominantly French-speaking people who, until 60 or so years ago, could not work, be served or be adequately educated in their own language. It's a recent, ugly history, with many people who lived it still alive.
You are talking about something that happened before my parents were born. If you want to condemn me for the sins of my grandfathers go ahead, but don't expect me to take you all that seriously.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-29-2011, 09:28 AM
Yes, it's very tough when one region of the country will not change their minds one iota and insists on imposing their agenda to the detriment of the country as a whole. I mean, really - if they are so stuck in that mindset, nobody can work with them. There are times when I wish they would just leave, already. Don't get me wrong - some of my friends come from there and they seem alright, but when the conversation turns to politics, I don't think they're from a different province, I think they're from a different planet. I know they have a different history, and a different culture, and historical grievances but do I have to hear about all the f@cking time?



Quick - am I talking about Québec or Alberta?

Ike Witt
03-29-2011, 11:42 AM
Quick - am I talking about Québec or Alberta?

I'd say Québec. I don't recall Alberta ever claiming a distinct culture from the rest of Canada.

Cat Whisperer
03-29-2011, 12:03 PM
I've figured out what has been bothering me about the idea of the Bloc having a valid say in representing Quebec as a federal party - each province has a provincial government to represent its provincial interests. Quebec through the Bloc wants TWO says in provincial affairs.

ThePylon
03-29-2011, 12:21 PM
This is kinda funny, kinda scary - It's like we're a grown up country ... we've got political astroturfing!

Craigslist Ad (http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-27oenVw-zeo/TZGrIL6RimI/AAAAAAAAEbs/HOw5ERLRP3s/s1600/Trolls.png)

mnemosyne
03-29-2011, 02:51 PM
Context, Rysto, context. Those quotes you've chosen were made in the context of the historical and political reality Québec comes from, as an explanation for the mentality here and offer a motivation for the behaviour of the province today. They are not attacks on you or the ROC, they are not condemnations. I really don't know where you're getting these ideas from, since they are not based upon anything I have said in this thread or on these boards.

FWIW your parents might not have been born, but mine certainly were, as well as my aunts and uncles. My grandmother had to have protection in her home as her father was publicly threatened with his life by the FLQ during the October Crisis. These are not ancient events - they are in living memory, and for many people, still very recent. This province has changed a lot over the past 60+ years, mostly for the good. A lot of that is because people have chosen to stand up for what they feel is right - and for what they feel are their rights, rights that had, in fact, been denied them. Maybe some of it goes too far, but some has yet to go far enough. It's a balancing act, for sure, and I do not condone everything said and done for this province. But I understand it, and cannot blindly condemn it the way it seems so many other Canadians have.

If the Bloc had never split from the Liberals, but these same people were elected, would all of you have as much problem with it? If it wasn't an issue of sovereignty at all, but simply the recognition that the cultural landscape is different? It really is different: different language, different (historically very) dominant religion, different social ideas (some), different entertainment and cultural influences, etc. Not better, but different, and for a long time, those differences were ignored, denigrated, tossed aside or used against the people here. Is it really wrong, then, to try and put a stop to that? It's not about getting "two says" about things. It's about having a say at all.



I really, really need to stop reading this thread. I think I'm going to regret posting this. :(

Rysto
03-29-2011, 03:49 PM
They are not attacks on you or the ROC, they are not condemnations.
We dared ask, and you hate us for it.
How on earth do you expect me to interpret this as anything other than a condemnation?

mnemosyne
03-29-2011, 04:39 PM
All I can say is what I said before. There is a context to what I wrote which you constantly ignore; you have taken that quote out of it. I had just been effectively told that my vote, my voice, was invalid because of where I am from. I was responding to that hate and bigotry. I can condemn an individual action without condemning the entire ROC. You can't seem to be able to do the same about Québec.


I hate this. I am a Canadian. I am also Québecoise. There is no contradiction here, and no problem here, and absolutely nothing wrong with this reality, which applies not only to me, but to millions of other people in this province.

I'm not strong enough for this. This topic is a painful and emotional one for me; I just don't have the strength to justify or defend myself or my province here. It's too exhausting. I'm sorry, I will not be continuing to respond. It is my failing, not yours.

The Flying Dutchman
03-29-2011, 09:12 PM
I hate this. I am a Canadian. I am also Québecoise.


The first time I ever came across "Quebecois" spelled as "Quebecoise" is in this very thread.

I thought it might be a spelling error.

A little research leads me to this question.

Does this mean you are a woman ?

Cat Whisperer
03-29-2011, 09:18 PM
Yes, she is, and a very nice one, as is her husband (we met them in Calgary a couple of years ago).

The Flying Dutchman
03-29-2011, 10:13 PM
Yes, she is, and a very nice one, as is her husband (we met them in Calgary a couple of years ago).

Her husband is a nice woman ? ;):D

Cat Whisperer
03-29-2011, 10:26 PM
Uh, let me re-phrase that...:)

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-30-2011, 06:42 AM
I'm not strong enough for this. This topic is a painful and emotional one for me; I just don't have the strength to justify or defend myself or my province here. It's too exhausting. I'm sorry, I will not be continuing to respond. It is my failing, not yours.

No, I'm sorry - this is the difficulty of political discussion, that the conflict between two beliefs can so easily lead to this type of friction, and that our adversarial method of debate can silence gentler voices who have much to tell us. I regret your leaving, and I hope you will come back at some time. Despite my family's roots there, I do not claim at all to understand the Québecois point of view.

ThePylon
03-30-2011, 07:44 AM
Not better, but different, and for a long time, those differences were ignored, denigrated, tossed aside or used against the people here. Is it really wrong, then, to try and put a stop to that? It's not about getting "two says" about things. It's about having a say at all.



I really, really need to stop reading this thread. I think I'm going to regret posting this. :(

Are these differences being ignored/denigrated/tossd aside/used against you today? If so, in what way are they? I think the issue today is that the majority of the "ROC" is of the opinion that - yes, you're different and we respect and, in fact, like that. Now can we get on with it (ie being Canada)? And the message from Quebec seems to be "No! Not good enough!"

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-30-2011, 07:04 PM
Sorry, just catching up on some of the interesting things that have come up in the last couple of days.

First, there's an article in The Australian (http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/world/canada-watches-its-democracy-erode/story-e6frg6ux-1226030310248) that spells out all of the parliamentary offsides committed by the Conservatives. As far as I am concerned, we are apathetic fools if we accept any more of this.

There's a very good CBC reality check (http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canadavotes2011/realitycheck/2011/03/harpers-coalition-assertion-they-tried-it-before.html) article that finally lets all the air of of Prime Minister Harper's assertions about the 'illegitimate coalition'. There is only room for two signatures on the 2008 coalition document, that of Jack Layton and Stéphane Dion. The only coalition document with three signatures on it is the one that was sent to then-Governor General Adrienne Clarkson - that one has the signatures of Jack Layton, Gilles Duceppe and Stephen Harper. Layton, Duceppe and Clarkson all state that a coalition was what was being discussed - only Prime Minister Harper claims that because the word 'coalition' does not appear in the document, the other three are lying. Apparently, they were planning on hosting a BBQ.

I actually like it when Prime Minister Harper goes on about the coalition government - it gives Michael Ignatieff more time to propose ideas that would be good for the country, and it makes Prime Minister Harper look like a hypocritical fear monger, which is all I've ever trusted him to be.

The Flying Dutchman
03-30-2011, 09:28 PM
Someone has to bring this up.

Elizabeth May should be in the debates.

I'm assuming that the Green party will field at least 300 candidates again, almost a complete slate. Almost a million Canadians voted Green last time. That not chicken shit.

What is chickenshit is that I and most Canadians have to waste my time listening to Duceppe whose party I can't vote for even if I wanted to. His party fields around 25 % of the candidates that the Green party does.

It just isn't right.

I should be able to listen to May.

This is like the old boys network shutting shutting out an up and coming woman.

fubbleskag
03-30-2011, 09:50 PM
I seem to recall seeing May at the debates of the last election?

The Flying Dutchman
03-30-2011, 09:56 PM
You recall correctly. But not this time.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-30-2011, 10:14 PM
Not yet, anyway.

I agree, there are no legitimate grounds to exclude the Green Party.

antonio107
03-30-2011, 10:35 PM
No, I'm sorry - this is the difficulty of political discussion, that the conflict between two beliefs can so easily lead to this type of friction, and that our adversarial method of debate can silence gentler voices who have much to tell us.

I'm not Quebecois, but this is precisely why I've just been watching this thread without saying a word. I tried so much as making a PEEP on someone's facebook wall, and all the gloves were dropped. :)

DataPacRat
03-30-2011, 11:32 PM
I've been keeping an eye on ThreeHundredEight.com (http://threehundredeight.blogspot.com/), which keeps better track of all the various polls than I can on my own; their current projection is for a Conservative minority, with 151 seats.

The political issues I pay the most attention to are protections of civil rights, and the maintenance of at least a minimal social safety net. According to the Vote Compass (http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canadavotes2011/votecompass/), the party closest to my views is the BQ (heh), with the next two closest being the Libs and NDP, with the Greens not too far off. On just about any axis I care to look at, the Conservatives are on the other end from me. I was a member of the NDP for a few years, and am currently a member of the Pirate Party of Canada (https://www.pirateparty.ca/)... though, since the latter is unlikely to run any candidates in my local riding, I've got the choice of voting Lib, NDP, or Green.

At present, the Conservatives are polling at just under 50% here - the Libs are 20 points behind them, the NDPs 10 behind them, and the Greens 10 behind them. If I want try to put into place an ABC (Anyone But Conservative) MP - then I should be trying to help direct all the non-Conservative votes towards a single candidate, which would mean strategic voting for the Liberal.

One interesting thought I've heard is that if Harper doesn't manage to get a majority... then the PC might go through some internal struggles that result in it splitting back up into Conservative and Reform parties. If the right is as divided as the left... then that just might allow for some useful politics to get done again. I'm not going to hold my breath, but it is a pleasant thought...

Cat Whisperer
03-30-2011, 11:46 PM
<snip>

There's a very good CBC reality check (http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canadavotes2011/realitycheck/2011/03/harpers-coalition-assertion-they-tried-it-before.html) article that finally lets all the air of of Prime Minister Harper's assertions about the 'illegitimate coalition'. <snip>
Speaking of the CBC, there's an article out today indicating that the online voter's compass survey is flawed and defaults to Liberal. (http://www.torontosun.com/news/decision2011/2011/03/29/17798821.html) I took the survey, answering as an Alberta redneck who loves PM Harper and hates everyone else, and guess what? I'm a Liberal! :D

Ibanez
03-31-2011, 02:12 AM
Someone has to bring this up.

Elizabeth May should be in the debates.

I'm assuming that the Green party will field at least 300 candidates again, almost a complete slate. Almost a million Canadians voted Green last time. That not chicken shit.

What is chickenshit is that I and most Canadians have to waste my time listening to Duceppe whose party I can't vote for even if I wanted to. His party fields around 25 % of the candidates that the Green party does.

It just isn't right.

I should be able to listen to May.

This is like the old boys network shutting shutting out an up and coming woman.

Oh please, yeah it's a large collective conspiracy where the old boys club have infiltrated the upper echelons of the CBC and Radio-Canada to keep women out of debates because they're that dangerous. The media is responsible for that decision not the politicians.

I'm glad she's out. Duceppe should be out as well but as we all know Québec is special /sarcasm. I smoke the odd blunt on occasion should I be able to listen to the Marijuana party debate Harper on foreign policy along with all of the other fringe parties that don't hold a seat in the house ? You maybe on to something though I'd love to see a Canadian Free Speech Party run by Ezra Levant tear a few leaders a new one.

The debates in their current format are a snore and a joke. They're too clinical. What I'd like to see is one on one debates an hour long on a limited number of issues with leaders debating others going down the party rosters.

As they stand now they're not worth watching.

Baffle
03-31-2011, 03:03 AM
Speaking of the CBC, there's an article out today indicating that the online voter's compass survey is flawed and defaults to Liberal. (http://www.torontosun.com/news/decision2011/2011/03/29/17798821.html) I took the survey, answering as an Alberta redneck who loves PM Harper and hates everyone else, and guess what? I'm a Liberal! :D

Hey, me too!

I'm apparently a gay marriage supporting, abortion loving super social conservative, too. I think the test is completely random.

DataPacRat
03-31-2011, 04:53 AM
Speaking of the CBC, there's an article out today indicating that the online voter's compass survey is flawed and defaults to Liberal. (http://www.torontosun.com/news/decision2011/2011/03/29/17798821.html) I took the survey, answering as an Alberta redneck who loves PM Harper and hates everyone else, and guess what? I'm a Liberal! :D

The 'vote compass' may be flawed - but not nearly so much as the article seems to imply. The 'research' used was to run through it three times, once selecting the first answer every time, once the middle, once the last - and the people who created the questionnaire arranged the questions so that the first answer was 'conservative' half the time, resulting in all three run-throughs having the 'researcher' end up in the very middle of the two-axis graph. The liberal party's expressed platform, in the form of its answers to the 30 questions, happens to have it positioned closer to the centre of the two axes than the other parties... and thus, the method the 'researcher' used ended up with him getting Liberal as his recommended party all three times.

As for your own results, I'm afraid that not knowing your answers, nor which topics you marked as 'important' or 'not important', etc, I couldn't say much one way or the other. My /guess/ is that you disagree with the official Conservative party platform on enough issues to end up in the no-man's-land between the PCs on one side and the cluster of the other parties on the other. If you want, we can try working through all the questions, and comparing your answer to each question to the parties' answers, and thus figuring out what aspects of each party's platforms are closest to yours - or not. If you do, I'm willing to go through my own answers if you want another point of comparison. Up to you, I suppose.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-31-2011, 06:41 AM
I took the survey, answering as an Alberta redneck who loves PM Harper and hates everyone else, and guess what? I'm a Liberal! :D

I've always suspected, you know...

Cat Whisperer
03-31-2011, 08:04 AM
Hey, me too!

I'm apparently a gay marriage supporting, abortion loving super social conservative, too. I think the test is completely random.I don't think "random" is the right word if you get the same results no matter what you enter.

I've always suspected, you know...
It's my secret shame; I've never been redneck enough. {Hangs head.}

DataPacRat
03-31-2011, 08:35 AM
I don't think "random" is the right word if you get the same results no matter what you enter.

I've just did a bit of checking, and as best as I can tell, each question moves you in one direction or another on one of two axes: economically left/right, and socially conservative/liberal. I just ran through the questionnaire and picked the most right/conservative answers, and my result put me in the same direction as the conservatives, but even further from centre. I tried leaving the economic questions right-ish, and changing all my social questions to socially liberal, and my result changed to the top-right quadrant, pretty far away from /all/ parties (but closest to the Cons).

If you want a cheatsheet, here are the questions, which axis they measure, and the answer that makes you economically right or socially conservative. Have fun skewing the poll to whatever result you see fit.

1S Pull troops out of Afghanistan: strongly disagree
2S Increase military presence in arctic: strongly agree
3E spend on military: much more
4E gov spending makes economy worse: strongly agree
5E reduce fed budget: strongly agree
6E seek closer economy with US: strongly agree
7S damage caused by tar sands exaggerated: strongly agree
8E carbon tax: strongly disagree
9E stricter environmental regulation: strongly disagree
10E private health care: much more
11E gov fund daycare: strongly disagree
12E easier EI: strongly disagree
13S immigrants must speak Eng or Fre: strongly agree
14S new immigrants: many fewer
15S accomodate religious minorities: much less
16S young offenders sentenced as adults: strongly agree
17S scrap long gun registry: strongly agree
18S marijuana should be crime: strongly agree
19S easier abortions: strongly disagree
20S marriage only man/woman: strongly agree
21S assisted suicide: strongly disagree
22S abolish senate: strongly disagree
23E no gov funding for parties: strongly agree
24S only bilinguals in supreme court: strongly disagree
25S feds have say in Quebec culture: strongly agree
26S Quebec constitutionally recognized as nation: strongly disagree
27S independent Quebec: strongly agree
28E contribute more to pensions: strongly disagree
29E wealthy pay taxes: much less
30E corporations pay taxes: much less

Leaffan
03-31-2011, 09:03 AM
Those answers are so far to the right that there's probably no voter in all of Canada who would answer every one like this: not even in Alberta! Even if you moderately agree or disagree to some of these it places you in the Liberal camp. Hell I even apparently ended up in the NDP camp on some.

So, it told me I too was a Liberal. And in some areas I suppose I am, for instance marijuana, abortion, same sex marriage, immigration, support of religious minorities.

I'm conservative in my views on the armed forces, the economy and the environment though.


How the hell are these conservative opinions?:

4E gov spending makes economy worse: strongly agree
22S abolish senate: strongly disagree

I'm pretty sure stimulus spending and senate abolition were/are supported by the Conservative party.

Baffle
03-31-2011, 09:27 AM
I'm pretty sure stimulus spending and senate abolition were/are supported by the Conservative party.

Yes on the former, but on the latter, the Conservative party supported Senate reform (an elected Senate in particular) and not Senate abolition.

the Lady
03-31-2011, 09:41 AM
I broke it. Wouldn't give me the answer at all.

Muffin
03-31-2011, 09:48 AM
I broke it. Wouldn't give me the answer at all.
Anarchist!

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-31-2011, 10:10 AM
How the hell are these conservative opinions?:

4E gov spending makes economy worse: strongly agree
22S abolish senate: strongly disagree

I'm pretty sure stimulus spending and senate abolition were/are supported by the Conservative party.

I would say that the stimulus spending was not in the original budget of 2008 and was put in place as a compromise with the opposition parties. As a rule of thumb, conservatives tend to believe that tax money that remains in the pocket of the original earner is a better contribution to the economy than any Government-based program that re-distributes wealth. Hence the corporate tax relief in the last budget that was tabled was viewed by the Conservatives as an appropriate 'stimulus' to the economy. (I hope I have put that fairly - it is not a point of view that I share, and so I'm trying to describe it without censuring it through my own bias.)

As to senate reform vs. senate abolition, that's a tough one. Reform famously campaigned for a triple 'E' senate - elected, effective and equal. They advocated reform rather than abolition. The NDP has advocated abolition. Perhaps those are the roots of that question and its skew.

Ultimately, though, aren't we talking about a toy on a media website? Did this vote compass ever claim to have more statistical rigour than a Cosmo quiz, or a 'what kind of cocktail are you?' question on FaceBook games. I haven't participated - I've been making up my own mind on issues (for better or for worse) since I was out of elementary school.

Leaffan
03-31-2011, 10:14 AM
...

Ultimately, though, aren't we talking about a toy on a media website? Did this vote compass ever claim to have more statistical rigour than a Cosmo quiz, or a 'what kind of cocktail are you?' question on FaceBook games. I haven't participated - I've been making up my own mind on issues (for better or for worse) since I was out of elementary school.

Well, sure. I don't anyone would take this quiz seriously. :confused:

kushiel
03-31-2011, 10:43 AM
In America: Upset that a black man who lived in Indonesia and has Kenyan ancestry becomes President.

In Canada: Upset that white American is running for Prime Minister. Would prefer black Kenyan.

Muffin
03-31-2011, 11:17 AM
In America: Upset that a black man who lived in Indonesia and has Kenyan ancestry becomes President.

In Canada: Upset that white American is running for Prime Minister. Would prefer black Kenyan.

Until recently, a black Harian refugee was our Viceroy / Governor General -- and a darn good one at that.

Leaffan
03-31-2011, 11:19 AM
^ Psssst....

Muffin
03-31-2011, 11:34 AM
rrrrrrrrrtrrrrrrrrrrr

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
03-31-2011, 03:44 PM
Well, sure. I don't anyone would take this quiz seriously. :confused:

I beg your pardon - I have been having a long conversation with a FaceBook friend who is a staunch Alberta Conservative, who does take this quiz seriously. Painfully seriously. He and his friends are up in arms about how the Vote Compass reveals the deep seated bias at the CBC and how it is part of a plot to trick Conservative thinkers into voting Liberal. They ranting about how every member of the Conservative party has a right to be royally pissed off, and the CBC should be defunded right this second. In the heat of posting in two different places, I was speaking to you as if you had said some of the things that Chris had been saying.

I apologize for the tone of my remarks in that post. That was a bit offside.

Dread Pirate Jimbo
03-31-2011, 03:50 PM
Well, sure. I don't anyone would take this quiz seriously. :confused:

I don't think you're considering the inescapable fact that a lot of people are stupid and lazy -- a five minute quiz to inform you of who to vote for is a perfect solution for people on the fence about the upcoming election who don't want to do crazy things like looking into the issues and the platforms of the various parties.

FTR, although I consider myself very much a fiscal conservative and somewhat of a social liberal, the quiz put me almost dead centre of the graph, much, much closer to the Liberals than the Conservatives, which is ludicrous.

the Lady
03-31-2011, 05:20 PM
What the Dread Pirate said. That was my first thought when I read about the whole schmozz.

borschevsky
03-31-2011, 05:48 PM
Elizabeth May should be in the debates.

I'm assuming that the Green party will field at least 300 candidates again, almost a complete slate. Almost a million Canadians voted Green last time. That not chicken shit.

What is chickenshit is that I and most Canadians have to waste my time listening to Duceppe whose party I can't vote for even if I wanted to. His party fields around 25 % of the candidates that the Green party does.

It just isn't right.I agree that the Green Party should be included in the debates, although there is a certain kind of irony or symmetry to excluding them. 7% of the vote is worth 0% of the seats, so it's worth 0% of the debate spots too :).

I have to disagree about Duceppe though. I find it hilarious to have him up there carefree and mouthing off a bit while all the other leaders are being so careful.

Cat Whisperer
04-01-2011, 01:53 PM
I've been giving the whole Vote Compass quiz defaulting to Liberal, and I've come to the conclusion that it isn't cool. For one thing, it gives the impression that voting anything except Liberal means you're an extremist nutjob, and for another, it hasn't encapsulated the parties it's supposed to be describing very well at all. Bad job, CBC. Bad, sloppy job, unless you're trying to subtly influence voting, in which case, well, bad sloppy job for getting caught at it.

ThePylon
04-01-2011, 02:19 PM
The Calgary Herald seems to disagree:

http://www.calgaryherald.com/story_print.html?id=4540372&sponsor=curriebarracks

I disagree, too - In my opinion, a lot of Canadians vote with more emotion than logic. I'd be willing to bet a lot of Progressive Conservatives would find themselves closer to the Liberal Party on any objective scale than the Conservatve Party as it stands now. I just tried to fill it in as closely as the average conservative in my riding (suburbs of Ottawa) would, and I landed almost exactly on the Conservative logo on the chart. I didn't think I cam across as an extremist nutjob at all, but did express absolute opinions on themes such as national security and fiscal policy.

ThePylon
04-01-2011, 02:23 PM
Also - the CBC vetted every position in this with representatives from every party... (cite: http://federal.votecompass.ca/faq/) I'm not sure how much more transparant they could have been. After filling it in, take a minute to review the answers versus their weighting - it is actually pretty well done.

Cat Whisperer
04-01-2011, 03:45 PM
The Calgary Herald seems to disagree:

http://www.calgaryherald.com/story_print.html?id=4540372&sponsor=curriebarracks

I disagree, too - In my opinion, a lot of Canadians vote with more emotion than logic. I'd be willing to bet a lot of Progressive Conservatives would find themselves closer to the Liberal Party on any objective scale than the Conservatve Party as it stands now. I just tried to fill it in as closely as the average conservative in my riding (suburbs of Ottawa) would, and I landed almost exactly on the Conservative logo on the chart. I didn't think I cam across as an extremist nutjob at all, but did express absolute opinions on themes such as national security and fiscal policy.
From the quoted link (I'm not sure it's an article - I wasn't able to find the byline - it reads more like an editorial) - Brock's flawed analysis was, of course, cited by the usual cabal of CBC bashers as proof of the Crown corporation's Liberal bias.Not exactly an unbiased, fact-based piece. :)

the Lady
04-01-2011, 03:55 PM
It is an editorial. Read it this morning in the actual paper. Growled a titch. But then again, I'm one of those nasty conservatives.

Frank
04-01-2011, 08:14 PM
For what it's worth -- I took the compass test as a resident of the riding I lived in when I was in Ottawa, and despite the checkmark being closest to the NDP (which is likely where my federal vote would go), it showed me as Liberal.

RickJay
04-01-2011, 09:51 PM
How does Question 20 inform what party you should vote for?

The question is "Marriage should only be between a man and a woman," e.g. "do you oppose gay marriage?" But no major political party opposes gay marriage. If you don't believe me, look it up; no party has any plan to make a change to the law as it stands.

That question can't intelligently inform your vote at all. Why's it there?

That's one of about 1,000 problems with the quiz. I don't know if it's biased, but it's pretty goddamned stupid.

Unsurprisingly, the test put me down as a Liberal, though I wouldn't vote for a party led by Michael Ignatieff in a million years.

kushiel
04-01-2011, 09:56 PM
Meanwhile, Elizabeth May proposes high-speed rail between Saskatoon and Regina. (http://www.thestarphoenix.com/High+speed+train+between+Saskatoon+Regina+suggested+Green+Party/4545358/story.html)

Because if the States can't push high speed rail for NYC-Washington, we can surely get it for Saskatchewan! This is why we can't have nice things.

ThePylon
04-01-2011, 10:29 PM
How does Question 20 inform what party you should vote for?

The question is "Marriage should only be between a man and a woman," e.g. "do you oppose gay marriage?" But no major political party opposes gay marriage. If you don't believe me, look it up; no party has any plan to make a change to the law as it stands.

That question can't intelligently inform your vote at all. Why's it there?

That's one of about 1,000 problems with the quiz. I don't know if it's biased, but it's pretty goddamned stupid.

Unsurprisingly, the test put me down as a Liberal, though I wouldn't vote for a party led by Michael Ignatieff in a million years.

I agree that one seems extreme - I went through the analysis, and it claims that the Conservative policy:

"The Conservative Party believes that Parliament, through a free vote, and not the courts should determine the definition of marriage. The Conservative Party supports the freedom of religious organizations to determine their own practices with respect to marriage.

A Conservative Government will support legislation defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman."

The tool seems to determine that to mean that a conservative position is agree.

Max the Immortal
04-01-2011, 11:42 PM
The biggest problem with the vote compass is, well, the compass. It's an interesting widget for comparing your own opinions to those of the parties, but that's not what anyone's talking about. It's all "It said I'm a Liberal! No way in hell that that's accurate!" usually without any details of why they got that assessment. Is it a flaw in how the questions are weighted? Did extreme but opposite answers average out to a moderate position (as was the case for me on the social axis)? Or are some people just unwilling to accept that they agree with a party they dislike more than they assumed?

It would have been better to, instead of a compass, format it as a "blind taste test", where you answer blindly and are then simply shown how your answers compare to the parties. You can still use the widget that way, but everyone's gotten distracted by the colourful compass next to the interesting part.

Cat Whisperer
04-02-2011, 12:45 AM
<snip>

It would have been better to, instead of a compass, format it as a "blind taste test", where you answer blindly and are then simply shown how your answers compare to the parties. You can still use the widget that way, but everyone's gotten distracted by the colourful compass next to the interesting part.
I don't see how that would be better; I don't see it as CBC's job to tell any undecided voters that they're actually Liberals, which is basically what this Compass is doing (and what any "blind taste test" that is biased the same way would do).

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 06:22 AM
How does Question 20 inform what party you should vote for?

The question is "Marriage should only be between a man and a woman," e.g. "do you oppose gay marriage?" But no major political party opposes gay marriage. If you don't believe me, look it up; no party has any plan to make a change to the law as it stands.

That question can't intelligently inform your vote at all. Why's it there?

That's one of about 1,000 problems with the quiz. I don't know if it's biased, but it's pretty goddamned stupid.

Unsurprisingly, the test put me down as a Liberal, though I wouldn't vote for a party led by Michael Ignatieff in a million years.

I am assuming that the question is marking you on a degree of social conservatism. You are quite right - none of the parties has an official platform point that indicates any desire to change anything about gay marriage. Prime Minister Stephen Harper's opposition to same-sex marriage is a matter of record, but since the second vote on it in Dec. 2006 he has stated that he doesn't see reopening it in the future.

That aside, the people who support the abolition of same-sex marriage tend to support the Conservative party. Partly because of that support, and partly because Prime Minister Stephen Harper has broken his word on many other issues (he stacked the senate even though he said he wouldn't, he later used the senate majority to kill bill C-311, which had been approved by the House of Commons, he promised transparency and then was not transparent, etc., etc.) there is a lot of mistrust on the left of what socially conservative policy he will pursue if ever given a majority. I believe the mistrust is entirely justified.

And I repeat what I said earlier to Leaffan - I don't take this thing any more seriously than I take a Cosmo or a FaceBook quiz. Will this influence anybody's vote any more than a Conservative attack ad that uses a Fox news approach to facts? I've had heated discussions in the dog park with Toronto Sun readers who seem to think that Michael Ignatieff's ancestors were Russian Counts who came to Canada in silk shirts with chests full of gold coins. And the proof of this assertion? I've never seen it. Has anybody?

elbows
04-02-2011, 09:55 AM
he doesn't see reopening it in the future

It seems the height of naivety, to believe this means anything.

I think, with a majority government, everything would be back on the table. I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority.

Plus he's prorogued the government twice, and was found in contempt of parliament.

I'm sorry, that's too much for me. All of Canada should be afraid of a Conservative Majority Government.

Northern Piper
04-02-2011, 11:29 AM
I've had heated discussions in the dog park with Toronto Sun readers who seem to think that Michael Ignatieff's ancestors were Russian Counts who came to Canada in silk shirts with chests full of gold coins. And the proof of this assertion? I've never seen it. Has anybody?

Definitely Russian Counts, but they fled the Bolshies with the shirts on their backs (dunno if they were silk or not).

Iggy's great granddad was Count Nikolay Pavlovich Ignatyev (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nikolay_Pavlovich_Ignatyev). The family was a close supporter of the Tsar:Nikolay Ignatyev was born in St Petersburg to Maria Ivanovna Maltsova and Captain Pavel Nikolayevich Ignatyev. His father had been taken into favour by Tsar Nicholas I, owing to his fidelity on the occasion of the Decembrist revolt in 1825, and Grand Duke Alexander (later Tsar Alexander II) stood sponsor at the boy's baptism. After graduating from the Corps of Pages, at the age of seventeen he became an officer of the Russian Guards. He was appointed military attaché in London in charge of intelligence but was expelled by Britain after a failed operation.

He served in various diplomatic posts.

Iggy's granddad was Count Pavel Nikolayevich Ignatiev (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pavel_Ignatiev). He was the last Tsarist Minister of Education:

In 1915, during the First World War he was appointed Minister of Education. He held that position until 1916.

As a result of the Bolshevik Revolution, Ignatieff and his family fled to France. In 1925, the family emigrated to Canada, and settled permanently three years later in Upper Melbourne in Quebec where he died August 12, 1945.

Iggy's dad, George Ignatieff (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Ignatieff), took up the family business and served as a diplomat for Canada:

Ignatieff was born in Saint Petersburg, Russian Empire, the youngest of five sons, to a distinguished Russian family. His mother was Princess Natalia Nikolayevna Meshcherskaya and his father was Count Paul Ignatieff, a close advisor to Tsar Nicholas II serving as his last Minister of Education. In 1918, the year after the Russian Revolution, Count Ignatieff was imprisoned, but his release was negotiated by sympathetic supporters. The family fled to France, and later moved to Canada. George Ignatieff was educated at St Paul's School, London, Lower Canada College, and the University of Trinity College,University of Toronto, before being awarded a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford.
...
With the advent of war, Ignatieff joined the Royal Artillery, where he worked in photographic intelligence. In 1940 he joined the Canadian Department of External Affairs. He became personal assistant to the Canadian High Commissioner in London, Vincent Massey,[1] and during his London posting began a friendship with Lester Pearson, later Prime Minister of Canada. Ignatieff also served as the wartime Canadian delegate to the International Red Cross.[2]
Ignatieff was a key figure in Canadian diplomacy and international relations through the postwar period. He was Ambassador to Yugoslavia (1956-1958), permanent representative to NATO (1963-1966), Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations (1966-1969) and president of the United Nations Security Council (1968-1969). In 1984 Ignatieff was appointed Ambassador for Disarmament by Prime Minister John Turner.

Cat Whisperer
04-02-2011, 12:33 PM
<snip> Partly because of that support, and partly because Prime Minister Stephen Harper has broken his word on many other issues (he stacked the senate even though he said he wouldn't<snip>
Again, we get into perceptions. I see that as a smart political move, because for him to not make senate appointments when he had the chance, knowing that there was no way at the time to abolish or reform the senate like we need, would have been stupid. We're not holding politicians to their election promises now, are we? I recall a certain PM Chrétien who bald-facedly lied about repealing the GST.
It seems the height of naivety, to believe this means anything.

I think, with a majority government, everything would be back on the table. I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority.

Plus he's prorogued the government twice, and was found in contempt of parliament.

I'm sorry, that's too much for me. All of Canada should be afraid of a Conservative Majority Government.Well, I don't think any of those things, and I'm not scared - which of us is right?

Definitely Russian Counts, but they fled the Bolshies with the shirts on their backs (dunno if they were silk or not).<snip>
AH HA! That explains why I expect him to turn into a bat and flap off into the night at the end of each speech! :D

Max the Immortal
04-02-2011, 01:30 PM
I don't see how that would be better; I don't see it as CBC's job to tell any undecided voters that they're actually Liberals, which is basically what this Compass is doing (and what any "blind taste test" that is biased the same way would do).

The compass apparently interprets two extreme left and two extreme right answers as equal to four centrist answers. That's silly, and it wouldn't happen if the quiz didn't attempt to compile one's answers on a compass. Plus, I don't remember the compass having much in the way of options for weighting the questions; you can only toggle categories on or off. If you only kind of care about day care but really care about the Afghanistan mission, the compass will be a lot less useful to you than a simple readout of where the parties stand on day care compared to your own answer along with a similar readout for Afghanistan.

The "blind taste test" aspect could be useful in dispelling misconceptions people hold about parties. Suppose somebody mistakenly thinks that the Liberals want to pull our troops out of Afghanistan ASAP. Then he takes the quiz and answers "strongly disagree" on the troop withdrawal question. The quiz then tells him "The Conservatives and the Liberals agree with you on this issue, while the NDP and the Green Party disagree with you.". That could help him make a more informed decision without him feeling like he's been told how to vote. It would be especially useful for lower profile issues; how many people know off the top of their head where each of the parties stands on the prospect of adopting a carbon tax?

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 02:42 PM
Definitely Russian Counts, but they fled the Bolshies with the shirts on their backs (dunno if they were silk or not).

Your pardon, I should have been clearer. The Russian Counts, I do not dispute - that's established history. It's the idea that they came to Canada with a lot of wealth, and that Michael Ignatieff has played up (or made up) their poverty that irritates me.

Cat Whisperer
04-02-2011, 02:48 PM
<snip>

The "blind taste test" aspect could be useful in dispelling misconceptions people hold about parties. Suppose somebody mistakenly thinks that the Liberals want to pull our troops out of Afghanistan ASAP. Then he takes the quiz and answers "strongly disagree" on the troop withdrawal question. The quiz then tells him "The Conservatives and the Liberals agree with you on this issue, while the NDP and the Green Party disagree with you.". That could help him make a more informed decision without him feeling like he's been told how to vote. It would be especially useful for lower profile issues; how many people know off the top of their head where each of the parties stands on the prospect of adopting a carbon tax?Ah, I see what you're saying. Yes, that would probably be more useful.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 02:56 PM
Again, we get into perceptions. I see that as a smart political move, because for him to not make senate appointments when he had the chance, knowing that there was no way at the time to abolish or reform the senate like we need, would have been stupid. We're not holding politicians to their election promises now, are we?

You are right about perceptions. I hold it against Prime Minister Harper that I have heard since 1997 that he is the White Knight to bring order, dignity and transparency to the House of Commons and in actual practice, it has been at least as dirty as it always was. In my opinion, it has been much worse.

Yes, I have always held politicians to their election promises, and will continue to do so.

I recall a certain PM Chrétien who bald-facedly lied about repealing the GST.


The $64,000. question is - do you respect him for it? Would it allow you to trust him in the future?

In my opinion, PM Stephen Harper is someone who has earned neither my trust nor my respect. So much so that I'm genuinely surprised when I hear other people say they trust him more than Michael Ignatieff.

Leaffan
04-02-2011, 05:59 PM
It seems the height of naivety, to believe this means anything.

I think, with a majority government, everything would be back on the table. I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority.

Plus he's prorogued the government twice, and was found in contempt of parliament.

I'm sorry, that's too much for me. All of Canada should be afraid of a Conservative Majority Government.

You're wrong in your thinking. Brainwashed by the CBC perhaps.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 06:43 PM
You're wrong in your thinking. Brainwashed by the CBC perhaps.

I'm very sorry, Leaffan, I am with elbows on this one. I will not call you 'brainwashed' - you have your own beliefs and your own reasons for believing them. I can only repeat what I've said before - if Prime Minister Harper had wanted to earn my trust, it would have started with a more conciliatory approach to a minority parliament. His intransigence just indicates to me that he feels that he is right and the rest of the legitimately elected MPs of the opposition parties are wrong. That conviction leads him to use every trick in the book to get his way.

If you are right, Prime Minister, why can you not convince your opposition? Why does the word 'compromise' seem to be completely missing from your vocabulary?

I would gladly say this to Stephen Harper's face as respectfully as I have just put it here, save for the fact that I can't get within a mile of him in this campaign. Even the press, who are there to ask the hard questions on my behalf, are restricted to 5 questions a day, and kept behind the barrier.

It is not voodoo, it is not the CBC's magic cheese touch of doom that has restricted him to a minority government in the last two elections - it is the fact that he has done nothing which has changed the minds of those who oppose him.

Leaffan
04-02-2011, 07:16 PM
What I was responding to was this "I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority." No he wouldn't and there's no way in hell any politician in Canada will ever touch this issue with a ten foot pole. It ain't gonna happen. Believe it or not, even the vast majority of Conservative supporters would not want this; yours truly included.

The fact that anyone would even suggest that the Harper Conservatives think this way suggests to me a sort of media brainwashing; it really does amount to that.

You want to talk non-conciliatory prime ministers? Chretien and Trudeau were arrogant pricks, really.

The fact that the Conservatives have only managed to eek out a minority in the last couple of elections is hugely due to the Liberaly biased media in our country. Look at the bias of the Toronto Star, and look at who wins in the 416 area code; there's a direct correlation here. The CBC is practically campaigning for the Liberals!

Harper is an intelligent conservative and given a majority could possibly be the best prime minister we've had in my life time.

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 08:00 PM
What I was responding to was this "I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority." No he wouldn't and there's no way in hell any politician in Canada will ever touch this issue with a ten foot pole. It ain't gonna happen. Believe it or not, even the vast majority of Conservative supporters would not want this; yours truly included.

The fact that anyone would even suggest that the Harper Conservatives think this way suggests to me a sort of media brainwashing; it really does amount to that.

You want to talk non-conciliatory prime ministers? Chretien and Trudeau were arrogant pricks, really.

The fact that the Conservatives have only managed to eek out a minority in the last couple of elections is hugely due to the Liberaly biased media in our country. Look at the bias of the Toronto Star, and look at who wins in the 416 area code; there's a direct correlation here. The CBC is practically campaigning for the Liberals!

Harper is an intelligent conservative and given a majority could possibly be the best prime minister we've had in my life time.

Have you ever considered the possibility that there is no Liberal bias whatsoever in the media, it's just that you're wrong in your opinions?

I only ask because Mike Duffy, senator and Peter Kent, MP would seem to indicate that there have been at least some conservative fifth columnists in the 'left-biased media' for a few years. Is it just that the conspiracy is too inefficient to weed them out?

Le Ministre de l'au-delà
04-02-2011, 08:05 PM
Or if you like, look at the bias of the Alberta based papers and look who wins - there's a direct correlation here. The Calgary Herald is practically campaigning for the Conservatives!

Leaffan
04-02-2011, 09:17 PM
Or if you like, look at the bias of the Alberta based papers and look who wins - there's a direct correlation here. The Calgary Herald is practically campaigning for the Conservatives!

Exactly true. Exactly!

Except the CBC is supported by my tax dollars, and they are indeed biased. The Herald and Star can do what they want, but why should our nationally supported news network be supporting the Liberals. And yes, they are and always have.

Leaffan
04-02-2011, 09:29 PM
Didn't see it myself, but I heard on the radio that just after the election was called the CBC profiled the leaders and had Harper as having worked for Imperial Oil, which he did briefly as a 20-something year old. No other mention of any of his other credentials. No mention of his masters degree: nothing. And then went on to profile Iggy and Jack with glowing highlights of their academic and political accomplishments.

I can't wait for Sun TV to come on air. This is bullshit, left-wing biased crap. If you can't see it, you're blind.

Of course I say all of this in the most respectful manner. :D:D


(Honestly I don't want this to become a personal battle. I like and respect your comments.)

Dread Pirate Jimbo
04-03-2011, 01:33 AM
Didn't see it myself, but I heard on the radio that just after the election was called the CBC profiled the leaders and had Harper as having worked for Imperial Oil, which he did briefly as a 20-something year old. No other mention of any of his other credentials. No mention of his masters degree: nothing. And then went on to profile Iggy and Jack with glowing highlights of their academic and political accomplishments.

I can't wait for Sun TV to come on air. This is bullshit, left-wing biased crap. If you can't see it, you're blind.

Of course I say all of this in the most respectful manner. :D:D


(Honestly I don't want this to become a personal battle. I like and respect your comments.)

Are you referring to Harper's masters degree in economics? Well, I can certainly see where having an economist running things during a time of economic crisis would be a terrible idea! :smack:

the Lady
04-03-2011, 08:24 AM
Or if you like, look at the bias of the Alberta based papers and look who wins - there's a direct correlation here. The Calgary Herald is practically campaigning for the Conservatives!

Except that they're not. Now, the Calgary Sun...you might have a case there.

Cat Whisperer
04-03-2011, 01:37 PM
Are you referring to Harper's masters degree in economics? Well, I can certainly see where having an economist running things during a time of economic crisis would be a terrible idea! :smack:
No, we need a doctor of history (http://www.contemporarywriters.com/authors/?p=auth141) to lead us through these complicated economic times. :)

(In all fairness, Ignatieff does sound like a very intelligent, impressive scholar. PM Harper, however, has been working in Canadian politics since 1981.)

Rysto
04-03-2011, 03:09 PM
Are you referring to Harper's masters degree in economics? Well, I can certainly see where having an economist running things during a time of economic crisis would be a terrible idea! :smack:
The degree doesn't do him any good as, like I said earlier in the thread, Harper the politician trumps Harper the economist 999 out of 1000.

Cat Whisperer
04-03-2011, 03:24 PM
The degree doesn't do him any good as, like I said earlier in the thread, Harper the politician trumps Harper the economist 999 out of 1000.
I don't see how it wouldn't do him *any* good - he is educated in economics, and understands the principles and policies, and he brings that to every decision he makes - it's not like he just forgets everything he ever learned about economics while figuring out policy. I also don't see what's such a terrible thing about Harper the Politician - with 30 years experience in Canadian politics to Ignatieff's five (since he was parachuted into high-level Canadian politics in 2006).

RickJay
04-03-2011, 05:09 PM
I think, with a majority government, everything would be back on the table. I think he'd rescind the abortion laws too, given a majority.
If the Conservatives win a majority I will bet you one hundred thousand dollars that you're wrong.

Of course, we already know you're wrong in the sense that Canada does not have any abortion laws at all, and you can't rescind something that does not exist. But I assume what you meant is that Harper, given a majority government, would make abortion illegal, in which case my challenge of a $100,000 bet stands.

ETA: Everyone knows Stephen Harper's official title and styling is not "Prime Minister," right? I think we all know what his job is.

Frank
04-03-2011, 05:53 PM
ETA: Everyone knows Stephen Harper's official title and styling is not "Prime Minister," right?
Prime Minister (in direct address)

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada (as a written address)

The Right Honourable Member for Calgary Southwest (during Question Period)
alternatively,
The Right Honourable Prime Minister (during Question Period)

The Right Honourable Premier (pre WWI)