Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Memory Lane 3

November 18th:

The less partisan throne speech comes with promises of a more civil Parliament, following the Oct. 14 federal election.

Although pledges to cool down the parliamentary rancour have been made in the past, some are suggesting moves to address the economic downturn could achieve those goals.

"There seems to be a consensus that we want to be very serious in how we approach everything that flows from the economic instability facing our nation and indeed facing the planet right now," said Jay Hill, the new Conservative House leader, who took over the position from Peter Van Loan.

"On our team's part, we certainly want to see a new tone. We intend to do what we can," said Hill.

"We strayed from [civility] towards the end of the last Parliament, to the detriment of all political parties."


The political showdown in Ottawa reached a fever pitch in Parliament Tuesday as Prime Minister Stephen Harper accused his foes of "betraying" voters while the opposition said the Tories have been misleading the country with doublespeak.

During a fiery question period session, where MPs hurled accusations and openly shouted at each other across the benches, Harper said that the Liberals, NDP and Bloc Quebecois want to "scrap" the results of the last election.

Harper also accused Dion of trying to use "parliamentary niceties" to grab power and become prime minister.

"If you want to be prime minister, you get your mandate from the Canadian people, not from the separatists," he said.



  • Yes, those were the years. Our hearts were young and free. But its been years . . . oh wait, you meant two weeks ago.

    never mind.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:32 p.m.  

  • I will do you one better - November 27th:


    "As his government prepares to table a critical fiscal update today, Stephen Harper is looking as though he has come into his prime.

    The PM, fresh from a second election win last month, has been confronting the challenge of a Canadian recession and looming deficits with a surprising air of maturity and confidence.

    The new image is in sharp contrast to Harper's past political demeanour, widely criticized as petty, nasty and excessively partisan."

    By Blogger french wedding cat, at 8:50 p.m.  

  • The media have noted that there were some Conservatives who did not give Harper a standing ovation when nearly all other Conservative MPs were on their feet. Needless to say, there are serious discussions going on for Conservative endorsements from outside the Conservative caucus and for floor crossings from the Conservative caucus. Dion is trying to transform this into a "Grand Coalition" of all parties as a legacy he wants to leave behind. Watch on Monday for the floor crossings.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:15 p.m.  

  • Watch on Friday for the prorogation.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:30 p.m.  

  • floor crossings?

    Daveberta and Andrew Steele at the G&M have also said Tories joining the coalition would be a good thing.

    Anybody remember the outrage over David Emerson? Apparently not.

    I find it amazing that the same Liberals who expressed such outrage about one of their one joining a Tory government can seriously propose not just one, but several, Tories crossing, not just to the Liberals, but to a Liberal-NDP coalition that has the most formal support from the Bloc that we've seen yet.

    Do you people have no capacity at all to put yourselves in the shoes of others? How can you be outraged about Emerson and yet not think that those that elected a Tory in their riding would be even more outraged?

    The fact that I've seen so many apparently centrist coalition supporters express hopes for Tory floor crossings IN THE AGE OF EMERSON suggests to me that these people are not comfortable with the democratic legitimacy of this coalition, such that some questionable means would serve larger ends.

    By Blogger Brian Dell, at 9:59 p.m.  

  • Maybe Michael Chong in Cabinet?

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 10:00 p.m.  

  • Oh, and I still think Bill Casey would be a good addition and is probably a more realistic catch.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 10:01 p.m.  

  • You dont have the votes any more, so stop dreaming and help Dion pack.

    Dream another dream this dream is over.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:14 p.m.  

  • CG

    Something changed.
    Steve regained his sea legs.
    Stephane lost his.
    Steve's big blue machine is rolling and face it, it has the resources...all the way from scripting the trained seals to clap (WHEN PROMPTED), to the blogs and the rallies in front of the GG house.
    Someone is going to have to rescue this coalition.
    I believe the coalition is the right and certainly legal/ constitutional path BUT look out...
    Anyone see the RMR tonight?
    Getting Rick's Rant out there would be invaluable. Get on that all you technophiles but as well a house and backroom strategy is essential (I didn't see it in the house today)

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:18 p.m.  

  • The long term anger that is festering towards the coalition will mean no liberals west of Thunder Bay for 20 years.

    Anita Neville is the lone hold out in MB, Goodale in SK, none in AB and Dosanjh hanging by a thread in BC...

    You cant govern like this. Not now, not ever. Blow yourselves up and start over.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:31 p.m.  

  • Context is everything.

    Oh, and have your coalition. Next election, it will be a wipe out.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:31 p.m.  

  • I wonder what all the one canada libs on the Island of Montreal think of this.

    Sold out after so many years of loyalty...

    I guess Dion can always find new, loyal friends with the keys to the Quebec Red Machine that Charest holds right now.

    You dont really need Charest, just sell him out to Marois and Parizeau...Oh shit forgot about him eh? He'll have a few demands for you, a billion here a billion there, it'll never be enough you stupid fucks...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:37 p.m.  

  • I agree this could be the total Western death of the LPC -- I think it's technically legal, constitutionally. But in the long run, it would be to the Liberals' very serious detriment, in my opinion.

    By Blogger Jacques Beau Vert, at 10:37 p.m.  

  • If the Tory PR machine is successful, a new coalition government would be starting day 1 at an especially low favourability rating. GW Bush actually moderated quite a bit during his 2nd term but once it became uncool to support him there was no arresting the slide in his unpopularity.

    The Tories put out the fiscal update they did because they know the polling. Canadians simply do not tolerate deliberate deficit spending. Harper talked up the idea of educating Canadians on the occasional need for deficits before the update, but after reviewing that trial balloon decided that the political cost of running a significant deficit would be too great. Better to at least get the opposition to take some responsibility for deficit, by arguing that it was forced upon them.

    Liberals who think Harper is finished are kidding themselves. He'll be a martyr to his base, if not to the editorial boards.

    By Blogger Brian Dell, at 10:40 p.m.  

  • "Do you people have no capacity at all to put yourselves in the shoes of others? How can you be outraged about Emerson and yet not think that those that elected a Tory in their riding would be even more outraged?"

    Because Harper made it a huge point, repeatedly, to claim he'd not do such things.

    By Blogger Mark Richard Francis, at 10:52 p.m.  

  • Too funny! Jay Hill also told CBC's, The House, that “Canadians are really looking towards this Parliament as one that they hope will be productive, as opposed to these showdowns at noon with the high drama and brinkmanship.”

    Irony is alive and well in Canadian politics.

    By Blogger Partisan Hobo, at 10:54 p.m.  

  • ""Do you people have no capacity at all to put yourselves in the shoes of others? How can you be outraged about Emerson and yet not think that those that elected a Tory in their riding would be even more outraged?"

    Because Harper made it a huge point, repeatedly, to claim he'd not do such things."

    Especially after being so annoyed about the Liberals stealing Belinda Stronach in the previous Parliament...

    I think being outraged at floor-crossings and at working with the BQ is just a tactic that both sides use when it's in their interests to do so. It'd be nice if we could all be a bit more grown-up about those two issues, as well as about the possibility of coalition governments. None of these things are particularly bad in and of themselves, although of course any political manoeuvre can have bad consequences.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:58 p.m.  

  • I'm not sure this will actually hurt the Liberals west of Thunder Bay...mainly since they don't have much there to lose and this is only going to anger Conservatives anyways.

    HOWEVER, it certainly won't help the party grow in the West, which it needs to do if the LPC wants to form a government in the traditional way. And in Alberta, it's going to get even tougher to be a Liberal.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 12:05 a.m.  

  • Over 50% of Canadians will not support this coalition, those are huge majority numbers for Harper.

    A huge spectacular failure. Usurpers, separatists and socialists be damned.

    Guess your math didnt quite add up. Sucks to be you.

    Say goodbye to Neville, and Goodale they are done. Toronto always forgets the rest of canada and Western Canada is rising. It is inevitably rising and it is conservative.

    We elect conservatives, and you are done out here. Done like dinner.

    Form coalitions with seperatists, confuse your vote with the socialists, make any excuse...You are done. No more liberals out west. No more door to door campaigning, bring a separatist and see how it goes...


    I cant stop laughing its so stupid but you guys did it. Congrats, flush the once proud Liberal party down the tubes.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:05 a.m.  

  • Sigh

    All those anons have me so demoralized. I did not know what to think until they came along...

    As for liberals in Alberta - I have lived here all my life. Sorry, but I just do not see this as making it worse - it cannot get any worse, nor is it going to get better so long as the reigning PM is from Alberta. The coalition will have nothing to do with it.

    We have had all kinds of reports in the Edmonton Journal about how the Harper government is totally ignoring us - and they still re-elect all but one of their MP's.

    By Blogger Gayle, at 2:22 a.m.  

  • You don't understand the depth of Steven Harper's political acumen.

    Harper has not made a single mistake in this whole episode. It's going exactly as he planned. Harper is orchestrating this whole thing like the second coming of Machiavelli. The suckers leading the other parties are taking the hook and jamming it down their own throats. Harper, the consummate control freak, has foreseen the opposition reaction and the public reaction to every move he’s made. He’s set it up so he can paint all the other parties as power-hungry losers, when that label fits his party equally well. He can’t lose. Either the coalition takes over and takes the blame for the coming economic crisis, or there’s an election that no average citizen wants that he can blame on all the other parties in the hope that he will finally get the majority he wants. He will then be able to govern through the bad times and (he hopes) back into the good with his hands firmly grasping the levers of power, allowing him to implement all the policies that will reward his corporate backers, and in the process further impoverish the already poverty-stricken and destroy the environment.

    You don't believe me? Think about it. First he draws them in with the bait of cutting the $1.95 per vote subsidy, knowing they can't accept it but must come up with a better excuse for a non-confidence motion. And they do - the very weak argument of failing to respond to the economic crisis with a "stimulus" when clearly that can't be rushed while the US is dithering under a lame duck and our economies are intertwined. (The ban of civil service strikes was just extra bait for the NDP.) Then he withdraws those original bait items, knowing the opposition can't back down without looking like the fools they seem to be. Then he delays the vote to give the opposition time to hang itself and him time to rally his supporters with distortions, half-truths and complete lies that we can clearly see now are working like a charm.

    The man's a political genius. Too bad he's an evil genius.

    By Blogger Curmudgeon-at-Large, at 2:26 a.m.  

  • "First he draws them in with the bait of cutting the $1.95 per vote subsidy."

    I was extremely surprised to find 2CPC/Harper supporters at work that didn't know about the subsidy, in addition to my parents (ardent CPC supporters). They were all quite pi$$ed about it.

    This may be an unexpected (or if Harper is as Machiavellian as you imply, expected) bonus of votes.

    "...the very weak argument of failing to respond to the economic crisis with a "stimulus" when clearly that can't be rushed while the US is dithering under a lame duck and our economies are intertwined..."

    Actually, it's weak because although our economies are intertwined, we are currently living in 2 different realities.

    How many Canadians are declaring bankruptcy due to medical bills per week?


    How many Canadians lay awake at night worrying about a medical emergency bankrupting them?


    How many Canadians stay in a job they hate because they can't risk changing jobs and losing medical coverage due to pre-existing conditions?


    How many quarters has the US GDP dropped?



    None yet.

    How many quarters has the US lost jobs (overall)?

    I believe it's 3 (official recession)

    In Canada?

    I believe it's still none.


    Quit watching US news and applying it to Canada, for crying out loud.

    At best, we need to match (proportionately) a bailout for the auto industry, which is already in play.


    You guys (commenters here and, to a lesser degree, CG), scare me because you pretend to be informed. Are you even paying attention to what is going on in your own country compared to the rest of the world?

    By Blogger Candace, at 3:09 a.m.  

  • screw the west, we'll take the rest.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:35 a.m.  

  • I wonder though, isn't part of the issue with that quote that Jay Hill is always the one who stands up and makes decent non-partisan noises? I expect every term Jay Hill stands up and says, let us love one another, and Van Doan, Flaherty and Harper sit together and plot out some grand scheme to humiliate the opposition. That is my impression, in any case. So, who knows, perhaps Hill is right now preparing a little speach down the line about how post coalition angry though Tories are we can still be civil.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:25 a.m.  

  • If I were a LPC supporter (some may surmise from my comments that I'm not), I would be furious that this coalition will demolish any hope of regaining votes in the West (for some pretty obvious reasons to political types).

    And kill any hopes of regaining votes in Quebec (after all, if I'm choosing between the Bloc and the Liberals, I'll choose the Bloc since the Liberals will adopt the Bloc policies anyway).

    And any ridings where the LPC and the NDP are competitive, support for the NDP is never a lost vote, since the Liberals would put the NDP into cabinet.

    How low can the Liberal vote go?

    By Blogger Paul, at 7:06 p.m.  

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