Politics In Canada

Turning my attention to my adopted country, what do I see?

The leaders of the three opposition parties presented their plan to topple Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s minority government at a press conference in Ottawa late Monday afternoon.

The leaders of the Liberal Party, the New Democratic Party and the Bloc Québécois publicly signed a coaltion accord and sent a letter to Governor-General Michaëlle Jean saying the opposition has lost confidence in the Conservatives.

The proposed coalition government between the Liberals and the New Democratic Party would last until June of 2011, but the Bloc is only pledging support for 18 months.

Under the plan, Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion would become prime minister until May, when his successor would take over.

Woah!!! Didn’t see that coming. Dion is finally going to be the Prime Minister. I had voted for the Liberal party in the last election and was hoping to see Dion as the Prime Minister of Canada. But there were reasons for me voting for the Liberals. The main motive was The Green Shift. The other was to bring in actual accountability into the government and I saw that in the leadership of Stephen Dion. Unfortunately, not many Canadians agreed with me as Liberals were routed in the election receiving only 77 seats in the house.

But days after the election, I was wondering why the hell is the opposition not banding together against Harper? And I ask again, why exactly could not NDP and the Liberals to band together a few weeks ago? Of course, the latest shit pile from the conservatives is what galvanised the opposition.

The Conservatives are poised to eliminate the public subsidies that Canada’s five major political parties receive, a move that would save $30 million a year but could cripple the opposition.

I don’t really like this new scenario. I mean, Harper’s governance was full of shit, no doubt about it. He called the oppositions’ bluff and they bit him right back. If the current government is bought down, he must resign immediately from the conservative party for this was a shameless act of consolidating his power without giving a thought to the problems of the common man.

I will, of course, support a coalition of the Liberals and NDP. But I would support it only if The Green Shift or it’s variant is included in the mix.

Updated :

Ha ha ha….yes, it’s only the opposition vying for power!!!! These conservatives are so full of BULLSHIT!!!

The prospect of the Prime Minister trying to shut down Parliament to avoid defeat has one constitutional scholar shaking in his boots.

Political scientist Peter Russell said Stephen Harper may have the right to ask Governor General Michaëlle Jean to prorogue Parliament and end the current session but doing so would set a dangerous and undemocratic precedent.

“Of all the things that have happened or have been threatened to be about to happen, this is the most dangerous because it shows the intention of the Prime Minister to govern without Parliament and that is undermining our parliamentary democracy,” said Russell, a University of Toronto professor emeritus.

So much for thinking of the common man. Let’s shut down the parliament and avoid all business until we are firmly in power in Jan. 2009!!!

Now I really want the NDP/Liberals/Bloc to be in power!!

Run A Respectable Campaign, And Pay For It


Liberal Party officials prepared a memo in 2006 warning their incoming new leader to prepare an immediate ad campaign to counter an expected assault from the governing Tories aimed at destabilizing whoever won.

However, Stéphane Dion opted instead to hang onto the bulk of a $4-million war chest he inherited upon taking over the top job, responding to a Tory ad blitz with a limited run of upbeat commercials.

When he announced his decision to step down as Liberal Leader on Monday, Mr. Dion said a Tory onslaught supplemented with substantial amounts of cash helped define him with the public and he never recovered.

So let me get this straight. The “esteemed” Liberal party of Canada wanted to run sleazy campaign ads against conservatives, Dion says no and Dion loses. I don’t understand this. I mean what does it say about us. That we respond to a politician by how much he/she can beat up the opponent in sleaziness? Is that what politics has come down to in Canada?

To be honest, I do not think this is the only reason why Liberals lost. Liberals lost because of lack of direction from Dion and the poor support that the party members gave Dion. Also, the party is moving away from being the party of the people to the party of business just like the conservatives : Maybe it always was the party of the business community but under Dion I thought that this party is very much the party of the people.

I think the party members still have not recoganised the fact that the loss was as theirs as much as it was Dion’s lack of “leadership”. To throw hacks like Michael Ignatieff (a torture supporter) and Bob Rae (his one term in office in Ontario is not fondly remembered) in the ring amongst others is basically saying let’s change the wheels of the car even though the engine’s shot. I know the party needs money right away but to go and pander to the businesses for money instead of rebuilding the party from ground up is disingenuous and insulting to the motto of the Liberal party. I fear that that Liberal party will, after Dion leaves, be competing with conservatives for business political dollars while ignoring the common folk.

The only reason why I was all for the Liberal party was Stephen Dion who showed time and time again to be a classy guy and a moral politician (and there are not many of those these days). I will be following the Liberal party’s shanangins to see what happens next but so far it seems that my love affair with the Liberals is over.

Smack Down!!

Looks like the prospect of me voting Liberal in the fall election (if Stephen “firm election date” Harper has the guts to call) are increasing day by day. I like this.

Stephane Dion has challenged the prime minister to clarify his view on abortion, threatening to reignite the debate as Canada careens towards an election.

The Liberal leader threw down the gauntlet while answering a question at a town-hall meeting on Wednesday night in Oakville, Ont.

The event was billed as a discussion of the Liberals’ carbon tax plan, but a member of the audience instead asked Dion’s views on the Unborn Victims of Crime Act. The private member’s bill would make it a criminal offence to harm an unborn child during an attack on its mother.

Dion said he opposed the proposed legislation because it might infringe on women’s access to abortion.

“We need to protect everyone against crime but, at the same time, it happens that I believe in the rights of women to choose and I have a lot of respect for the people who have a different view,” he told the crowd.

Dion then called upon Stephen Harper to state his own position on abortion.

“I think all Canadians have the right to know what the party leader thinks,” he said. “I gave my opinion. I want to hear the opinion of Stephen Harper.”

Now that’s a smack down!! We will eagerly wait for Stephen “yes there will be fall election/no there will not be any elections in the fall season” Harper to respond.

The Green Shift

Well, well. Stephen Dion finally shows some spine and comes out swinging. I had thought that he was going to be a foot note in history books but looks like he is fighting to be on the front pages.

I read the plan (PDF) and on paper it looks like a bold initiative and seems do-able. Here is my take on the plan:


I was once part of a focus group where environment was the focus. I remember one of the questions was, how much would you be willing to spend more per month to help pay for the environment. And it was obvious right away that the younger crowd (less than 40 year) was willing to put in more money than the older crowd (a couple of the oldies actually said “the environment can go to hell”). This was a couple of years ago and environment is not on top in the minds of fickle minded Canadians. However, what we need desperately is leadership in fighting global warming. And for my money, Stephen Dion has come up with a very good plan. Will I have to pay for it? Of course, the gas prices will go up, the food costs will go up, the manufactured items will go up and jobs will be lost. So, I and millions will have to pay for the cost in some form. But if it’s good for the economy in the long run and helps my kid, I will pay for it.

I think that this plan is revolutionary and very helpful to the environment and the economy. That’s right, the plan helps save taxes for individuals and the industrial sector. Do not be sucked into this belief that the plan is going to hammer the economy. The industrial sector (the largest polluters) will be getting major tax breaks from the plan. The small businesses will get larger cuts from the plan so it’s win win for all parties concerned. The plan proposes to set up auditing to make sure that each dollar earned from the polluters will go to the Canadians in form of tax breaks and credits.

Politically, this plan will be a hard sell. I mean, Alberta and Saskatchewan would be violently opposed to the plan. Ontario’s manufaturing sector will be opposed to it as well. But if the message can be streamlined by the Liberal party and can elucidate the key points of the plan, majority of the Canadians will go for it. And the Liberal, once in power, can cajol and negotiate it’s way to implementation of the plan.

I intend on watching the Liberals very closely on this. If they ho hum their way through the PR campaign of the plan, I am going to assume that they have every intention of loosing to the Conservatives and vote another way. If they take the fight to the Conservatives, I will be a big proponent of the Liberals and talk to all my friends and acquaintenances to vote Liberals.

Next few months would be interesting.

Why Oh Why Does He Put His Foot In His Mouth?

In the next federal election (whenever it happens), I will probably vote for S. Dion of the Liberal party. I have always liked his message and even though he was not able to accomplish much during his tenure in the environment ministry, it seems his heart is in the right place.

However, if he continues to put his foot in his mouth like this again and again, I might have to re-think my opinion of him :

OTTAWA – The possibility of a spring election surfaced yesterday as Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion said he expects to oppose the next Conservative budget. This would mean he would join with Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe, his old political foe, who has already declared he too is willing to topple Stephen Harper’s minority government.

……….Mr. Dion said it will be hard for Mr. Harper to cobble together a budget that meets the approval of the House. “Would I [be] able to say to my colleagues, I love the budget that Mr.
Harper is presenting? It’s very unlikely,” Mr. Dion said at a press conference on the day after the close of Parliament’s fall session.

OK. What the hell was that? He has not even seen the budget and he is ready to hate it? Is he, after all is done and said, a typical politician? God, I hope not. I have much expectation from this guy.