Thursday, December 04, 2008

Excitement in Canadian Politics

Yes, your read that title correctly, there is actually something to get excited about in Canadian politics. There's even a live blog happening right now...

If you've been following the political crisis going on here in Canada, perhaps you'll agree (or disagree) with some of my thoughts on the matter...

  • If the opposition parties really want to form a coalition, why didn't they do that a few months ago so we could vote on it during the election ?
  • Can we really feel comfortable with a coalition (or even an opposition party, i.e. the Liberals) who don't appear to be very comfortable with their leader
  • I've heard that the Conservatives made a similar move with the Bloc Quebecois some years ago, but they are playing on our short term political memory and saying support from the Bloc creates a separatist agenda - I don't buy that
  • Who's telling the truth - have the opposition parties really made any realistic and specific recommendations to the government on dealing with the economic crisis ? Harper says they haven't, Layton says they have. Interesting and ironic side note that Harper was supposed to be in Woodstock this morning for the opening of a new Toyota plant !
  • I'm still confused on what justification is required for the Prime Minister to ask for a prorogue parliament. Is it just a legal wiggle to bide time ? And what about the fact that Harper already delayed the confidence vote last week ?
  • I'm still uncomfortable with this idea that the coalition is suggesting that they are "re-configuring" their seats to create a majority coalition without any public say. That just doesn't feel right or democratic.
  • I actually found myself liking Jack Layton during his press conference last night, I can't say I support his NDP agenda, but in coalition with the Liberals and the Bloc, he may be a more interesting choice as a leader than Dion. Could Layton (or for that matter Dion) really put aside their partisan agenda in favour of a united opposition. It sounds nice, but it's still a big stretch to actually seeing how it would work.
  • Although a few months ago I was thinking it was nice to have a wide variety of political parties, I'm beginning to understand the benefits of having just two or three choices and actually creating a government that can get things done.
I'd love to hear your thoughts and arguments.

1 comment:

Suze20TO said...

Wow...good questions!! Can you answer them now??? Because I can't. I want a time machine. Run both options in parallel and see if one is better than the other. Then I could come back and tell the Governor General what to do.

The Conservatives came about because the Reform and the PC joined forces (one less party). I don't see the Bloc Quebecois going anywhere now as long as Quebec is part of Canada. Can the NDP and Liberals (and Green) really combine for the long term?

You're right, when the vote gets split so much, we will end up with minority governments, like we have in the last 3 elections....but in saying that, it's been like this for decades and majorities have been won. I think that we as Canadians aren't united in our concerns.

If you look at our history though, (and perhaps most countries are like that), we like change. We give the liberals a shot for two or three terms then the Conservatives get their turn for a turn or two. The liberals will win the next election (once we have a chance to forget Chretien) if they have a half-decent leader (and they don't completely mess things up with this coalition attempt). Time will tell.