Monday, December 1, 2008

My Thoughts on the Canadian Politial Crisis



Source: CBC

Most of you know me as pretty laidback and posting the silliest news on here.

But since Friday and especially today I've woken up very worried. I'm a purchaser working for an EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) company. I had to layoff two people in my department on Friday morning. Also on Friday over 100 engineers were laid off. This is quite normal for this industry as we are dependent on the economy and the price of oil. When things are good, we clean up and when things are not, we have to destaff.

But now this political crisis in Canada has everyone at the office this morning very worried. Not surprising since I live in Calgary which overwhelmingly supported the Conversative party. I'm also conservative but am not entirely happy with PM Harper's governing (more on that later).

For those who need a refresher, these were the results of the September election:

Results

Conservatives 143
Liberals 77
Bloc Quebecois 49
NDP 37
Independent 2

Total 308

So as you can see it's a healthy conservative minority. Now the Liberals and NDP want to form a coalition government with their 114 seats? Huh? How can 114 seats be better than 143? This is where the Bloc comes in, theit 49 seats will 'support' this coalition but not be officially in it.

"The Bloc Québécois would not officially be a part of the coalition"

What good is that?

In my view, if the Bloc is not an official part of the coalition, all this talk is nonsense, PERIOD. There cannot be a coalition that has less seats combined then another party.

Also they want Michael Ignatieff to lead this coalition and become the new PM.
How is this possible? Here you have a person who will be prime minister without even winning the leadership of his own party or winning a national election. Seems pretty bogus to me. Having Dion as the PM makes more sense to me but they're not happy with him.

As a conservative, I can't believe how much they have messed this up. Harper's continual iron fist ruling and powermongering has really got himself backed into a corner. It was fun for a while as he had all the power in a minority and scared the Liberals into abstaining from all votes for over a year. I admit that was really funny! But now it's backfired on him and he's really in some deep shit.

But the Liberals have no backbone. All of last year they blasted the conservatives but refused to vote on anything. If the Liberal's were so concerned about the budget and the economy they wouldn't have not shown up for key votes like the budget last year, instead 11 out of 94 Liberal's showed up for the budget vote, and they continued to do this throughout last years government. Now they suppossedly grow a backbone when the government goes after their funding.

The NDP are just a disgrace. This is the closest Layton will ever be to having any power and he's talking everyone into it. I cannot believe the Liberals are falling for it. The Liberals never team up with the NDP ever. Even in more important issues thaN this they didn't partner up. Pierre Trudeau even once engineered his own downfall in 1975 just so that the NDP wouldn't hold the balance of power. Historically these two parties hate each other. But right now they are so desperate they will work together. And as they saY, a common enemy breeds allies.

So this is my really irrational train of scared thought:

1) Story comes out the the NDP/Liberals will form a coalition with Bloc "support".
2) In the conference call Layton mentions not to worry about the Bloc. Agreements have been made with them "long ago" and mentions that "What we really want is just to get Harper out and get the new group in because it’s going to be a hell of a lot better for everything we believe in, correct? Correct."
3) Everyone recognizes that this coalition is on very tenuous ground because the Bloc could submarine it at any point.

Adding those up, I fear a quick but short lived stealing of power. In this time we'd see a quick "stealing" of big oil's money (carbon tax - what they believe in) and giving it to the big union sectors (forsetry, auto - what they believe in). Then this thing will topple and we'll have an election. But by then the damage would have already been done.

We can't just change government and totally ignore the results of the last election. Dion is leaving for sure, prehaps Harper has to resign too.
We can't go from one party without an economic plan (Harper), to a coalition with no economic plan either. We must have an election in January. The election to end all elections.

Let's have two new leaders.
Maybe Peter MacKay against Michael Ignatieff.

Either way, let's have a majority once and for all and squish the Bloc and NDP into submission.

If not, I'll be waiting for you in the unemployment line.

4 comments:

Saskboy said...

"There cannot be a coalition that has less seats combined then another party."

Yes, there can. Harper right now doesn't have power with the support of the Bloc or another party. He has no majority support, so he doesn't get to govern. Dion does have majority support, so he does. When he loses a confidence vote and there are no more alternatives to passing legislation, an election is called. That's how our parliamentary democracy is designed to work. It's only that it hasn't worked in so long that some people forgot what it's supposed to do in a minority situation.

When the governing party chooses a new leader, that person becomes PM. See Kim Campbell or Paul Martin for recent examples of this.

Degenerasian said...

"Dion does have majority support"

How so? 'support from the Bloc" doesn't count as official majority.

"The Bloc Québécois would not officially be a part of the coalition"

This is the main thing for me. If the Bloc wants to official sign on and I'm fine with it. Harper deserves to be pushed out IF the three parties agree to be.

But to have 2 parties gain power and the other just 'support'.
I don't buy that. Dion's been taken to the cleaners.

Boris said...

Degenerasian,
Actually, the Bloc is providing official support. It has, in writing, agreed to support a NDP-Lib government until at least mid-2010. This means that on most issues the the will of the coalition (which in turn represents the will of the majority of Canadians), regardless of whether the Bloc has cabinet positions, is the will of parliament. Perhaps another way of looking at this is to consider that the Conservatives can no long count on the support of the other parties in passing legislation, effectively neutralising that party as a government. The alternative then is either another election, or a coalition.

You may not like it, but thems the way it works.

Degenerasian said...

Boris,

Agreed but I just don't like the word support. They should be in on this signing as an official partner and having cabinet ministers with responsibility.

I am a conservative but I would not be against a 3-party coalition it it makes parliament work. But to have 2 partners and 1 supporter, I don't know....

To me it feels like the Bloc gets a free ride. They are not part of the coalition but support it (under their terms) And if the coalition dies, they just let go and don't take any of the blame.