Do Canadians actually prefer minority rule?


Praxius
Free Thinker
#1


Do Canadians actually prefer minority rule? | rabble.ca

Quote:

Since Canada's miniature constitutional crisis began a few weeks ago, I have come to realize that I am talking at cross-purposes with my fellow Canadians. I have been misperceiving the statements by supporters of Stephen Harper's government as a problem of political literacy.

Statements that it is "undemocratic" for a group of MPs representing 54 per cent of voters and 52 per cent of parliamentarians to attempt to govern have so distracted me with their inaccuracy and inconsistency with parliamentary tradition that I have fallen into explaining that Canadian democracy does not work the way they claim. A leader of a party supported by 37 per cent of voters, holding 47 per cent of the seats in Parliament does not, based on any rules I know, have a "clear mandate" to rule unilaterally.

But that is not the point. Political debates are not and never should be about how things are. Politics is about how people think things should be. To look at recent polls, it is clear that a clear majority of Canadians believe it should be illegal for a set of parties supported by the majority to rule our country if the party that received the largest number of votes in the last election does not lead that group. They show a clear majority of Canadians do not believe that a government should require the confidence of a majority either of parliamentarians or of Canadians in order to govern.

Canadians want their government to be led the Prime Minister, not Parliament. We don't want the majority to rule but rather the largest plurality to do so. My disagreement with the majority of Canadians is not, as many of us have been pretending, a civic literacy issue. It is a civic values issue.

We leftists tend, erroneously, to believe ourselves more educated and intelligent than our opponents, that if we just "educate" people, they will come around to our point of view. This does a disservice both to our opponents, by insulting their intelligence, and to ourselves by recommending stupid political strategies.

What if instead of believing Canadians don't understand democracy, we consider the possibility that Canadians don't like democracy?

Democratic decision-making has three features: (a) public participation, (b) deliberation and (c) majority rule. While 59 per cent of Canadians remain willing to participate, it is increasingly evident that the second and third aspects have lost buy-in. Canadians prefer executive dictatorship to deliberation and negotiation; and they prefer rule by substantial minorities to rule by the majority.

How have we come to this point?

First, we need to look to our plurality voting system. A system that awards representation to the winner of the most votes in a single riding, irrespective of their proportion of the vote (recent elections have been won with as little as 29 per cent) means that "false majorities" are routinely produced when the party garnering less than a majority of the vote wins a "majority government" by coming first in the majority of seats.

But in the past, Canadians did believe in deliberative democracy and majority rule, despite our flawed voting system. Canadians expected Pierre Trudeau to co-govern during his minority government in 1972 and mocked Joe Clark for his failure to assemble a working parliamentary majority in 1979. He became an object of derision for his inability to assemble a voting majority in the Commons. Contrast the mockery of Clark to the contemporary indignation towards the parties that could not bring themselves to vote for the mini-budget. In the minds of most Canadians, it was not Harper who was at fault for failing to assemble a majority; it was the opposition for defying his one-man rule.

And what appears to have transformed that anger into outrage and a massive windfall of support for the Conservatives was opposition parties' plans to co-operate. Again and again, open line show callers and bloggers stated, "nobody voted for the coalition." True. But nobody voted for dismantling the nation's political funding system or a fire sale of crown assets, or any of the other proposals in the mini-budget. In the past, we have shown boundless tolerance for radical changes of direction after elections and the implementation of hitherto-unannounced policies (e.g. the Chretien government's radical reworking of social program funding) or cancellation of prominent portions of parties' platforms.

Obviously, there was something especially offensive about this particular deviation from campaign trail statements. And I would suggest that it was the idea of a coalition itself that Canadians found offensive, the idea that decision-making should be collaborative, deliberative and based in the Commons rather than the Prime Minister's Office. Canadians had come to expect Prime Ministerial dictatorship. And when it wasn't delivered they were disappointed to see the potential end of the plurality-based executive autocracy they have enjoyed during both minority and "majority" administrations for more than a generation.

Current polls show that support for personal, autocratic governance transcends Canada's right-left divide. Even as an increasing majority of Canadians come to perceive Harper's views as out of sync with theirs, a growing majority believe his government has the right to govern with or without parliament's consent.

This belief comes from a shifting perception of what makes a government and its leader legitimate. In most countries, the increasing diversity of political opinion has resulted in more proportional voting systems and coalition-building; it has reinforced deliberation and negotiation in politics. These changes have been made not simply out of respect for diversity but out of a growing demand for social and political order in the face of an increasingly diverse and atomized society. Yet Canadians, motivated by the same anxieties, have chosen a different response. We seek to vest power in the person who is most capable of fusing a subset of these atomized groups and individuals back into some kind of unified formation.

In our voting system, the most successful party is one best at reducing the number of choices its potential voters feel that they have. A look at Liberal messaging shows that Jean Chretien became increasingly reliant on his ability to convince potential NDP and Green Party supporters to vote for his party. And despite his antipathy for Chretien, Paul Martin intensified this approach. What we missed during that time was how this change in Liberal tactics helped to change Canadian ideas of what made a legitimate government. As the Liberals lost their capacity to intimidate left-of-centre voters, they lost power. And Canadians learned a lesson: a government's legitimacy comes not from its ability to appeal to the majority but instead from its ability to control and discipline its own supporters and potential supporters.

Of course, the Liberal Party's fortunes were not the main way this lesson was imparted to Canadians. They learned this best through the "unite the right" movements that began in 1997. The failure of the Canadian Alliance to limit competition and restrict choices available to conservatives was correctly portrayed as the reason that conservative Canadians failed to retake power in 2000. The democratic, voluntary processes set up by Preston Manning to concentrate the conservative vote were rejected as insufficient and conservative activists embarked on the project of the total eradication of one of their two parliamentary parties.

Stephen Harper's instrumental involvement in the process of destroying the Progressive Conservative Party and restricting the choices of right-of-centre voters has come to be perceived by Canadians as the source of his and his party's political legitimacy. Canadians today perceive the basis of a leader's legitimacy to rule stemming not from his ability to gain the support of the majority but his ability to control and discipline his electoral base by restricting their choices on their ballot and intimidating them into concentrating their votes more effectively than their competitors.

For Canadians, entitlement to rule comes not from the capacity to build a coalition representing the majority but instead from the capacity to discipline one's core constituency. This is why, much as they find these attributes of Harper personally distasteful at a human level, Canadians appear politically undaunted by the image of a Prime Minister who rules his party by fear and centralizes power in his own hands. What offended Canadians about the likes of Randy White and other undisciplined, bigoted members of the Class of '93 Reformers was not their bigotry, per se. It was the way their public statements demonstrated Manning's inability to offer the discipline and control Chretien could.

While some see this is as evidence of the Americanization of Canadian politics, it is far more Russian than American. Americans can barely comprehend the idea of an "official opposition," because they assume that every single member of the legislative branch, just like the executive, part of the government and responsible for co-governing the nation. Executive leadership is an American value. Total executive hegemony, at least on this continent, is a thoroughly Canadian one.

Lest leftists misread this as an indictment of the right, let me be clear: this is a national problem. One need only look at the City of Toronto, bastion of coalition support in recent weeks. Municipally, NDP and labour leaders have vociferously supported creating a "strong mayor" system of municipal governance. In Toronto, our NDP mayor and his supporters argue that our legislative body, the city council, is "dysfunctional." But instead of supporting reforms to the body, their solution is "to drain the power of council" into the mayor's office. New Democrats join Liberals and Conservatives in demanding the radical disempowerment of the legislature and concentration of power in a mayoral autocracy able to set civic policy without the consent of a legislative majority.

This should not surprise us. For all the obfuscation of their public campaign, the most vociferous defenders of plurality voting and minority rule in the 2005 B.C. referendum on proportional representation were New Democrats, eager for the next time a right-wing vote split results a 39 per cent "majority" government for them.

Western NDPers internalized decades ago a belief the majority of Canadian voters are now coming to accept: what entitles you to rule is not the confidence of the majority but rather the relative discipline of your gang. And in this model, coalition-building, deliberative governance and majority rule are the very opposite of political legitimacy in today's Canada.

Stuart Parker is a director of Fair Voting BC and the Toronto Democracy Initiative. In the past, he has served as a director of Fair Vote Canada and the leader of the Green Party of British Columbia. He is currently an instructor at the University of Toronto's History Department.

He does bring up some interesting points.
 
pegger
No Party Affiliation
#2
It's an interesting article. Seems to me that more and more Canadians would prefer a "US style" of Government, where there is one guy calling the shots.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#3
This had nothing to do with whether Canadians want to be led by parliament or a PM. It has everything to do with the Libs and the NDP getting into bed with people that want to break up the country just so they can gain power. They have falsely assumed that people were more willing to accept the Bloc in power than the Cons. They were (and are) horribly, horribly wrong. My father is a lifelong Liberal and despises Harper yet, he was sickened by the idea that the Liberals would embrace the Bloc (who wish to abscond with his home province). This author, and most on the left simply can not grasp this. If they don't change their attitude and their tune quickly, they will be handing the Conservatives a majority come next election.
 
Unforgiven
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

This had nothing to do with whether Canadians want to be led by parliament or a PM.

This much is correct.

Quote:

It has everything to do with the Libs and the NDP getting into bed with people that want to break up the country just so they can gain power. They have falsely assumed that people were more willing to accept the Bloc in power than the Cons.

Ah, I guess you are one of those people who doesn't quite understand what is going on here. The Bloc isn't nor will be in power. What they will do is abstain from joining the Conservative Coalition from bringing down the Liberal/NDP coalition in a non-confidence vote.

It's right there, you can go read it if you like.

Quote:

They were (and are) horribly, horribly wrong.

I suppose they would be if that was the case. Of course it is not, so no one has to worry about that any more than they have to worry about the Conservative Coalition allowing Taliban to dictate Canadian policy.

Quote:

My father is a lifelong Liberal and despises Harper yet, he was sickened by the idea that the Liberals would embrace the Bloc (who wish to abscond with his home province). This author, and most on the left simply can not grasp this. If they don't change their attitude and their tune quickly, they will be handing the Conservatives a majority come next election.

I don't know about that. I was reading a little over at Rabble.ca and it looked to me as though many there grasp the issues well enough. Ironical, it seems to be you who thinks that this Liberal/NDP coalition will move outside of the binding agreement they all signed and allow the Bloc to dictate Canadian policy.

The Conservatives have had two turns at bat here and so far we've watched the economy tank, massive job losses and an attempt at scuppering funding to the political parties that depend on that funding at the moment.

Perhaps if the Harproids would sort out the finances and lay off the dirty tricks they would get a majority government at some point.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#5
Quote: Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post

Perhaps if the Harproids would sort out the finances and lay off the dirty tricks they would get a majority government at some point.

Asking the Conservative to lay of dirty tricks would be like asking George Bush to say something intelligent.

You have missed the point. The majority of Canadians are afraid of handing the Bloc power. They fear the Bloc more than the Cons. Whether they will actually have power or not is irrelevant. You, the author, the Libs, the NDP et al have completely missed this point. In politics, perception is everything. It doesn't matter what "is". The Libs and NDP have sided with seperatists. That is what people "know" and that is what people care about. The Libs/NDP have to distance themselves from the Bloc tout de suite if they want to avoid a Conservative majorty or increased minority.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#6
Unforgiven's said pretty much what I would have said, and just about as long too

The Bloc are not an issue.

All they're going to do is vote in with the rest of them. Yes they got veto power, but as soon as they start screwing with that, or they start with the Booga Booga Seperation stuff...... we go back to an election.

To me, it makes sense since we'd at least have a government doing it's job, rather then this doing nothing crap that's going on right now, thanks to Harper.

And an election is going to happen regardless in any situation.... the only difference is that with the Coalition, we'll at least have a break between elections for a bit and we'd have some work get done. The other option is another election in another few weeks...... fun
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

Asking the Conservative to lay of dirty tricks would be like asking George Bush to say something intelligent.

You have missed the point. The majority of Canadians are afraid of handing the Bloc power. They fear the Bloc more than the Cons. Whether they will actually have power or not is irrelevant. You, the author, the Libs, the NDP et al have completely missed this point. In politics, perception is everything. It doesn't matter what "is". The Libs and NDP have sided with seperatists. That is what people "know" and that is what people care about. The Libs/NDP have to distance themselves from the Bloc tout de suite if they want to avoid a Conservative majorty or increased minority.

You know what I would do?

I wouldn't distance myself one bit.... I'd keep on the same path and form the Coalition, while explaining to the public what's really going on.

Why would I do this?

Because eventually, the Conservatives will have to deal and work with other parties..... Including the Bloc..... and when they do, they just screwed themselves, because all is needed then is someone jumping up and saying "HEY! Didn't you just screw up our entire government because the other parties were willing to work with the Bloc? Why are you willing to work with them now? Arn't they seperatists??"

And congrats to the Cons...... they screwed themselves without even knowing it.

Dumbassesezezzz.

The thing is, they will have to work with the Bloc eventually..... they got help from the Bloc countless times in the past.... and so did the Liberals, they all work together from time to time in order to get their own bills and things passed through the Parliament..... that's how it always worked.

You know, unless people want a one party system and a President.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by Praxius View Post

And congrats to the Cons...... they screwed themselves without even knowing it.

That would be the Libs and NDP.

The Bloc may not be an issue to you but they are to many Canadians. That is why fewer people supported the coalition than actually voted for the three parties. It says volumes when even somebody that voted for the Liberals doesn't support a coalition that includes the Liberals.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#9
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

That would be the Libs and NDP.

The Bloc may not be an issue to you but they are to many Canadians. That is why fewer people supported the coalition than actually voted for the three parties. It says volumes when even somebody that voted for the Liberals doesn't support a coalition that includes the Liberals.

And on the flip side, I could find a few Conservative voters who have been turned off by Harpers lies and immaturity.... he is afterall supposed to be a "Leader" and the entire government besides his party don't have confidence in him.

As mentioned in the past on another thread, if the Conservatives dumped Harper, there probably wouldn't be a problem..... so long as the new guy would start talking and listening to the other parties.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#10
Quote: Originally Posted by Praxius View Post

And on the flip side, I could find a few Conservative voters who have been turned off by Harpers lies and immaturity

No doubt, but you probably couldn't find any that turned because they would have rather supported the coalition. The simple fact is that the coalition idea has demonstrably hurt the Libs/NDP yet they, and some of their supporters can't see it. It is to there own detriment (and perhaps the country's depending on your viewpoint)
 
Tyr
Free Thinker
#11
I think we are more comfortable with majority rule. Meaning, vote once every four yrs or so, put our trust in the fact that the gov't will be responsible and accountable and forget about it.

Unfortunately we've become somewhat cynical in the last few years and we tend to want to hedge our bets and stick with a minority until they can prove that they can be trusted

Harpo has alot of provin' to do
 
Tyr
Free Thinker
#12
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

This had nothing to do with whether Canadians want to be led by parliament or a PM. It has everything to do with the Libs and the NDP getting into bed with people that want to break up the country just so they can gain power. They have falsely assumed that people were more willing to accept the Bloc in power than the Cons. They were (and are) horribly, horribly wrong. My father is a lifelong Liberal and despises Harper yet, he was sickened by the idea that the Liberals would embrace the Bloc (who wish to abscond with his home province). This author, and most on the left simply can not grasp this. If they don't change their attitude and their tune quickly, they will be handing the Conservatives a majority come next election.

My father is a lifelong Liberal and despises Harper yet, he was sickened by the idea that the Liberals would embrace the Bloc (who wish to abscond with his home province).

He must have been "violently ill" when Harpo absconded with parliment then

I empathisize with him

If they don't change their attitude and their tune quickly, they will be handing the Conservatives a majority come next election

Harpo's chance of getting a majority are about the same as George Jr being able to find Sweden on a world map.

He's lost 10 seats in Quebec for all intents in purposes. Probably just as many in Ontario and half again as many in Atlantic Canada and BC

I guess the "author" had forgotten Harpo's deal with those very same "seperatists" to get his budgets passsed.

Frankly, the ONLY party that is actually doing what it has promised to do is the Bloc. Not that I agree with it, but at least I can believe them

The other three are running around playing "pull my finger"
 
Ron in Regina
Free Thinker
#13
Different people in different places with different viewpoints. From where "Cannuck" is
coming from, he's dead on correct. I agree with him. This Coalition would be a threat
to Canada, but it wouldn't be Quebec who heads for the door.

In the 40+ General Federal Elections in Canada, I believe there was something like SIX
true Majority Governments, and as much as many of you here on this forum dislike not
only Harper but Conservatives in general....the next election, if forced upon us by this
coalition, will give the Conservatives a Majority Government whether Harper or a table
lamp is leading that Party.

For the regions that you all are coming from....Cannuck & Praxius & Unforgiven are all
correct (and representative) in their opinions, but all are not going to convince the others
to accept their views on a Separatist Party (who may or may not really be a separatist
party, and who may or may not really be a threat to Canada). I'm assuming here that
Cannuck comes from a culture like myself where you NEVER make a threat that you're
not willing to act upon. Maybe Praxius & Unforgiven come from a culture where threats
are just threats and seldom acted upon. I don't know....but I see an impasse in convincing
the others about Quebec's role and motives (and those of the rest of the flotsam) in this
Coalition.
Last edited by Ron in Regina; Jan 9th, 2009 at 09:27 PM..Reason: Typo...us instead of up
 
Unforgiven
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post


You have missed the point. The majority of Canadians are afraid of handing the Bloc power. They fear the Bloc more than the Cons.

I don't think I've missed your point at all regardless of how fluid it seems to be. If you check you will find the majority of Canadians are not voting at all. Those that do are afraid of giving anyone power at the moment. What is happening is a mandate for the government to work with all parties to manage the affairs of the nation.

Quote:

Whether they will actually have power or not is irrelevant. You, the author, the Libs, the NDP et al have completely missed this point. In politics, perception is everything. It doesn't matter what "is". The Libs and NDP have sided with seperatists. That is what people "know" and that is what people care about. The Libs/NDP have to distance themselves from the Bloc tout de suite if they want to avoid a Conservative majorty or increased minority.

The thing about fear is that it's finite. Eventually people want to see proof that there is a boogieman. We've been afraid for a lot of years now. The fear card is starting to lose it's shock value.

There was some scared rabbits when the House was prorogued but as time passes, people start to look for the truth. That's always a problem for governments who rely on fear to keep people going along with them. The House reconvenes in a few weeks and from what I have seen, a lot of people have been doing some studying on these issues.

That a coalition government is democratic is a hole in the curtain the Conservative coalition doesn't want people looking behind. The falsehood that someone is handing power to the Bloc, as you seem to like to allude to is also starting to become common knowledge. The bloc has no more power now than they did before. They may get a couple of concessions out of the deal but no one is about to hand separation over to them. Far more concessions have been made for Alberta since Harper became Prime Minister than the Bloc is ever going to get out of a coalition.

The Liberals and the NDP haven't sided with separatists at all. Do you seem to think that they agree with the Bloc on any of the major Bloc issues?

The fact is that the Liberals, the NDP and the Bloc have all lost confidence in the Conservative coalition to run the government. All three parties, which do make up a majority in the House, all duly elected representatives of the public, have shown that they will move to bring about the fall of the Conservative coalition and offer a functioning body that has agreed to work as the government, which if you care to look is a viable option in our form of legislature.

I think you should give the voting public some credit. After all they were smart enough to allow for only a minority government as an alternative to one with a weak leader, that has now been replaced, of a party that's been in the midst of a major upheaval.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

No doubt, but you probably couldn't find any that turned because they would have rather supported the coalition. The simple fact is that the coalition idea has demonstrably hurt the Libs/NDP yet they, and some of their supporters can't see it. It is to there own detriment (and perhaps the country's depending on your viewpoint)

Oh I see it, but I just won't normally say so, since when (once again ) if you go on the flip side, some of the supporters of the Cons won't vocally accept that Harper has seriously damaged the reputation of the Conservatives.

Honestly, before Harper, I had a neutral point of view on the Conservatives, beyond all the other crap that has happened in history. The Liberals did just about as much crap on their own too, with such things as the sponsorship scandal, etc.

But Harper has gone beyond what I could tollerate as an incompetence in securing confidence in the greater majority of Canadians.

And the simple fact that all the other parties simply don't want to work with him, because he doesn't want to in the first place, it's not suprising something like the Coalition would come up.

And when all the other parties find it that difficult to work with him and his party, regardless of their maturity about it, that's still a big blow to the confidence and unity of the nation, just as it is doing right now.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by Ron in Regina View Post

Different people in different places with different viewpoints. From where "Cannuck" is
coming from, he's dead on correct. I agree with him. This Coalition would be a threat
to Canada, but it wouldn't be Quebec who heads for the door.

In the 40+ General Federal Elections in Canada, I believe there was something like SIX
true Majority Governments, and as much as many of you here on this forum dislike not
only Harper but Conservatives in general....the next election, if forced upon us by this
coalition, will give the Conservatives a Majority Government whether Harper or a table
lamp is leading that Party.

That is debatable.... if the Coalition forms and actually does a decent, if not, good job in getting things done and quickening up the process of getting this country out of the hole a little, don't you think that would perhaps damage Harper's chances in another election?

Wouldn't that kinda give people a thought that maybe some of these other parties know what they're doing, and then perhaps vote more broadly? Perhaps as well, more new parties, such as ones for the West and the Atlantic and Central can come into the picture.... thus the government evolves again.

Who knows what will really happen until it happens?

Quote:

For the regions that you all are coming from....Cannuck & Praxius & Unforgiven are all
correct (and representative) in their opinions, but all are not going to convince the others
to accept their views on a Separatist Party (who may or may not really be a separatist
party, and who may or may not really be a threat to Canada). I'm assuming here that
Cannuck comes from a culture like myself where you NEVER make a threat that you're
not willing to act upon. Maybe Praxius & Unforgiven come from a culture where threats
are just threats and seldom acted upon. I don't know....but I see an impasse in convincing
the others about Quebec's role and motives (and those of the rest of the flotsam) in this
Coalition.

Oh I never said they wouldn't do it. If they get screwed around enough or some people keep branding them bad guys for Canada, maybe they'll take their democratic rights and haul ass to Lollapalooza.

And I wouldn't blame them..... they'd be justified in doing so..... and so would we.... and so would you.

The thing about Democracy is that everyone should have the Democratic Right to Walk Away.

You can't hold people hostage that don't want to be ruled by you, or be a part of your systems/methods/screwed up governments, and so on....

When you have the freedom to actually free yourself, why would you need to leave?

When you are continually confined and controlled, wouldn't you want out?

It's about the freedom of choice..... having the knowlege that you have the power to use it.

People who defend guns and nukes should understand this mentality. The difference here is that nobody has to die in the process.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post

I don't think I've missed your point at all regardless of how fluid it seems to be. If you check you will find the majority of Canadians are not voting at all. Those that do are afraid of giving anyone power at the moment. What is happening is a mandate for the government to work with all parties to manage the affairs of the nation.



The thing about fear is that it's finite. Eventually people want to see proof that there is a boogieman. We've been afraid for a lot of years now. The fear card is starting to lose it's shock value.

There was some scared rabbits when the House was prorogued but as time passes, people start to look for the truth. That's always a problem for governments who rely on fear to keep people going along with them. The House reconvenes in a few weeks and from what I have seen, a lot of people have been doing some studying on these issues.

That a coalition government is democratic is a hole in the curtain the Conservative coalition doesn't want people looking behind. The falsehood that someone is handing power to the Bloc, as you seem to like to allude to is also starting to become common knowledge. The bloc has no more power now than they did before. They may get a couple of concessions out of the deal but no one is about to hand separation over to them. Far more concessions have been made for Alberta since Harper became Prime Minister than the Bloc is ever going to get out of a coalition.

The Liberals and the NDP haven't sided with separatists at all. Do you seem to think that they agree with the Bloc on any of the major Bloc issues?

The fact is that the Liberals, the NDP and the Bloc have all lost confidence in the Conservative coalition to run the government. All three parties, which do make up a majority in the House, all duly elected representatives of the public, have shown that they will move to bring about the fall of the Conservative coalition and offer a functioning body that has agreed to work as the government, which if you care to look is a viable option in our form of legislature.

I think you should give the voting public some credit. After all they were smart enough to allow for only a minority government as an alternative to one with a weak leader, that has now been replaced, of a party that's been in the midst of a major upheaval.

My Jebus Giv', I think that's twice in less then 24 hours I completely agreed with what you said.

I'm scared.... hold me
 
pegger
No Party Affiliation
#18
In the last parliament (well, 2 parliaments ago, I guess) - the Liberals abstained, and Conservative supports called them weak kneed.

If the Liberals now vote against the Conservatives, they "are siding with separatists."

It's all a bunch of garbage.

In a Minority Government, the government must work with one other party to get things done. Who will the Conservatives work with? The "loony left?" The "separatists?"

Personally, I would rather go back to the polls - but if the GG asked the opposition to form the government, it wouldn't bother that much either. In the end the "coalition" would need the support of either the opposition (now the Cons) or the Bloc - which is pretty much the same situation we are in now.

At some point the Conservative party needs to accept that Harper is toxic, and that the Conservatives will never get a majority with him as leader.

PS - I really don't think the Conservatives would pick up enough seats for a majority - they would lose the 10 in Quebec - so would need to pick up 22...They would maybe pick up 5 in the West? But they won't pick up 17 in Ontario and Eastern Canada.
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#19
Yeah the more and more time goes by with more of this crap going on, the Atlantics tend to be gearing more away from the Conservatives, as they have lost seats here in the last election if my memory serves correctly.

Sure the Liberals and NDP might have turned off some voters, but I know for sure the Conservatives haven't done a whole lot to get themselves out of the mud either.

If anything, the divisions seen during the last election will probably be a lot wider this next time around.
 
pgs
Free Thinker
#20
I thought the coronation of King Iggy was to kill the coalition
and ellivate the liberals back to their proper place .
We were lead to believe Iggy didn't need the ndp or bloc to oust the conservatives.
What is going on do we still have a coalition or not ?
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by pgs View Post

I thought the coronation of King Iggy was to kill the coalition
and ellivate the liberals back to their proper place .

Nope, he said that although he is not fond of the concept of a Coalition being used, if there is no other option and Harper doesn't snap sh*t on what needs to be done, then he will go full ahead on gettng the Coalition moving forward.

(There's a lot of threads and news reports linked within the political section of the forums..... a search would work just as well)

Quote:

We were lead to believe Iggy didn't need the ndp or bloc to oust the conservatives. What is going on do we still have a coalition or not ?

Not exactly. These are different situations then in the past. All the other parties, although they disagree on a lot of things, all agree on what needs to be done now for our economy and joblosses...... the Conservatives do not. And if the Conservatives don't plan to do anything at the level they all agree needs to be done, then logically if they all can form together to vote collectively on the bills and objectives the government and nation need to pass and take...... then wouldn't you consider that choice?

Even if it's only for a short period of time? (Which the coalition is designed and planned to be for)

You'd have more parties working together, more people being represented, more heads put together, to make sure more things get done faster, and a bit more correctly (hopefully)

and as soon as something stupid or controvertial occurs, or the coalition start to have differences, then we go to an election again.

Nothing to be concerned about as I see it, as we get a period of time to chill before we have to jump back into another election.

If the Conservatives don't want to work with anybody else and wish to dictate how things are going to be, as according to them, and keep the government running slow/deadlock, then what would you do?

Election? Well it'll happen one way or another, it just depends on when you want one.

The problem with one right now without giving the coalition a chance, is what happens if after this next election, where right back to where we were back in October and we still have a minority Conservative government?

I think it would suck to have to go through all of this again so soon after we just went through it.
 
pgs
Free Thinker
#22
It seems to me that the coalition is a sure fire way for a conservative majority.
Watch what you wish for as you may not like the end result.
 
Unforgiven
#23
Quote: Originally Posted by pgs View Post

I thought the coronation of King Iggy was to kill the coalition and ellivate the liberals back to their proper place .

Is that what you thought? Kind of a strange position to come to. What int he world got you thinking that?


Quote:

We were lead to believe Iggy didn't need the ndp or bloc to oust the conservatives.

What's all this "We" business? Who is it that led you to believe something like that?

Quote:

What is going on do we still have a coalition or not ?

Yeah just one more tool in the shed I guess. Should Harper come out of hiding and face the House, his government may fall. I suspect Harper will then resign as Leader of the Conservative Coalition and they will want a second postponment of Parliament to get a new leader in place. I'm pretty sure the Neocons will fold like a house of cards once Harper looses his hold on the PMO.

As for the Liberal/NDP coalition, it's there if it's needed. Question is, will it be needed?
 
Praxius
Free Thinker
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post

IYeah just one more tool in the shed I guess. Should Harper come out of hiding and face the House, his government may fall. I suspect Harper will then resign as Leader of the Conservative Coalition and they will want a second postponment of Parliament to get a new leader in place. I'm pretty sure the Neocons will fold like a house of cards once Harper looses his hold on the PMO.

As for the Liberal/NDP coalition, it's there if it's needed. Question is, will it be needed?

And what if he doesn't want to resign and thinks he can still handle it all?

It seems to be the pop thing to do these days for "leaders" of countries to hold onto their power for as long as they can, to the point of insantiy.

Pervez Musharraf
Robert Mugabe
Vladimir Putin
..... I'm still waiting on Bush to make a move, but then again, how he ever won both elections is still mind boggling to me.

Harper already shows some of the signs of someone just twitching to hold onto their fancy seat no matter what..... it's just a matter of time before we see him spaking on tv hiding in his chair in only a grey sweater, pink boxers and a cowboy hat, holding a hockey stick and ranting on about how everybody around him is a traitor to the nation and he's the only one who knows how to fix things, then swallows his cyanide pill and Hitler's himself.

Great genius, how are we gonna know how to fix things now?

Well ok, maybe that was a bit out there, and maybe that won't happen......

...... but mark my words...... Pink Boxers!
 
Tyr
Free Thinker
#25
And what if he doesn't want to resign and thinks he can still handle it all?

Therin lies the problem.

Quite a few of the party faithful will call for his head if he does not win a majority in the next election (sprng '09). Harpo still believes that he's "the annointed one". Fewer anf fewer are touting that line anymore.

He obviously can't handle it if he was so spineless as to dissolve parliment and hide in his bunker with Cap't Flatulence

Another problem (but no less significant) is that the Conservative bench is very "thin" when it comes to political talent. There are a lot of sycophants, but precious few leaders.

Maybe (and that's a big maybe) with a few years of tarnish free service, Prentice may emerge from a woefully inadequate pack, but the Cons don't (or won't) have the luxury of 5-6 yrs of "rule" in the near term
 
Tyr
Free Thinker
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by pgs View Post

I thought the coronation of King Iggy was to kill the coalition
and ellivate the liberals back to their proper place .
We were lead to believe Iggy didn't need the ndp or bloc to oust the conservatives.
What is going on do we still have a coalition or not ?

As another poster had wrote.... Who is "we". The 62+% of people that didn't want the conservatives to win? "We" is not the definition of the majority of Canadians in this instance
 
Tyr
Free Thinker
#27
Quoting Cannuck

You have missed the point. The majority of Canadians are afraid of handing the Bloc power. They fear the Bloc more than the Cons.


So happy that you have seen the light and admit that the majority of Canadians "fear" the Conservatives
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#28
They fear all politicians
 
Francis2004
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by pegger View Post

In the last parliament (well, 2 parliaments ago, I guess) - the Liberals abstained, and Conservative supports called them weak kneed.

If the Liberals now vote against the Conservatives, they "are siding with separatists."

It's all a bunch of garbage.

In a Minority Government, the government must work with one other party to get things done. Who will the Conservatives work with? The "loony left?" The "separatists?"

Personally, I would rather go back to the polls - but if the GG asked the opposition to form the government, it wouldn't bother that much either. In the end the "coalition" would need the support of either the opposition (now the Cons) or the Bloc - which is pretty much the same situation we are in now.

At some point the Conservative party needs to accept that Harper is toxic, and that the Conservatives will never get a majority with him as leader.

PS - I really don't think the Conservatives would pick up enough seats for a majority - they would lose the 10 in Quebec - so would need to pick up 22...They would maybe pick up 5 in the West? But they won't pick up 17 in Ontario and Eastern Canada.

Wait a second here..

If the Liberals now vote against the Conservatives, they "are siding with separatists."

By who's standards.. ?

If the Governor General decides to dissolve Parliament to call another Election nobody sided with anyone more then when Harper sided with the NDP and Bloc to bring down the Liberals in 2005.. Hence the Conservatives also sided with the separatists and also had a "signed" agreement of understanding to take power in the same fashion as Dion in 2004 I believe. just because they did not require to use the letter does not make them as guilty. Let us call a Spade a Spade here.. Both Partied have used the separatists for their advantage.

Here Spade

In any case we are "Assuming" Ignatieff will hold the coalition together. This is not a done deal and not even certain he will bring down the Government. Holding the coalition together for the reason of getting an Election call would not be the worse thing in Canada however and any party could say they are no longer willing to stay part of such coalition due to changes in one of the parties and policies since.


Once again we see Harper in a tight situation of his own doing and feeling the heat but this time as the polls do not favour him, and in fact showing momentum for the opposition, might it be him that cowards to the Liberals demands..

Only time will tell..

All I ask for is a budget to help the average Canadian and Canadian business as well as stabilizing consumer confidence.. Less then 5 months ago Harper was saying there was no Recession and that Canada's economy was strong and no one would have to fear.. Perhaps reality has set in by now..
 
Francis2004
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by Tyr View Post

And what if he doesn't want to resign and thinks he can still handle it all?

If he loses a vote of confidence its not a matter of "want" but rather of have to..

If he wishes to remain Leader of the Conservatives and give me no options, that will be his loss.

He has proven he can irritate the opposition, lie to the people, stop parliament and frighten seniors.

What about the other qualities he requires like Lead, listen, fix the problems and hold his child not give him a handshake..

CTV.ca | Harper sees daughter off with one-armed squeeze

Wow... Great choices I am left with in parties.. The NDP which I don't believe in, the Liberals with a Centre right Iggy at the helm or the Greens with no elected members..

 

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