If you have "no place to go," come here!

We'll huff, and puff, and, well...write you a sternly worded letter, of course.

Damon's picture

So, back in November and December, the opposition in the Canadian House of Commons was all in a huff (as they should have been) by the Conserative-lead government's fiscal plan that included a plethora of non-progressive/regressive-minded cuts and tools such as suspending federal workers' right to strike.

The Liberals, New Democrats, and the Bloc Québécois raised the rhetoric to soaring heights going so far as promising to topple the government by agreeing to a more progressive-minded pact that'd have ousted the ruling Conservative government. If you'd have hear them, Stephen Harper was the worst Prime Minister, ever; he'd certainly be the death of Canada if not stop, now. So, in order to save his tail, Harper manuevered to have Canada's head of state suspend the parliament until January 29th so as to avoid a vote of no confidence.

During this time, the opposition continued to huff and puff, and then decided on something akin to writing a sternly worded letter upon Harper's reconvening of parliament on January 28th:

“We're putting this government on probation,” Mr. Ignatieff said.

“Canadians don't want another election, and they're tired of political games. They have waited too long for action on the economy for us to fail them now because of partisan interest.”

Worst. Coalition. Ever.

What happened, guys? This has easily got to be one of the worst flame outs I've ever witnessed in a government, definitely a walk-back of epic proportions. Who is this "Michael Ignatieff"? He seems to have converted to Obamaism, with all of this talk about voter fatigue and bipartisianship. Apparently, he was even for the toppling over the government back in the December...that is, before he was against it.

Help me out, here, Mandos.

NOTE: Oh, my. This guy is ever worse than I thought, from his Wiki page about his "2% Less Evil" ideology that's actually very close to actually being named that (i.e. "The Lesser Evil approach"):

Ignatieff has argued that Western democracies may have to resort to "lesser evils" like indefinite detention of suspects, coercive interrogations, targeted assassinations, and pre-emptive wars in order to combat the greater evil of terrorism. He states that as a result, societies should strengthen their democratic institutions to keep these necessary evils from becoming as offensive to freedom and democracy as the threats they are meant to prevent.


In the context of this "lesser evil" analysis, Ignatieff has discussed whether or not liberal democracies should employ coercive interrogation and torture. Ignatieff has adamantly maintained that he supports a complete ban on torture, which according to his 2004 Op-ed in the New York Times, did not include certain "forms of sleep deprivation that do not result in lasting harm to mental or physical health, together with disinformation and disorientation (like keeping prisoners in hoods)."

Seriously? Is this what is passing for liberal "leadership" in 21st Century North America? That last line could be written of many of our Democratic leaders down here in the states, including our president.

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Mandos's picture
Submitted by Mandos on

...was that in the interim period, the Liberal Party had a change of leadership, as Stéphane Dion was a lame duck, having failed to win back control of the government fairly recently.

Iggy, however, is scum, and decided that he couldn't put any more power in the hands of the NDP (which he would have needed for the coalition), and furthermore wanted the Conservative party to hold the recession hot potato for as long as possible, so he nixed the deal.

The other problem was that Canadians don't like governmental procedural tricks, and the coalition idea wasn't popular even if you include people who voted for other parties---because many people felt that this was the Parliament we had elected, even if technically the majority of seats belong to parties other than the Conservatives.

So what we have now is a leader who is in some ways objectively more right-wing than Obama. That is Harper.

Damon's picture
Submitted by Damon on

Thanks, Mandos.

On Ignatieff, I went and looked the guy up and couldn't believe his views on torture. Even Democrats who believe what he does down in the states aren't stupid enough to tell his party what he thinks about it. I guess what I can take from it is that at least he's honest about his pro-torture views, so at least he can be accurately judged. It just surprised the hell out of me.

Anyone know Harper's views on torture? I wouldn't be surprised to hear that Ignatieff differs in no real way on it, and that's scary given that, again, this is what's passing for progressive leadership, these days.

Dion had his problems, no doubt, but Ignatieff isn't the answer. I hope the Liberals choose another leader, soon, and that Ignatieff is just a caretaker.