The Shotgun Blog
Monday, December 01, 2008
So the Great Canadian Drama has one more week, giving the Liberals, NDP, and the Bloc seven more days to mouth useless platitudes like, say, these from across the Pacific.
It will certainly be entertaining, and there will be much ink spilled and bandwith burned, but in the end, I'm guessing the Bloc balks.
With all the Lib-NDP talk and the what-was-he-thinking screeds aimed at Harper, there hasn't been much talk about the Bloc lately. That suprises me, because none of this can happen without them.
The Conservatives have thirty more MPs than the Liberals and NDP put together (if you include Andre Arthur on the government side), whereas they needed vacancies just to get to parity with the combined left in the last Parliament. This time, if the left wants to stop Harper, they'll need the Bloc.
Meaning the Bloc will go down in history for forcing another election (maybe) or propping up the very Liberals they have been fighting in Quebec for over fifteen years.
I don't see it happening.
Many perceive the Bloc to be lefties - and at the MP level, they are. Their voters, however, are all over the map politically, bound together largely (now) by a visceral hatred of the Liberals and (later) the pipe-dream of independence. Both will vanish into thin air if Gilles Duceppe announces he's decided to replace Stephen Harper with insert-Grit-leader-here.
While the rest of Canada will be watching the melodramaric barb-throwing ("Their undemocratic!" "Well, they don't care about the economy!" etc.), Pauline Marois has to be hearing it from her supporters about the federal cousins being involved in a deal that supposedly includes Jean Chretien himself.
The new vote of confidence is December 8, which just happens to be E-Day in Quebec. I wouldn't be surprised if half the Bloc caucus suddenly feels the urge to campaign for PQ candidates back home and - aw, shucks! - just can't find a way back to Ottawa in time.
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One thing the Liberals have developed over the years is the ability to wrest power on the Canadian federal scene. Interestingly enough, this can be viewed as a virtue by Canadians: you create your own success. The Conservatives are stewarding the country with integrity and priciples, but with an opposition that has neither of these, it is a fox in the henhouse scenario. The largest single challenge for Conservatives is to defend the country from the Liberal Party of Canada, who, as journalists in Canada have forgotten with their gnat-like attention span, seek to have and retain power above all. It is the only virtue for the left.
If you recall, the Liberal lost power because of their extensive corruption and abuses of power - nothing appears to have changed.
Posted by: mgw | 2008-12-01 10:53:51 AM
It's just been announced that Dion is the choice of the coalition for Prime Minister. What in God's name are these people drinking? Don't they realise they're risking civil unrest, a tax revolt, and strong separatist movements in the West? Or are they so blinded by their lust for power that they simply can't think straight anymore?
Posted by: Patrick B | 2008-12-01 12:07:06 PM
A question for the politically astute:
I've just read that after the coup, "the coalition" will pump 30 billion into the economy.
Am I completely wrong, or is this a finance thing that would automatically be another confidence matter? Could the coalition then be toppled in turn, sending us back into another election?
Personally, this would be preferable.
Posted by: Flatlander | 2008-12-01 12:37:00 PM
If you are looking for corruption and abuses of power look no futher than the conservative party.
We have a case here of the pot calling the kettle black. It will be interesting to see if this is posted or cast aside for only right wing rants.
Posted by: John Dear | 2008-12-01 12:49:01 PM
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