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Thursday, December 29, 2005

Dump Goodale, Add Sgro

This income trust scandal is bad news for the liberals if there was some political interference it will be far worse than the sponsorship scandal. Everyday Ralph Goodale continues being a cabinet minister is a bad day for the liberals. They should dump Goodale and bring Sgro back into cabinet after she was dumped because of a scandal of giving preferential immigration treatment for free pizza. She was cleared and the liberals can use her case to put the scandal on the back burner.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

US Spying Could Happen Here

The latest scandal to plague the Bush White House should not go unnoticed up here in the Great White North. The Washington Times and the CATO institute recently endorsed Harper because he is anti-Kyoto, pro-Iraq war, and would be more pro-Bush than Tony Blair. Harper disagreed with the article but didn't really explain why he is different then Bush other than the issue on softwood lumber.

Canada and the US are moving in opposite directions. Canada is becoming more progressive and the US is becoming more isolated and rigidly conservative. Some Canadian conservatives are in love with the US because they want a social conservative government, they want to declare war on muslim countries, they don't believe in global warning, and are willing to go into deficit for unrestrained tax cuts.

Many conservatives have criticized the liberals for hiding behind the charter. Randy White sinked the conservatives last election for his comment "to hell with the courts". Do Canadians want a government in power that believes they are above the law? With Stockwell Day as foreign affairs minister to you believe he will upheld Canada's international treaty obligations? Canadians shouldn't assume that the conservatives will restrain themselves because the Canadian public doesn't want any government to use the notwithstanding clause. If Canadians elect a conservative government they must realize they are not electing the liberal party minus the sponsorship scandal. They will be electing Stephen Harpen, a man with well known social conservative views and a deep love for a republican United States. Does Canada want a prime minister or a George Bush-like King?

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Martin Gets Best Shot in during the No-Contact Debate

The new debate format looks alot like the NHL. There was no contact or interaction allowed between the leaders. It wasn't a debate but more like a forum where each leader recited an answer for each question and no leader was allowed to break the format by actaully holding another leader accountable. Under this format it was difficult for their to be winner but there were losers. Layton's constant branding at the end of each message to vote NDP was repetitious and annoying. Harper's Turneresque smirk was annoying and on Quebec separtism the most serious example he thought of was that Canada might not be a sure-fire gold metal winner in the olympics. Duceppe the most experienced debator was rock-solid and effective in his role as Quebec separtist's ambassador to English Canada but he did make a serious error that the none of the other leaders fail to catch. Martin made two great attacks on Harper and Duceppe.

On same-sex marriage, Duceppe said it wasn't voted on should not be reopened up. So it's different than Quebec separtism where there has been not one vote but two votes where Quebekers voted to stay in Canada.

Well, we already had a free vote on that, so I think we shouldn't have a free vote on a question that was resolved every six months. That was decided, and I think we have to live with that, and people I think will get used to that because it is now normal, and I don't want to live in a society where some people don't have the same kind of rights than other people.


Paul Martin later in the debate went after Duceppe with venom over the clarity bill and definately was the highlight of the night.

You are not going to do an "astuce" as Jacques Parizeau said. This is my country and my children were born and raised in Quebec, and you're not going to go to them and say that you're going to find some backdoor way of taking my country or dividing Quebec family against Quebec family. We do have an opportunity, and Quebecers understand this, to build a country which is without parallel, and if you take a look at the way that Canada is measuring up in terms of our economy, in terms of the strength of our social programs, in terms of our independent foreign policy, I believe that we do appeal to the deep attachment, the deep love of this country that Quebecers have and you're not going to win, Mr. Duceppe. Let me tell you that.


Finally, expect Cellucci's book sales to soar with mentions of it from various party leaders including Harper telling Canadians to read page 165. Apparently Cellucci said Martin was going to send Canadian forces into iraq to train iraqi soldiers but instead they decided to train them in Jordan. Scandelous?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Holes in Conservatives Elected Senate Plan

So the conservatives want an elected senate. Great idea but how are they going to do it and what is it going to look like?

If senators are elected without reforming the constitution Alberta still will have only 6 senators compared to 24 in Ontario and Quebec. Also, are the senators going to be elected by party where the senators are chosen proportionally or are they going to be elected individually and Ontario voters will have to select 24 senators from a list over 100.

The senate needs to be elected but it needs to be done properly. The constitution needs to be opened up and Canadians have to decide if each province should receive an equal amount of seats or should the regions by divided more fairly. A fairer represenation (which would have greater western influence) would be to make BC a region, and divide the senators equally among Ontario, Quebec, BC, the Prairies, and Atlantic Canada.

The best solution would be to give each province 4 senators and select the senators proportionally by party. If one party receives 75% of the votes they capture all 4 senate seats, 50% would get 3 senate seats, and after that each party that receives 25% would get at least one senator and the more popular party would receive more senators. Also the House of Commons should remain the dominate house and in order to defeat a bill the senate would need a 2/3 majority but would still be allowed to delay a bill.

Proportional represenation would end the heavy regionalism of Canadian politics that allows the dominate party in a specific region to win all the seats in that region and leaves each province with one party representing their interests and all other political views shut out from any discussion.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Greens campaign is even less invigorating than the dippers

The Liberals started off slow but now are gaining ground with a handgun ban and a fight with a deeply unpopular Bush White House.

The Conservatives came out strong promising to cut GST but not are hoping Canadians will vote for them solely because of Scott Reid's comments.

The NDP campaign has completely fallen off the rails with the CAW supporting the liberals and Layton's message that an NDP vote matters as fallen on deaf ears and the buzz word "strategic voter" has dominated this election.

The Green's party platform is essentially the same as last election. For a party that doesn't have a seat they desperately need a new idea to attract the media attention. Thus far their only message in the mainstream media is a whining leader who is mad that he isn't included in the debate but lacks any innovative ideas like their gas tax increase in exchange for income tax cuts which got media pundits talking. Also, they are looking like a regular political party with the infighting of party members complaining their leader is moving the party too far to the right, and Newfoundland members leaving because of their party's opposition to the seal hunt.

More and more this election looks like a two-horse race. Not because the two leaders are performing well but because the other two parties in English Canada are turning away potential voters with their lack of effort and reliance on a meager strategy that Canadians will vote for their party by default because they don't like the liberals or Stephen Harper. Give us a reason to vote for your party,

Monday, December 12, 2005

NDP's campaign stuck in denial

How symbolic it was that the first campaign plane to get delayed this election was the NDP's plane. With the loss of Buzz Hargrove and the CAW, Layton failed to use this as an opportunity to show voters that the NDP is a moderate party and not under control by any union. He also could have attacked the liberals who now have big business and big unions supporting them. But instead of giving voters a reason to vote for NDP, Layton is still in shock and waiting at the alter for Hargrove to return. Most disturbing for the dippers is the new polls which have them under 15% - a far cry from 22% last spring. The NDP campaign is in a nosedive and liberals are eyeing a majority government at their expense.

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Harper starts the process to replace himself

Stephen Harper is not even going to try to campaign in Quebec and turning the reigns over to Bernard Lord. Bernard Lord is probably the best candidate to lead the conservatives because he is more moderate than MacKay and has been leading a minority government for about two years.

The Liberals had a great day today unveiling anti-handgun legislation which everybody will be talking about for a few days. When Harper was questioned if he would support the policy, he stumpled and appeared unsure of where the conservatives stand on the reduction of handguns.

We'll be prepared to look at any option if it will prevent gun crime," Stephen Harper

Fence-sitting. Knowing their traditional stance on gun control they probably will fight against it, claiming they are fighting for the hunter who sneeks up on deer with a handgun in his pocket.

Harper further criticized the liberals for the guns crossing the US border but didn't offer any explanation on how he would stop the flow of firearms.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Jet Guzzler Tarnishes good day for the liberals

Paul Martin delivered a strong speech at a un conference in montreal. It was guaranteed to attract more attention than Jack Layton's press conference on the streets of Montreal. He highlighted the urgency of climate change but stumpled when reporters questioned why his jet uses twice as much fuel as the conservative and ndp jets. What was suppossed to be a good day for the liberals ended up being a perfect line of attack for the opposition parties who criticized the liberals for tough talk on climate change but little action.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Wipe Them All Out

So Gilles Duceppe wants to wipe every single liberal. Stephen Harper wants to do the same to every liberal in Alberta. The liberals almost wiped out every conservative in the past in 1993 the PC party was almost wiped off the political map. This form of political domination happens not because the parties are winning over 80% of the vote but rather because the identical results are repeated in each riding in a specific region.

In Canada, all ridings are not equal. Voters in too-close to call ridings actually have the power to turf their MPs unlike the rest where voters have zero impact because their MP is leading all the public polls in his riding. Votes are being wasted and if Canadians want this to end this should experiment with a proportional voting system where every vote in equal and all seats are distributed by the national or provincial voting percentage rather than riding by riding challenges. The senate would be the perfect place to try this out.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Et Tu? Buzz Hargrove

Paul Martin probably will be remembered (at least in his PM role) for his bizarre coalition of politicians all over the spectrum who loathe Stephen Harper.

Before his first election he acquired Jean Lappierre from the Bloc, Ujjal Dosanj from the NDP, and of course Scott Brison from the PC party. He also got Joe Clark to support him by calling Martin a lesser evil then Stephen Harper.

Since then the biggest scandal in Liberal party history eruppted and Paul Martin forged a deal with Jack Layton (who earlier blamed him for the death of the homeless) and stayed in power. He also was part of one of the biggest coups in Canadian politics when a shocked nation saw the naming of Belinda Stronach as a LIBERAL cabinet minister - a week before a no-confidence vote.

This election he got unexpected help from Kim Campbell and Ralph Klein who doubted Stephen Harper would ever become Prime Minister. Then a Belinda-type defaction shattered the NDP with union big-boss Buzz Hargrove supporting Paul Martin? After this election not much will change the liberals will still be in charge of a minority government and Stephen Harper will be shown the door. Then the question will be, will Paul Martin be able to maintain his coalition together or will they leave to their national political movements and leave him sinking like Brian Mulroney.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Harper/MacKay next Chretien/Harper

"The independent Director of Public Prosecutions will decide on criminal prosecutions arising from the sponsorship scandal" Stephen Harper

"There's no way that this office, being set up after the fact, is going to have anything to do with the sponsorship program" Peter MacKay

If the conservative's own deputy leader doesn't know his parties policies it's a very small inner circle indeed. Peter Mackay was a former crown prosecuter, and was consulted. Hmmm.

Here's the story

Thursday, December 01, 2005

TV Execs shut out green party

There are 4 debates this time (2 English- 2 French) and no green party. Most interesting is there will be 2 debates in Vancouver before Christmas, the Bloc is invited but the greens aren't. What is most disturbing is the fact that all of the decisions are made by the TV executives of Canada's major networks with no public or political input. Then all of the reporters debate why the greens aren't invited and don't go to the source- their bosses.

Speaking of the Bloc, Gilles Ducceppe suggested Quebec have its own team for the Olympics for Soccer and Hockey. Hockey would make the tournament more interesting force Quebec players to decide between Canada and Quebec. I can't picture Lemieux and Brodeur choosing to represent Quebec instead of Canada. As far as football (soccer) goes a united Canada can't qualify for the World Cup already.