199

‘FIVE BILLION DOLLARS’

The Bloc’s demands should serve as a model to the other opposition parties


 

Those three words—in ALL CAPS to boot—comprised Andrew Coyne’s Twittered reaction to the Bloc Québécois’s demands ahead of the budget. It’s certainly a staggering request, especially considering the state of Ottawa’s finances and the fact more than half the money is earmarked to rectify historical grievances.

Before we go any further, here’s how the $5,058,000,000 the Bloc wants sprinkled around Quebec breaks down:

(1) Reversal of changes to the equalization formula implemented in 2009*: $1.25 billion
(2) Compensation for changes to the equalization formula implemented in 2009 : $250 million
(3) New spending on education and social programs: $800 million
(4) Compensation for harmonization of sales taxes in 1991: $2.2 billion ($1.5 billion in 2011-12)
(5) Compensation for a general decline in revenues: $137 million
(6) Compensation for the ice storm in Montreal in 1998: $421 million
(7) Gilles Duceppe’s pledge to vote for the budget: priceless

Thing is, even if I find it laughable to include a request for money for the ice storm, I have to confess I find the clarity here somewhat refreshing. That’s largely because the Bloc’s demands (PDF here) aren’t just that. What the party released today was more like an economic platform than a simple ransom note. The Bloc’s proposals include a whole host of changes, like additional financial aid to the manufacturing sector, money for an NHL arena in Quebec City, a hike in culture spending, the list goes on. There are also revenue generators like a new tax on income over $150,000, cuts to military spending, and the elimination of subsidies to the oil and gas sector.

So while the scope of Duceppe’s expectations for Quebec may be ludicrous—in itself, the fact the Bloc is asking for money can’t possibly come as a shock to anyone with a pulse—I’m finding it hard to get all that worked up about them. In fact, isn’t this exactly what opposition parties should be doing—you know, telling voters how they’d do things differently if it were up to them? Moreover, don’t we want political parties that make it clear which demands are negotiable and which are not—and to then stand by those principles?


 

‘FIVE BILLION DOLLARS’

  1. I'm reminded of the punchline of a joke…we've already established what you are, now we're just haggling over price.

  2. I'm reminded of the punchline of a joke…we've already established what you are, now we're just haggling over price.

    • I'm reminded of Dr. Evil in Austin Powers.

  3. Well if Harper is going to buy votes, he has to expect a few large bills in the mail.

    Or did he think he could get cheap votes?

  4. Well if Harper is going to buy votes, he has to expect a few large bills in the mail.

    Or did he think he could get cheap votes?

  5. Apparently Steven Page has dumped Harper and will be performing a duet with Gilles in the near future. (The snow is apparently better in Q. city. The opening song goes a little like

    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    I'd buy you a rink
    (I would buy you a rink
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    I'd buy you seats for your rink
    (Maybe in a luxury suite)
    And if I had If I had 5 billion dollars
    I'd plant a million trees in our yard
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    You could help, it wouldn't be that hard
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    Maybe we could equalize our sales harmonies
    You know, we could just forget stuff
    Like 09, 98 and 91
    and buy some food to lay out for us
    Like little pre-wrapped sausages and things

    They have pre-wrapped sausages but they don't have pre-wrapped bacon
    Well, can you blame 'em
    Uh, yeah

    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you a fur coat
    (can't freeze at the rink that's cruel)
    And if I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you an exotic pet
    (and it could be your mascot!)
    And if I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you a hockey team
    (but only one with francophones)
    And If I had 5 billion dollars I'd buy your love

  6. Apparently Steven Page has dumped Harper and will be performing a duet with Gilles in the near future. (The snow is apparently better in Q. city. The opening song goes a little like

    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    I'd buy you a rink
    (I would buy you a rink
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    I'd buy you seats for your rink
    (Maybe in a luxury suite)
    And if I had If I had 5 billion dollars
    I'd plant a million trees in our yard
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    You could help, it wouldn't be that hard
    If I had 5 billion dollars
    Maybe we could equalize our sales harmonies
    You know, we could just forget stuff
    Like 09, 98 and 91
    and buy some food to lay out for us
    Like little pre-wrapped sausages and things

    They have pre-wrapped sausages but they don't have pre-wrapped bacon
    Well, can you blame 'em
    Uh, yeah

    If I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you a fur coat
    (can't freeze at the rink that's cruel)
    And if I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you an exotic pet
    (and it could be your mascot!)
    And if I had 5 billion dollars
    (If I had 5 billion dollars)
    Well, I'd buy you a hockey team
    (but only one with francophones)
    And If I had 5 billion dollars I'd buy your love

    • Bravo Stewart

    • I'm left a bit cold by this. Philippe went through great length to explain the amount of money is not important but rather the fact that, for once, the Block is doing what we would normally expect from a political party.

      The parody of course would be funnier if was original. Seems BNL's song is the de facto platform for a parody about large sums of money being requested.

      • Fair enough, although my lyrics were a response to Coyne's tweet more than Philippe's analysis. With due deference to the isolated Herman, and the original anti-Beatles…
        second verse different from the first

        I can't get no satisfaction,
        I can't get no satisfaction.
        'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
        I just get non, I just get non.

        When I'm drivin' in my car
        and SH comes on the radio
        and he's tellin' me more and more
        about some useless information
        supposed to fire my imagination.
        I just get non, oh non non non.
        a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

        I can't get no satisfaction,
        I can't get no satisfaction.
        'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
        I just get non, I can't get non.

        When I'm watchin' my TV
        about the damn rain that freezed
        knocking down, down our trees
        but Harper can't be a man 'cause he doesn't know
        weather is a federal responsibility
        I just get non, oh non non non.
        a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

        I can't get no satisfaction,
        I just get Coyne's tweet reaction.
        'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
        I just get non, I just get non.

        When I'm skating round the world
        and I'm sayin this and I'm signing that
        and I'm tryin' to make Bettman do
        who tells me a frachise better might come back next week
        but you see I'm on losing streak.
        I jsut get non, oh non non non.
        a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

        I just get non, I just get non,
        I can't get no satisfaction,
        no satisfaction, no satisfaction, no satisfaction.

        • Now that was satisfying. Thumbs up.

        • :)))) Great stuff

          When I'm watchin' my TV
          about the damn rain that freezed
          knocking down, down our trees
          but Harper can't be a man 'cause he doesn't know
          weather is a federal responsibility
          I just get non, oh non non non.
          a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

    • Money for nothing and the cheques for free.

      • Ironically that song is now banned by the CRTC, or is that the punch line?

  7. HAHAHA – this is perfect and Harper must be rolling over with delight – all the players have now placed themselves in the positions where Harper now has the best cover and room to move … truly outstanding – the next sound you hear will be a BIG GULP !!! from both Iggy and Jack who until now have had a nice little party talking big and not carrying a stick whatsoever – the next move on the chess board will be Iggy or Jack – something along the line – we are going to be civil and make parliament work it is all up to evil meanie stevie and in the meantime Harper will choose who to throw a bone at :)

  8. HAHAHA – this is perfect and Harper must be rolling over with delight – all the players have now placed themselves in the positions where Harper now has the best cover and room to move … truly outstanding – the next sound you hear will be a BIG GULP !!! from both Iggy and Jack who until now have had a nice little party talking big and not carrying a stick whatsoever – the next move on the chess board will be Iggy or Jack – something along the line – we are going to be civil and make parliament work it is all up to evil meanie stevie and in the meantime Harper will choose who to throw a bone at :)

    • You lost me totally…right after the HAHAHA part. I must be looking at a different chess game.

      • He actually lost me before that.

      • You got past the first HA?

  9. I've come to the conclusion that the Bloc has largely given up on the sovereignist project, and the party is now focused on extorting as much money from Canadian taxpayers as it possibly can.

  10. I've come to the conclusion that the Bloc has largely given up on the sovereignist project, and the party is now focused on extorting as much money from Canadian taxpayers as it possibly can.

    • Agreed 100%. To cite Parizeau, "il faut traire la vache avant de l'abattre" (milk the cow before you slaughter it).

      This would be the same thing playing out under a coalition, except that the demands would be behind the scenes and I dont trust the Liberals not to cave.

      I think the Bloc might have overplayed its hand here though and gave Harper rhetorical ammo in that he can now claim confidently that the opposition is being unreasonable.

    • Actually, this is a no-lose proposition for the Bloc, which (IMO) furthers their sovereignist objective perfectly.

      If they manage to extort the cash from the Harper government, they enhance their stature and credibility among Quebecois. If, on the other hand, the Harper government refuses and if (more importantly) the Bloc's demands fuel outrage in the RoC, they can point out how unreasonable the current arrangement is, and how indifferent Canadians are toward Quebec's aspirations. In this outcome, they use the episode to (re)stoke resentment against Canada, thereby taking another step toward creating the much-desired "favourable conditions" for the next referendum.

      I don't like it but I think it's brilliant (from the Bloc standpoint).

      • They have played that game forever. And we federal Canadians have played along all the way.

        Have a good look at what happened during the last election. Duceppe never could have pulled off what he did without the ROC playing the ignorant bystander.

        • Not forever…only since 1759. This pas de deux has been danced since then…and it's worked, so far.

          I don't know exactly what it is you want me to have a good look at during the last election. But I will give credit to Duceppe for being a masterful politician.

          • a masterful politician?? having to defend one province against those who must try to stand defending the whole country. It's a cowardly manner of doing politics.

            And………. Canadians calling him a masterful politician are aiding him in his cowardly act.

          • "It's a cowardly manner of doing politics."

            Not if you're a Quebecois…it's brilliant. I think one of the intended consequences of his strategy is to p!ss a lot of Canadians off, so that he can reflect this reaction back to Quebecois as evidence of our hostility and indifference.

            And, judging by your apparent reaction, it's going to work pretty well.

          • You are right. That is why it was so dangerous to have the Bloc part of a coalition. They would be negotiating behind the scenes and it would be all about Quebec. The Libs would be so desperate to stay in power they would give them whatever they wanted. This is no way to run a country. We are breaking apart as a country because we have sleazy politicians who are only interested in themselves and not working for a better country where everyone shares in its bounty.

          • The coalition would have silenced the Bloc's demands. Or their would have been an election. And you can't secretly allocate billions for funding projects.

          • I think, given the controversy surrounding the previous coalition fiasco, the Bloc's formal participation in any future coalition is a moot (not "mute") point. If the Libs and Dippers can't muster a majority between them, that particular coalition won't likely happen.

            And I would be careful about condemning the Liberals for being "so desperate to stay in power they would give them whatever they want", until we see how Harper handles the demand. There are seven Quebec City seats in play and Harper may be eying them pretty desperately himself.

          • 'Seven Quebec City seats in play' are not worth the hundreds of seats the PM would lose across the rest of the country if Harper ever dared cave to the demands of this treasonous bunch. Which, of course, the PM won't do.
            On the other hand, telling these blackmailing clowns in no uncertain terms to stuff their demands could pick him up a few more seats in Ontario and B.C.

        • We have had two political parties play the Central Canada -Quebec card.
          The Liberals did it during the conscription crisis and lost many liberals outside QC.
          It destroyed the PC party in Quebec until Brian Mulroney. (70 years)
          The question remains if the CPC will repeat the mistakes of the Liberals and PC in pandering to QC.

      • I think the Bloc has overplayed its hand as others have said. These demands run the gambit and even a lot of Quebecers, not just in the ROC, will raise their eyebrows wondering what in the world Duceppe is thinking. Anyway, I think it is a mute point and there will be no buying of Quebec votes this time. Duceppe is playing games here and it could be that he knows this is his final election as head of the Bloc and is throwing everything he can think of at the government.
        Its sad when you see a leader making a fool of himself. There are many in the ROC who admire Duceppe but when he performs this kind of stunt he loses credibility.

        • I hate when people do this myself, so I apologize, but there's an error of language (possibly more like a typo) in the comment that I feel compelled to point out. You mean to say that you think this is a "moot point" not a "mute" point.

    • Unlike say…oh all the provincial premiers? Or Perrin Beatty and the corporations he represents? Or all those people who reacted with horror to the Green Shift last election (you mean you actually want us to pay MORE for carbon-based fuels in order to help the environment? Are you crazy?)

      Problem with this country is there are too many people who are only interested in what they can EXTRACT from it and have no interest in putting anything back. Plenty of entitlement, no sense of duty.

      • Oh sure….lets make sure that we extract as much as we can from everybody to feed the never ending nanny state. We have had Liberal policies ad nauseum. We still have aboriginals living in third world conditions. We still have hungry kids. We still have food banks. We still have homeless people. We still have high taxes. All of these from years of LiberaL "RULE" and yet you have the nerve to accuse people of only being interested in what they can extract from the country. How has the life of most ordinary citizens improved after the most recent 13 years of do nothing Liberal majority governments? You may want to give up 80% of your income to feed the nanny state but I sure as hell don't. I can spend my own money quite well thank you very much. The government has one job and only one job. That is create the economic conditions where businessess are flourishing and jobs are being created. If they paid more attention to this rather than trying to think of social schemes which only help a small portion of the population we would be better off.

        • Where to start? If you want to know what we have gained from broadly “liberal“ policies than you just have to compare how people live now with how they did before the welfare state introduced a social safety net (`the ground under our feet`as Ignatieff called it) to tame some of the more destructive forces of unregulated capitalism. Just look at things like life expectancy, health indicators, average income. income inequality, etc. What Neocons have been doing for a couple of decades now is trying to reverse all that supposedly in a return to the golden age of the 1950`s-60s (when of course the welfare state was already in place and expanding).

          • Nice try to claim benefits of technology and free market capitalism as those of the welfare state. The welfare state only slowed down our economic growth, it never helps it. We have these things today DESPITE "liberal" policies, not because of them.

    • Extortion? Meh. Nothing illegal about staking out a position, even if it is outrageous.

      The 47 BQ MPs can't achieve anything substantive without the support of 40% of the other 261 MPs.

  11. Agreed 100%. To cite Parizeau, "il faut traire la vache avant de l'abattre" (milk the cow before you slaughter it).

    This would be the same thing playing out under a coalition, except that the demands would be behind the scenes and I dont trust the Liberals not to cave.

    I think the Bloc might have overplayed its hand here though and gave Harper rhetorical ammo in that he can now claim confidently that the opposition is being unreasonable.

  12. Well you can't say Gilles doesn't think big!

    The sad part however, is that this kind of shameless blackmail will probably be a vote getter for the Bloc.

  13. Well you can't say Gilles doesn't think big!

    The sad part however, is that this kind of shameless blackmail will probably be a vote getter for the Bloc.

  14. Bravo Stewart

  15. Now Harper can fund the arena and tell the rest of Canada that he saved them a little under 5 billion while creating 1000 concession stand jobs, and one to be the new Badaboum.

  16. Now Harper can fund the arena and tell the rest of Canada that he saved them a little under 5 billion while creating 1000 concession stand jobs, and one to be the new Badaboum.

  17. I'm left a bit cold by this. Philippe went through great length to explain the amount of money is not important but rather the fact that, for once, the Block is doing what we would normally expect from a political party.

    The parody of course would be funnier if was original. Seems BNL's song is the de facto platform for a parody about large sums of money being requested.

  18. Well, you tried Philippe, but they all got confused by the successive zeros.

  19. You lost me totally…right after the HAHAHA part. I must be looking at a different chess game.

  20. Well, you tried Philippe, but they all got confused by the successive zeros.

  21. Was the CPC really looking to gain seats in Quebec anyway?

  22. He actually lost me before that.

  23. Actually, this is a no-lose proposition for the Bloc, which (IMO) furthers their sovereignist objective perfectly.

    If they manage to extort the cash from the Harper government, they enhance their stature and credibility among Quebecois. If, on the other hand, the Harper government refuses and if (more importantly) the Bloc's demands fuel outrage in the RoC, they can point out how unreasonable the current arrangement is, and how indifferent Canadians are toward Quebec's aspirations. In this outcome, they use the episode to (re)stoke resentment against Canada, thereby taking another step toward creating the much-desired "favourable conditions" for the next referendum.

    I don't like it but I think it's brilliant (from the Bloc standpoint).

  24. Unlike say…oh all the provincial premiers? Or Perrin Beatty and the corporations he represents? Or all those people who reacted with horror to the Green Shift last election (you mean you actually want us to pay MORE for carbon-based fuels in order to help the environment? Are you crazy?)

    Problem with this country is there are too many people who are only interested in what they can EXTRACT from it and have no interest in putting anything back. Plenty of entitlement, no sense of duty.

  25. You got past the first HA?

  26. So the only real question left is, when Harper gives them FOUR AND A HALF BILLION DOLLARS will this be considered:

    1. another flip flop and giant cave-in of wasteful spending by unprincipled Harper who never saw a voter he didn't think he could buy

    or

    2. a gross outrage and betrayal of Quebec and another proof of why Quebec needs to separate?

    I'm going with 3. Both.

  27. So the only real question left is, when Harper gives them FOUR AND A HALF BILLION DOLLARS will this be considered:

    1. another flip flop and giant cave-in of wasteful spending by unprincipled Harper who never saw a voter he didn't think he could buy

    or

    2. a gross outrage and betrayal of Quebec and another proof of why Quebec needs to separate?

    I'm going with 3. Both.

    • I am impressed the Conservatives are on the hook for a storm in 1998 before their party was ever created.

      I can only hope all 77 MPs on your team are allowed to show up and vote up or down pending the polling numbers (of course)

  28. Fair enough, although my lyrics were a response to Coyne's tweet more than Philippe's analysis. With due deference to the isolated Herman, and the original anti-Beatles…
    second verse different from the first

    I can't get no satisfaction,
    I can't get no satisfaction.
    'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
    I just get non, I just get non.

    When I'm drivin' in my car
    and SH comes on the radio
    and he's tellin' me more and more
    about some useless information
    supposed to fire my imagination.
    I just get non, oh non non non.
    a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

    I can't get no satisfaction,
    I can't get no satisfaction.
    'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
    I just get non, I can't get non.

    When I'm watchin' my TV
    about the damn rain that freezed
    knocking down, down our trees
    but Harper can't be a man 'cause he doesn't know
    weather is a federal responsibility
    I just get non, oh non non non.
    a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

    I can't get no satisfaction,
    I just get Coyne's tweet reaction.
    'Cause I try and I try and I try and I try.
    I just get non, I just get non.

    When I'm skating round the world
    and I'm sayin this and I'm signing that
    and I'm tryin' to make Bettman do
    who tells me a frachise better might come back next week
    but you see I'm on losing streak.
    I jsut get non, oh non non non.
    a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

    I just get non, I just get non,
    I can't get no satisfaction,
    no satisfaction, no satisfaction, no satisfaction.

  29. In fact, isn't this exactly what opposition parties should be doing—you know, telling voters how they'd do things differently if it were up to them?

    Good point. If we were talking about a party that might actually seek to govern. Which, you know, we're not. This rump collection of whining spoiled brats with the laundry list? They should be exposed for what they are: an embarrassment to the dignity of the peuple Québécois.

    Monsieur Bernier, je vous invite à partager une telle pensée devant un micro…

  30. In fact, isn't this exactly what opposition parties should be doing—you know, telling voters how they'd do things differently if it were up to them?

    Good point. If we were talking about a party that might actually seek to govern. Which, you know, we're not. This rump collection of whining spoiled brats with the laundry list? They should be exposed for what they are: an embarrassment to the dignity of the peuple Québécois.

    Monsieur Bernier, je vous invite à partager une telle pensée devant un micro…

    • If they claim to represent the needs of Québec, why scorn them when they do represent the needs of Québec.

      An embarrassment? They haven't let the Québécois down on their promise yet. They haven't turned on their principles. They haven't been outright derogatory or libelous. And that last laundry list is actually reasonable. That's why they still get Quebec's vote.

      The real embarrassment is that the other parties can't do the same.

  31. My, my, the Google News aggregator is getting conflicting headlines, one after th'other:

    Ignatieff suggests he's OK with funding for Quebec NHL rink (National Post)
    Feds shouldn't foot bill for NHL-calibre arena: Iggy (Toronto Sun)

  32. My, my, the Google News aggregator is getting conflicting headlines, one after th'other:

    Ignatieff suggests he's OK with funding for Quebec NHL rink (National Post)
    Feds shouldn't foot bill for NHL-calibre arena: Iggy (Toronto Sun)

    • That's because Ignatieff can't take a position on anything without adding caveats or weasel words which will allow him to move with the largest block of votes. He is a fool. The latest I saw was he was saying the same thing Harper was saying but only in his elitist way which most Canadians don't understand.

      • In fairness, what is HARPER's position on funding for a Quebec NHL arena? Is he pro, or con?

        • I don't speak for Harper but I understanding is the government wants more private funding. Its quite simple if you listen.

    • One would have to read the articles to know for sure of course, and I haven't, but the word "suggests" in the first headline suggests to me that Ignatief said something that has been INTERPRETED by the NP as IMPLYING that he's OK with the funding, whereas the second headline suggests that Ignatieff ACTUALLY SAID that he's not. So it is possible that it really is the HEADLINES that are inconsistent, not Ignatieff's position.

      • I only made reference to the headlines. I was not prepared to believe that he said one thing to one reporter, and the exact opposite to the other. I am more prepared to believe that he chose language that inadvertently led (was expressly designed to lead?) each in the audience to hear what s/he wanted to hear.

    • It's just Ignatieff flip-flopping again. And by the way, I am not aware of or seen any media report that Harper has said he would support an arena for Quebec City. It's all media fabrication.

  33. If they claim to represent the needs of Québec, why scorn them when they do represent the needs of Québec.

    An embarrassment? They haven't let the Québécois down on their promise yet. They haven't turned on their principles. They haven't been outright derogatory or libelous. And that last laundry list is actually reasonable. That's why they still get Quebec's vote.

    The real embarrassment is that the other parties can't do the same.

  34. Now that was satisfying. Thumbs up.

  35. I'm reminded of Dr. Evil in Austin Powers.

  36. :)))) Great stuff

    When I'm watchin' my TV
    about the damn rain that freezed
    knocking down, down our trees
    but Harper can't be a man 'cause he doesn't know
    weather is a federal responsibility
    I just get non, oh non non non.
    a Hey hey hey, that's what I say.

  37. "In fact, isn't this exactly what opposition parties should be doing—you know, telling voters how they'd do things differently if it were up to them?"

    Opposition party, my a$$ !!

    Real opposition parties run a federal campaign because an opposition is supposed to represent more than just one province.

  38. "In fact, isn't this exactly what opposition parties should be doing—you know, telling voters how they'd do things differently if it were up to them?"

    Opposition party, my a$$ !!

    Real opposition parties run a federal campaign because an opposition is supposed to represent more than just one province.

    • Long time followers of Canadian politics will recall that, in fact, the Bloc was at one time her majesty's loyal opposition, with more seats than the NDP, Reform Party or Progressive Conservatives.

      • Pathetic, don't u think?

        What on earth made spineless Canadians let it come to this?

        • Healthy dislike of the reform party!

    • Still haven't clued into what an MP is, I see.

    • an opposition is supposed to represent more than just one province

      Says who?

      An opposition party can run on any platform they darned well please. They can represent all the provinces, or three guys in a basement. They can stand for a more centralized and powerful government or the can counsel anarchy, and government by the principle of survival of the fittest.

      Just because you're opposed to the perspective from which an opposition party opposes the government doesn't make them not an opposition party.

      • You are right, my lord.

        Keep on defending your point of view by insisting that my arguments are solely based upon personal preference. Of course, my lord, it is most logical indeed that one province could be able to represent federalism, and that federal politics can be about one province's interest, or -hell, why not – can be about three guys in a basement.

        But how do you square such argument with the fact that federal taxes must be paid? You better have a talk with the courts soon, because tax season is upon us. If a federal system cannot be based on something held collectively, why then would our tax laws be based on such silly notion of federalism and collective understanding thereof?

        I'm so tired of people wanting to miss the point of discussion by playing the reductionist game forever. I really don't care for playing the reductionist kind of game.

        • I'm not sure I understand why the fact that we live in a federal system and pay federal taxes implies that opposition parties shouldn't argue that we shouldn't live in a federal system and shouldn't pay federal taxes. My only qualm with your post is that you seem to imply that the Bloc is not an opposition party because you disagree with the nature of their opposition.

  39. Long time followers of Canadian politics will recall that, in fact, the Bloc was at one time her majesty's loyal opposition, with more seats than the NDP, Reform Party or Progressive Conservatives.

  40. Pathetic, don't u think?

    What on earth made spineless Canadians let it come to this?

  41. You know, they're damned if they don't go out to the people and they're damned if they do go out to the people.

    According to the likes of you, they always damned.

  42. They have played that game forever. And we federal Canadians have played along all the way.

    Have a good look at what happened during the last election. Duceppe never could have pulled off what he did without the ROC playing the ignorant bystander.

  43. Not forever…only since 1759. This pas de deux has been danced since then…and it's worked, so far.

    I don't know exactly what it is you want me to have a good look at during the last election. But I will give credit to Duceppe for being a masterful politician.

  44. a masterful politician?? having to defend one province against those who must try to stand defending the whole country. It's a cowardly manner of doing politics.

    And………. Canadians calling him a masterful politician are aiding him in his cowardly act.

  45. "It's a cowardly manner of doing politics."

    Not if you're a Quebecois…it's brilliant. I think one of the intended consequences of his strategy is to p!ss a lot of Canadians off, so that he can reflect this reaction back to Quebecois as evidence of our hostility and indifference.

    And, judging by your apparent reaction, it's going to work pretty well.

  46. Healthy dislike of the reform party!

  47. Extortion? Meh. Nothing illegal about staking out a position, even if it is outrageous.

    The 47 BQ MPs can't achieve anything substantive without the support of 40% of the other 261 MPs.

  48. Still haven't clued into what an MP is, I see.

  49. I think the Bloc has overplayed its hand as others have said. These demands run the gambit and even a lot of Quebecers, not just in the ROC, will raise their eyebrows wondering what in the world Duceppe is thinking. Anyway, I think it is a mute point and there will be no buying of Quebec votes this time. Duceppe is playing games here and it could be that he knows this is his final election as head of the Bloc and is throwing everything he can think of at the government.
    Its sad when you see a leader making a fool of himself. There are many in the ROC who admire Duceppe but when he performs this kind of stunt he loses credibility.

  50. You are right. That is why it was so dangerous to have the Bloc part of a coalition. They would be negotiating behind the scenes and it would be all about Quebec. The Libs would be so desperate to stay in power they would give them whatever they wanted. This is no way to run a country. We are breaking apart as a country because we have sleazy politicians who are only interested in themselves and not working for a better country where everyone shares in its bounty.

  51. Oh sure….lets make sure that we extract as much as we can from everybody to feed the never ending nanny state. We have had Liberal policies ad nauseum. We still have aboriginals living in third world conditions. We still have hungry kids. We still have food banks. We still have homeless people. We still have high taxes. All of these from years of LiberaL "RULE" and yet you have the nerve to accuse people of only being interested in what they can extract from the country. How has the life of most ordinary citizens improved after the most recent 13 years of do nothing Liberal majority governments? You may want to give up 80% of your income to feed the nanny state but I sure as hell don't. I can spend my own money quite well thank you very much. The government has one job and only one job. That is create the economic conditions where businessess are flourishing and jobs are being created. If they paid more attention to this rather than trying to think of social schemes which only help a small portion of the population we would be better off.

  52. That's because Ignatieff can't take a position on anything without adding caveats or weasel words which will allow him to move with the largest block of votes. He is a fool. The latest I saw was he was saying the same thing Harper was saying but only in his elitist way which most Canadians don't understand.

  53. Hey….before being outraged by the Bloc's latest attempts at blackmail, just thank you lucky stars that Harper prorogued Parliament when he did.

    Can you imagine the demands if the BLOC had a say in whether the Liberals held power or not? You and I know what Liberals are like…..can you think of any amount of taxpayers dollars they WOULDN"T have spent…..to have their leader be PM?

    I think it's time to have a heart to heart with quebecers…..including the new maps showing where the new, tiny nation of Quebec will be within North America. After of course, we cut out Montreal, and the twop two thirds of Quebec that belong to the Cree. Oh…and there's that hydro thingy too…..and…etc..etc..etc…

  54. Hey….before being outraged by the Bloc's latest attempts at blackmail, just thank you lucky stars that Harper prorogued Parliament when he did.

    Can you imagine the demands if the BLOC had a say in whether the Liberals held power or not? You and I know what Liberals are like…..can you think of any amount of taxpayers dollars they WOULDN"T have spent…..to have their leader be PM?

    I think it's time to have a heart to heart with quebecers…..including the new maps showing where the new, tiny nation of Quebec will be within North America. After of course, we cut out Montreal, and the twop two thirds of Quebec that belong to the Cree. Oh…and there's that hydro thingy too…..and…etc..etc..etc…

    • it was made quite clear they would be silent for two years.

      • Really?

        It was also clear there was no deal before the election.

        Can you explain how the driving force behind the coalition "would be kept silent"?

        (I am going to make an offer they can't refuse is not available either)

        Reminds of those criticism by those of the "election every four years" brigade.

        • Easy – if the Bloc broke the deal, they would have to remove support of the coalition, and there would be an election. See? Democracy in action. Neat, eh.

          • so just blowing smoke earlier?

            "it was made quite clear they would be silent for two years."

            I do remember Layton stating he had something to keep the Separatists in line. It is a pity the media never followed up on that either.

            I curious what terms were negotiated for their cooperation that were not made public. I am glad the Bloc have put begun to advertise their price.

    • I hate to disapoint you but the majority of the Montréal population speak French. Also, the majority of the population was born in Quebec. I doubt they would happily accept Montreal to be cut out of the province. Also, that hydro thingy belongs to Quebec, I see no reason why Canada would get it. And I don't think the Innu would be happy about your claim that the top two thrids of Quebec belong to the Cree.

  55. The coalition would have silenced the Bloc's demands. Or their would have been an election. And you can't secretly allocate billions for funding projects.

  56. it was made quite clear they would be silent for two years.

  57. If there had been a coaltion, the Bloc would be midpoint through two years of not being able to ask for anything!

    (You can't have it both ways, CPC partisans, they can't be so terrified of losing their subsidy taht they'll form a coalition, and then have them break their word and go back on their promise by making more demands! Logic beats you!)

  58. If there had been a coaltion, the Bloc would be midpoint through two years of not being able to ask for anything!

    (You can't have it both ways, CPC partisans, they can't be so terrified of losing their subsidy taht they'll form a coalition, and then have them break their word and go back on their promise by making more demands! Logic beats you!)

  59. I hate to disapoint you but the majority of the Montréal population speak French. Also, the majority of the population was born in Quebec. I doubt they would happily accept Montreal to be cut out of the province. Also, that hydro thingy belongs to Quebec, I see no reason why Canada would get it. And I don't think the Innu would be happy about your claim that the top two thrids of Quebec belong to the Cree.

  60. We have had two political parties play the Central Canada -Quebec card.
    The Liberals did it during the conscription crisis and lost many liberals outside QC.
    It destroyed the PC party in Quebec until Brian Mulroney. (70 years)
    The question remains if the CPC will repeat the mistakes of the Liberals and PC in pandering to QC.

  61. To me, it seems like bad tactics for Duceppe to ask for money on Quebec's behalf. Sure, he wants to seem like The True Representative Of The People Of Quebec – but Harper now can't give Quebec any money at all, as it will be seen as appeasing the "separatist traitors of the Bloc".

    It would have been better, strategically, if the Premier of Quebec and the mayors of Quebec City and Montreal had joined forces and produced a laundry list of demands for Quebec. Harper, who would likely be more than happy to spend 50 billion dollars if it would give him a majority, would likely have gone along with that.

  62. To me, it seems like bad tactics for Duceppe to ask for money on Quebec's behalf. Sure, he wants to seem like The True Representative Of The People Of Quebec – but Harper now can't give Quebec any money at all, as it will be seen as appeasing the "separatist traitors of the Bloc".

    It would have been better, strategically, if the Premier of Quebec and the mayors of Quebec City and Montreal had joined forces and produced a laundry list of demands for Quebec. Harper, who would likely be more than happy to spend 50 billion dollars if it would give him a majority, would likely have gone along with that.

  63. juli….

    YOu miss my point.

    I don’t care if Quebecer’s agree with the plan or not. I think the rest of the Country has had enough of the petulant behaviour shown by the “pure laine”

    The point is……it won’t be up to them.

  64. juli….

    YOu miss my point.

    I don’t care if Quebecer’s agree with the plan or not. I think the rest of the Country has had enough of the petulant behaviour shown by the “pure laine”

    The point is……it won’t be up to them.

    • …ah, I missed the part where we would stop living in a democracy. My bad.

      • juli……define democracy, or at least define what it means to you?

        We've had TWO referendums to date….and the seperatists have lost both times. Yet….they're still buzzing around the Capital feeding off the rest of Canada; much like sh_t flies buzzing around a fresh steamy pile.

        The seperatists still demand they have their own country. Fine…you leave with what you came with…nothing more. That means you will have to pay for your social programs…without the help of Alberta, Ontario, and BC. No more freebies….

        Oh yeah….and you'll be stuck with Gilles Duceppe….formerly of the Marxist Party of Canada.

        Have fun……Quebec would be Greece inside of 10 years. And by then….the ROC won't want anything to do with you.

    • Well said. And exactly right. And if these whiny separatists think that it will be up to them, a little thing called the Canadian military will be sent in to defend the integrity of Canadian territory and to pointedly remind them that, No, it's not up to them.
      Unless of course the weak-kneed Liberals happen to be in power at the time. In that case, eastern parts of Ontario and all of "officially bilingual" New Brunswick would probably be handed over to the separatists as a parting gift before they go.

  65. Where to start? If you want to know what we have gained from broadly “liberal“ policies than you just have to compare how people live now with how they did before the welfare state introduced a social safety net (`the ground under our feet`as Ignatieff called it) to tame some of the more destructive forces of unregulated capitalism. Just look at things like life expectancy, health indicators, average income. income inequality, etc. What Neocons have been doing for a couple of decades now is trying to reverse all that supposedly in a return to the golden age of the 1950`s-60s (when of course the welfare state was already in place and expanding).

  66. You say the only job of the government is to stay out of the way of businesses. Sorry no. The job of the government is to represent and defend the interests of its citizens. There's a lot more to that than just `creating the economic conditions for businesses to flouirish“. In fact often government needs to intervene precisely to create those conditions you claim to value so much. For example Canadian businesses benefit from a public health care system (compared to the situation in the U.S.); our baking sector benefited from being well-regulated; our GDP benefits from having a relatively strong public education system, etc.

  67. In fairness, what is HARPER's position on funding for a Quebec NHL arena? Is he pro, or con?

  68. an opposition is supposed to represent more than just one province

    Says who?

    An opposition party can run on any platform they darned well please. They can represent all the provinces, or three guys in a basement. They can stand for a more centralized and powerful government or the can counsel anarchy, and government by the principle of survival of the fittest.

    Just because you're opposed to the perspective from which an opposition party opposes the government doesn't make them not an opposition party.

  69. Really?

    It was also clear there was no deal before the election.

    Can you explain how the driving force behind the coalition "would be kept silent"?

    (I am going to make an offer they can't refuse is not available either)

    Reminds of those criticism by those of the "election every four years" brigade.

  70. If Quebecers as a whole have the right to determine by majority vote whether to separate from Canada, then by extension the residents of regions within Quebec ought to be accorded the same right to separate from Quebec and to remain within Canada. The areas of Quebec that have been mentioned as likely to choose to remain in Canada include English-speaking municipalities on the western part of the Island of Montreal, Northern Quebec, the Eastern Townships, and the Pontiac region in the Outaouais.

  71. If Quebecers as a whole have the right to determine by majority vote whether to separate from Canada, then by extension the residents of regions within Quebec ought to be accorded the same right to separate from Quebec and to remain within Canada. The areas of Quebec that have been mentioned as likely to choose to remain in Canada include English-speaking municipalities on the western part of the Island of Montreal, Northern Quebec, the Eastern Townships, and the Pontiac region in the Outaouais.

    • Absolutely. More to the point, the RoC ought to be able, by majority vote, to separate from Quebec.

  72. I am impressed the Conservatives are on the hook for a storm in 1998 before their party was ever created.

    I can only hope all 77 MPs on your team are allowed to show up and vote up or down pending the polling numbers (of course)

  73. Mark:

    Bingo!!

  74. Mark:

    Bingo!!

  75. Absolutely. More to the point, the RoC ought to be able, by majority vote, to separate from Quebec.

  76. Nice try to claim benefits of technology and free market capitalism as those of the welfare state. The welfare state only slowed down our economic growth, it never helps it. We have these things today DESPITE "liberal" policies, not because of them.

  77. A public health care system does help business flourish, as does a well regulated banking sector and strong public education. So you didnt show that hollimn was wrong, you just further emphasized his point.

  78. A public health care system does help business flourish, as does a well regulated banking sector and strong public education. So you didnt show that hollimn was wrong, you just further emphasized his point.

  79. I hate when people do this myself, so I apologize, but there's an error of language (possibly more like a typo) in the comment that I feel compelled to point out. You mean to say that you think this is a "moot point" not a "mute" point.

  80. I think, given the controversy surrounding the previous coalition fiasco, the Bloc's formal participation in any future coalition is a moot (not "mute") point. If the Libs and Dippers can't muster a majority between them, that particular coalition won't likely happen.

    And I would be careful about condemning the Liberals for being "so desperate to stay in power they would give them whatever they want", until we see how Harper handles the demand. There are seven Quebec City seats in play and Harper may be eying them pretty desperately himself.

  81. One would have to read the articles to know for sure of course, and I haven't, but the word "suggests" in the first headline suggests to me that Ignatief said something that has been INTERPRETED by the NP as IMPLYING that he's OK with the funding, whereas the second headline suggests that Ignatieff ACTUALLY SAID that he's not. So it is possible that it really is the HEADLINES that are inconsistent, not Ignatieff's position.

  82. You are right, my lord.

    Keep on defending your point of view by insisting that my arguments are solely based upon personal preference. Of course, my lord, it is most logical indeed that one province could be able to represent federalism, and that federal politics can be about one province's interest, or -hell, why not – can be about three guys in a basement.

    But how do you square such argument with the fact that federal taxes must be paid? You better have a talk with the courts soon, because tax season is upon us. If a federal system cannot be based on something held collectively, why then would our tax laws be based on such silly notion of federalism and collective understanding thereof?

    I'm so tired of people wanting to miss the point of discussion by playing the reductionist game forever. I really don't care for playing the reductionist kind of game.

  83. …ah, I missed the part where we would stop living in a democracy. My bad.

  84. Money for nothing and the cheques for free.

  85. Easy – if the Bloc broke the deal, they would have to remove support of the coalition, and there would be an election. See? Democracy in action. Neat, eh.

  86. so just blowing smoke earlier?

    "it was made quite clear they would be silent for two years."

    I do remember Layton stating he had something to keep the Separatists in line. It is a pity the media never followed up on that either.

    I curious what terms were negotiated for their cooperation that were not made public. I am glad the Bloc have put begun to advertise their price.

  87. I only made reference to the headlines. I was not prepared to believe that he said one thing to one reporter, and the exact opposite to the other. I am more prepared to believe that he chose language that inadvertently led (was expressly designed to lead?) each in the audience to hear what s/he wanted to hear.

  88. I'm not sure I understand why the fact that we live in a federal system and pay federal taxes implies that opposition parties shouldn't argue that we shouldn't live in a federal system and shouldn't pay federal taxes. My only qualm with your post is that you seem to imply that the Bloc is not an opposition party because you disagree with the nature of their opposition.

  89. Conservatives and Bloc Québécois have formed a majority government. According to Wikipedia:

    “The Bloc Québécois is a federal political party in Canada devoted to

    … the protection of Quebec's interests on a federal level
    … the promotion of its sovereignty
    … seeks to create the conditions necessary for the political secession of Quebec from Canada
    … campaigns actively only within the province during federal elections.“

    As part of a majority coalition government, Quebec has power, while Macleans.ca (Sept.24, 2010) publishes: “Quebec: The most corrupt province”.

    Obvious here is the political pressure to (a) yield to financial demands or (b) be threatened with another secession vote. Whatever financial outcome the gravy train ultimately creates, to be fair to the rest of Canada in future:

    – any federal political party should be elected by vote from the entire country to represent all of us (and not by a single province the party is exclusively elected from and “devoted to”); or

    – to counter-balance, the Atlantic region, Ontario (who has a larger population than Quebec), Prairies and BC should have federal representatives in Ottawa elected solely by regional voters, too, who stay behind with Quebec and tend regional provincial interests other than Quebec`s during federal compromise and decision-making discussions.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bloc_Qu%C3%A9b%C3%A9

  90. Conservatives and Bloc Québécois have formed a majority government. According to Wikipedia:

    “The Bloc Québécois is a federal political party in Canada devoted to

    … the protection of Quebec's interests on a federal level
    … the promotion of its sovereignty
    … seeks to create the conditions necessary for the political secession of Quebec from Canada
    … campaigns actively only within the province during federal elections.“

    As part of a majority coalition government, Quebec has power, while Macleans.ca (Sept.24, 2010) publishes: “Quebec: The most corrupt province”.

    Obvious here is the political pressure to (a) yield to financial demands or (b) be threatened with another secession vote. Whatever financial outcome the gravy train ultimately creates, to be fair to the rest of Canada in future:

    – any federal political party should be elected by vote from the entire country to represent all of us (and not by a single province the party is exclusively elected from and “devoted to”); or

    – to counter-balance, the Atlantic region, Ontario (who has a larger population than Quebec), Prairies and BC should have federal representatives in Ottawa elected solely by regional voters, too, who stay behind with Quebec and tend regional provincial interests other than Quebec`s during federal compromise and decision-making discussions.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bloc_Qu%C3%A9b%C3%A9

  91. Psiclone had a good point. This is good stuff for all 3 parties except for the bloc.

    Gilles has shown his cards, the game is still new and he is going all in with a pair of deuces. Unless I am missing something, next time you look at the French translation for idiot in a dictionary, you will probably see his picture. Some separatist will probably have quite the raise in blood pressure. Even Jean Charest told them today to stop helping.

    Not making waves on the French media (actually, they were pretty quick at burying this story deep): translation: what an idiot.

    He is either very sick, in which case someone should get him medical care ASAP or he is a plant from one of the other federal party.

  92. Psiclone had a good point. This is good stuff for all 3 parties except for the bloc.

    Gilles has shown his cards, the game is still new and he is going all in with a pair of deuces. Unless I am missing something, next time you look at the French translation for idiot in a dictionary, you will probably see his picture. Some separatist will probably have quite the raise in blood pressure. Even Jean Charest told them today to stop helping.

    Not making waves on the French media (actually, they were pretty quick at burying this story deep): translation: what an idiot.

    He is either very sick, in which case someone should get him medical care ASAP or he is a plant from one of the other federal party.

  93. Well, at least we know what it will cost for the "Liberals" to garner coalition support from the Separatists. Other than that, who cares what the Separatist leader is whining about. Duceppe is a provocateur, playing to the tribe.

  94. Well, at least we know what it will cost for the "Liberals" to garner coalition support from the Separatists. Other than that, who cares what the Separatist leader is whining about. Duceppe is a provocateur, playing to the tribe.

  95. So Gilles wants five billion from Harper for support.How much does the Bloc want to support a coalition government .What is the agreed price that Ignatieff and Layton have already agreed to.

  96. So Gilles wants five billion from Harper for support.How much does the Bloc want to support a coalition government .What is the agreed price that Ignatieff and Layton have already agreed to.

  97. 'Seven Quebec City seats in play' are not worth the hundreds of seats the PM would lose across the rest of the country if Harper ever dared cave to the demands of this treasonous bunch. Which, of course, the PM won't do.
    On the other hand, telling these blackmailing clowns in no uncertain terms to stuff their demands could pick him up a few more seats in Ontario and B.C.

  98. Ironically that song is now banned by the CRTC, or is that the punch line?

  99. Well said. And exactly right. And if these whiny separatists think that it will be up to them, a little thing called the Canadian military will be sent in to defend the integrity of Canadian territory and to pointedly remind them that, No, it's not up to them.
    Unless of course the weak-kneed Liberals happen to be in power at the time. In that case, eastern parts of Ontario and all of "officially bilingual" New Brunswick would probably be handed over to the separatists as a parting gift before they go.

  100. As soon as Quebec has separated, they can go to Obama and ask if he will build a new arena for them in Quebec City……..

  101. As soon as Quebec has separated, they can go to Obama and ask if he will build a new arena for them in Quebec City……..

  102. This is what I would do: This time around I would make sure the separatist-whiing crowd within Quebed gets really, really upset by the reaction of ROC. If they then publically cry out for separation, again!!, the ROC will simply say: OK, we want you to separate.

    Because you know, in the past, it has always been the ROC who became afraid and thereby kept giving in to demands. Let's see this time around how scared the majority of Quebeckers can become.

  103. This is what I would do: This time around I would make sure the separatist-whiing crowd within Quebed gets really, really upset by the reaction of ROC. If they then publically cry out for separation, again!!, the ROC will simply say: OK, we want you to separate.

    Because you know, in the past, it has always been the ROC who became afraid and thereby kept giving in to demands. Let's see this time around how scared the majority of Quebeckers can become.

  104. juli……define democracy, or at least define what it means to you?

    We've had TWO referendums to date….and the seperatists have lost both times. Yet….they're still buzzing around the Capital feeding off the rest of Canada; much like sh_t flies buzzing around a fresh steamy pile.

    The seperatists still demand they have their own country. Fine…you leave with what you came with…nothing more. That means you will have to pay for your social programs…without the help of Alberta, Ontario, and BC. No more freebies….

    Oh yeah….and you'll be stuck with Gilles Duceppe….formerly of the Marxist Party of Canada.

    Have fun……Quebec would be Greece inside of 10 years. And by then….the ROC won't want anything to do with you.

  105. It's just Ignatieff flip-flopping again. And by the way, I am not aware of or seen any media report that Harper has said he would support an arena for Quebec City. It's all media fabrication.

  106. New fighter jets, anyone? That's kind of funny too!

  107. New fighter jets, anyone? That's kind of funny too!

  108. I don't speak for Harper but I understanding is the government wants more private funding. Its quite simple if you listen.

  109. Gilles is setting up for a separation vote again. He is telling his people, this time it is assured. With the Cadre of the 5 Western premiers and his vote gives up the mandatory 6 provincial agreements for a separation.

    Both the Wild Rose Party and the Alberta Conservatives are saying they want to do away with the Balance of Payments. Again, with this club they can do just that and that will add fuel to Gilles quest.

    These are Dangerous political times! This election will be the most important in Canadian History!

    Link to the nuts and bolts of the plot: http://albertathedetails.blogspot.com/2010/12/can

    Link to accurate speculation of what we may expect from it: http://albertathedetails.blogspot.com/2011/01/con

  110. Gilles is setting up for a separation vote again. He is telling his people, this time it is assured. With the Cadre of the 5 Western premiers and his vote gives up the mandatory 6 provincial agreements for a separation.

    Both the Wild Rose Party and the Alberta Conservatives are saying they want to do away with the Balance of Payments. Again, with this club they can do just that and that will add fuel to Gilles quest.

    These are Dangerous political times! This election will be the most important in Canadian History!

    Link to the nuts and bolts of the plot: http://albertathedetails.blogspot.com/2010/12/can

    Link to accurate speculation of what we may expect from it: http://albertathedetails.blogspot.com/2011/01/con

    • Blogspot nonsense.

  111. Just wish all parties would stop catering to the Bloc(heads). Any party tha relies on them for support is supporting seperatists. Do they as Members of Parliament have to take oaths of loyalty to
    the Queen, the Constitution or anything else? They once were Her Majesties Loyal Opposition – what a joke.

  112. Just wish all parties would stop catering to the Bloc(heads). Any party tha relies on them for support is supporting seperatists. Do they as Members of Parliament have to take oaths of loyalty to
    the Queen, the Constitution or anything else? They once were Her Majesties Loyal Opposition – what a joke.

  113. If it's all out in the open, no one can equate it to the sponsorship scandal…I think.

  114. If it's all out in the open, no one can equate it to the sponsorship scandal…I think.

  115. Give them a bouncing cheque

  116. Give them a bouncing cheque

  117. Blogspot nonsense.

  118. Voter apathy in Canada is what put the Conservatives in power across the map enabling them to do this thing. In Alberta just 22% of the registered voters voted for Conservatives and that gave them a sweeping majority.

    If Canadians would see this coming election for what it is and the huge changes that will result from it (none of them good) perhaps they would decide it is time to walk to the polls and vote!

  119. Voter apathy in Canada is what put the Conservatives in power across the map enabling them to do this thing. In Alberta just 22% of the registered voters voted for Conservatives and that gave them a sweeping majority.

    If Canadians would see this coming election for what it is and the huge changes that will result from it (none of them good) perhaps they would decide it is time to walk to the polls and vote!

  120. Hey, I know.

    How about Quebec gets industrious like Alberta does, and establishes their own viable gas industry, and instead spreads
    5 Billion and more in transfer payments around to the rest of Canada instead as a way to give their share back? It's hard times for everyone. Pull your weight.

  121. Hey, I know.

    How about Quebec gets industrious like Alberta does, and establishes their own viable gas industry, and instead spreads
    5 Billion and more in transfer payments around to the rest of Canada instead as a way to give their share back? It's hard times for everyone. Pull your weight.

  122. funny the in thing now is to put the government against the wall and demand demand demand.kind of like blackmail but not really! special interest group[ and religious types are wanting payback and that is a gross despicable way to do business! gawd! do these guys ever determine for themselves how they look in the public eye? no false pride to speak of just grab grab what they can for themselves!

  123. funny the in thing now is to put the government against the wall and demand demand demand.kind of like blackmail but not really! special interest group[ and religious types are wanting payback and that is a gross despicable way to do business! gawd! do these guys ever determine for themselves how they look in the public eye? no false pride to speak of just grab grab what they can for themselves!

  124. The problem with elections in Canada is that elections in Canada don't matter anymore. In order for the Liberals to have any chance of winning, they have to have a party leader that speaks French. The problem there is that the country is tired of Liberal party leaders that speak French. Then, when the Conservatives are in power, they need help from the separatists in Quebec to keep the Liberals at bay. The only problem there is that Bloc has never done anything for the Conservatives but hand them the knife with which to cut their own throats. The only thing Lucien Bouchard ever did for Brian Mulrooney was force him into trying to push off Meech Lake and the Charlottetown Accord on a very recalcitrant Canada without adding the separatist cause. Lord Durham predicted in his 1837 report to Queen Victoria that the French in Quebec would someday be swamped because of immigration. The problem is that few countries have historicaly been as anti-immigration as Canada. Canada has allowed Quebec to have Bill 101, protecting "language rights," because both the Anglophones and the Francophones fear immigration. That's why elections don't matter in Canada. If Canada let shopkeepers from Asia and the Middle East swamp Quebec, then elections might matter.

  125. The problem with elections in Canada is that elections in Canada don't matter anymore. In order for the Liberals to have any chance of winning, they have to have a party leader that speaks French. The problem there is that the country is tired of Liberal party leaders that speak French. Then, when the Conservatives are in power, they need help from the separatists in Quebec to keep the Liberals at bay. The only problem there is that Bloc has never done anything for the Conservatives but hand them the knife with which to cut their own throats. The only thing Lucien Bouchard ever did for Brian Mulrooney was force him into trying to push off Meech Lake and the Charlottetown Accord on a very recalcitrant Canada without adding the separatist cause. Lord Durham predicted in his 1837 report to Queen Victoria that the French in Quebec would someday be swamped because of immigration. The problem is that few countries have historicaly been as anti-immigration as Canada. Canada has allowed Quebec to have Bill 101, protecting "language rights," because both the Anglophones and the Francophones fear immigration. That's why elections don't matter in Canada. If Canada let shopkeepers from Asia and the Middle East swamp Quebec, then elections might matter.

  126. Duceppe is in a position that most politicians would love to be into. He leads a party that holds 10% of the seats in Canada and over 40% of the seats in Quebec. He only has to worry about pleasing one province. He only has to worry about the problems in one province. He can sit back and watch how the govt spends its money in other areas of the country and then submit his list. And that's what he is doing now.
    If Harper goes along with the demands, Duceppe looks good.
    if Harper does not go along with the demands, Duceppe still looks good for asking.
    He is making a good political move and one that would not be made by any other province, except maybe for Alta.

  127. Duceppe is in a position that most politicians would love to be into. He leads a party that holds 10% of the seats in Canada and over 40% of the seats in Quebec. He only has to worry about pleasing one province. He only has to worry about the problems in one province. He can sit back and watch how the govt spends its money in other areas of the country and then submit his list. And that's what he is doing now.
    If Harper goes along with the demands, Duceppe looks good.
    if Harper does not go along with the demands, Duceppe still looks good for asking.
    He is making a good political move and one that would not be made by any other province, except maybe for Alta.

  128. Don’t know about the rest of you Canadian/voter/taxpayers but our families and friends from coast to coast have had ENOUGH of the Bloc party’s blackmailing extortionist tactics. Their illegal demands via blackmail should no longer be tolerated by hard working overtaxed people of Canada. It’s time to end the power one Province has over our country. Liberal and NDP parties are in bed with separatists and traitors. Take your Country back before it’s too late.

  129. Don’t know about the rest of you Canadian/voter/taxpayers but our families and friends from coast to coast have had ENOUGH of the Bloc party’s blackmailing extortionist tactics. Their illegal demands via blackmail should no longer be tolerated by hard working overtaxed people of Canada. It’s time to end the power one Province has over our country. Liberal and NDP parties are in bed with separatists and traitors. Take your Country back before it’s too late.

  130. Funny thing about that. Quebec voters keep putting the Bloc in, but keep voting separatism down.

    Perhaps you should think about what that might mean.

    Personally, I think it means the Quebec people are pretty happy with the performance of their representatives, *and* want to stay in Canada.

Sign in to comment.