Under the Sun


 

“The governing party has no consistent or explicit ideological framework. Rather, it straddles the middle and assimilates what is expedient at either, or both, sides of the centre. Opposition parties, left, right, or centre, have a problem in defining their own position because the government party occupies all desirable ground. Arguments between parties become, as a result, squabbles over details rather than arguments over direction and principles”

Ned Franks, The Parliament of Canada, 1987

 
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Under the Sun

  1. Sooooooo, it's not a new trend ; )

  2. Sooooooo, it's not a new trend ; )

  3. The Liberals have always done that, so the other two parties think they have to be extremist in order to get anywhere.

    However, Canadians don't like extremes, and prefer the middle-of-the-road.

  4. The Liberals have always done that, so the other two parties think they have to be extremist in order to get anywhere.

    However, Canadians don't like extremes, and prefer the middle-of-the-road.

    • Emily, your trolln skills are impressive. Stalking/trolling Potter online seems to be your job..

      • Cons are very confused people. It's no wonder they don't get anywhere.

        • You should know. Instead of working, she stalks….

          • Like I said, you're confused and paranoid.

            Now try to stick to the topic. I'm not it.

  5. The distance of perspective distorts, but maybe a difference is that in today's day and age nobody is proposing left wing solutions. While parties scramble for what they see as the most popular position (It was only five short years ago Stephen Harper claimed he'd rather lose an election than pull out of Afghanistan early) they inhabit a narrow strip of the centre right. Even the NDP wants to take power with a "radical" formula of Martin/Chretien levels of taxation and caps on bank fees.

  6. The distance of perspective distorts, but maybe a difference is that in today's day and age nobody is proposing left wing solutions. While parties scramble for what they see as the most popular position (It was only five short years ago Stephen Harper claimed he'd rather lose an election than pull out of Afghanistan early) they inhabit a narrow strip of the centre right. Even the NDP wants to take power with a "radical" formula of Martin/Chretien levels of taxation and caps on bank fees.

    • Huh. Here I've been wishing that Harper would have rather lost an election than piss away billions of tomorrow's wealth on the thoroughly misnomered "stimulus" brain cramp.

  7. Emily, your trolln skills are impressive. Stalking/trolling Potter online seems to be your job..

  8. Cons are very confused people. It's no wonder they don't get anywhere.

  9. You should know. Instead of working, she stalks….

  10. "We're done for, we're done-diddly done for, we're done-diddly-doodily, done diddly-doodily, done diddly-doodly, done diddly-doodily!"

    Ned Flanders, Season 5, Episode 8: "Boy-Scoutz N the Hood"

  11. "We're done for, we're done-diddly done for, we're done-diddly-doodily, done diddly-doodily, done diddly-doodly, done diddly-doodily!"

    Ned Flanders, Season 5, Episode 8: "Boy-Scoutz N the Hood"

    • "You just smarten up mister!"

      Ann Landers syndicated column circa 1951 to 2001.

  12. Like I said, you're confused and paranoid.

    Now try to stick to the topic. I'm not it.

  13. Huh. Here I've been wishing that Harper would have rather lost an election than piss away billions of tomorrow's wealth on the thoroughly misnomered "stimulus" brain cramp.

  14. God forbid the government should occupy all desirable ground, AKA listening to the people.

    While there is some truth to that statement, the underlying reality is that there really is a difference between the parties, for those who wish to look beyond the superficialities.

  15. The biggest issue in the last three changes in federal government have all been about: accountability/corruption type issues, not policy or principle type issues.

    Trudeau/Turner to Mulroney, Mulroney to Chretien, Chretien/Martin to Harper.

    And Harper is working hard at fulfilling his transitional moment in history.

  16. God forbid the government should occupy all desirable ground, AKA listening to the people.

    While there is some truth to that statement, the underlying reality is that there really is a difference between the parties, for those who wish to look beyond the superficialities.

    • I rather took "occupying all desirable ground" to mean "willing to completely reverse policy on a dime", or "willing to say whatever you'd like to hear today, and then, to say the exact opposite tomorrow if that's what you'd prefer to hear tomorrow".

      Also, while I await "real" polling on the issue, I'd be pretty shocked if, say, the Afghanistan reversal can be shown to be an example of "listening to the people". So far, I've only seen completely unscientific online "polls" but they've all had support for sticking to the original 2011 deadline in the 60s, and support for the change to the mission being brought before Parliament for a vote in the 70s. I expect the actual numbers to be more modest, but my sense is that the actual numbers would still be clear majorities in both cases.

      • I really have no idea whether most people wishes Canada to withdraw from Afghanistan or not.

        In any case, if you're claiming that most are against remaining in Afghanistan in any capacity beyond 2011, then how could you make the claim the government is occupying desirable ground? That would make it undesirable ground.

  17. The biggest issue in the last three changes in federal government have all been about: accountability/corruption type issues, not policy or principle type issues.

    Trudeau/Turner to Mulroney, Mulroney to Chretien, Chretien/Martin to Harper.

    And Harper is working hard at fulfilling his transitional moment in history.

  18. "Arguments between parties become, as a result, squabbles over details rather than arguments over direction and principles”

    Up to a point, I agree that it's same as ever was. However, the tone is completely different. Prior to 1990, say, pols use to talk about building Nation, doing things to improve our childs lives … etc. There was purpose.

    I don't think pols are trying anymore. Just power for power's sake. When Canada entered recession 18 months ago, or thereabouts, I expected Harper/Cons to propose a 10/20% reduction in MPs salaries to share the pain with constituents. Never happened. I noticed that and thought how MPs are rather squalid now, in it for themselves.

  19. "Arguments between parties become, as a result, squabbles over details rather than arguments over direction and principles”

    Up to a point, I agree that it's same as ever was. However, the tone is completely different. Prior to 1990, say, pols use to talk about building Nation, doing things to improve our childs lives … etc. There was purpose.

    I don't think pols are trying anymore. Just power for power's sake. When Canada entered recession 18 months ago, or thereabouts, I expected Harper/Cons to propose a 10/20% reduction in MPs salaries to share the pain with constituents. Never happened. I noticed that and thought how MPs are rather squalid now, in it for themselves.

    • Did you really think MPs would do that??

    • Also reading somewhere, in the MP retiring article, average term being ~7 years, got me wondering about pensions. And what the minimum required time is to get one. Whether there was a correlation. Just googled and voila. There's probably a game theoretic paper on this somewhere.

  20. Did you really think MPs would do that??

  21. You've been talking to Mr. Coyne, right ?

  22. You've been talking to Mr. Coyne, right ?

  23. I rather took "occupying all desirable ground" to mean "willing to completely reverse policy on a dime", or "willing to say whatever you'd like to hear today, and then, to say the exact opposite tomorrow if that's what you'd prefer to hear tomorrow".

    Also, while I await "real" polling on the issue, I'd be pretty shocked if, say, the Afghanistan reversal can be shown to be an example of "listening to the people". So far, I've only seen completely unscientific online "polls" but they've all had support for sticking to the original 2011 deadline in the 60s, and support for the change to the mission being brought before Parliament for a vote in the 70s. I expect the actual numbers to be more modest, but my sense is that the actual numbers would still be clear majorities in both cases.

  24. "You just smarten up mister!"

    Ann Landers syndicated column circa 1951 to 2001.

  25. Also reading somewhere, in the MP retiring article, average term being ~7 years, got me wondering about pensions. And what the minimum required time is to get one. Whether there was a correlation. Just googled and voila. There's probably a game theoretic paper on this somewhere.

  26. So there's nothing new under the sun. Are we to assume that all of Canada's modern governments are guiltyof, or find it necessary, to be all things to all people? And wasn't this in Mulroney's time? I'm pretty sure Harper did not run on a platform of being Mulroney 2. Muroney more or less promised to not overturn the Trudeau progressive agenda , while Harper certainly did not promise to govern in the Chretien/Martin mold. Minority parliament notwithstanding, there is a significant difference.

  27. So there's nothing new under the sun. Are we to assume that all of Canada's modern governments are guiltyof, or find it necessary, to be all things to all people? And wasn't this in Mulroney's time? I'm pretty sure Harper did not run on a platform of being Mulroney 2. Muroney more or less promised to not overturn the Trudeau progressive agenda , while Harper certainly did not promise to govern in the Chretien/Martin mold. Minority parliament notwithstanding, there is a significant difference.

  28. And so the hammer hits the final nail in the coffin,

    burying forever the completely concocted radical "hidden agenda" come to take away all our rights, meme.

    A meme the media gladly parroted.

    Now Harper's TOO CENTRIST.

    Gotta love today's "progressive" media.

  29. And so the hammer hits the final nail in the coffin,

    burying forever the completely concocted radical "hidden agenda" come to take away all our rights, meme.

    A meme the media gladly parroted.

    Now Harper's TOO CENTRIST.

    Gotta love today's "progressive" media.

    • At the risk of feeding the troll:

      This is what the CPC aspires to. The question is how influential is the crazy wing of the party, and under what circumstances could it assert itself. We saw a sudden, unannounced swipe at pay equity for women which helped ignite the coalition debate, for example.

    • I don't read this as a critique postulating that the Harper government is too centrist, I read it as a critique that the Harper government has no center. Or, at the very least, that it has a center, but wait 48 hours…

    • good point.

  30. At the risk of feeding the troll:

    This is what the CPC aspires to. The question is how influential is the crazy wing of the party, and under what circumstances could it assert itself. We saw a sudden, unannounced swipe at pay equity for women which helped ignite the coalition debate, for example.

  31. I don't read this as a critique postulating that the Harper government is too centrist, I read it as a critique that the Harper government has no center. Or, at the very least, that it has a center, but wait 48 hours…

  32. I really have no idea whether most people wishes Canada to withdraw from Afghanistan or not.

    In any case, if you're claiming that most are against remaining in Afghanistan in any capacity beyond 2011, then how could you make the claim the government is occupying desirable ground? That would make it undesirable ground.

  33. good point.