Holding the government to account


Like Rob Merrifield earlier this week, here is the question Conservative MP John Weston asked this morning of the parliamentary secretary for the Minister of International Trade on behalf of his constituents in West Vancouver—Sunshine Coast—Sea to Sky Country.

Could the parliamentary secretary please explain to the House how the NDP views trade?


Holding the government to account

  1. Per O’Brien and Bosc, during Question Period a member should “ask a question that is within the administrative responsibility of the government or of the individual Minister addressed.”

    NDP policy is clearly not within the administrative purview of the government.

    Why is the Speaker not ruling these questions out of order?  Really.

    • When you consider the lapdog Governor General at the Mission Accomplished extravaganza this week, the Speaker  is also, surely, is in the PM”s back pocket as well. 

  2. What a bunch of doofuses (doofi?). Do they they expect anyone to take their clown show seriously as a government?

  3. It would appear this MP believes his constituents are too dumb to ask the NPD itself for its position on trade.  And we need 30 more of these puppets?

  4. Maybe he’s hoping for a parlour trick to pass the time?

    “Can the minister tell the House the card the NDP is holding in its hand? I’m thinking of a number between 6 and 36, can the Minister …”

  5. Excellent question!!!   Here the B.C. NDP demand there be no more selling of raw logs, only finished lumber.  It is called supply and demand or having a market to sell your goods.   But I suppose if you stamp your feet and yell loud enough, all this will magically appear.

    • So a majority government has to abuse its privileges in the House to make their point? Pathetic, transparent, and ridiculous.

      • With such a large number of activists and current/former union reps making up the ranks of the NDP, there appears to be a need to ask if they know anything about trade.

        • Harper’s insistence on maintaining supply management isn’t helping us enter into trade agreements. 

          • I agree.  It’s actually one of the demands of the Occupy Vancouver protestors that I agree with — i.e, scrapping supply management.

            Then in the next breath, the Occupy Vancouver protestors want us to nuke NAFTA and the WTO.  Consistency isn’t their strong suit iether . . .

          • I don’t know about you, but I have a higher standard for the PM than I do from a random bunch of protesters.

        • I see…so they’re going to stand up in the House and ask one of Harper’s sock puppets about NDP policy on trade? That’ll get them the unvarnished truth, sort of like asking a Sun news flack to describe the CBC’s news policy.


          • So what is their trade policy?  NDP MPs asking the US to hold off on the Keystone XL is good policy?   Activists in charge?

          • I haven’t a clue what their trade policy is. And I still won’t know it after the clowns in the government have finished their idiotic little charade. In fact, I’ll be far less likely to know it.

            And that’s the issue here…the government’s abuse of procedure, not the NDP’s policy on trade.

          • You seem to be under the mistaken impression that the object of question period is to allow the government to hold the opposition to account.

    • How could you live in B.C. and not know how much forest products exports contributes to the economy?  While Harper dicks around with his China policy we’ve gone ahead and formed a growing trade relationship, no thanks to him. 

      • B.C. forestry has been courting China since at least the ’90’s when I worked in the industry.  My point is China wants a small percentage of raw logs along with finished product so that is what we sell them.  Are you going to tell the customer sorry you can’t have this you have to take that?

        • So nobody in the world sells boards eh?

          Just raw logs.

        • Leo is that true. I’m a BCer too and my layman’sunderstanding is that almost ALL the coastal logs are going out raw – this has had a disasterous effect on the economies of small mill towns. It is a brutal policy, one that simply accepts that higher profit margins for logging companies and lower overheads associated with supplying wood to local mills is now the new bottom line. One more example of the “free market” not being cost free at all unless you happen to be a logging company.

  6. Cons are happier in Opposition anyway….that way they can criticize and never actually have to do anything.

    • Yes, sort of like you.

      • I’ve been elected kiddo…which is more than you’ve been

        Now stick to the topic please.

  7. I thought stuff like this was ruled out of order last year. Of course I also thought that the Harper Conservatives could go a day or two without acting like psychotic children. Silly me for expecting so much.

  8. Facepalm.

  9. I’m beginning to think, that since the Harper Government thrives on having someone to abuse, the very best tactic for all the opposition parties could be just to pack up, leave the House of Commons, and go home. 

    Votes on anything are fixed for the next few years. The number of citizens who pay attention to the House of Commons is negligible. There is no one to hear the opposition message. Take the opposition message to the people. 

  10. On the other hand, at least when they ask themselves these questions they listen to the answer they make up.

  11. What is going through the minds of these backbenchers as they read the pre written PMO questions and comments. They must have been proud, their families and friends were proud when they were elected Members of Parliament and now they are reduced to this pathetic helplessness and shame of being used as mindless puppets. Do any of them ever refuse?
    Does the PMO and Harper realize that if one of these people or an equally neutered Cabinet Minister ever actually resigned it would be catastrophic. They haver the power to count for something, but not the backbone.

    • Very well said.

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