It’s all in the timing (II)


Glen Pearson on another moment from yesterday, this one just before Question Period.

Today’s developments almost bordered on irreverence. Prior to Ignatieff giving his statement, another Conservative clone rose in the House to speak of his unsuitability for leadership. Then, to everyone’s surprise, the Liberal leader got up and delivered a deeply reflective statement on the death of the three Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan yesterday. The House grew silent, not just because of the subject because of Ignatieff’s beautiful phrasing and heartfelt delivery. He reminded all of us that it was we who sent these soldiers to war. He spoke of the deep despondency and the burden faced by the soldiers’ families and that such a load should never be faced by them alone, but also by those very politicians who sent the soldiers in harms way. Put simply, it was a beautiful tribute and received the standing ovation it deserved.

Not sooner had Ignatieff sat down that another Conservative stood up for the last statement before QP and unleashed his torrent at the Liberal leader. To people of finer senses it was jarring. I know that Conservative. He’s a decent man and wants to help others. But he was told to get up and read a speech written by someone else. The entire House just wanted him to sit down and be quiet. His intervention was highly unsuitable and out if place. During one of our finer moments in the House, a man permitted himself to become a patsy for the party and demeaned a meaningful moment and the soldiers’ memory in the process.

For the record, here’s that exchange.

Mr. Michael Ignatieff (Etobicoke—Lakeshore, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, I rise in sorrow to salute the bravery and devotion to Canada of the three soldiers who died in Afghanistan yesterday. Dennis Raymond Brown, Dany Olivier Fortin and Kenneth Chad O’Quinn gave their lives to protect fellow soldiers and Afghan civilians. They had defused one roadside bomb when their lives were claimed by another.

We in the House bear the burden of sending these soldiers to do their duty, so we must share the burden of sorrow now falling upon their families. We honour these families and we grieve with them in their hour of desolation. Our soldiers in Afghanistan must know that in our respect for their courage and dedication, all divisions in this House are stilled and we rise in common tribute.

Mr. James Bezan (Selkirk—Interlake, CPC): Mr. Speaker, recently on VOCM Radio in Newfoundland and Labrador, Liberal Senator George Baker said, “The day is coming”. He was referring to the day that would see the creation of the Bloc Newfoundland and Labrador party. He even went on to say the party would run in the next election.

With the most senior Liberal parliamentarian advocating for the creation of the Bloc Newfoundland and Labrador party, it is clear that the Liberal leader tolerates these views in the Liberal Party. The Liberals were willing to make a deal that would see the Bloc Québécois have a seat at the governing table and now their most senior parliamentarian is advocating for the creation of a Bloc Newfoundland and Labrador party modelled after the separatist Bloc Québécois.

It is clear. The Conservative Party is the party of national unity; the Liberal Party is not.




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It’s all in the timing (II)

  1. Even sadder is the fact that the other Conservative clone to which Mr. Pearson referred gave pretty much the exact discourse on the Bloc Newfoundland and Labrador.

    So not only are the Conservatives guilty of bad timing and low ball tactics but they are also guilty of unoriginality.

  2. I guess this would be in bad taste if one were to assume the Conservatives cared more for the troops than that of other puppets at the parties disposal. They talk a poor talk on the file, and the bad taste of bile such as this gets lost in the mix that is $hit-mouth disease, an unreformable disease run rampent in what was once a national conservative party.

    “The Conservative Party is the party of national unity” – which nation are we talking about? The Conservatives have even turned their backs towards the only part of this nation that would blindly follow them into Hell. The route to a majority isn’t through Alberta. It’s through the nation of Quebec, a lesser amount through the nation of Newfoundland and Labrador and trying to manage the bribing of the other provinces with Ontario’s money (uh oh! now it’s a HUGE deficit for Ontario to pay off in the next few decades since Ontario is being decimated).

  3. Is it worth it for these supposedly “decent” Cons? Were their souls to burdensome? Why have they completely abdicated their decency and respectability to follow such a path of divisiveness and hate? Do they not realize how small and petty they appear? When they look back, as any one who ages in the natural world is wont to do over time, will they be proud of how they handled the power handed to them in a democracy? Any self-aware person who is basically decent will have a hard time keeping the shame down for the rest of their lives. Their behaviour will be remembered, if not by the public at large then by themselves.

    • Well said. Let’s hope that any member of that party who retains a shred of common decency will read this and reflect upon it.

  4. Mr. James Bevan could simply have said no, he would not dishonour his own dignity by making such remarks. Or he could have listened to Mr Ignatieff’s remarks, and decided at that moment was not the right one to deliver his ridiculous partian remarks.

    But he didn’t, did he? He decided to do as he was told, no matter how undigified or inappropriate for the moment.

    • Just following orders. Ahem…

    • This is the thing, isn’t it. I’m sure (well, I’m at least hopeful) that if whomever gave him his marching orders could have spoken to him immediately prior to his rising in the House, he might have said, “uh, maybe right now isn’t such a good time for this.” I’m hopeful any other party’s member would have enough of a head of their shoulder to realize, for themselves, that those particular words, at that particular time, would not come across as desired.

      But (it seems to me from this viewpoint) the Conservative MPs are specifically encouraged NOT TO THINK! They have other people for that. No, an MPs job is to fill a seat, and read the script handed to them when told to do so.

      It saddens me to think of all the empty vessels my fellow countrymates were duped into sending to the House. I mean to say, these men and women might have been something to be proud of if they were given a chance to use the brains I assume they had earlier on in the process of becoming a Conservative MP.

      But then again, there’s Gary Goodyear. Kind of ruins that whole line of reasoning.

  5. “We in the House bear the burden of sending these soldiers to do their duty, so we must share the burden of sorrow now falling upon their families. We honour these families and we grieve with them in their hour of desolation. Our soldiers in Afghanistan must know that in our respect for their courage and dedication, all divisions in this House are stilled and we rise in common tribute.”

    Well said.

    I am troubled by the CPC overtly scripted behavior. James Bezan should have instantly realized what had just transpired and said something else. Anything else really.

  6. Since the Coalition of the Left seems to have finished in the Ditch – at least – that the message I seem to be reading from Mr. Ignatieff – is there any chance of a Scism on the Right?
    I see former Red Tories (?) like Joe Clark – openly taking shots at Mr. Harper’s policies – and other former core members e.g. Solberg / Emerson (and maybe MacKay either bailing or blatantly looking for ways out)….could it be that Mr. Ignatieff’s strategy in moving the Liberal party further right is to provide a safe haven for those on the other side of the aisle who wish to do a Stronach….?

  7. OK SH, i asked yesterday why? Why these petty little shots when almost nobody in the country is watching, listening, or even cares about this stuff. Now it’s obvious why. There is a pressing need to define Iggy because yr scared, he didn’t just fall flat on his face as you [ and i ] thought might happen. So now you have some real competion. That you chose do it in this manner with no regard or respect says volumes about you. So carry on. The picture you paint is not a pretty one, yr right. Unfortunately for you it’s turning out to be a self portrait, and an unflattering one at that!
    Aren’t there any conservatives left with the good sense and necessary pair to give this loathsome PM the deep sixing he so richly deserves?

  8. There’s enormous pressure on them. Haven’t seen a poll recently, but the numbers must be horrendous, especially in Ontario. Can’t imagine what’ll happen when June/July rolls around. Parliament Hill is going to be a toxic dump.

    • “Can’t imagine what’ll happen when June/July rolls around.”

      My guess? Ignatieff will be into his first or second month as PM by then and the CPC leadership campaign will be just starting to gear up.

  9. Last year Jim Prentice appeared on CBC’s Politics and made a fool of himself insisiting among other things that the Liberal government had not balanced the budget. This followed an embarrassing episode where it turned out he was using a song (Money Money Money) in a press conference and ad that they did not pay to use (he was the minister responsible for copyright at the time).

    So after being put out there twice to shill the partisan stuff and getting burned, Prentice has seldom been used by PMO in this manner again. Bevan should take note.

    • sorry BEZAN. I never actually had heard of him until yesterday.

      • Neither had his consituents.

  10. Poor Iggy – first he releases the whip on the MP’s in NFLD and now a brain dead senator raises the spectre of a BLOC NFLD – then he has to buy more preparation H from sitting on the cold plastic chair in Hangar 11 with Bobby R. while he gets a photop with Obama – then rolls over on the budget and pulls a Dion by threatening a election on an imaginary slush fund. Though I give him credit for standing up to the National Enquirer ooops I mean National Geographic and actually strongly defending the oil sands and spending some time and energy out west, though the effort is appreciated it is far too little and way too late. Let’s not forget the report cards and keeping a tight leash on the Gov’t (This takes humour to hubris). I think what he needs is more fibre in his diet. I know Aaron as usual is doing his best to spin this QP session as the evil meanie CPC MP finishing his speech and daring to ask the leader about the BLOC nfld – but this is going nowhere fast as it is guilty of exactly that which it proposes If I am not misstaken this is called a ‘ tootology ‘ – the real person Aaron should be directing this statement is Gilles.

    • While it may be a useful line for Harpy to take ie., we’re the party of national unity. You, as ever go straight to the ass -end of the matter. The Q is timing – you know that great big headline you almost but didn’t quite see as you came in – and the propriety of these Qs. A tautology pretty much desribes yr postings as of late. This, i think, is called unintended irony.

      • or unironed tendony which makes about as much sense as the response – but thank you for the spellchecking ‘ tautology ‘ that’s what it was – seemed to remember it from universtity debating as common mistake … no doubt … and by the way the ass is the most intelligent part of the body as your head will take you to all sorts of places that invariably lead to no good outcome but your keyster is always there for you and rarely steers you wrong –

        • Sorry, had no idea you were sensitive to irony. I find it pretty much defines the human condition. Don’t sweat the spellcheck – i had to look it up myself, wsn’t that sure if my understanding was that clear either. This time i nailed it.

  11. 5 sentences, short ones at that. This outburst of masturbatory fawing over of Iggy bang-bang was all to do with 5 sentences. Now I grant you, after the string of incoherence from Celine, scattershot from Dithers, and the grunts from a grubby ward heeler about lack of proven criminality, pepper on steak all the while having food stuck to his chin, this may seem like the height of oratorical art. From this perspective, it looks like a climbing nobody trying to butt kiss his way into being named critic of office supplies or some such.

    At least Pearson has something to gain, Wherry’s a long shot to follow Puff Duffy to the taskless thanks.

    • Again, in one of the official languages please!

    • Wow, Peter. Time for a blood pressure check.

  12. More of the usual garbage from a predictable source.

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