The Commons: Take your pick

What might you have learned from the debate?

First and foremost, apologies are probably due to Robert from Newmarket, Veselka from Mississauga, Sam from Mount Pearl, Jade from Montreal, and Patti from New Glasgow—the Average Canadians tasked with leading this debate. Each asked good, worthy questions. All were more or less ignored after about 30 seconds of the ensuing discussion. Only Len from Gibsons, who asked about justice policy, seemed to receive something like a proper and full statement of positions—an odd twist given how insipid the discussion of crime is often made to be.

So perhaps Len is to be declared the winner of this first debate of the 41st general election.

Alas, you cannot vote for Len. You must pick—in at least an existential sense—one of these men. So what might you have learned from these two hours? More specifically, what might you have seen of these men?

Mr. Duceppe was the mumbling, sarcastic troublemaker in the corner. He delighted in reminding Mr. Harper of their discussions in 2004 about cooperating to replace Paul Martin’s government. He gripped both sides of the lectern, begged incredulity at every opportunity and swaggered with a certain take-it-or-leave-it air.

Mr. Layton was smiling and self-righteous, eager to scold Mr. Ignatieff and Mr. Harper, well-stocked with a choice of one-liners to ensure he was not left out of the late night newscasts. Asking Mr. Harper what had become of him—”You’ve become what you used to oppose. What happened to you?”—he made a convincing show of seeming truly saddened.

Mr. Ignatieff began like a man who had been waiting a long while for this moment. After months of attack ads, after months of seething at Mr. Harper from the left side of the House, Mr. Ignatieff had his first opportunity on the national stage in prime time to say what he thought needed to be said and refute what he felt needed refutation. And with so much to say, he could barely figure out at first where to start. So at the outset he hesitated and stumbled and struggled to get his words out. He settled slightly as he went, but he was still the most eager for a fight, moving around in his spot, gesturing with his fists, staring down Mr. Harper with that impressive brow. He dared at one point to put his right hand on his hip. Nationwide, image consultants screamed in unison at their television screens.

Mr. Harper sought apparently to look past his counterparts. When answering questions, he spoke directly to the camera in front of him, directly to the people he hopes will be more forgiving. He adopted a pleading tone, begging for reasonableness. He only passingly made reference to the dreaded coalition he otherwise laments at every opportunity. He never once voiced his party’s frequent questioning of Mr. Ignatieff’s patriotism.

Perhaps what distinguished him most was his gall. It is perhaps what most distinguishes his entire time in power—a willingness to stand in his place and dare his opponents to call him on it.

He lamented that different versions of the Auditor General’s report were circulating around Ottawa, never minding that his own side is the source for one of those drafts. He reported that the Canadian Labour Congress supported his government’s most recent budget, never minding that the CLC has deemed such claims “misleading.” He managed to lament for partisan bickering without descending into giggles. He dabbled in subjective constitutional theory, claiming that only the party that wins the most seats gets to govern, despite his not seeming to have believed this until he became prime minister. (When Mr. Ignatieff dared not agree with him entirely, Mr. Harper’s backroom operatives screamed that here was proof of a coalition.)

If Mr. Harper slipped once it was in reply to a list of democratic abuses alleged by Mr. Ignatieff. “I don’t accept the truth of these attacks,” Mr. Harper pleaded.

Indeed.

The contempt of which his government was found guilty three weeks ago was referred to here as “so-called”— a simple matter of Mr. Harper having fewer votes in the House of Commons than the opposition parties. All the more reason, apparently, to give him a majority.

Parliament, Mr. Harper said at one point, was not a court of law. In fact, and in fairness to Mr. Harper, it is not. It is actually more powerful than that. The only power higher is the direct vote of the people. Indeed, Mr. Harper sought here to suggest that all of it was now placed before the population for judgment.

“We are asking Canadians to make a decision,” he said.

This was the most indisputable point made all evening. So over to you Robert, Veselka, Sam, Jade, Patti and Len.




Browse

The Commons: Take your pick

  1. So Ignatieff blew it eh?

    Darn

  2. So Ignatieff blew it eh?

    Darn

    • I was surprised at how devasting Layton's attacks on Ignatieff were. Iggy seemed almost shocked as his head frantically shook from side to side almost as if Layton had physically slapped him. I have to say Layton did very well.

      • Yep. Layton's attack on Ignatieff's attendance in the HoC was easily the most devastating of the night. Iggy's response: "How dare you lecture me, young man!".

    • Iggy was getting pretty theatrical at times, almost losing his temper, constant whining and physical wriggling.

      He looked un-prime-ministerial, a somewhat unstable, ranting idealogue.

      At times, he seemed only his next breath away from his own Howard Dean moment ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5FzCeV0ZFc ) except in his own bitter, cynical way.

      Sorry Liberals, I don't want Ignatieff as my Prime Minister.

  3. “I don%E2%80%99t accept the truth of these attacks”

    I like that; he doesn't deny the claims are truthful; he merely says he refuses to accept the truth.

  4. “I don't accept the truth of these attacks”

    I like that; he doesn't deny the claims are truthful; he merely says he refuses to accept the truth.

  5. “I don't accept the truth of these attacks”

    I like that; he doesn't deny the claims are truthful; he merely says he refuses to accept the truth.

    • Harper is the truth artbiter.

  6. Iggy only shows up to parliament 30 % of the time?

    Is that part of the vaunted "respect for parliament" we've been hearing from Iggy? I wonder how many of our employers would form the opinion we "respected" our place of work if we only showed up there a third of the time.

    I guess he's "just visiting" in parliament too.

  7. Iggy only shows up to parliament 30 % of the time?

    Is that part of the vaunted "respect for parliament" we've been hearing from Iggy? I wonder how many of our employers would form the opinion we "respected" our place of work if we only showed up there a third of the time.

    I guess he's "just visiting" in parliament too.

    • JMHO but there is going to be a lot of mileage out of his 'no-shows' for voting.

      Pretty stinky stuff for an attack ad, lol!!!

      • I was surprised to learn that Iggy's attendence is not only low,

        but the lowest of all MP's.

        That's quite the prize. The word that most comes to mind is:

        Poseur.

        • My understanding is that you are wrong on three counts:

          1) Assuming you believe Layton's numbers, they are wrong. Mansbridge corrected it to 59% last night
          2) His is not the lowest of all MPs, but of all leaders
          3) His attendance was low for votes, not for attendance in general

          That's my understanding. As always, I stand to be corrected.

    • Unfortunately it was a made-up stat.

    • He's been in that damned bus shaking hands all the time. What the hell do you want from him?

    • And Harper was "visiting" 37% of the time – so what say you now Chet?

  8. I was surprised at how devasting Layton's attacks on Ignatieff were. Iggy seemed almost shocked as his head frantically shook from side to side almost as if Layton had physically slapped him. I have to say Layton did very well.

  9. Bottom line: I don't think this debate changed the election dynamic one bit.

  10. Bottom line: I don't think this debate changed the election dynamic one bit.

    • I don't know about that Dennis. Vis Harper and the Libs, maybe not, but vis Layton and the Libs perhaps so. Layton looked far more the standard bearer for a movement from the left than did Iggy, and Layton landed some real haymakers on him.

      This also seems to be the emerging consensus.

      • It's an interesting point. The only thing that has made this election's result an uncertainty is bleeding of NDP support to the Liberal party. Did this debate change that? If it did, then a Conservative majority might well be in sight.

        By the way, as I'm typing this, Nanos on CTV is saying that Harper survived the debate unscathed, Layton impressed, and Iggy fell short of expectations – as low as they were.

        Personally, I thought Layton was often flip and, as usual, came across as a used car salesman. Iggy's tone and body language were awkward. Harper was cool and above the fray. Duceppe was oddly anxious and desperate – for a change.

    • This is probably true. A lot of people seem convinced that everyone else will react to it the way they themselves do, but that's just not likely to happen, especially when all the leaders pretty much behaved as they always do. So, for example, people like you might see Harper's performance as calm and statesmanlike, whereas people like me will see it as an infuriating ball of dismissive arrogance and transparent lies, but none of us are going to change our minds, because if we were going to we probably would have done so a long time ago when he was already acting more or less exactly like he did tonight. Ditto for the other leaders.

      • people like you might see Harper's performance as calm and statesmanlike, whereas people like me will see it as an infuriating ball of dismissive arrogance and transparent lies

        But that's just it. Only the Harper haters already see Harper in that light. Near majority levels of voters have not for a now unprecedented period of time for Conservatives. And, in my opinion, tonight's debate only cemented this dynamic for Harper.

        This election is about whether or not people want to end the partisan brinkmanship with a Harper majority. If Harper doesn't capture own dynamic after this debate, he never will.

        • "Near majority levels?" 38 isn't awfully near a majority.
          Actually, that brings up a question I have for Stephen Harper: given his oft-repeated claim that the choice in this election is between a Tory majority and a coalition, does that mean that he will refuse to form a minority government should he fail to receive a parliamentary majority?

          • Most polls I see have had the Tories at about 40% for at least a month now. When has that ever happened before? And I suspect Harper will form the government if he wins the most votes, but as Iggy said in the debate last night, he'll only let him "try", which appears to be code for toppling Harper and forming some kind of a coalition shortly thereafter.

        • But that's just it. Only the Harper haters already see Harper in that light.

          And only the Harper lovers don't, and here we are right back where we started. My point here isn't about which of us is right; it's just that there's no reason why any of us would change our minds about it after tonight, since what we saw tonight is pretty much exactly what we've been seeing for years now. I suspect that the status quo won tonight–which is good for Harper, but not as good as he'd like.

          • And for the record, I was very disappointed in all four leaders tonight, not just Harper. I just focused on Harper because I'm a jerk and I like annoying you.

        • "Only the Harper haters already see Harper in that light." Dennis, I think you should re-read what Not Stephen Colbert said….

          Also, it is important to remember that over half of the country isn't even showing up to cast their vote. So slow down there before you declare Harper Mr. Charisma.

      • None of us will, to be sure. But we are partisans. The question is will it move the independent/apolitical voters. My reading was that Layton seemed to have "the left" to his own. Duceppe looked unhappy to be there (not surprising after all it's the French debate that's his thing) and as for Iggy? Putting aside his delivery (which seemed off putting, angry and at times contemptable towards others), it was hard to discern any clear message for the country.

        • But my point is that there was nothing at all that would be likely to move the independents (whose numbers include me, BTW). How did Harper perform? The same way he always does. How did Ignatieff do? Same as always. Layton? The same. Duceppe? Pretty much the same, except perhaps drunker. How is any of that going to convince anyone to move in any direction?

        • Well I'm non-partisan and watching them confirmed my dislike of them all. In a sense that's not fair, but they've so clearly been coached not to say anything that might lose them votes that they, Harper and Ignatieff in particular, said nothing at all. Honestly I find it hard to believe that anyone could reasonably make a decision who to vote for by watching the debate*.

          *And of course they shouldn't they should read the party platforms.
          Footnote1 – I didn't watch the whole thing as I had a prior engagement
          Footnote2 – my 15 year old son was very unimpressed with any of them

  11. "He lamented that different versions of the Auditor General%E2%80%99s report were circulating around Ottawa"

    Yes, and Iggy tried his best to make it look like it was Harper that was withholding the report, not the AG – nice try but didn't quite fly.

  12. "He lamented that different versions of the Auditor General's report were circulating around Ottawa"

    Yes, and Iggy tried his best to make it look like it was Harper that was withholding the report, not the AG – nice try but didn't quite fly.

  13. "He lamented that different versions of the Auditor General's report were circulating around Ottawa"

    Yes, and Iggy tried his best to make it look like it was Harper that was withholding the report, not the AG – nice try but didn't quite fly.

    • That's a good point. Iggy specifically called upon Harper to have the report released. If he really cared about the niceties of Parliamentary democracy, as he claims, then he would have known that the prime minister has no control over the tabling of the AG report. That line was a whopper.

      • Except Harper has the report.

        • prove it.

          • The PM gets the report first.

          • You Liberals now say you respect Parliament, but obviously not on the AG report. Harper can't release anything. You either know that, or you're ignorant. And desperate. Which is it?

          • They already released the second draft.

          • So? They have no power to release the final draft. Are some of you simply ignorant of this fact? Or just desperate to score hypocritical points against a prime minister you can't knock down?

          • a) not a Liberal

            b) the speaker says it's up to the AG

            c) Harper has a copy.

            d) dilute your koolaid.

          • That was such a blatant spin by Iggy, playing on people's ignorance, that it proves he has become a product of his Liberal handlers.

    • Yeah, American Iggo was demanding the PM break the law… Silly Adscammer.

  14. I don't know about that Dennis. Vis Harper and the Libs, maybe not, but vis Layton and the Libs perhaps so. Layton looked far more the standard bearer for a movement from the left than did Iggy, and Layton landed some real haymakers on him.

    This also seems to be the emerging consensus.

  15. JMHO but there is going to be a lot of mileage out of his 'no-shows' for voting.

    Pretty stinky stuff for an attack ad, lol!!!

  16. I was surprised to learn that Iggy's attendence is not only low,

    but the lowest of all MP's.

    That's quite the prize. The word that most comes to mind is:

    Poseur.

  17. That anyone could stand up in front of the people today and claim that trickle down economics actually works has to be the most offensive thing I 'd seen in that debate. As if making money wasn't the entire point of business, and if you give them more profits they will turn around and raise wages or hire more employees out of charity.

    Giving tax breaks to corporations when you already have among the most competitive tax rates in the world is absurd. Its not going to attract new businesses to Canada, and its not going to create new jobs… why? Because we have one of the weakest domestic markets in the world. They won't come here because they can't sell here, and the won't hire and build more here for the same reason.

    If you give money to the people it will all go into businesses revenue streams, but it actually makes them work to get it. When giving corporate tax breaks the only one being 'trickled' on, is the workers and its not money thats being trickled on them.

  18. That anyone could stand up in front of the people today and claim that trickle down economics actually works has to be the most offensive thing I 'd seen in that debate. As if making money wasn't the entire point of business, and if you give them more profits they will turn around and raise wages or hire more employees out of charity.

    Giving tax breaks to corporations when you already have among the most competitive tax rates in the world is absurd. Its not going to attract new businesses to Canada, and its not going to create new jobs… why? Because we have one of the weakest domestic markets in the world. They won't come here because they can't sell here, and the won't hire and build more here for the same reason.

    If you give money to the people it will all go into businesses revenue streams, but it actually makes them work to get it. When giving corporate tax breaks the only one being 'trickled' on, is the workers and its not money thats being trickled on them.

    • And as was mentioned in the debate you can reduce taxes on the businesses that actually matter, and drive this economy, without reducing taxes on the corporations that will just get out of paying anyway by sleight of hand accounting.

    • In many ways, harper has been spending the last five years testing the gullibility of his supporters.

    • Heterosexuals don't use the term "offensive" in that context. We typically don't get offended by much, least of all dry economic theory.

      I'm just sayin'.

      • Who says – you the democrat?

      • The hell? Where'd the heterosexual bit come from? Just thought you'd throw some bigotry in there for the hell of it?

        • nicely said. :)

      • So that's where the idiot son went.

      • You stay classy.

    • Amen!

  19. It's an interesting point. The only thing that has made this election's result an uncertainty is bleeding of NDP support to the Liberal party. Did this debate change that? If it did, then a Conservative majority might well be in sight.

    By the way, as I'm typing this, Nanos on CTV is saying that Harper survived the debate unscathed, Layton impressed, and Iggy fell short of expectations – as low as they were.

    Personally, I thought Layton was often flip and, as usual, came across as a used car salesman. Iggy's tone and body language were awkward. Harper was cool and above the fray. Duceppe was oddly anxious and desperate – for a change.

  20. And as was mentioned in the debate you can reduce taxes on the businesses that actually matter, and drive this economy, without reducing taxes on the corporations that will just get out of paying anyway by sleight of hand accounting.

  21. I like how every immediate post-debate newspaper headline predictably says the same thing: "no knockout blow, not clear who won". Hedging your bets till the "who won" polls come out, are we guys?

  22. I like how every immediate post-debate newspaper headline predictably says the same thing: "no knockout blow, not clear who won". Hedging your bets till the "who won" polls come out, are we guys?

  23. So if Layton slays Iggy, I guess that means more Harper gov't. Thanks a lot.

  24. Parliament IS a court of law…in fact it's the highest court in the country.

    • Agreed. It's the court that makes the laws.

      • ??? He's one of the chief lawmakers.

    • Then why did Chretien get a supreme court reference on gay marriage? because parliament is NOT supreme in Canada, the unelected supreme court is. That 's different from UK and other Commonwealth countries btw, where parliament really is supreme. If parliament were supreme we would still have an abortion law in this country; we don't because the unelected supreme court ixnayed it.

      We clear? parliament is not a court and if it were it would be subordinate to supreme court.

      • Parliament makes the laws…the Supreme court only interprets them when an individual question comes up, and they do so in light of all previous decisions because that's their job.

        If Parliament so chooses, it can make or reverse any law…and the court has to follow it's lead.

        • . . or deem the law unconstitutional, and throw it out. SC highest court in the land.
          Arguing about different things here – parliament is not a court.

          • Parliament is the highest court in the land.

          • Executive, Legislative, and Judicial make up the government. Legislative is not Judicial. Parliament is not a court.

          • I guess you don't remember when people had to go through Parliament to get a divorce eh?

            Parliament makes the laws…they can also subpoena…and they can punish

          • nope – Emily has said it numerous time, so it must be true. This is how the left works – reality is an abstract that only needs be ignored.

          • Are you implying the court wrote the constitution?

          • That's the point – different levels of gov't. Courts don't write laws, and parliament isn't a court. It is called a division of powers.

      • hmm how can I say this… you are wrong.
        That seems right.

    • No, it isn't, and any right-thinking liberal democrat should know better. Parliament is an important institution, but it is not a court. Indeed, we need for courts to be above parliament in order to defend individual rights from the tyranny of the majority. Do you really think a simple majority vote should be enough to reverse fundamental human rights, enshrined in the charter? I didn't think so.

      • "Do you really think a simple majority vote should be enough to reverse fundamental human rights, enshrined in the charter?"

        Absolutely, anthing less is repugnant to the concept of democracy. The thing is, who decides what is a "fundamental human right"? Unelected courts? What if they're just wrong? For example, zero jurisdictions outside of Canada have adopted Abella's "pay equity" as a fundamental right and it has been a "right" in Canada for many years now. Maybe she just got it wrong?

        Only a majority can decide what is and isn't a right. Rights, ultimately, are arbitrary. To allow a "vanguard" or small # to decide what is a right is tyranny, by definition. Majorities, by definition, cannot be tyrannies. You're either a democrat or you are not, and you clearly are not, I am.

        • So individuals don't have rights like freedom of speech? Are you sure you've thought this through?

          • Refer to The Rule Of So: any argument beginning with the word so generally sucks.

            Who decides what is a right? God? No. A small minority of unelected judges? No. A majority? Yep, that's democracy baby. Anything else is tyranny, undemocratic, and a violation of human rights.

          • So you do believe in human rights? And how are they to be guaranteed? (put your finger over the so if you don't like it.

          • You didn't answer the funamental question: who decides what is a right? You? No.

            We just had an Ontario court strike down Canada's law on marijuana, passed by the peoples' legislature. A tiny elite class imposing their freak values on the rest of Canada, even going so far as to veto the laws of their duly elected reps.

            I'll tell you what a human right is: democracy. The right of the people to pass laws and not have extremist freakazoid unelected judges veto those laws. As Pierre Trudeau once said : "And if we don't live in a democracy, then let the revolution begin!"

          • I think you have a distorted view of what the court does. They interpret the law. Laws can always be changed to reverse court decisions. It might require a constitutional amendment, but it can be done.

        • If all of parliament decided to revoke a right…the people could stop them.

          However all of parliament never would…they've infringed on a couple…but cannot revoke

          Majorities do not decide rights….or we'd still have slavery

          • Actually, they do. And a majority of people decided we shouldn't have slavery. Believed in that concept so firmly that they fought and died for it, and there were more of them willing to fight and die for the right of all people to be free than were willing to do so for the right of people to own slaves.

          • Um…no. Britain banned it throughout the empire.

            What country are you in??

          • Think why that might be. Might it have something to do with it being what a majority of the people wanted?

            Hmmm…

          • No. It was a movement….what we call a 'special interest group' now…same way most other things have happened. The 'majority' of people didn't get asked, nor did the majority own slaves.

            MLK had the civil rights movement….and it took his death to get much of it accomplished….but that certainly hasn't eliminated racism in the US.

          • I submit to you that if more people had wanted slavery than not, we'd still have it.

            For racism, more people don't want it than do, so we have the right to be free from racism. Does that mean we *are* free from racism? Of course not. Simply because society has decided upon a right doesn't mean that decision is never violated.

          • "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." – Margaret Mead.

          • Yes. By convincing the majority.

          • No, the majority never vote on these things.

          • Don't confuse laws with rights.

            Society never formally votes on rights, we just decide them, whether consciously or unconsciously. Legislation and votes may follow, but certainly don't always, and sometimes legislation tries to define rights, but if the majority doesn't agree, as with prohibition, it is the law that fails, not the decision of society.

            Society shifts because the opinions of the majority shift. If not in favor of the idea, at least far enough away from opposition to it that not enough people will fight to keep it.

          • 'Society never formally votes on rights, we just decide them, whether consciously or unconsciously'

            Oh I see. Sorry, I was unaware you were counting on magic.

        • "…anthing less is repugnant to the concept of democracy."

          We had a vote and decided we're taking possession of your house to be used for neighbourhood bar mitzvahs, bbqs, badminton tournaments, etc.
          You've got 2 days to pack your things (we're keeping the appliances) and get out.
          Failure to comply will be considered repugnant to the concept of democracy.

          Yours truly,
          The Neighbours

          • Oh hi neighbours, you'll note that the Charter only pertains to that which is proscribed by law, so this example, sadly, doesn't fly. Additionally, your example was found to be excessively flamboyant and hysterical by the Peoples' Committee For Accountability and you've been asked to leave the country, we can't have anti-democratic freaks like you destabilizing our democracy. Peace the eff out, b, and best of luck in North Korea.

          • "…the Charter only pertains to that which is proscribed by law."

            No.

          • I see you've been watching what's going on in Iraq.

      • Yes, my dear it is…the highest court in the land, and the direct voice of all the people.

        Parliament could indeed change the constitution…and the only thing higher that could stop that….is the people

        PS…I am not a liberal democrat…that was your first mistake

        • "Parliament could indeed change the constitution…"

          Could you stop bothering the adults sweetie? When I was ten I knew that parliament cannot change the constitution, no excuse for you not to know that.

          • Actually they can, and have done so.

            Try to keep up.

          • holy crap Em
            As an immigrant I actually passed an exam on this, maybe the home grown Canadian needs to do likewise before they can vote. Clearly there is a lot of ignorance involved in decision making nowadays.
            Tard doesn't quite cut it.
            Stay strong.

          • Thank you!

            I think some of them are from the Craig's list rent-a-mouth crowd…and maybe some are 'just visiting' from the US

            I can't think of any other reason for this kind of ignorance…so that's my best guess.

          • Civics in highschool isn't mandatory. It should be.

        • 10 provinces might have a say in that assumption Emily.

          • Actually it's 7….and I believe…at least the last time I looked….that they had people

          • The amendment formula depends upon the part of the constitution being changed.

          • Yes, and you can discuss the niceties all you want….but the constitution can, and has been, changed.

          • Certain sections, such as that pertaining to mobility rights, cannot be overridden by notwithstanding clause, so we see how you are even more wrong,

          • Unless they change the whole document. Just stop anonymous coward.

          • It has nothing to do with the notwithstanding clause.

      • Parliament is a court.
        Parliament in the UK tried, convicted and executed a king.
        The Canadian Parliament grew out of Common law that oversaw this process.
        Parliament enacted the charter, the law courts enforce it. Parliament could overturn or amend it tomorrow.

        • Only the most broad (sloppy) reading of the definition of court would call parliament a species of court. The Crown convenes parliament to advise the Crown, but this isn't anything like a monarch holding court or the sitting of the courts. It might have been historically, but in point of law or fact is certainly is not now.
          A court was set up at the behest of the British parliament, the High Court of Justice, for the trial of Charles I, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trial_of_Charles_I, so he was not tried in parliament.
          The Canadian parliament did not grow out of the Common law, Canadian Jurisprudence grew out of the Common Law. Canadian parliament didn't grow out of anything. It was brought into existence by an act of the British parliament. One day it wasn't there, the next day it was. It shares heritage with the Mother Parliament, but that is an entirely different matter.
          The Crown enacted the Charter when it gave royal assent. It was an act of parliament, yes, that was enacted by the Crown. The parliament can not overturn or amend it tomorrow, as the parliament deals mostly with statutory law. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms is significantly more resistant to such amendments.

      • Quoting from this document: http://www2.parl.gc.ca/MarleauMontpetit/DocumentV

        In an vain attempt to clarify if the Canadian Parliament is construed as a court:
        "The extensive power to punish contempts has a judicial flavour and origin in the United Kingdom, yet in reality the English Parliament in the twentieth century is not a court."

        Also per the document: "It is also true that, in the medieval period, the English Parliament had a judicial role, where Parliament was seen primarily as a court of justice, the High Court of Parliament, a court of last resort consisting of the King and the lords temporal. [243] This role has all but disappeared in the United Kingdom. [244] The Canadian Parliament has never had a judicial role. [245]"

  25. So if Layton slays Iggy, I guess that means more Harper gov't. Thanks a lot.

  26. Parliament IS a court of law…in fact it's the highest court in the country.

  27. In many ways, harper has been spending the last five years testing the gullibility of his supporters.

  28. The very best part of the debate was when Jack Layton attacked Iggy with the fact that he had been absent for 135 days of the year and had missed voting on 70% of the bills Mr. Harrper tried to put through. Mr. Layton also stated that if Iggy was trying to be Prime Minister, he should then start showing up for work. Priceless
    Iggy looked like he had a mouth full of sh– and could not talk.
    Being attached by Layton, put Iggy in place and shut him up for a while.

    Way to go Mr. Layton. It is about time someone put him in place.

    • You've just been convinced there is no coalition….and you didn't even see it coming. LOL

      • No – you just saw evidence that the NDP isn't going to just roll over and die for the Liberals.

        • Which, golly gee, means the entire country just saw there is no coalition.

    • Mansbridge says the number Layton used was wrong. If you're going to that kind of attack you better be accurate.

    • Why do you hate on that guy so much? Is it his policies? Or do you just not like how he looks/stands.

      • remember Dion and the Poopin Puffin!?….they "hate" on anyone who isn't like them…..or Liberal

  29. This is probably true. A lot of people seem convinced that everyone else will react to it the way they themselves do, but that's just not likely to happen, especially when all the leaders pretty much behaved as they always do. So, for example, people like you might see Harper's performance as calm and statesmanlike, whereas people like me will see it as an infuriating ball of dismissive arrogance and transparent lies, but none of us are going to change our minds, because if we were going to we probably would have done so a long time ago when he was already acting more or less exactly like he did tonight. Ditto for the other leaders.

  30. That's a good point. Iggy specifically called upon Harper to have the report released. If he really cared about the niceties of Parliamentary democracy, as he claims, then he would have known that the prime minister has no control over the tabling of the AG report. That line was a whopper.

  31. The very best part of the debate was when Jack Layton attacked Iggy with the fact that he had been absent for 135 days of the year and had missed voting on 70% of the bills Mr. Harrper tried to put through. Mr. Layton also stated that if Iggy was trying to be Prime Minister, he should then start showing up for work. Priceless
    Iggy looked like he had a mouth full of sh– and could not talk.
    Being attached by Layton, put Iggy in place and shut him up for a while.

    Way to go Mr. Layton. It is about time someone put him in place.

  32. Agreed. It's the court that makes the laws.

  33. I see the Con spin team is out in full force….LOL

    Although who they think they'll convince on here is anybody's guess.

    G&M viewers btw put Iggy at 61%, and Harper at 25%

    • I encourage the Liberal party to follow the opinions of partisan Liberals who swarm the G and M site.

      An insulated echo chamber is just what Iggy needs right now. "Bravo Iggy, you were flawless!!!"

      • Well then why aren't you on Blogging Tories?

        All koolaid drinkers over there…you'd fit right in.

      • I don't agree with you often, chet, but I'll back you up on this. The Liberals are definitely guilty of spending too much time navel-gazing and not soliciting external opinions. Wells and Coyne wrapped it up nicely the other day, when Wells (I think) mentioned how the Liberal braintrust was operating under the assumption that Canadians were undergoing a temporary vote rebellion, and would soon swoon back toward their natural, Liberal roots. If that's their assumption, the party has a lot more navel-gazing to do yet before it should be let out of purgatory.

        Of course, don't get me on the issues I see with the current iteration of the Conservative Party of Canada.

      • The very same thing happned with hapless Dion. Look what happened there.

        • He had a nice bump in the polls after the debate, until CTV released a video they agreed not to in order to make Dion look foolish.

    • Most of the coverage I've been watching and reading seems to show two things:

      1. All the participants did reasonably well, with most of the political pundits agreeing that Harper performed better than Ignatieff, and that Layton delivered the best one-liners (CBC, CTV, NP, G&M).

      2. Despite the points above, most of said pundits also agreed that the debate will likely have only a minor effect on the outcome of the election.

      • LOL I think that's your hearing going on ya.

        • Ignoring for the moment your rather ridiculous overuse of internet slang, did you not see the "At Issue" panel on CBC's "The National"? Or any of the following articles:

          G&M: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/otta

          NP: http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2011/04/12/ch

          Global: http://www.globalnews.ca/decisioncanada/story.htm

          As I noted previously, most pundits seem to agree that the debate likely won't change the outcome of the election very much, and that Harper's performance was a bit better than Ignatieff's. You're free to disagree however.

          • Internet slang??

            If you mean the LOL…it's in the Oxford dictionary chum

            And what pundits think is irrelevant….it's not like they're ever right.

          • "Ain't" is in the Oxford Dictionary as well, but that doesn't mean it's proper or particularly intelligent sounding.

          • you should take that to heart you impersonate one every day. Oh BTW LOL you silly old woman act your age.

          • My goodness, Cons are bitter tonight. ROFLMAO

            Now my 'internet' slang offends you…oh and of course my age.

            You two are young fogeys, that's all.

            100 years olds are sky-diving these days….keep up.

            Tells me who really won the debate though. Heh.

          • "Offends" is too strong a term. Rather, I just don't see how you expect to be taken seriously when you overuse things like "LOL", regardless of your age. But perhaps you don't want to be, and if that's the case, mission accomplished.

          • Well, Miss Priss….lay in a supply of smelling salts and get used to it.

            Because I'm afraid the world has moved on from the Victorian Age.

          • Trust me, individuals like yourself serve as a constant reminder that decorum is in short supply these days.

          • Yup. Get over it.

          • I've seen you personally attacked twice on one page Em, once for being a woman, and once for presumably being old.

            I think I know how they vote. With the party of fear and hate!

          • Yeah, it happens a lot…and for any reason they can think of…even when they have to make it up.

            They're a fugly bunch of teabaggers.

          • Well, frankly, sometimes your claims are incorrect, Emily, but I often vote you up anyway because often the ones who argue with you are so obnoxious.

          • LOL damned with faint praise.

            My 'claims' are not incorrect, you just disagree with some of them. It's an assumption on your part that you are right, and I am wrong.

            But thanks for the support anyway. ;)

          • Sometimes it's merely an assumption, but sometimes it's knowing that I'm right.

          • Must be comforting.

          • Keeps me warm on chilly spring nights.

    • And at the National Post, Harper leads Ignatieff 67% to 18%, so what's your point? Besides shilling for the Liberals.

      I think this was Ignatieff's moment to shine and show Canadians the real Ignatieff. Well, we saw it, and he was less then impressive.

      • The NatPost is a small rightwing paper that's never made a profit.

        Also I'm not a Liberal.

        You are less than impressive….but you picked the perfect name.

        • I just checked on the globe and mail website. Harper leads 39-35 there (not that it matters in a statistically unrepresentative poll). Why do you lie about something that can be so easily verified?

          • I am beginning to think she's a patient in a mental hospital.

            I've never seen someone is such deep denial of their own reality before.

          • No, you're just being a Con.

          • Sorry m'dear….they had a vote, on the live blog…and those are the numbers

            Ever occur to you there would be more than one set of numbers?

            Stop calling people liars….think first.

          • Yeah, I saw the poll Emily is talking about on the liveblog. It was fairly early in the debate, when Harper was getting ratled and I hoped he would lose his temper, but then it looked like his medication kicked in and he spent the rest of the debate in a creepy miasma of smirking lies. G&M did not have another poll on the liveblog last night, though maybe they have added one since.

            Meanwhile the Edmonton Journal has Ignatieff winning:
            http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/decision-cana

        • Nice, you stay classy.

          Try not to foam at the mouth too much when the Liberals come in a distant second yet again.

          • Hey babe…you picked your name, I didn't.

        • yes we know, you're a 30 year supporter of the PC party blah blah blah

          • There is no PC party, dude. Hasn't been for years.

            Gawd you're behind the times.

  34. You've just been convinced there is no coalition….and you didn't even see it coming. LOL

  35. people like you might see Harper's performance as calm and statesmanlike, whereas people like me will see it as an infuriating ball of dismissive arrogance and transparent lies

    But that's just it. Only the Harper haters already see Harper in that light. Near majority levels of voters have not for a now unprecedented period of time for Conservatives. And, in my opinion, tonight's debate only cemented this dynamic for Harper.

    This election is about whether or not people want to end the partisan brinkmanship with a Harper majority. If Harper doesn't capture own dynamic after this debate, he never will.

  36. None of us will, to be sure. But we are partisans. The question is will it move the independent/apolitical voters. My reading was that Layton seemed to have "the left" to his own. Duceppe looked unhappy to be there (not surprising after all it's the French debate that's his thing) and as for Iggy? Putting aside his delivery (which seemed off putting, angry and at times contemptable towards others), it was hard to discern any clear message for the country.

  37. "Near majority levels?" 38 isn't awfully near a majority.
    Actually, that brings up a question I have for Stephen Harper: given his oft-repeated claim that the choice in this election is between a Tory majority and a coalition, does that mean that he will refuse to form a minority government should he fail to receive a parliamentary majority?

  38. I encourage the Liberal party to follow the opinions of partisan Liberals who swarm the G and M site.

    An insulated echo chamber is just what Iggy needs right now. "Bravo Iggy, you were flawless!!!"

  39. Mansbridge says the number Layton used was wrong. If you're going to that kind of attack you better be accurate.

  40. But that's just it. Only the Harper haters already see Harper in that light.

    And only the Harper lovers don't, and here we are right back where we started. My point here isn't about which of us is right; it's just that there's no reason why any of us would change our minds about it after tonight, since what we saw tonight is pretty much exactly what we've been seeing for years now. I suspect that the status quo won tonight–which is good for Harper, but not as good as he'd like.

  41. Well then why aren't you on Blogging Tories?

    All koolaid drinkers over there…you'd fit right in.

  42. And for the record, I was very disappointed in all four leaders tonight, not just Harper. I just focused on Harper because I'm a jerk and I like annoying you.

  43. And while we were watching the debates, yet another little problem with the Cons has come out – this time they mis-quoted Kevin Page in a report on the G8/20.

    • LOL no, Cons deliberately lied about both the AG and Page

      How many others have they lied about I wonder?

      • Next up – re-writing some Supreme Court decisions?

        • I wouldn't put it past them….I really wouldn't.

          Just inserting a '^ not' here and there.

          • Try to imagine how little the average voter cares about Kevin Page!

          • The average voter doesn't like liars. Conservatives are liars.

  44. And while we were watching the debates, yet another little problem with the Cons has come out – this time they mis-quoted Kevin Page in a report on the G8/20.

  45. Except Harper has the report.

  46. LOL no, Cons deliberately lied about both the AG and Page

    How many others have they lied about I wonder?

  47. Harper is the truth artbiter.

  48. But my point is that there was nothing at all that would be likely to move the independents (whose numbers include me, BTW). How did Harper perform? The same way he always does. How did Ignatieff do? Same as always. Layton? The same. Duceppe? Pretty much the same, except perhaps drunker. How is any of that going to convince anyone to move in any direction?

  49. ??? He's one of the chief lawmakers.

  50. Was this debate earlier than the 2008 debate? I found myself really busy getting the kids through the bath and in bed during the entire debate, and only caught 50% of it. I wonder if I wasn't the only one in that position, and if that might have impaacted the ratings and total viewership. It was certainly quite early for the Westerners…

    • I spoke to my SIL in BC, it began there at 4.00pm.Thats not good timing at all.

      • It was terrible timing for the Westerners, and I assumed the transmission would have been delayed until 7PM for them. I suppose holding it much later and Atlantic Canada gets screwed, but I remember it being an hour later last time, at least.

        • At 7 pm ET, it started at 8:30 Nfld time. I'm sure there are replays out west…

    • I think so because it was on at 4 out here on the west coast and I don't remember it being that early. Means a lot of people would be able to see it. It's repeated later on CPAC though.

    • You can watch it again on watch.ctv.ca

    • For the liberal media, Canada ends at the boundaries of Toronto.Beyond that point there be knuckledraggers.

  51. Was this debate earlier than the 2008 debate? I found myself really busy getting the kids through the bath and in bed during the entire debate, and only caught 50% of it. I wonder if I wasn't the only one in that position, and if that might have impaacted the ratings and total viewership. It was certainly quite early for the Westerners…

  52. Next up – re-writing some Supreme Court decisions?

  53. I take back all the accusations of you being shamelessly partisan Wherry. At least you concede the obvious: Iggy didn't do very well in this debate. He didn't flop, he was just…flat.

    Sadly, many media outlets are reporting that he won the debate, or rather, more sneakily, are running articles along the lines of "group of 18 year olds watching debate declare Ignatieff winner". Ignatieff's "Riot Grrrrrl" gang of groupies over at the CBC – Kady, Barton, and the rest – are making excuses left and right for his performance, as one might expect.

    So kudos, brother, at least this one time you reported what happened.

    • Really? most analysts pointed out on CTV and CBC that the PM won.

    • Your personal Con belief is irrelevant….what matters is the opinion of the rest of the audience….the voters.

      And Wherry didn't anything about Iggy not doing well. He said Harper had a lot of gall though.

      • What matters is that Harper is going to win a third consecutive election, likely a majority. Sucks to be you sweetie.

        • Well since I've said Harper getting in with a smaller minority would likely be the best thing for the country….you must have confused me with someone else.

          Here's a hint though….it doesn't do your party any good to talk like you're an 8 year old in a schoolyard. It sounds like you're trying to force something on people that they don't want. Therein lies the makings of dictatorship.

          • Oh, right, raving about dictatorships is really working for you sweetie. Enjoy 4 more years of losing, loser.

          • I think you've played the 'drinking game' for too long….get some sleep.

      • Oh my God, when Ignatieff talked about democracy, I just melted. Finally he is talking about an issue that will resonate with ordinary Canadians like me. When I look for a government, I don't want a lot of fancy policies or economic statistics. At the end of the day, what I want is a PM with a well-developed abstract sense of the meaning of democracy. Isiah Berlin lectures in every pot!

        • Gosh…and to think people died for that abstract idea.

          • Sure, and air is important too. If we lack oxygen, we die. The thing is that our access to oxygen, and the survival of our democracy do not face tangible threats.

            Do you honestly think Canadian democracy is under threat, should Harper retain power or win a majority? If you were Ignatieff, is that really the issue you would run on? Because I would say that in the aftermath of the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, there are probably other things people are more likely to care about – like their jobs, like whether Canada is in a housing bubble, and like the 56 billion dollar deficit.

          • Actually, our democracy faces a real and present danger….and if you don't realize that, you're part of that danger.

            Are people more concerned about jobs and houses than democracy?

            Well, they were in Germany, and look what happened.

          • Germany? You mean when that national Socialist Hitler was running the show? He's the guy that fancy pants Trudeau admired so much right?

          • No, and no.

          • I honestly do believe that Canadian democracy will be under threat should Harper retain power or win a majority, yes. He's shown that he's entirely willing to use every loophole in the book to get what he wants, no matter what anybody else wants.

            With a majority, his ability to do this becomes all the greater. That's not democracy. Democracy is supposed to be about what we, the collective we, want. Not just one guy.

        • Well, if you don't want any statistics, Harper is probably your man.

  54. I wouldn't put it past them….I really wouldn't.

    Just inserting a '^ not' here and there.

  55. I take back all the accusations of you being shamelessly partisan Wherry. At least you concede the obvious: Iggy didn't do very well in this debate. He didn't flop, he was just…flat.

    Sadly, many media outlets are reporting that he won the debate, or rather, more sneakily, are running articles along the lines of "group of 18 year olds watching debate declare Ignatieff winner". Ignatieff's "Riot Grrrrrl" gang of groupies over at the CBC – Kady, Barton, and the rest – are making excuses left and right for his performance, as one might expect.

    So kudos, brother, at least this one time you reported what happened.

  56. Most of the coverage I've been watching and reading seems to show two things:

    1. All the participants did reasonably well, with most of the political pundits agreeing that Harper performed better than Ignatieff, and that Layton delivered the best one-liners (CBC, CTV, NP, G&M).

    2. Despite the points above, most of said pundits also agreed that the debate will likely have only a minor effect on the outcome of the election.

  57. Then why did Chretien get a supreme court reference on gay marriage? because parliament is NOT supreme in Canada, the unelected supreme court is. That 's different from UK and other Commonwealth countries btw, where parliament really is supreme. If parliament were supreme we would still have an abortion law in this country; we don't because the unelected supreme court ixnayed it.

    We clear? parliament is not a court and if it were it would be subordinate to supreme court.

  58. I don't agree with you often, chet, but I'll back you up on this. The Liberals are definitely guilty of spending too much time navel-gazing and not soliciting external opinions. Wells and Coyne wrapped it up nicely the other day, when Wells (I think) mentioned how the Liberal braintrust was operating under the assumption that Canadians were undergoing a temporary vote rebellion, and would soon swoon back toward their natural, Liberal roots. If that's their assumption, the party has a lot more navel-gazing to do yet before it should be let out of purgatory.

    Of course, don't get me on the issues I see with the current iteration of the Conservative Party of Canada.

  59. Harper won easily He kept his cool. Iggy, he needs to beef on policy! any policy, he was terrible.He held his own, but thats not saying much. Why only30%? Layton took hat knock punch to him and I loved it.

  60. Well I'm non-partisan and watching them confirmed my dislike of them all. In a sense that's not fair, but they've so clearly been coached not to say anything that might lose them votes that they, Harper and Ignatieff in particular, said nothing at all. Honestly I find it hard to believe that anyone could reasonably make a decision who to vote for by watching the debate*.

    *And of course they shouldn't they should read the party platforms.
    Footnote1 – I didn't watch the whole thing as I had a prior engagement
    Footnote2 – my 15 year old son was very unimpressed with any of them

  61. Harper won easily He kept his cool. Iggy, he needs to beef on policy! any policy, he was terrible.He held his own, but thats not saying much. Why only30%? Layton took hat knock punch to him and I loved it.

  62. Really? most analysts pointed out on CTV and CBC that the PM won.

  63. I spoke to my SIL in BC, it began there at 4.00pm.Thats not good timing at all.

  64. No, it isn't, and any right-thinking liberal democrat should know better. Parliament is an important institution, but it is not a court. Indeed, we need for courts to be above parliament in order to defend individual rights from the tyranny of the majority. Do you really think a simple majority vote should be enough to reverse fundamental human rights, enshrined in the charter? I didn't think so.

  65. The very same thing happned with hapless Dion. Look what happened there.

  66. I think so because it was on at 4 out here on the west coast and I don't remember it being that early. Means a lot of people would be able to see it. It's repeated later on CPAC though.

  67. Parliament makes the laws…the Supreme court only interprets them when an individual question comes up, and they do so in light of all previous decisions because that's their job.

    If Parliament so chooses, it can make or reverse any law…and the court has to follow it's lead.

  68. Your personal Con belief is irrelevant….what matters is the opinion of the rest of the audience….the voters.

    And Wherry didn't anything about Iggy not doing well. He said Harper had a lot of gall though.

  69. It was terrible timing for the Westerners, and I assumed the transmission would have been delayed until 7PM for them. I suppose holding it much later and Atlantic Canada gets screwed, but I remember it being an hour later last time, at least.

  70. LOL I think that's your hearing going on ya.

  71. Layton and Ignatieff debating style: I know you are but what am I ?

    A dumb American debating style: "Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy. I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy."

    I'm very embarrassed!!!!

  72. "Do you really think a simple majority vote should be enough to reverse fundamental human rights, enshrined in the charter?"

    Absolutely, anthing less is repugnant to the concept of democracy. The thing is, who decides what is a "fundamental human right"? Unelected courts? What if they're just wrong? For example, zero jurisdictions outside of Canada have adopted Abella's "pay equity" as a fundamental right and it has been a "right" in Canada for many years now. Maybe she just got it wrong?

    Only a majority can decide what is and isn't a right. Rights, ultimately, are arbitrary. To allow a "vanguard" or small # to decide what is a right is tyranny, by definition. Majorities, by definition, cannot be tyrannies. You're either a democrat or you are not, and you clearly are not, I am.

  73. Layton and Ignatieff debating style: I know you are but what am I ?

    A dumb American debating style: "Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy. I knew Jack Kennedy. Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you're no Jack Kennedy."

    I'm very embarrassed!!!!

  74. What matters is that Harper is going to win a third consecutive election, likely a majority. Sucks to be you sweetie.

  75. Yes, my dear it is…the highest court in the land, and the direct voice of all the people.

    Parliament could indeed change the constitution…and the only thing higher that could stop that….is the people

    PS…I am not a liberal democrat…that was your first mistake

  76. Curiously, Harper was the one participant not wearing a wedding band.

    • Harper maximized his allowable bling with the tiny Canadian flag lapel pin.

      • The others know what country they're in….Harper always thinks he's in the US

  77. Curiously, Harper was the one participant not wearing a wedding band.

  78. So individuals don't have rights like freedom of speech? Are you sure you've thought this through?

  79. "Parliament could indeed change the constitution…"

    Could you stop bothering the adults sweetie? When I was ten I knew that parliament cannot change the constitution, no excuse for you not to know that.

  80. If all of parliament decided to revoke a right…the people could stop them.

    However all of parliament never would…they've infringed on a couple…but cannot revoke

    Majorities do not decide rights….or we'd still have slavery

  81. Heterosexuals don't use the term "offensive" in that context. We typically don't get offended by much, least of all dry economic theory.

    I'm just sayin'.

  82. Ipsos polling has Harper and Layton as the winners.

    This question really jumped out at me though:

    Before: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 29%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 35%
    Gilles Duceppe 8%

    Don't know 18%

    After: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 31%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 38%
    Gilles Duceppe 10%

    Don't know 12%

    It's sad that this matters…but it does matter; especially to someone trying to turn a lot of voters his way.

    • Ipsos had Harp 20 points ahead when the election was called too.

    • What? Ignatieff no more attractive than Duceppe? That's crazy! I mean, I'm just a straight guy, but that doesn't mean I'm blind, and Iggy was the handsomest man on that stage (unless Paikin counts).

    • On a related note, Andrew Potter described Ignatieff as "Canada's sexiest cerebral man" in 2003.

    • No way, Duceppe is dreamy

    • Yes, and if visual attractiveness really mattered one bit we'd have more women in politics. Nice question!

  83. Well since I've said Harper getting in with a smaller minority would likely be the best thing for the country….you must have confused me with someone else.

    Here's a hint though….it doesn't do your party any good to talk like you're an 8 year old in a schoolyard. It sounds like you're trying to force something on people that they don't want. Therein lies the makings of dictatorship.

  84. Ipsos polling has Harper and Layton as the winners.

    This question really jumped out at me though:

    Before: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 29%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 35%
    Gilles Duceppe 8%

    Don%E2%80%99t know 18%

    After: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 31%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 38%
    Gilles Duceppe 10%

    Don%E2%80%99t know 12%

    It's sad that this matters…but it does matter; especially to someone trying to turn a lot of voters his way.

  85. Ipsos polling has Harper and Layton as the winners.

    This question really jumped out at me though:

    Before: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 29%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 35%
    Gilles Duceppe 8%

    Don't know 18%

    After: Which party leader do you think is the most visually attractive?
    Stephen Harper 31%
    Michael Ignatieff 9%
    Jack Layton 38%
    Gilles Duceppe 10%

    Don't know 12%

    It's sad that this matters…but it does matter; especially to someone trying to turn a lot of voters his way.

    • See? this is what I mean, Wherry is King friggin' Solomon compared to some of these Liberal partisan nutters claiming Iggy won.

  86. The NatPost is a small rightwing paper that's never made a profit.

    Also I'm not a Liberal.

    You are less than impressive….but you picked the perfect name.

  87. Harper maximized his allowable bling with the tiny Canadian flag lapel pin.

  88. Refer to The Rule Of So: any argument beginning with the word so generally sucks.

    Who decides what is a right? God? No. A small minority of unelected judges? No. A majority? Yep, that's democracy baby. Anything else is tyranny, undemocratic, and a violation of human rights.

  89. Oh my God, when Ignatieff talked about democracy, I just melted. Finally he is talking about an issue that will resonate with ordinary Canadians like me. When I look for a government, I don't want a lot of fancy policies or economic statistics. At the end of the day, what I want is a PM with a well-developed abstract sense of the meaning of democracy. Isiah Berlin lectures in every pot!

  90. See? this is what I mean, Wherry is King friggin' Solomon compared to some of these Liberal partisan nutters claiming Iggy won.

  91. Ignoring for the moment your rather ridiculous overuse of internet slang, did you not see the "At Issue" panel on CBC's "The National"? Or any of the following articles:

    G&M: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/otta

    NP: http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2011/04/12/ch

    Global: http://www.globalnews.ca/decisioncanada/story.htm

    As I noted previously, most pundits seem to agree that the debate likely won't change the outcome of the election very much, and that Harper's performance was a bit better than Ignatieff's. You're free to disagree however.

  92. I just checked on the globe and mail website. Harper leads 39-35 there (not that it matters in a statistically unrepresentative poll). Why do you lie about something that can be so easily verified?

  93. Who says – you the democrat?

  94. Oh, right, raving about dictatorships is really working for you sweetie. Enjoy 4 more years of losing, loser.

  95. Nice, you stay classy.

    Try not to foam at the mouth too much when the Liberals come in a distant second yet again.

  96. "…anthing less is repugnant to the concept of democracy."

    We had a vote and decided we're taking possession of your house to be used for neighbourhood bar mitzvahs, bbqs, badminton tournaments, etc.
    You've got 2 days to pack your things (we're keeping the appliances) and get out.
    Failure to comply will be considered repugnant to the concept of democracy.

    Yours truly,
    The Neighbours

  97. I am beginning to think she's a patient in a mental hospital.

    I've never seen someone is such deep denial of their own reality before.

  98. At 7 pm ET, it started at 8:30 Nfld time. I'm sure there are replays out west…

  99. So you do believe in human rights? And how are they to be guaranteed? (put your finger over the so if you don't like it.

  100. I am beginning to think she's a patient in a mental hospital.

    I%E2%80%99ve never seen someone is such deep denial of their own reality before.

  101. Actually they can, and have done so.

    Try to keep up.

  102. I think you've played the 'drinking game' for too long….get some sleep.

  103. Gosh…and to think people died for that abstract idea.

  104. Well, if you don't want any statistics, Harper is probably your man.

  105. The others know what country they're in….Harper always thinks he's in the US

  106. 10 provinces might have a say in that assumption Emily.

  107. Ipsos had Harp 20 points ahead when the election was called too.

  108. Internet slang??

    If you mean the LOL…it's in the Oxford dictionary chum

    And what pundits think is irrelevant….it's not like they're ever right.

  109. prove it.

  110. I think the real takeaway from the Ipsos poll is not the "who won" question. It is the "what issue mattered most" question.

    Before the debate
    Ethics and accountability: 16%
    Economy: 27%

    After the debate
    Ethics and accountability: 15%
    Economy: 35%

    If Ignatieff wanted to run on an accountability platform, fine, but he needs to convince people that this is what the election should be about. This poll, and my gut instinct would suggest that he failed on that front. And if this election is about the economy, it is problematic that Ignatieff had so little to say on the matter.

  111. Sorry m'dear….they had a vote, on the live blog…and those are the numbers

    Ever occur to you there would be more than one set of numbers?

    Stop calling people liars….think first.

  112. No, you're just being a Con.

  113. I think the real takeaway from the Ipsos poll is not the "who won" question. It is the "what issue mattered most" question.

    Before the debate
    Ethics and accountability: 16%
    Economy: 27%

    After the debate
    Ethics and accountability: 15%
    Economy: 35%

    If Ignatieff wanted to run on an accountability platform, fine, but he needs to convince people that this is what the election should be about. This poll, and my gut instinct would suggest that he failed on that front. And if this election is about the economy, it is problematic that Ignatieff had so little to say on the matter.

    • Hey, didn't you make some sort of debate prediction? How did that turn out? :-)

  114. Hey babe…you picked your name, I didn't.

  115. "Ain't" is in the Oxford Dictionary as well, but that doesn't mean it's proper or particularly intelligent sounding.

  116. you should take that to heart you impersonate one every day. Oh BTW LOL you silly old woman act your age.

  117. Sure, and air is important too. If we lack oxygen, we die. The thing is that our access to oxygen, and the survival of our democracy do not face tangible threats.

    Do you honestly think Canadian democracy is under threat, should Harper retain power or win a majority? If you were Ignatieff, is that really the issue you would run on? Because I would say that in the aftermath of the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, there are probably other things people are more likely to care about – like their jobs, like whether Canada is in a housing bubble, and like the 56 billion dollar deficit.

  118. Actually it's 7….and I believe…at least the last time I looked….that they had people

  119. The PM gets the report first.

  120. yes we know, you're a 30 year supporter of the PC party blah blah blah

  121. My goodness, Cons are bitter tonight. ROFLMAO

    Now my 'internet' slang offends you…oh and of course my age.

    You two are young fogeys, that's all.

    100 years olds are sky-diving these days….keep up.

    Tells me who really won the debate though. Heh.

    • Definitely the funniest transcript! Seriously, I encourage everyone to read the transcript linked to above. It's hilarious.

      BTW, does anyone know if a real transcript has been posted somewhere?

    • Awesomeness. :)

    • Thanks for that. Brightened my morning.

  122. Actually, our democracy faces a real and present danger….and if you don't realize that, you're part of that danger.

    Are people more concerned about jobs and houses than democracy?

    Well, they were in Germany, and look what happened.

  123. There is no PC party, dude. Hasn't been for years.

    Gawd you're behind the times.

  124. "Offends" is too strong a term. Rather, I just don't see how you expect to be taken seriously when you overuse things like "LOL", regardless of your age. But perhaps you don't want to be, and if that's the case, mission accomplished.

  125. Well, Miss Priss….lay in a supply of smelling salts and get used to it.

    Because I'm afraid the world has moved on from the Victorian Age.

  126. No – you just saw evidence that the NDP isn't going to just roll over and die for the Liberals.

  127. Trust me, individuals like yourself serve as a constant reminder that decorum is in short supply these days.

  128. Which, golly gee, means the entire country just saw there is no coalition.

  129. Yup. Get over it.

  130. I honestly do believe that Canadian democracy will be under threat should Harper retain power or win a majority, yes. He's shown that he's entirely willing to use every loophole in the book to get what he wants, no matter what anybody else wants.

    With a majority, his ability to do this becomes all the greater. That's not democracy. Democracy is supposed to be about what we, the collective we, want. Not just one guy.

  131. The amendment formula depends upon the part of the constitution being changed.

  132. . . or deem the law unconstitutional, and throw it out. SC highest court in the land.
    Arguing about different things here – parliament is not a court.

  133. Yes, and you can discuss the niceties all you want….but the constitution can, and has been, changed.

  134. You didn't answer the funamental question: who decides what is a right? You? No.

    We just had an Ontario court strike down Canada's law on marijuana, passed by the peoples' legislature. A tiny elite class imposing their freak values on the rest of Canada, even going so far as to veto the laws of their duly elected reps.

    I'll tell you what a human right is: democracy. The right of the people to pass laws and not have extremist freakazoid unelected judges veto those laws. As Pierre Trudeau once said : "And if we don't live in a democracy, then let the revolution begin!"

  135. Parliament is the highest court in the land.

  136. Oh hi neighbours, you'll note that the Charter only pertains to that which is proscribed by law, so this example, sadly, doesn't fly. Additionally, your example was found to be excessively flamboyant and hysterical by the Peoples' Committee For Accountability and you've been asked to leave the country, we can't have anti-democratic freaks like you destabilizing our democracy. Peace the eff out, b, and best of luck in North Korea.

  137. The hell? Where'd the heterosexual bit come from? Just thought you'd throw some bigotry in there for the hell of it?

  138. Actually, they do. And a majority of people decided we shouldn't have slavery. Believed in that concept so firmly that they fought and died for it, and there were more of them willing to fight and die for the right of all people to be free than were willing to do so for the right of people to own slaves.

  139. I see you've been watching what's going on in Iraq.

  140. Um…no. Britain banned it throughout the empire.

    What country are you in??

  141. Unfortunately it was a made-up stat.

  142. Think why that might be. Might it have something to do with it being what a majority of the people wanted?

    Hmmm…

  143. What? Ignatieff no more attractive than Duceppe? That's crazy! I mean, I'm just a straight guy, but that doesn't mean I'm blind, and Iggy was the handsomest man on that stage (unless Paikin counts).

  144. No. It was a movement….what we call a 'special interest group' now…same way most other things have happened. The 'majority' of people didn't get asked, nor did the majority own slaves.

    MLK had the civil rights movement….and it took his death to get much of it accomplished….but that certainly hasn't eliminated racism in the US.

  145. So that's where the idiot son went.

  146. hmm how can I say this… you are wrong.
    That seems right.

  147. Parliament is a court.
    Parliament in the UK tried, convicted and executed a king.
    The Canadian Parliament grew out of Common law that oversaw this process.
    Parliament enacted the charter, the law courts enforce it. Parliament could overturn or amend it tomorrow.

  148. Executive, Legislative, and Judicial make up the government. Legislative is not Judicial. Parliament is not a court.

  149. holy crap Em
    As an immigrant I actually passed an exam on this, maybe the home grown Canadian needs to do likewise before they can vote. Clearly there is a lot of ignorance involved in decision making nowadays.
    Tard doesn't quite cut it.
    Stay strong.

  150. Thank you!

    I think some of them are from the Craig's list rent-a-mouth crowd…and maybe some are 'just visiting' from the US

    I can't think of any other reason for this kind of ignorance…so that's my best guess.

  151. I guess you don't remember when people had to go through Parliament to get a divorce eh?

    Parliament makes the laws…they can also subpoena…and they can punish

  152. On a related note, Andrew Potter described Ignatieff as "Canada's sexiest cerebral man" in 2003.

  153. Hey, didn't you make some sort of debate prediction? How did that turn out? :-)

  154. Definitely the funniest transcript! Seriously, I encourage everyone to read the transcript linked to above. It's hilarious.

    BTW, does anyone know if a real transcript has been posted somewhere?

  155. Yeah, American Iggo was demanding the PM break the law… Silly Adscammer.

  156. Germany? You mean when that national Socialist Hitler was running the show? He's the guy that fancy pants Trudeau admired so much right?

  157. Let's be honest, the debate was entirely uninspiring. Harper sounded like a whiny child who hasn't got his way, with his high pitched, defensive tone (I didn't want this election, boo hoo hoo). Ignatieff stumbled through the debate, and didn't seem prepared for Layton's attacks. Duceppe was as out of place as ever. Layton seemed almost angry through the debate, as if throwing up his hands and saying "what must I do to knock these guys out". Maybe the winner was the absent May, who called it a "sad spectacle".

    Really, if I had to choose a winner, I'd say Layton. At least he threw out some policy in the debate. I liked when he made a reasoned proposal for proportional representation, Harper seemed ready to rebut, but the moderator gave the podium to Ignatieff and the manner was never addressed again, which I think was very unfortunate.

    If these jokers are the best we have, I hope for all of us that the status quo is maintained in this election, and all parties are forced to get new leaders, and we can try again next year.

  158. Let's be honest, the debate was entirely uninspiring. Harper sounded like a whiny child who hasn't got his way, with his high pitched, defensive tone (I didn't want this election, boo hoo hoo). Ignatieff stumbled through the debate, and didn't seem prepared for Layton's attacks. Duceppe was as out of place as ever. Layton seemed almost angry through the debate, as if throwing up his hands and saying "what must I do to knock these guys out". Maybe the winner was the absent May, who called it a "sad spectacle".

    Really, if I had to choose a winner, I'd say Layton. At least he threw out some policy in the debate. I liked when he made a reasoned proposal for proportional representation, Harper seemed ready to rebut, but the moderator gave the podium to Ignatieff and the manner was never addressed again, which I think was very unfortunate.

    If these jokers are the best we have, I hope for all of us that the status quo is maintained in this election, and all parties are forced to get new leaders, and we can try again next year.

    • Layton wins all the debates, but never wins elections.

  159. Certain sections, such as that pertaining to mobility rights, cannot be overridden by notwithstanding clause, so we see how you are even more wrong,

  160. Awesomeness. :)

  161. Stephen Harper was solid; a good performance.
    Best knockout punch? Jack Layton on Michael Ignatieff – it may even tilt the Conservatives to a majority. Wait for the ads.

    What this demonstrates to me is that a divided "left" will never succeed against an organized "right".

    • "Stephen Harper was solid; a good performance."

      Don't you mean a safe one? As Not Steven Colbert said above, the status quo won last night, and as Andrew Coyne said, Harper needs to bring the undecided center right votes to his side. Timid references to the Liberal's past(none of which applies to Ignatieff), vague notions to describe the NDP's platform, practically ignoring the Block's vote base, changing the subject on his own past crimes as PM… none of it will achieve that.

      • Like him or not, Stephen Harper made no major gaffes, absorbed the body blows, kept his cool and looked prime ministerial; a good and safe performance. Will it deliver a majority? I hope not, but it's hard to say. If he gets a minority and manages to stay leader of the party, then the incremental change starts anew. FOX/SunTV will be starting up and I do think it is a key part of the equation – mass messengering.

        As long as the left splits their vote, a safe/good performance might be good enough

    • Please – you guys who view the world (and voters) as only "left" or "right" are the same as those kids who throw scud firecrackers into the night sky. Merely spouting pejoratives achieves nothing.

  162. Stephen Harper was solid; a good performance.
    Best knockout punch? Jack Layton on Michael Ignatieff – it may even tilt the Conservatives to a majority. Wait for the ads.

    What this demonstrates to me is that a divided "left" will never succeed against an organized "right".

  163. The state of canadian politics never changes. The Bloc were an embarrasment to Canada….again. The Green party would have added intelligence to this debate versus the bloc.

    Harper was pre-programmed and sooooo boring while stayoing on message. Jack was at least engaging and brought up valid points. Liberal leader failed yet again to garner any enthusiasm or demonstrtae any leadership.

    Sadly….harper won the night and we continue to be bullied and talked down to by the supreme leader.

    When will we have the opportunity to vote for a leader versus some party hack who we never hear from again.

    That's Canada….got to love it eh

  164. The state of canadian politics never changes. The Bloc were an embarrasment to Canada….again. The Green party would have added intelligence to this debate versus the bloc.

    Harper was pre-programmed and sooooo boring while stayoing on message. Jack was at least engaging and brought up valid points. Liberal leader failed yet again to garner any enthusiasm or demonstrtae any leadership.

    Sadly….harper won the night and we continue to be bullied and talked down to by the supreme leader.

    When will we have the opportunity to vote for a leader versus some party hack who we never hear from again.

    That's Canada….got to love it eh

  165. No, Ignatieff looked animate, in sharp contrast to Harpers plastic, tight lipped, pinched butt.

    • Yea, Ignatieff looked like he was animated by Jim Henson. He is clearly a muppet.

    • Maybe this explains where his wedding ring was. lol

  166. No, Ignatieff looked animate, in sharp contrast to Harpers plastic, tight lipped, pinched butt.

  167. My understanding is that you are wrong on three counts:

    1) Assuming you believe Layton's numbers, they are wrong. Mansbridge corrected it to 59% last night
    2) His is not the lowest of all MPs, but of all leaders
    3) His attendance was low for votes, not for attendance in general

    That's my understanding. As always, I stand to be corrected.

  168. Yea, Ignatieff looked like he was animated by Jim Henson. He is clearly a muppet.

  169. "First and foremost, apologies are probably due to Robert from Newmarket, Veselka from Mississauga, Sam from Mount Pearl, Jade from Montreal, and Patti from New Glasgow…… "

    I thought this was excellent example of how political parties/pols don't actually give a toss what public think or want.

    I find it remarkable that none of the leaders, or their handlers, thought that Canadians asking questions deserved something more than being treated as stage props.

    Canadian pols made it obvious it is all about them – this was good example of why some Canadians are turned off by politics – and think of Canadians as little more than potted plants, there to make pols like Statesman like or somesuch.

  170. "First and foremost, apologies are probably due to Robert from Newmarket, Veselka from Mississauga, Sam from Mount Pearl, Jade from Montreal, and Patti from New Glasgow…… "

    I thought this was excellent example of how political parties/pols don't actually give a toss what public think or want.

    I find it remarkable that none of the leaders, or their handlers, thought that Canadians asking questions deserved something more than being treated as stage props.

    Canadian pols made it obvious it is all about them – this was good example of why some Canadians are turned off by politics – and think of Canadians as little more than potted plants, there to make pols like Statesman like or somesuch.

  171. "Ignatieff looked animate"

    Wellllllll……that's one way of putting it. But animate in the sense that he looked putulantly snide and angry the whole time.

    It's one thing to say "you cannot be believed…here are the real facts" (then present facts which contradict the statement)

    and quite another to say "you don't tell the truth, you can't be trusted"

    Which is what Iggy said over, and over and over again. That's just a base smear that will surely resonate with the Harper haters on the left, but will be off putting to those in the middle.

    Most importantly though, it evidences a failure to appreciate the factual matrix surrounding the issues of our day. A young child can hurl "you're a liar" slurs all day long.

    For a Harvard debating master, this was an epic fail.

  172. "Ignatieff looked animate"

    Wellllllll……that's one way of putting it. But animate in the sense that he looked putulantly snide and angry the whole time.

    It's one thing to say "you cannot be believed…here are the real facts" (then present facts which contradict the statement)

    and quite another to say "you don't tell the truth, you can't be trusted"

    Which is what Iggy said over, and over and over again. That's just a base smear that will surely resonate with the Harper haters on the left, but will be off putting to those in the middle.

    Most importantly though, it evidences a failure to appreciate the factual matrix surrounding the issues of our day. A young child can hurl "you're a liar" slurs all day long.

    For a Harvard debating master, this was an epic fail.

  173. And how many times did Iggy say

    "You will shut down anything you cannot control!!"

    This over the top rhetoric is sadly something we've come to expect by highly partisan commenters on blogs. But a purported statesman?

    Angry and petulant is not something Canadians want in a leader.

  174. And how many times did Iggy say

    "You will shut down anything you cannot control!!"

    This over the top rhetoric is sadly something we've come to expect by highly partisan commenters on blogs. But a purported statesman?

    Angry and petulant is not something Canadians want in a leader.

    • "Angry and petulant" describes Harper to a T

    • Ignatieff relies too much on these "all or nothing" simplified generalizations. He's a smart man and must realize that such sweeping generalizations can not be supported by facts. I wonder if he feels guilty when he uses them as required by political rhetoric?

      • To what all or nothing simplified generalizations are you speaking of?

        Perhaps tax cuts and services? Well my friend, you can't have both, unless you borrow the money from overseas. So a smart man would say you have to choose, and another would lay their credit card down and worry about it tomorrow.

  175. "Angry and petulant" describes Harper to a T

  176. This debate was such a yawner. Isn't it time that the political parties work harder to attract more diversity in their leadership? Honestly – This was 4 privileged white dudes working their scripts. This is exactly why the rest of Canada feels little interest or attachment to Canadian politics. May should have been included just to bust up the sausage fest.

  177. This debate was such a yawner. Isn't it time that the political parties work harder to attract more diversity in their leadership? Honestly – This was 4 privileged white dudes working their scripts. This is exactly why the rest of Canada feels little interest or attachment to Canadian politics. May should have been included just to bust up the sausage fest.

    • I don`t think even May could have saved Ignatieff last night.

      • I don't follow your logic. Wait – I get it.. You took my posting as an opportunity to pull out your hyper-partisan knife. Typical.

    • I really don't think lack of interest in politics has anything to do with the leaders and politics in general.

      The reason people shy from politics is because they find it difficult to understand and boring. They can only pay attention to the pattern of someone's tie or how they present themselves rather than the issues.

      Ripping on everyone is much easier. Corporate lackeys. Soulless robots. Stuffy old men. This is easier to understand and speak on as if you know something about it than to make the effort to truly understand the system and it's players.

  178. I don`t think even May could have saved Ignatieff last night.

  179. He's been in that damned bus shaking hands all the time. What the hell do you want from him?

  180. Thanks for that. Brightened my morning.

  181. Most polls I see have had the Tories at about 40% for at least a month now. When has that ever happened before? And I suspect Harper will form the government if he wins the most votes, but as Iggy said in the debate last night, he'll only let him "try", which appears to be code for toppling Harper and forming some kind of a coalition shortly thereafter.

  182. Trust me, the likes of you don't annoy me. I have a life. lol

  183. All the leaders asked him. In unison. Didn't you watch the debate?

  184. Are you implying the court wrote the constitution?

  185. "Stephen Harper was solid; a good performance."

    Don't you mean a safe one? As Not Steven Colbert said above, the status quo won last night, and as Andrew Coyne said, Harper needs to bring the undecided center right votes to his side. Timid references to the Liberal's past(none of which applies to Ignatieff), vague notions to describe the NDP's platform, practically ignoring the Block's vote base, changing the subject on his own past crimes as PM… none of it will achieve that.

  186. I don't follow your logic. Wait – I get it.. You took my posting as an opportunity to pull out your hyper-partisan knife. Typical.

  187. Civics in highschool isn't mandatory. It should be.

  188. Unless they change the whole document. Just stop anonymous coward.

  189. Why do you hate on that guy so much? Is it his policies? Or do you just not like how he looks/stands.

  190. You Liberals now say you respect Parliament, but obviously not on the AG report. Harper can't release anything. You either know that, or you're ignorant. And desperate. Which is it?

  191. Really. You show me a clip of where, IN UNISON, they all shamelessly ask Harper to release a report they know he has no power to release. This I'd like to see. lol

    In fact, what happened was that Iggy interrupted Harper and told him to release the report. The other leaders may have then joined him. It was hard to tell given all the bickering. Nevertheless, whatever they were saying, it was hardly in unison.

  192. Really. You show me a clip of where, IN UNISON, they all shamelessly ask Harper to release a report they know he has no power to release. This I'd like to see. lol

    In fact, what happened was that Iggy interrupted Harper and told him to release the report. The other leaders may have then joined him. It was hard to tell given all the bickering. Nevertheless, whatever they were saying, it was hardly in unison.

  193. I've seen you personally attacked twice on one page Em, once for being a woman, and once for presumably being old.

    I think I know how they vote. With the party of fear and hate!

  194. Yay internet!

  195. You can watch it again on watch.ctv.ca

  196. Yay internet!

  197. Like him or not, Stephen Harper made no major gaffes, absorbed the body blows, kept his cool and looked prime ministerial; a good and safe performance. Will it deliver a majority? I hope not, but it's hard to say. If he gets a minority and manages to stay leader of the party, then the incremental change starts anew. FOX/SunTV will be starting up and I do think it is a key part of the equation – mass messengering.

    As long as the left splits their vote, a safe/good performance might be good enough

  198. Ignatieff relies too much on these "all or nothing" simplified generalizations. He's a smart man and must realize that such sweeping generalizations can not be supported by facts. I wonder if he feels guilty when he uses them as required by political rhetoric?

  199. remember Dion and the Poopin Puffin!?….they "hate" on anyone who isn't like them…..or Liberal

  200. No way, Duceppe is dreamy

  201. Layton wins all the debates, but never wins elections.

  202. To what all or nothing simplified generalizations are you speaking of?

    Perhaps tax cuts and services? Well my friend, you can't have both, unless you borrow the money from overseas. So a smart man would say you have to choose, and another would lay their credit card down and worry about it tomorrow.

  203. For someone who has a life, you spend a lot of time commenting on a blog.

    • I do? lol. Or is it that you just can't stand the fact that someone who disagrees with you sometimes comments on here. lol

      • This retort is just stupid.

  204. For someone who has a life, you spend a lot of time commenting on a blog.

  205. They already released the second draft.

  206. I do? lol. Or is it that you just can't stand the fact that someone who disagrees with you sometimes comments on here. lol

  207. You stay classy.

  208. I think you have a distorted view of what the court does. They interpret the law. Laws can always be changed to reverse court decisions. It might require a constitutional amendment, but it can be done.

  209. No, and no.

  210. So? They have no power to release the final draft. Are some of you simply ignorant of this fact? Or just desperate to score hypocritical points against a prime minister you can't knock down?

  211. It has nothing to do with the notwithstanding clause.

  212. He had a nice bump in the polls after the debate, until CTV released a video they agreed not to in order to make Dion look foolish.

  213. a) not a Liberal

    b) the speaker says it's up to the AG

    c) Harper has a copy.

    d) dilute your koolaid.

  214. Yeah, it happens a lot…and for any reason they can think of…even when they have to make it up.

    They're a fugly bunch of teabaggers.

  215. That was such a blatant spin by Iggy, playing on people's ignorance, that it proves he has become a product of his Liberal handlers.

  216. Yep. Layton's attack on Ignatieff's attendance in the HoC was easily the most devastating of the night. Iggy's response: "How dare you lecture me, young man!".

  217. What was Harper on?

    Watching Stephen Harper in the debate last night I kept thinking of a conversation with a young physician some years ago about how nervous medical students sometimes used beta blockers to get through their oral exams. Beta blockers are risky, but reduce visible signs of stress. I wonder if Mr. Harper had similar chemical help last night? The lifeless eyes, monotone, tunnel vision and general lack of affect speak to a heavy load of chemicals. What amazes me is how most journalists described this as a fine performance in a debate.

    I'll tell you, if a kid turned up in my classroom in the state Harper was in last night, a lot of alarm bells would go off.

  218. What was Harper on?

    Watching Stephen Harper in the debate last night I kept thinking of a conversation with a young physician some years ago about how nervous medical students sometimes used beta blockers to get through their oral exams. Beta blockers are risky, but reduce visible signs of stress. I wonder if Mr. Harper had similar chemical help last night? The lifeless eyes, monotone, tunnel vision and general lack of affect speak to a heavy load of chemicals. What amazes me is how most journalists described this as a fine performance in a debate.

    I'll tell you, if a kid turned up in my classroom in the state Harper was in last night, a lot of alarm bells would go off.

    • It's not the first time people have suggested Harper was doped up on some kind of medication during a debate. I don't know enough about it to judge, but I get creeped out by that smirking liar anyway.

      • But seeing Iggy quote one of the greatest mass murderer's Mao Zedong's view on Democracy, or Jacky boy hopping up and down like he's in a high school play is OK?

        so your take on this is pick the Ivory Towered debutante ( i know what it means, and its applicable with this guy) or the failed Car Salesman.

        We are doomed!

        • Run along, little fella, the grownups are talking.

  219. What was Harper on?

    Watching Stephen Harper in the debate last night I kept thinking of a conversation with a young physician some years ago about how nervous medical students sometimes used beta blockers to get through their oral exams. Beta blockers are risky, but reduce visible signs of stress. I wonder if Mr. Harper had similar chemical help last night? The lifeless eyes, monotone, tunnel vision and general lack of affect speak to a heavy load of chemicals. What amazes me is how most journalists described this as a fine performance in a debate.

    I%E2%80%99ll tell you, if a kid turned up in my classroom in the state Harper was in last night, a lot of alarm bells would go off.

  220. I submit to you that if more people had wanted slavery than not, we'd still have it.

    For racism, more people don't want it than do, so we have the right to be free from racism. Does that mean we *are* free from racism? Of course not. Simply because society has decided upon a right doesn't mean that decision is never violated.

  221. Apparently, by Aaron's sour comments he agrees that Harper was the winner.

    Suck it up Princess….Iggy had his chance and he blew it.

  222. Apparently, by Aaron's sour comments he agrees that Harper was the winner.

    Suck it up Princess….Iggy had his chance and he blew it.

  223. "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." – Margaret Mead.

  224. Yes. By convincing the majority.

  225. No, the majority never vote on these things.

  226. “I don't accept the truth of these attacks,” Mr. Harper pleaded.

    I'm glad someone else caught that :)

  227. “I don't accept the truth of these attacks,” Mr. Harper pleaded.

    I'm glad someone else caught that :)

  228. “I don%E2%80%99t accept the truth of these attacks,” Mr. Harper pleaded.

    I'm glad someone else caught that :)

  229. I really don't think lack of interest in politics has anything to do with the leaders and politics in general.

    The reason people shy from politics is because they find it difficult to understand and boring. They can only pay attention to the pattern of someone's tie or how they present themselves rather than the issues.

    Ripping on everyone is much easier. Corporate lackeys. Soulless robots. Stuffy old men. This is easier to understand and speak on as if you know something about it than to make the effort to truly understand the system and it's players.

  230. Sadly, I learned nothing that I didn't know already.

    Harper's a sneering unattractive (in all ways) man who's position is: ignore what I do to your democracy; care only what I do to the economy. (Incidentally, though I am aware of all laws against such comparisons, that is precisely the platform the Nazi's ran on to get elected in 1933 – after which, they promptly did away with democracy).

    Ignatieff's a trier and I want to like him, I wish he would do better, but he is always falling short.

    I like Jack Layton, but does that mean I am going to vote for his Party?

    And Duceppe is the best scrapper but he will never be fighting for me so the point is pointless.

    Thus, the first debate changed nothing for me, and according to the polls, for no one else either. And now the latest scandal – the G8 boondoggle AG report – is lost and passed by … while the polls stagnate drearily on …

  231. Sadly, I learned nothing that I didn't know already.

    Harper's a sneering unattractive (in all ways) man who's position is: ignore what I do to your democracy; care only what I do to the economy. (Incidentally, though I am aware of all laws against such comparisons, that is precisely the platform the Nazi's ran on to get elected in 1933 – after which, they promptly did away with democracy).

    Ignatieff's a trier and I want to like him, I wish he would do better, but he is always falling short.

    I like Jack Layton, but does that mean I am going to vote for his Party?

    And Duceppe is the best scrapper but he will never be fighting for me so the point is pointless.

    Thus, the first debate changed nothing for me, and according to the polls, for no one else either. And now the latest scandal – the G8 boondoggle AG report – is lost and passed by … while the polls stagnate drearily on …

  232. You must not have owned a company before , We need the breaks , we need to put people back to work.
    try to bring in new companies into Canada, with the wages we have here. I am concidering moving my company to mexico.
    I can hadly make it here , because of all the taxes we have. Get your head out of the sand and pay attention to what is going on around you, we have lost 300000 manufacturing jos to Mexico , China ,india and south america. You think by taxing small and large corparation is going to help. Wake up

  233. Well, when Britain decided to ban slavery, how many people had the vote? No women had the vote so the majority of people did not have a say in the matter. Probably at that time only men who owned a certain amount of property could vote. So talking about a "majority" doesn't mean that much without considering the context: a majority of all people? Or of those who have the power?

    I haven't read Adam Hochschild's book about Britain's ending of slavery, but it is clear from this excellent review that it took many years of work to persuade people that it should be done:

    "…The book that Hochschild gives us is valuable instead for its magnificent portrait of how activism works — by coincidences, friendships, patience, and stubbornness, by carefully built networks and belief systems that change slowly or suddenly like climate or the weather. There is the protracted timeline of change: a preliminary state in which almost no one cares about slaves; another moment when it seems like everyone in England does…" http://hnn.us/roundup/entries/10295.html

  234. Exactly.

  235. Exactly.

  236. "…the Charter only pertains to that which is proscribed by law."

    No.

  237. It's not the first time people have suggested Harper was doped up on some kind of medication during a debate. I don't know enough about it to judge, but I get creeped out by that smirking liar anyway.

  238. Well, frankly, sometimes your claims are incorrect, Emily, but I often vote you up anyway because often the ones who argue with you are so obnoxious.

  239. LOL damned with faint praise.

    My 'claims' are not incorrect, you just disagree with some of them. It's an assumption on your part that you are right, and I am wrong.

    But thanks for the support anyway. ;)

  240. Yeah, I saw the poll Emily is talking about on the liveblog. It was fairly early in the debate, when Harper was getting ratled and I hoped he would lose his temper, but then it looked like his medication kicked in and he spent the rest of the debate in a creepy miasma of smirking lies. G&M did not have another poll on the liveblog last night, though maybe they have added one since.

    Meanwhile the Edmonton Journal has Ignatieff winning:
    http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/decision-cana

  241. It's available on the internet. I'm not sure maybe the CBC news channel replayed it?

  242. Well, didn't the broadcasters use those people as props to begin with? Who decided which questions to ask?

  243. As a Canadian living in the US, I watched the entire debate on the Web. Canada needs a change.
    The stoic figure of Harper, don't let him Con Canada again.
    Ignatieff would be a good change for the better, I think.

  244. As a Canadian living in the US, I watched the entire debate on the Web. Canada needs a change.
    The stoic figure of Harper, don't let him Con Canada again.
    Ignatieff would be a good change for the better, I think.

    • If we wanted Mao we would fly to Chine and dig him up instead!

  245. As a Canadian living in the US, I watched the entire debate on the Web. Canada needs a change.
    The stoic figure of Harper, don%E2%80%99t let him Con Canada again.
    Ignatieff would be a good change for the better, I think.

  246. I was disappointed in all of them. I kept on waiting for the leaders to actually answer the questions they had been asked instead of just saying 'this is why x,y,z is a bad person and you shouldn't vote for them'. Ok, we get it. Can you please answer the question and tell us why you are better? What are your policies? The questions were good ones and whoever answered them the best should get to be the next Prime Minister. Instead, we got two hours of watching whiny brats and another two coming up tonight.
    Where is the substance?

  247. I was disappointed in all of them. I kept on waiting for the leaders to actually answer the questions they had been asked instead of just saying 'this is why x,y,z is a bad person and you shouldn't vote for them'. Ok, we get it. Can you please answer the question and tell us why you are better? What are your policies? The questions were good ones and whoever answered them the best should get to be the next Prime Minister. Instead, we got two hours of watching whiny brats and another two coming up tonight.
    Where is the substance?

  248. no not a muppet, that requires a live Human with a hand up his a….. no your right it is a muppet!

  249. But seeing Iggy quote one of the greatest mass murderer's Mao Zedong's view on Democracy, or Jacky boy hopping up and down like he's in a high school play is OK?

    so your take on this is pick the Ivory Towered debutante ( i know what it means, and its applicable with this guy) or the failed Car Salesman.

    We are doomed!

  250. I like what you did there put Harper and Nazi in the same paragraph, cept the Nazi's were the Nationalist Socialist party.

    I figure that would be the NDP they certainly fit the Socialist part, as for the Libs with Iggy quoting Mao, that now places them firmly in the Communist side of things! :)

  251. I like what you did there put Harper and Nazi in the same paragraph, cept the Nazi's were the Nationalist Socialist party.

    I figure that would be the NDP they certainly fit the Socialist part, as for the Libs with Iggy quoting Mao, that now places them firmly in the Communist side of things! :)

  252. If we wanted Mao we would fly to Chine and dig him up instead!

  253. Don't confuse laws with rights.

    Society never formally votes on rights, we just decide them, whether consciously or unconsciously. Legislation and votes may follow, but certainly don't always, and sometimes legislation tries to define rights, but if the majority doesn't agree, as with prohibition, it is the law that fails, not the decision of society.

    Society shifts because the opinions of the majority shift. If not in favor of the idea, at least far enough away from opposition to it that not enough people will fight to keep it.

  254. It wasn't much of a debate, Harper didn't even engage with the other 3 leaders. In fact he didn't even need to be in the same room.

    Harper could have started each statement with "That 's not true" and then start into his talking points.

  255. 'Society never formally votes on rights, we just decide them, whether consciously or unconsciously'

    Oh I see. Sorry, I was unaware you were counting on magic.

  256. Sometimes it's merely an assumption, but sometimes it's knowing that I'm right.

  257. Must be comforting.

  258. Hmmm…couple new polls out.

    One has Harper's folks 21 points ahead…

    Ekos has conservatives at 6 points ahead.

    I think I'll wait til May 2nd before I take any polls seriously.

  259. Hmmm…couple new polls out.

    One has Harper's folks 21 points ahead…

    Ekos has conservatives at 6 points ahead.

    I think I'll wait til May 2nd before I take any polls seriously.

  260. Try to imagine how little the average voter cares about Kevin Page!

  261. Only the most broad (sloppy) reading of the definition of court would call parliament a species of court. The Crown convenes parliament to advise the Crown, but this isn't anything like a monarch holding court or the sitting of the courts. It might have been historically, but in point of law or fact is certainly is not now.
    A court was set up at the behest of the British parliament, the High Court of Justice, for the trial of Charles I, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trial_of_Charles_I, so he was not tried in parliament.
    The Canadian parliament did not grow out of the Common law, Canadian Jurisprudence grew out of the Common Law. Canadian parliament didn't grow out of anything. It was brought into existence by an act of the British parliament. One day it wasn't there, the next day it was. It shares heritage with the Mother Parliament, but that is an entirely different matter.
    The Crown enacted the Charter when it gave royal assent. It was an act of parliament, yes, that was enacted by the Crown. The parliament can not overturn or amend it tomorrow, as the parliament deals mostly with statutory law. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms is significantly more resistant to such amendments.

  262. Try to imagine how much the average voter cares about our finances.

  263. I would take issue with the term sloppy.
    Certainly the lines between the the judiciary and Parliament are blurry and as of today mostly untested. But Speaker Milliken's review of Derek Lee's book on Parliamentary procedure describes the committee process and the actions of the house in such a way that it acts very much like a court proceeding. Subpoena power, and punishments for perjury etc.
    As for the bit about Parliament not being a court for the prosecution of King Charles. The court was set up through the house of commons, but was not ratified by the lords. I misspoke when I said parliament, it was the house of commons that tried the king and it was the parliamentarians who found him guilty as his jury. In the absence of the Lords it technically was Parliament, but given the make up of the prosecution it pretty much was.
    Heritage and legal framework for the smooth running of the country's affairs. I was brief there too.
    Maybe the charter couldn't be changed to tomorrow but that was a figure of speech. Parliament still has the power, after due procedure of course, to amend the charter.

  264. Harper scored four primeministerial knockout punches last night. The fourth was the media.

  265. The average voter doesn't like liars. Conservatives are liars.

  266. Keeps me warm on chilly spring nights.

  267. That's what he did, except when he started with "Let me be clear"; not unlike Nixon's "Let me be perfectly clear…"

  268. That's what he did, except when he started with "Let me be clear"; not unlike Nixon's "Let me be perfectly clear…"

  269. Run along, little fella, the grownups are talking.

  270. I will not retract "sloppy" when, after objecting to it, you go on to admit as much.
    It is not certain that the lines between the judiciary and parliament are blurry. There is a very clear delineation in statutory law and in point of practice with case law. Parliament authors, Crown enacts, Executive enforces, Courts determine. Don't waste your time fussing around with imaginary similarities that have no basis in Canadian parliamentary practice. Names matter. It matters that it was not the H o C that tried HRH Charles I, because he was tried in a court. If parliament (H o C or H o L) was a court, why would there be any need to set up a new one to conduct the trial? Pretty much does not count. Tell the judge that you pretty much managed to stop at the stop sign when you accidentally ran over someone. To call the Canadian H o C a court seems, prima facia, baseless and sloppy.
    The fact that it shares commonalities with a court of law does not make it a court of law. My car shares commonalities with a horse drawn buggy, but it would be called one only as a figure of speech or sloppy comparison.
    The H o C would be the proper arena for any proposed changes the CCRF to be tabled, but in point of practice we are talking about several orders of magnitude of increased difficulty in affecting changes compared to normal statutory law. That is a difference that makes a difference.

    • Again blurry doesn't mean sloppy it just means not actually decided in law. That seems to be the way that both Parliament and the judiciary want to leave it too.
      The court organised by the HoC was another committee of parliament. It was conceived by parliament, staffed by parliament and run by parliament. Sounds like both a court and parliament to me. Ducks walking and quacking and all that.
      And after all that you still cannot bring yourself to say that Parliament can change the charter. Yes it is a lengthy, difficult etc process, but Parliament can still change the charter.

      • If you prefer to attribute your mishandling of the terms to lack of or faulty vision as opposed to overly broad and sloppy, fill your boots.

        Which court are you talking about? How does your description of how it is organized nullify the fact that a court of law and parliament are not the same thing and that parliament is not a court? Why are you having such a hard time getting it? If you think I am wrong, provide me a third party reference to bolster your claim.

        What part of "The H o C would be the proper arena for any proposed changes the CCRF to be tabled…" would lead you to believe that I think the H o C wouldn't be involved in changes to the CCRF? (And if it was a court of law, why are the courts the venues for charter challenges?)

      • OK here is a link that does bolster your assertions http://www.parliament.uk/about/living-heritage/ev
        But that is the UK. Although the UK House of Lords still does Judicial review, the Canadian Senate does not have similar powers.

        Therefore, visa vie the original post of this thread, in archaic (or if not archaic then certainly uncommon) usage and in the UK, parliament does have its origin as a court. It is my assertion that, in Canada, Parliament ( HoC and Senate) is almost to never referred to as a court and it isn't construed as the highest court in the land. I am saying that the highest court in the land is the SCC.

        You might find this article interesting: http://faculty.marianopolis.edu/c.belanger/quebec
        It talks about how the Supremacy of Parliament has been curtailed by the CCRF, leading to de facto supremacy of the SCC in a number of instances.

        Again, this all goes back to my original assertion of sloppiness. A fault I might also be guilty of. Yes, parliament has it's ancient origins as a court of the Crown. Yes, it is technically proper in some countries, especially the UK, to call parliament, the High Court of Parliament. In Canadian usage, as it is understood by the vast majority of Canadians, the Parliament of Canada is not thought of as a court because the Law Courts are thought of as a courts referring to the evolving distinction between the branches of government.

        • Maybe my history might have led to conflating aspects of the two institutions sorry.
          Nice links

          Also I love the
          "as it is understood by the vast majority of Canadians"
          The vast majority of Canadians thought a coalition was unconstitutional and that we all elected the Prime Minister back in 2008. I would rather that discussions like this take place where actual points are raised that have some foundation in reality. If that makes me elitist because I like to understand what is, rather than what I think is should be then guilty as charged.

          • It turns out that the reason that it is so understood by the vast majority of Canadians is because that is in fact how the law and parliamentary practice sees it too. See the link provided below.

            It is important to keep in mind that, while the UK has the Mother parliament, practice is not consistent or universal across all Westminster style parliaments. The concept "The Canadian Parliament is the Highest Court" did violence to my unconsciously correct understanding of it's character. I am glad to now be consciously correct.

      • Here is another link that would severely weaken your claim: http://www2.parl.gc.ca/MarleauMontpetit/DocumentV

        Note how this page makes a distinction between the UK and Canadian practice and how it says that the Canadian Parliament has never had a judicial component. Note how in saying that Canadian Parliament has never had a judicial component that the authoritative article is tying a judicial role with the courts. This would bolster my assertion that the Canadian Parliament is not a court because it does not have a judicial function.

        • Indeed but Milliken's review of Lee's book on Parliamentary powers casts at least a degree of doubt on the distinction you make above. http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Sites/LOP/Infoparl/english

          Lee lists the powers of inquest that belong to Parliament and
          ".. he describes Parliament's penal powers to punish for contempt and discusses, somewhat inconclusively in light of a dearth of precedents, the impact of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. "
          Penal powers mean powers of judgement and punishment to me anyway and when combined with,
          "Parliament's powers to ask questions are virtually limitless…"
          It indicates the presence of a very special court indeed.

          This is what I mean by blurry, there is a fair bit out there that prevents the assuming of absolute positions on this. Right now I'm trying to track down a copy of Lee's book to research more, but I do respect Milliken's knowledge and opinion on this.

          • Perhaps, if Canada elects another minority government, we shall see a re-animation of these vestigial functions. This election was purportedly called on contempt of parliament grounds. But there is, to my mind, a very important reason why these already limited judicial functions have been, here to fore, allowed to go fallow : partisanship (and rarity of minority government which are the only circumstance under which the opposition is likely to be able to use them). Parliamentary proceedings against another member just can't achieve a standard of impartiality that Canadians expect from the judiciary.

            This is why Parliament has delegated these functions, in accordance with historical practice, to the bodies we now think of as separate entities: the courts. I suppose in a country where courts are seeming to have legislative powers, it might not be unusual (but most unwelcome) for the legislative branch to reanimate dead judicial powers.

            Interesting.

          • Very interesting
            I believe that is twice now that we have had a discussion that began with seemingly entrenched positions, but both resulted in me being much the wiser for it.
            Until next time.

  271. I will not retract "sloppy" when, after objecting to it, you go on to admit as much.
    It is not certain that the lines between the judiciary and parliament are blurry. There is a very clear delineation in statutory law and in point of practice with case law. Parliament authors, Crown enacts, Executive enforces, Courts determine. Don't waste your time fussing around with imaginary similarities that have no basis in Canadian parliamentary practice. Names matter. It matters that it was not the H o C that tried HRH Charles I, because he was tried in a court. If parliament (H o C or H o L) was a court, why would there be any need to set up a new one to conduct the trial? Pretty much does not count. Tell the judge that you pretty much managed to stop at the stop sign when you accidentally ran over someone. To call the Canadian H o C a court seems, prima facia, baseless and sloppy.
    The fact that it shares commonalities with a court of law does not make it a court of law. My car shares commonalities with a horse drawn buggy, but it would be called one only as a figure of speech or sloppy comparison.
    The H o C would be the proper arena for any proposed changes the CCRF to be tabled, but in point of practice we are talking about several orders of magnitude of increased difficulty in affecting changes compared to normal statutory law. That is a difference that makes a difference.

  272. For the liberal media, Canada ends at the boundaries of Toronto.Beyond that point there be knuckledraggers.

  273. Again blurry doesn't mean sloppy it just means not actually decided in law. That seems to be the way that both Parliament and the judiciary want to leave it too.
    The court organised by the HoC was another committee of parliament. It was conceived by parliament, staffed by parliament and run by parliament. Sounds like both a court and parliament to me. Ducks walking and quacking and all that.
    And after all that you still cannot bring yourself to say that Parliament can change the charter. Yes it is a lengthy, difficult etc process, but Parliament can still change the charter.

  274. If you prefer to attribute your mishandling of the terms to lack of or faulty vision as opposed to overly broad and sloppy, fill your boots.

    Which court are you talking about? How does your description of how it is organized nullify the fact that a court of law and parliament are not the same thing and that parliament is not a court? Why are you having such a hard time getting it? If you think I am wrong, provide me a third party reference to bolster your claim.

    What part of "The H o C would be the proper arena for any proposed changes the CCRF to be tabled…" would lead you to believe that I think the H o C wouldn't be involved in changes to the CCRF? (And if it was a court of law, why are the courts the venues for charter challenges?)

  275. Every party at the debate agreed to lower taxes on medium and small businesses, that wasn't at issue. Even the NDP were in favour of tax breaks… And that is on top of already competitive tax rates amongst G20 nations. There is no issue with alleviating taxes on small businesses, as you can generally be sure that the money they generate will stay within the communities and circulate in the nation.

    This is not an issue that concerns small business… this is about large corporations. I can't speak to your specific situation but I work currently in a mid-sized manufacturing company that is generating around 25% profit margins. The stated goal is to reach 30%, and any tax break we recieve is going towards reaching that goal. Any plans to raise wages? No. Hire more employees? No.

    There is no criticism toward the company in that, raising wages out of charity will only forfeit a competitive advantage, and hiring new employees only makes sense if there were a market to sell them to. As it stands our markets are so mature that the only means of expanding is through taking market share, which obviously only takes jobs from your competitors rather than creates new ones.

  276. Every party at the debate agreed to lower taxes on medium and small businesses, that wasn't at issue. Even the NDP were in favour of tax breaks… And that is on top of already competitive tax rates amongst G20 nations. There is no issue with alleviating taxes on small businesses, as you can generally be sure that the money they generate will stay within the communities and circulate in the nation.

    This is not an issue that concerns small business… this is about large corporations. I can't speak to your specific situation but I work currently in a mid-sized manufacturing company that is generating around 25% profit margins. The stated goal is to reach 30%, and any tax break we recieve is going towards reaching that goal. Any plans to raise wages? No. Hire more employees? No.

    There is no criticism toward the company in that, raising wages out of charity will only forfeit a competitive advantage, and hiring new employees only makes sense if there were a market to sell them to. As it stands our markets are so mature that the only means of expanding is through taking market share, which obviously only takes jobs from your competitors rather than creates new ones.

    • The point being that lowering the corporate tax rate, when it is already very competitive, does not grow the economy because it doesn't grow the domestic market. You dont hire new workers to build product you cant sell, and you dont raise wages without incentive. Money put into the top of the economy, stays at the top.

      If you were to find a way to inject that money into the bottom of the economy, however, it would find its way up to the top very quickly and would give companies a reason to expand and a reason to raise their wage level. Businesses make remarkable things happen when they have to work for the money they are getting.

  277. The point being that lowering the corporate tax rate, when it is already very competitive, does not grow the economy because it doesn't grow the domestic market. You dont hire new workers to build product you cant sell, and you dont raise wages without incentive. Money put into the top of the economy, stays at the top.

    If you were to find a way to inject that money into the bottom of the economy, however, it would find its way up to the top very quickly and would give companies a reason to expand and a reason to raise their wage level. Businesses make remarkable things happen when they have to work for the money they are getting.

  278. Iggy was getting pretty theatrical at times, almost losing his temper, constant whining and physical wriggling.

    He looked un-prime-ministerial, a somewhat unstable, ranting idealogue.

    At times, he seemed only his next breath away from his own Howard Dean moment ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5FzCeV0ZFc ) except in his own bitter, cynical way.

    Sorry Liberals, I don't want Ignatieff as my Prime Minister.

  279. nope – Emily has said it numerous time, so it must be true. This is how the left works – reality is an abstract that only needs be ignored.

  280. This retort is just stupid.

  281. howdtheyvote.ca

    135 missed votes. Parliament sat for 149 working days. He's the worst. It is a fact.

  282. I think there will be a dip in Tory numbers when voters are made fully aware of just how serious the CPC abuses went. They made fraudulent claims in the name of the AG to conceal very serious abuses of public trust before Parliament. If voters will turn a blind eye to that kind of behaviour it sets a very disturbing trend for our democracy.

    Im expecting, and hoping for, another minority. Minority governments are at least somewhat accountable for their actions, and far more representational of the Canadian population. When one party can get 30% of the national vote, achieve a majority, and run rough-shod over the other 70% of Canadians that is not democracy.