The Commons: The tiny, perfect Conservative

‘We are not about symbols. We are about real action.’

The Scene. She is a pair of dimples in a room full of jowls.

Meet Michelle Rempel, the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of the Environment. She is short and smiley and perfectly patronizing. She speaks without holding a script, gestures with confidence and seems even to listen to what her counterparts are saying (even if only in search of a turn of phrase she can turn back on her opponent). Only 31 and barely six months into her first term in Parliament, she is already feigning indignation like she was born here. And so the government side is surely thankful that Peter Kent has been out of town this last little while.

For much of the fall, the Minister of the Environment had been struggling to keep up with the NDP’s Megan Leslie. Mr. Kent glowered and Ms. Leslie mocked. Mr. Kent grumbled and Ms. Leslie sighed. He was one of several grumpy old men lined up at the far end of the room, she was quick and snappy and a bright face that stood each day in obvious contrast.

Then, with Mr. Kent’s departure to Durban, along came Ms. Rempel. She stood confidently and sneered cheerfully. She accused the other side of plotting to devastate the national economy and questioned their patriotism. She spoke of “real action”  and “strong action” and having not only a “strong action plan,” but also an “action-focused plan.” She was sarcastic and caustic without all the gloom. ”Mr. Speaker, imagine a place where 75 per cent of our electricity is generated by sources that do not emit greenhouse gases, or where a government invests billions of dollars in clean energy technology, or where there is one of the most stringent regulatory frameworks in the world,” she mused one day. “Wait a second; that is Canada.”

To open today’s set-to, Ms. Leslie suggested that the Harper government was turning Canada into a “laughingstock” so far as the discussions in Durban are concerned. Ms. Rempel stood looking solemn, even pausing, somewhat dramatically, before she began her response. “Mr. Speaker, Canada is a nation of 33 million people who emit less than 2 per cent of the world’s global greenhouse gas emissions,” she said, somewhat weakly. “In spite of this, Canada is not a laughingstock. It is a world leader in saying we need domestic action at home. We have done that. We have also committed to coming to the table and saying all major emitters need to be part of this agreement. This is not a laughingstock matter. This is something our nation should be proud of. I would ask my colleague opposite to respect our country.”

This was not Ms. Rempel’s finest moment and Ms. Leslie pressed her advantage. “Mr. Speaker, it is not surprising that the parliamentary secretary may not have speaking notes to the minister’s announcement because he is making up policy on the fly,” she chided. “Yesterday, he changed his tune. He is now lecturing countries, saying that they have to join a binding climate deal for 2015. The government has no credibility after doing its best to sabotage the Durban talks. Now I think it is just trying to save face. Instead of its job-killing approach or its members lecturing by themselves, alone in the corner, why will the government not try co-operating with the world community to work toward an energy economy future for Canada and the world instead of making of climate change policy on the fly?”

Ms. Rempel seized on the slightest of segues. “Mr. Speaker, when we are talking about lecturing,” she came back, “my colleague opposite travelled to the United States and lectured the United States, lobbying against our jobs here in Canada.”

This was more like it.

Indeed, suitably warmed up, Ms. Rempel later went after two Liberals with zeal. “Mr. Speaker, when the member opposite talks about no credible plan, I sure hope she is referring to her party’s inability to have a plan when it signed on to the Kyoto protocol,” she snapped at Kirsty Duncan. “Furthermore, the member referred to the Kyoto protocol as an important symbol for climate change. We are not about symbols. We are about real action.”

Then, with surely her finest 30 seconds so far, she took aim at Justin Trudeau. “Mr. Speaker, I would like to remind my colleague opposite of a few things with regard to environment policy and energy policy. First, emissions increased in this country under their government, and a policy that he should be especially familiar with, the National Energy Policy, lost thousands of jobs across the country.”

The House erupted in noise. The Speaker called for order. Ms. Rempel added an Al Gore reference—”inconvenient truths”—for good measure.

She had looked serious in her interventions all afternoon, but back in her seat she beamed. She will probably be Foreign Affairs Minister by summer.

The Stats. National security, aboriginal affairs and ethics, five questions each. The Canadian Wheat Board, infrastructure and the environment, four questions each. Crime, three questions. Military procurement, seniors and trade, two questions each. Food safety, fisheries, veterans and affordable housing, one question each.

Stephen Harper, seven answers. Julian Fantino, six answers. Michelle Rempel, four answers. Gerry Ritz, Kerry-Lynne Findlay, John Baird and John Duncan, three answers each. Steven Fletcher, Pierre Poilievre, Alice Wong and Ed Fast, two answers each. Randy Kamp, Eve Adams and Diane Finley, one answer each.

The Commons: The tiny, perfect Conservative

  1. She’ll probably be Environment Minister by . . . when is Kent expected back?

    • LOL the Blue Barbie Babe outdoing the former Global announcer?

      Bad enough he was done in by his brother!

      • Talk about condescending Emily. Don’t you have any respect for women.

        • Hollinm…even for you, that was a stupid remark.

        • Hollinm, you don’t understand. It is perfectly acceptable for progressive-minded folks to make comments with sexist undertones. When they do it, they are being clever and ironic. When right wingers do it, we are being hateful and misogynist. Don’t you understand the rules? Wherever did you get the idea that we were allowed to use the same language they do? 

          • Trouble is I do understand it but I have no intention of being sidelined by the “progressives” that haunt this blog. So they can make their rude, arrogant and snide comments. It just encourages me.

          • Don’t let anyone get to you, h, you just keep on shovelling.

          • Talk about shovelling it. Anybody who reads this blog knows that the left is an angry bunch these days. Stripped of their power base, frustrated they cannot effect change and watching as a Conservative government acts on their election promises using the power that is granted to all majority governments. The squealing is palpable as each days goes by.

      • the Blue Barbie Babe

        Very nice coming from you Emily, after tossing around the “misogynist” accusations in the other thread earlier today, and lamenting about why would women ever enter politics…

        It’s all just an act for you, isn’t it? Do you actually believe anything you write here?

        • LOL I’m not the one acting, hon

          Con women are to be treated with respect….all other women are just ‘HOs’, right?

          • What are you talking about? Here’s a tip, “sweetie”. If you’re going to try and throw my words back in my face, you MIGHT want to make sure that they are my words and not somebody else’s. I mean, if accuracy is something that you strive for. I’ve seen no evidence that you do.

          • Cons are misogynists.
             
            You are a Con

            Therefore…if the shoe fits….wear it honeybunch.

        • john g….this is nothing….Emily waxes on about the value of an education including a BA but now when “the Blue Barbie” has one, it is “just a BA”.

    • This portfolio should come with danger pay.

  2. A surprising and shocking move by the old chess master. The man has an seemingly endless supply of pawns.

  3. Proves the quality of the candidate is much more important than a gender based quantity of women in Parliamnet.

    This “Blue Barbie Babe” as meowEmily calls her,
    did not win her riding due to quotas nor bought with incentives.

    • LOL Cons pick women candidates for their looks not their brains.

      She wouldn’t be getting any publicity if she looked like Deb Grey.

      She has a BA…big whoop.

      PS when men recognize that another man is getting ahead on false reasons…money, connections…and says so….that doesn’t get called ‘catty’. Why?

      What era are you in, pal?

      • Oh I see now, 
        when you commented that Ms Rempel was “outdoing the former Global announcer”,
        you meant she was prettier than Minister Kent.

        Even Minister Kent would agree with that!

        • Really?

          You sure are big on assumptions.

    • I’m casting my memory back to Helena Guergis as P.S. in Foreign affairs.  That ended well.

      • And Ruby Dhalla, now she is beautiful!

          • And apparently enjoys having her car washed by the Filipino servants.

      • Good non sequitar Jan. Desparate to have a relevant point I guess.

    • This “Blue Barbie Babe” as meowEmily calls her,
      did not win her riding due to quotas nor bought with incentives.

      No, she won it by being a Conservative in Calgary Centre. No offence on her, I’ve never heard of her until today, but it wasn’t her strong campaigning that got her elected. A puppy-eating alien bent on destroying the human race could have been the candidate and won:

      “Hmm, I don’t agree with his policy of death to humans, and I am rather uncomfortable with his eating of puppies, but Zorg is not a Liberal so he has my vote!”

      That said, I think most of you guys are missing the point with your petty squabbles. At the start of the piece she came off as a strong, intelligent MP with great communication skills. In addition, she is a female Conservative who did not appear to be a slave to the head-exploding talking points of her colleagues. It seemed that Ms. Leslie may had met her match. Instead she proved once again that appearances are deceiving, and at the first sign of trouble she ran for the typical Conservative shelter of childish attempts to change the subject and (surprise, surprise!) blaming the Liberals.

      And really, that’s the most depressing part. She could be amazingly intelligent, and a future leader of Canada. Unfortunately, we will never know. She, like pretty much everyone in her party, is a slave to the PMO communications staff.

      • Kind of like how the NDP were elected in Quebec?
         
        Hey, she my not live in Quebec, have ever been to Quebec, speak French, or be able to find Quebec on a map, but she sure is pretty. Oh, and she can serve beer during caucus meetings.
         
        Give me a break.
         
        A baby eating rabid monkey could have been elected in Quebec if you slapped a blonde wig on it, put a beer in it’s hand, and a bright orange hat on it’s head.

        • Sure they’re exactly the same…the ndp were elected because Jack ran a positive up beat campaign and the other guys got in in Calgary cuz they ran a posi….sigh, why bother?

        • Actually, no. It’s not really like how the NDP was elected in Quebec.

          You see, the NDP vote in Quebec was more of a group protest vote. Quebec has a very left-wing bent to it. That was the main driver behind the Bloc’s support, not the separatist part. However, the Bloc had outlived its usefulness and Quebecers realized this. To that end, there was really very little choice. The Liberals were still on their downward trajectory, and the Conservatives have long written Quebec off. That left the NDP. Whether or not the NDP will continue their success in Quebec remains to be seen; pretty much every seat they now have is up for grabs again in the next election, regardless of the candidate. 

          Alberta has long been a right-wing party, and the Calgary seats are the safest Conservative seats in Canada (and have been for some time.) In the next election, the Calgary seats the Conservatives now have will remain in Conservative hands, regardless of who is running in them.

          My point was not to bash Alberta or Ms. Rempel, but rather to counter wilson’s claim that it was hard work that allowed her to win her riding. To lose that seat, she would have to actively campaign against herself, and even then it would be close.

          But hey, you just keep on with your ignorant trolling… it really helps to counter the view that Reform/Conservatives are mean-spirited cranks who could care less about anyone but themselves.   

          • Ah but you forget that the NDP did take a seat away from a Conservative….what was his name….oh yes Rahim Jaffer. So it is possible.

          • True, but that was in Edmonton, not Calgary.

      • Oh you are funny! : )

      • Calgary Centre is not as much of a right-wing slam-dunk riding as you suggest.  Remember that Joe Clark beat Lee Richardson there.

        • It was Eric Lowthier wasn’t it? Lee Richardson was another riding. 

      • She didn’t even show up for debates.  They put a potted plant on her chair.

      • Joe Clark won that riding as recently as 12 years ago, beating out the Alliance candidate. The only Alberta riding not to go Alliance in that election. So much for your theory. Don’t bother saying that Joe Clark was a conservative. He was never seen as a conservative in AB, nor was he ever embraced by right wing voters. 

        • Don’t bother saying that Joe Clark was a conservative. He was never seen
          as a conservative in AB, nor was he ever embraced by right wing voters.

          True, but he was more right wing than the Liberals or NDP. A look back at the election results shows the riding going to a right or centre right party for the past few decades, and the combined Reorm/PC vote being consistently higher than the combined Liberal/NDP vote. When the Reform and PCs “merged”, the new combined party kept the general vote share. Any support the party lost in the riding did not go to the Liberals or NDP.

          Also, it seems this is no longer a theory, as it seems Ms Rempel was a peekaboo candidate. She was not the only such candidate in the election, nor were the Conservatives the only party to have them. But such candidates are interchangeable. People in the riding were voting for the party, not the candidate.

          Now I suspect that Ms. Rempel had to put in a lot more effort in securing the Conservative nomination than those of the Quebec NDP did, as I assume there is high demand amongst aspiring politicians to run in safe seats. But party nominations are party business. For all I know (or care) she could have had to fight several potential CPC nominees to the death, or she could have been acclaimed as a result of a devine vision, or anywhere in between. But to say she won the actual election as a result of her own hard work is a generous distortion at best. The seat has been a bastion for the right and center-right parties for a virtual lifetime.

          • As a Red Tory, Clark was to the left of the Liberals on many issues. He certainly was not seen as the “right wing” choice in 2000, shortly after he participated in the gay pride parade. 

            I never said Rempel one because of her own hard work. However, it is hardly her fault that she ran in a riding they were expected to win anyway. I was simply pointing out that it isn’t as conservative a riding as you seem to think. The right wing party on the ballot did lose the riding just a dozen years ago. 

          • No, the farther right-wing party won the riding. Whether you agree or not, the PC party was on the right of the political spectrum. You can put all sorts of local qualifications on what the local political junkies believe, but to the general public the PC party was on the right. It was obviously to the left of you, but you are hardly representative of the hypothetical non-partisan centrist. (EDIT: for the record, neither am I nor arguably anyone who comments on political blogs)

            Look, I freely admit that if the PC party was still in existence this would not be a particularly safe Conservative seat, but history shows that the people of that riding tend to vote to the right.

            Every riding in Canada is either a safe seat for a particular party or else it’s a toss up. Some seats are safe due to a candidate, while most are due to traditional community leanings. In the traditionally safe seats, people tend to vote for the party, not the individual. In the sake of Conservative seats, it is a fair assumption to assume a traditionally PC seat that went CPC in 2005 is now a traditionally Conservative seat.

          • If attending a gay pride parade discredits you in the riding, I would suggest the riding is far right wing.

        • Ah, that explains why I love Joe Clark so much.  All other politicians are compared to him in my books.  Few rarely even hold a candle to him.

          • And I voted PC once when he was leader.  That should be the kiss of death for him on here with the Cons.  Sorry, Joe. 

        • ‘As recently as 12 years ago’ – LOL.  That’s like a century for the rest of us.

  4. “…and a policy that he should be especially familiar with, the National Energy Policy, lost thousands of jobs across the country.”
    Owned !!!

    This lady maybe small but packs quite a punch.  Lefties are not going to be happy with her fielding questions in parliament…

    • Is that anything like the National Energy Strategy Mr. Harper is planning now?

      • Pretty sure it is nothing like it. Certainly he won’t be restricting oil exports, capping oil prices and causing them to cap well heads. 

  5. Rona Ambrose should take her aside…

    • why?

      • She was the darling when she was on Environment, she faithfully delivered Harper’s policy and when it turned sour on him, she was turfed.  Being  out front can be dangerous.

        •  Turfed? No, she was shuffled to hold 3 portfolio’s
          Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs (Dion’s first appointment by Chretien) Pres of the Privy Council and Minister of Western Economic Diversification.

          I remember the  Sierra Club and Greenpeace Canada circulated an article called ‘Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow’, around COP 12 (2006) and Canadian progressives called Ambrose’s policy the Clean Hair Act.

          Minister Ambrose called for a new (nonKyoto) international agreement that included all major emitters, exactly what is coming out of Durban.

          PM Harper’s answer to the critics- he gave John Baird the portfolio, John also has great hair and a terrific bark.

          http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2007/01/04/cabinet-shuffle.html

          • Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs under Harper = Minister of Nothing.

          • You are right. The Enviroment Minister in Canada does not pretend that we are going to destroy the economy of Canada while other major emitters take advantage of us. Its not going to happen. It takes you guys a long time to get the point. Harper has been clear since 06 that Kyoto is dead and unless the major emitters agree to binding committments then it is a non starter in Canada. We will do sector by sector regulations in an incremental way.
            That’s the job ot the Canadian Environment Minister.

          • Haven’t heard a thing about her for quite some time.  And that’s a shame, because I’ve always quite liked her.

          • The media ate her for lunch. She’s probably glad for the lower profile. 

    • Ambrose was the sacrificial lamb to be sure. She was handed an impossible task. Environment Canada had, for the previous 4 years, been almost entirely focused on implementing Canada’s non-response to Kyoto. Suddenly in 2006 the government changes, and we aren’t committed to Kyoto anymore. Harper brings in a new Clean Air Act targeting smog (nitrous and sulpher oxides as opposed to CO2), and she’s tasked with selling it not only to a sceptical public and media, but to a department full of climate zealots who’ve just been told to abandoned 4 years of work. Nobody would have survived that. 

  6. Calgary MP Ms Rempel to young Trudeau
    ‘…a policy that he should be especially familiar with, the National Energy Policy, lost thousands of jobs across the country…’
     
    If Libs think we Western Canadians pass down the NEP/PET stories to our children, and grandchildren (and new Albertans),
    you would be correct.
    You say tarsands, we say NEP.

     

    • Yes, you make up myths and you pass them on.

      Alberta is a veritable fantasyland of myths.

      • And superstitious too!  We all tuck garlic into the toe of our cowboy boots incase a Liberal is in our presence and we don’t know it.

        • Nonsense, it was considered a demotion. He has to keep her in cabinet, she’s one of his flags that makes him look progressive.  Of course to be truly progressive he would give the women cabinet ministers some actual authority to run their ministries.  But you can’t call him sexist on this, he doesn’t let the men run theirs either. Kent will no doubt suiffer the same fate.  Harper burns his own messengers. 

          • That comment was to do with Rona.  Disqus is being difficult.

        • I know….it’s why people give you soap and cologne for Xmas.

    • When you move to B.C., as so many of you do, try to leave the bitterness behind, we’re not interested in listening to your whining.

      • When all the rich Albertans move to BC, what is there left to whine about?

    • Are you still passing down the Let Those Eastern Bastards Freeze in the Dark story to your children too?

      • We also remember when Chretien said Albertans are just different.

         We also remember when they called the West Holocast Deniers. We also remember in an effort to attack Harper Chretien spread the falsehood that Harper and Klein wanted to destroy the single payer healthcare system. There have been so many insults to the West as Chretien and Liberals used it to be a straw man over the years.

        No wonder we can’t stand Liberals in this part of the country.

        Yes we do remind our children that it was the Liberals who tried to destroy Alberta with the NEP and our way of life.

        Just like Quebec remembers that the Liberals set up a scheme to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money.

        We are not bitter. We just get even at the ballot box.

        • So… who are we going to vote for once Harper gets in his National Energy Strategy?

          The man’s gone Ottawa on you, hollinm.

          • There will be an environmental strategy at some point. However, it won’t be for a long time. There is too much self interest around the world to have all the countries agree to a comprehensive, binding agreement to control GHGs.

            In the meantime Harper will continue to be pragmatic and realistic to incrementally control GHGs without putting industries out of business or significantly increasing the costs to Canadians. Its all about moderation Thwim instead of the knee jerk reactions of the opposition parties and the environmentalists.

          • That’s okay Thwim, Harper lives in Calgary.  He is one of US.

      • Ralph Klein said that when he was the mayor of Calgary.  It was printed on bumper stickers after the NEP.

        • Oh, and it really was only directed at Ottawa….not the maritimes…in Alberta, we think of Ottawa as being “eastern” rather than central Canada.

    • How about the older Manning’s rejection of French-speaking catholics for leaders in  Canada?  Are you still passing that down to your children and grandchildren too?  Indeed, when has Alberta supported a French-speaking catholic politician from Eastern Canada?

      • I understand Maxime Bernier is quite popular in Calgary. Most folks in the West like their politicans straightforward and principled.
        I suspect their lack of support for the likes of Trudeau and Chretien had nothing to do with religion or language.

        But you know that, however it doesn/t fit well in your martyr imagination.

      • When has ever mattered to any leader WHO Alberta supported?

      • He never made an issue of French speaking or of Catholics. He campaigned against a leader from Quebec representing Canada’s interests in the event of Quebec separation. Where did you get this from that he was anti-Catholic or anti-French? 

        • It’s not an idea but a fact about Manning père, Ernest, former socred premier of Alberta, who declared that his province would never accept a francophone Catholic as party leader. That was in 1960, during the Socred leadership campaign when Réal Caouette seemed to be leading the race, and I was wondering if it was something Albertans still passed on to their children. I don’t believe that Ernest Manning was anti-French but I would imagine, considering the length of his stay as premier, that he knew well the people he governed.

          And it’s not an idea but it’s a fact that since Confederation a conservative party has never been led by a catholic French-Canadian, except for Jean Charest who led the progressive conservatives by default after he found himself one of two MPs in the HoC for that party:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Canadian_conservative_leaders

          You may consider this a coincidence. I don’t. Friction between French and English speaking Canadians is well document, on both sides of the language fence. I would not bet a loonie that Maxime Bernier has a chance to become the next leader of the Conservative Party, no matter how much he is liked in AB.

          2011/12/10 Disqus

    • That’s how fairy tales are generally passed down.

      • These cautionary tales are unfortunately reality.

    • Personally I think it was a cheap shot. Justin shouldn’t have to wear his dad’s mistakes. He’ll make enough of his own. If, on the other hand, he does become Liberal leader some day, and starts waxing poetic about his father’s legacy to drum up sentimental support (just as Paul Martin Jr. was fond of doing), then the numerous follies of Pierre become fair game. Michel Rempel should hold her fire. She might need it some day. 

  7. Geez Aaron, I can’t stop laughing – such descriptive writing!!
     
    Yep, those lefties better not mess with the Alberta women – land of The Famous Five!

    • Yup, nobody else had suffragettes.

      Not a one.

      • If they ever let you in Alberta, check out the monument at Olympic Plaza, downtown Calgary – paid for by donations.  Albertans have a habit of rolling up their sleeves and doing something instead of standing around complaining.
         
        “Unfortunately, very little of our history is taught in our schools and until now only law students have learned about The Famous 5 and the Person’s Case. Yet, MacLean’s Magazine chose to place The Famous 5 women and the Person’s Case among the twenty-five events that shaped our country in the past century.”

        • I lived in Alberta for some years. Married and had a child there.

          The Famous Five are well known. Three were from Ontario, one from Quebec and one from England.

          They were, however, not the only Suffragettes in Canada.

          It has been my experience that Albertans never do anything BUT complain.

    • I am suprised he didn’t give her measurements at the rate he was going….

  8. The only person who is a laughing stock is Ms. Leslie. The fact is there is no change in Canada’s position. It is all or nothing. All of the major emitters or Canada will not participate in any new agreement. Pretty clear. Whether its 015 or 020 matters not. The NDP is not helping themsleves. Consensus has moved on. Kyoto is dead and its a good thing. Now what will the NDP bitch about. The CWB gone, the gun registry gun, the crime bill gone. Oh I know the aboriginal file. More outrage by Angus but what does he propose to fix the systemic issues. His former leader said he wanted to propose versus oppose. Sending in the army? Give me a break.

    • Sorry…that’s changed. Brace yourself.

      • Do tell all knowing and all seeing Emily.

        • Somehow you’ve gotten the impression, probably from our media, that Canada is a big wheel at international conferences, and that everything revolves around what we say and do.

          If you read world news though, you’ll discover that Canada doesn’t even get a mention.  We are only one country out of 200 others, and as long as we act as shills for the oil companies we’ll be ignored.

          There are 7 billion people in the world ya know, so we’re easily ignorable. The world moves on and we’re left behind.

          • “If you read world news though, you’ll discover that Canada doesn’t even get a mention.  We are only one country out of 200 others, and as long as we act as shills for the oil companies we’ll be ignored.”

            You’re confusing the international communities’ view of Canada with thinking persons’ view of you, although your comment about being ignored because we have oil does have an element of truth, with one qualifier – any country needing it is unlikely to be among the ignorant.

          • At the moment you can’t give your oil away.  LOL

          • So THAT’s why oil’s @ $0.50/barrel!  You are peerless in your ability to inform complicated political/social/economic affairs in 144 characters or less.

          • Emily can we quote you on that 50 cent price for a barrel of crude?  If you check the markets, oil closed a over $99.00 a barrel today but don’t let reality stop you now…you never have in the past.

          • Healthcare, she never said 50 cents, she said “you can’t give it away.” Apparently she believes it isn’t even worth 50 cents. She’s smart you know. I would not bet against her. :)

          • I have never thought Canada had much clout on the world stage. We are a small player. However, it’s that silly woman in the NDP and of course the environmentalists that suggest somehow we are destroying the Durban conference. As you rightly point out nobody gives a damn what we think. If the other 200+ countries want to do an agreement they can do it regardless of what Canada says or does.

            Tell your buddies in the media and the opposition to get over themselves. Stop with the hysterics.

          • Canada used to have clout…in fact we were leaders.

            Not any more.  We’ve given up that role.

            So…we get kicked to the curb.

          • You must be smoking something if you think we had any clout at any time. Soft power is simply that you blow neither hot nor cold.

          • Ahh but we did. Noted for it in fact.

            I know you don’t think someone has power unless they’re bristling with weapons,  but soft power is much more effective. It doesn’t kill anyone, it doesn’t make enemies, and it lasts.

            You really have to stop with this paleo-nostalgia….it’s not that era anymore.

          • Aaah, the “We used to walk the Earth as Giants” myth.

            Unbelievably delusional.  Bordering on hallucinogenic.

    • Harper needs his base bitching about something what is he going to do?

      • On the contrary. We want to see a government moving the country forward.

        We had 13 years of majority Liberal governments who need absolutely nothing to resolve some of the issues that faces the country. Well now we are seeing changes made. We may not agree with all of them but Harper certainly has the “progressives” on here, in the media and the opposition crying foul. However, this is what a majority government should look like. They do shit.

        It is the Canadian people who will decide in four years whether they agree with the agenda that the government has enacted. Not the media nor the opposition parties.

    • Wrt the aboriginal file, what are you suggestions?

      • Hey I’m not the one bitching. Its the mouthy Charlie Angus. He gets paid a lot of money to offer solutions. Its easy to criticize but a lot harder to offer concrete workable solutions.

        • But is it?

          Is it Charlie Angus’ job to offer solutions? In our system the Oppositions job is to oppose, no? And for that, yes, we do pay Opposition MPs to do that.

          Personally, I’d actually be in favour of moving our system of government to be quite a bit more collaborative, but for now we have this system.

          That aside, what are some of the main hurdles that you see wrt solving these issues?

  9. Aaron pronounces on the phony theatre of the HoC while ignoring the substance.  So Ms. Rempel is able to turn a phrase.  Meanwhile, her government does their best to sabotage international agreements.

    Nice journalism.

    • Try reading it again,

    • But she has dimples!

    • Perhaps that is the point of Mr Wherry’s article Homer.
      Phony theatre, no substance, short and smiley with dimples…..

    • No, Emily says we have no clout on the international stage at all, so we’re not capable of sabotaging international agreements. Emily is never wrong. 

      • Clout – is that what Kent is wielding over on Durbin?  Whatever it is, it’s not going well.  Another Canadian Environment Minister hits the dust. 

        • Only in the minds of the progressives and those the want Canada to bow down to the holy grail of so called alternative green energy. There is no such thing and to destroy our economy while China and India go merrily along their way continuing to spew COs is absolutely crazy.

          Yes we are generating negative comments like we have at every conference and that will be the case until the major emitters see the issue as serious enough to take real action. Otherwise its just a farce being played out because none of them want to hurt their people or economies.

          Sad that the enviro nuts don’t get the point because in the end it is all about politics. Its not about “saving the world”.

  10. It must have been in the delivery because when you read her argument it seems a bit circular.

    Her first point is that we’re only 33 million of 7 billion people (0.47% of the planet) and account for 2% of GhGs.The suggestion is that at 2% we’re almost insignificant in the global scheme of things.  But if that were true Canada should be busy promoting the heck out of international treaties if it wants to avoid the worst effects of climate change. Which in turn suggests we don’t want that.

    The one  phrase that leaped out was that Canada “is a world leader in ‘saying’ we need domestic action at home.”

    I suppose no one can doubt that Canada is a world leader at saying stuff.  But it’s not a substitute for say… actually “doing” stuff.

    • I was thinking more…pretzel shaped.

  11. ”Mr. Speaker, imagine a place where 75 per cent of our electricity is
    generated by sources that do not emit greenhouse gases…….,” she mused one day. “Wait a second; that is Canada.”

    That is an interesting stat.  Just a third more to go and Canada’s electricity generation sector will be completely GHG free – that seems fairly painless.  How does that jive with the “It can’t be done without reverting to the Stone Age” theory?

    • Shush…you’re spoiling her moment in the sun…the other thing is to keep the goon squad happy and DONATING.

      It’s complicated…i think it has something to do with Darwin being out to lunch or something.

      • …the other thing is to keep the goon squad happy and DONATING

        C’mon kcm2, you’re better than that sort of slagging…

        • Do you think so? I’ve never really pretended to be non partisan.It may be over the top but i honestly have nothing but contempt for the tactics of the present day CPC.; i do however respect genuine conservatives; and i do believe there is most often more then one way to skin a cat or fix a political problem.Real conservatives don’t bother me a bit – i just don’t much agree with them. 

          • Problem with you and  the rest of the ”progessive” crowd you have had your own way for many years. Now there is an opponent who can play just as tough as you guys and you don’t like it one little bit. So having no control you simply lash out.

            One of the problems is that people like you take the rhetoric over the top with this comment as case in point. Most Canadians are not that caught up with politics and they simply reject that kind of approach.

            They discount it and that is why the government is enjoying polling numbers the way they are.

            Despite what you say I do not believe you like Conservatives. Everything they stand for is anathema to what you believe. So don’t try to b.s. us.

          • Wrong as usual. Bad as Chretien was from time to time he was an amateur compared to this crew.
            As far asyou go i can’t much be bothered anymore; you can barely write two posts without contradicting yourself or getting your facts wrong – eg., i said i could respect a real con, not like.[ Flanagan i respect not like. See the diff?]
            I also said i couldn’t agree with most of em. Reading skills help bud. 

          • I can/t understand what you are trying to say.
            A little writing skills please.

          • That last comment was meant for kcm2.

          • Hmmm…OK, I don’t want to belabour this too much, but…

            You could have made your point without using the goon squad term. Seems to me that by adding that phrase you unnecessarily offend some genuine conservatives, whom you do respect – you could have maintained your partisanship without it.

            Personally I’ve found our discussions to be very respectful, and I was a little taken aback by that phrasing, that’s all.

            Thanks.

          • Sorry. Didn’t intend to offend you. :)

          • I’m not offended as much as disappointed…that’s all.

          • PhilCP

            Point taken. I really shouldn’t have attached  that quip to  your comment when it was intended for CPCer’s in general. Sorry to disappoint you but i’m afraid i do sometimes have an abrasive scrappy side. But you’re perfectly correct the point could have been made without unecessary slagging. A little discipline wouldn’t go amiss sometimes.

  12. Meet Michelle Rempel, the parliamentary secretary to the Minister of the Environment. She is short and smiley and perfectly patronizing.

    [Kent] was one of several grumpy old men lined up at the far end of the
    room, [Rempel] was quick and snappy and a bright face that stood each day in
    obvious contrast.

    Few things enrage liberals more than the existence of an intelligent young, female conservative. If she were also a visible minority, Wherry would probably have suffered a brain aneurism by now.

    • I agree…when are they going to get one…

  13. did she say that “the NDP wants to legalize marijuana” like dippy dianne findley say in her first answer on Wed????? 

    • If that’s true, that’s actually one policy of the NDP’s I can support.

  14. nice hissy fit Wherry… jealous? “Liberals”, NDPQ types make such easy targets with their dismal record of talking big but delivering nothing… Although Dion did name his dog Kyoto, so i guess the “Liberals” did do something on this file.  

  15. Mr. Wherry, I’m curious…  What did the Prime Minister do when the other caucus members stood and applauded Ms Remple?

    On another point… the Mennonites are beginning to make a mark in the Canadian parliament… Toews, Heoppner, Fast, Remple, Hiebert… perhaps others.  These are the descendents of hard-working pioneers (as many of us are).

  16. This article just proves that old adage:…. Hell hath no fury, like a Harper-hating, anti-Conservative “journalist” scorned.

    • A smug, partisan Liberal hack masquerading as a journalist.

  17. And International Co-operation?  Or leave Bev with that and just expand the Cabinet?

  18. She is as empty-headed, this new little shiny Tea Party lady, as her Party is of Vision, probably a word that any Republican-Conservative in our Canadian Parliament would have trouble spelling!
    Michelle, my belle, we have sipped a bit of your toxic tea, but we sure aint’ buyin’ it!  Enjoy your familiar toxic brew….it trickles from the Very Top and Harpo mighty likes the taste…

  19. Gosh, this young promising star of the Tea Parfty sippers sure knows how to dish out the Party’s famous toxic brew!  Perhaps (Canada’s) Queen of Foreign Affairs will hire her as as a political talking points expert, eh?!    

  20. a few paragraphs from yet another article on Ms Remple, “She’s smart as a whip.” :

    She is among a new breed of Tory women.
     Like Lisa Raitt, the uber-confident Labour Minister, with whom she pals around, and Candice Hoeppner, the Manitoba Tory MP who killed the long-gun registry, Ms. Rempel stands out.

    Even then – and despite the war of words and accusations – Ms. Leslie respects Ms. Rempel. In fact, they go for drinks together “to decompress.”
    “It’s nice to have a strong adversary on the file,” the NDP MP says. “She’s smart as a whip.”

    She’s a classically trained pianist, who helped pay her way through university by playing.

     
    “Stop right there,” Ms. Ambrose said. “We have so many talented women as staff and activists in the party. What we need is to get them on the benches. We’re only going to get that if you decide to run. So run.”

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/confident-rookie-mp-one-of-a-new-breed-of-tory-women/article2266600/

  21. You know Aaron Wheery, this is pretty sexist.  Next time, make sure you comment on the “size” and smile or lack of with regard to all the people in the house…..not just the short, smiley woman from the conservative party.

  22. Splendid.  Either the Conservatives are sexist troglodytes who never put women in high-profile posts, or the women who somehow end up there are “patronizing”, only listen “in search of a turn of phrase she can turn back on her opponent”, and are known to have “sneered cheerfully” and “snapped” while being “sarcastic” and “caustic” (and we really can’t abide that, now, can we?)  Meanwhile, she “had looked serious…but back in her seat she beamed”.  Id est, what unpleasant, nagging, insincere airheads these Conservative women are!

    And this passes for journalism at Macleans?  Even as crude entertainment, this is pretty low and would not be considered acceptable by anyone if directed at a woman from any other party.   You know, the ones who are “quick and snappy” with “bright face[s]“.

    I used to genuinely enjoy Wherry’s posts from time to time, especially when he really pounced on moments of CPC doublethink and incompetence. I believe the recent majority win has affected him poorly – the light-hearted bias has been replaced by something a lot uglier.

    • Well said……The progressives are so full of hate these days. Its sad.

    • Well we can’t really blame Aaron for just following the established journalism playbook when it comes to attractive Conservatives, can we?

      As far as journalists are concerned, both north and south of the border, there is only one acceptable way to treat attractive Conservative women; the same way they treated Palin, Bachmann, Stronach (until she “saw the light” and crossed the floor, at which point the attacks on her ceased) Ambrose, Guergis, etc.

      And that’s to throw away the decorum rule book. Question their intelligence. Ridicule them. Write sexist drivel about them, like this post. Target their families. In short, make public life as unpleasant for them as possible. Destroy them as quickly and utterly as you can. All the while criticizing the Conservatives for being an “old boys” party that systematically keeps women down.

      I hope Michelle Rempel has an especially thick skin. Thick skins are required in politics of course, but as Aaron has just proved, if her profile begins to grow, she’s going to need it far more than the rest of her colleagues do. Otherwise, I’d recommend a floor crossing to the Liberals or NDP, where because of her looks she’d immediately be branded a “rising star”.

      • Well put.

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