This week's moving parts -

This week’s moving parts

Terrorism and parliamentary democracy are up for debate


The House will take up debate of S-7, the combatting terrorism act, at noon today. This will conceivably compel Justin Trudeau to explain himself again. It will also put the New Democrats in the position of having to explain, at this sensitive moment, why they oppose this legislation.

Moving this legislation to today and Tuesday bumped the Liberal motion on statements by members to Wednesday. That means the motion won’t be debated until after the Conservative caucus meets on Wednesday morning. But there is also the question of when the Speaker will rule on Mark Warawa’s question of privilege. Will the Speaker rule before the Liberal motion is debated and voted on? And, if so, what effect will that ruling have on the debate and the vote?

John Ivison expects a ruling today.


This week’s moving parts

  1. Harper is such a weasel, using the tragedy in Boston to score political points.

    But clearly Trudeau is in the right. After one condemns the act of violence and its perpetrators, it’s smarter to examine its root causes to try and prevent it from happening again. The caveman approach of reacting with hateful emotions accomplishes little. That’s why the American wars on drugs, crime and terror have been colossal failures.

    The US homicide rate is many times its liberal counterparts’: 5X Sweden’s, 6X Germany’s, 8X Norway’s. The brainless approach actually enables criminals (instead of forcing them to change their behavior) and it produces many more victims of crime. Harper is simply wrong on crime.

    • Oh, you’re just grumpy that he pointed out the stupidity in Junior’s reaction to the event. What “root causes” do you think caused these 2 kids to feel they had the right to attack innocent people? What do you propose be done to ensure this doesn’t happen again?

      The problem with people like you and Junior is that you think terrorists are rational, logical people. They’re not. They’re demented psychopaths.

      • And you, Ricky, have the benefit of engaging in ex post facto analysis, because you know something Trudeau couldn’t have known when he was asked to extemporize a mere two hours after the event, i.e., that it was “2 kids” who perpetrated the deed.

        And now, everybody is speculating on the “root causes” of their act.

        And how do you manage to construe what JT said as a depiction of terrorists as “rational, logical people”? He said nothing of the kind.

        • Junior’s clear insinuation was that if we could just understand these poor folks, and give them what they want, then they wouldn’t become terrorists. As in just give in to terrorism, and they’ll leave us alone. That’s never worked throughout history, and it won’t work in the future.

          Junior couldn’t even get himself to call it a terrorist attack at the time of the interview.

          And no, everybody is not looking at the “root causes”, they’re looking at motive. There’s a huge difference.

          • He didn’t say anything at all that suggested terrorists should be placated. That’s your own inference from his comments.

            And the probable reason he didn’t call it a terrorist act is that, at that moment, it wasn’t clear that it was (at least in the conventional sense in which the term “terrorist” is used to describe such acts). It could plausibly have been an act of domestic violence. Estranged partners have been known to target aircraft and it’s equally conceivable one would plant bomb(s) in a crowd that included one’s intended target. Or it could have been the act of someone who planted bombs for the same idiosyncratically deranged “reason” that some arsonists start fires.

            The point is, at the moment when Trudeau was asked to comment, no one knew, including him, that this was the act of someone with “terrorist” intentions.

            I suspect if Trudeau had used the word “terrorist” and later turned out be wrong, you’d be among those pointing fingers at him derisively and saying, “ha, ha, Junior’s shooting his mouth off before he even has the facts”.

            And your distinction between “root causes” and motivation is lame hair-splitting over semantics.

          • LOL “domestic violence”? Since when does a pissed off husband set two bombs in a public place filled with innocent people?! I suppose it “could” have been, but it also “could” have been Martians, or it “could” have been Santa Claus attempting to find a new gift-delivery mechanism. Of course you’d have to be an idiot to take either of those “options” seriously.

            Listen, it’s not rocket science: if somebody place 2 bombs in a public place with the intent to injure innocent people, that’s terrorism. It doesn’t matter what their motivation was, what their skin color was, religion, sexual orientation, political beliefs: it’s terrorism.

            After 9/11, were you sitting there going “whoa people, lets not jump to conclusions. It could have just been an air traffic controller having a bad day”?

            Until your people learn to understand the difference between criminal acts and acts of terrorism, nobody will take the NDP seriously enough to ever form a government.

          • OK, by your definition of “terrorism”, deliberately driving one’s vehicle into a crowd on a sidewalk is terrorism, although I don’t recall that word being applied when such an event occurred.

            My point is that, contrary to your infallible smart-assed hindsight, the motivation behind the act wasn’t self-evident and Trudeau was wisely refraining from making such inferences.

            My, my, he certainly manages to p!ss you and your ilk off. Got you worried, I suspect.

          • He wasn’t avoiding making inferences, he was avoiding condemning the act.

            But hey, what do I care. I’m happy to continue letting him keep putting his foot in his mouth. All the MSM in the world couldn’t explain away his ignorance to the Canadian public.

          • “He wasn’t avoiding making inferences, he was avoiding condemning the act.”

            I would suggest neither of us has insight into Trudeau’s intent when he answered Mansbridge’s question. Therefore, I choose to reserve judgment. I’m not as infallible on such matters as you apparently think you are.

          • I’ve seen people not understand things. I’ve almost never seen people rush to absolutely condemn understanding things.

            Jeez the CPC and it’s internet fringe have no ability to feel shame.

          • Terrorism isn’t a new phenomenon. It’s been around for centuries, and it’s plenty well understood. If Junior think’s he can add to the wealth of knowledge about what motivates and inspires terrorism, I’d encourage him to share it with us. But I rest well at night knowing that people brighter than him have contemplated the subject and understand it well.

          • I don’t think he even inferred it, so much as completely made it up.

          • Aside from all the comments below to this asinine post, I should remind you that we had this conversation on another thread last week.

            Junior is talking prevention. That doesn’t mean “giving them what they want”; it means trying to figure out how to prevent a recurrence. Better understanding of how the enemy’s mind works makes it easier to put preventative measures in place. Much better than burying the dead and cleaning up rubble.

          • Where, exactly, is he talking about “prevention”?

            First thing you offer support and sympathy and condolences, and can we send down EMTs, as we contributed after 9/ll. I mean, is there any material, immediate support we can offer. And then at the same time, over the coming days, we have to look at the root causes.

            Now, we don’t know now whether it was terrorism or a single crazy, or a domestic issue or a foreign issue. But there is no question that this happened because there is someone who feels completely excluded, completely at war with innocents, at war with a society. And our approach has to be, okay, where do those tensions come from?

            Yes, we have to make sure that we’re promoting security and we’re keeping our borders safe, and monitoring the kinds of violent subgroups that happen around. But we also have to monitor and encourage people to not point fingers at each other and lay blame for personal ills or societal ills on a specific group, whether it be the West or the government, or Bostonians, or whatever it is.

            Because it’s that idea of dividing humans against ourselves, pointing out that they’re not like us, and in order to achieve political goals we can kill innocents here—that’s something that no society in the world that is healthy, regardless of ideology, will accept.

            Then, after Masbridge asks him if he’d called CSIS, RCMP, etc:

            Of course, I’d be worried about what specific targets there are. But there will always be more targets, more shopping centres, more public events, more gatherings than we can evacuate or we can deal with.

            Yes, there is a need for security and response and being proactive and making sure that we have information. But we also need to make sure that as we go forward that we don’t emphasize a culture of fear and mistrust, because that ends up marginalizing even further people who are already feeling like they are enemies of society rather than people who have hope for the future and faith that we an work together and succeed.

            In fact, it even seems that he’s conceded to the terrorism by saying “there will always be more targets”, but the key to prevention, in his eyes, are making sure that would-be terrorists feel included in our society.

            My Canada doesn’t include terrorists.

          • Don’t be such a rick! Those items you bolded speak to the need to avoid blaming entire groups, and acknowledging the impossibility of guarding everything. Not surrender. Your partisanship colours everything you read.

          • No, he’s not saying surrender. He’s basically saying that this type of thing is an acceptable loss, and the best way forward is to find out what we can do to appease these types of fanatics.

            It doesn’t take partisanship to parse what these words means. Peter Mansbridge was more interested in what kind of law enforcement details he would ask for. That says a lot.

      • You application of “demented psychopaths” is simple name-calling, not a professional diagnosis. Behavioral scientists can actually find out what motivates people to commit heinous crimes and from there develop solutions. Criminologists have developed strategies that curb the antisocial behavior of criminals and turn them into law-abiding citizens. Ignoramuses call this “hug a thug.” But it gets real-world results and saves a lot of people from becoming victims of crime. (Not to mention saving taxpayers a lot of money.)

        • Ron, I work in psychiatry. I am fascinated to know more about these treatments for “curbing antisocial behavior and turning criminals who display anti-social behavior into law abiding citizens”. Do you have some source material on it?

  2. I would like to see Trudeau strike at the heart of the matter by saying something like “We always need to be exploring the root causes of terrorism, yesterday, today, tommorow. The victims of the horrible actions we see on the news know this better than anyone.

  3. I don’t understand all the hype around Trudeau’s words. Of course we need to look at why terrorism happens – especially when most politician’s explanations – parroted dutifully by the mainstream media, is that they ‘hate our freedom’, ‘hate our sinful lifestyles’ or whatever.

    No nation is the focus of a terrorist act by random chance. No event is randomly chosen. There are reasons – however ridiculous – for these things. And you can pass all the legislation you want, but until you get to the real reason people become radicalized, it won’t be beaten.