128

Dear citizen


 

Cheryl Gallant writes to her constituents.

While the past year has been productive for our Conservative government, the challenge of governing in a minority Parliament, where a significant block of seats are held by separatists dedicated to the destruction of Canada, and the worst global economic recession since the Second World War, Prime Minister Stephen Harper requested, and received permission, to adjourn, or “prorogue” Parliament a few additional weeks.

This was done to allow us to make plans to respond to the great challenges all Canadians face, including a rising national debt and how Canadians should be asked to reduce it.


 

Dear citizen

  1. Well that's nice, an elected member of parliament stoking anti-french sentiment AND deliberately conflating adjournment with prorogation.

    And one thing's been bothering me, even if we are to take the Conservatives at face value – why couldn't they be completing their "consultations with Canadians" between January 1st and January 23rd? Are we to believe that they plan on hitting the ground running on January 23rd and will be consulting at a feverish pace until the start of the Olympics? How stupid do they think we are?

    • "stoking anti-french sentiment"

      Someone pointing out BQ is dedicated to destroying Canada as we know it is "stoking anti-french sentiment"? I would argue that it is statement of obvious.

      Richard_S_A Are you ever bothered by the anti-rest of Canada sentiment that is stoked when Quebecers vote for separatist parties?

      • Well I was under the impression that most objective observers liken the current iteration of the BQ as a party more concerned with regional representation and not separatism. That this is the reason for it's continued support in Quebec and not because the great majority of Quebecois are frothing separatistes.

        I understand that it's politically profitable to scratch the long festering scab of anti-french sentiment in this country (and yes, I speak as a person of French Canadian descent), but that doesn't make it right.

        • "I understand that it's politically profitable to scratch the long festering scab of anti-french sentiment in this country (and yes, I speak as a person of French Canadian descent), but that doesn't make it right. "

          Your singular perception of the Bloc Quebecois doesn't make you right either. Ms. Gallant's missive to her constituents was odious enough that embellishment on your part hardly seems to be necessary. It's funny that you accuse her of "deliberatley conflating" two separate ideas while doing that precise same thing yourself.

        • You underestimate the single-mindedness of Quebec separatists Richard. Not a smart thing to do.

      • It seems to me the Bloc has adapted to their position as 'representatives of Quebecers' and dropped most of the pretense of separatism, except for the occasional swagger. In fact, they've been easy to accomodate Ms Gallant's team's wishes on a number of chances that meet both their goals.
        Pulling out the red herring 'separatists' card when trying to divert attention from your own lack of clarity, honesty and interest in following the will of the people (who elected a parliament with a majority of non-Cons, after all) is tried and true for you types. Just admit it, prorogation gives Harper a holiday from the vagaries of accountability and a lot of face-time — specifically no question and answer time — to feed that narcissistic hole of his.

      • Why are you so bothered by who other people vote for jolyon? You cant control who they vote for so your speculation is just more a sign that you dont like other's making decisions you wouldn't

        So much for democracy in your world.

  2. "This was done to allow us to make plans to respond to the great challenges all Canadians face, including a rising national debt and how Canadians should be asked to reduce it"

    It's such a relief to know that members of parliament will be attending the games on their dime…right, that's what she meant,right?

    • That story should start "once upon a time" and end with " and they all lived happily ever after" like all fairy tales.

  3. She also is neglecting to mention how proroguing kills much of the government’s important legislation, undoing many weeks of work by Parliament and its committees, all of which will have to be done again in the spring. Given that they are not starting until March, much of it won’t be passed before the summer.

    • If there's any truth to the following rumor, I'd like to add:

      Ooh! Ooh! and it stalls budget consultations, too! So now the Tories get to write whatever they want, however they want, because they're not *supposed* to convene those Town Halls while Parliament's prorogued!

  4. The more demagogic the Conservative MP, the worse the explanation becomes about the need to prorogue Parliament.

    • It's obviously a sign that "it frees up our time so we can attend the Olympics" and "democracy is bad for the stock market" have fallen short of their intended targets. Desperate times call for 'old hat' remedies. Try the wax paper-with-mayonnaise on your head, Cheryl, and those goiters will be gone lickety-split!

  5. How Canadians should be asked to reduce it???

    Ok, the old saying is Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way.

    Get out of the Way. Please.

    There was a time when Conservatives knew how to balance a budget.

    • When was that? In ontario Mcginty inherited a deficit and in Ottawa Chretien inherited one as well, both from previous Conservative governments! It should be obvious to all but the most willfully blind (as good a definition of CPC members as you will find anywhere) that "conservative managerial competance" is one of the great myths of our time.

      • Does your memory extend back only ten years, or do you care to follow the string of deficits to their origin?

        • So please – name a Conservative government that's managed to balance a budget (excepting, of course, during an oil boom).

          • Not sure why oil revenues are off limits. I may be wrong, but didn't Ontario run a budget surplus in 2002 before Mike Harris stepped?

      • you make a good point.

    • When the hell was that?

  6. To those of you responding to Cheryl Gallant: don't.

    Think Sarah Palin. Then take away her wit, intelligence, and hotness, and you'll end up with Cheryl Gallant.

    Gallant did not write this note. Someone at PMO wrote it for her. Makes you wonder what kind of blowback they're receiving from their constituents, doesn't it?

    • Maybe she's Canada's Ann Coulther. I can't believe our last names share the same lineage.

  7. My favourite part was the bit where she accuses the opposition parties of accusing the troops on the ground of war crimes, and ends it with "our troops are not a partisan punching bag."

    • "undemocratic attitude and actions of this government, and I think proroguing adds to the total character picture of Mr. Harper, and the fact that they may have been committing war crimes, handing over detainees knowing that they were very likely to be tortured, that is a war crime. And the fact that they're covering it up, I think many Canadians do care about those things as well as caring about economic issues." John McCallum, CBC Jan 12 '10

      "Ignatieff said the documents would shed light on such crucial matters as whether Canada has respected international law and human rights, "the conduct of our troops in the field" and the conduct of the government which appears to have ignored warnings about torture." Canadian Press, Jan 9 '10

      "Earlier this month, Ujjal Dosanjh, the Liberal defence critic, described a lone diplomat's allegations as "the fact that this government ignored the warnings of torture, sent prisoners to Afghan jails at the risk of torture, which is a war crime, which is an absolute war crime." Toronto Star, Jan 4 '10

      "Canadian diplomats stationed in Kabul warned the former Liberal government in 2003, 2004 and 2005 that torture was commonplace in Afghan prisons. In spite of these warnings, the Martin government signed an agreement with the Karzai government in December 2005 to hand over all Canadian-captured prisoners to Afghan authorities, Foreign Affairs documents obtained by La Presse reveal." La Presse,, April '07

      Libs are using our troops as a punching bag – Colvin never claimed Canadians committed war crimes but there is Warren K comparing what Canadians did to Abu Ghraib and Ignatieff, Dosanjh and McCallum claiming cover ups and something to hide.

      But Libs support our troops!

      • Absolutely. THE GOVERNMENT may have a committed a war crime.

        Reading comp. not yer strong suit, is it?

        • "THE GOVERNMENT may have a committed a war crime."

          Which government? The one that agreed to hand over prisoners to known torturers (PM Martin) or the one that stopped the transfers (PM Harper).

      • When in doubt accuse your opponent of not supporting our troops… and so far it does not appear to be catching on with anyone other than partisan Conservative supporters sticking to their subscribed talking points. But I am sure that is just the media's fault… or maybe the country's 'elites' haven't starting paying attention yet.

    • I`m surprised to see that Jenn seemed to enjoy the part of the fairly typical letter of an MP to constituents where " she accuses the opposition parties of accusing the troops on the ground of war crimes ". Gallant may be a bit partisan sometimes and by citing " favourite parts " Jenn appears to be a recent CPC convert, but I think she could have chosen a more conciliatory " favourite part " or even a more even-handed CPC member to follow.

  8. To quote the Chief Government Whip from Yes Minister: "In politics you have to learn to say things with tact and finesse, you berk!"

  9. You can tell she wrote that herself. Farther down, Ms Gallant puts scare quotes around the word "carbon."

    • Cool, Anon is making both sides of the argument!

      • There are two Ano— You know what? I give up. :)

        • There are *more* than two anons .. darn it :-) I'm the one who compared Palin & Gallant above. I think I've to get a new handle, although why bother?

      • Don't worry about it. Whether she wrote herself or someone else did, it makes no difference when it comes to the Borg…I mean the Conservatives.

        I just know that Cheryl is particularly sub-literate.

  10. Conservatives speaking to fiscal conservatism is like Nich giving medical advice; not very credible.

  11. She sounds like one of these people who stand on a street corner with a sign warning us that the end is imminent.

    • But what if the end is nigh?

      • then best not to spend the little remaining time picketing on a street corner…or acting like that is where you belong.

  12. Honesty, and logic, would then imply that the Conservatives are therefore "the representatives of Canada" as they have garnered roughly the same popular vote as do the Bloc in Quebec in the last two general elections.

    I suspect that you would not be willing to make that leap, so it seems only fair to make note of the Bloc as representing the views of separatists in Quebec. Pronouncing on that fact should not automatically be deemed anti-French.

    • I doubt very much that anybody would disagree with the statement that the Conservatives consider themselves the representative of Canada.

      • You're avoiding the point. It's not what "the Conservatives" consider themselves, it's about the logical extension of Burl's argument that the Bloc are no longer primarily or exclusively about Separatism.

        • I don't think I'm avoiding anything. I don't necessarily agree that the original commenter's second point is a natural extension of the first. I was commenting specifically on the first – which I don't think is valid.

          However, If you want me to get specific and particular – then yes, OF COURSE the BQ represents the views of French Separatists (where else are they going to park their votes?), but they don't represent ONLY the views of French Separatists. To suggest that they do is to suggest that the majority of Quebecois are, as I stated before, "frothing separatistes". They are not; French-Canadian nationalism is an extremely fluid and elastic concept. And to imply that they are frothing separatistes is dishonest at best and harmful to our fragile national unity at worst.

          I know from previous postings that you're one of the more nuanced minds around here…I'd like to think you're just having a rotten morning and are taking it out on the fine people at Canada Blog :)

          • I know from previous postings that you're one of the more nuanced minds around here…

            I really am a sucker for flattery… I can't even pretend otherwise.

            So let me go back a couple steps and flesh out what I've been saying rather bluntly to this point.

            1) The Bloc Quebecois is a Separatist political party, first and foremost. The fact that they have made discretion the better part of valour in recent years does not change the essential nature of the beast. The don't merely represent a regional population, they represent a nationalist project. That's why comparisons to the western-based Reform Party of old are not valid. Reform was a party of disaffected westerners who wanted IN to the governance of the country while the Bloc was always (and remains) about wanting OUT of the country. Nuance is all well and good, but facts are facts and should never be neglected.

          • Well now we're getting into a whole new discussion about the nature of a political party and from where it derives it's authority. I would argue that regardless of blustery rhetoric, the basis for electoral support for the BQ rests more with French Canadian nationalism (which is, I'm sure you'll grant, an entirely different beast than separatism). My proof for this rests with public polling which has consistently shown separatism to be on the wane in Quebec since 1995. The people who vote for the BQ have shown little desire for seccession (the decline of the PQ could also be seen as proof of this), and I argue that if the BQ was to suddenly start rattling their sabres they'd find a large part of their support dry up.

            What I am inelegantly trying to say is that regardless of official rhetoric, a party's stance is actually defined by those who grant it legitmacy – i.e the voters. Duceppe knows this, which is why you'll find that Separatist language has been muted to the point of being almost non-existent.

            One might counter that nothing has actually changed, that the BQ are simply "pretending" to not be frothing separatists. I would counter with the words of Kurt Vonnegut:

            "We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be."

            cheers.

          • Well argued… but (you knew there would be a but) Gallant did not call Quebec voters "Separatists", she called Bloc MPs" Separatists", as they most assuredly are…

            That's why I first took issue with your claim that she was appealing to "anti-French" sentiment. She was appealing to anti-Separatist sentiment – a sentiment I share, BTW – and you were misrepresenting that appeal as an appeal to bigotry. That's not kosher in my view. As I said, Gallant's letter is plenty objectionable on it's own, there's no need to "read-in" new crimes.

            If Quebecois voters are voting for the Bloc under the misapprehension that the Bloc is not really a Separatist enterprise anymore then they are making of themselves those infamous Lobsters in the Pot.

          • No, she didn't call Quebec voters separtists, sure. But I don't think I'm coming out of left field to consider it a dog-whistle of sorts.

            You may disagree with me, but I firmly believe that Harper's rhetoric during the Prorogue v. 1.0 were not intended to solely impugn the good name of the BQ MPs, but was also an attempt to whip up some anti-french sentiment amongst the English electorate (I believe the majority of Quebecois agreed with me) and cast himself as the true saviour of the Dominion.

            Gallant's non-sequitur about the BQ seems to me to be a ham-fisted attempt to recycle last year's rhetoric. Conservative MPs have been sporadically doing so of late (I saw Poillievre doing the same on Evan Solomon's show two nights ago). Which is why I immediately drew the inference.

            As for your lobster analogy – there's a long-held theory that the longer a reactionary political entity is granted a seat in the legitimiate political theatre, the less reactionary it will become (Bloc MPs will come to enjoy the trappings of Parliament). You seem to disagree – and I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree (but I do not think my position is incorrect)

            cheers

          • "If Quebecois voters are voting for the Bloc under the misapprehension that the Bloc is not really a Separatist enterprise anymore then they are making of themselves those infamous Lobsters in the Pot."

            That's ridiculous. What's going to happen – the Bloc is going to suddenly rise up and tear Quebec out of Confederation all by itself? "Oh no, we thought they had put Separatism behind them! Now they've made us leave Canada!"

            Quebecers are savvy voters. They know that the PQ gives them more clout than distributing their votes among the other parties. And they know that separation can't occur without a referendum. So – out of nationalism and good tactics, they vote PQ because it's the best choice for Quebecers. They're under no misapprehension about the Bloc's separatist goals, but the Bloc doesn't hold the keys on spearation.

          • "Quebecers are savvy voters."

            Ah, yes! The famous savvy voters of Quebec who came within a hair's breadth of going into Mr. Parizeau's pot back in 1995.

            They're under no misapprehension about the Bloc's separatist goals

            Well, Richard & Andre seem to be less than convinced, perhaps you should take it up with them. I think using the threat of separatism as a bargaining chip is infantile and reckless… and not particularly "savvy".

          • You're mixing up two things: 1) Quebecers being sold on the idea of separation as good for them, vs 2) Quebecers being fooled into thinking that the BQ no longers wants to separate (which was your 'lobsters in the pot' point).

            My point is that Quebecers aren't fooled by #2, but understand that the threat of separation gives them extra clout in Ottawa.

          • You're mixing up two things: 1) Quebecers being sold on the idea of separation as good for them, vs 2) Quebecers being fooled into thinking that the BQ no longers wants to separate (which was your 'lobsters in the pot' point).

            I've argued all along that the Bloc is a Separatist party. Richard and Andre have argued that some Bloc voters don't see them as Separatists. It was that argument I was addressing when I compared these (presumptive) unwitting Bloc voters to Parizeau's Lobsters in the Pot. Meaning, of course, that they are making themselves dupes for an unscrupulous political leader, as Mr. Parizeau was…

            If you vote for a Separatist party, you're part of the problem. Even if you only voted for them because you like all the freebies you get from the ROC as a result. And all the "nuance" and "vagueness" and "savvyness" are just justifications for the politics of extortion. Sorry to be blunt, but that's how I feel.

            That doesn't make me anti-French, BTW, it makes me anti-Separatist, as I've always been.

          • "It was that argument I was addressing when I compared these (presumptive) unwitting Bloc voters to Parizeau's Lobsters in the Pot."

            Is there someone there who could help you? You're really not comprehending what I'm saying.

          • You're obviously far too clever to communicate clearly.

            My loss, I guess.

          • http://www.blocquebecois.org/principe.asp

            As far as I can understand and translate their statement, it seems to me the bloc's mission is to represent the democratic will of Quebecers at the federal level as a single unit instead of being part of a national political party. As much as they throw around the word "sovereignty" I wouldn't take it as thinly veiled separatism until the majority of quebecers vote to separate.

          • I'd agree that it's not "thinly veiled" separatism.

            "Le Bloc Québécois est un parti politique souverainiste, implanté exclusivement au Québec."

            My french is pretty thin, but even I can translate that for you: "The Bloc Quebecois is a sovereigntist political party based (founded? grown?) exclusively in Quebec."

            There's not a lot of ambiuguity there. You know the Leafs haven't won the Stanley Cup in over 40 years, but no-one seriously doubts that they have that as their ultimate goal. And no-one ever mistakes them for a baseball team.

          • The difference with the leafs is they CAN win the Stanley cups, and some people might mistake them as golfers and dancers too.

            As I said above they might throwing the word "Souverainiste" around but that word is ambiguous enough to apply to any proposals that gives importance to Quebecers, not necessarily promoting a secession.

          • "As I said above they might throwing the word "Souverainiste" around but that word is ambiguous enough to apply to any proposals that gives importance to Quebecers, not necessarily promoting a secession."

            Absolutely 100% agree. The ambiguity inherent in that word is often lost in this discussion.

    • No, honesty and logic would then imply that the Reform party that was, and is now part of the Conservative party, is every bit the same as the Bloc, but just for a different region of the country. Between the Alberta separatists and the Quebec separatists, it is hard to have a legitimate conversation. And before you tell me that not all Reform supporters are separatists, I'll remind you that not all Bloc supporters are separatists, either.

      But I find it passing strange that someone (and I have seen this on more than one occasion) can sincerely write something like the following without seeing how their logic fails: "joining with the Quebec separatists to form a government is outrageous, and the minute that happens, Alberta will leave Confederation so fast your head will spin. Now what you want to do is allow the new Conservative party, (i.e., the Reformers) to run things as they see fit".

      • Wow, I guess I missed the part in the old Reform platform that approved of secession. Thanks Jenn! It must have been Reform's slogan "We want in" that completely threw me off their real intentions.

        Of course, even though that was TWO parties ago, your are correct that I would be hard pressed to counter that no Albertan separatists ever voted for the present day Conservatives. Equally, the fact that you can't make the same argument for the Liberals or NDP in Quebec or elsewhere rather renders this discussion moot.

      • Jenn, for someone who doesn`t even know when she`s been made fun off, you probably shouldn`t be commenting on your memories of the Reform Party. I suspect everything you know about Reform you learned from the CBC or the Star.

        • as opposed to the party talking points you get your "knowledge" from common man?

          Come on… You chose the reality you chose to believe.

    • Well stated. I find it funny that readers will read something as logical and well-presented as that and still give it a thumbs down.

      • Somebody as nuanced as yourself should know that logic and presentation has nothing to do with the thumbs around here.

  13. Dear Liberal partisans,

    I'm think you've sown up the Chomsky-worshipping crowd.

    You might want to consider enlargening the tent a little if you still aspire to be a big-tent party once again.

    Sincerely,

    jarrid

    • Dear jarrid,

      Thank you for continuing to make us all aware of the disdain that you hold for anyone that does not agree with you. It is a pleasure to have a commenter to point to when looking to illustrate that inane patter used by the CPoC to drown out proper discourse and debate regarding important issues to our country.

      Once again, however, I implore you to finally create an IntenseDebate account that we might have an easily available reference point for your posts. This will also allow you to make sure you stay on message so that you may continue to receive your subsidy from the CPoC for your hard work at making their positions known as loudly and ignorantly as possible.

      Sincerely,

      tdotlib

    • Pot meet Kettle, but angry Pot indeed!

  14. That's pretty funny coming from a representative of the party that has done the most to cause the destruction of Canada.

    • Stephen Harper stopped the Bloc supported Coalition which they were founding members of, and by so doing,

      earned his place in Canadian history,

      and incidentally,

      saved the Liberals from themselves,

      which Michael Ignatieff will confirm when he writes his memoirs one day.

    • How so?

      Care to elaborate what has been destroyed…by a government that has only ever had the command of a minority of votes in both houses!

  15. I wasn't aware that when I said "I was under the impression that most objective observers liken…" I was actually referring to my "singular perception".

    • I'd suggest that it's your singular impression that the Bloc aren't "really"separatists any more. Of course they are… they are simply separatists in a holding pattern.

      • Of course you're aware that I could just as easily say that "they are simply separatists in a holding pattern" is *your* singular impression.

          • There's no date on that brochure so it's hard to say when it was published but by the talking point it sounds like it was meant for the 2006 elections. I don't know if their mission has changed since then but even then I don't think the Bloc's goal was strictly about separatism.

          • Well, this is juct getting silly now. If you won't take their word for it, you're certainly not going to be convinced by me. I'd be wasting your time and my own.

            Let's just agree to disagree.

          • I wish my english was as good as my french, or that my writing skills were better.

            It could also be that your interpretation of separatism evades me but I don't see anything in that brochure that suggests that the BQ would accept nothing but an independent Quebec.

  16. I submit that you greatly over-estimate their threat. Which is not a smart thing to do.

    (actually no I don't. The BQ is a handy boogeyman for your crowd – and frankly I'm getting sick of it)

    • Pierre Trudeau turned in his grave on December 1st, 2008 when his Liberal Party of Canada signed a deal with the devil Duceppe.

      • and thank you for illustrating my point in technicolor.

    • "and frankly I'm getting sick of it"

      How do you think the rest of us feel that we have to pay $8 billion annually, and rising, in danegeld?

  17. Both. But mostly the one who dithered for 18 months after finding out about the problems.

  18. Hey!

    If we throw all the Conservatives and all the Liberals in jail, wouldn't that leave us to have an election with only Greens, NDP, and BQ to choose from?

  19. CNN is reporting that hundreds of thousands of people have died in the Haiti earthquake.

    And Aaron and this band of left/lib partisans are still up in arms about a 5 week prorogue of Parliament.

    Does no one here have any sense of perspective, or at least some compassion for the victims of this monumental tragedy?

    • What a ridiculous accusation…

      As a matter of fact, most people are able to walk and chew gum at the same time. In other words, we are capable of caring about more than 1 issue at any given time… because a monumental tragedy has taken place, does not mean conversation and debate should be stopped on other issues…

    • What a disgusting comment. Your compassion doesn't seem to have cut into your commenting duties, Jarrid.

      It must be hard to keep spinning while the tears roll down your face. But still here you are… What a workhorse!

    • You'll find that on other threads. This particular thread is about Cheryl Gallant's letter trying to justify the prorogation of Canada's Parliament. And if you look, I'm sure you'll be able to find threads about other topics as well.

    • Well done, jarrid! Way to modernize stale, tired talking points that weren't having the desired effect anyway.

      WHY DON'T WE SUPPORT HAITI? WHY DO WE HATE HAITI? Much better than that whole "the troops" thing.

      And hey! Maybe the earthquake in Haiti is finally a good reason to prorogue parliament? Yes, that is definitely the best one so far.

    • I'm taken aback the hyper-partisanship here. Although it's still early, it does appear from what I've just been reading this morning that this is huge catastrophic event which has devasted that island. I don't think the "hundreds of thousands" have died number is confirmed but that's what the Haitian Prime Minister told CNN.

      I'm done posting here for a bit. I'll be watching the news channels and seeing what I can do to help. But carry on fellow commenters, to each there own, I guess.

      • Well i was just about to ask what you'd done about it? Got your credit card handy J? Or are you going to come back and harangue posters, after youv'e finished your screed of course…Prat!

      • "I'm taken aback the hyper-partisanship here"….
        ROTFLMAO jarrid…
        Appropriate expression here is…Petard…hung…YOU!

      • You made a pretty baseless accusation…. I wouldn't classify calling a spade a spade hyper-partisan…. just because someone disagrees with you (and you are partisan) doesn't make them partisan…

      • Shorter Jarrid: I've made a bunch of baseless assertions and had my arse handed to me in a basket so I'm out of here. You cant play with my toys Waaaah!!!

    • There are far more troops in Afghanistan than Haiti. Why are you talking about Haiti? Do you hate the troops.

      Bonus question: Since you think Haiti is so important, what would you ask the govt about our relief efforts in QP? Oh wait, we don't get a QP.

    • jarrid, that is easily one of the lowest, cheapest comments I've read from anyone at these forums who is ostensibly trying to be serious with their commentary. You can be certain that this is the last time I ever reply to anything you have to say here, and it goes without saying I'm finished reading you.

    • Well Jarrid, how much of a donation did you give to the Red Cross today?

  20. Actually he (PM Harper) didn't stop those said transfers for 1 1/2 years after he took power… but I guess I am just splitting hairs.

  21. Cheap shot jarrid.

  22. "Canadian diplomats stationed in Kabul warned the former Liberal government in 2003, 2004 and 2005 that torture was commonplace in Afghan prisons."

    So you have no problem with government that entered an agreement with known torturers and condemn the government that stopped the practice. Do you have any reason for this stance other than you don't like Cons?

    • No, really, joylon, you do need to take reading comprehension classes. What part of "both" was hard for you?

  23. jarrid is so worried about Haiti victims that he had the time to post about the electoral prospects of the Liberal party…

    "Dear Liberal partisans,

    I'm think you've sown up the Chomsky-worshipping crowd.

    You might want to consider enlargening the tent a little if you still aspire to be a big-tent party once again.

    Sincerely,

    jarrid "

  24. "wouldn't that leave us to have an election with only Greens, NDP, and BQ to choose from?"

    No. We would also have communist party, marxist party, animal/environment alliance, libertarian, independent, Christian heritage …. etc.

    It would be no bad thing if Con and Lib parties disappeared.

  25. danke :)

  26. Ouch! This letter is fairly typical?

    I am impressed that you have a problem with my favourite part. Kudos to you!

  27. "What part of "both" was hard for you?"

    The part where he writes 'mostly the one …' while ignoring the government who negotiated and signed an agreement with known torturers, I guess.

    • "Which government? The one that agreed to hand over prisoners to known torturers (PM Martin) or the one that stopped the transfers (PM Harper'

      Things are just so simple when you avoid context…the ibs may have just decided to choose the lesser of two evils, remember Abu Ghraib and Guantanimo were factors here, politically it was not possible to keep on turning over detainees to the Americans – perhaps lobbying by hillier had something to do with the decision? It's why we need to hear all the facts. As for the govt that stopped the tranfers, they're also the ones who did nothing for more than a year after publically defending the 05 agreement.

  28. Well, you certainly nailed that first word, Jenn.

    • yes, too bad joylon missed it altogether.

      • he's too busy grasping at straws to comprehend.

  29. "While the past year has been productive for our Conservative government, the challenge of governing in a minority Parliament, where a significant block of seats are held by separatists dedicated to the destruction of Canada, and the worst global economic recession since the Second World War, Prime Minister Stephen Harper requested, and received permission, to adjourn, or “prorogue” Parliament a few additional weeks."

    Content aside, does anyone else find this to be a poorly written paragraph/sentence?

    • Yeah, it's a complete mess. It's not even a logical thought; it starts out in one direction, wanders around aimlessly for a while and then just trails off into gibberish.

    • It's part of the "we're a party of 'non-elites' " strategy…

      • They'll be eschewing…er leaving out periods next.

  30. So is it transfer payments in general you have a problem with or just those that go to Quebec?

  31. Getting this in early before somebody actually brings that one up in earnest, rather than facetiously:

    Kady's got a post over at the CBC commenting on the difficulties that the prorogation may pose towards getting aid to Haiti. At the moment she's waiting to hear back from the relevant departments with regards to her questions.

    http://www.cbc.ca/politics/insidepolitics/2010/01

  32. and the worst global economic recession since the Second World War

    First they denied it's existence, then they downplayed it's scale and now they're using it as a signpost of their leadership

    Unfricking believable

    • It's amazing how quickly something that was never going to affect Canada turned in to a reason to shut down Parliament eh?

      Before the recession, the message was that it wasn't going to happen. During the recession, the message was that even if it happened (they were still denying we were going to go in to recession for a good while after we went in to recession) the message was that we'd never need to go in to deficit as a result. Now that the recession's pretty much over and we have a large deficit, the message is that we have to pull out all the stops to deal with the terrible historic recession.

      At this rate, by 2011 I'm willing to bet the Tories will be trying to convince us that the recession killed Jesus.

      • …more likely the opposition's insistence on airing the detainee issue caused the deficit to grow exponentially…therefore we had to cut social programmes…and by the way we're prorguing again.

  33. "While the past year has been productive for our Conservative government"

    I don't think "productive" means what she thinks it means…

  34. I exclude Alberta's recent oil revenue extravaganza because a balanced budget under those circumstances is no indication of good management.

    The Harris/Eves/Flaherty budgets were notoriously unreliable, using every trick in the book to minimize the deficit. They were never balanced in any sort of reality. Kinda like Flaherty's federal budgets, no?

    Any other examples? Mulroney? Harper? Reagean? Bush? Bush?

    • "Harris/Eves/Flaherty" ….are these now lumped as one person?

      1. What do you mean by unreliable? The same auditor who said that the Eves government left a deficit for McGuinty (mind you that this was during the year that included SARS and the power outage, both which affected Ontario revenues significantly and unexpectedly) also gave thumbs up in the previous year. If you wish, you can also compare the rate of revenue growth during the Harris era in Ontario with that of Quebec's or other provinces, or jobs growth…

      2. The Alberta deficit was dealt with prior to the massive run-up in oil prices. The Klein government began much earlier than any other province to balance it's budget. However, oil revenues certainly helped alleviate their debt.

  35. My favourite paragraph:

    "While the official opposition is calling for higher taxes, such as increasing the GST and the collecting of a new tax based on "carbon," our government is opposed to new sales and carbon taxes. We believe that by restraining the growth in spending, and as revenue increases as the recession ends and more people are working and paying taxes, the deficit can be eliminated."

    "Carbon", in quotes, as if it doesn't really exist and is only a figment of the opposition's imagination.

    "Restraining the growth in spending", as if she hasn't looked at a government spending chart since…well, ever.

    • Yeah, the carbon in quotes bit was weird eh?

      I'm reasonably convinced that the Tories, generally, don't believe in the supremacy of Parliament, but how can they question the existence of carbon?

    • I don't believe in carbon, either,

      Oxygen, for that matter.

      Phlogisten theory was good enough for my pappy, and gol-durn it, it's good enough for me.

  36. First and foremost, obvious disdain for our central democratic institution, Parliament. Prorogation (the 2nd one) is just the latest example in a string of dangerous precedents being set: sabotaging committee work (remember the manual they whipped up on how to do that?), flat out lying about a proposed coalition while ignoring his own dalliance with the NDP and Bloc a mere 2 years earlier, the first prorogation, and finally just phoning the GG up because he figures it's all in his hands. Past PMs have used these powers responsibly; Harper has sparked a real discussion about having to change the rules because he abuses power so much. None of these things on their own are all that sinful, but the pattern is there and over time the result is a much, much weaker parliament. Ergo, Harper = damage to Canada.

    Speaking of the coalition, Harper's ridiculous frothing-at-the-mouth diatribes about separatists did more to revive the separatist movement than anything Duceppe could ever do. Ergo, Harper = damage to Canada.

    Also, Harper has brought attack-style politics to an all-time low. Attack ads between elections, from the governing party no less? That's never happened, because it's disgusting and that's why people are turning off politics completely. Ergo, Harper = damage to Canada

    Oh, and the darkness….redacted document after redacted document, all in the name of "national security". Please…more like all in the name if saving his own hide. This is the most secretive government in our history, after running on an accountability and transparency! Ergo, Harper = damage to Canada.

    And our reputation abroad…don't even get me started.

    All of these things can be fixed over time, but the longer he's in power, the harder it will be.

    You'll say I'm "just another Liberal." Well I have joined the liberal party, but only after objectively observing all the damage Harper is doing and deciding to help stop him.

    sorry for the length of this thing, but you asked…

    • Ah yes, all this clearly shows that Canada is destroyed. Seriously though, if you take off your partisan hat, you might find that these kind of things have been going on for years. I don't think the Cons invented negative advertising, document redaction, or shutting down things they don't like (look up how the Chretien government shut down a public inquiry into the behavior of our troops in Somalia).

      As for joining a political party to express your express, good on you. Not enough people get engaged in the political process.

Sign in to comment.