Democracy reinstated - Macleans.ca
 

Democracy reinstated


 

Conservative Brent Rathgeber issues an important clarification as to his previous statement on the state of democracy in Canada.

must clarify—Parliament is being suspended–democracy is much larger and much broader and of course continues everyday in Canada.


 

Democracy reinstated

  1. Was this a PMO-approved clarification?

    • Doubtful. I expect it was a PMO-directed clarification.

  2. Sounds like someone got a phone call from the PMO.

  3. Dimitri must have screamed and hollered about that one! Speaking of Dimitri, he must really be feeling the heat, since his communications plan of sneaking out the Prorogue effort over Christmas has really backfired.

  4. Hello?… Uh… Hello D- uh hello Dmitri? Listen uh uh I can't hear too well. Do you suppose you could turn the music down just a little?… Oh-ho, that's much better… yeah… huh… yes… Fine, I can hear you now, Dmitri… Clear and plain and coming through fine… I'm coming through fine, too, eh?… Good, then… well, then, as you say, we're both coming through fine… Good… Well, it's good that you're fine and… and I'm fine… I agree with you, it's great to be fine… a-ha-ha-ha-ha… Now then, Dmitri, you know how we've always talked about the possibility of something going wrong with the prorogation…

  5. Well that's a relief, I can now sleep better.

  6. The Facebook page just hit 100K, so I guess somebody's voting for something.

    • How many Facebook accounts do you have and how many times have you joined?

  7. Or more than six calls from constituents in Edmonton–St. Albert.

  8. Is there another kind?

  9. Pure gold.

  10. Geez, once Harper gets that majority he'll just suspend facebook…

  11. "Did I say 'a sh*tload of grapeshot'? Really? On tape? Well, obviously I meant a whiff of grapeshot. Whiff, with an H, right. We're defending the Republic here. Whiff of grapeshot."

  12. i think you mean he'll prorogue it

  13. Rathgeber's clarification is soaked in his own urine

  14. And they wonder why Harper doesn't permit his MPs to speak…

  15. and at 8:10 am the award for Funniest Thing I'll Read Online Today has already been won!

  16. So, Brent R., what is Parliament? I mean, people elect you to be a Member of Parliament.

    Time for a refresher course in civics for Brent baby, and his PMO handlers.

  17. Oh please! That idiot is probably blaming Steven Guilbeault for it all.

  18. I find it fairly amusing how a majority of people in that EKOS poll find Harper's proroguation "undemocratic". Of course it's not really undemocratic, but then again, neither was a coalition.

    Harper appears to be getting punished by the very same kind of visceral reactions he so skillfully manipulated last year.

  19. Yeah, I think that has something to do with it. I also think that for many people, nuance doesn't really play well.

  20. But sobriety does, which many Canadians seem to have made a resolution this year!

  21. The difference might be unimportant, but I think the poll used the word "anti-democratic". Not that I'm certain it would make any difference to most respondents.

  22. Yeah, I noticed that almost immediately after I posted and thought about editing my post, but like you came to the conclusion that for respondents the difference would be negligible.

    (to be clear though, the actions can most certainly be described as anti-democratic, but not undemocratic…would you agree?)

    p.s. The phrase I was casting about for but couldn't come up with was "hoisted on his own petard" :)

  23. There`s way too many plus numbers on this Lib blog today so here is a little balance.

    All of you are hoping that there will be a massive revolt in the country because you are under the illusion that the public will all of a sudden feel nostalgic about Parliament. Well I`ve got news for you, when we think of Parliament we think of Question Period and to a lesser extent Committees. Coyne can tell us how these institutions have become poisoned but what we see are the same questions asked day after day after day and always the same answers. We know the only sincere motive the opp. has is to somehow use any method to embarass, injure, defeat the government.

    And you expect there will be people on the streets wanting to hurry and bring back that sheet. No you guys spend too much time theorizing and juvenile remarks. When you look back in a couple of months you will see that Harper was right once again.

  24. can't recall for sure Sean, but think you are right. i think it makes a difference because while prorogation is technically not "undemocratic", it infringes on the operation of the basic aspect of our democratic system.

  25. I like your original phrasing better, anyway.

    I only mentioned the word because it seemed unusual to me when I first read the piece. I wonder if the Ekos staff had a discussion about the meaning of "undemocratic" and decided that "anti" was somehow more accurate.

    I agree that the distinction is pragmatically meaningless between the two. But I do think it's possible to describe perfectly legal actions as un/antidemocratic. Common examples could include leaders forcing nominations upon ridings, back-room horsetrading deals between parties, whipping votes, stonewalling during QP, and so on: none of it is particularly illegal or against the constitution, but they are all arguably working against democracy in some way.

    I think most Canadians accept that "pure" democracy would be often too messy to get things done effectively, but at the same time have a vague sense of when politicians go too far, and at that point rally the term "undemocratic". Like now.

  26. You project too much. It may give you comfort to assume everyone approaches this from the same position of visceral partisan anger as you do, but you're wrong about that.

  27. …despite our best efforts ROFL kbainow!!!!11111oneoneone

  28. I don`t think there is as much anger out there as there is resignation. After watching 4 years of everything from body bags to the letter C on a hat we`re sick of it. We`re trying to figure out if there will be any jobs for our kids and any pension for us and you want us to get these guys back in Ottawa to fight over what was in an e-mail 3 years ago about something that may have happened to an Afghan roadside bomber. If the bomber hasn`t already blown himself up, he`s probably long since forgotten about the incident that the opp. wants to use against the government.

  29. I think it's pretty obvious…the "common man" does ;)

  30. "we`re sick of it."
    "We`re trying to figure out"
    "you want us to get these guys back in Ottawa"

    Common Man fancies the "we" to be the Silent Majority of Real Canadians, but really, it only includes him, Jarrid, s_c_f and AVR.

  31. Dont forget wilson

  32. Ultimately the people will decide if the institutions you speak off are worthy of respect. Look you`ve already decided that Harper is to blame for any disfunction there is in Ottawa but a lot of people will say the problem is

    an offical opp. that still thinks it`s just on a timeout from power and cannot grasp the idea that the people will respect solid, useful criticism as opposed to this hysterical lunging from one phony scandal to the next.

    I`m just saying that the idea that after 4 years of the constant bickering that is Ottawa`s political circle we welcome a break from it all. And the fact that Liberals want Parliament back so they can continue with this monotonous bickering is a losing position.

    They would be wise to put some serious thought into that upcoming Thinkers Conference or it will be quickly labelled the Stinkers Conference.

  33. The Facebook group, at over 108,000 now has a supporting website: http://noprorogue.ca/

  34. Perhaps to a lot of people undemocratic means illegitimate?

  35. I can tell you quite certainly that shutting down Parliament, throwing out half is legislative agenda, shutting down comittees… all so (1) his MPs can go see the Olympics in person, as his MPs are telling us or (2) to avoid accountability, as most Canadians believe… doesn't require Canadians to do much "theorizing" or for us to conclude what he did was wrong and for the wrong reasons.

  36. yeah i can only imagine the whimpering while he was being lambasted by central control.

  37. You project too much. It may give you comfort to assume everyone approaches this from the same position of visceral partisan anger as you do, but you're wrong about that.

  38. Who gets to decide when our institutions of representation and accountability ought or ought not to be respected?

  39. The Emperor wears no clothes.

    – The Economist