Please note the question mark in the title of this post. It’s not a prediction, it’s a cry for help. It’s the battered and fragile rationality centre of my brain finally collapsing in on itself like the house at the end of Poltergeist. It’s one of many Ghosts of Christmas Future, and every one of them is a seriously funky phantom. Survey with us these possibilities. Suggest your own.
1. This Eco-Fisc Update sets the stage for a confidence vote on a ways and means motion. We have already heard from all three opposition parties: they’ll vote against it. They outnumber the government. If nobody backs down, the government falls. Then? Well:
2. First of all, somebody might back down. The government, though I don’t know how they can fail to put a money update to a vote on a money bill. One of the opposition parties, though they could not have been more categorical. But it’s a possibility so I wanted to add it to the list.
3. If Harper 2.0 does fall, the prime minister will certainly visit the Governor General and ask for a new election. And what do you know? She’s travelling again. Watch that blackberry, Excellency; you may not last as far as Slovenia.
4. Note that (3.) contained the word “certainly.” This means it is probably not right.
5. Where were we? Oh right. A second GG visit within a calendar year may finally give Her Excellency a chance to act out an Andrew Coyne column. “Nay!” she’d say. Unless she…
6. …doesn’t. We could be in an election campaign in five days. Nobody has any money! Nobody has a plan, except to spend five weeks acting out the last week of the last campaign! But then, she…
7. …might throw it back into the House. (Incidentally, the NDP could hardly be making it more obvious, through Jack Layton’s remarks in the House and Brad Lavigne’s on Newman, that they’re pretty nearly desperate to avoid an election. Remember how they spent the limit in the last election, for the first time ever? Yeah, they were mortgaged to the hilt to pay for it. So a Parliamentary solution is a consummation devoutly to be wished if you’re Layton.) Who, then, could lead a workable voting majority in the Commons? Well, the obvious candidate is…
8. …Elizabeth May. Sorry, I mean Stéphane Dion. Like her, I have such a hard time telling the two of them apart. He is, after all, the leader of the largest party in the Commons. Downside: At this point, he has so thoroughly worn out his welcome that nobody in his caucus would spit down his throat if his heart was on fire. So maybe the price of three-party cooperation is the designation of somebody else as prime minister.
9. Bob Rae?
11. Michael Ignatieff?
12. I don’t know. This thing got so weird a while back that I have no idea what’s coming next. Over to you, dear readers. Open thread.
HANDY REMINDER UPDATE: It’s not as though there’s anything else the country should be paying attention to.