Monday, 1 December 2008

Who said Canadian politics are boring? Updated.

As far back as I can remember, nothing quite so exciting has been on the brink of happening in Canadian federal politics.

I am no political expert, but basically what is happening is that the prime minister, who holds less than 50% of the seats in parliament, could be ousted by the formation of a coalition of the other three parties, who do hold more than 50% of those seats all together. I'm no fan of the current prime minister - in my opinion he is an arrogant, glib and superficial politician who is good at nothing but game-playing and manipulation. He hasn't demonstrated strong leadership qualities, such as integrity and consensus-building, and he seems to have a deep contempt for the very things that make us Canadian, such as respect, fairness and open-mindedness.

There are good things and bad things about the formation of a coalition government. Some of the good things are that the majority of Canadians who voted would actually be represented by the combined governing body, and that Canada's core values would again have a chance to be manifest in the way the country is governed.

One of the bad things is that no matter who is governing, the "economic collapse" is going to happen anyway, in my opinion, and the party/parties in power while that's happening are going to take the blame. That will pretty much do in any chance the Liberals or their ilk would have at forming a government after the next election, whenever that might be. But whichever way this goes, I am heartened by the fact that things can and do change, and that people do still have the will and the wherewithal to act boldly and courageously when their careers are at stake.

So I'm counting down the days until the non-confidence motion is voted on, and wondering what might still happen in the meantime....


Update: December 4, 2008: The Governor General has agreed to let Harper prorogue parliament. I'm devastated. Democracy is dead when a bully can lie with impunity and shut things down to retain power. As of today I live in a dictatorship.

Picture courtesy The Canadian

12 comments:

Liz said...

These are kind of exciting days, aren't they? You summed it up well, Theresa. I agree that whoever is in power through this recession will probably be voted out in the next election. But, I'm becoming hopeful that if this coalition succeeds, Stephen Harper and his sweaters will be turfed by his own party. And that would be a good thing for Canada.

Theresa said...

I agree with you Liz - that's one more thing on the positive side - I do think Harper will be let go as leader of the Conservatives, maybe even if the coalition doesn't work. We live in interesting times, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

Hello Theresa,

Things just keep getting more interesting every day, that's for sure! I wonder what the opinions/reactions of Canadians will be. Harper DID just get elected, even though he didn't get the majority of the popular vote.

Whatever happens, please, no more elections! I can't stand the disappointment.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous" is Ingrid.

Theresa said...

Hi Ingrid - I agree - no more elections!

It looks like Harper is winding up the conservative propaganda machine now though - we're in for a rough ride I think. He's not going to give up power without a big, dirty fight.

Gord H. said...

hi theresa,

i've learned a lot about the PM by his choice of friends. SH strikes me as a control-taker who has a strong, but misdirected, voice.

His minority gov't is the gift that keeps on giving, as far as the media is concerned.

cheers,

gord h.

ps porogies anyone??

ann d said...

Great to meet you! Your blog is really fascinating. Thanks for dropping by my blog.

Theresa said...

You too Ann - thanks :)

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I am really scared today, waiting to see what happens with Harper and the Governor General. I fear my country will never be the same.

::::wifemothermaniac:::: said...

I'm guessing, and I'm certainly no political expert, but I'm guessing that keeping the current government in place will also save our country many of millions of dollars that it would cost to switch things over.....

Theresa said...

WMM - saving money is certainly good. The thing I fear the most now is that any PM wanting to hold on to power illegitimately can just get the GG to prorogue parliament, now that the precident has been set. I fear our democracy has been weakened significantly. I suppose that no matter what had happened, this would have been the case. It is a sad, sad day for Canada.

Coll said...

Stephen Harper is showing us that parliamentary process is not what is important to him but that he has to stay in power. I was very afraid that the G.G. would prorogue the house after I saw her comments on the news about the letters from the coalition and unfortunately I was correct. I feel the precedent set by this action is appalling. Any time a leader feels he is in danger of being put out of power he can appeal to the G.G. to cancel parliament. Now unfortunately we have to put up with the conservatives advertisements and propaganda. In case anyone is interested the Bloc offered to support the coalition but did not sign the agreement. The media take on the whole situation seemed rather biased in certain areas. I am saddened that our country is becoming so immoral and lacking in integrity. About the only positive in the whole situation is that S.H. is forced to address the economic situation.

Theresa said...

Coll, I had attempted to steel myself to the likelihood that the House would be prorogued by the GG, but I was a lot more upset than I thought I would be when it actually happened. I share your fears about Harper and his motivations.