Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Andrew Coyne: Voice of Sanity

It's a joy to read this post by Andrew Coyne. There are so many great parts, and here are a few:

Absolutely no one pins even a sliver of blame on the Liberals, the NDP or the Bloc. Of course not. Faced with the unreasonable and extreme proposal that they raise funds in the same way as the Conservatives have been doing for years — by asking people for their money, rather than taking it from them — they really had no alternative but to seize power. What on earth were they supposed to do? Revamp their moribund fund-raising organizations? Find a message and a leader capable of motivating large numbers of Canadians to click the “donate” button on their websites? Get off their collective duffs? What were the Tories thinking?


Again, the commentariat is as of one maddened mind. How could the government be so blind? Can it not see that unemployment has soared to 6.2%? Why, that’s four-tenths of a percentage point above its recent, thirty-year low. And what about Canadians’ fears of losing their home, what with the proportion of mortgages more than 90 days in arrears standing at an all-time record 0.2%?
Okay, it’s an all-time record low, but still. When will it realize there’s a Depression on? Or coming? Or quite possible, certainly, in other countries.


  1. As usual (IMHO) Coyne nails it! I have been screaming this for 48hrs now but not so eloquently;

    " is important to remember that the opposition’s sudden lurch for power had nothing to do with the impending loss of public funds. No, the reason they are absolutely forced to defeat the government this time, having declined to do so over Afghanistan, or global warming, or budgets 2006, 2007 ot 2008, is on account of the fall update. Nothing bespeaks the fierce urgency of now so much as an annual statistical review..."


    "...Or rather, it only counts as stimulus if a Liberal government spends it. The Tories have already promised to deliver billions more in “stimulus” in the next budget. But that’s, like, 58 days from now. We can’t possibly wait until then. We cannot wait to see how the economic situation evolves, or what effect the extraordinary series of measures countries around the world have taken to date will have. We cannot wait to see what the Americans will do. By then the polls might have shifted. By then the crisis might have passed. The government must fall now — so that it can fall again in a month’s time."

  2. Coynes's on a role!

    "And he (Dion) will be powerless to resist either of them. He will have no legitimacy, no authority, no base of support. His party could not possibly endure another election, even with public funds; theirs could. His sole job will be to pay them ransom, in regular installments, until the whole thing collapses of its own weight — probably in a matter of weeks. It isn’t just that the coalition is made up of parties with wholly incompatible agendas. At some point, somebody will miscalculate, push too hard, overplay their hand. Or, most likely, either the NDP or the Bloc — possibly both — will decide, once they have milked the Liberals dry, that it would be better to provoke an election in the spring, while Dion is still leader, than wait until May, and the arrival of another, presumably more popular Liberal leader. (Oh, but it could not happen, Dion replies: he has a piece of paper. Please. Whipping up “betrayals,” is the Bloc’s life’s work. They do that sort of thing in their sleep: “This is not what we signed onto. The Liberals have not lived up to their end of the bargain. etc. etc.” The 18 month “commitment” is meaningless. It’s an agreement to support the government until they don’t.)"


    "When will the grown-ups in the party take charge? Already we are seeing some cracks in the Liberals’ resolve. Quietly, through surrogates, Michael Ignatieff has let his discomfort with the arrangement be known. A couple of the Liberal “wise men” who supposedly were to guide the coalition’s economic policies have publicly disowned the idea.

    But if the party is to be preserved from the abyss towards which it is hurtling, somebody is going to have to grab the wheel. It’s not enough to hope that the Governor General will dissolve Parliament before then, or that Harper will prorogue Parliament. The first is unlikely, and the second only postpones the inevitable. Somebody needs to speak out, now."