Wednesday, January 28, 2009

What Could Have Been?

As I mentioned at the time of the Great Canadian Coup d’état, Harper should not have tried to seek to prorogue Parliament.

If he lost the confidence vote, he could have demanded an election. If the coalition agreed, he was a cinch for a majority. Were the Liberals going to run with Dion again? Impossible. They would have backed off completely if faced with this. Harper should have called the bluff.

He could have let the Governor General decide to allow the Coalition. Imagine that clown Dion presenting this horrendous, mega-deficit budget? What a scenario: The Liberal leadership candidates squabbling all the way until May at the convention; Jack the Mustache annoying the hell out of the public as a cabinet minister; Gilles Duceppe is lauded in Quebec for all the extra pork; The PR would be so bad, it would guarantee a Tory majority in the future. Iggy’s career would be permanently damaged.

Instead the Conservatives own this terrible pork-barrel budget. Lefties won’t even appreciate it, and conservatives are repulsed. It looks like things are going to get worse, no matter what's in the budget, so it gives the Liberals a chance to say it wasn't their fault.

The only hope is that the opposition votes it down today. I doubt the Liberals will be so foolish.


  1. I wonder if any Tory backbenchers will vote against it, I know I would. I just don`t think you can poison your own well, with this sort of pork spending. This would be like the NDP banning unions in Canada. The Tory backbenchers better start looking over their shoulder, a Reform like back lash may on the way.

  2. I understand your frustration Anon but another Reform backlash will just ensure a Liberal gov't leading us for at least another decade.

    It is conundrum though. The only way the Tories can win power is to water down their policy book and appear more like Liberals. If they're lucky enough to win a majority they're tied to the platform and the special interests in the "big tent" party. (a la Que. in the Mulroney gov't) If they only win a minority they're forced to go even further left to remain in power. No matter what the scenario conservatism takes a back seat.

    The deeper problem, as mentioned in my previous comment under a different thread, is that there needs to be a much better sales job of conservatism. Canadians are all too willing to believe the NDP and Liberals are the more fair and reasonable way to go.

    We may not like this budget or how Harper is straying from his principles but we are a stark minority in this country. You can't win over the rest during an election campaign. There's much more ground work to be done.

    Of course, timing is another factor. If we're playing "what if's" what if Mike Harris had never existed? If he hadn't Harper probably would have won a majority two elections ago.

    Is Harper the proper salesman? He may not be but out of the list of other contenders he's probably more a conservative than the rest. The only reason to ditch Harper would be to elect a leader that represents a softer brand of conservatism. That doesn't get us where we want to go. The same underlying problem still exists.

    The other question is, is conservatism better served in opposition? You can argue a principled conservative party keeping the Liberals in check can get more done. I don't agree with this stance but I can understand why some feel this way.