Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Canada's Two Opposition Leaders

Canada does not have a PM it has an Opposition Leader running a Minority Government.

That is what was revealed by Stephen Harpers actions in the House during Question Period today.

He attempted a personal slander against a Liberal MP but was shouted down by the Official Opposition Liberals before he could finish quoting this from the Vancouver Sun;

A young Liberal MP who delivered Stephane Dion 250 leadership votes is the son-in-law of a man police have interviewed in connection with the Air India bombing case. Navdeep Singh Bains, MP for Mississauga-Brampton South, shot on to the national stage after the December 2006 convention in which he delivered huge support to Gerard Kennedy and later to Dion, who won the Liberal leadership by 437 votes.

The Vancouver Sun reporter is on a campaign to link the Federal Liberals directly to the Air India disaster. And it is a conspiracy theory worthy of a tinfoil hat. Her apparent political biases are gleefully pointed out by at least one sympathetic conservative blogger at the National Pest. She goes way back to show that the whole Air India disaster was Liberal bungling, or worse, conspiracy with nationalist militants in the Sikh community.

The number of questions surrounding why the Liberal party has suddenly done an about face on extending important provisions of the Anti-Terrorism Act, provisions needed to continue the investigation of the Air India bombing, continues to grow.

Reporter Kim Bolan at the Vancouver Sun revealed that former prime minister Paul Martin sought the support of a terrorist group, the International Sikh Youth Federation, during his 1990 bid for the Liberal leadership.

Mr. Martin, flanked by other notable Liberals (Albina Guarnieri and Maurizio Bevilacqua) appeared at an ISYK convention asking delegates for their support as he sought the leadership of the party.

Here is the critical line in Ms. Bolan's report: "The Martin speech came two years after then Conservative external affairs minister Joe Clark warned Canadian politicians to steer clear of the federation, the Babbar Khalsa and the World Sikh Organization because of terrorist links."

Harper used the pretext of the Air India Inquiry and his attempt to renew the Liberals Anti-Terrorism Act to personally vilify and call into question the integrity of a sitting MP and his family. He was so eager he almost jumped out of his ill fitting suit.

Like the blogger at the National Pest, Harper is attempting to opportunistically use the Air India disaster and its 'about to fail public inquiry' to throw heat on the Liberals.

The Conservatives in opposition have long held that there was something nefarious and untoward in the Liberals working with their traditional base; immigrants and new Canadians. The Vancouver Sun reporter continues her articles in the same vein. The swipe by both the Vancouver Sun and the Conservatives is that the Liberals are guilty of associating with terrorists because of their support and fund raising in the Sikh and Tamil communities. A broad brush is used condemning whole communities, and the terrorist smear is one of convenience for the Conservatives. After all they have skeletons in their own closet.

What Harper attempted to do today was something that was NOT Prime Ministerial. Being the autocrat and autarch he is, he could not resist.

But PM's being statesmen and parliamentarians do not do such things. They leave the bullying and bully boy tactics to underlings, to cabinet ministers, to right hand men and women, whom they trust. To be able to sit back serenely in knowing you ordered the hit but not taking the pleasure or abuse that comes from delivering it.

But pompous megalomaniac he is Harper could not resist, nor could he trust anyone else to deliver his hit on Dion and the Liberals.And so he showed himself to be what he really is, an Opposition Leader. Not a Prime Minister.

And what he was today was an Opposition Leader, a strong one, one who is gaining in the polls. And thus one doomed by his limitations of office, and personality, to act like an Opposition Leader rather than as a PM. Holding on to power with a minority, but acting like you are majority has won Harper the polling support of some Canadians.

But in reality what the recent polls have shown is that he is far better as Leader of the Opposition than Dion is.

And that is what he confirmed today. He does not have the stuff to be PM. He is no statesman, and no parliamentarian.

He spoke of being the Executive branch of the government, and he is one who wants Executive power and prestige that the office of President has to the south.

And as such he will always be a pretender not a PM in the Canadian system of parliamentary politics.

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Erik Abbink said...

I can not believe the thing the Conservatives have done today.

Did you see Jason (mouthbreather) Kenney on Prime Politics? The guy is nuts!

Defending the actions of the PM today is simply not acceptable.

Mike said...

Goddamn straight Eugene. I damn near jumped out of my chair when I saw this last night.

Harper and the Conservatives are bastards, each and every one of them. No shame and no sense of decency or truth.