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Friday, December 05, 2008

Moving forward 

Here are my thoughts.
First, this Liberal-NDP coalition was formed as a specific response to Harper's inadequate, clumsy and insulting economic statement. We wanted to try to save the Canadian economy. With no parliament now anyway, talking about defeating the government to bring in some innovative government programs to save the economy strikes me as a pretty meaningless activity right now.
Second, the electorate, me included, don't really care whether the MPs like each other or not -- we didn't elect people to be nice but to get things done. So talking about how the Conservative government has to be defeated because of the poisonous atmosphere in Parliament also strikes me as meaningless right now.
As a result, I don't think the coalition can be functional again until we see what Harper's budget has to offer at the end of January.
Then, if the Canadian economy is in worse shape by then -- as I expect it will be --
and if the Harper budget is ideological, inept and incompetent -- as I expect it will be --
and if the Liberals have a real leader by then -- that's a big IF --
and if he and the NDP and the Bloc can get it together again -- another big IF --
well, we'll see what can be done.
The benefit of all the news stories about how parliamentary democracy actually works means that by the end of January the public will be paying close attention to what the Conservatives are doing. And they will understand by then that a Canadian coalition would offer a serious, legitimate and viable alternative to continued Conservative divisiveness and ineptitude. If the Conservative budget is weak, then I believe public support for the Coalition would be strong.
And if the Conservative budget is defeated, and if the Coalition is rejected by the Governor General, and if an election is called, then the Liberals and the NDP would be fighting it together. In effect, this would create a Liberal-NDP merger and this might well be the best solution for the country anyway.
But this time, boys, keep the photo ops to just Iggy (or Rae) and Layton.

And of course, I could be wrong.

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