Sunday, May 19, 2024

Into the long weekend: mosquitos and Poilievre and polls, oh my

Ahh, summer is starting at last!
Moving on to something even more biting, I think Pierre Poilievre is now finding there is a downside to being up 20 points in the polls -- people actually expect to hear something sensible from him sometimes, not the usual anti-Trudeau deflection three-word-slogan talking points. 
Some examples: 
In the Globe and Mail, Shannon Proudfoot describes why it matters that Pierre Poilievre pretends all the media is against him and refuses to even try to answer press questions: Pierre Poilievre is pretending he doesn’t know how his job works because it makes it easier
...Mr. Poilievre has spent the past two years energetically insisting that any journalist who asks him a spiky question is enacting some greasy partisan agenda. There are entire swaths of the media that he’s been training the public to see as #JustinJourno grifters....
...What he’s doing is insulating himself from any future unwelcome questions or scandals that might surface. And he’s teaching the receptive public to automatically distrust anyone critical of him. That means Mr. Poilievre doesn’t even have to be there to yell at some annoying reporter, because he’s already set the table for people to discount them.
Imagine what this looks like three years from now when – if current polls hold – Mr. Poilievre will be prime minister and perched atop a stout majority in the House of Commons.
Spending issues, policy choices, dumb programs, stinky e-mails, ugly behaviour from public officials – why, to poke at any of it is to be part of the conspiracy. To deny this, or to insist these are valid questions that the public deserves answers to? That’s what bought-and-paid-for stooges would say...

 Also in the Globe and Mail, Campbell Clark notes that Poilievre talks a lot about what Trudeau shouldn't do, but won't talk about what the Conservatives would do instead: Nobody asked you about Utopia, Mr. Poilievre
...Mr. Poilievre answers so many of those questions by talking about Mr. Trudeau.Mr. Poilievre expresses so many opinions strongly, even courting calculated controversy – for example by declaring he would use the notwithstanding clause to toughen sentencing options for murderers – that it’s often surprising that he has no views on many big things....
Last year, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland tabled a budget that outlined $80-billion in industrial subsidies for green technology, including for electrification for provincial power utilities and green-tech manufacturing. But Mr. Poilievre wouldn’t say whether he was for or against all that.
The federal government and Ontario pledged a total of $28.2-billion to Stellantis and Volkswagen to lure their battery plants. Mr. Poilievre’s party has criticized the permits for temporary foreign workers to set up the machinery, but it hasn’t said whether it would stop all these subsidies.
That’s a pretty big issue, especially while Canada’s largest trading partner, the U.S., has plotted a massively subsidized, decade-long industrial strategy. Canadians might want to hear what Mr. Poilievre thinks he might do about all that if and when Mr. Trudeau is no longer PM. But his answer was just a general diss for Mr. Trudeau.
“We always look at Justin Trudeau’s many promises and we judge them not on what he says but what actually happens,” he said. Then he went on to talk about other things....
Maybe Poilievre has a secret plan: Also worth noting, too: Also in the Globe and Mail, Andrew Coyne discusses the danger to our Charter of Rights and Freedoms if Poilievre does as he is threatening to do, using the Notwithstanding clause to override Supreme Court decisions: An Election About the Charter? What does the PM have to lose?
...The Charter is essentially a promise, a written contract with the public, in which Parliament and the provinces agreed to respect certain limits in their laws and acts, so far as these touched upon the rights of the people. It is not up to the signatories of a contract to decide for themselves whether they have abided by it. That is what the courts are for.
... If the federal government joins the provinces in stomping on the Charter, it is effectively dead. And if the Charter falls by the wayside, much else will as well. It isn’t only the Charter the provinces have taken to trampling upon lately, after all: it is the whole constitutional order, the division of powers, the very rule of law. ...
If the federal government joins the provinces in stomping on the Charter, it is effectively dead. And if the Charter falls by the wayside, much else will as well. It isn’t only the Charter the provinces have taken to trampling upon lately, after all: it is the whole constitutional order, the division of powers, the very rule of law. ...
Precisely where to draw the line in defence of the Charter can be debated. But the hour is late. An election about the Charter may or may not save the Prime Minister’s government. But it would do much to rescue his reputation.
In Xtra, parliamentary reporter Dale Smith writes about losing rights to "wannabe authoritarians" and The dangerous potential of Poilievre’s promise to use Notwithstanding Clause
...The thing with wannabe authoritarians, and we’ve seen this in Poland with the rise of the Law and Justice party in the early 2000s, or with Viktor Orbán in Hungary, particularly post-2010, is that it never stops with removing one group’s fundamental rights—they need to keep progressing to other groups. In Canada, the ground on this has already been softened by several provincial premiers in their own pre-emptive use of the notwithstanding clause for their own political ends, whether in Ontario around bans on third-party political advertising (who successfully pushed back against the Progressive Conservatives in Ontario for decades), Quebec’s so-called “secularism” laws that have a disproportionate impact on Muslim women (by sheer coincidence, surely) or in Saskatchewan, where the clause was invoked to prevent court challenges of the province’s policies targeting trans youth. Poilievre may insist that he would only invoke the clause for criminal law cases where he feels the courts have gone too far, but that’s often where these things start, and it’s hard to know when it will end.
But as concerning as Poilievre’s announced intentions are, I also worry about the Liberals in particular overplaying their hands by railing about this right now, most especially when it comes to abortion rights and whether Poilievre would use the notwithstanding clause there as well. Several Liberals have pointed out the fact that abortion, too, was once criminalized, so it could very well fall under that framework of only applying the clause to criminal matters. One could also say the same thing about gay sex, where we only just got several of those laws that in particular targeted the gay community out of the statute books. And while the Liberals are right to raise this as a concern, my fear is that by beating this drum between now and a possible election in 18 months, they run the risk of desensitizing the public to these issues rather than turning them against Poilievre....
Hmm... Smith may have a point
Moving on, I wonder if this will stand up: Another interesting point here:


John W said...

Does Laura Stone attend any Poilievre press conferences?

Cathie from Canada said...

Yes, I wonder too. PP is finding it remarkablr easy to intimidate reporters.

lungta said...

When do we start to get to hear from 'lil pp le pire
"If I am elected it will be the legitimate will of the people ; if I am not elected then that will be proof of a rigged election"

e.a.f. said...

PP's behaviour towards the press, is not unlike Harper's, when he refused to hold press conferences, answer questions, etc. The press has already been "trained". This is the refresher course.
Removing rights Canadians now enjoy works for the Cons and their financial backers. He wants to toughen laws for murderers. Not surprising. When Harper ran for re election last time, my concern was he would implement the death penalty and start meddling with Women's health care.

An election based on PP's disregard for the Charter of Rights, etc. might be a very good idea. The man simply can not be trusted. He was part of Harper's government and that gang passed 9 pieces so federal legislation, which they were told would violate the Constitution. The Supreme Court over turned Harper's attempt at Americanization of our justice system and trying to place his choice for Supreme Court Justice, violating the game rules for appointing them. People might want to go back and review those 9 pieces of Leg. Harper and PP tried to implement in law and see what their plans are for this round, if elected.

Some may no longer want Trudeau as P.M. but as a friend told some one, you may not like Trudeau but you do like those cheques the government sends every month for your children. If PP is elected you can bet they will stop as he, "wants to balance the budget" and give corporations tax breaks so the country's economy will improve. In the meantime at least 250K children will drop below the poverty line. Changing sentences for murder will not stop murder, just look south of the border where the government murders people who murder others. they're murdering hand over fist. When people are in the middle of a rage they don't stop to think about the consequences of their actions.