Friday, November 28, 2008

Undemocratic, You Say?

So, the opposition parties are talking about forming a coalition if they topple the HarperCon$ next week.

Sez the PMO:

The opposition is entitled to defeat the government as it sees fit, Harper said Friday, but Dion himself does not have the right to take power without an election.

"They want to put in place a government led by one party which received its lowest popular vote since Confederation," he said.

Well, the other side of that one is that we are now being governed by a party that didn't exactly overwhelm voters last election either. In fact, a Liberal-NDP-Bloc coalition would actually represent a plurality of voters in Canada.

Of course, as has been typical of the HarperCon$, instead of actually governing, everything is a game to play for them. In the case of the the "FU" that Flaherty delivered yesterday, the lovely little red herring of party funding is in there. The amount of money involved is relatively small, so it's fiscally irrelevant to the government's books.

If the Con$ got it through, they just weakened their opponents by taking money away from them; if the opposition toppled the government, the Con$ would have had a lovely meme to wave in front of the voters.

I see that in today's news, Harper has dropped that little clause from the FU motion that will be before the house on Monday. Whether that is enough to persuade one of the opposition parties to go along with the Con$ is yet to be seen. I think what is most unfortunate is that Harper and his band of goons still have not understood that a truly successful minority government works by collaborating with the opposition.

If the Con$ do fall on Monday, and a coalition is formed, I imagine that we will be seeing an election before 2009 is out. I will be very surprised indeed if the coalition lasts much past the Liberal leadership selection.

I see Harper's now trying for stalling tactics to buy himself time.


Véronique said...

I knew you'd have to weigh in. :)

Of course Dion does not have the right to take power. He does, however, have the right to propose that the Governor General accept a coalition government rather than dissolve Parliament. That is completely within both our written and unwritten constitutional procedures.

There is clearly a crying need for better civics education when even the Prime Minister doesn't know how our system works.

MgS said...

Oh, I think Harper knows exactly how our system works - he just doesn't care.

Véronique said...

Which is one reason it's a mistake to call the Harper Party "conservative." They have no respect for traditions, which have stood us in good stead since Confederation. Any real conservative would.

They want to do a radical restructuring of Canada, on the sly because they know that a majority of the electorate doesn't agree with them. How democratic is that?