Saturday, September 26, 2009

Some Thoughts on Layton Propping Up the Government

For seven months this year, the Liberals propped up the government. Ignatieff killed the coalition and then kept Harper's government alive. Layton made great hay of that, keeping count of the votes and gloating in speeches about it.

Now Ignatieff has forced Layton to be the one propping up the government. (Cool move, Iggles!) Some Liberals seem to want to start banging on Jack in the same way he banged on us.

Truth be told, neither situation was so bad. It's just how it goes during minority governments. We can't have an election after every vote.

It was different in 2006, when Layton actively got Harper elected by his behavior during the election campaign: alleging a phony Liberal scandal and getting the RCMP involved, as well as disproportionately attacking the Liberals while giving the Conservatives a free ride. That was worth calling him on. This, not so much. Layton made a fool of himself and I don't think anyone has missed the irony, but we don't need to repeat his poor behavior.

Even more ironically, while Ignatieff was propping up the Conservatives, the Conservative were hollering that Ignatieff is a power-hungry psychopath who would do anything to grab power immediately; and they were running around hollering that Ignatieff was in league with the socialists and separatists... the same socialists and separatists who are now propping them up. But then, the Conservative hate machine doesn't give a fig for truth.

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19 comments:

Anonymous said...

With the Conservatives holding a 14 point lead in Ontario the only thing between the Conservatives and a majority is the NDP. The Liberals should have went in the spring when the NDP wanted too. Someone is making the right decision and someone is making the wrong one.

Yappa said...

You make a good point, but I still disagree. ;-) I don't like to see the Liberals and NDP fighting against each other. For years now the NDP has adopted a strategy of targeting the Liberals (instead of the Cons) in the hopes of pickign off some fringe voters. But that means that they nitpick and raise bogus issues rather than talking about the main, important issues: the things that divide both parties from the Conservatives. If we stopped all this sibling rivalry we might find a way to work out the current political situation - like a more sellable Lib-NDP coalition. Or something.

leftdog said...

You wrote, "It was different in 2004, when Layton actively got Harper elected by his behavior during the election campaign: alleging a phony Liberal scandal and getting the RCMP involved" HUH? The Liberals won the 2004 Election! Your facts are completely wrong in this post.

As for what you call "alleging a phony Liberal scandal" .. it seems to me that there was nothing phony about Adscam and other Liberal activities!

Did it ever dawn on you that one day the Liberals 'may' form a minority in this country and you will be wanting New Democrats to 'prop' you up?

Get back to attacking Tories ... Liberals are completely out of whack with the people and it may be a good start to go after Harper!

Yappa said...

Hey leftdog -

sorry I got the election year wrong. There have been so many elections! I meant 2006. (I may go back into the article and fix that.) The phony scandal during the campaign was not adscam - it had to do with an alleged budget leak.

Re your anger at what you think I'm saying, we're in agreement. I am a Liberal, but I want to see better relations between the NDP and Liberal parties... not for any Liberal gain, but because we agree on almost everything.

Sheesh, you're going to pop a blood vessel if THIS post gets you THAT mad. ;-)

Dylan said...

Yappa, don't take Leftdog's unqualified outrage personally. It's not you, it's just that you had the audacity to challenge the NDP.

Anonymous said...

The NDP and the Liberals do not agree on almost everything. There are some really BIG issues we don't agree on and which the NDP have been right on. Afghanistan comes to mind right now, but if the Liberals in power I say as a fact there would be a bout load more. Fact is the Liberal Party is closer to the Conservative party when in power then the NDP. They just have a different story when out of power.

Yappa said...

Hi Anonyomous -

Your criticism of the Liberals is exactly the reason why I support them. They are the only party in Canada who is trying to be fiscally responsible and socially progressive. It's a balance which they can never get right, because there's never enough money for everything, but they're the only party that's even trying.

The far-rightness of the Liberal party has been much exagerrated. For example, Chretien's record on the environment - he should have done more, but he wasn't nearly as bad as he's made out to be. He signed Kyoto and he presided over great improvements in anti-pollution technology in manufacturing... but emissions zoomed up mostly because of the Alberta tar sands, which he simply couldn't do much about. Plus, Ontario manufacturing really took off in the 90s, leading to higher emisssions even though the average emissions were much lower.

(I don't mean to claim that the NDP haven't done good things too. The NDP has a long tradition of pushing progressive policies and has been a great asset to this country.)

I want the Liberals to be more on the left, which is why I supported Bob Rae for leader and why, this week, I'm very glad that Couchon got the nomination in Montreal (he was the justice minister who brought in same-sex marriage). But when in power, I also want the Liberals to run the country for everyone and not just for their base; and I want them to be pragmatic rather than ideological.

Having said all that, although Iggy appears to be moving us to the right, I think he is the best candidate for PM because he has the ability to do something about our unity problems. I don't see anyone else (well, other than Bob Rae, but I've already written a thousand posts supporting him) with the grasp of context and issues who can do that... and Canada is sorely in need of that.

Anonymous said...

Afghanistan is fiscally responsible and socially progressive? Could have fooled me. Bill C-10 which the Liberals voted for and which is a direct attack on women in fiscally responsible and socially progressive? Could have fooled me. Bill c-15 which the Liberals voted for and would create mandatory minims for drug crimes is fiscally responsible and socially progressive? Could have fooled me.

Don't buy the spin. The Ignatieff Liberals are an extension of the Conservative party.

the regina mom said...

There's a very good piece in the Chronicle Herald, one which challenges the dominant narrative on the NDP's role in Canadian politics. And, better still, it critiques the dominant media for its focus on "breaking news" over real news. Well worth the read, imnsho!

austin said...

I think your all missing the point here, nobody really cares about the NDP they are a fringe party and always will be. The Bloc gets more seats then they do.

Anonymous said...

Marginalizing the NDP is what got Martin in trouble.

Yappa said...

The NDP got 18% of the popular vote in the last election. The Bloc got 10%. The bloc got more seats because they only ran in Quebec.

Anonymous said...

But for better or worse Austin is right, the NDP IS a fringe party. Maybe we wish it wasn't so, but it is. They can be spoilers in some ridings and that's it. They are important because there is always the possibility that people who vote for them might shift over to the Liberals, and if a few do the Conservatives are dead in the water.

tom s. said...

Iggles?!

Tomm said...

The NDP don't have to be a fringe party nationally. They just need to elect a leader that isn't knee jerk anti-capitalist. Someone with the range and issues of Stoffer, Dion or even Cauchon for that matter.

They've got to re-align themselves slightly and they will no longer have a glass ceiling.

They also have the staunchest policies on caucus solidarity. This hurts them quite a bit. When they propose something wildly left wing, Canadian's want to see a Peter Stoffer be allowed to stand up and have a different voice. It would breathe new life into the party.

Yappa said...

Hi Tom!

Iggles... good name, eh? I was getting tired of "the Count." I use Iggy sometimes but it only seems appropriate for "everyday". I read a Conservative blog today that called him "Mr. HypocrIggy" (which, let's face it, is pretty good) and Rick Salutin recently called him Narcissieff. I don't know why the Igster just seems to require a nickname... maybe it's those crazy eyebrows!

Bert said...

Wow, Yappa. I agree with you.......
(about Count Iggy needing a nickname) AND about the eyebrows.

leftdog said...

I've grown partial to 'Iffy'.

Yappa said...

Iffy is good... I hadn't heard that one. ;-)