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If it goes against principles, vote against it

I agree with Jeff and Steve: If the budget goes against Liberal ideals and we think it’s a bad budget for the country, it had better be voted down en masse by Liberals in their seats, there better not be a weak-kneed mass of absent Liberal MP’s from their seats, and we better be going to an election if the other opposition parties don’t like it either. Otherwise, the “Liberals are weak with no principles” theme is really going to be played out in the media and the public’s mind.

As for the argument there aren’t winning conditions, a) Harper didn’t have “winning conditions” when he brought down the Martin government, and b) I continue to argue that the Conservatives will be in a lot better position to win after their next Spring Budget; they’ll just try to do what they did last Spring. It didn’t work out for them then, but you never give an opponent a second chance. I agree with Jeff that Bryan Wilfert and Jason Cherniak are wrong in asking for what is tantamount to appeasement of the Conservatives and giving the Conservatives free rein for the next several months and the chance to build up to their Spring Budget.

Update: This Liberal Blogger also thinks Mr. Wilfert’s idea is a bad one. Woman At Mile 0 also calls for an election and not to pass ” a crummy Throne Speech”.

Update 2: And yet another Liberal blogger comes out against the idea of doing the capitulation… er… opposing the Throne Speech by abstaining strategy.  You know, If this idea goes thru, and our MP’s do this.. I may just steal a line from our blogging friends down south who are frustrated with the Democrats in the Congress, and start calling this group “The Capitulating Caucus”.


6 comments to If it goes against principles, vote against it

  • kursk

    Don’t let the door hit you on the way out Annie..

    Regardless of political stripe, there is nothing the conservatives or liberals might do that should make you ashamed of your country..

    Seems to me that talk like that is born of the hubris many have when ascribing liberal values as Canadian values…they are not the same thing no matter how many times you repeat the mantra..

  • You posted this at my site too, and I have the same response:  Thanks for a bunch of examples from minority governments, with a few forced on them by the courts and a few that were almost completely cosmetic.

    I repeat, are you trying to make my point for me?

  • Cliff – Good point. The only ones that I can think of off the top of my head are the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Medicare, Canada’s founding role with the United Nations, ratifying the Kyoto Protocol, the Kelowna accord, the creation of the Supreme Court of Canada, establishment of a Department of Labour, public pensions, unemployment insurance, first woman in the Senate, first woman to head a senate standing committee, an extensive social security program, a re-establishment plan for the benefit of servicemen, the establishment of the Industrial Development Bank to provide credit for small business, the National Housing Act, the Farm Improvement Loans Act, old age pension legislation without a means test, old age assistance, allowances for the blind, extension of health grants, enactment of the Disabled Persons Act, the appointment of the Royal Commission on the Arts Letters and Sciences, the establishment of a municipal loan fund and an Atlantic provinces capital assistance fund, expansion of welfare services, the Old Age Security Act, the Canada Pension Plan, the Guaranteed Income Supplement, the Canada Assistance Plan, Official Languages Act, Multiculturalism policy, the Department of Regional Economic Expansion, the Anti-Inflation Board, introduction of the spouse’s allowance under the Old Age Security Act, the Canada Works scheme, the Young Canada Works Program, the Human Rights Act, the abolishment of capital punishment, the televising of all the proceedings of the House of Commons, the creation of a national oil company, the Canadian Home Insulation Program, the 6 & 5 program, appointment of the first woman Speaker of the House of Commons, the appointment of the first woman justice on the Supreme Court of Canada, the peace initiative for arms control and disarmament, the appointment of the first female Governor General, restoring funding for literacy programs, the creation of a prenatal nutrition program, the Child Tax Benefit, a National AIDS Strategy, an aboriginal healing fund, the Canada Millenium Scholarship Foundation, the $500-million cultural investment agenda under the Department of Canadian Heritage called “Tomorrow Starts Today”, being the first country to sign and ratify the Ottawa Convention – the Convention on the prohibition of the use and transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines, our instrumental role in establishing the International Criminal Court, the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), the forgivement of the debts of some of the most heavily indebted countries, the decision not to participate in the U.S.-led war in Iraq, the Species at Risk Act, the Canada National Parks Act, the amendment to the patent act and the food and drugs act to give many developing countries easier access to pharmaceutical products needed to combat HIV/AIDS and other public health problems, Project Green, a $5 billion investment to begin the creation of a national system of quality Early Learning and Child Care, and the $5 billion investment to preserve the natural environment and to address climate change, the $2.7 billion increase in the Guaranteed Income Supplement, the $3.4 billion in increased international assistance, legislation to speed up the provision of low-cost AIDS/HIV medication to African countries, and a comprehensive charter for Canada’s veterans.

  • What ‘Liberal ideals’?

    I’m not just being a smart-ass here, well not entirely, but I issued a challenge on my blog that nobody has been able to answer:

     ‘Name any progressive social or economic policy –deeds not words– by a federal Liberal government that wasn’t forced on them by the courts or a minority government position.’

    More and more Canadians – most dangerously for the Liberal Party, in Quebec – are asking what’s the real difference is between the Conservatives and the Liberals aside from a slightly hipper rap?

    I promise not to break into a chorus of  ‘Liberal, Tory, same old story.’ but explain to me the advantage to ordinary working Canadians of voting for the party that gutted and looted Unemployment Insurance, betrayed workers on the Anti-Scab law based on the knowing lie of a threat to essential services, kept the Free Trade Agreement that has murdered our manufacturing sector after campaigning against it, paid lip service to Kyoto while totally abandoning any leadership on actually achieving its goals, kept the regressive GST after promising to kill it and who’s biggest criticism of the Conservatives on the economics file is that they haven’t sucked up to big business enough, in re: Income Trusts.

    Would I rather see a minority Liberal government than a minority Conservative one?  Sure, if they were more realistic than Martin’s was, but if the choice is minority Conservative or majority Liberal – then the only difference I can see is that some control can be exerted over a minority- so that’s what I would choose.

    Talking like progressives and legislating like conservatives just wont cut it anymore, it’s actually kind of sad that Canadians fell for it as long as we did.

  • I think , I do not know what to think when it is said that Dion is not well liked  in Quebec, and Harper with all his faults on the environment and Afghanistan, that Quebec is worried about, does not matter —-they received a great amout of money to buy them. Quebec seats could mean a majority for Harper and a country we do not want to belong to.
     Do they know Dion, enough in the rest of the country ?

  • Lord Kitchener's Own

    Gotta say, I really agree on this one.

    After recent talk of our new War on Drugs, I’m about ready for an election.

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