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Cons. seek to cripple government

I don’t agree with much of what Toronto Star columnist Jim Travers has to say, but today’s column had me nodding in agreement. He talks about the ridiculousness of the Cons going after Elections Canada:

..Those are the same above-reproach, non-partisan folks sent abroad as a model for countries where cheating is common and results rigged…It’s not that Conservatives shouldn’t challenge an Elections Canada ruling; it’s just that they should be responsible enough not to erode another democratic cornerstone by implying dark motivation and partisan purpose.

And why are they doing this? Well, Mr. Travers points out that this isn’t new: they’ve gone after reporters, judges, the civil service, and senators, and their reason for doing this is to purposely erode their credibility with the public; to try and convince the public that government and its institutions don’t work, thus it needs to be paired down/slashed/destroyed.

The American neo-conservative Grover Norquist philosophy of making government so small that it can be drowned in a bathtub is the credo the Canadian Conservative Party are following, and is the place they are trying to get to. It is yet another reason for an election sooner rather then later to give the people of Canada that choice to see if they really want to see a federal government crippled and hobbled and unable to bring forth national programs for the benefit of all, if there arises a need for such programs, or if they want to see a progressive institution that does more then maintain an army and collect taxes, and bring forth policies for the good of all regions of Canada.

My bet is the majority of Canadians, if given that choice, will choose the latter.

15 comments to Cons. seek to cripple government

  • ted

    Clipping the power of government and handing it to the people is called “sabotage”?, I stand with those who want less taxes, and less bureaucracy. I know first hand the abusive power of a government with too much time on its hands.

  • It particularly doesnt work well when you have people in government deliberately trying to sabotage it.

    Harris was an example of that in Ontario – and we have Harper’s bunch giving an example of that in Ottawa … another very good reason to remove them from power, before they sabotage anything else.

  • sporadicus

    Quote: “The Conservatives are trying to throw our national institutions into disrepute so they can make the claim that “government doesn’t work”.”

    Newsflash: government doesn’t work, at least not very well. The difference between government and private institutions is that government can use force. Most of us don’t like being on the receiving end of force; we would rather make our own decisions about our own lives. We can use force in self-defence, and the government is supposed to back us up when necessary. That’s why we need a government. Pretty much everything else should be left to private choice. And people who like using force on others are too dangerous to be let into government.

    Ever read the Auditor-General’s reports?

  • TED

    That’s also why he’s giving away money with “tax cuts”, so the federal government can’t do any national programs if he loses power.

    Good point by Tribe. Money is always better in the hands of people, rather then a greedy federal “national program”.

    Ronald Reagan said it best, the people are far better with the dollar then the federal government.

  • Well Wilson, Steve and you can go on all they want about other parties doing this, but Elections Canada didn’t find anything wrong with any other parties spending. It’s only the Cons who are in violation of election law.

    Sure, you can charge EC with “bias” and full of Liberal moles, but other then the right-wing wackos, no one in Canada is going to give that much credence.

  • wilson

    Well, I did find this from Sept 2007. Dion’s in & out.
    A very interesting read:

    http://stevejanke.com/archives/240323.php

  • There’s a combination of factors here. Yes, there is that disdain for the mechanism of government, particularly the various elements of the civil service. Elections Canada isn’t partisan, and therefore in the conservative “all who are not with me are against me” mindset, must be liberals.

    But let’s be honest. If this is all true, they got caught blatantly cheating. Harper and his minions are scrabbling for whatever they can find. Between this, Cadman, and the other nonsense they’ve pulled, they could find themselves on the losing side of an ethics debate, and they were never prepared for that.

    Then again, they probably shoved all this under the rug with the assumption that they’d have a majority before it came out. It does make you wonder what would happen to Elections Canada under a Conservative majority.

  • wilson

    Oh, and btw,
    the MDL Ezra segment was on Brenda Martin not Elections Canada,
    Ezra was last to comment, did not talk over anyone, as James is saying.
    If he doesn’t leave up my comment, I can tell you what was said.

  • wilson

    So, Elections Canada, and CBC and a Liberal camera crew, film the serving of an ‘unannouced by law’ warrant,
    timed to coincide with the 3 Amigos meeting, for maximum embarrassment, and you and Travers think that PMSH is eroding ‘another democratic cornerstone by implying dark motivation and partisan purpose.’

    If that staged event wasn’t dark motivation and for a partisan purpose, what was it?

  • Colin

    All government seek to put their stamp on time in office.

    Conservatives like me dont like the current makeup of the country. After winning office Im happy to see some of the Liberals pet clientelles getting their wings clipped.

    After a decade of Liberals appointing Liberals a great many of these so called national institutions have become paid parking stalls for party hacks.

    And Harper is taking out the trash.

  • Ted:

    The Conservatives are trying to throw our national institutions into disrepute so they can make the claim that “government doesn’t work”.

    They can then (if they can convince the public of that) then do some dismantling of the federal government, which is what Harper wants, and has for a while. That’s also why he’s giving away money with “tax cuts”, so the federal government can’t do any national programs if he loses power.

  • ted

    The “in and out” scandal aside.
    Wow, all this Grover Norquist talk of less government. Is it not only Andrew Coyne complaining that Conservative spending is out of hand but many Liberals as well (Garth Turner). They have a point,Government has gotten bigger! Now we have Travers and Scott Tribe complain that Harper wants to cut too much. Harper can never satisfy everyone…. you can never win.

  • Postscript:
    Notice how we haven’t heard anything from the likes of Peter MacKay or any other old ‘Conservative’ on the raid and scandal?

  • Bingo WG … it’s unfortunate that most Conservatives don’t realize that their old Tory party has been hijacked by Reformers (Harper – Day – Kenney – Anders etc,) who couldn’t form a government as Reformers and did it by getting control of the steering wheel of another party. The same has happened in Saskatchewan with the now governing Saskatchewan Party.

  • Dot on, Scott, dot on. These Reformers have been screaming about this since the 80s. “Less government, less government”. That’s all they’ve ever been about. The so fervently believe that the private sector is better, that they will destroy everything public to get what they want. Talk about evil incarnate.

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