ECOSPECTIVE: Conflict defines a nation grown through cooperation


Daniel O’Neail
Well I’m back, but with the political situation in Canada right now I don’t know for how long.

I took an extra month off of writing following the Federal election to reacquaint myself with my family and with myself, but the issues in our community and country will not wait on our leisure.

While I usually write on more local issues, with the amount of rhetoric and misinformation flying around our current Government crisis, I feel it necessary to address it.

A nation is grown by cooperation, but is defined by conflict.

The issues as presented are that the Canadian people chose this Prime Minister – that we voted him in. This is incorrect, our electoral system does not allow the voters to chose a Prime Minister, of the 308 different ballots, Stephen Harper’s name only appeared on one. The voters only get to chose a Member of Parliament, and expect them to work together with the other MP’s to govern this nation. The office of Prime Minister goes to the MP that the majority of the house is willing to recognize and the Governor General approves.

Being the leader of the party with the most seats does not make you Prime Minister. In fact the leader of the party may not get elected at all and a Prime Minister would have to be chosen from the elected MP’s if no one was willing to resign and give the leader a seat.

Calling the current coalition a Coup d’état or unconstitutional is also incorrect.

A coup is when a small group, usually a section of the military, overthrows a government and usually involves violence. This Canadian coalition has the support of the majority of elected MP’s and has as much validity as any of the other parliamentary coalitions that have served their nations in the past.

Mr. Harper’s claim in his English national address implied that a coalition is an invalid form of governing, completely ignoring the fact that one of the most famous leaders in the world, Winston Churchill, was Prime Minister of a coalition government, or perhaps our Prime Minister disapproved of that as well since they were responsible for overthrowing another fascist government.

Okay, fine, I am getting into my own rhetoric, but when the Conservative government’s solution to a world wide economic slow down is to destroy the opposition parties, that sounds like someone attempting to create a one-party state. Instead of removing this $1.75 funding why not remove the 75 per cent tax rebate from political donations? Because the Conservatives get most of their political funding from public donations, and only 37 per cent from the fund they are trying to eliminate.

Other parties count on the fund Harper wanted to remove: NDP, 57 per cent; Green Party, 65 per cent; the Bloc, 86 per cent.

Removing 87 per cent of a rivals’ funding will not create jobs, it will just remove those party voices from Government.

Since we are talking about the Bloc, let’s address the Prime Minister’s address regarding that party.

Harper said: “The opposition does not have the democratic right to impose a coalition with the separatists” and “Canada’s government cannot enter into a power-sharing coalition with a separatist party.”

So does this imply that the Bloc has no voice in Parliament? It has been implied they would have too much power as the swing vote with a Coalition, but if there is no Coalition, and the Liberal’s and NDP vote against a Conservative motion, the Bloc still has the swing vote.

Unless the Prime Minister is going to refuse to accept support from the party that he depended on for their votes 140 times, according to Ralph Goodale, and now demonizes as the greatest threat to unity.

This Prime Minister has set back national unity 30 years this past week with this Them vs. Us strategy.

Lastly, let’s look at the results.

The Prime Minister calls the Bloc, NDP and Liberal’s showing they can work together and agree on something undemocratic. He claims that when the majority of the Member’s of Parliament are going to vote against him it’s unconstitutional. As a result he goes to the Governor General to ask for an unprecedented recess, while his party roles out the propaganda machine to imply that having political parties working together is evil.

In short, people are losing their jobs all across this country, our government, instead of addressing the problem, is suspended just so the Prime Minister gets to keep his.

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