Saturday, December 03, 2005

Why a Harper gov't is Duceppe's wet dream

POGGE postulated the other day on the scenario of a minority Harper government, which opened up an excellent discussion, well worth checking out. I tried to comment twice there, but neither were accepted for some reason. So here's my take.

A Harper Conservative government would be a death-knell for the federal cause, partly because he burned his bridges with Quebeckers over Same-Sex Marriage; partly because he is too far to the right for us, and won't budge on anything substantial policy-wise, even for the Quebec wing of his own party:
Quebec delegates at the convention expressed dismay over the rejection of same-sex marriage and the Kyoto Accord, and the fact Mr. Harper vowed to restart talks on missile defence with the U.S. -- all policy positions that have little traction in Quebec.

Hasn't anyone noticed he has virtually no support here and little hope of electing even a single MP from this province? He didn't even care to introduce any of them to the media. One wonders if he even knows any of their names!

Layton has the same problem (support-wise) but has a better shot of being accepted here because his priorities and the BQ's are almost identical, save for the sovereignty issue. Also, the french media tends to pay the NDP short shrift, making it even more difficult for Layton to make any inroads here, despite being a native of Montreal with decent french himself.

That leaves the Liberals, so we'll just have to see if Quebeckers' feelings are still as hurt next month as they were in 2004.

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11 comments:

DazzlinDino said...

almost the entire of Deuceppes' campaign is resting on Adscam, the WORST thing that could happen is the Liberal getting back into power. Quebec has no faith in the Liberal government, and will try to force an illegal referendum if the Liberals are voted into power. Harper has made his teams stand quite clear on unity, and has stated many times that he will work with Quebec to try to ease tensions between the Provincial and Federal governments.

That being said, the Liberals are the only ones with an actual section of their policy covering the Quebec issue and the french language, but I am unsure if this is honest politics or pandering.

Quebec separation is a "time will tell" issue that's a hard one to call. I don't think an accurate prediction can be made on this one, as is seen in the polls, views in Quebec change almost daily. It's sure fun to hypothisize about though....

DazzlinDino said...

P.S...it's sure nice to find a Lib site that isn't "trollish" like MyBlahg or Liberal for Life....

Scott in Montreal said...

Goodness! Thanks for the compliment, but this is not a Lib site! I am not affiliated with any party.

Anyway, I guess you really have to live here and pay a little attention to the french media to get an idea of what a joke the CPC is to Quebeckers. It is seen as a rump party for Western interests that cares not a whit for anything besides pushing a pro-Bush anti-Quebec agenda that would lead us into dark corners peace-loving people abhor. I'm not saying that's necessarily an accurate description (although I don't think it's too far off), just the perception. Harper has a record of making unwise comments that cement this opinion.

In particular: "Because (the SSM bill) is being passed with the support of the Bloc, I think it will lack legitimacy with most Canadians. The truth is most federalist MPs oppose this."

You can't hear that and not think he feels the BQ members' votes are illegitimate. And they were voting on behalf of their constituents. So Duceppe can easily paint the CPC as a bunch of bitter, xenophobic Westerners who, having made a hostile take-over of the PC party, now want to undo any Quebec influence on where the country is going. That makes independence seem necessary. The Adscam hurt because we were taken as chumps and made to look like a bunch of corrupt bums.

No wonder 10 to 20 percent of the people who would never vote Yes in a referendum still choose to support the BQ. They can be counted on to take our interests to heart and give us a voice. Still, I won't vote for them because separation would be a foolish escapade, and disastrous for us all.

Scott in Montreal said...

Also, Martin was pro-Meech Lake and used to be very popular here. That's why they're calling themselves the "Martin Liberals" - to distance themselves from Chretien, who was never well-liked because he couldn't talk either language eloquently, and was thuggish. No, if Martin can convince people Adscam was the other guy's fault (we want to believe that anyway), enough hearts might melt for him to give him a couple dozen ridings here, but I think he'll have to start campaigning a lot better than this week.

And grovel. He must grovel. Grovel grovel plead plead grovel.

The thing is, Quebeckers do look hard at policy as well. And the Libs are more in line with what the majority of Quebeckers are looking for.

DazzlinDino said...

Agreed on the grovelling, and sorry for calling you a Liberal.....lol....The BQ have some of the best policies on the planet, their healthcare is way above country average, maybe Martin and Harper should listen to Deuceppe a little harder....

Scott in Montreal said...

Apology accepted Dazz. And if you're wondering how the french Quebec media reacted to Harper's first campaign stop here (where he introduced, so to speak, his Quebec candidates), here is a partial summary of an opinion in the highest circulation daily in the province [per The Gazette's Philipe Authier]:

...Harper is using a teleprompter to spin off his lines in the campaign and the impression was that the Conservatives were in their own little world, as opposed to Quebec City.

As Journal de Montreal political columnist Michel C. Auger pointed out Thursday: "We could have been anywhere in Canada. The Conservative bubble seemed to have landed (in Quebec City) by accident. And the local candidates were as interchangeable as potted plants."

CathiefromCanada said...

Interesting discussion. I am really, really hoping that Martin can get 10 or 15 of the BQ seats back this election -- I think it may be the only thing that will save his government and prevent a Harper government. I just hope Quebec is enough "over" Adscam to trust Martin again (though it would not surprise me if they're not -- it was pretty insulting.)

DazzlinDino said...

Even Jack is using the new, "heads up display" teleprompter instead of reading from a typed sheet, I thought they were pretty cool actually, but I'm a bit of a techy. Drives my wife nuts, I refuse to throw out a monitor...

DazzlinDino said...

In fact, if you want to really rejuvinate your screen, there is a great little on-line program, and it's self running. It really cleans the picture up nicely. Go check it out, it can be found HERE.

Paulineee said...

If you are only being heard half the time, just yell twice as loud.

Cool blog, I'll be back when I achieve consciousness.

Scott in BC said...

There are so many great blogs with passionate opinions and this one is very good and is about to go into my favorites. Keep up the good work. Scott from BC