Sunday, December 14, 2008
Why the Coalition is the Only Rational Choice
Was it the magic moment when the centre-left finally united to say YES WE CAN ? Or just a ghostly mirage frozen in a time of hope? Is the Coalition for Change the weapon that will bludgeon Stephen Harper out of power?
Or is it, as Steve V from Far and Wide seems to think, a monstrous mutant creature whose deadly embrace is threatening to drag us a ALL...especially the New/Nouveau Liberal Party.... into The Abyss? *Shudder*
I think it's important to separate personal want from rational thought. If confronted with clear evidence that rejects a concept, it is far more astute to incorporate that knowledge and react accordingly, rather than to pretend it doesn't exist or put one's faith in the unlikely possibility of seismic change.
In other words run for your lives !!!!!!!
Now I have a lot of respect for Steve. No blogger on our side spends more time poring over polls, like the ancient soothsayers used to rummage through goat guts. But I'm afraid to say that this time he's dead wrong.
The brutal political reality is that Coalition for Change is not only the best and the quickest way to end Stephen Harper's foul Con regime, whose ideological straitjacket and dirty political games are leading us to disaster in a time of crisis.
It's the ONLY way to do that without an election, that the progressive parties can't afford, and neither can the country.
Firstly forget about polls like this one. That frame their questions this way:
"....because of the severe economic situation the country faces and the fact the Liberals and NDP have entered into an 'unholy' deal with the Bloc separatists."
They just play to the barrage of misleading Con radio ads that panicked some Canadians into believing the Evil Separatists were staging a coup d'etat. Or that it was a recipe for the break up of Canada.
The Coalition wasn't able to counter that Con propaganda then, now it can. The three leaders can face the cameras together, explain the role of the Bloc, and tell Canadians in a calm reasoned manner why they alone can offer the kind of stable government the country need in a time of crisis.
And besides times change, recessions deepen. Harper will present his budget a week after Obama becomes President. The celebration of change will be in the air. If Ignatieff's polls can rise. So can the Coalitions. If all three leaders get out there and sell the Coalition effectively...... instead of running away from it.
Secondly, and most importantly, if the government should fall over the budget, it is almost certain that the Governor General will offer the Coalition a chance to form a government. And for her polls don't count. And neither does what's in the budget.
Her only duty is to determine whether the government enjoys the confidence of the house, and then decide whether to allow an election...or call on another political formation that can form a STABLE government.
Since Parliament has only sat for TWO weeks, and an election so soon would only mean more instability in a time of crisis, and only the Coalition can offer the stability of a government that cannot be defeated from one day to another like the Cons can, her choice will be obvious.
Even if she hasn't read Paul Wells.
The whole point of the fall election, we were told, was to give Harper some “open water” to govern without having to worry the opposition would do anything nasty, such as opposing him. The whole point. Certainty vs. chaos. Steady hand vs. the deluge. The voters granted him, for the second time, the awesome gift of power; he used it to steer a straight line away from open water into chaos and deluge, like some mad Ahab of parliamentary mischief.
Harper knows that he stands to lose everything. She told him. That's why he is trying to drive a wedge into the Coalition by luring Ignatieff into holding separate talks. So he can divide and conquer. Or argue that no serious alternative exists because one leader says one thing and another says another.
That's why he is trying to inflame sentiments in the West with his absurd Senate proposal so he can claim that removing him from office would trigger a national unity crisis.
If the Governor General stands up to him, as I believe she signalled she will, Harper's arguments will fall on deaf ears.
But for that to happen the Coalition must stay united and be prepared to govern, because it will only get ONE chance.
If the Harper government's budget is approved, the Governor General will recognize that it has the confidence of the House. And next time the government is defeated she will have no choice but to allow Harper to call an election. And he could call one ANYTIME he wants. i.e. sooner rather than later. Because let's never forget that for Great Ahab Leader the Liberal Party is his great white whale.
And if the opposition parties don't have the money to properly contest that election, the only alternative would be to let Harper govern like he had a majority. Again. And look more and more impotent. Again. Just like Dion did. Is THAT what we want?
And even in the worst case scenario, and the Governor General allowed Harper to call an election the first time, a strong Coalition would facilitate a strategic voting plan that could defeat the Cons in riding after riding. And help save money by not having to run candidates in some ridings, and backing a sure winner.
Oh I know that there are some Liberals that dream of the good old days. And believe that the arrival of Michael Ignatieff will change everything and that they can do it all by themselves. But in an increasingly balkanized country, with a fragmented left, and a Bloc and an NDP who stand to gain from the betrayal of the Coalition, how realistic is that?
We would probably end up with the same kind of Parliament we have now. And then what? And where would Ignatieff be? When if he became Prime Minister of a Coalition government, he would have a chance to show his stuff, reap the political benefits, and choose when to call an election, AFTER his party has rebuilt itself.
Never mind the hope that a coalition would bring to a country that needs it so badly. For all the above rational reasons. The Coalition still is the best and quickest way of getting rid of Stephen Harper's crazy and dangerous ideological government that is leading us all to disaster.
We need to seize the moment, present a united front, and act rationally and ruthlessly to drive these wretched Cons from power.
And whether we believe it's just a bargaining chip, or the path to a better future. At this critical time in Canadian history, everyone needs to be out there selling the Coalition.
Instead of running away from it...