About the Blog:

Guelph Politico is locally sourced and dedicated to covering the political and cultural scene in the City of Guelph. Est. 2008.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day One: Lies and the Lying Liars That Accuse Each Other of Telling Them

At least it didn't take long for this campaign to go negative. The Federal Election is barely 24 hours old and the accusations and tongue-lashings have been flying so fast and furious that the decision as to who the next government should be will probably come down to a "Yo Mama" contest. "Yo Mama's so dumb, she thinks 'Parliamentary Censure' is a disco band from the 70s." "Yo Mama's so fat, she counts as her own riding." And so on.
The wedge, in lieu of any actual issues this election, seems to be about the possibility of a coalition government. Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff hit the stump running by issuing a declaration that if the Harper Government is again elected with a minority, he will not seek out a coalition with the Bloc Quebecois and the NDP. Bone-headed a decision that may be to rule it out completely, Stephen Harper saw a chance to attack. “Imagine a coalition of arch-centralists and Quebec sovereigntists trying to work together. The only thing they'll be able to agree on is to spend more money and to raise taxes to pay for it,” he told supporters at a campaign stop.
Still, Ignatieff called a coalition "a legitimate constitutional option,"and said of Harper that he's "fabricating lies about an impending coalition, something he knows is false?”
Meanwhile Gilles Duceppe, never one to let attack politics happen without him, said that Harper "did everything to provoke an election,''and that "The Conservative leader wants to impose his ideology without bounds." Then he showed his ace-in-the-hole: a 2004 letter signed by Harper, NDP leader Jack Layton and himself, addressed to then-governor general Adrienne Clarkson, discussing the possibility of the three opposition leaders proposed a coalition government if Paul Martin's Liberal minority government lost a confidence vote.
I remember the coalition showdown in 2008, and the arguments against came down to a "You can't do that mentality" with arguments about the undemocraticness of it trumping the fact that it is perfectly lawful according to our constitution and the traditions of a parliamentary democracy. In my mind, after three consecutive minority governments and the strong possibility of a fourth, a lot of Canadians are voting for a coalition government to begin with. If only our politicians could act like grown ups and see it that way.
As for locally, I had cause for concern about the rancor of the electorate this morning. As I walked downtown. on the corner of Edinburgh and Paisley I saw a smashed Marty Burke sign on the Northeast corner. Is this is the tone being set just one day into the election? Then again, perhaps this was just a drunken statement in favour of smashing things. On second thought, maybe its both one and the same. 
This is going to be a long election season.

1 comment:

Bryan said...

It looks like Marty Burke was first past the post in terms of getting all that expensive signage out there --I saw his signs blanketing the city before anyone else's --so maybe it was just a sacrificial thing? An offering to Dionysus to get the campaign off to a good pagan start?