Stephen Harper just made an uncharacteristic political blunder this week. Yesterday, Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced that as part of their upcoming economic program they were going cut public financing of political parties, ostensibly due to the economic woes currently smack-downing the planet. Even though it was clear to anybody with an IQ of a carrot that this was simply an attempt to financially undermine the opposition, Harper figured they didn’t have the cahones to call another election so soon after the previous one – just two months ago. Hell, that one was unpopular enough.
But it all went terribly, terribly wrong. The NDP, Liberals and Bloc Quebecois called the Conservative’s bluff and are now in discussions to form a coalition to depose the government. Nobody seems sure about what sort of structure this thing would take, but presumably Dion – the only leader with federal party pretensions – would take the helm in one form or other. Or perhaps Ignatieff or Rae would be permitted to step up on behalf of their party.
Harper, fearful of a no-confidence motion being passed today, managed to delay the sessions in which it could be registered. A few thoughts:
- First off: Haaha in your FACE, Harper!
- When even right-wing propagandist rags like the National Post place the blame for this on the Conservatives, you know they’ve overreached.
- Harper’s need to destroy his opponents has apparently undermined his judgement. Despite his overwhelming asshole-ness, he’s a political animal, and mistakes are few and far between.
- The Liberals have a duty to Canada to get their sodding act together, pick a new leader (NOW! Not next May!) and rally behind him/her – and on that score, they should pick Ignatieff. He’s a smart man, despite his leanings to the right. Plus he’s a leader, something which has been conspicuously absent from their party for some time. Inevitably I think he’ll drive the Liberals further to the right, but I’m not convinced that’s a bad thing: it’ll dilute the right-wing vote and drive the more reasonable of us to vote NDP.
So what to watch out for in the coming days?
- Will Harper stubbornly refuse to change his position?
- Will Harper finally, finally realize that it’s in everyone’s best interest to try to play well with others? Or will politics continue to trump the interests of the country?
- Will the other parties decide enough is enough and push ahead with the coalition?
- If the coalition goes ahead, with the Governor General allow it or call another election?
- Will someone, anyone, please, stick Stephen Harper’s head in a toilet and flush?
My personal theory is that in the coming days we’ll find out what Harper really planned to do the $30 million saved: he was going to build a giant spaceship, to be filled with all the Liberal, NDP and Bloc MPs and fired directly into the heart of the sun. If Harper would be willing to include seats for himself and his party, I wholly advocate such use of my tax dollars.