Sunday, November 30, 2008

Jack Layton: he'll sleep with the Islamists, he'll sleep with the separatists

Apparently, he'll even sleep with Stephane Dion.... | NDP, Bloc in coalition talks before fiscal update: tape
The New Democrats and Bloc Quebecois held talks to form a coalition party well before the opposition's uproar over the government's fiscal update, CTV News has learned.

NDP Leader Jack Layton was in talks with Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe for a "considerable period of time," reported CTV's Ottawa Bureau Chief Robert Fife on Sunday.

Layton held a telephone-conference meeting with his caucus Saturday morning that was recorded by a Conservative member. According to the audio tape, Layton appears to take credit for the possibility of a coalition.

"Let's just say we have strategies. This whole thing would not have happened if the moves hadn't been made with the Bloc a long time ago and locked them in early," Layton says. "Because, you couldn't put three people together in one or three hours. The first part was done a long time ago."

He then goes on to say that the NDP "spotted and prepared for the opportunity and had taken the steps that were required, so that when the opportunity arose, which was when Mr. Harper made his disastrous strategic error by not providing stimulus to the economy and instead playing political games, we were able to move and things began to move very quickly."

Layton also says about the Bloc: "Nothing could be better for our country than to have 50 members who have been elected to separate Quebec...actually helping to make Canada a better place."
First of all, let's remember that Parliamentary democracy means that the government only sits at the pleasure of the House of Commons. The parties there have every right to challenge the government, and to replace it if a majority see fit. But if they do this for overwhelmingly self-interested reasons, if they don't wait for a decisive issue to emerge, they deserve to be punished by voters when they reveal, especially by way of bragging to their own caucus, that all they care about is being good power players. This is what Jack Layton has just done in revealing that he has been talking with the separatist Bloc Quebecois about overthrowing the government ever since the election and its revelation that most Canadians don't take Layton seriously when he preens about being Prime Ministerial.

The problem with electing dweebs to Ottawa, in the name of having a "strong opposition" is that they are likely to give in to their mimetic desire and not be happy with being in opposition. They want the spotlight, the bigger salaries, offices, power, the ministerial cars. They get tired of being the noble opposition, which they come to equate with being losers, and will soon enough be corrupted by the desire for power.

I recall my sister telling me during the last election a story from a neighbour. Sis lives just off the Danforth, in Toronto, in Jack Layton's riding. The neighbour tells of one day walking over to attend a Layton rally. A few blocks from the rally, an SUV pulls over and neighbor claims to see Jack exiting vehicle with his bike and proceeding to the rally to impress the green-orange worshipers.

I don't know if it's true. But I do know that my sister and her lefty-artsy friends in the riding are getting more and more sick of Jack Layton as a man and shifting votes away from the NDP. I don't know if that's a sign of anything much: Jack still managed to get himself elected. But maybe the "great" man is about to have his tragic fall. We live in a great age when pretty much any man can experience hubris.

1 comment:

Dag said...

Populism has its dangers, but one must take a stand that either people are responsible creatures who develop over time within a context of freedom or they don't. To rely on a political elite as professionals because they are professionals is to deny the right the people have to exercise the natural freedom people can have, should they choose it. Parties are efficient, but are they effective? Populist movements might mean chaos in the interim, but they also lead to Americanism: to republican democracy. Not everyone likes that. It's why we have struggles in the world. One chooses.