The added seats for Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario are long overdue, there is simply no rational reason to abandon this bill, obvious self interest aside. If the parties are worried about losing seats in Quebec, then fast track the changes, so the new seat gains easily offset any potential losses. That's a strategic response, but really, once and for all, it would nice for a federal party to champion basic democracy, rather than cowering at the first sign of trouble.
If this bill does die, I think it such an indictment that it might be time for federation rethink. I can just imagine the reaction in Alberta, and I can't blame for a second, it's a sellout of the highest order. I suppose the cute and quiet"die on the vine" approach will curb visceral reaction, but eventually it will sink in the west is being SCREWED once again, and this time it will be rightfully so, no question. Representation by population, growing regions having their voice suppressed to placate an increasing minority. That scenario just doesn't wash, and while you understand Quebec's concerns, this is one issue where we require leadership to do the right thing. Anything less, this almost gutless process, and you're left with the conclusion that this country, in its current makeup, just doesn't function properly, a pretty mirage that disappears with the slightest inspection.
I don't buy my party position:
Liberal Democratic Reform critic Carolyn Bennett, from Toronto, said her party was not ready to support the bill “without robust consultation with the provinces.”
“This is no way to run a federation,” she said. “Where is the consultation? Where is the first ministers’ meeting? Where is any understanding of how this country is supposed to work?”
Where is the understanding? This is just an elementary reform, it doesn't require a first ministers' meeting, all it requires is a commitment to representation by population, or at least some move closer to this reality. Why do we need to consult the provinces, when we know FULL well that those who want more will argue just that, and those whose who's percentage will decline will vehemently oppose. Sounds like a recipe for exasperating the situation, no where near a solution. We already have an entrenched Senate which handicaps certain regions, over inflates others, so the naysayers can take comfort in this non-representative body, not demand we do the same in our other house.
We already have a situation in this country where our Parliament is held hostage by people who support the nation's destruction. A now permanent fixture, no federal party has the resolve to make the case, instead it's become a who can out pander each other, with little impact anyways. This reality cemented, we now must endure further insult- no one brave enough to dare address fundamental inequalities, basically giving the west the bird, telling Ontario to once again accept compromise for the greater good, just a complete sham of a federation no matter how you slice it. Maybe it's time for a sober debate, maybe this failure tells us that the federation doesn't work and we need reform or we need a new arrangement. I'm a staunch supporter of a strong central government, but it is rendered useless when it can't mandate the most basic respresentation.
Canada doesn't work, it just doesn't. Something has to give...