Sunday, February 25, 2007

Quebec Election Translator

Linguistic gymnastics at its finest:

a PQ government "resolves to hold a popular consultation on sovereignty as soon as possible within its first mandate."
Translation- Given the polling, we dropped the word referendum and replaced it with ambigious language to secure the soft nationalist vote. This is really an admission that we can't win a referendum, but will continue on with our single-minded focus. You all know how we feel about "clarity".

Mario Dumont, leader of the third-place Action democratique du Quebec, spoke to supporters about political and financial "autonomy" for Quebec, rather than separation.
Translation- I'm trying to have to both ways, even though political and financial automony constitutes sovereignty. My hypocrisy and hopeless logic knows no bounds.

sovereigntist platform, released over the weekend, for suggesting that the federal payments would continue while Quebec makes the transition from a province to a country in the aftermath of a yes vote in a referendum.
Translation- The rest of Canada lives in a coma, while we rape the coffers at our leisure. You can have your cake and eat it too. Utopia does exist, and the nature of man is always generous. Sovereignty comes without consequences, no really. Heaven on earth is at hand.

I can't wait for the debates.


Canadian Tar Heel said...

I think I actually laughed when I read this post. Nice translation. In contrast, I think my BS detector has been busted lately.

Monkey Loves to Fight said...

I don't think this will help Boisclair since he just looks like a hypocritical flip flopper. Already the federalists are going Liberal, the soft nationalist are mostly going ADQ (on the right) and Quebec Solidaire (on the left) while the separtist are going PQ.

Drew Adamick said...

Why can't Canada just tell les quebecois that if they want independence/sovereignty/sov-association/whatever that they have to pay for it themselves- and not expect the rest of Canada to help them out with anything. Why should we fork over our cash to Quebec if they do "separate"?

IslandLiberal said...

We won't give them anything if they separate. Like most of the assumptions that separatists make about how separation will work, it's completely fantastical.

ottlib said...

Lucien Bouchard almost sold Quebecers on the notion that separation would be painless despite a concerted effort to show otherwise.

Even now many Quebecers still believe that a separate Quebec will still enjoy the benefits of being part of Canada while also enjoying the benefits of being a separate country.

Do not underestimate the capacity of Quebecers to believe in the PQ's fairy tales.

Unfortunately for Canada and Quebec the debate during the Quebec election will probably degenerate into bashing Canada and/or the Federal Government. The PQ because it needs to energize its base and the Charest Liberals because they cannot have this campaign become about good government and good governance. They failed on both counts, which is why over 60% of Quebecers want a change in government.

Monkey Loves to Fight said...

I think it would be good if all federalist leaders in the event of a PQ win laid what a separate Quebec would entail. I am all for giving transfers to Quebec as long as they are part of Canada, but the moment they separate, they will be treated like any other sovereign country. Unless they become so poor that they qualify for foreign aid they can forget about any transfers from Canada.

Transfer payments work on the principle you pay into the system, but that they are transferred based on population of province not its wealth so that is why Quebec gets more than it gives.

Another thing is most separtist actually believe Quebec pays more to be part of Canada then it gets in return.

Steve V said...

Remember how Bouchard reacted with hurt and a sense of rejection after the constitutional failures. People need to understand that this genuine reaction is exactly the way the rest of Canada would react to a seperate Quebec state. To think anyone would be in the mood for congenial seperation, that naked self-interest wouldn't be rampant, even a touch of irrational hysterics, has no understanding of history and/or human nature. It would be messy, and people play dangerous games when they offer idealist views of what is essentially a divorce.

As an aside, I don't like the term "them", it suggests other and I see far more that binds us than makes us different. The problem with Canadians, everyone is consumed with uniqueness, what defines them, a tribal mentality. The irony, on the world stage, Canada's greatest contribution is the perception that it is a meeting place, where all cultures are welcome and accepted. If Canada fails, whether it be Alberta or Quebec, it really is a failure of tolerance and human cohesion, that sets a bad precedent for future prospects.

Monkey Loves to Fight said...

Steve - I don't see Quebecers as them, but rather the separtist as them.

There is no doubt some Quebecers do feel they've been mistreated which they have been, but still that doesn't change the fact you are either part of Canada or not, you cannot be half in and half out.

Certainly we need to focus on what binds us while at the same time appreciate our differences since I see our differences as a sign of strength rather than weakness.

Steve V said...

"I see our differences as a sign of strength rather than weakness."

Agreed. BTW, I wasn't referring to you with the "them" comment.

Scotian said...

"To think anyone would be in the mood for congenial seperation, that naked self-interest wouldn't be rampant, even a touch of irrational hysterics, has no understanding of history and/or human nature. It would be messy, and people play dangerous games when they offer idealist views of what is essentially a divorce."

Steve V

This is something that has driven me nuts for a quarter century now, the eat your cake and have it mentality the separatists appear to believe will work for them. If they try to separate there will be many hard feelings, indeed there will be nearly 2 million Canadian citizens cut off from the rest of Canada by the act that will be *VERY* emotionally charged, I can guarantee that! One of the reasons I get so angered by westerners is when they claim that "let Quebec go, it won't matter to the rest of Canada" (as in their side of the country) they are ignoring (treating us as if we do not exist/matter) the 2 million of us in the Atlantic Provinces that will have been physically separated from Canada by such an action with no idea what kind of transportation links and costs will impede our ability to trade with the rest of the country.

That alone should be more than enough for these fools to realize separation will not be clean, will not be painless, and will not be done in a calm, reasoned manner. There will be many Canadians fearful and upset for their future and their children's future in my region alone, and I somehow suspect that at least some of the rest of the country will also be less than pleased with the state of affairs Quebec separation would engender. I certainly doubt they would become members of NAFTA easily, indeed I can see Canada blocking them as revenge without difficulty why don't the separatists?

Anyways, I can rant on this particular topic for a long time, as I have been alive throughout the separatist movement and have a mother from Quebec who followed the evolution of that movement fairly closely (and with no small amount of disgust for the way they branded folks like her as non Quebecois despite her being born and raised there). I have also watched the economic damages the threat of Quebec separation has done to the Atlantic region in that period. So I tend to be a bit irate over the topic and the attitude of the Separatists that it will be so clean, easy and peaceful. I Don't THINK So!

Steve V said...


Someone really needs to layout some of the consequences. I know there is a danger in enflaming tensions, but there is a lack of realism in the debate. What the heck is Dumont talking about? The BQ lives in a fantasyland.

Canada would annex any region that wants to stay within Canada, areas like Gatineau, the Cree lands, anything, once self-interest is king. The navy would take control of the St. Lawrence, the army infastructure would leave (Chretien already had plans in the event of just a YES vote) and the money would cease. Assets would be seized, under the guise of debt responsibility, and capital would flee in quick order. To paint seperation as anything less than DEVASTATING in the short term is intellectually dishonest. It would be a mess that people can't really even fathom, it would be uglier than anyone would imagine. The entire situation would deteriorate, tempers would flare and the irrational would be common. To argue that everyone would sit calmly around a table show no relationship to reality.