Friday, March 07, 2008

None Of The Above

Pretty inspiring stuff occuring in Ottawa, a situation all Canadians can take pride in, no matter your political stripe. A government meandering through multiple scandals, elevating certain ones, to mitigate the damage from others. A official opposition, that hides behinds curtains, surprised when people notice. Another party, who's representatives stay up all night, thinking of new ways to try and embarrass the official opposition. MP's calling others "wimps", catcalls, even frothing at the mouth. And, we wonder why average Canadians don't pay attention, can you blame them?

I would argue, that right at this exact moment, parliament is at a historic low, the discourse so juvenile, from all sides, a really shameful display. A grand achievement, given past examples, the bar was already quite low, and yet it gets worse. A gigantic disconnect between what people care about, and what our representatives give priority.

People come up with all these theories, on how we can increase voter turnout, reverse the trend to apathy. I have one suggestion, put "none of the above" on the ballot, I'm willing to bet people come out in droves, it wins in a landslide.

Anyways, back to CPAC for the riveting discourse, some more motions just introduced, something about "the Liberals wear army boots", another "showing up to vote is so 20th century" and "I'm rubber and you're glue". A nation slumbers, in the midst of irrelevance.


Anonymous said...

I completely agree. Many people don't follow all these daily details. To those who do and are not aligned with any one party, the Green party will be the beneficiary, simply because they don't have any MPs participating in this circus. However, when an election is called and issues emerge during the election, some of that protest vote will find homes in various parties. Exactly which party or parties, depends on how things unfold just prior to and during the election.

northwestern_lad said...

I don't see what's wrong about getting upset about a government trying to return someone to their country who faces certain imprisonment for their sexual orientation and about standing up to this government on climate change. Just because the Liberals don't want an election and want to duck that issue, it doesn't mean that the work of Parliament should grind to a halt.

I'll admit that some silly things have happened of late, but I don't count these two in that category. I was watching CPAC yesterday when Mr. Mulcair was giving his statement, and you could hear that Conservatives heckles as he was trying to stand up for someone who faces imprisonment for simply being gay. Who wouldn't get upset at being heckled like that while they were standing up for someone who faces unfair jailing???

Anonymous said...

He didnt get upset, he acted like a complete idiot and lost all control. Don't even try to play it down.

Frothing at the mouth? Innarticulate yelling? Really, politics is a circus at the best of times and there are better ways to react to anything than to lose it completely.

Ti-Guy said...

I can't for the life of me understand why anyone watches Queston Period. Nothing of substance is ever communicated there.

I have to say that *we* contribute to the debasement of Parliament because we pay attention to, react to and encourage the ridiculous theatrics that go on there...all the while refraining from sending complaints to the Speaker (who can do a lot more to curb the excesses) and all the while pretty much ignoring the work that goes on in committee.

We've got the Parliament we deserve; no use complaining about it. Although, I will say this: When the humourless CRAPpers entered Parliament, the last vestiges of comedy in the theatrics of the HoC were destroyed. I really do blame them for that, although, as we all know, they can't help but be humourless and juvenile.

Steve V said...


That climate change motion is just another attempt to embarrass the Libs, in what has become a game of dueling nonsensical motions. It isn't serious, it's just gamesmanship, to characterize it as anything else requires a departure from basic common sense.

Steve V said...

"all the while refraining from sending complaints to the Speaker (who can do a lot more to curb the excesses)"

Ti-guy, well there it is isn't it? I've actually reviewed what his powers are, and he has much more latitude than he uses. Maybe a party could table a decorum motion, which would reaffirm the Speaker's role, and unilaterally ask him to be more forceful, in the interest of discourse.

Ti-Guy said...

Ti-guy, well there it is isn't it? I've actually reviewed what his powers are, and he has much more latitude than he uses.

I know of one instance when a blogger (Stageleft) wrote to Peter Milliken and got a response which he blogged. Although the response was unhelpful (Milliken basically directed the blame to the parties), Stageleft was a bit more activist about it.

My biggest problem is that it's just so uninteresting and unentertaining; like watching a bunch of pre-teens squabble. It's irritating more than anything else.

That's why I don't watch it.

Steve V said...

Just to add, despite the fact that climate change motion is a political baseball bat, that doesn't mean the Libs shouldn't support it, in fact it might be a great idea.


If a junkie can't watch it, what does that say about the forum. I can watch here and there, more for the angles, than for learning anything substantive.

Saskboy said...

I'm starting to see the benefit of a "none of the above" option. Really, it could work better than MMP, STV, or any proportional system in restoring a reason for politicians to EARN votes instead of just being the least of all evils.

If None wins, they have a reelection. Tough poop.

Ti-Guy said...

Steve: The junkie is the one who persists in watching this...who gets a fix from the outrage, or from whatever humour/satisfaction he or she finds in cat-calling.

I'm not a political junkie...I've only become interested in politics again in the last few years after living in places with no real democracy and after coming to the conclusion that democracy is failing in Canada.

Opting out, by the not an option. That's exactly what those who aren't terribly interested in democracy want you to do.

Saskboy said...

Let's get into the details of the None option, shall we?

Does anyone who lost to the None vote not qualify for running in the next election for the same riding?

If None wins, who governs in the meantime?

Really the better solution is to have more people running to begin with, so voters have the one they want available. None only becomes a great option if the front runners are seen by most people to be terrible MPs, and it's too risky to vote for an underdog lest one of the frontrunners get in.

Steve V said...

And, you don't have to pay them. Potted plants only need water from time to time, during tough economic times government could trim waste by using cactus.

Steve V said...

"Opting out, by the not an option."

Agreed, but it would be nice to pull the lever with conviction, rather than a sense of duty.

Saskboy said...

"I'm not a political junkie.."

By most Canadian's standards, not only are you a junkie, you're also a notable dealer. That's not an insult, it's just an observation.

Ti-Guy said...

Agreed, but it would be nice to pull the lever with conviction, rather than a sense of duty.

Well, that's just the way it works, I'm afraid. Life isn't fair.

We just had an election in Alberta which, as far as I'm concerned, yielded a democratically-illegitimate result. We're not able to get any traction on proportional representation, and most of the electorate think that participatory democracy is secondary to whatever they're doing.

At this point, the best we can hope for is a cleansing crisis.

By most Canadian's standards, not only are you a junkie, you're also a notable dealer.

How so?

Saskboy said...

"By most Canadian's standards, not only are you a junkie, you're also a notable dealer.

How so?"

You're infamous on political blogs, pretty much daily. If that doesn't make someone a political junkie, I don't know what could. I think some political trolls have even devoted their lives to your online persona.

Ti-Guy said...

Well, that doesn't answer my question, but I don't really care anyway. I don't know what you mean by "dealer" and believe it or not, I can't stand politics (which is not the same thing as democracy). What I'm interested in is media and its role in the coming Endarkenment.

Every assertion based on no evidence at all is useful in that regard.

Saskboy said...

Metaphorically, a dealer is a junkie who is the next up the food chain. There are roving hordes of political bloggers who exist to know what you think. That alone, I'd say, makes you a political junkie. You also have your thumb in all the big political blogging pies.

northwestern_lad said...

Steve.... the Liberals have been claiming for months now that the NDP has been doing nothing but attacking them, and now the NDP brings a confidence motion on an issue that both the Liberals and NDP agree on against this Government and the NDP is still attacking the Liberals??? Holy inferiority complex Batman. Can Jack Layton breath without it being an attack on the Liberals???