Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tell Rob Nicholson To Pound Salt

The sheer gall of the man is remarkable. The Conservatives prorogue Parliament, for reasons NOBODY can adequately explain, and yet Rob Nicholson has the temerity to make demands of the opposition. Rob Nicholson can go pound salt. Try to hold down your lunch as you read the following:
Justice Minister Rob Nicholson is “hopeful” the opposition parties will agree to reinstate 14 crime bills that died with Parliament's prorogation late last year.

“What would their motives be not to agree? If a piece of legislation is good for Canadians ... why wouldn’t they give us their complete support?” Nicholson said Tuesday.

The 14 government-sponsored justice bills that died include imposing mandatory minimum sentencing for marijuana grow-ops of between five and 200 plants, increasing sentences for “white collar” fraud, tougher sentencing for auto thefts, and eliminating the “faint hope” parole clause for convicts serving life sentences, among others.

“To say, oh, they don’t like prorogation so they’re going to start opposing bills that better protect Canadian victims and law-abiding Canadians ...

That’s a bad reason,” Nicholson said. “I’ve got questions for them if they are just going to hold this up because they’re in a snit about something.” Nicholson made his appeal Tuesday while celebrating Bill C-25, which came into effect Tuesday and eliminates the courts’ practice of awarding prisoners a two-for-one - sometimes even three-for-one - credit for time served in pre-trial custody.

There is a hilarity to the Nicholson argument. The MORE Nicholson pushes the urgency, the more he says we require quick passage in the name of protecting our citizens, the more he highlights how irresponsible his own government. We arrive at this position, not because of Liberal Senators, soft on crime lefties, but because this government voluntarily ABANDONED their crime agenda. To now come to the table and start demanding this and that, the height of illogical arrogance. In a strange twist of fate, it is now up to the opposition to get tough on crime, because the Conservatives went soft, in the name of political expediency.

The opposition should hit back hard. Let Nicholson rant and rave with his increasingly tired arguments. The facts will never absolve the bombastic demands, this is the government's chosen path, they bear FULL RESPONSIBILITY. The Conservatives "held up" the business of the nation, tossed aside months of work and effort, and the opposition CAN'T reward this behavior, no matter the dueling optics. The simple fact of the matter, for all the rhetoric, any attack on the opposition as obstructing the crime agenda, can be met with the most easy of retort. If Nicholson wants to keep the prorogue issue on the frontburner, so be it, it highlights YOUR failings, not a indictment of ANYBODY BUT THE GOVERNMENT. Let the Conservatives make "tough on crime" the centerpiece of the throne speech and spring agenda, they've lost the moral imperative, they've been exposed as callous players, self interest before citizenry, and no amount of table pounding changes reality.


RuralSandi said...

I think it's a pathetic attempt to try to change the channel - lots of negative stuff going on for the Tories.

Nicholson gives me the creeps.

And, we have a "Justice" Minister who lies.

A Eliz. said...

I saw him on CBC on Politics.I cannot stand this man. I think he is totally bonkers. They say he was quite different in the Mulroney government. I swear Harper is cleansing their Progressive Conservative minds, and making them all sound nuts.

ottlib said...

There were suggestions in the media, in January, that the Conservatives would make just such demands so we should not be surprised and I would hope the Liberal Party is not surprised.

Remember the Conservatives have absolutely no scruples and they can count on their apologists in the media to muddy the waters on the hypocracy of this stance.

The second part of this strategy is to paint the Liberals as obstructionist if they refuse and again their apologists in the media will go along with it.

Or the Liberals will agree and those same Conservative media types will claim they are weak.

Either way the Conservatives and their media supporters have been desperately trying to change the channel, we all know they love to change it onto what the Liberals are doing and the Liberal reaction to these demands will probably do that to some extent.

The two questions are:

Have the Liberals prepared for this line of attack?

Will Canadians fall for it?

Anonymous said...

I've noticed that the media isn't giving the cons an easy ride as they did in the fall. Prorogation is a factor, but I think the other one is the fact that all that lucrative election advertisi...uh, I mean 'letting the government know what great tax incentives are out there' is drying up.

(I even got one of those bloody ads in my tax return.)

Nicholson looks more and more like a WWE character. Hey, maybe he'll show up on Raw March 1st, when Cheech and Chong are hosting. Call him Captain Grow-op or something, fighting to increase drug penalties so organized crime can make even more money.

JimmE said...


No TRUTH from Tomm?

rob said...

I'm a bit unclear after reading your post: are you suggesting that the Liberals shouldn't reinstate the crime bills? If so, you think they could do that while still being consistent with their message that the bills will make Canadians safer (which is demonstrably false, but they went along with the argument)?

bubba said...

If they support the bills they should vote their support. Likewise if they supported them earlier they should have passed them and encouraged the senate to do the same.If they dont support them vote against and try to defeat the Gov't. Its just not that complicated. at some point the Libs need to decide right is right and they are going to vote against things that are not right.

FrankDiscussion said...

Witness the so-called "gutting" of Bill C-15 (Senate Committee Hearing 12/03/09)


*** This video contains evidence that debunks the Conservative claim of Liberal Senators "gutting" Bill C-15. In fact, the two Conservative Senators who had questions about the amendment (Sen. Carignan and Sen. Wallace) seem to interpret the amendment as making the bill "stronger"!

Not exactly the reaction you'd expect over an amendment that supposedly "gutted" the bill.


WATCH VIDEOS OF EXPERT TESTIMONY from the Senate Committee and see for yourself.


Transcripts of the hearings:

Suggested witness testimony:

1) Eugene Oscapella – Ottawa lawyer and founder of Canadian Foundation for Drug Policy, http://CFDP.ca

2) David Bratzer – an active duty police officer in Victoria, BC, and a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP)

3) Craig Jones – Exec Dir., John Howard Society

4) Kirk Tousaw – Lawyer and Executive Director of the Beyond Prohibition Foundation.

Info resources for Bill C-15


Steve V said...


The onus is on the Cons to explain how they demand urgency on the one hand, but this plea is really a by-product of their own disregard for their own supposedly urgent legacy. If I'm the Libs, the last thing I'm worried about is the appearance of "consistency", because your opponent is absolutely disaster on that score. Essentially, I think the Libs have a free pass here, if played correctly, because the counter is absurd, and always will be.

Tof KW said...

The Grits should counter by stating they will fast-track the legislation - provided the CPofC supplies the unredacted documents for the Afghan inquiry. Let’s see the Reformatories spin that one.

Steve V said...

That's a great point. If the Cons really want to push this idea of making Parliament efficient, they can't very well obstruct the opposition.

Gayle said...

I have been saying that for a while now. If the CPC are truly concerned about getting back to business, they will have to get back to ALL business.

In addition to demanding the unredacted documents, they should demand the immediate reinstatement of the committee, and an undertaking from the government to have its members attend all meetings.

I am sure they can think of a few other demands. The opposition really is in the drivers' seat here, if they play their cards right.

Gayle said...

I also suspect Harper would be happy if the opposition refused to reinstate the bills - gives him something to work on during the next session...