Wednesday, August 20, 2008

If you're scary and you know it, clap your hands, clap clap...

I'm not sure there's much more to add to the noise about election timing that's sucking up all available oxygen...but there's something in this bit of Conservative strategery that's worth pointing out:
"Mr. Harper said polls show the most likely outcome of an election now would be another minority government, “one way or the other.” His comments are in line with earlier Conservative strategy aimed at blocking concerns about a Harper majority and portraying Mr. Dion as indecisive."
A few things...can you imagine running for Prime Minister and having to reassure the country, oh, don't worry, I'll be restrained by a minority government situation anyway. As in, I know you all are afraid of giving me a majority out of fear of what I might do to the country, so I'll just play down expectations in order to make you feel OK about voting for me. Man! Have we ever seen such a thing? Oh wait...we heard that last time. In over two years, he still hasn't alleviated such concerns and must again revert to such embarrassing strategy. What is that saying that W flubbed so badly? Fool me once...

Leading to this...we know that even a Harper minority is unrestrained. What assurance would the voters have that he wouldn't be treating every vote as a confidence measure next go round, that he wouldn't act as he has to date, in a bullying posture toward the other parties and institutions of our democratic government? He is who he is, he's shown himself for better and for, mostly, worse. While the Conservatives can afford to have election upon election, the other parties cannot. Therefore, if a Harper minority were re-elected, the same dynamic in Parliament would likely recur. Would Harper be chastened after a second minority, as he rightly should be if he respected the voters' choice? Well, based on his record, do we have any indication that a new Harper would work with the other parties? No. A Harper minority is not a minority at all.

The logical and better outcome would be to put the government in the hands of someone else. Someone we're not afraid of. What a concept.

And one more thing. If Harper doesn't like the law that he passed, constraining his ability to call an election, then he should repeal his law, first order of business when the fall session returns. Put his money where his mouth is, so to speak.