Canadian politics – history in the making

Even those of us who aren’t very political are blogging about Canadian politics these days. So I thought I’d join in with my thoughts.

I’m finding the whole process quite interesting. Am I against the coalition? No, not at all. I really really dislike Stephen Harper and the actions of the Conservative Party.

First of all, when they were elected to lead Parliament the last go around, they made a big deal about setting election dates every four years. Why? They said it was so no political party could try to take advantage of things and call an election when it might be more in their favor. And this was actually passed in Parliament. Really??? Did the Conservatives follow their own legislation when calling the last election? No! Their platform stressed more accountability. I don’t see the Conservatives showing very much accountability at all.

And when Stephen Harper made a big fuss about Elizabeth May being included in the election debate, I was ticked! It was under the same grounds that a former Canadian Alliance leader was included in a previous election debate. Why make the big fuss? It only made Stephen Harper look more like a childish bully than anything else.

I cannot believe the audacity of Stephen Harper to propose to eliminate funding to the political parties in an effort to save a measly $30 million dollars when the country’s operating budget is in the billions. It is quite obvious that he was attempting to take down the other political parties so he could stay in power. In my opinion that is bordering on undemocratic.

And then in the midst of a worldwide recession, the Conservatives’ response is to do nothing. Leave everything as it is. What? Bury your heads in the sand!!! This attitude towards the current state of the economy makes no sense to me.

Since the announcement of a proposed coalition government, the Conservatives have thrown out such things as ‘this means the separatists will be running the country’. Well, actually, no, that is not the case. The Liberals and NDP are proposing to form a coalition government. The Bloc is not formally a part of the coalition. They have said they will support the coalition government for 18 months (in non-confidence votes). There’s a difference there. And previously the Canadian Alliance (which many Conservatives were a part of) on two occasions proposed forming an alliance with the Bloc in order to form a coalition government so its pretty hypocritical to freak out now.

I don’t like the Conservatives. I don’t like Harper. I don’t like their lack of ethics or integrity. I’d be glad to have them removed from power.

4 Replies to “Canadian politics – history in the making

  1. Regardless of who is who. No one should force their way in…period.

    Overthrowing authority does not sit right with me, no matter who God put in power. He is our leader. No one has placed in power but God. I don’t think it’s God’s heart to just rebel against authority.
    The issues are real, but the WAY this is happening is not

  2. Hmmm, interesting thoughts.
    Henry recently preached on praying and submitting to the authority in our lives. Regardless of what political party one represents, we are called to submit, to the authority. And there IS a difference between surrendering and submitting. one example Terry had, was when the Jewish midwives chose not to kill the first born baby boys. They were submitting to God in that case. It all comes down to a matter of the heart, I think. I’ve been really saddened by the way this is causing division and rifts among people, especially Christians. Let’s love one another, instead of bashing each other over the head with anger. If we love one another , God lives in us. What an amazing and challenging truth!

  3. Hi Sarah

    I think that you misunderstand how our political authority is setup. When we have an election we elect people to a parliament. It is these representatives that carry the authority of house of commons. The party with the most seats gets to form cabinet and their leader becomes PM. If the PM resigns the party will have rules setup to allow someone else to become leader of that party and become PM.

    We don’t elect the Prime Minister. We’ve had a number of PMs who never won an election like John Turner and Kim Campbell.

    The Prime Minister and his cabinet can govern as long as they have the “confidence of the house.” As long as a majority of the representatives in parliament believe that the PM is doing a competent job he or she remains PM.

    In the event that a PM turns out to be corrupt, pr the government is failing Canadians parliament can have a vote of non-confidence to remove him or her. The authority to depose a PM lies in the representatives we elect.

    If the party with the most seats has over half the seats they have a majority and they will normally govern until they call an election (but they are limited to a term of 5 years). The only way the PM could lose the confidence of the house would be for members of the government party to vote against the PM.

    If they don’t have more than half of the seats they have a minority government. They can govern as long as they have the support of half the parliament. This is less stable because the government requires the support of at least one other party or independent members in parliament.

    Normally in the event the house loses confidence in the government the PM asks the Governor General to dissolve parliament and call an election. This is exactly what happened to Paul Martin a few years ago.

    If the Governor General determines that another election would not resolve the situation, or it would create instability, he or she can ask the leader of the opposition if he or she can form a stable government. If the opposition demonstrates that they can form a stable government then the Governor General can ask the opposition coalition to form government.

    Today the opposition is not forcing their way in to anything. In this situation the highest authority in our parliamentary system, a majority of the representatives in the house of commons had declared they had lost confidence in the government. If allowed to go to a vote the Harper government would have fallen and the Governor General would either ask the opposition coalition to form government or she would have called an election.

    Harper did not want to submit to the authority of the house so he changed the date by which they could vote him out. Then he asked the Governor General to postpone parliament so he could avoid the vote even longer.

    The opposition parties aren’t overthrowing authority, as a majority they constitute the highest authority in parliament. Stephen Harper is lying to the Canadian people because this isn’t anything like a coup or an overthrow.

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