The CONs may have some spring in their step, thanks to some panicky-looking polls that were released yesterday. However, I can't help but think there remain many nervous Tories in the woodwork, wondering if they just escaped a harrowing Harper-implosion, or if their forecast has a monsoon in its future.
Playing fire with Canada's unity, while intentionally creating a burning-man target and isolating a fairly sensitive part of our population, has left their party looking like bitter-baters and raving conspirators. Funny that, considering the Reform-Alliance part of the CON team has its own 'separatist' ties.
But how do we counter Harper's gambit, and make our vision clear and void of his lined-up attack spiel?
We need to keep harping on the Harpocrisy of this government and its members.
Stephen Harper has gone on to prove that he supports set-elections (except for him); he believes in the right of a minority parliament to vote non-confidence (except if it's against him), and on those minority opposition parties to form allegiances to replace the government (again, unless it's his government). We already know about his insistence that others follow Canada's election laws (except him) and that the Governor General has a right to offer an opposition party/coalition the duty of governing (unless it's against him).
That being said, I do not support an aggressive, united Coalition force during the current break. For whatever reason, the wind of public opinion is not on the side of the Coalition, and while I agree with many, including Ignatieff, that its presence has provided some moral gains in the short term, its long term potential -- if any -- is very short. The question would be whether the first explosion would come from without or within seems to be 50-50 right now.
So, my hope is that the Liberal Party alerts the NDP that the deal isn't dead, but is more than dormant during the 50-some days between now and the return of the House.
Let's face it, there's nothing that can ground our reputation as the rightful Opposition (and next in line) as being stitched together in a desperate group of victims. Tied along with an expected endless string of CON advertising on 'the Coalition with the separatists', the public relations war does not look winnable at the current time.
Yes, Harper's a malicious cretin who will get his comeuppance. We have to stand up and make sure that in the meantime, the country and our party are there to counter him. Once he's delivered a budget, then we can talk Coalition again. But this time, no signing photo ops with Jack and Gilles, please (a major blunder)!
Despite his obvious and blatant disgust for our political system, Harper has suffered some battle injuries here. But to take advantage of them, we need to re-establish our strengths, which are national unity and a socially progressive, fiscally responsible platform. Those hard-earned points of honour have been badly damaged, and I'd agree undeservedly so but still, by Harper and his liars chorus.
We need to present a better, more restraint manner in which to deal with the most Gruesome Leader this side of Putin. He's already shown us his secret weapon, which will likely be used at a later date to draw an election (likely when it appears our new leader is at his weakest)... So another suggestion would be for the next leader to diffuse the public financing of political parties quickly, by promoting the same idea. The Liberal Party, if elected, would eliminate public funding of political parties within two years of taking office.
I don't have a lot of hope for the coalition as it now stands. Even with Dion's ouster, we are all aware that Harper is using all the carrots and no doubt sticks to pry as many members away. He is probably enjoying Kinsella's blog and taking notes.
However, we need to get the channel changed. The economy is going into the tank and we need to be at the ready to be promoting strong, sensible ideas. Tying our future with Layton doesn't look like a winner right now. Untying the Liberal Party from the branding currently under way by the lying CONs is where our focus has to be.