Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Haldimand "Hostile Takeover of the Canadian Government"

If you have been following the news the last couple of days, it has been "45" days since the election and the opposition leaders have a plan in place for a "hostile takeover" of the Canadian Government! The markets "plunged" yesterday after the news of this was made public. Job well done on the part of these very wise individuals, your news certainly helped out the economy of Canada! I can't wait to see what is going to happen if this "hostile takeover" actually comes in to play!

Of course they are not calling it a "hostile takeover", they are calling it a "Coalition Government". The reasoning behind this is best said by NDP leader Jack Layton; the house has no confidence in the Conservative government. I would like to state for the record that "I" have no confidence in their plan for a "hostile takeover" of our Government!

In November (just last month) approx. 60% of Canadians went to the polls. The result of this was the Conservatives won "143" seat, Liberals "77" seats, NDP "37" seats and the Bloc "49" seats. During one of the debates the leaders of the opposition parties "promised" the Canadian Public that they would make this government work if a minority government was voted in again by Canadians.

Well that "Promise" was broken in "45" days! In my opinion we have a bunch of adolescents that are taking tantrums in the house! This is their way of working together for the betterment of the Canadian people?

A majority government is "155" seats, the Conservatives came in "12" seats short of a majority government. The liberals under the leadership of Dion went from "95" seats to "77" seats, the worst election results in Liberal history. To boot during the election many liberals had no confidence in Dion, and the result of this is a new leader of the Liberal party will be chosen come I believe May of 2009 . So if this "hostile takeover" comes to light we will be calling Dion "Prime Minister", or rather the "interim" "Prime Minister Dion".

Now the way I see it is this has come about because the opposition leaders don't believe that Harper is doing enough to help out the economy in today's tough times. So what will this "hostile government" do if they go forth with their plan? First they will bail out the big car companies! Billions of our tax dollars will be given to these companies because their sales are down. How will this help? Will people go out and buy all those new cars? Or is there a possibility that these car companies will still go tits up in six months from now!

Maybe the new "hostile government" will open up a new department and have a new Minister? Well let's call it "The Ministry of Business Bailouts". This new department will give money to "every" Canadian Business that is in trouble, no questions asked. Oh I forgot to mention this will create new jobs! All on the backs of the rest of us trying to make it from paycheck to paycheck!

I am disgusted with this plan for a few reasons, the main reason is we went to the polls and we had our say, and now their is a takeover within the government that we did not vote on! Another reason is that with the Liberals and the NDP together this only amounts to "114" seats, so in order to make this a majority "Hostile Government" the Bloc is throwing in their "49" seats! This will make it a majority. The Bloc, my god what is going on? Part of the plan is that the Liberals will have "18" new Ministers and the NDP will have "6" new Ministers! So there will be some "ousting" going on in the house, where and who one can only guess.

I am not saying that we are not in an economic crisis here in Canada. I personally know a few people that have been laid off in the last couple of weeks. And I certainly don't have the answer to this crisis, but is this the best that the Liberals and the NDP could come up with? If anything they will accomplish only one thing.....Driving our Country into the Ground....

This could be the biggest "Green Shaft" in Canadian history. I could go on but I am really pissed! At least I can vent, I feel a bit better! How about You?

The following is a bit of background from Wikipedia on "Coalition Governments", and a good news story from the Toronto Star.

A coalition government, or coalition cabinet, is a cabinet of a parliamentary government in which several parties cooperate. The usual reason given for this arrangement is that no party on its own can achieve a majority in the parliament. A coalition government might also be created in a time of national difficulty or crisis, for example during wartime, to give a government the high degree of perceived political legitimacy it desires whilst also playing a role in diminishing internal political strife. In such times, parties have formed all-party coalitions (national unity governments, grand coalitions). If a coalition collapses a confidence vote is held or a motion of no confidence is taken.

In practice
To deal with a situation in which no clear majorities appear through general elections, parties either form coalition cabinets, supported by a parliamentary majority, or minority cabinets which may consist of one or more parties. Cabinets based on a coalition with majority in a parliament, ideally, are more stable and long-lived than minority cabinets. While the former are prone to internal struggles, they have less reason to fear votes of non-confidence. Majority governments based on a single party are typically even more stable, as long as their majority can be maintained.

Coalition cabinets are common in countries in which a parliament is proportionally representative, with several organized political parties represented. It usually does not appear in countries in which the cabinet is chosen by the executive rather than by a lower house, such as in the United States (however, coalition cabinets are common in Brazil). In semi-presidential systems such as France, where the president formally appoints a prime minister but the government itself must still maintain the confidence of parliament, coalition governments occur quite regularly.

Dec 02, 2008 04:30 AM
Richard J. Brennan Ottawa Bureau

OTTAWA–Immediate action to help the auto industry, increased spending on urban reconstruction and other measures to boost the economy and aid the jobless are being promised by the three-party coalition bidding to replace the Conservative government.

"Times are tough. This agreement is all about the economy. It's why we are together, to fight this economic crisis," said Liberal Leader Stéphane Dion after a historic accord involving his party, the New Democrats and the Bloc Québécois.

The deal signed by Dion, the NDP's Jack Layton and the Bloc's Gilles Duceppe was born last week out of their angry reaction to the lack of a major economic stimulus package in Finance Minister Jim Flaherty's fall policy statement.

In a press conference, the three coalition leaders said their timetable for action will depend on when they might form a government. But they vowed to move as quickly as possible to pump billions of dollars into the economy to counteract the recession, jump-start manufacturing, spark housing construction and support workers.

The federal purse is already headed for a deficit under the Harper government, the coalition agreement says, but "this new reality does not reduce the necessity to stimulate the economy." Without giving specifics, the coalition members said they'd run deficits for up to four years to spur growth.

Planned corporate tax cuts would go ahead, the leaders said. To guide the coalition's economic policy, the Liberals would like to create an advisory panel made up of such figures as former prime minister Paul Martin and one-time New Brunswick premier Frank McKenna.

Dion said coalition members "have a commitment to act promptly" to provide the auto sector with financial assistance.

The Big Three Canadian auto makers are asking collectively for between $3 billion and $4 billion to help stave off collapse.

At Queen's Park yesterday, opposition leaders expressed concern the jockeying for power in Ottawa would stall aid for the auto sector.

Late last night, Ontario's Economic Development Minister Michael Bryant and federal Industry Minister Tony Clement announced they had appointed former Molson chief executive Jim Arnett as a special advisor on the auto industry.



  1. How irresponsible of these government officials. Do they really think that they have the backing of the general public.

    Chrsyler is asking the government for 1 billion dollars to cover the shortfall of their pension plan. Should the taxpayer be responsible for this private US owned company? No we should not! They will take the money and run.

    Remember John Deere? The government bailed them out and a year later they picked up and left Hamilton with all the pension fund money.

    All this bailout will do is cover their shortfalls in the short term, in 6 months they will need more, if they don't get it, bingo they will be gone. Let them go now, if they cannot find a way to save their own companies tood bad.

  2. I usually support you in your posts Donna but this one smacks of partisan commentary.

    Just to clarify a couple of your points.

    1) "If you have been following the news the last couple of days, it has been "45" days since the election and the opposition leaders have a plan in place for a "hostile takeover" of the Canadian Government!"

    Actually what the opposition parties have put forward as a coalition government is hardly a "hostile takeover". The Constitution provides for opposition parties to put forward a proposal to form a government should the governing party lose a confidence vote.

    What these people are doing is fully legitimate and part of the parliamentary system of this country. In fact, it goes back hundreds of years as part of British Parliamentary democracy. What they are doing is constitutionally sound and is in fact Democratic albeit frustrating to the general public.

    Stephen Harper himself in 2004 had a similar agreement with the NDP and Bloc to try and wrestle power away from the Liberal government of the time. He went so far as to jointly send a letter to the then Governor General. Was that to be a "hostile takeover" if it had been successful which it wasn't?

    It is somewhat disingenuous for the Conservatives to be making such a fuss today when they engaged in the very same tactics in 2004.

    2) “The markets "plunged" yesterday after the news of this was made public."

    I listened to a couple of different financial experts on television today regarding the market meltdown yesterday including one from the DeGroot School of Business at McMaster. They made it clear that the market meltdown yesterday was the result of the worldwide market issues primarily because of the announcement in the United States that they had been in a recession for over a year. The meltdown yesterday had nothing to do with the goings on in Ottawa. In fact today there was no meltdown but a very small drop in the TSX after a relatively strong day of trading.

    In Summary) Mr. Harper brought the problems we are facing today with our parliament on himself and his party. I for one do not support Stephan Dion and certainly want nothing to do with the Bloc but to suggest this is a “hostile takeover” is somewhat over the top.

    Although legal what I find to be not democratic is the current move by Mr. Harper to push for prorogue of parliament to avoid the confidence vote he and his party created by putting forward an unacceptable financial update. To suspend parliament to simply avoid a vote on your financial update is irresponsible.

    At the same time it is foolish of Mr. Dion and his counterparts to be forming this coalition at this time.

    The answer to this is for everyone that has been elected to that chamber to grow up and start working together for the good of the people of this country who by the way pay all their salaries that are well beyond the salaries of most Canadians.

    The Governor General should ignore the prorogue request and the coalition request and similar to 2004 force the government to fail and force another election.

    If Mr. Harper wanted to do something constructive rather than engaging in rhetoric with the opposition parties he would:

    1) Put forward legislation limiting financial support only to parties that run candidates nationally. That would effectively eliminate funding for the Bloc and any other regional party.

    2) He would put forward legislation that removes the concept of government failure based on non-confidence votes on certain legislation. The governing party should govern for its full term of 4 years. Any bill that is voted down by the majority of parliament simply fails. If the government wants the bill to pass they need to ensure the majority of parliament supports it before they table it in parliament. At the same time a government cannot orchestrate its demise when the public opinion polls favour such a move. They must govern for their full term.

    What we need at this time in our history is creative constructive ideas, cooperation not rhetoric and above all like is taking place in the United States a government that embraces its foes not confront them.


  3. I agree with Lisa to a point. I don't agree that she said your blog was a partisan commentary. I read it as a frustration of the days events.

    It is interesting that Lisa then goes on to basically agree with what you wrote, just worded a bit differently. She too does not believe at a time in our history that this is the right move. To compare what Harper did in 2004 to now does not even compare.

    Yes I would agree that Harper has brought this problem on himself. Shame on him for not handing over billions of public money to bail out Ford, GM and Chrysler. I too agree Donna that the writing is on the wall that these companies will bailout on the government as fast as they can shake a stick!

    Harper has got it right, unleass there is some kind of deal that is solid in either shares, dividends or a promise that public money will be returned, these companies need to fend for themselves.

    I wonder how much do the top executives at these companies earn a year? I'll bet it is more than the Prime Minister of Canada.

    The Harper government needs to fight this so called coalition (I like your term hostile takeover better) with everything they have. All parties need to sit down and talk this out, do the right thing, be accountable, put petty peeves aside and do the job that they were all elected to do!

  4. "Without giving specifics, the coalition members said they'd run deficits for up to four years to spur growth."

    What kind of deficit are they talking about? The Canadian people need to heard the figures. The Canadian people should have a say.

    Will this mean that a coalition government would be in place until 2012? Our Country will be in a state of bankrupcy by that time.

    This cannot work, the Liberals NDP and Bloc can't even agree on their polices, how the heck can they work together in running this counctry. Will we have a Green Tax along with Tax cuts to please both parties, and what is in this for Quebec?

    The 49 seats that the Bloc have do not represent Canada, these seats only represent one Province Quebec, what deal has the Bloc made?

    This is back door politics at it's best! Put Canadians first and stop the political games.

  5. What a freakin mess!!! Our so called "LEADERS" and I do mean all of them, are acting like a bunch of schoolkids while many of the people living under their rule are terrified of what their future holds. SHAME ON THEM! To begin with, let's not lose sight of what started this whole mess and that was Jim Flaherty announcing that his government was going to pull the $1.35 per vote payment to the other parties as if that would make a difference in our country's economy. It was an insult, plain and simple. A childish game instigated by a bullying government, and look what it's led to. It makes me sick! It's time our politicians stopped politicking and started governing. Our country is close to crisis, their job is to fix it. I go along with the no confidence vote, I don't have confidence in any of them, but I'll tell you what. If there is going to be another election Stephen Harper should not be allowed to run, he's got way too much ego and self worth to make a good leader of the people.

  6. If Harper tries to suspend Parliament to side-step the democratic process of a vote by members, he should be kicked right out of his office immediately.

    That's an abuse in my opinion and perhaps this is why the coalition wants him out in the first place. After all, a coalition is nothing but a safeguard against dictators.

  7. I disagree with this partisan report.
    First Harper and his party are calling foul for what they attempted to do to the Martin Liberal government. Funny how all the corporate conservative media were quiet at that time, and so noisy when done by parties they trained.What goes round comes round!!

    Second, the consitution does not even mention the word "party". A Prime Minister is not chosen by the voters, but by parliament when they have the power to run a government. Now if in a minority position a PM choses to alienate the MP's (the only designation in the Canadian Consitution, that may decide anything) then that PM may be challenged with a vote of confidence and be asked to step down because parliament is not supportive.

    Third, minority governments usually force parties to work together. This did not happen in the last 2 majority gov't and it is not happening now.

    Fourth, stick to the topic, the 'vote of confidence'. The rest is partisan, messaging and spinning.

    Fifth Quebec voted against separation, stop trying to demonize this province, they are all Canadian.

    Last,it is time parliament got back to work for a majority of the voters. The first past the post, only used in 4 democratic parliaments is no longer working. Minority governments have become disfunctional, and it is time to try a coalition, as allowed by our constitution. This constitution has protected the will of the people since 1887.

  8. Of course this is a partisan blog on Donna's part, but so are the rest of the comments. I am sure that those that did not support Harper in the last election would call this partisan.

    What good would this coalition do for Canadians? Have you really given that a thought? I would like to hear some positive feedback in policy that makes some support this coalition.

    Besides bailing out the GM,Ford and Chrysler which none of these are Canadian companies, what would they do differently?

    Harper gave a bit when he gave back the 1.35 per vote to all parties, and by the way the Conservatives had the most to loose on that decision. So how about the other leaders, they all promised that they would make a minority government work, they lied!

    It is time for reform of our election process.

  9. Thanks everyone for your comments.

    This has really stirred up a lot of emotions. I have talked to many that are just down right peeved off at everyone in the House!

    Wouldn't it be nice to see more than 59.9% of Canadians at the polls, this could have made a difference today.

    I hope everyone has their say one way or another, post on a blog, write a letter to the editor, sign a petition, go to a rally, this is no time for any of us to sit back and do nothing!

  10. I just posted this comment on your Rally for Canada article! Thanks

    Thanks for the link to the petition Donna. I could not attend any rally and I wanted to do something. I also posted on your other story.

    This petition is now up to 146,592 signatures. Donna you are not the only one that feels this way, great job covering this and keeping us in the loop.


  11. Harper is to blame? For what? He tried to cut the funding to the parties, and tried to stop public workers from striking. He conceded both of these issues and yet the opposition is still pushing for a coalition government? Why? They are the wons that won't give. The last time I looked at the election results Harper was voted in as Prime Minister and it should stay that way until the next election. This is not democracy, we did not vote in a coalition of parties.

  12. It seems to me that most Canadians have forgotten two very important things about our system of government; one is that every person sitting in the house of commons, regardless of what party they belong to, got elected by the Canadian people. Secondly, the whole purpose of a Parliamentary Democracy is to allow the non-ruling parties the opportunity to keep the ruling party in line with what is best for the country. I don't know what the solution is but I do know that our system is working in the way in which it was designed to work and hopefully we have some elected officials in the house who can take the bull by the horns and get the country back on track. The should be no room for the bullying and childish behaviour witnessed every day on question period. Lives are at stake here!