Steelcitygrit [in exile]

Ruminating on all things Canadian and political.

 

Monday, September 11, 2006

'A fool for five minutes': Questions for Iggy RE:constitution

Today I had intended on posting a detailed and forceful endorsement of Michael Ignatieff. After yesterday's developments and a lengthy conversation with my coblogger, I agreed that before I do that I must in good conscience ask a few questions. They are fairly straight-forward; I look forward to a quick response.

- How can Quebec be recognized as a distinct constitutional entity without eroding massively the supremacy of the Charter?

- How can Quebec be recognized as a distinct constitutional entity without initating a further devolution of governmental capacity?

- If we can maintain the preeminence of the Charter and the place of the Federal government, what are we offering Quebec in return for its assent to the Constitution?

- If the French Canadian Nation in Quebec is recognized legally, how can we guarantee the other nations and ethnicities in Quebec equal participation and recognition?

- How can we maintain and protect the Franco minority outside of Quebec, if the province is to become the French "Homeland".

- Why now?

- Mike (SCG)

26 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I want to know:

1.) What are we offering other provinces to have them agree to this?

2.) How many first nations will be recognized in the constitution?

3.) What will this change?

4.) How can you negotiate (offering nothing) with hard-asses like Danny Williams, Ralph Klein, Dalton McGuinty (and/or their successors)?

5.) Who are you to fly into Canada and tell us how to manage our affairs?

Ok - the last one was a little harsh - but he missed the last constitutional debates, and the ensuing referrendums so perhaps he doesn't know why Canadians are content to worry about other issues.

6.) One more: If we're fixing this for Quebec, will we fix the senate for the west?

2:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good Questions.

I am a moderate, federalist, anglo Quebecker who was going to vote for this guy too. The civil war comment perplexed me. The constitution comment moved my vote to Dion.

Ignatieff is still impressive, but he has moved from #1 to #2 on my list.

2:19 PM  
Blogger s.b. said...

He has no understanding of Canadian constitutional embroglios because he wasn't here for them. When he left Canada, our constitutiion was still the BNA. He thinks it's easy. He's a fool and anyone who votes for him is too. The man wasn't here. He doesn't know what he's talking about.

2:25 PM  
Anonymous Hammertime said...

He is a smart guy.

A few years in cabinet/parliament to do some homework, learn the lay of the land, talk to Canadians and he'll be ready to lead.

I also think he has a lot of charisma, and international appeal.

But, he just moved home. It's not time yet - and this past month more than proves it.

3:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Give your heads a shake - he knows exactly what happened during the referendum, he knows Canada better than we do. He's realizing that Canada can't continue with the blackmail by the separatists and the costs by taxpayers from other provinces just to keep them happy. The others are just too chicken to deal with it. If idiot Levesque hadn't gone for a nap during the signing perhaps things would be different today.

3:57 PM  
Blogger Sholdice said...

Who can deal with this bullshit? You know who Mike, you know who.

"Land, peace and bread."

4:10 PM  
Anonymous Leonid said...

Why does Ignatieff (as well as his supporters) think that puting the words 'Quebec is a nation' in the Constitution will stop separatism? It will not. Some (very) soft separatists will be contented, perhaps even a substatial number, but only for a short while. After a couple of years it will be whining as usual. Apeasement DOESN'T work!

5:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

L'apaisement ne réussira jamais. Nous avons besoin de la conduite courageuse de notre gouvernement national, pas les lâches qui se rendent au nationalisme. Je veux le « un Canada ». Je ne veux pas deux Canadas, trois Canadas, dix Canadas ou treize Canadas. J'adore et je veux l'UN Canada égal - notre nation, notre pays. C'est mon identité, Michael Ignatieff, ne volent pas mon identité. Oui à l'unité, pas à la division, particulièrement pas dans notre constitution.

6:48 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

When did Mike say he thought this was a good idea? Obviously he didn't.
And Sholdice, honestly man, your candidate is missing in action, when not auditioning for the NDP.
While we're articulating the importance of bread and butter over mega-constitutional talks your busy taking partisan potshots, and your man is busy staying out of it. If we agree then let's agree eh.
S.B.-your comment is entirely irrational. First of all, Ignatieff obviously does know the constitution. And while he I agree is seriously underestimating the cost of such actions, to say because he wasn't a full-time resident during the big constitutional changes that he knows nothing is nothing short of ridiculous. Perhaps you can try explaining that to the majority of your blogging comrades who were either not alive, or children when these issues came up. Obviously we have studied them, or did we just soak up the land through our pores? Come on now. There may be legitimate concerns with being out of country, etc., this as you have phrased it is not one.

8:12 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

8:13 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

I'm so disgusted, particularly with teh apologists confusing themselves with supporters (ie. fuddle duddle-who have officially sold out and who I'll have more to say on later) that I'll hvae to wait a bit. But power to you.

This is not saying I don't support Ignatieff, though not his constitituional folly not particularly, but that doesn't make the others suddenly wonderful either. Plus there's more to it. Alas here I go I'll explain later.

9:02 PM  
Blogger SteelCityGrit said...

s.b. What a ridiculous comment - read Rights Revolution and show me where Ken Dryden or anyone has developed these constituional issues in as much depth. But he didn't live here. What pathetic, parochial, partisan meaninglessness. He's very wrong, but you're wronger about him and have once again missed the point completely. It's really unsophisticated, and really really uncompelling to jump on every aspect of a candidate as proof of his ineligibility. He opened himself up to so much legitimate criticism with this constituional foolishness. But you refer simply to the fact that he was teaching about nationalism at premier international institutions rather than operating hockey teams in Canada. Grow up and make an argument of substance and you may actually change some minds.

Sholdice - fun is fun, but let's get serious here friend.

9:55 PM  
Blogger Miles Lunn said...

Considering how opening up the constitution last time around only divided our nation, I think for all its imperfections we are best to leave it alone. If we recognize Quebec is a nation, I am sure the First Nations will want the same treatment as will other groups including Francophone minorities outside Quebec. This will only further Western Alienation more as they will see this as pandering to Quebec. In fact the last thing we need is three separtist movements (Quebec, Alberta, and Newfoundland). I think the best solution here is recognize Quebec as culturally distinct and ensure federal government policies are mindful of this when being implemented, but leave the whole damn constitution alone. I also don't believe in further devolution of powers either. If we devolve more powers to one province, the other provinces will demand the same and pretty soon Canada will be nothing more than a EU style political union as opposed to a single country.

12:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"he knows Canada better than we do"

It's this kinda talk from Ignatieff flunkees that drives me crazy.

9:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read blogger "Curiously Liberal" today and it's quite interesting.

10:19 AM  
Blogger Sholdice said...

Steve, "auditioning for the NDP?"

Give me a break. My candidate seems like the only person not trying to appease the seperatists right now. He's the guy who is refraining from using ethnic nationalism to win a leadership campaign. I call that being responsible.

I know Ignatieff has been abroad for a long time, but I expected him to have heard of things like Meech Lake or Charlottetown. Opening up the festering sore that is the constitutional debate would be suicide for the Liberal Party and the country as a whole.

Mike - I'm really tired of people telling me to read his books instead of defending his ideas. I don't really give a damn about his books. In politics you don't get to respond to your opponents with a finely-crafted thesis. Ignatieff either needs to grow up and learn to adapt to Canadian politics or get out.

If you want me to get serious, I will. This guy is nothing short of a danger to the Party and the Canadian Confederation. You can't leave the country for a generation and waltz back in with pretensions to lead.

11:14 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Mark, well talking of pulling out of Afghanistan is the kind of short-sighted, poll-driven nonesense that the NDP is currently thriving on, so yes.

And he is not being responsible, he is not taking a stand any which way! He has been irresponsible on this for months as we complain and beg for some comment on this now apparently so important issue, and all you had to respond with was nonesense about millworkers needing to be prime ministers over ivory tower academics (who were actually journalists on the front lines for a decade but nevermind the facts).

I think this constitutional debate is dangerous for the country, however your assertion that he is a danger to the country began long before any of this was mentioned and in fact when we started talking about this, and Gerard was not, your response was oh who cares about all that, but now it seems to be a dnager to the federation eh? Its essential to have a logical compass that guides you, not by the cut and thrust of the campaign but by your own centre.
You don't have to read his books, but that point is perfectly relevant to someone saying he doesn't understand something that we ourselves didn't consciously live through! "Iggy knows more than us" is so offensive (which isn't what he said) as if we have some natural Canadian constitutional sense in our blood, oh wiat, he was born here, okay it comes in the blood after awhile I suppose.

But Mark, to even for a second suggest that we, or Mike, have once suggested "read his books" RATHER THAN defending his ideas is ludicrous. We have done nothing short of lay out his ideas in great detail, only to be mocked for and told his right hook is a more effective arbiter of his abilities.

Opening the constitution is wrong-headed. However, so is somehow misconstruing the most progressive potential leader we've had in a generation for a Robespierre (ha ha, Mike) especially when one supports another good progressive like Kennedy (well supposedly, he hasn't actually said how, other than taxing SUVs).

Again, I think it is wrong to see this party become the party of special status, but Ignatieff's is a very qualified one, which specifically says Civic rather than ethnic, and regardless it is pretty audacious for you to lecture us on the topic we were told not 4 months ago by yourself is all too much academic hooey.

11:30 AM  
Blogger Sholdice said...

"Civic"? In English Canada, nation means nation. I don't care about qualifiers. Why did Peterson lose in Ontario? Because he got too close to this flame.

On Afghanistan - it is not in Canada's interests to prop-up what is essentially a U.S. puppet regime. While I disagree with those Hippie Dippers (who believe in appeasement), I also don't want innocent Canadian soldiers to die so that Karzai and his supporters can stay in power. As it stands this is not a humanitarian mission. That isn't "poll-driven" nonsense, that's reality.

The reason this constitutional stuff scares me now is because it seems Ignatieff actually believes he can apply his ideas to Canadian politics. As long as he was this lorldy philosopher king he remained harmless. But the guy seems to actually think Canada is some big political science experiment. He wants to overturn the careful accomodations it has taken centuries to achieve.

If you want to understand my thinking, look at the example of Sonia Gandhi of India. She was a rich Italian who happened to marry into the INC's premier political family, eventually becoming it's leader. And that pissed a lot of people off - a foreigner arriving in their country, pretending to be one of them; assuming to know the best for the country.

I've spoken with many Liberal Party members and they feel the same way. We were the ones who have fought the battles. Why should we surrender our great organization to an American academic interloper just because he likes to expound on what's best for us?

I'm a Canadian nationalist, a proud Ontarian and a progressive Liberal and I will not stand for this.

11:56 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Mark what battles did you fight?! Enough of this empty emotionalism. You didn't fight any of those battles, not one. So don't act like its somehow personal involvement that dictates having an opinion. Ignatieff was more involved then you were at 8. And I wouldn't be surprised if you would support Meech etc., and would've told us that it was essential compromise. Again, you cannot lecture me on this issue. No way. You ceded that ground when you chose partisan advantage (see what Kennedy does, find a way to justify it) months ago. You are proud? What does that mean. I am proud too. And I am progressive. And I care about national child care, actually attacking the environmental problem, support for unemployed seasonal workers, a revitalized maritimes and stronger regional development policies, tax policies that do not benefit the rich on the backs of the poor, a strong natioanl food program to bring rural Canada on side and out of desperation. Ignateiff cares about these things too, so that is absolutely enough of your effected idignation. Interloper? Come off it, that is the kind of blind anti-Americanism (which he isn't) that he rightly condemns.
And if you do not understand the fundamental difference between enshrining a civic nation vs. an ethnic one than that is not for me to teach. I will say I agree that it is wrong-headed, that Quebec is not really this, but that the true danger of enshrining special status has been the principle enshrinement of two ethnic solitudes. This does not do that. But again, I do not like it anyway. And Ignatieff was always a threat to be in power hence your alarmism months ago. What you mean to say is that you care now because it has become a convienent wedge issue.
And tell me, do you support Bob Rae? Because in all likelihood that is where your vote will be parked. Fragile compromise? No one tried harder to rip this country apart than Rae himself as an AUTHOR of the Charrolltetown Accord, and you have no qualms with de facto supporting this man, someone who unlike Ignatieff literally tried this but in the great premierial power grab fashion aimed for a deadly devolution of power (which Ignatieff has expressly denied), and would've seen the Charter interpreted along ethnic lines? THis is where your righteous disgust leads you? Well no thank you. Or what will you do walk out if Kennedy does not win? No, you would support Rae to stop this interloper, this outsider (oh wait, he is also an insider if I am to understand correctly, a true back room boys' pick). Rae may say now he won't open it but first of all we don't know that and second you had no qualms with this situation before he said that on Sunday. Before that he was the incarnate of this kind of dualism that suddenly has your nationalism aflame and yet you spent all your time warning us of the terror of Ignatieff and not Rae one bit. What sense does that make?

And if your own reasoning holds, if you believe what you say so much, then should you not have from the beginning, like Mike and I, been passionate about this type of agenda not making it? You obviously are NOT irate, considering you are so fully behind a candidate you do not know the stance of on this issue. Because none of us do. So while you said its not important enough to make my decision based on, now you are telling us you're the great defender. Come on.

And what you say about Afghanistan, that is NDP talk, this reduction of complex international issues to "ooh Bush-lite" is a waste of our time. Kennedy says the mission needs to not be solely military but alaso development. Well Ignatieff has said the same thing since the beginning. It is in Canada's interest to advance the cause of democracy and freedom around the world, regardless of how unfashionable the current American president may be. You differentiate yourself from the NDP but make no sense. Basically you are saying you do not believe we have any business doing this, but you refer to their thinking as appeasement. You seem to say you would stay solely to not run away. We should stay, but for no good reason, which opens the door very wide. We should stay because we don't run? If that was my logic for staying I'd say let's get out of there. However, it is a humanitarian issue, as Ignatieff said you cannot build schoolds if they are burned down the next day. In a country where women were murdered for going to school, and we are working against that, I find this modern relativism that it is just an imperial occupation disgraceful. It is this kind of talk that we should not stand for, as you say. How is this not a humanitarian exercise? And if not, why the hell do you want to stay, so we don't get bullied?! Innocent Candians must not die but Afghani innocents, what of them? We will give them crops to harvest but a govt that allows them absolute domination or death? But this is a debate to have with the NDP, exactly my point previously. I will say I believe you've gone farther than Gerard, at least I hope.

So you will stand so strong, but support devolution by stealth through other candidates gladly, or wash the issue aside, but no its just coinidental that you smell blood in a campaign you had set your mind against before ever contemplating it (its hard to dispute that when it has evolved consistently).

You won't stand for this? As if we have something to apologize for. What great battle are you fighting for? The right to misinterpret articles but respond that is your right as a Canadian who know spolitics is quick and dirty, yet maintain the original outrage even after proven false?

12:26 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

Mark what battles did you fight?! Enough of this empty emotionalism. You didn't fight any of those battles, not one. So don't act like its somehow personal involvement that dictates having an opinion. Ignatieff was more involved then you were at 8. And I wouldn't be surprised if you would support Meech etc., and would've told us that it was essential compromise. Again, you cannot lecture me on this issue. No way. You ceded that ground when you chose partisan advantage (see what Kennedy does, find a way to justify it) months ago. You are proud? What does that mean. I am proud too. And I am progressive. And I care about national child care, actually attacking the environmental problem, support for unemployed seasonal workers, a revitalized maritimes and stronger regional development policies, tax policies that do not benefit the rich on the backs of the poor, a strong natioanl food program to bring rural Canada on side and out of desperation. Ignateiff cares about these things too, so that is absolutely enough of your effected idignation. Interloper? Come off it, that is the kind of blind anti-Americanism (which he isn't) that he rightly condemns.
And if you do not understand the fundamental difference between enshrining a civic nation vs. an ethnic one than that is not for me to teach. I will say I agree that it is wrong-headed, that Quebec is not really this, but that the true danger of enshrining special status has been the principle enshrinement of two ethnic solitudes. This does not do that. But again, I do not like it anyway. And Ignatieff was always a threat to be in power hence your alarmism months ago. What you mean to say is that you care now because it has become a convienent wedge issue.
And tell me, do you support Bob Rae? Because in all likelihood that is where your vote will be parked. Fragile compromise? No one tried harder to rip this country apart than Rae himself as an AUTHOR of the Charrolltetown Accord, and you have no qualms with de facto supporting this man, someone who unlike Ignatieff literally tried this but in the great premierial power grab fashion aimed for a deadly devolution of power (which Ignatieff has expressly denied), and would've seen the Charter interpreted along ethnic lines? THis is where your righteous disgust leads you? Well no thank you. Or what will you do walk out if Kennedy does not win? No, you would support Rae to stop this interloper, this outsider (oh wait, he is also an insider if I am to understand correctly, a true back room boys' pick). Rae may say now he won't open it but first of all we don't know that and second you had no qualms with this situation before he said that on Sunday. Before that he was the incarnate of this kind of dualism that suddenly has your nationalism aflame and yet you spent all your time warning us of the terror of Ignatieff and not Rae one bit. What sense does that make?

And if your own reasoning holds, if you believe what you say so much, then should you not have from the beginning, like Mike and I, been passionate about this type of agenda not making it? You obviously are NOT irate, considering you are so fully behind a candidate you do not know the stance of on this issue. Because none of us do. So while you said its not important enough to make my decision based on, now you are telling us you're the great defender. Come on.

And what you say about Afghanistan, that is NDP talk, this reduction of complex international issues to "ooh Bush-lite" is a waste of our time. Kennedy says the mission needs to not be solely military but alaso development. Well Ignatieff has said the same thing since the beginning. It is in Canada's interest to advance the cause of democracy and freedom around the world, regardless of how unfashionable the current American president may be. You differentiate yourself from the NDP but make no sense. Basically you are saying you do not believe we have any business doing this, but you refer to their thinking as appeasement. You seem to say you would stay solely to not run away. We should stay, but for no good reason, which opens the door very wide. We should stay because we don't run? If that was my logic for staying I'd say let's get out of there. However, it is a humanitarian issue, as Ignatieff said you cannot build schoolds if they are burned down the next day. In a country where women were murdered for going to school, and we are working against that, I find this modern relativism that it is just an imperial occupation disgraceful. It is this kind of talk that we should not stand for, as you say. How is this not a humanitarian exercise? And if not, why the hell do you want to stay, so we don't get bullied?! Innocent Candians must not die but Afghani innocents, what of them? We will give them crops to harvest but a govt that allows them absolute domination or death? But this is a debate to have with the NDP, exactly my point previously. I will say I believe you've gone farther than Gerard, at least I hope.

So you will stand so strong, but support devolution by stealth through other candidates gladly, or wash the issue aside, but no its just coinidental that you smell blood in a campaign you had set your mind against before ever contemplating it (its hard to dispute that when it has evolved consistently).

You won't stand for this? As if we have something to apologize for. What great battle are you fighting for? The right to misinterpret articles but respond that is your right as a Canadian who know spolitics is quick and dirty, yet maintain the original outrage even after proven false?

12:26 PM  
Blogger Sholdice said...

One battle I fought was the 2006 election, which Ignatieff convienently spent building-up a leadership campaign machine. Would you like to know what partisan advantage is? That's recruiting an expat Canadian academic and drafting him to lead the Liberal Party. I ignore Rae because he can't/won't win.

And don't tell me whom I will support or won't support. I support the person who corresponds to my personal views. He does have a stance on this issue, a stance I have personally spoken to him about. I support a flesh and blood man, not a series of books.

My indignation is very real. I'm tired of being lectured to about b.s. like the meaning of "nation". My ancestors have been in this province since the 1790s, on this continent since the 1640s. Why isn't my "nation" recognized? Of course Quebec has a distinct "civic" identity. But what about Ontario or Manitoba? What makes them any less unique? I have always believed that all the provinces are equal.

Pierre Trudeau is spinning in his grave. I am worried of the outcome this December. To paraphase the great man: "[T]he [Liberal Party] was set to last a thousand years. Alas, only one eventuality hadn't been foreseen: that one day the party would fall into the hands of a weakling. It has now happened."

1:13 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

Yes Mark, you fought a battle that he did too. Wow. And what is partisan advantage about recruiting an academic (ahem, pierre) to be leader. Trudeau went in just for cabinet. Who cares? I am thrilled at the prospect of having someone who is passionate about liberalism, not making excuses for us, but truly excited about this party's importance.

And I will tell you because we live in the world of reality, that if Kennedy doesn't win, which I don't think he can, your vote goes elsewhere. To say nothinga bout Rae and pretend to be some Trudeau Liberal is a joke. An absolute joke.

You know Kennedy's stance? Well how about sharing it, how about he share it with the country and the party that he has the gall to try and lead without telling us why! Telling your supporters in private is no consolation for me.

All this books business is a red herring and you know it. Books are in print, and we're talking about policy platforms released to the public. So now that is too academic for you? Well I'm sorry but I am not going to hinge my vision of the country on someone's aside to university student.

First of all, despite your attempted dichotomoy me and Mike have not said that we think Quebec should be recognized as a nation and all that. Don't even try and lecture us on that, in fact your english-Canadian nationalism is the exact wrong attitdue to have, it is the flip-side of the coin you are talking about. It is the evidence of the insincerity of your quoting of Trudeau, how much you have misunderstood his message. We are ALL Canadians, nevermind your ancestors (christ what has this come to) and I don't agree with defensive nationalisms. To say all the provinces are equal? Well yes I agree. So I'm glad we are in agreement.

Do not attempt to quote Trudeau to me, or should I say misquote Trudeau. If you actually understood Trudeau's mission you would realize that that whole speech hinged on the importance of not entrenching an ethnic identity and the reason that the leader whom he was speakinga bout was a weakling (Mulroney) is because -and if you read the entire piece you would see this, but I guess in politics somehow it is nobler to ignore the details according to you- as a negotiator he sold off Canada apace. Trudeau was irate that the federal governemnt received nothign in return, nor did it even ask for anything in return.

Ignatieff has already demanded:
1) constitutional recognition of the spending power
2)definition of a clear mandate for the federal authority to promote the unity of Canadian citizenship
3) the unity of the national economic space and the protection of Canadian sovereingty
4) a constitutional definition of Canada's bilingualism (I am less impressed with multi-nationalism)

Trudeau himself suggested some of these demands, particulalry a federal economic union which is a truly pan-Canadian national unity tool. Trudeau said expressly that Meech suffered for lacking in that.
Also, a central concern with those was what Trudeau feared as the "crippling" of the federal government. He pointed to the many devolutionary aspects of these agreements, not to simple nationalistic statements. This should be our immediate concern if we are, as you say, most concerned with bread and butter issues for everyday Canadians. Ignatieff has said: "...not to make some new concession...nor is it a prelude to further devolution of powers. Quebec already possesses the authority it needs, in areas of health, education, immigration, manpower training, languge and culture, to protect the identity of its people and to promote its economic and social development."
THat is pretty clear. That is not what would have Trudeau spinning. It is the possible weakening of this federal structure that would.

He feared with Distinct Society, which he says in the same speech, which you conveinetly left out, is all well and good, if it is not an interpreative clause, that is it does not sway the interpreting of the Charter. I am in complete agreement with Trudeau (who also believed to govern is to choose), and as Mike has said, if that is Ignatieff's goal we are not behind that. As of yet he has not said that. I am sincerely upset about the prospect for sure, but that does not mean I think we should turn over the party to a weakling either. So let's check this. Ignatieff has stated he also insists on "the affirmation of the primacy of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms as the ultimate expression of the unity and indivisbiliity of Canadian citizenship." That is exactly what should matter to a Trudeau supporter. Now, how would he accomplish this, what would he give QUebec is a GOOD question. That is why Mike has asked it. That is why I am asking it. BUt you are trying to paint us into a corner we are not in. If he wishes to undermine the charter he will lose my support. For now though that does not sound like a likely scenario. It is possible and I comend you for being up in arms about it. To me, that does not mean we must abandon the man but I assure you I will be with you if it is a Meech style thing we are talking about. And I am also very unhappy with this turn of events. If you were to approach this not as a raging fanataic we would be able to agree on very much, but if you are to suggest to me I am unaware or uninterested in Trudeau's legacy you are sorely mistaken as I have shown. How someone who supported Paul Martin's run could possibly have the gall to quote Trudeauvian federalism as a lesson to me is unsettling at best.

However, as you will see in a post from me soon (which I'm sorry will repeat most of this word for word as not many read the comments), I am far from happy with this turn of events. I think the constitituion is complete, though if we are not losing anything there is nottoo much danger, but likely it is a poor scenario. I will say this now and hopefully you can accept it, but I will not reiterate it much more. I, and I think I can say Mike as well, are not of the kind of blind supporters that will now leap to the defense of the whole prospect as absoltuely essential as blogs like "Fuddle Duddle" have shamelessly done. Our positiion is nuanced if you don't like it, well, too bad. I will not be forced into a black and white situation, because your side is not a strong Trudeauvian white anyway. As it is, the defense I give is a personal one, to your personal insinuation that I have broken with Trudeau's vision so sharply which I have shown incorrect. That does not mean that this is all well and good. I can take some and leave the rest because I can dfend it and explain it. For those Ignatieff supporters who now suddenly embrace Meech or whatnot (though to pretend the rest of you are strong centralists is hillarious-tell that to Dion's people or Brison or Rae), I will be at them full tilt. They are wrong in my opinion. I am disgusted to see this being made the issue that decides it, and if there is a "we need to bring Quebec home and Meech was a noble goal" vs. "Quebec is home" dichotomy I am with the latter.

To do as me and Mike are doing I suppose is not simple enough for soundbite? Well too bad. We will proudly row "against the current."

2:55 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

Note, that last quote was meant to be cheesy, not glorious, but also referencing you quoting Trudeau and to point out how this could be the same style.

And Mark obviously the issue for you is not the constitution, you said you have serious terror at him winning months ago when he appeared the strongest federalist (which arguably he still does), so I commend your passion now but obviously and I don't think you would disagree, this is not what has driven you from him. Wha thas, this sense of he is an outside,r I cannot come to terms with. Please don't pretend they are one and the same. I also remind you that this with us or against us talk is pretty divisive considering we will all have to work together. At least accompany it with airtight logic. And the partisan thing, even if you dispute it it is indisputable that what we and Mike are saying bucks that, so please we may disagree about those arguments but they dont' hold much water with us specifically at least.

LASTLY, I sincerely sincerely apologize for the length of my posts, hopefully it is not too maddening.

3:03 PM  
Blogger Sholdice said...

Methinks doth protest too much

3:07 PM  
Blogger Steve said...

Ha ha ha. I hope that is a reference to that torture post where the guy said that. If it is, very good sir. If you are serious, well not so good, as the length didn't change you only noticed when I said so myself, which is hardly a good observation, and you convienantly would have ran out of bold assertions in the face of the strongest case I have yet made. I apologize for the length as it is "unbecoming" of teh silly blog world, but I am proud to have detailed arguments on topics such as, say the fate of the nation.

Alas, God bless you Mark. Do not worry, though perhaps you are confused at my motivations, I will not lose nerve. To paraphrase Trudeau also,

"'the worst is not always certain.' However, to ward it off, we will need a bit of courage."

3:47 PM  
Blogger SteelCityGrit said...

I've missed on this debate to a large extent, and thusly I can respond to all the ridiculousness. I hope it suffices to say Sholdice, you could not be any more disingenuous.

You're not opposing Ignatieff's leadership because Trudeau is spinning in his grave. When Steve and I make such comments, you tell us to stop academizizing the discourse and start feeding the needy.

No one is telling you to base your support on books. You are only reminded of these books as irreputable evidence that Ignatieff has been engaged in Canadian issues before 2005, and only when you suggest absurdly that he was not. The ability to construct argument is not a negative in politics. Besides which, where has Kennedy executed political cunning in this race? Where? He's really the only candidate that has had legitimate points scored off him in the debates (no new ideas on the environment, etc.). His not coming from the academy does not automatically qualify him as a street fight'n politician. We have no evidence to suggest that that is what he is. I've spoken with him personally, I've seen him speak on numerous occasions, I've seen him debate - so the mythologyzing can stop now.

"My ancestors have been in this province since the 1790s, on this continent since the 1640s. Why isn't my "nation" recognized?"

This would be missing the point in the way that Preston Manning misses the point. This can correctly be labelled as English Canadian nationalism. The arguments that run in opposition to distinct society should be predicated on concern for minorities within and without Quebec, as well as on Canada's constitutional integrity. Why not me is not a question English Canada has to ask.

"I'm a Canadian nationalist, a proud Ontarian and a progressive Liberal and I will not stand for this."

"...an American academic interloper"

Whew - If Trudeau wasn't spinning in his grave before! Are we willing to abandon reason so quickly, to bang our tom-toms in the forest? For shame. You've actually brought in to question my patriotism, my pride in country. I almost didn't believe it when I read it. What are you, Bill O'Reilly? I may as well as Kennedy why he doesn't support our troops, or why he hates Canada, when he talks about our fighting a losing battle. BUt I won't, because I believe we can carry out a more sophisticated discourse. If we can't then I don't know why I'm a part of this party.

7:16 AM  

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