Wednesday, May 4, 2011

For Die-Hards, Bloc Collapse as Painful as Referendum Loss

Ever since Monday night, there's been a lot of tears and hand-wringing among committed sovereignists, who watched the painful implosion of a hitherto beloved separatist institution.

Indeed, for separatists, watching the Bloc Quebecois going down to ignominious defeat was probably as painful as watching your favourite boxer being trashed for several rounds before collapsing to the canvas only to suffer the inevitable and humiliating ten-count, followed by the referee's emphatic signal, that the fight is over,
K/O... Kaput!....The fat lady has sung!

It was like referendum night all over again..

Forgive my hyperbolic metaphor, but I'm feeling mighty smug and self-satisfied.

I don't usually take pleasure at someone else's misfortune, but in this case, I daresay that I'll make an exception.
And so, I'll take some time to revel in the Bloc's wipeout as well as time to celebrate a majority government.

A special treat for me is the reaction of the you-know-whos, like Louis Prefontaine who is frothing at the mouth in rage and humiliation. Read Une race de ti-counes{FR}  SWEET!

Some sovereignists are trying to spin the Bloc defeat as something positive for the separatist movement, but let's face it, four years of a majority Conservative government must be as inviting as a trip to the dentist for root canal surgery. Read this drivel,  Un excellent pas vers l’Indépendance{FR}

Truthfully, I didn't care whether it was a Liberal or Conservative majority, as long as the separatists were dealt out of the political equation.

Ironically, with almost 24% of the vote in Quebec, the Bloc won just 5% of the seats.
For twenty years the Bloc has punched above its weight, earning two-thirds of the seats with about forty percent of the vote. Payback's a bitch!

The Bloc's presence in Ottawa underlined the fragility of our Parliamentary democracy. Those Quebeckers who decided to mock Canada by electing secessionists, put an enormous amount of pressure on an institution designed to work with elected officials who want the best for the country, not the worst.

Luckily our democracy withstood the test and ultimately the sovereignists realized that even with a forced minority government, federalists would not give in to separatist demands.

Such was the humiliating rout that the Bloc will likely disappear forever, the experiment to promote sovereignty in Ottawa, a failed gambit.
Without an elected leader and without party status, there is no basis to continue, certainly in consideration of the choice that Quebec voters made.
Looking at four years of roaming the political wilderness, it will be next to impossible to keep the Bloc brand alive. I'm not even sure they can pay off their campaign expenses, considering that the federal subsidy will drop by over 40%. If they're depending on the generosity of Quebeckers to help them pay off the debt, they may as well declare bankruptcy now!

So like every Canadian federalist, I'm glad to see them gone and gone forever.

It would be an error to believe that the rejection of the Bloc is an utter rejection of the sovereignty option. After a 20 year experiment in pushing secession in Ottawa, with zero tangible results, many 'soft' nationalists decided that it was just time to pack in the Ottawa adventure.

But while the Bloc's demise is not fatal to the sovereignty movement, it does deal the secessionists a painful body blow.
It signals that the Parti Quebecois is no shoe-in to replace the faltering provincial Liberals, whose franchise is well-past the 'use-by' date. Like their federal counterparts, the word 'Liberal' is toxic in French Quebec, but it doesn't mean that the Peekists are a natural replacement. Quebeckers have shown that they have no problem with rejecting 'all-of-the-above' and going down a different road.

 Gilles Duceppe's political career is  over, I don't see him enjoying any significant role (other than an elder statesman) in the sovereignty movement after this abject failure. The collapse of the Bloc will be pinned on him by hard-liners and the only  political role left  for him is to wear the goat-horns. His political star is eclipsed.

In spite of a brave face, the Parti Quebecois and Pauline Marois in particular are terrified of what happened election night.
Quebeckers have the told politicians that they were tired of the status quo and likely that will play out in Quebec's next provincial election.

For the Liberal and the Peekists, all I can say is....Be afraid, be very afraid.

29 comments:

  1. Indeed yesterday was a happy day ... ^^

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  2. Whatever comes of this turn of events, at least I enjoyed watching the cry-fest at Bloc HQ the other night. I wanted to dip cookies in their tears.

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  3. "For the Liberal and the Peekists, all I can say is....Be afraid, be very afraid."

    That us so true, I gave a feeling a Legault and who maybe even Deltell could get the call. It could be citizen if the province may want some fresh blood, not the same old, same old, of Marois/Charest.

    And lastly, the bloc gone makes me so happy, Duceppe was so dishonest it's not even funny. We are better without that Marxist bunch of blamers(slkways someone else's fault)

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  4. Pourquoi j'aime les British mais déteste les canadians:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/may/03/canada-stephen-harper-american-politics

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  5. So... you would have loved the Canadians under Ignatieff?

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  6. The BQ only won 4 more seats than me and I didn't even run!

    Honestly, I think any third party could win in Quebec during the next provincial election. If the NDP started a provincial party today they would probably lead in the poles without any candidates. That guy who was considering starting that center-right party just got all the indication he needs that he should make it official. Quebeckers are tired of fear mongering governments and tired of the threat of separation. Any party that steps and says we can move forward for a better, but still French, Quebec, can win.

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  7. Seriously, come in now, wake up. The NDP are not much different than the Bloc heads. They are a big government, pro union, tax and spend party. They support the racist, bigoted anti-English language laws of Quebec such as bill 101.

    The uniformed clowns who voted for the Block heads for the last several elections just voted for another opposition party that is just about as despicable and corrupt. The great thing is you are in opposition and the Cons have a majority and really don’t have to listen to Quebec period any longer. This makes me smile.

    You have voted for a bunch of clowns who know nothing about debt reduction, taxation, how government functions period. You should all be ashamed of yourselves in Quebec. Are you all that brain dead?

    The worst thing is we have to pay all of you clowns (58) over $150,000 yearly, just sick. All this for a bad comedy show daily on Parliament hill. This should be fun to watch. NOT!!!

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  8. une chose est sur, le statu quo est mort.

    Good thing.

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  9. I can't believe people gloating at Quebec over a majority Harper government. Are you kidding me? A redneck screwing up our country is acceptable because he'll screw the Quebecoisover at the same time? Do you people even listen to yourselves?

    As for Harper, I do think he's a redneck that wants to Americanize our country but I'll reserve any further judgement until I see what he does with a majority government. Not optimistic though.

    "Pourquoi j'aime les British mais déteste les canadians"

    Cool! Want to help me build a welcome sign for the prince and his new wife when they visit Quebec?

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  10. What has more seats than the Bloc Québécois?
    - My car

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  11. Redneck, wow, you read listen too much to the CBC. Harper is good news, forcing the bloc out, it brings forth the discussion of left and right wing positions. We are a bit more normal in this country following this.
    I hope one day people on the left will drop the insults, redneck come on, being conservative and from out west is not being red neck, if you think so, you need to travel more buddy.

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  12. I'm from Calgary but thanks. I never said Harper was bad for the country. I was implying that people don't seem to give a crap about how Harper does as long as he screws Quebec over (my bad, phrased it wrong earlier I guess). I then said that I'm not optimistic about him because to me he seems to want to Americanize Canada. Up to him to prove me wrong. If he does well I'll vote Conservative next time but until he proves himself I don't trust him. I'm not advocating bad-mouthing him and I'm not advicating that we follow him blindly. I'm advocating that we wait and see what he does before we belt out our satisfaction or discontent, which to me seems like a perfectly reasonnable notion.

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  13. Watching the Bloc utterly destroyed and obliterated was a *delight*! Really a moment to sit down, savior and enjoy on the couch while eating a bowl of popcorn (I nearly cheered when at one point their projected seat count dropped to *1*). I'm a bit disappointed they even got those 4 seats, I wanted to see them humiliated and get zero seats. Ah well, chances are I still will see that, when those 4 BQ elected officials either quit or drop out to become independents. Maybe they'll even join the NDP, who knows?

    Now if only we could see the same thing happen to the Parti Quebecois. Wouldn't THAT be a day to celebrate! Unlikely, sure, but I can still dream.

    My take on the demise of the Bloc is this: It's going to create the perfect storm for re-electing the PQ and pushing sovereignty to the front. Harper owes Quebec no favors, in fact quite the opposite, he may very well snub Quebec. The NDP won't be able to spend 24/7 moaning and bitching about Quebec's special needs in parliament (oh, the humanity). And so, the PQ will cry foul, that the Canadian government is against Quebec, and there is no one in Ottawa defending Quebec's interests, blah, blah, blah....bottom line: the PQ is the only party left to defend Quebec.

    So I predict the PQ will be back in at the end of Charest's term. If not, and the PQ as a party are destroyed like the Bloc in 2012-13, well, I'll be ecstatic to be wrong!

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  14. ...to everyone who is anti-labour-type government:

    RELAX! Layton is only the opposition, not the governing party.

    To embolden his credibility, Layton is going to have to deliver, and good luck to him. The fact the so-called levelling of the middle ground has happened, please be reminded of the struggles the right endured for a decade until the Unite the Right movement manifested and organized. Now it's time for the left to undergo the same process, and this may take a while because the NDP will resist amalgamation now that they gained the opposition.

    If Harper loses popularity, you can be sure Layton will fight tooth and nail for the throne, crown, and sceptor. I think Layton will lose a lot of lustre if he can't deliver the cakes and ale he promised.

    If Harper continues proroguing parliament and other assorted shenanigans, he'll likely fall like a stone the next time unless he again is the best of a bad lot.

    If there is anyone to blame for this election result, it's squarely on the shoulders of Michael Ignatieff. He was far too preoccupied becoming the Liberal King he forgot he has to gain the favour of his subjects, a.k.a. the voters.

    Indeed, the Conservatives played dirty pool by knocking his having been in the U.S. for about 34 years before returning, but the simple fact of the matter is and was the NDP hit him with the knockout punch--his absentee rate in Parliament was 70%. That's not exactly conducive of a dedicated leader. Had I been rooting for the Liberals myself, I would have thought twice having learned that shocking bit of information.

    For a time a couple of years ago I steadily watched The Agenda with Steve Paikin (who moderated the English debate last month) on TV Ontario. The Liberal brand was a topic of discussion one evening and Paikin showed segments in parliament with Ignatieff flirting with someone across the floor in opposition while his leader (the deposed S. Dion) was addressing the house, and on another occasion, a time clock was used showing the cabinet members surrounding Dion rising immediately and cheering their leader's speech at its conclusion, but it took Ignatieff 8 seconds to finally rise to his feet and gingerly start applauding.

    Taking the above circumstances into account, the nasty Conservative commercial about Ignatieff not coming back to Canada for us is not that far-fetched. It did have credibility. Ignatieff claimed there were commercials insulting his heritage. I don't remember seeing any of those, and if there were any, that would have been out of line.

    Had Ignatieff shown more dedication, he may have helped himself. The Conservative spin doctors certainly dug up the serious dirt on Iggy, but that's politics, and sadly, the Conservatives have reverted to dirty tactics. I don't think it's very "Canadian" to do this, but it seems to work and no thanks to the political spin doctors starting this tactic in "Ignatieff's country", it has come up here!

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  15. ...to Jason the Montreal Anglo: Just who do you like then if you don't like Harper? I just concluded my ode to Ignatieff's downfall, and good riddance to him based on his past behaviour.

    Jack Layton is a great social democrat, came out with textbook policies for this election, but being in that lower part of the remaining sliver called the middle class, had he won, Layton would have picked my pocket to pay off the special interest groups we all pay for but benefit little from. I'm old enough to remember Bob Rae and his assault on the middle class in Ontario, so if Rae runs in Ontario, there will be some red in Quebec, the Maritimes and Manitoba. Ontario? Blue, blue, blue! Nous nous souvenons the politics of Bob Rae. Maybe he'll win in the university and low class districts, but the Liberal Alimo, a.k.a. the amalgamated City of Toronto? You now see it has been invaded. Remember the Alimo, because it will never be the same again! ...at least not for several years to come.

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  16. "Pourquoi j'aime les British mais déteste les canadians: "

    So I guess you hate the people of Beauce as well?

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  17. I've always wondered what would happen in Quebec if they finally got their independence. What would become of the 45 to 49% that didn't want it. Would they hold another referendum within Quebec over time? Just curious as to how that would play out. I really don't believe that a little less than half of the population in an Independent Quebec would roll over & accept it. Any thoughts?

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  18. "What would become of the 45 to 49% that didn't want it."

    Ils se soumetraient aux régles de la démocratie tout simplement.Quelle question idiote.

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  19. Hey Press 9,

    What an idiotic answer. See what is happening with the separatists? They LOST the referenda TWICE. Did/do they simply follow the rules of democracy? Are you kidding me?

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  20. ...to anon on MAY 4 @ 8:44 PM:

    If 50% + 1 vote for separation, that's it! Premier John James "Goldilocks" Charest endorsed that formula before finally winning in 2003. He had to suck up, as usual, to the "soft" separatists. If this comes to pass, then I don't know what the remaining 50% - 1 is going to do. It inevitably will cause a plenitude of unrest, but that won't be Canada's problem.

    As a real Canadian, living in a part of Canada that will always be Canada, I would only selectively allow certain Quebecers back into Canada through partition. That would be West Central Montreal and the West Island through the peninsula laying between the St. Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers to the Ontario border. That "Peninsula" would include towns like Hudson, Rigaud, Vaudreuil and Coteau. I think including the little patches of Anglophones living in Laval (Chomedey and Ste-Dorothée), Greenfield Park, St-Lambert and St-Hubert is a bit too complicated, but maybe something could be worked out.

    Maybe if they can colonize Anticosti Island and accept that as a sovereign state, I'd entertain that to keep Quebec in Canada, but if not, Quebec and its debt is on its very own. They would have to also pay reparations for damages caused to Canada, not to mention assume their part of the Canadian debt. If they say "non", then they'll never be a part of NAFTA or any other free trade agreement as unanimous consent is required, and Canada should and would say "no" until they pay their reparations.

    Of course, anybody who studied what the Treaty of Versailles cost Germany in reparations after WWI knows how burdensome that is, but that's the price of freedom. Oh, gee, what a tyrannous country Canada has been on Quebec. Is the cost of freedom worth the price for the same amount of French Quebec now enjoys? I can imagine those Vigile morons saying it is.

    Those René Lévesque dollars won't be worth the paper they're printed on in the event of separation and even less with subsequent partition.

    To the separatist trolls and their meaningless contributions to this blog, you're playing a very dangerous game, France won't help you (they have too much debt of their own to help themselves), and you'll be all on your own. Bonne chance...you'll truly need it!

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  21. "What would become of the 45 to 49% that didn't want it."

    Let's see, while Quebec is STILL very much a part of Canada (i.e. today and now) Pauline Marois has promised to create Quebec Citizenship. So who is entitled to Quebec Citizenship? Long-time residents living in Quebec? No. Hard working people who contribute taxes to Quebec? No. Persons who were born and raised in Quebec, or well educated, or has a valued profession to offer, such as a doctor or engineer? No. Can you guess what it is...?

    Quebec Citizenship (within Canada no less!) is ONLY entitled to those who SPEAK FRENCH. Don't speak French...in the Soup Nazi voice: NO QUEBEC CITIZENSHIP FOR YOU!

    Ahh, and what does this citizenship entitle you? Well, the right to vote in elections for one thing. And people claim it's absurd to compare the Quebec situation to Poland or Vienna in the 1930's.

    I fear to ask how Quebec might solve this "problem" of people who don't belong in their new country. Sounds ridiculous, yep, but if you look at history it sounded just as ridiculous in places like Poland, or Bosnia and elsewhere before the violence started.

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  22. "They LOST the referenda TWICE. Did/do they simply follow the rules of democracy?"

    Troy, for me the most telling part of Parizeau's 1995 speech was not the "money and ethnic vote" bit, but it was when he said "on se crache dans les mains et on recommence". In the same speech, he also mentioned that they shouldn't wait 15 years this time around, but proceed immediately. In a recent interview he admitted that had he known that Bouchard was going to shelve the referendum project, Parizeau would have stayed on as premier.

    So what kind of respect for democracy is this? People have just spoken, they turned in their verdict so to say, and here he is, effectively saying: "I don't recognize this, nor the 1980 result. We'll keep throwing it at them until they give us a decision we want". It doesn't sound like respecting the will of the people at all.

    It's rather obvious that Parizeau's goal was to build a kingdom for him to be the king. The whole thing was about his ambition, not about the people of Quebec, who'd be "trapped like lobsters in boiling water" for all he cared.

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  23. @ the French Canadian known as Press 9,

    HaHaHaHa!...the political career of your beloved dear leader, Gilles Duceppe, is finished! And the Bloc is destroyed! It is a great week for Canada!

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  24. Press 9,

    ‘Ils se soumetraient aux régles de la démocratie tout simplement.Quelle question idiote.’

    Come on, you can’t be serious. Your response reeks of hypocrisy. The seppie mantra is ‘Do as we say, not as we do’. Your exalted leader Parazit, was the biggest Fascist douche bag you guys have spawned. The people say NO, he spits in our hands and restarts the Ego driven seppie machine once again. Seppies tactics are Fascist in nature and have never, ever respected the democratic process and the will of the people.

    I understand that you must feel a little impotent now that your pit-bull Gilles ‘the Bully’ Douceptive has fallen, and he can no longer sodomize Canadians on your behalf. But I’m sure P. Marois and your seppie hatred will comfort you nonetheless.

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  25. ...to adski @ 8:13am: Did this epiphany just come to mind this morning, a full 15½ years after the 1995 Referendum?

    I admit I had to sleep on what Parizeau said because [former Trudeau lieutenant] Marc Lalonde on one network and (former Ontario Premier-turned-federal Liberal leader wannabe) Bob Rae on the other network were both convinced Parasite was drunk at the pulpit right in front of a big fleur-de-lys that made him look like a ram with the tail of a jackass on his head!

    About 6-7 weeks after that personal attack on those not of his ilk, while on some political junket in Calgary, Parasite specifically placed the blame on the Jews, Greeks and Italians for thwarting his master plan become the rightful heir, King Jacques I of Quebec. Somehow though, I'd still myself like to crown that fascist sonofabitch that those of his ilk refer to simply as "Monsieur". I have another term in mind, and you can imagine what I'd crown him with!

    Now he's talking it up how he never would have given up the mantle had Bouchard made his intentions clear re shelving the referendum. B.S.!!! He didn't have a choice! Bouchard was miles ahead of that old warhorse, was ten times the orator, and could have put Parasite's fat head in a guillotine at that time had he chosen to do so.

    It took over 20 years for those Bloc-heads to finally realize these M.P.s were as effective as concrete blocks in parliament, and now all they do is get gold-plated pensions for the rest of their lives. Although he may not do so, Duceppe can now take over the PQ after the memebership finds a reason to eat Marois, and like death, taxes and eclipses, they inevitably will, and after five years as an MNA, he'll be able to start on yet another gold-plated pension. He can even vegetate as a back bencher or opposition member, just like in Ottawa. He'd need 15 more years in Quebec City to get his full pension, but while sitting on his ass in the Assembly, he'll still be getting his full Ottawa pension. All told, Easy Street for Duceppe. I guess he's not that stupid after all! Just a big leech, and the government is full of those.

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  26. Connaissez-vous l'histoire du légendaire oiseau,
    le phoenix?

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  27. "Connaissez-vous l'histoire du légendaire oiseau,
    le phoenix?"

    Do you know the difference between a myth and reality?

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  28. @Jazzy Jason

    Savez-vous qu'il est possible d'illustrer la réalité en utilisant un mythe?

    "J'aime un langage hardi, métaphorique, plein d'images." -Voltaire

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  29. "Savez-vous qu'il est possible d'illustrer la réalité en utilisant un mythe?"

    The reality, yes ouf course. The reality is that 2 referendums were lost. The Phoenix has been pronounced KIA twice now and you refuse to accept it so permit me to respond with my own metaphor to stop beating a dead horse.

    And now, never have I seen Gilles Duceppe look so defeated. And the becking call of mister super-seperatist Parizeau and her highness Pauline emploring people to vote BQ if they believe in Qc as a country, and the public responds with its lowest support for the BQ ever. Yup, the Phoenix is just ripping through the air.

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