What Happened To Integrity?
Resolve in politics, alas, always seems to collapse in the face of political expedience. When you're a party struggling to unseat your adversary, the country limps along behind. It becomes rather more convenient to fall back on what you know best. In the case of the Liberals, it's prevaricate, promise, plump speeches and produce nothing of any consequence. The promises are iterated, reiterated, and poof! evaporate into lassitude, uncertitude, pressure from corporate interests.
Here's an opportunity to produce some meaningful dialogue to end up with legislation that has some promise to bring both short- and long-range results. The NDP is successfully pressuring a one-time reluctant, currently environmentally-born-again Conservative prime minister to re-think his strategy of denial into actually producing something worthwhile to battle environmental degredation. Climate change is upon us, have declared one and all.
The Liberal party and its new leader continually talk up a storm of condemnation, even in the face of a new reality that has the prime minister agreeable to conferring with opposition leaders in the hopes that environmental issues can finally be advanced by this country in a meaningful way. Instead of joining the discussions for the good of the country Mr. Dion sees fit to buy time for the Liberals, hoping to forestall proceedings.
That's pretty crass by any standards, even the low standards we've come to expect from politicians in general, the Liberal party in particular. At one time, when he was campaigning for leadership of his party Mr. Dion left the indelible impression that he cared about the state of the environment. He issued statements that left the listener thinking he and his party would apprehend partisan quibbling and act on the business of fighting climate change.
A parliamentary sub-committee is set to begin studying the Conservatives' Clean Air Act. This is the very piece of legislation that Stephen Harper was agreeable to having Jack Layton and his NDP environment critic study and initiate suggestions for improvement leading to a mutually-satisfactory effort. Yet it comes to light now that the Liberals' strategy will be to withhold support, delay action until the presentation of the March budget.
That's the Conservative budget to be brought down in March which Mr. Dion, ignorant of what it will hold, has proposed to defeat, and bring down the government. This is the guy who considers himself a champion of the environment, one whose allegiance to the well-being of the country he so loves is of ultimate importance. Guess other issues are just a little more important; like the ascendency of a Liberal government.
"While we're trying to work with the other parties to get something done, the Liberals have shown clearly today that they're doing what they're best at, which is talk, delay and dither when it comes to the environment," NDP environment critic Nathan Cullen stated. Michael Ignatieff, another intellectual star of great integrity stated "Nothing good can result from this marriage of convenience"; obviously an NDP-Conservative co-operative effort meant to advance Canada's environment dilemma isn't good news for the Liberals.
Whatever happened to integrity?
Labels: Politics of Convenience