Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Pretzel logic by grade schoolers in the G&M

I think yesterday must have been take your children to work day at Canada's National Newspaper, and the editorial board decided to let the youngins write one of the editorials. That's the only way I can think of to explain the pretzel logic in the editorial I read today over breakfast (a fruit explosion muffin from Tim Horton's, delish).

Called "The Liberals' Warning" (access it here to avoid the subscriber firewall) the thesis of the piece is the Conservatives are in the saddle now, and even though it's a minority the Liberals had better just shut-up and take it like a man.

That's a stupid argument that makes little sense, ignores the fact that this is a minority, most Canadians voted for parties directly opposed to the Conservative platform, and the job of the opposition is, well, to oppose, but whatever. It's not a new argument, at least from the lips of Stephen Harper and Conservative bloggers that have drunk his kool aid.

No, what is silly is the logic the kids of the Globe and Mail's editorial writers use in their attempt to back-up their flimsy thesis. Their argument seems to be the minority Liberals fed the culture of entitlement by trying to push through their own agenda without a mandate in the last Parliament, and so were rightly thrashed at the polls. The Conservatives are in government now, and even though they only have a minority too, if the Liberals don't let them do whatever they want the Liberals will just be continuing to feed that culture of entitlement. It doesn't matter most Canadians don't support their policies; they eked out a minority so deal with it.

This is from the same people who scant months ago were writing editorials reminding the Liberals they were in minority, had to work with the opposition, find support on each bill, compromise, and so on. I guess compromise is only for Liberals though?

The fact is the Liberal minority government did work with the opposition parties, and the Conservatives will have to do the same. Harper does not have a mandate from the people to do much of what he's proposing, and he does need to work with the opposition, and compromise, if he's to get anything accomplished.

That's not obstructionism. It's called parliamentary democracy. Perhaps, children of the G&M's editorial writers, that will be covered in next week's social studies class.

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Emily said...

Excellent post! As the tight,very light agenda and permanent election tactics mode of the Harper government continue, Canadians will be reminded of why they DIDN'T vote for the conservatives. It will cost, taking on the folks who buy paper by the ton and ink by the barrel. And thanks, by the way, for the post on the King Edward Accord.

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imspartacus said...

The Cons plan is starting to flush out some interesting twists... Harpo squeezes the messengers, clamps down on access. The gals and guys in the trenches start up in arms, banging on doors. Meanwhile, back at the Printing Castle, the desk jockey bosses nod and strategize. They come up with the idea that to get a few crumbs they better serve up some cake for the King. If HE is so inclined and comforted by our tone and missives, they cluck, maybe we too can get an exclusive -- like shots of the PM pinning roses uncomfortably on wheel-chair bound seniors.
If your experience is anything like my experience in the MSM, this storyline is familiar, perhaps dramatized for those with short attention spans. On the wet coast here, the comfortable lot who make the multitude of decisions in the newspaper room creep towards the soft and conservative side with each year of seniority. Columnists who shat their pants covering a baseball game in SF in '89 and was the first to cry 'mommy' when he stepped onto the safe tarmac of Bahrain during the first Gulf War, seem to think everyone should be satisfied with the 'rich-get-richer' program planned by the Tories. One of the uppermost management spent more than a decade living in a subsidized co-op despite pulling down $80,000-120,000 salary. No room for the poor, working or otherwise, in their papers.
Harpo wants the Beast (MSM) to tow the line -- he knows what's best for all, especially in this short-term gov't. He's gearing towards getting his Liberal-lite actors a full-five year gig, where we'll see the real deal. David Frum and Karl Rove all rolled into one.
That's today's conspiracy theory in the flesh. Back to your regular viewing...