Friday, January 11, 2008

Maybe Lawrence Martin could write for A/The Daily Show

I thought I had tossed out Monday’s Globe, but while tidying my desk I found it again. That's good because I wanted to share a snippet from Lawrence Martin’s column.

It's naturally behind the subscriber firewall, but in essence he's saying Stephane Dion should firmly shut down the election speculation and make clear he won't force an election until this fall. I won't rehash his argument, suffice to say I disagree and I've already said why I think we should go this spring, before the budget.

What I wanted to share were the last two graphs from Martin's column, what we in journalism call the kicker, because I thought it was pretty hilarious:

"…Their leader has little chance of growth under such circumstances because, instead of serious debate. The politicians engage in gamesmanship and the media focus is limited to horse-race cosmetics.

Mr. Dion should simply issue a statement saying that barring some alarming development, he anticipates no election until the fall at the earliest. That would shut everybody up and give him the time he badly needs to repair the damage of year one.”

Umm, yeah. It's as simple as that.

Everybody who believes that Dion coming out and saying he won't force an election until the fall will result in everybody shutting-up and the media suddenly covering policy, let me know. I've got some lovely swampland in Florida to sell you.

Yeah, I can just see the headlines now…

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Jason Hickman said...

Yeah, I can just see the headlines now…

Rightly or wrongly, you're seeing some of those headlines already.

L Martin is right about one thing (IMO) - Dion does have to say what he's going to do (at least in a general sense) at some point soon.

He probably doesn't have to promise he will for-sure-100% bring down the government as soon as he can, nor does he have to give away all his strategies, whatever they are. But this "maybe we will, maybe we won't" act, after the Autumn Abstensions, won't help.

Anonymous said...


Of note from Lawrence's article is Martha Hall Findlay suggesting that we should wait until the Fall and hope to get a bounce from the spring by-elections.

We disagree on this. Although the only positive one can get from a by-election is more party memberships sold and money to fight a general election another day.

BTW, if you are in town, MHF's campaign office opens this weekend. Hope to see you at the kick-off.

Koby said...

Dion is going to try to equate the Conservatives and Republicans. That being the case, it is clear that the fall is the best time to go. The Liberals should try to force an election as close to the US election as possible. They could then piggyback on what the Democrats are saying. I said the same thing back in 2004.

ottlib said...


The Liberals need to be very careful in forcing an election.

If they do not do it when the conditions are right the Conservatives will win because there is no real desire to kick them out at present.

In all liklihood they would win another minority government but it would in effect be a working majority as such a victory would put the Liberals into absolute turmoil.

We saw the BS after the Outrement loss, just imagine what it would be like after a loss of a general election.

We could look forward to another at least two years of Conservatives in government while the Liberals attempted to get their shit together AGAIN.

Although, I do not like to see the Liberals propping up this government the alternative I describe above is unacceptable to me.

So Lawrence Martin has a point. Allow Mr. Dion to recover from a bad year and allow the government to become more stale before putting it out of our misery.

Burton, Formerly Kingston said...

OttLib, I totally agree with your post, the problem I see, is can the LPC continue with the rhetoric of the CPC is destroying the country while at the same time sitting on their hands till the fall.
I think they can but they have to cut the rhetoric back to a dull roar, like the CPC did over the spring 2005 budget of PMPM by saying the budget while not what we consider the best way to go, is not as bad as it could be and we will abstain, vice the LPC recent statements of making demands/threats and then sitting on their hands