Monday, February 26, 2007

Mudsling continue

With many experts still believing that a spring election is likely the Liberals and Conservatives are both trying to push the polls to show they could win a majority government. Unfortunately demanding apologies and mudslinging seem to be more important than actually getting anything accomplished.

The first incident occurred over two provisions in the Anti-Terrorism Act are going to expire on Thursday. The Liberals are going to vote against renewing the provisions tomorrow to legislation they had written and implemented. The net results of this move are that an upcoming inquiry to the Air India bombing will not be able to happen because they will not be able to interview certain witnesses.

Stephan Harper tried introducing to the public record a newspaper report that one of the beneficiaries to the law not being renewed was a Liberal MPs father-in-law. Harper was shouted down and the article never made it into the public record. The Liberals kept demanding an apology. When that didn't work they came up with a government conspiracy that the information was confidential and the only way the reporter could have found out was if the information had been leaked from the PMO office. The reporter who wrote the article was asked about their sources. They had covered the Air India bombing for 15 years and had even written a book. Anyone who followed the trials that closely would know who the key players were. The only new piece of information the reporter had recently uncovered was that this particular individual was related to an MP.

The Liberals moved on to find something new to complain amount. They are now complaining that the Conservative government is trying to obliterate out all memory of the Liberals ever serving in government. The proof was that at a press conference this week with Condoleezza Rice a statue of Former Liberal PM and Nobel Prize Winner (for resolving 1956 "Suez Crisis") Lester Pearson was blocked by a backdrop wall. It turns out that under Chretien and Paul Martin the same statue was routinely blocked with the same backdrop wall for press conferences. It is just too costly and time consuming to move. There is only one time anyone could remember where Martin had the statue moved front and centre during a press conference with George Bush.

Although I am disappointed with the Conservatives for their part in the mudslinging the Liberals are clearly unable to handle it. They have looked like giant cry babies demanding apology after apology while making false accusations. If they don't start to concern themselves with real issues that effect Canadians they will spend another 5 years in the ("penalty box") opposition benches.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Quotes of the week

With a possible election looming the political bantering becomes more and more entertaining. Here are my favourites from last week on Parliament hill.

Garth Turner was thrown out of the Conservative Party in November. After flirting with the Green Party and a vow to fight for the rights of independent MPs he decided to join the Liberal Party. He has been a strong proponent that when members cross the floor there should be a by-election. His first day with the Liberals he declared that he would resign his seat on condition that a by-election be called immediately (the PM has 6 months to call a by-election) and by-elections be called in the two ridings where Liberals crossed the floor to join the Conservative Government.

The House Leader Peter Van Loan greeted Turner to his new position.

"Mr. Speaker, the member for Halton has not been in the caucus for 24 hours and he has already gotten a standing ovation for the concept of him resigning."

The opposition parties have once again tried to get the government to comply with Kyoto. In a committee meeting David McGuinty (brother of the unpopular Ontario Premier Dalton) grilled the Environment Minister if he was in favour of implementing a carbon tax.

The response from John Baird

"We don't sit around the cabinet table dreaming up ways to increase taxes. That's certainly more common in the McGuinty family than it is in the Harper cabinet,"

I expect this week to be just as entertaining.

Quotes of the week

With a possible election looming the political bantering becomes more and more entertaining. Here are my favourites from last week on Parliament hill.

Garth Turner was thrown out of the Conservative Party in November. After flirting with the Green Party and a vow to fight for the rights of independent MPs he decided to join the Liberal Party. He has been a strong proponent that when members cross the floor there should be a by-election. His first day with the Liberals he declared that he would resign his seat on condition that a by-election be called immediately (the PM has 6 months to call a by-election) and by-elections be called in the two ridings where Liberals crossed the floor to join the Conservative Government.

The House Leader Peter Van Loan greeted Turner to his new position.

"Mr. Speaker, the member for Halton has not been in the caucus for 24 hours and he has already gotten a standing ovation for the concept of him resigning."

The opposition parties have once again tried to get the government to comply with Kyoto. In a committee meeting David McGuinty (brother of the unpopular Ontario Premier Dalton) grilled the Environment Minister if he was in favour of implementing a carbon tax.

The response from John Baird

"We don't sit around the cabinet table dreaming up ways to increase taxes. That's certainly more common in the McGuinty family than it is in the Harper cabinet,"

I expect this week to be just as entertaining.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Sextuplets

The sextuplets born in B.C. were a big news story again last week. Two of the babies have passed away and the government took temporary custody of three of them in order to administer blood transfusions. The parents are angry. They have requested an apology from the government. They have also launched a Charter challenge under freedom of religion (the parents are Jehovah's Witnesses)

The response from the public seems to be unanimously in favour of the government intervention. When Boo was in the NICU we had a situation where we were told that she had to undergo a particular medical procedure. When we were informed it also required our consent DW and I did our research and determined that it was not in Boo's best interest. We worked out an alternative form of treatment with her medical team. At one point a Fellow thought he knew better and decided to do what he wanted despite our explicit protests. (DW is convinced I was ready to slug the doctor before the nurse practitioner intervened.) With the benefit of hindsight disagreeing with the doctors and standing up for Boo was what was best for her. Parents are the best advocates for their child's best interests.

If the doctors of the sextuplets have worked with the parents to examine all possible options in the best interest of the children I fully support the governments decision. However, if the doctors were unwilling to consider all forms of treatment available, the parents have a right to be angry.

On a seperate point a growing number of countries have passed legislation or adopted policies that make babies born before 27 weeks or under 2500g an automatic DNR. In one of these countries Boo would not have received any medical treatment. The sextuplets would have been in the same boat. Canadians are lining up to condemn these parents, without a second thought to parents in other countries. What happens if the babies who received the blood transfusions don't make it? How much more grief would the parents face in light of an unwanted life saving treatment that didn't work.