Jim Travers of the Toronto Star has an article today entitled “Liberals look on as Conservatives Vandalize Canada”. I couldn’t agree more. Interesting that Jim Travers would select the word “vandalism” to describe the conduct of Stephen Harper, as that the exact word that Michael Ignatieff used in a speech in Toronto on September 18, 2008 during the last election when he stated:
“We're here to talk about the Liberal plan to invest in infrastructure and rebuild the ties that bind our country together.
We're here to talk about leadership in tough economic times.
Nous sommes ici pour parler du leadership quand le climat économique s'annonce orageux.
We cannot allow Stephen Harper to define what strong leadership is in this country.
Look at his record.
Harper is the man who broke his promise to millions of Canadian investors when he wiped out income trust.
This isn't leadership – it's vandalism.”
So what has Michael Ignatieff done about Stephen Harper’s income trust vandalism, apart from talk about it when it suits his purposes? In the last two years has Michael Ignatieff done ANYTHING to reveal Harper’s lie about tax leakage, or to expose the fraud about tax leakage that leaves out 38% of the taxes that Canadians actually pay on income trusts? No.
Has Ignatieff informed Canadians about the fact that Harper’s proof of tax leakage tool the form of 18 pages of blacked out documents? No. Has Ignatieff told Canadians that Harper’s income trust tax has seen over $80 billion of Canadian companies acquired by foreigners like Abu Dhabi Energy and Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka Shing who will pay NO TAXES on these companies’ earning, whereas Canadians were happily paying those taxes, and as a result over $1.2 billion in annual taxes in being lost per annum to solve a problem that was falsely alleged by Harper to be costing Canadians only half that amount? No.
Has Ignatieff done anything to reveal who the lobbyists were behind the income trust tax and what their nefarious end purposes were? No.
Has Ignatieff lifted a finger to support and give voice and visibility to a solution to the income trust mess, known as the Marshall Savings Plan solution, that knowledgeable people like Diane Francis of the Financial Post call “brilliant”? No.
And why do you suppose that is? Why is Ignatieff allowing Harper to get away with the vandalism involving income trusts, while feigning concern about the issue when its suits his purposes? Why has Ignatieff chosen to do none of the thousands of things he could have done about the income trust vandalism? Is it because Ignatieff is in bed with the very same pack of vandals that put Harper up to this shameful and fraudulent act? Hard to conclude otherwise
Second piece of evidence.....Jim Travers of the Toronto Star writes
Liberals look on as Conservatives Vandalize Canada
August 14, 2010
OTTAWA—This country has a problem. It has a ruling party that twists the truth and an Official Opposition that can’t, or won’t, straighten it out.
This summer’s oddly hot topic is one example. Gutting the census is nothing less than another Conservative act of public vandalism. Wagging an angry finger is nothing more than another empty Liberal gesture.
Opinion polls reflect that repeating pattern. For more than four years now Canadians have consistently told pollsters they don’t support Conservatives and don’t trust Liberals.
One unlikely way to end that impasse is for Stephen Harper to come clean about what he doesn’t like about Canada and how Conservatives are changing it by stealth and increment. Another is for Michael Ignatieff to screw Liberal courage to the sticking point and declare enough is enough.
Harper owes that explanation. Since taking control of a universally admired country in 2006, the Prime Minister has been altering Canada without a majority mandate or clear statement of ultimate purpose.
Ignatieff has a duty to oppose that strategy. Since replacing Stephane Dion, the Liberal leader has threatened elections and fumed at Conservatives while drawing flexible lines in this capital’s blowing sand.
Harper’s determination and Ignatieff’s vacillation are connected by opportunities seized by Conservatives and missed by Liberals. Without significant resistance or the debate democracy demands, the Prime Minister has consistently advanced policies that are at best controversial and at worst corrosive.
Too often Harper manages to tip-toe dubious schemes past a dozing electorate. While the nation slept, Conservatives grossly abused the budget process with an omnibus bill bulging with unrelated plans to sell the public stake in the atomic energy sector and, even more remarkably, to relax environmental regulations just when the world is reeling from the BP oil spill.
As always, there’s more. There was little discussion of military priorities and less outcry over public safeguards in the sole-sourced contract committing Canada to spend some $16 billion replacing CF-18 fighters. Much was muttered and nothing done to stop Conservatives silencing diverse civil society voices by attacking Montreal’s non-partisan Rights and Democracy and stripping core funding from the umbrella agency has advised federal governments on overseas development for more than forty years.
To Conservative credit, Harper routinely gets the best of a fissured Parliament and an Official Opposition in disarray. The result is a country being forced marched to an unknown destination.
To Liberal shame, serial leaders, with the notable exception of Stephane Dion’s quixotic defence of a carbon tax, have failed to find principled places to stand. In trying every which way to regain power they continue to fall far short of convincing Canadians that a once great party would now gladly risk its hegemony to protect the national interest.
No party or leader willingly commits political suicide. Instead, they lurk in the shadows, weighing odds and waiting for a promising moment to strike. Still, parties risk everything when what’s good for them is seen to be more important than what’s good for the country.
Ignatieff knows that Liberals have taken too long to discard the tattered cloak of Canada’s natural governing party. Liberals are proving equally slow in grasping that an opposition afraid to oppose is an empty vessel voters will fill with blame when the ruling party goes too far.
Conservatives go too far when they trample widely shared Canadian values by twisting truth to fit narrow ideology. Liberals will go nowhere until they are willing to risk something straightening it out.
James Travers' column appears Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Posted by Brent Fullard at 10:19 AM