Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I wrote this yesterday.

I'm writing this post on Tuesday, with the expectation that Randall will be ranting about this very subject tomorrow on One Minute Moore. So I am planning on holding off on publishing it until I let him go on tomorrow. It's rare that Randall rants about the same thing more than once in a short time, but recently he voiced his anger over the fact that anyone was even thinking about excluding Elizabeth May from the Canadian leadership debates. And now, she has in fact been excluded. And I assume he's likely even more furious about the subject today. And so am I. This is a very stark reminder of Stephen Harper's need for control, and yet another example of the reasons Canada has to vote him out come October. Stephen Harper says that if Elizabeth May is allowed to participate in the debate, he himself will not show up. He is so adamant about it that he convinces CTV to exclude her, as though it's totally a network decision and not a political one at all. And you have to ask yourself why. Why is Stephen Harper so worried about the presence of a woman whose party has but one seat in the House of Commons?

And then, this morning (yesterday morning if you're reading this) I read a quote from Elizabeth May saying that the whole debate was an old-boys club. Four male party leaders debating on a network run by all men, and that she was excluded for being a woman. And I thought to myself "jesus, no." No, Elizabeth May! Don't say stuff like that! You are NOT helping yourself out! Playing the "I'm excluded because I'm a woman" card is so...lame. And so wrong. I think her exclusion has nothing whatsoever to do with her being a woman. Rather, it has to do with her being...competent. Stephen Harper knows that he can whip Stephane Dion in an English-language debate. Whether Dion makes more sense than Harper does is immaterial. People can't get past Dion's command of English. Gilles Duceppe, in many ways, is irrelevant, and so too is Jack Layton. (Layton's resistance to May, one would assume, is simply because he thinks that any votes she gets will be taken from the NDP.)

And so that appears to be the real reason. Sure, Harper is crying foul, like the Liberals and Green party have some kind of deal cooked up where they will gang up against him. And two against one is unfair! Wait, isn't he supposed to be the hard-nosed, tough guy leader? The one Canadians say best exemplifies leadership characteristics in poll after poll? (By default, I can only assume.) So can't he take on two opponents at once? Aren't all the candidates going to go after him? So what is it? And I say it's the environment. Because this is the single biggest area where the Green party and the Liberals can most gang up on the Conservatives. Because Stephen Harper, for all intents and purposes, has absolutely no environmental policy. Dion can beat Harper when it comes to a discussion on the environment. But then there's that language barrier. So the single person most likely to make Harper look foolish at this debate is Elizabeth May. And so Harper has gone out of his way to exclude her from the debate for that very reason. And CTV has been complicit.

I'll be publishing this after Randall's commentary, just to see how much the two of us agree. I imagine we agree a fair amount.

OK, I have now heard his comment. And he mentioned this only briefly, except to say that Jack Layton proved himself to be just another politician by wanting to exclude May from the debates. And to make the point that this "ganging up" business is BS - witness the Reform Party and the Conservatives taking on Chretien as a team years ago. Anyway, Elizabeth May is fighting this in court, and lord I hope she wins. Go for it! Just quit saying it's because you're a woman when you know it's beacause you're good at your job.

No comments:

Post a Comment