Jack Layton’s “Indignation”

Eau Debasement (with just a hint of moustache).

Seems the Tories have come up with a cunning plan to defuse whatever public anger and criticism that may exist over the extended winter recess — they’re canceling March break on Parliament Hill and another week of scheduled for mid-April.

It’s direct challenge to the opposition as any changes to the calendar require consent of all parties.

“We take it for granted that they will agree,” a senior government official told The Globe. “Anything less would be uncivilized.”

Heh. Very clever indeed.

A Rogue Opinion

I don’t think anyone could accuse Sean Holman (a local political commentator and investigative journalist behind “Public Eye Online”) of being a “Con spinner” by any means, so his opinion on this weekend’s anti-prorogation rallies was, for obvious reasons, quite interesting.

“Many of those criticizing the proroguing of parliament are less interested in democracy and more interested in capturing the kind of undemocratic power that comes with a majority government.”

A Question of Democracy?

Michael Ignatieff speaking at the anti-prorogation rally on Parliament Hill yesterday. “This is a demonstration that shows that Canadians understand their democracy, care for their democracy and if necessary, will fight for their democracy,” Ignatieff told the crowd.

Well, we shall see about that… I’m still inclined towards a more cynical disposition when it comes to Canadians by and large understanding their “democracy” let alone caring all that much for its parliamentary procedures or partisan political machinations.

Why, for example, do all these protesters earnestly shouting “Back to work!” accept without question the adjournment of parliament for a full two and a half months during the summer each year? Perhaps they’re unaware that parliament actually sits for just 136 days out of the entire year. Or if not, do they presume that government isn’t “working” for the remaining 63 percent of the year?

As H.L. Menken famously said, “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard.”

Update: Video from the rally in Victoria.

From today’s Times-Colonist report of the event:

About 1,500 people gathered at Centennial Square, from teens to seniors and Greens to Conservatives.

Victoria organizer Craig Ashbourne, a 26-year-old sociology student, told the crowd the numbers of people of all political stripes drawn together after only two weeks of Internet postings and e-mails is proof something profound is happening in Canadian politics.

“And people are coming up a little bit inspired,” said Ashbourne after the event. “They are talking about what we can do here and [they’re] not just going to sit back and wait for the next election.”

Speakers included Victoria-area NDP MP Denise Savoie of the NDP and Liberal MP Keith Martin, along with University of Victoria political scientist Dennis Pilon, who said he knew of many Conservative voters who were offended by the move.

Whether the Dear Leader will be impressed by the fact that 0.5% of folks here in Victoria were sufficiently frustrated with his government’s (in)action to turn out to a protest rally is, I would suggest, doubtful to say the least.

Late Night with Oi Polloi

British punk band Oi Polloi at the Katacombs in Montreal last week with a couple of songs dedicated to Stephen Harper. Talk about playing to the crowd…

NSFW Warning: Video contains harsh language that some weenies may find offensive. Viewer discretion is advised.

RMR: Prorogation Backlash?

From last night’s show: “Yes, we are apathetic, but the minute anyone tries to use our apathy against us… suddenly we start to care big time.”

I’m not sure if I can agree with that, although it would be nice to be proven wrong. I suspect that Harper won’t pay much of a penalty for having closed down parliament, especially if, as has been suggested, his pending legislation is fast-tracked when it resumes in March.