Monday, February 20, 2006

brison leadership blog

the moment you have all been waiting for … the release of a brison leadership blog!

a friend of mine sent this along to me and i figured i should post it on my blog… considering liblogs has not added it to its blog role yet!!!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

more political shenanigans from harper

the toronto star is reporting that tomorrow prime minister stephen harper (I die a little inside every time i write/say prime minister in front of his name) will be announcing the framework for canada’s first ever all-party parliamentary hearing to question a potential supreme court judge.

who it will be … ??? we don’t know yet, but apparently it will be from a short list that the liberals put together.

to be honest I have a few problems with the questioning of judges via a partisan panel of elected members.

the first of these concerns is obviously that as soon as that potential scc judge sits down a partisan circus begins. cheap political points are scored for political gain, at the expense of hard working and dedicated canadians, who uphold the basic principals of our democratic system.

so what can be done about this… ??? i say that when the time comes the liberals, ndp and bq refuse to sit on this committee. secondly any potential nominee should refuse to sit in front of such a body and answer no questions!

my second problem with this whacked idea is that instead of attracting judges who are well qualified and have dedicated their lives to our country, will instead shy away from sharing their talent of interpreting and upholding the law. why might they feel this??? because of the fear of being lynched by political partisans. so what kind of talent will a process like this attract? my guess is as good as any… i would say either political partisans who have an agenda or just less talented judges.

for those of us who follow politics (maybe a little to closely) we understand that we live in a democracy which is based on many indirect democratic principals. one of these being that when we cast our ballots that we subscribed to the current system in which the prime minister appoints judges … not members of parliament and/or possibly senators (yes im talking about you mr. fortier)! and i think it is quite safe to say that no prime minister has ever selected a crazy, crapy, loony, zany zealot supreme court judge. so why the change mr. harper???

if this had been an election promise/plank/pledge/idea or whatever then it would be hard to argue against what the people want… however, the citizens of this country did not ask for more political shenanigans!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

in the spirit of this hallmark holiday

To Helen

Helen, thy beauty is to me
Like those Nicean barks of yore,
That gently, o'er a perfumed sea,
The weary, wayworn wanderer bore
To his own native shore.

On desperate seas long wont to roam,
Thy hyacinth hair, thy classic face,
Thy Naiad airs have brought me home
To the glory that was Greece
And the grandeur that was Rome.

Lo! in yon brilliant window-niche
How statue-like I see thee stand,
The agate lamp within thy hand!
Ah, Psyche, from the regions which
Are Holy Land!

- Edgar Allan Poe

oh ezra...

i can't believe this canada am clip of ezra levant, publisher of the western standard... take a look at it here and judge for yourself... there are some valid points of debate on the 'cartoon issue' but the way in which levant communicates his point of view... even i found to be offensive.

Friday, February 10, 2006

brison blasts harper

Accountability means being in the House

Scott Brison
National Post

Friday, February 10, 2006

There has been justifiable disbelief and outrage at the news that an unelected Conservative organizer, Michael Fortier, has been parachuted into Cabinet as Minister of Public Works and Government Services via a patronage appointment to the Senate.

Canadians across the country have questioned Prime Minister Stephen Harper for abandoning his top campaign pledge of accountability on Day 1 in office. They have a right to be puzzled about how a man who had lobbied for an elected Senate since his days in the Reform party could jettison his principles to reward the co-chair of his leadership campaign in 2004 and his election campaign in 2006.

Let me quote from Mr. Harper's campaign platform launch of Jan. 13, 2006: "Our system itself must have integrity. A system with democratic integrity is one in which those who sit in the Parliament of Canada, including senators, are elected."

When Mr. Harper moved a motion to bring down the government on Nov. 24, 2005, he called the Liberals "corrupt" and "arrogant" for compensating the "good and loyal services" of friends with Senate seats. Of course, that was all before he became prime minister.

I am not questioning the capabilities of Mr. Fortier, nor his desire to serve his country. However, I am deeply concerned that a senator has been given the portfolio of Public Works -- a ministry that disburses vast amounts of public money -- when he will not be able to account for that spending in the House of Commons.

Public Works is a pivotal department that pays out approximately $14-billion annually on roughly 60,000 contracts for goods and services. As the contracting arm for the entire government, it is often the focus of scrutiny about transparency and accountability, as it was during the recent Gomery commission.

It's simply unacceptable to have a complex department responsible for spending hard-earned taxpayers' money being run by a minister who is unaccountable to the House of Commons -- the guardian of the public purse. Ministers given spending power and administrative authority by the executive branch must be answerable to Members of Parliament.

Public Works has been the focus of a great deal of parliamentary scrutiny in recent years. During my tenure as Minister, I answered more than 1,000 questions -- far more than anyone else in cabinet. I could not have done that from the Senate Chamber.

Mr. Harper handed out the guidelines for ministers, a document entitled Accountable Government, to the new Cabinet this past week. It states that "the Prime Minister expects ministers to place a very high priority on their House duties," and names daily attendance at Question Period as the number one expectation. Yet as a senator, Mr. Fortier will not even be able to enter the floor of the House.

Certainly, there are precedents for a prime minister turning to the Senate after the governing party was shut out of a region. But in this case, Mr. Harper had duly elected MPs from Quebec. Moreover, Mr. Fortier's appointment also raises questions about why Mr. Harper has ignored the lack of elected representatives for the city of Toronto or for the province of Prince Edward Island.

Recent precedents for appointing ministers from outside Parliament illustrates the constitutional convention that they must be able to answer for their departments in the House as soon after their appointments as possible. In 1996, then-prime minister Jean Chretien named Stephane Dion and Pierre Pettigrew to bolster his Cabinet representation from Quebec. Both immediately ran in by-elections, and were seated in the House within weeks of their appointments to the Cabinet. Yet Mr. Fortier insists he didn't want to run in the last election, and has no intention of running for a seat until the next general election -- which could be years away. From my perspective, if you want to be a Cabinet minister, you must run for office.

Stephen Harper has talked about "improving Canadian faith in public institutions," but he is now showing contempt for the House of Commons by naming an unelected and unaccountable friend to his cabinet. Canadians have the right to feel betrayed. Mr. Harper has rapidly abandoned the high ground on accountability and become a diminished politician who preaches one thing and practices another.

Scott Brison is the MP for Kings-Hants, N.S., and the former minister of public works.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

fun times... fun times...

from yesterday's swearing-in ceremony... looks like harper's kids are having a good time... and is that lady in the purple sleeping?

Monday, February 06, 2006

emerson joins cons... developing

click here

Thursday, February 02, 2006

leadershipalooza 2006... whishful thinking... draft conway

everyone seems to be posting blogs about possible candidates who aren't even thinking about tossing their names into leadershipalooza 2006.

well here is my wild card ... way out there pick for LPC leader. i think that SEAN CONWAY should be given some consideration. i have met the man on a few occasions and he has impressed me everytime. conway is personable, qualified and a charismatic speaker.

for those of you who are like who the #@$% is sean conway... visit here for a profile.