Wednesday, June 07, 2006

This, That, and the Other

(1) I found this story (via Coyne) hilarious. By majority vote in the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, the Members of the House have called upon the Government to, among other things, recognize “…that the Premier's procrastination and failure to show leadership when it was most needed, allowed this situation to escalate into a public safety crisis”. The full text of the motion is here. The best part of the story is the Liberal neptness and subsequent explanation of their failure to get the vote recorded:

The vote was done by voice, with MPPs calling out "yay" or "nay." The "yays" were louder and not enough Liberals stood up quickly enough to force a recorded vote, which would have allowed more of their MPPs to rush to the Legislature to defeat the motion...

Liberal party whip Dave Levac, who is in charge of mustering MPPs for critical votes, said he was trying to get more Liberals to stand up to force a recorded vote but not enough heeded his hand signals.
How many would have been "enough"? Here's the relevant section of the Legislature Rules:

42(g) Debate on a motion shall be limited to one Sessional day. At 5:50 p.m. on that day, the Speaker shall interrupt the proceedings and shall put the question without debate. If a recorded vote is requested, the division bells shall be limited to 10 minutes.
The rules don't even specify - but under budget and time allocation motions, they do specify a recorded vote must be requested by 5 members... And they should have known in advance that this would occur at precisely 5:50PM. Oh, imagine the scene - the whip gesturing in vain to muster a meager 5 Liberal Members to stand up in time against a motion calling out the procrastination and failures of leadership of their own Premier.

Yet we continue to operate under the illusion that debate in Parliament somehow matters. I can only imagine how a gaffe like this would be ruthlessly mocked in Britain. Perhaps the whip would be so ashamed he would throw himself into the Thames. (I so love that expression!)

(2) As most know, the Nova Scotia election culminates in a vote next Tuesday. I will try and put up some thoughts on each of the three (four?) main parties over the next few days, with predictions, an indication on how I'll be casting my ballot, and a look at some of the innanities of the Elections Act. Incidentally, I happen to live in the same building where Premier MacDonald keeps a Halifax apartment. We bumped into him in the hallway last evening on my way out to "The Break Up". So hilariously (and wonderfully) communal, this province.

(3) Iamnotafraid.ca? Fine intentions, I suppose, but really - doesn't such a plan just unnecessarily flatters these would-be lunatic terrorists as to their own importance and sense of impact? Far from being "afraid" by the thought of such eejits roaming the streets, I find myself simply not bothered. Radwanski's musings on ignoring them altogether (June 5th) seems the more appropriate response.

Within reason, of course. And this is certainly not to minimize our reliance on the authorities' continuing good efforts on a job (so far) well done. Our government will always need to evaluate how it can best protect the citizens in the face of the depraved. But simply put, living in a society entails a certain assumption of risk. I much prefer Sinister Thoughts' contribution to this "not afraid" business, so far as slogans go. Take off indeed, hosers.

And cheers to your continued failures and stupidity.


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