Pursuant to my own local babble, though purely by coincidence, Gaz happened to return to an idea he brought up some months back: the Magical Disappearing Conservative or Stealth-Cons.
I'm sure you can see why these two things are not coincidence:
To the Editor:
Al Siebring claims in his September 5th column that the "fundamental difference between American and Canadian politics" is courage. Now, while he may be making doe-eyes at his dream ticket down south, he's been missing what's been happening with the current government of the nation he lives in. Otherwise, he may have noticed that NO-ONE in the Conservative party speaks about any subject without it first having been vetted by 24 Sussex Drive. The government officials here are not allowed to say anything that may go off-message from the dictates of their leader, meaning no press conferences, no speaking in the halls, and certainly no interviews without permission. There is an excellent reason for this: the current Conservative Party of Canada is composed of two regional parties forced together in a marriage of convenience, not desire; and if Stephen Harper didn't keep his shotgun handy, the families would be at each other's throats before the cake was cut.
The ideology of the new party is awkward at best: one half (which plays better in the East) runs more secular, with fiscal responsibility at the top of their list, and personal freedoms being left to the individual; the other (mostly from the Reform Party in the West) runs more religious, with a greater involvement in social behaviour, and fiscal responsibility being in the mix, too. One of the issues that divided the right was exactly the one Mr. Seibring, and apparently Mr. Epp, wants re-opened: abortion. And yes, Mr. Epp's intent with his proposed bill was to do exactly that. Thinking otherwise is astoundingly naive, as a simple reading of the bill can attest:
Section 238.1 (5) _ It is not a defence to a charge under this section that the child is not a human being. _And
_(6) An offence referred to in this section committed against a child is not included in any offence committed against the mother of the child.
If you still think this won't be used against those who support abortion, may I suggest reading Mr. Epp's own web site, and see why he opposed bill C-543:
_“Why have increased penalties for attacks on pregnant women if the baby doesn’t matter?” Mr. Epp asked. “Either the unborn child matters so that attacks on pregnant women are more heinous, in which case Bill C-484 is a direct recognition of that reality; or the child doesn’t matter, in which case we don’t need any new law – the current provisions in the Criminal Code cover the violence to the woman."
That Siebring quotes /this very statement/ and still doesn't understand what it says is showing that he has low english comprehension skills or is being willfuly ignorant.
Compressed for print, but valid enough to repeat: the Conservatives are keeping their people very, very quiet unless they are absolutely certain the person will say nothing that hasn't been screened and vetted for a simple reason.
They are afraid of what they might otherwise say.