Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Please flip-flop on me

I love a good flip-flop. They're totally under-rated. Herein, I declare "flip-flop" an honourific term!

I was thinking about the so-called Layton flip-flop on the Clarity Act (I know, I'm a couple of days behind on the whole campaign thing). Layton wanted to repeal the Clarity Act in 2004; now...not so much. You know what? That's a good, honest changing o' the mind. Most of his own party was against repealing the act in 2004, so it's not really a total aboot-face for the party. What's more, Layton acknowledges that the Act has broad support (even M. Bouchard! gasp!) and wasn't as really as divisive as he once thought. Good 'nuff. I'm 100% ok with that.

But you know what one of my all-time favourite flip-flops is? Missile Defence. Sure, sure, there were charges that Martin was merely "bowing" to NDP/Bloc pressure to resist BMD; there were Margaret Wente's bleatings about Martin's spinelessness (he "read the opinion polls and caved in"). Good! I was ecstatic that he "caved in" and f'g listened to the people of Canada on this issue. Even Linda McQuaig --no Martin booster she--gave Paul props for that one.

You know what flip-flop I am begging for? Security certificates. Those abominable things enacted post-9/11 in Bill C-36 ("The Anti-Terrorism Act") that allow detention without charge and secret trials. I've written about these disgraceful 'tools' before (twice) so I won't get myself worked up again tonight. It suffices to say: Get rid of those. No windy explanations necessary (especially if that wind has to come out of Anne McLellan...ughh....).

So I've made myself clear: I respect a good flip-flop when it "lands" in my general direction. Here's what I don't respect: the incomplete flip-flop. The unfinished turnabout. The artless dodge (or "No, I never!", as it's known in school yards). Think Stephen Harper and the invasion of Iraq. Everyone remembers Harper & Day's ridiculous op-ed in the Wall St. Journal: "Canada's largest opposition party, the Canadian Alliance, will not be neutral. In our hearts and minds we will be with our allies." And our fellow Progressive Blogger, "East-end Underground" has lovingly archived all the House of Commons stuff that Harper said in 2003. This is my "fave" from March 20, 2003:
We cannot walk away from the threat that Iraq's continued possession of weapons of mass destruction constitutes to its region and to the wider world. In the final analysis, disarming Iraq is necessary for the long term security of the world, to the collective interests of our historic allies and, therefore, manifestly it is in the national interest of this country.
[...] We in the Canadian Alliance support the American position today on this issue because we share its concerns and its worries about the future of the world if Iraq is left unattended.
And now? Well, as Harper responds to the Washington Times' drooly piece about him ("Gift from Canada?"), he doesn't even come close to completely rescinding his earlier support for the invasion:
On Iraq, while I support the removal of Saddam Hussein and applaud the efforts to establish democracy and freedom in Iraq, I would not commit Canadian troops to that country. I must admit great disappointment at the failure to substantiate pre-war intelligence information regarding Iraq's possession of weapons of mass destruction.
Umm...Stephen? Promise you won't get mad at me? Uh...you still got a little bit of TP stuck to yer shoe.

If your think the TP joke was tasteless, just thank your lucky stars I didn't go with my first instincts! Clue: it had the word "dingleberry" in it.


Blogger RP. said...

Huh, waddya know... Common sense on changing one's mind. If only...

12/13/2005 11:44 AM  

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