Will Professor Ignatieff make us go to summer school?

At the moment, the Prime Minister and Michael Ignatieff are meeting to discuss infrastructure funding, possible changes to EI eligibility and, as we’re quite sure, engaging in rational discourse.

Last week, the government released its second report on the status of the Economic Action Plan and Ignatieff told reporters that it was too serious to grade the government, yet he stated that it had “failed” yet Canadians “don’t want an election right now”. What is the state of our system? A student fails the course but gets a pass because the parents have already planned the summer vacation? And to torture the metaphor a little more, I ask, is Michael Ignatieff really advocating that while failing Conservatives, he allow Canadians qualify for a fully paid sabbatical after six weeks of work? The 45 day work year, set to be defended by Liberals on an election trail near you, surely will not cause a stampede of voters to the ballot box. This really cannot be Ignatieff’s plan.

So what is really going on here? Flashback one year to the hapless Stephane Dion going into the summer, the Prime Minister’s neutered foe who rubber-stamped every piece of legislation by heading up the abstaining opposition. There is chatter around town that Michael Ignatieff is following Dion in his indecisiveness, however, this may instead represent an element of political narcissism for professor Ignatieff. The shovels are in the ground, the money is leaving the federal treasury to build infrastructure projects all over this country and Michael Ignatieff tells everyone to wait; Iggy has an important decision to make. To threaten to plunge the country into its fourth election in five years (with a $1.2 Billion tab) just so the media doesn’t frame him as the second coming of Stephane shows that he wants to know that his opinion – whatever he finds it to be – is relevant. As for his pensive pondering, he spent enough time in university seminars musing about the prolix and banal, yet as he transitions from the theoretical to applied, Dr. Ignatieff is showing that he is finding it difficult to both suck and blow.

In his press conference yesterday, Ignatieff used soft words such as “replace confrontation with cooperation”, “we cannot allow ourselves to act irresponsibly”, “if the government needs to sit a little longer, so be it” , “the Liberal party accepts the need for deficit spending in tough times”, “we want to make parliament work for all Canadians”, “I just want to give a sign to the Prime Minister that I’m a reasonable person. If he has employment proposals that he wants to bring forward, he needs a little more time, let’s not let the arbitrary deadline of Friday the be the all and end all. Let’s keep this serene and calm and business-like” Do these sound like bellicose words? So, why the drama Dr. Ignatieff?

He supported the Conservative budget earlier this year, he voted for the Conservative changes to EI. The Conservative government is spending billions of dollars in an effort to stimulate the economy. Why is this about him?

Michael Ignatieff knows that Canadians want him to allow Parliament to work, but he pauses to let us all know that it will only do so after he’s scowled at our exams.

Absent Liberals – The video player

UPDATE: The code is now working. Copy and paste the code below.

Be sure to put this on your blog. Instructions are below.

I was browsing YouTube earlier this evening and came across some recent uploads by somebody messaging against Stephane Dion for instructing his party to sit on their hands during the last session of Parliament. Dion’s Liberals abstained 43 times and could have brought down Stephen Harper’s government with any of these skipped votes. The videos that I found were uploaded by a user called “AbsentLiberals” and I’m fairly certain that it’s an NDP war-room effort. I believe that the NDP campaign created these videos to emphasize the point that their party was the only national opposition party to stand against the government. The NDP is making the point during this campaign that the Liberals gave Harper a de facto majority because they allowed the passage of his agenda by abstaining from votes. Of course, if Dion had voted against the government, we would have been in an election long ago as the Conservative Prime Minister made most bills issues of confidence. I also think that these videos are a product of the NDP war-room because they are also provided in French. Most unofficial activists would make the videos in either French or English but not both (there are 43×2 videos). UPDATE: As I suspected, these videos are from the NDP war-room.

Despite this likely being an NDP production, the message is plain for Conservatives and their supporters too; these videos show that Stephane Dion does not show leadership.

Years ago, I wrote a video distribution technique for Blogging Tories television and I think that the same can be applied for these videos. I modified my BT-TV program to deploy these “Absent Liberals” videos easily on your websites whether you support the Conservatives, the NDP or perhaps you are a Liberal that doesn’t support Dion. Just copy and paste the code into your own blog’s sidebar to embed the “Absent Liberals” video player. Imagine the player embedded on hundreds of blogs both left and right.

Sidebar player

Large player