Okay so this election campaign is only a few days old, and there is already a big stink about the way it is going, at least as far as the Communist Broadcasting Corporation (the shee bee shee) is concerned anyway. As with every campaign in the television age, we will get the chance to hear the leaders of the parties debate each other. There will as usual be two debates, one in french, the other in english, on consecutive nights though the english version will also coincide with the US vice-presidential debate. Given that more people seem interested in what’s going on south of the border, I wouldn’t bet our debate will be a ratings smash.
There are some key differences between the Canadian and American versions of the debates, except of course that in both countries the debates will be carried and moderated by a biased liberal media. The one I want to focus on is the fact that in the US, it will be a one-on-one confrontation, while in Canada it will be the usual higgeldy-piggeldy between the four parties represented in parliament, one of whom, the Bloc Quebecois, being a strictly regional (and quickly becoming irrelevant) party. Yesterday the “media” (CBC) ran with the story about the Green party being excluded from the televised fracas. “A sad day for democracy” is how their chief political correspondent put it.
The supporters of the Greens cried foul, saying that their views were being stifled by Stephen Harper since he refused to debate the Greens, saying that he would not participate in a debate that the Green party was involved in. I have to say that I agree whole-heartedly with the PM on this. Aside from the fact that the Liberals and Greens have decided not to run against each other in some ridings thus making the Greens the defacto Liberal candidate, the podium is already crowded. Along with this, the debate should be limited to those parties that are represented in the House of Commons. Granted the Greens had 1 person in the house, it was only because an independant MP decided to sit as a Green, and at that, he never actually did this as the house adjourned for the election before it could happen. Aside from this, if we were to have the leaders of every party running a candidate in the election, what of the Communists, the Marijuana Party, the Libertarians, or the the Rhino’s?
To those that would say that I am in favour of stifling democracy, let me just clarify something; I am perfectly for ANY parties right to be in the debate, even the communists, because that freedom is something that makes us Canadian. All I'm saying is, in order to be in the leaders debate, the parties represented should at the very least have official party status in the House, meaning a minimum of 12 sitting MP's. If the Greens or any of the other parties fielding candidates can do that, great, they get a seat at the table with the adults. Until that time however, no way.
Given the fact that we haven’t seen any kind of drama in a Canadian debate since Brian Mulroney spanked John Turner back in the 80’s, along with the fact that the debates won’t serve to change any minds anyway, and that there will be little interest in this debate here, all I have to say is....what’s the bloody point?