Stephen Harper and his vision man
Gov.-Gen David Johnston and friend
The throne speech is supposed to be a noble vision for the future of a country.
What we got from Stephen Harper this week it was an embarrassing collection of assorted political platitudes, and warmed-over campaign clichés.
There were even about a dozen NDP promises stolen from the past year in the Commons, which the Conservatives had voted down. In all it was about 4000 words in length, the longest Speech from the Throne in Canadian history. Governor-General David Johnston took forever to read it.
The contents were predictable. No question of tossing out the infamous Senate rascals, and no suggestion of getting rid of old Harper cronies, patronage friends and party bagmen who infest the place.
Harper could have at least put a ceiling on how much senators can pluck from taxpayers pockets every year.
And now for the platitudes:
Permission will soon be given to buy beer in a province and legally take it across borders to another province to drink . As if Canadians are not already doing that.
In Ottawa, we already get our beer from the Costco store in Gatineau. Much cheaper. Quite easy. No trouble with cops.
A new law will give Canadians the right to choose their own package of cable TV channels. The CRTC is already working on such an agreement. Somebody should tell Harper it’s already in the works.
Canadians will have the right to receive bills by mail rather than e-mail, without having to pay additional fees. Great! But how is this part of a vision for Canada?
What about a special law to punish people who kill police dogs? I like dogs as much as the next man, but a dog protection law in a Speech from the throne. A press release would have been enough.
Here’s the best one yet. Harper loves to celebrate old wars. No harm in that. Everyone honors the bravery of our veterans on Remembrance Day, November 11.
But Harper wants to add a new celebration next year to mark the beginning of the 1914-1918 war. Since when do we celebrate the beginning of a war?
"Hey Congratulations! We have a new war now. "
It's almost an insult to the families of the dead.
It becomes painfully obvious after a while. The purpose of such a silly speech from the Throne was to distract attention from the scandal and corruption issues raging in the Senate. Give them bread and circuses and they’ll forget about the corruption issues.
The speech was barely finished yesterday that Harper left for Belgium to sign a free trade agreement with 28 member countries of the European Union.
The Europeans were ready to sign the agreement last spring, but Harper said no. He would prefer to wait until the fall. Now we know why.
He won’t have to stick around this week and next for the awkward questions from the Opposition over the Senate scandals.
NDP leader Thomas Mulcair was furious.
"He's scared. He can run, but he can’t hide, "said Mulcair. »