The Parallel Parliament

Glen Pearson

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My Absolute Best Assumption

Posted on June 26, 2008

The days following the announcement of Stephane Dion’s Green Shift proposal have been highly illustrative of much of what is wrong in the present political system.  I don’t need to go into the Prime Minister’s demeaning “It will screw everybody” –  the level of rhetoric speaks for itself. I’m more intrigued by the pundrity coming out of national media.  That there would be numerous opinions was to be predicted.  I am more surprised at the sheer lack of understanding of the Green Shift plan.  I spoke to one national columnist today who scolded me for supporting a plan that would ultimately hurt (his tone could have more fit the PM’s “screwed” language) the less-fortunate in society.  He said this to me because he perceived…

Leading By Quiet Responsibility

Posted on June 19, 2008

It’s gotten pretty dumb in the House lately.  Just when we thought things couldn’t get much worse, government members in the House have taken to making the kind of outlandish comments that cast a pall on all of Parliament. Stephane Dion’s carbon shift plan gets released tomorrow but that hasn’t stopped Conservative members from going “over the top” in their attacks, not only in the media (through purchased ads) but in the parliamentary chamber itself.  I have attempted to stay as non-partisan as possible in these pages, yet what I have witnessed in the last couple of weeks has been empty politics on a grand scale. One called the carbon plan a “yuppy fad,” while another said we would all be resorting to candles…

Killing the Child in the Indian

Posted on June 12, 2008

Today was unique in all of Parliament in that the Government of Canada, after more than a century, finally offered an apology to this country’s Metis, Inuit and First Nations peoples for the residential schools injustices.  We all took our seats in the House, while the gallery was full of aboriginal witnesses and victims – solemnity was the order of the day. The leaders of all four parties spoke, beginning with the Prime Minister, and all of them repeated the same quote that stayed with me when it was all over – “killing the Indian in the child.”  It was obviously a quote from somewhere but there was clear truth in it and we all felt it in that place.  Three general questions ran…

When Politics Comes Second

Posted on June 10, 2008

With two weeks to go in this present parliamentary session, the news cycle is fully taken up with stories on a possible immediate election, various scandals and views on Stephane Dion’s carbon shift.  My Blackberry received messages and calls all weekend, as if somethings were about to take place. But today I put all that aside.  This afternoon my wife Jane received the Medal of Distinction from Huron College, recognizing her two decades of work in Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Rwanda and of course the London Food Bank.  I sat down with our three children from Sudan this morning and explained to them just how special their Mom and her accomplishments really were.  I talked about her efforts feeding tens of thousands of people both…