The NDP have been going around town trying to keep up appearances and convince us that they’re behaving as an opposition party. They’ve even been accusatory towards the Liberals abstaining, allowing the Conservatives to continue their right wing agenda. While they complain, lately they seem very content with the arrangement. The NDP will not rock the boat. They like things they way they are now because they feel there’s opportunity there to show the public that they can be the official opposition or actually even govern one day. They are seriously mistaken though that this will bring them benefits of any kind. The reality is that the Conservatives are using them and are laughing all the way. Jack and his team need to wake up, smell the coffee and start acting like the opposition they want and claim to be (hint: the Liberals aren’t the government anymore).
The NDP have no right to criticize the Liberals anymore. Their silence on the issue of the death penalty is worse than the Liberals waiting to bring down the government on an issue brought to the floor that they disagree with rather than vote against a vaguely defined agenda or tax cuts they 95% agree with. The NDP’s “nays” mean nothing when they don’t have any real importance to change something, it just gives them blank excuses to make themselves seem principled.
Take a look at ndp.ca. What do you see? Any mention on the main page of the Tories abandoning Canadian’s human rights on the issue of the death penalty? No of course not, instead there’s bashing of the Liberals (who have been very vocal on this issue unlike Jack and his friends) and the NDP’s unfeasible idea to abolish the Senate (which requires a constitutional amendment which won’t happen).
You would have thought the issue of the death penalty would be an issue that the NDP would be up in arms about. The death penalty is a serious social issue, which discriminates against the poor who often don’t get proper legal access and end being the ones on death row. Not only is the new Canadian position abominable from a human rights perspective and turns back 30 years of Canadian foreign policy (and puts us COMPLETELY ALONE IN THE WORLD in our stance) as it stands now it is inconsistent in its treatment of Canadians over Americans, as Americans get protected by this government from the death penalty while Canadians don’t.
The Tories are turning their back on the UN, the Charter of Rights & Freedoms and Canada’s international reputation. Where’s the NDP criticism? NO WHERE.
Jack Layton has decided instead that the issue of senate reform is a much more important issue to the NDP than the UN Charter and the poor and potentially-wrongly accused Canadians who wind up facing the death chamber. And the Tories are all too supportive of their new found relationship. They can continue to bond over bashing the real opposition – the Liberal party, who I believe does the right things at the right time for the right reasons.
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