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Author Topic: Layton Reverses Course on Clarity Act
A Blair
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posted 08 December 2005 04:02 PM      Profile for A Blair     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This is a continuation of the NDP on the Move in Québec thread.

Yesterday in Montréal NDP leader Jack Layton contradicted his 2004 election position that he would repeal the Clarity Act, which outlines under which conditions the federal government can negotiate the secession of a province or region. He said that "We would not repeal the Clarity Act," because "It follows directly from the principles laid out by the Supreme Court and has been broadly accepted across the spectrum as a basis for proceeding." (see Globe & Mail story)

He further stated that "if you believe that Canada is a country you don't want to be a part of anymore, then you will vote for the Bloc." (see Edmonton Sun story)

It looks like instead of fundamentally changing the NDPs historical policies in order to court seperatist voters, he is cutting seperatists loose. This strategy assumes that the NDP is a federalist party that will never accept the idea that Québec separation is the best route to solve the national question anyways, so there's no use trying to change the party to become more accommodating to the seperatist movement. How will this affect NDP support in Québec, and federal politics as a whole? In the short term, this will cost the NDP the support of some soft nationalists in Québec. But in the long term is having a viable left alternative in Québec that isn't seperatist healthy for Québec and Canadian politics? Right now to a significant extent, probably to the detriment of the federalist cause, in Quebec the Liberals = Canada.

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: A Blair ]


From: Canada | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 08 December 2005 04:15 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The problem is that National Unity is a third rail for the NDP. Talking about repealing the Clarity Act alienates many more Western voters than it obtains in material support in Quebec. NOT having a position on it leads to suspicion on both fronts.

The problem is caused by the fact that the sovereignty is widely and resentfully perceived as a blackmail tactic in the West, which views (correctly or incorrectly) Quebec as a sort of vampire that uses the sovereignty threat to gain money and support that enterprises don't receive in the West.

The Clarity Act fulfills the role of seeming to put an end to the blackmail---rather than putting an end to sovereignty itself. In the West there is resentment that THEY remain loyal and thus get nothing, but by being DISLOYAL Quebec gets something. This is also the fuel for Alberta separatism.

For the NDP to escape this double bind, one of two things has to happen:

1. Western voters in particular develop a more sophisticatec concept of the arguments and history behind Quebec nationalism, and hence don't see the necessity of "forcing" Quebec's "hand".

2. Constitutional change occurs which satisfies the Quebec government.

Neither of these things are really within the hands of the NDP, alas.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Vansterdam Kid
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posted 08 December 2005 04:56 PM      Profile for Vansterdam Kid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Simon said:

quote:
Because that question doesn't describe well the exact process that sovereignists want to take, it's one of those "blank cheque" questions.

Okay, but I still think the question the separatists ask could be clearer. They still ask the question with the words 'sovereignty association', which is more popular than independence and has less of an impact. And since we know that sovreignty association can mean just about anything, whereas indpendence is clear, its an intellectual cop-out. If they were truely democratic, they'd wouldn't be so obscure.

Can't they say:

"Do you support the Quebec government negotiating the terms of its withdrawal from the Canadian federation, for the purpose of creating a state completely independent from the Canadian federation, with the federal Canadian government?"

Yes or No?

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: Vansterdam Kid ]


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A Blair
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posted 08 December 2005 05:05 PM      Profile for A Blair     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This new strategy offers Layton the opportunity to reinvigorate the national debate by presenting a new model for Canada. If Layton - who may now be taking an explicitly federalist tact on the Québec national question - wants to make any long-term inroads in Québec he has to answer a question that is succintly put by Environics chief Michael Adams: "what does Canada offer young people who aspire not to be politicians in Ottawa or bankers in Toronto or foot soldiers in the American empire, but who merely want to be cool in Quebec?"

So far no federal politician this campaign has presented any compelling vision for why Québécois should not vote to seperate, instead all have left the task of defining this future up to the Bloc. Liberal corruption combined with little progress in tying to solve the Québec national question equals a Oui victory in the 2009 referendum.


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rasmus
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posted 08 December 2005 05:10 PM      Profile for rasmus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This, coming on the heels of the "no new taxes" pledge, is pretty much all I can take. Scratch my plans to volunteer for the party this time around.

The people who run NDP campaigns seem to think politics is a technical affair. You take a poll to find out why people aren't voting for you, and then you make adjustments to overcome these concerns. If we keep on playing the same game, only play it better, we'll break through this time. Except that it doesn't work that way, not for the NDP. On top of that, they keep hiring people primarily for loyalty reasons (including the ad agencies), vastly undervalue talent and critical thinking, tend to underestimate the specificity of skills, operate out of intense fear of the media, and so on... If doing the same thing over and over when it isn't working isn't an indicator of lack of imagination and strategic intelligence, i don't know what is.

Personally I really don't get the need for this statement. Would silence have really been so bad? Give up on Quebec already if you're going to do this. Why spend a red cent there? It's a complete waste of money.


From: Fortune favours the bold | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
leftcoastguy
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posted 08 December 2005 05:13 PM      Profile for leftcoastguy     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Let's not lose track of this recently posted by Wilf Day

quote:
Jack's statements on the Clarity Act this week must have been in response to press questions, because they aren't in his speeches on the NDP website. When I searched for "Clarity Act" it said:
quote:
--
Sorry, but search returned no results.
Try to produce less restrictive search query.
--
Yes, something less restrictive than the Clarity Act would be good.
The news reports on what he said are fragmentary.

However, if you look at what the Supreme Court said (which no one had a problem with -- the ADQ loved it because it stated a duty to negotiate) and the Clarity Act, you'll see they're very different. If Jack said that, to the extent that the Clarity Act follows the Supreme Court judgment, it is acceptable, then that's a finesse which may get the issue off the front page.

Actually the Clarity Act is irrelevant, being neither "clear" (it fails to state whether or not more than 50% is required) nor an "Act" (it makes no ground rules for anything, it's a statement of legislative policy that reserves the right to do various threatened things in the future.)



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simonvallee
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posted 08 December 2005 05:15 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Wrong. The Clarity Act is there to make sure that the federal government only negotiates on terms it is satisfied is fair and democratic. There are problems with the Clarity Act, yes (for example I think it needs to be more clear - explicitly stating the number that would constitute a clear majority) but at it allows for any question a seperatist government wants to pose to its people. Honest seperatists have nothing to fear: why would they would want to barely win on an ambiguous question anyways? That would be the surest way to make any new Quebec republic politically unstable and plagued by secessionist strife for generations.

You're wrapping bullshit in gold leaves. The Clarity Act says that the federal has the right to refuse to negotiate sovereignty after a winning referendum if it estimates the "question" or "majority" to be "unclear". As the federal also refuses to recognize any UDI, that means that the federal will try to deny a winning referendum's decision to be respected, therefore giving it the right to veto a referendum on sovereignty. It therefore gives the right to the federal government to decide for Québécois if they really understood the question and what they meant by saying YES, as if Québécois were stupid infants needing to be controled by their betters.

In fact, you claim to disagree with me but in fact you merely repeat what I say but spinned as to make the democratically intolerable appear tolerable... as I said, wrapping bullshit in gold leaves. The Clarity Act is an unacceptable legislation for anyone with a democratic bone in his body. The proof is that whenever a similar referendum was organized elsewhere in the world, Canada as a "defender of democracy" opposed any move to either make the winning threshold higher than 50%+1 or to allow the country opposing the referendum to decide if the question was valid or not. Former Bloquiste Daniel Turp was very good at pointing out that elsewhere, Canada tried to represent democratic principles, but in its own backyard, that was another thing.








quote:
Okay, but I still think the question the separatists ask could be clearer. They still ask the question with the words 'sovereignty association', which is more popular than independence and has less of an impact. And since we know that sovreignty association can mean just about anything, whereas indpendence is clear, its an intellectual cop-out. If they were truely democratic, they'd wouldn't be so obscure.

You're completely wrong, sovereignty-association is clear, much clearer in fact than independence because it illustrates a specific manner of independence: political sovereignty with economical association. It is also the term used most widely, so that people are familiar with it, that's why questions about independence is less popular, it wasn't used in speeches, so when people hear the different term, they wonder what it means, how it is different to sovereignty-association, and that confuses them. Remember that the question doesn't happen in a vaccuum, we almost literally bathe in it since we're kids, we know what sovereignty-association means, even if you don't. You'll also note that since the PQ and vocal sovereignists have started using the word independence interchangeably with sovereignty, the support for independence has risen with the support for sovereignty-association and closed the gap. In the past, the difference could be of 15-20 points between the two, last time I saw a poll on it, the difference was reduced to about 5 points. People are told they're the same, that independence is another word for sovereignty-association so they support a question about independence more and more.

Probably in reaction to it, federalists will start saying how asking if people want Québec to be independent is "not clear enough" then want the question to be if people want Québec to separate... then if they want Québec to secede... It's really funny how most federalists have abandonned the hope of actually solving the problems with Canada as to address recriminations felt by people in it, but more and more try rather to prevent by law or force sovereignists from achieving their goal through democratic means. Like a violent husband threatening his wife with violence to force her to stay with him.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 08 December 2005 05:23 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
It's really funny how most federalists have abandonned the hope of actually solving the problems with Canada as to address recriminations felt by people in it, but more and more try rather to prevent by law or force sovereignists from achieving their goal through democratic means. Like a violent husband threatening his wife with violence to force her to stay with him.
Assuming this is so, do you know the reasons why?

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Guêpe
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posted 08 December 2005 05:25 PM      Profile for Guêpe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Question: Why couldn't a referendum consist of two questions? E.g.:

1) Do you support independance for Quebec?

Yes or No

2) If yes, what process do you best support

a) Unilateral Succession after X date.

b) Negotiation of new economic partership with full political autonomy after Y date.

c)....etc.

---

As for the 50% + 1 threshhold isn't true everywhere. So let's no say that it is. E.g. PEI and BC on electoral reform (60/60 threshold), recently. Even municipal plebicites have minimum voter turn out thresholds for the changes to be binding.

You can't unscramble an egg...with the idea that something such as seperatism can be brough back an infinite number of times, maybe in the name of stability support should be stronger than 50+1 no?


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the grey
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posted 08 December 2005 05:32 PM      Profile for the grey     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:

The Clarity Act says that the federal has the right to refuse to negotiate sovereignty after a winning referendum if it estimates the "question" or "majority" to be "unclear".

Not quite. It says that the federal government (ie: cabinet / executive branch) cannot negotiate unless Parliament (ie: legislative branch) says the question and majority are clear. The effect is a constraint on executive power.

[Note that it doesn't prevent the premiers of the other provinces from negotiating with Quebec, . . .]

Also, Parliament is required to address the clarity of the question before it is put to a vote - not after the vote has happened. (I think the idea of having the federal parliament make such a decision in the midst of a referendum campaign may be the stupidist part of the act: say it's clear, and you support the separatists; say it isn't and it's an affront to Quebec -- what a lose-lose proposition.)

As for the clarity of "sovereignty-association", I take it that you mean if Canada rejects the "association" part, the sovereignists will recognize that the vote won't have been approval for separation? I find that hard to believe.


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Jughead
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posted 08 December 2005 05:33 PM      Profile for Jughead     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Rasmus - right on.

It's as though they discovered that shooting themselves in the foot was a bad idea, therefore they tried shooting themselves in the other foot.


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Vansterdam Kid
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posted 08 December 2005 05:34 PM      Profile for Vansterdam Kid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Simon, What if Canada doesn't want 'economic association', whatever that even means? Maybe something is just lost in translation. It's still really nebulous and can encompass many things. Your assuming that Canada would want to give Quebec any say in any economic decisions, that would effect two theoretically separate countries. Quebec would be foreign, they'd get no say over anything. Now in negotiations over say a free trade pact, yes, but there are far more examples of decisions where the political and economic sphere's overlap. And nothing democratic is exercised, traditionally, in free trade agreements.

Let's say Quebec wants to keep the Canadian dollar, that's fine. But do they expect a say in the setting of interest rates, because they have an 'economic association' with Canada? They'll be foreign, they won't get any say in anything. Essentially, the words 'sovereignty association' whereas sovereignty refers to political independence and association refers to economic integration seem a little strange at best. Designed to make the average Quebecois voter more happy about a potentially independent Quebec, while completely ignoring political realities that are connected to economic decisions. Totally forgetting that some things are out of their control, whether they like it or not.

Besides, I must ask you as a progressive person, since when have economic decisions been made in a democratic way? Why would anything change with an independent Quebec. Oh sure the politicians would be negotiating things, but the Liberals said "trust us, we'll get rid of NAFTA". So, people voted for them and they did no such thing. And considering that support for such measures are higher in Quebec then much of the rest of Canada, I can't see why such agreements wouldn't be replicated complete with their anti-democratic measures like chapter 11.

p.s. Sorry if it seems like I'm another person just jumping on you.

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: Vansterdam Kid ]


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kropotkin1951
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posted 08 December 2005 05:35 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
As a western federalist I oppose sovereignity association becaue it implies that there is Quebec and there is "The Rest of Canada". If you want to debate how many entities should be in our confederation and what powers they will have then I am up for that debate. I find it insulting to be lumped into the ROC and be told that we have to accept a one-on-one relationship because that is the view of the majority of Quebecois. By implication Quebec sovereignists are defining BC, the Maritims, the Territories etc. as one entity. That is why in the West people say if you want to secede then go but if you want to change the constitution don't you dare define us as the ROC.

That to me is the problem with the debate and why it is so hard to get past. We are not one entitity in the ROC and we will never agree to become a bi-polar state [unintended pun but left in anyways]. We are a confederation in need of a new constitution not merely two entities.

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: kropotkin1951 ]


From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 08 December 2005 05:43 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Assuming this is so, do you know the reasons why?

For federalists of the RoC, they fear that accomodating Québec's desire for more autonomy would disrupt Canada's cohesiveness as a country as more provinces would ask for the same so they prefer to try to block sovereignists rather than convince them with their actions that Canada isn't so bad. As to Québec's federalists, they have ears and eyes, they can see the unwillingness of the federal establishment to reform anything, so they have abandonned the hope that Canada can be reformed.












quote:
Not quite. It says that the federal government (ie: cabinet / executive branch) cannot negotiate unless Parliament (ie: legislative branch) says the question and majority are clear. The effect is a constraint on executive power.

[Note that it doesn't prevent the premiers of the other provinces from negotiating with Quebec, . . .]

Also, Parliament is required to address the clarity of the question before it is put to a vote - not after the vote has happened. (I think the idea of having the federal parliament make such a decision in the midst of a referendum campaign may be the stupidist part of the act: say it's clear, and you support the separatists; say it isn't and it's an affront to Quebec -- what a lose-lose proposition.)

As for the clarity of "sovereignty-association", I take it that you mean if Canada rejects the "association" part, the sovereignists will recognize that the vote won't have been approval for separation? I find that hard to believe.


The question are clear on this, whatever happened, Québec would become sovereign, but before, the government of Québec would have tried to negotiate a new economic association with the federal government. If it refuses, it'll go on ahead with sovereignty, as an economic association can be negotiated after the anger has died and more logical reasoning has taken over.








quote:
Besides, I must ask you as a progressive person, since when have economic decisions been made in a democratic way? Why would anything change with an independent Quebec. Oh sure the politicians would be negotiating things, but the Liberals said "trust us, we'll get rid of NAFTA". So, people voted for them and they did no such thing. And considering that support for such measures are higher in Quebec then much of the rest of Canada, I can't see why such agreements wouldn't be replectated complete with their anti-democratic measures like chapter 11.

What would change is that it would be the representatives of the people of Québec who would negotiate such deals and therefore immediately answerable to Québécois (who BTW have become some of the most ardent critics of globalization). Our government would therefore be more responsive because it wouldn't have to answer two different peoples' wills and it couldn't play one against the other as the Liberals often do. In the end, the Québécois would be better represented, and that is enough for me, even if things don't always go the way I want.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Vansterdam Kid
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posted 08 December 2005 05:48 PM      Profile for Vansterdam Kid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Well, Quebec and Alberta were the bases of Mulroney getting re-elected so he could negotiate free-trade in the first place.
From: bleh.... | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
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posted 08 December 2005 05:51 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:

What would change is that it would be the representatives of the people of Québec who would negotiate such deals and therefore immediately answerable to Québécois (who BTW have become some of the most ardent critics of globalization). Our government would therefore be more responsive because it wouldn't have to answer two different peoples' wills and it couldn't play one against the other as the Liberals often do. In the end, the Québécois would be better represented, and that is enough for me, even if things don't always go the way I want.



In the end if you want to secede that is your right. If you want to renegotiate confederation you must accept that it will not be a binary relationship becaue that is not the reality of Canada.

I wish the people of Quebec had shared our views on globalization in the 1980's. The Free Trade election saw a majority of Canadians vote for parties that opposed it and the people of Quebec and Alberta overwhelmingly supporting the Conservative Quislings and therefore giving them the seats to impose it on the majority.


From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 08 December 2005 05:55 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
For federalists of the RoC, they fear that accomodating Québec's desire for more autonomy would disrupt Canada's cohesiveness as a country as more provinces would ask for the same so they prefer to try to block sovereignists rather than convince them with their actions that Canada isn't so bad.
But given that you recognize at least one of the problems, what actions, given that constraint, do you think that federalists could take anyway?

From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
tallyho
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posted 08 December 2005 07:04 PM      Profile for tallyho        Edit/Delete Post
kropotkin: "That is why in the West people say if you want to secede then go but if you want to change the constitution don't you dare define us as the ROC."

Sovereigntists in Quebec make no demands on ROC to be anything. They don't want ROC to be bilingual or 'one block' etc. That's the view from outside of Quebec. Most Quebecers don't give a hoot if they go into an airport in Calgary and see signs in French anymore than if they were in Chicago. Most of what we view as 'Quebec' demands are actually appeasemnets that originated in ROC to stave off Quebec independence...and fail miserably.


From: The NDP sells out Alberta workers | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 08 December 2005 07:23 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
But given that you recognize at least one of the problems, what actions, given that constraint, do you think that federalists could take anyway?

Try anyway, risk it. Better to let the steam off than put the lid on and have it explode in your face.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
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posted 08 December 2005 07:46 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by tallyho:
kropotkin: "That is why in the West people say if you want to secede then go but if you want to change the constitution don't you dare define us as the ROC."

Sovereigntists in Quebec make no demands on ROC to be anything. They don't want ROC to be bilingual or 'one block' etc. That's the view from outside of Quebec. Most Quebecers don't give a hoot if they go into an airport in Calgary and see signs in French anymore than if they were in Chicago. Most of what we view as 'Quebec' demands are actually appeasemnets that originated in ROC to stave off Quebec independence...and fail miserably.


If you want to secede then you are right you are making no demands on the other provinces and territories. That is why most of us want to see you ask a question that says do you want to secede from Canada. The notion of sovereignity association implies a bi-lateral arrangement. It is not fair or honest to ask the Quebec people if they want a new relationship with Canada because that is for Canada to decide after you secede.

If you ask about sovereignity association then it would only be fair to acknowledge that if the other provinces say no way to a bilateral relationship then the people of Quebec would need to vote again to determine if they really want to secede and not just point a gun to the head of the rest of us saying agree to a bilateral agreement or we will secede.

I say either secede and then we'll talk or talk about a new constitution now but with the realization that most citizens in the other provinces don't want a bilateral agreement with Quebec or the US or any other nation.


From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
A Blair
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posted 08 December 2005 08:02 PM      Profile for A Blair     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
The Clarity Act says that the federal has the right to refuse to negotiate sovereignty after a winning referendum if it estimates the "question" or "majority" to be "unclear". As the federal also refuses to recognize any UDI, that means that the federal will try to deny a winning referendum's decision to be respected, therefore giving it the right to veto a referendum on sovereignty.

You completely misinterpret what the Clarity Act effectively does. First, if the federal government refuses to recognize a UDI then it is because the Supreme Court ruled in 1998 that there is no legitimate basis for a UDI. Second, a clear majority decision on a clear question will be respected. Third, you state that "the federal will try to deny a winning referendum's decision to be respected" but it will only be legally barred from negotiating in the event of an ambiguous question. It has nothing to do with any veto or any powers over Québec's right to decide. Please stop misrepresenting its significance or attempting to paint seperatists as victims somehow. No democratic right to self-expression has been taken away from Québécois with the Clarity Act.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
It therefore gives the right to the federal government to decide for Québécois if they really understood the question and what they meant by saying YES, as if Québécois were stupid infants needing to be controled by their betters.

Rubbish. Québécois will decide for Québécois. And the federal government will decide for the federal government and its electors. Do not deny them the same right of self-determination that you ask for the seperatist movement.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
In fact, you claim to disagree with me but in fact you merely repeat what I say but spinned as to make the democratically intolerable appear tolerable...

Our arguments look similar and at the same time infuriate you because you have just discovered the basic hypocracy in seperatist arguments - the fundamental contradiciton that, in order to seceed from a state and have their own viable state, they must deny others those basic democratic rights that they demand for themselves. For example, the government (or people) of Québec can decide on what terms it will negotiate, but the government (or people) of Canada cannot do the same. For example, the people of Québec have the right to self-determination but other groups within Québec do not have this same right since they do not fit a convenient seperatist definition of what constitutes a "nation". For example, that Canada's territorial integrity can be altered but Québec's cannot. For example, that Québec is a nation but Canada is not a real country.

Thus logical conclusions based on your own assumptions appear intolerable to you. Let's be more open & honest about this whole discussion and avoid the inflammatory terminology of victimization such as "stupid infants needing to be controled by their betters." If we can rationally discuss the situation, I am confident that a lasting national solution to this problem can be reached.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Remember that the question doesn't happen in a vaccuum, we almost literally bathe in it since we're kids, we know what sovereignty-association means, even if you don't.

Speak for yourself. I'm am Québécois and I don't really know what seperatists mean by this, or the implications. In fact there were a lot of people after the last referendum with very different ideas of what they just voted for, so don't make it look like it's a black & white issue with everyone clear on it.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
You'll also note that since the PQ and vocal sovereignists have started using the word independence interchangeably with sovereignty, the support for independence has risen with the support for sovereignty-association and closed the gap.

Good, then perhaps next referendum we'll have a clear question about complete independence. What's really on the line will be much more apparent to everybody.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Probably in reaction to it, federalists will start saying how asking if people want Québec to be independent is "not clear enough" then want the question to be if people want Québec to separate... then if they want Québec to secede... It's really funny how most federalists have abandonned the hope of actually solving the problems with Canada as to address recriminations felt by people in it, but more and more try rather to prevent by law or force sovereignists from achieving their goal through democratic means. Like a violent husband threatening his wife with violence to force her to stay with him.

Don't put down your opponets by disingenuouly suggesting they would do something ridiculous when there is no real indication of any such intentions. You use words like "violent" and "force" to describe the federalist side, but this too is an unfounded ad hominem attack. And I tell you this: there are many, many Québec federalists like myself that have not abandoned hope of solving the problems within Canada, and making it a better place. Millions of them love their country as much as you love the idea of an independent Québec.


From: Canada | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 08 December 2005 08:22 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Try anyway, risk it. Better to let the steam off than put the lid on and have it explode in your face.
But it was tried once, and it had precisely the effect described: numerous other entities started demanding powers in return for recognizing Quebec.

At some point the federal government has to be sovereign or it isn't a federal government.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
frandroid_atreides
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posted 08 December 2005 10:53 PM      Profile for frandroid_atreides   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Guêpe:
Question: Why couldn't a referendum consist of two questions? E.g.:

The PQ could do that, but they only offer the less radical option. Sounds democratic to me.

quote:
As for the 50% + 1 threshhold isn't true everywhere. So let's no say that it is. E.g. PEI and BC on electoral reform (60/60 threshold), recently. Even municipal plebicites have minimum voter turn out thresholds for the changes to be binding.

You can't unscramble an egg...with the idea that something such as seperatism can be brough back an infinite number of times, maybe in the name of stability support should be stronger than 50+1 no?


You put the higher threshold on a referendum when you want your government to appear democratic, but don't actually want to give your citizens a choice. Surely electoral reform in BC wasn't such a bad egg to unscramble? Why hasn't the democratic will of voters in that province been respected?

Also, why was the threshold at 50% for the Nisga'a treaty referendum, held in the same province? Are first nations less important than electoral reform?

An example to respond to the "unscrambling eggs" question: Newfoundland was allowed in Canada with a referendum at 52%. If 52% is enough to enter Canada, why should there be a higher threshold for getting out of it?

As for voter turnout, it's a valid question but a non-issue as participation in the 1995 referendum was 93,52%. As far as democratic exercises go anywhere in the world, that was an exceptional rate of participation and can be expected to be repeated should there be a referendum again.

quote:
Since the PQ does not respect the will of the people of Quebec who voted to stay in Canada twice then referendums should be by definition 'never-end-um' in Quebec. Alawys ongoing. Since the PQ persists in holding them until they get their desired vote, by following this logic they must continue holding them even after they win because maybe the people will change their minds again on the next referendum. By this logic the PQ must continue having the referendum and respect the will of the people who may decide in the future to vote 'no' again after having voted 'yes'. Maybe we should do referendums like hockey make it a best 5 out of 9 or the best 6 out of 11. Or maybe we can have a referendum every 2 years for 100 years and the winner takes all.

The people of Quebec voted twice already and they voted to stay in Canada both times. So sad that the PQ continues to disrespect the will and wishes of the people of Quebec and terrorize them at their fancy.


You forget one thing. In order to have those referendums, the PQ must first be elected. It's not like the referendums popped out of nowhere.


quote:
Yet, did we hear a SINGLE fucking federalist politician bring a motion for a "CLARITY ACT" to impose on British Columbia? From the NDP, liberals, conservatives?
quote:
Because it's not the same thing, I don't even know where to begin on pointing out how ridiculous this assertion is.

In both cases, people argue about the democratic legitimacy of the referendums. It's the same case here.

[ 08 December 2005: Message edited by: frandroid_atreides ]


From: Toronto, Arrakis | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 09 December 2005 12:00 AM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
You completely misinterpret what the Clarity Act effectively does.

No, I understand it very well, it is Chrétien's "plan B", in other words the "change the rules of the game so that sovereignists can't win" plan. It does intend to restrict the right to self-determination of Québec by giving arbitrary rights to the federal government to veto the decision of the people of Québec, of refusing their decision and denying them what they democratically decide. Tell me, if it doesn't restrict that right, then that means that in the case of a winning referendum, Québec will become sovereign and be recognized as such even by the federal government if the federal government refuses to negotiate by using the Clarity Act. That's what you're saying and it's not making sense, why would ultra-federalists want to uphold it so bad if it changes nothing to the situation?

quote:
Our arguments look similar and at the same time infuriate you because you have just discovered the basic hypocracy in seperatist arguments - the fundamental contradiciton that, in order to seceed from a state and have their own viable state, they must deny others those basic democratic rights that they demand for themselves. For example, the government (or people) of Québec can decide on what terms it will negotiate, but the government (or people) of Canada cannot do the same. For example, the people of Québec have the right to self-determination but other groups within Québec do not have this same right since they do not fit a convenient seperatist definition of what constitutes a "nation". For example, that Canada's territorial integrity can be altered but Québec's cannot. For example, that Québec is a nation but Canada is not a real country.

Nope, the sovereignist argument is not hypocrite, the federalist-partitionist argument is. Sovereignism isn't about inventing new borders like you claim, it's not taking an arbitrary group of people and inventing new frontiers based on the right to self-determination, it's about taking an already existing political entity with its own borders and some autonomy and making it completely autonomous. About making Québec sovereign and not inventing a country out of nothing like partitionists would want to do. Worse, it's incoherent for you to argue in favor of partition but would refuse the right of small arbitrary groups to separate from Canada by inventing new borders and political entities from nowhere like you would want done with Québec if a referendum for sovereignty passes.

Partition and sovereignty are similar only in the heads of people with absolutely no analytic capacity, ability for nuance or the partisan blindness that silences their common sense.

quote:
Don't put down your opponets by disingenuouly suggesting they would do something ridiculous when there is no real indication of any such intentions. You use words like "violent" and "force" to describe the federalist side, but this too is an unfounded ad hominem attack. And I tell you this: there are many, many Québec federalists like myself that have not abandoned hope of solving the problems within Canada, and making it a better place. Millions of them love their country as much as you love the idea of an independent Québec.

Well if you love Canada so much, you should try to convince people by actions rather than words why Québec can be accomodated and its interests best protected in Canada rather than supporting those undemocratic attempts by your side to block sovereignty by legal rather than political means. All I ask is that federalists respect sovereignists and vice versa, maybe most federalists want to, but your leaders do not, they show it with their intentions to forget all the rules of democracy they support unconditionally everywhere else in the world as a mean to make sure that one vote for sovereignism is worth less than one vote for federalism and to force sovereignists to redefine their project on the terms of ultra-federalists.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Wilf Day
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posted 09 December 2005 01:14 AM      Profile for Wilf Day     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Simon, don't give up on us, especially since you're still brave enough to be the NPD candidate in Verchères--Les Patriotes.

One point I haven't seen you mention. Levesque's concept was "sovereignty-association" which he even called "a new Canadian Union." Then some, such as Parizeau, were opposed to the hyphen, as giving a veto to the ROC, if Quebec doesn't dare be sovereign without an association. From that perspective, the enemy was not the Clarity Act, the enemy was the hyphen.

You say "whatever happened, Québec would become sovereign, but before, the government of Québec would have tried to negotiate a new economic association with the federal government. If it refuses, it'll go on ahead with sovereignty, as an economic association can be negotiated after the anger has died and more logical reasoning has taken over."

So the hyphen can be postponed? A very flexible hyphen, but I see you still use it. Has it lost its meaning?

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
federalists will start saying how asking if people want Québec to be independent is "not clear enough" then want the question to be if people want Québec to separate... then if they want Québec to secede... It's really funny how most federalists have abandonned the hope of actually solving the problems with Canada as to address recriminations felt by people in it

Most federalists have, maybe. Not all of us.

I actually think talking about the association is a way forward. If we could focus on the goals of a new partnership between Quebec and "nous autres" then we could see how many of them could get started now, and whether assymetrical federalism might have more promise than some think.

quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Québécois (who BTW have become some of the most ardent critics of globalization).

For years, the United States has been waging a trade war against Canada’s forest industry, Jack says:
quote:
You’re all familiar with this issue, and you know what Mr. Martin has done about it.

Here’s the Martin line to the United States: “Now…. you guys… you just stop that… or I’ll… talk again.”

Well, New Democrats don’t think talk is good enough when it comes to defending Canada. . . when they explicitly violate a trade agreement, then we think there have to be consequences – not just talk. Here’s what we’ll do about it.

If the United States doesn’t agree to respect its treaty obligations and to refund every penny collected improperly in this dispute, we favour a polite, clear, neighbourly warning that Canada is prepared to impose export duties on oil and gas exports to the United States. . .

In the long term, we’ll revisit Canada’s foreign investment review laws so that Canada can make sure sell-outs . . of our resources and key public utilities don’t happen again without a full, public review.


Are there some Quebec examples you can tell us more about?

[ 09 December 2005: Message edited by: Wilf Day ]


From: Port Hope, Ontario | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
leftcoastguy
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posted 09 December 2005 01:20 AM      Profile for leftcoastguy     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Wilf

Thank you very much for your comments.

Ditto!


From: leftcoast | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Vansterdam Kid
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posted 09 December 2005 01:59 AM      Profile for Vansterdam Kid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Also, why was the threshold at 50% for the Nisga'a treaty referendum, held in the same province? Are first nations less important than electoral reform?

Why do you keep using this example? It makes no sense. The two situations aren't comprable. Besides, even the BC Liberals have realized that their 'referendum' was pointless, and are now ignoring it. So I have no idea what point your trying to make.


From: bleh.... | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
AltaInd
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posted 09 December 2005 02:05 AM      Profile for AltaInd        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Nope, the sovereignist argument is not hypocrite, the federalist-partitionist argument is. Sovereignism isn't about inventing new borders like you claim, it's not taking an arbitrary group of people and inventing new frontiers based on the right to self-determination, it's about taking an already existing political entity with its own borders and some autonomy and making it completely autonomous. About making Québec sovereign and not inventing a country out of nothing like partitionists would want to do. Worse, it's incoherent for you to argue in favor of partition but would refuse the right of small arbitrary groups to separate from Canada by inventing new borders and political entities from nowhere like you would want done with Québec if a referendum for sovereignty passes.


No country can stand by and let its citizens be kidnapped (if it's a country with any spine at all). If Quebecers are clear on wanting to leave Canada, I'll support the decision but in those areas where voters say they want to remain Canadian that is how it has to be. Otherwise, we are talking about a forced change of citizenship unless those who want to remain Canadian flee Quebec. How can a country let its citizens be unwillingly stripped of their citizenship? (Although I suspect Canada will.)


From: Edmonton | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 09 December 2005 02:11 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
All I ask is that federalists respect sovereignists and vice versa,
The difference is that if federalists lose, they lose forever, and sovereigntists need pay no heed to them again. What's the place of a federalist in Quebec as such after a Yes vote?
quote:
Well if you love Canada so much, you should try to convince people by actions rather than words why Québec can be accomodated and its interests best protected in Canada rather than supporting those undemocratic attempts by your side to block sovereignty by legal rather than political means.
Actions rather than words...what actions do you mean? If you believe that Quebec is already sufficiently protected, then all you have is words, right?
quote:
Worse, it's incoherent for you to argue in favor of partition but would refuse the right of small arbitrary groups to separate from Canada by inventing new borders and political entities from nowhere like you would want done with Québec if a referendum for sovereignty passes.
This makes no sense. The argument is that If Canada is divisble, then so is Quebec.. It's not Canada is divisible or Quebec is divisible. One is contingent on the other. If Canada is not divisible by Quebec, then it isn't divisible. If Quebec divides it, then both are arbitrarily divisible.
quote:
Nope, the sovereignist argument is not hypocrite, the federalist-partitionist argument is. Sovereignism isn't about inventing new borders like you claim, it's not taking an arbitrary group of people and inventing new frontiers based on the right to self-determination, it's about taking an already existing political entity with its own borders and some autonomy and making it completely autonomous. About making Québec sovereign and not inventing a country out of nothing like partitionists would want to do.
This has very interesting effects in the real world. This argument is the precise incentive for, say, France to remain a rigidly unitary state, despite the existence of numerous subcultures. You're basically telling central governments that if you want to stay together, better not let local authorities develop at all.

How so? You're argument is that the criterion for national status is possession of the levers of power. Minorities which lack such possession therefore do not deserve national status. Consequently, the obvious solution for any country that doesn't want to risk giving national status to subcultures is simply to deny any subsidiary group any power beyond what they can achieve in the central government.

What a perverse effect.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 09 December 2005 02:21 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Partition and sovereignty are similar only in the heads of people with absolutely no analytic capacity, ability for nuance or the partisan blindness that silences their common sense.
You say this, but people keep coming up with counterarguments. Your arguments are mostly circular.

Of course, how could they not be circular? You believe that nations and nation-states are natural objects, and that they are natural objects with characteristics that fit precisely your viewpoint and experience of Quebec. You only have such a viewpoint and experience because of your believe in this concept of the nation-state.

Circular.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 09 December 2005 03:36 AM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
The difference is that if federalists lose, they lose forever, and sovereigntists need pay no heed to them again. What's the place of a federalist in Quebec as such after a Yes vote?

So the fact that the situation changes if sovereignists win mean that federalists shouldn't have to respect us and all's fair in their war against us?

quote:
Actions rather than words...what actions do you mean? If you believe that Quebec is already sufficiently protected, then all you have is words, right?

If you think Québec is sufficiently protected, then you do not address the resentment felt by many, many Québécois. People aren't discontent for nothing.

quote:
This makes no sense. The argument is that If Canada is divisble, then so is Quebec.. It's not Canada is divisible or Quebec is divisible. One is contingent on the other. If Canada is not divisible by Quebec, then it isn't divisible. If Quebec divides it, then both are arbitrarily divisible.

No, that is a completely inappropriate comparison, and even a stupid one. As I said, Québec's sovereignty wouldn't invent anything, it would simply make an already existing political entity autonomous. Sovereignty doesn't divide Canada, it takes one member province of the Canadian Federation out of that federation, it doesn't create any new borders, it changes the characteristics of already existing borders from interprovincial to international. To compare that with giving the right to any arbitrary group to create any territory they want, pulling borders out of their asses and inventing political entities out of thin air is completely absurd. It would also make any society impossible to govern, and if you want to apply it to Québec, then by any fairness, you should apply it to Canada as it is, allowing any group to divide Canada any way they want. Otherwise, you are incoherent, unlike sovereignists who don't want to create a new "Québec" based on the places that people who identify with the Québécois nation inhabit but want to transform their province to better represent its interests and particularities.

quote:
This has very interesting effects in the real world. This argument is the precise incentive for, say, France to remain a rigidly unitary state, despite the existence of numerous subcultures. You're basically telling central governments that if you want to stay together, better not let local authorities develop at all.

Exactly. However, minority groups who really want more autonomy will, in a democracy, be very likely to obtain it and will work for it. So, naturally, they will proceed to build themselves political entities to represent them, if those political entities become strong enough, they can then proceed to seek autonomy. What will prevent a central government from repressing such attempts violently? Frankly, if they do, then it means they have no respect towards human rights, and therefore wouldn't even allow such political entity to become autonomous in the first place, so it's a moot point.

Of course it's convenient. A pragmatic, realist approach should be convenient, it's explaining what we feel is right and what works, it's what always happened when people "invented" concepts, whether it was nationalism, liberalism, compassion, solidarity or anything else, it was based by looking at things that worked, extrapolating concepts from them to regulate how society works better to ameliorate our lot in life. In fact, you don't "invent" concepts, no more than you "invent" a triangle or mathematics, you define and codify them. I look at natural tendencies in human attitudes and I analyze it to be able to explain it so that our societies may know how things work and how to react to these tendencies for the good of all.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 09 December 2005 04:34 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Exactly.

Simply amazing.

quote:
However, minority groups who really want more autonomy will, in a democracy, be very likely to obtain it and will work for it. So, naturally, they will proceed to build themselves political entities to represent them, if those political entities become strong enough, they can then proceed to seek autonomy.
This is a fascinating political theory and I find it difficult to find an example of it in practice. Quebec doesn't count because it was already a province by the time Quebec nationalism came about. Is there an example of a unitary state ever peacefully providing genuine autonomy to a minority---fine, the UK is the only example, after centuries of continually manipulating the situation to prevent precisely such an occurance. Which is the normal case. Leaving aside violence, then you consider this manipulation by states to be appropriate for groups that do not fit the definition of "nation" that you have conveniently tailored to fit Quebec's specific history.

Now, of course, the irony of you choosing violence as the criterion for nationhood in such instances is simply too much to bear. I trust you are subtle enough to understand the irony here?

quote:
Of course it's convenient. A pragmatic, realist approach should be convenient, it's explaining what we feel is right and what works, it's what always happened when people "invented" concepts, whether it was nationalism, liberalism, compassion, solidarity or anything else, it was based by looking at things that worked, extrapolating concepts from them to regulate how society works better to ameliorate our lot in life. In fact, you don't "invent" concepts, no more than you "invent" a triangle or mathematics, you define and codify them. I look at natural tendencies in human attitudes and I analyze it to be able to explain it so that our societies may know how things work and how to react to these tendencies for the good of all.
This is clearly not what is meant by "convenient". By "convenient", I really mean "a circular argument whose elements are selected to fit a prior desire." You've observed a single instance---Quebec nationalism---and extrapolated from it a general theory of nationhood that is fitted precisely to Quebec, and then you apply it to all cases including groups inside Quebec, whom you obviously intend to manipulate in such a way so that they can never make a claim similar to your Quebec nationalism!

Having applied your theory this way, when questioned, you point to the example from which you drew the theory, which fits only your example! How many different ways can I express the convoluted and tortured circularity of your arguments? That is what I mean by convenient!

quote:
It would also make any society impossible to govern,

Bingo, dude.

quote:
Otherwise, you are incoherent, unlike sovereignists who don't want to create a new "Québec" based on the places that people who identify with the Québécois nation inhabit but want to transform their province to better represent its interests and particularities.
That's assuming that everyone identifies with the Québécois nation. Of course, they must. You will make them.

quote:
If you think Québec is sufficiently protected, then you do not address the resentment felt by many, many Québécois. People aren't discontent for nothing.
OR they have incorrect concepts. Resentment is generated by many things. For instance, there is resentment from the failure of Meech. How much of that is resentment that Meech itself failed rather than resentment about the material effects of that failure? The 1982 constitution is as much symbol as anything else.

quote:
So the fact that the situation changes if sovereignists win mean that federalists shouldn't have to respect us and all's fair in their war against us?
No, but it means that the cost of failure for one is higher than the cost of failure for the other and what is fair and unfair has to be evaluated in that light. This does not mean that I endorse the Clarity Act itself, of course.

The cost of failure for sovereigntists is practically nothing since what they get is the status quo. The status quo is unacceptable as far as I can tell for mostly sentimental reasons. I'm not saying that sentimental reasons aren't valid, but the population of Quebec isn't suffering in any way that sovereignty would really solve significantly on its own.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Maxx
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posted 09 December 2005 07:46 AM      Profile for Maxx     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
First he flip-flops on private healtcare, now on the clarity act.

Let's me get this straight. Is it Layton who's Mr. Dithers or is it Martin?


From: Don't blame me... I voted Liberal. | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged
MasterDebator
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posted 09 December 2005 07:58 AM      Profile for MasterDebator        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Maxx:
First he flip-flops on private healtcare, now on the clarity act.

Let's me get this straight. Is it Layton who's Mr. Dithers or is it Martin?


On the Clarity Act, I am glad Jack supports it, and I am sure his statements during the 2004 election were intended to indicate where the practical emphasis should be, rather than outright opposition to the Act or any desire to repeal it.

As you know, there was no flip flop on private health care. Except of course, by Dosanjh and Martin, who have resolved to oppose it while allowing it to expand.

Tell me, Maxx, as a Liberal does it bother you excessively that people have coined some disrespectful nicknames for the Leader of the Liberal Party, such as Mr Dithers?


From: Goose Country Road, Prince George, BC | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
Cartman
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posted 09 December 2005 11:35 AM      Profile for Cartman        Edit/Delete Post
I don't get these issues at all.

In terms of the question being unclear, this is pure ROC bullshit. When people go to the polls, they realize they are not choosing between Coke and Pepsi. They understand they are empowering their politicians to separate and the rest are details their government will resolve. The language being sssociation, separation, leaving, visiting tourist, whatever, I am sure voters know what they are doing. Let us stop pretending they are too dumb to get it.

In terms of the Clarity Act, this is more bullshit. If separation is a form of blackmail, then they will negotiate. If they truly want to leave, then there is nothing anyone can ever do to prevent it anyways. Canada can then have its own vote about the kind of relationship it will want with Quebec.

Whatever Jack thinks about this doesn't mean shit. If anyone deserves criticism, it is Paul Martin for bringing the damn issue up in the first place saying it is a referendum on sovereignty. Typical Liberal strategy. Willing to destroy Canada in order to obtain votes. After all, the terms Liberal and Canada are one in the same.


From: Bring back Audra!!!!! | Registered: Nov 2004  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 09 December 2005 03:16 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
This is a fascinating political theory and I find it difficult to find an example of it in practice. Quebec doesn't count because it was already a province by the time Quebec nationalism came about. Is there an example of a unitary state ever peacefully providing genuine autonomy to a minority---fine, the UK is the only example, after centuries of continually manipulating the situation to prevent precisely such an occurance. Which is the normal case. Leaving aside violence, then you consider this manipulation by states to be appropriate for groups that do not fit the definition of "nation" that you have conveniently tailored to fit Quebec's specific history.

Normal that Québec fits the criterion, it is in history probably the most successful democratic movement for sovereignty. So it's normal that any concept worth a damn should make sure that Québec is included, since it is the most democratic and respectful example of it. If you try to shoot down Québec, then you tell every other nation that the democratic peaceful way to access autonomy is closed, so if they want autonomy, they better take those guns and start shooting.

BTW, the UK is not the only example, Spain also is, in 1978, the new Spanish Constitution made of Catalognia an autonomous region. If you dig a bit more, you'll probably find more, not bad for about 2 centuries of democracy.

quote:
This is clearly not what is meant by "convenient". By "convenient", I really mean "a circular argument whose elements are selected to fit a prior desire." You've observed a single instance---Quebec nationalism---and extrapolated from it a general theory of nationhood that is fitted precisely to Quebec, and then you apply it to all cases including groups inside Quebec, whom you obviously intend to manipulate in such a way so that they can never make a claim similar to your Quebec nationalism!

Having applied your theory this way, when questioned, you point to the example from which you drew the theory, which fits only your example! How many different ways can I express the convoluted and tortured circularity of your arguments? That is what I mean by convenient!


You get it wrong, Québec needs no theoretical justification, as a matter of fact, no such successful movement never needed any. It needs only to be explained as the way that a democratic and peaceful movement for self-determination can happen. There is nothing circular in it, no more than any other concept used in politics are circular, people observing normal tendencies, defining them then deciding what to do about them.. It's just that you are too stuck up to acknowledge reality, you would want reality to be different so you try and deny it. The questionning of Québec's right to self-determination is in fact quite new because it is fueled by ultra-federalists who, afraid to lose, decide to refuse what before was accepted naturally as something that made sense, if a province can join Canada by a referendum, a province should be able to leave Canada by a referendum.

quote:
That's assuming that everyone identifies with the Québécois nation. Of course, they must. You will make them.

No, they don't need to. You see that's where you show how inadequate and how you are unable to understand sovereignism. Sovereignism isn't about taking a group of people with the same national identity and creating a new country with arbitrary frontiers for it to allow a nationally "pure" country. Your continual claims that this is true are bullshit. Sovereignism is about making a province sovereign because of its national characteristics that are very different from the societies around it and thus is believed that its interests would be better represented by a sovereign country. The reason you cannot understand is that you refuse collective realities, you're a trudeauist with its entirely individualist way of conceiving societies. As long as you stick to that stupid dogma, you won't be able to understand Québec nor any national movement because you refuse to acknoledge the existence of collective dynamics.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 09 December 2005 04:00 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Spain is not a good example because it falls under the "violence" category: the autonomism followed immediately after the end of Franco, who was a fascist doofus---it's not equivalent to Blairist devolution in the UK.

Your comments on "theoretical justification" misconstrue what I mean by "theory." I don't mean it in the sense of something an academic wrote down in a university. I mean "theory" in a very general, cognitive sense: an implicit theory underlies most motivations to act, distinguish, or justify. There's nothing "unnatural" about a theory. So in order to delimit the justifications for sovereignty, you must implicitly define an ontology of nations and states, and from, this ontology you obtain a theory.

Now we are talking about the moral justifications for a particular ontology of nations and states. It's irrelevant to say that it "emerged naturally" or something like that. If it were relevant, it would be equivalent to saying, "it's morally neutral." I suspect you don't believe that sovereigntist distinctoins are morally neutral.

It's not that I don't accept a concept of "collective dynamics." It's that I simply evaluate the moral status of collective dynamics differently, because my theory of its natural status is different---that is, I don't generalize from a single example.

quote:
Sovereignism isn't about taking a group of people with the same national identity and creating a new country with arbitrary frontiers for it to allow a nationally "pure" country.
Then whence your "exactly" from the previous post. Note that this is also miscontrues my argument. I am not accusing sovereigntism of being a desire to impose a uniform identity. ie, I'm not equating it to some variety of fascism. I'm instead accusing it of using a particular arbitrary circumstance (borders and governmental structure) to selectively approve or deny national rights to inconvenient identities. That's quite different, and it's not even something that you can deny.

In fact, you don't deny it. Instead, you deny that it is arbitrary. I have given you ample arguments to demonstrate why it is morally arbitrary, if not also "naturally" so. You respond to my arguments with invective, because I question what is to you an axiomatic aspect of your perception, but is clearly entirely contingent to me.


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 09 December 2005 11:09 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
I'm instead accusing it of using a particular arbitrary circumstance (borders and governmental structure) to selectively approve or deny national rights to inconvenient identities. That's quite different, and it's not even something that you can deny.

I can deny it all right. Borders and government structures are not arbitrary, they are the logical conclusions of natural human divisions. A State that would try to bring together two separate groups who don't want to is bound to explode. People work to have the political structures that correspond to their social realities, that's even more true in democracies. Societies aren't arbitrary, they're the results of the interactions of people together based on their natural tendencies. Sure if you wiped people off the Earth, borders wouldn't exist, that doesn't make them any more arbitrary than anything else in social or political matters. And sure, the exact location of borders may seem arbitrary (why is it there instead of 100m away?). But the general fact is not arbitrary, on one side you will find people who have in majority a certain identity and be part of a certain society, and on the other you will have people with a different identity in majority and be part of another society.

Not that you are much better, in front of having to strike a balance between respect for collectivities' right to self-determination and stability, you merely choose to ignore collectivites' right to self-determination. You absolutely refuse that political structures may change to reflect the people under them. That by the way is generalized from a single example: you like Canada as it is so you want to find a way to justify taking all actions necessary to keep a society inside, even if it is politically mature and wishes to become sovereign.

quote:
I have given you ample arguments to demonstrate why it is morally arbitrary, if not also "naturally" so.

No you haven't, you merely say a lot of things that don't make sense, compare oranges and apples then claim that this confusion makes you right, when the only reason you see confusion is that you want to see it and refuse nuance that would clear the situation for you. You see no difference between a society like Québec and a english-speaking neighborhood in a city like Westmount, so how the hell can you hope to understand anything if you can't make that simple difference?

quote:
It's not that I don't accept a concept of "collective dynamics." It's that I simply evaluate the moral status of collective dynamics differently, because my theory of its natural status is different---that is, I don't generalize from a single example.

You generalize nothing, you have no theory, no nothing. You merely deny every theory of collective dynamics so as to maintain the status quo because that is your preferred state. So in the end you do like Trudeau, refuse to recognize collectivities and try to create a completely individualist perception of reality that is completely inadequate because men are social animals.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Carter
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posted 09 December 2005 11:15 PM      Profile for Carter        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Borders and government structures are not arbitrary, they are the logical conclusions of natural human divisions.
Well, that just about says it all...

From: Goin' Down the Road | Registered: Mar 2005  |  IP: Logged
Erik Redburn
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posted 09 December 2005 11:20 PM      Profile for Erik Redburn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Hope someone informs the Mistisanni Cree, Innu and Inuit that their "natural division" lies within New France, rather than their cousins further west...
From: Broke but not bent. | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged
radiorahim
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posted 09 December 2005 11:35 PM      Profile for radiorahim     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The reality on the ground is Clarity Act or no Clarity Act, if the majority of the folks in Quebec vote in favour of sovereignty in a referendum, the game changes.

The two "sides" are going to have to sit down and negotiate some kind of new deal. Its not a legal issue, its a political one.

What's going to be different in a sovereign Quebec? IMHO, not much. So why get all bent out of shape about it?


From: a Micro$oft-free computer | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 09 December 2005 11:46 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Well, that just about says it all...

Yup, that says that I'm not one of your gang, the ones in a political "teenage rebellion" who have to try and claim that everything that exists is stupid and they've got the solution to everything by merely supporting the opposite of everything that is.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
peterjcassidy
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posted 09 December 2005 11:48 PM      Profile for peterjcassidy     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by radiorahim:
The reality on the ground is Clarity Act or no Clarity Act, if the majority of the folks in Quebec vote in favour of sovereignty in a referendum, the game changes.


As I understand it, that was what the Supreme Court said when the Liberals wanted it to rule any attempt by Quebec to separate would be illegal. If the majority of a population in a certain jursdiction of a county want to separate, the court said you either negotiate the terms or abandon the pretence of democracy and go to war.

Jack in the 2004 election was expressing NDP policy in opposing the Clarity Act and I would much much have preferred him sticking to that NDP policy.


From: Screaming in language no-one understands.. | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 10 December 2005 12:13 AM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
No, I understand it very well, it is Chrétien's "plan B", in other words the "change the rules of the game so that sovereignists can't win" plan. It does intend to restrict the right to self-determination of Québec by giving arbitrary rights to the federal government to veto the decision of the people of Québec, of refusing their decision and denying them what they democratically decide. Tell me, if it doesn't restrict that right, then that means that in the case of a winning referendum, Québec will become sovereign and be recognized as such even by the federal government if the federal government refuses to negotiate by using the Clarity Act. That's what you're saying and it's not making sense, why would ultra-federalists want to uphold it so bad if it changes nothing to the situation?

First of all simonvallee, Quebec's "rights" are spelled out in the Constitution. Actually, they are the rights of individual Quebecers and don't really belong to the province of Quebec. Oh, there's that business about citizens being mre important than "collectives" again. But, nowhere in the Canada Act or the BNA Act that it replaced, is it written that any province has a right to succession. So the notion that Ottawa is taking away a "right" with the Clarity Act is a fallicy, that so called "right" never existed.

On the contrary, with the Clarity Act, Canada is finally exercising its rights in the whole Quebec question. Don't forget, all the planning and investment within Canada over the last 138 years has occured with the assumption that Quebec was a province of Canada an not some future independent state. Canada as a nation has protected and enhanced the civil liberties of Quebecers and all Canadians through out that time. Canada's laws actually protected french culture in Quebec during this time period. Quebecers are ofcoarse duely represented in the House and Commons. And Canada's beliefs in liberal democracy allow us to accept the separatist BQ party as a legitimate political party within the House of Commons. Canada fulfills its obligations to Quebec and the PQ should realize that Quebec has obligations to Canada. The PQ can not simply walk away into the sunset with Quebec under its well parfumed arm.

There is an understanding that Ottawa should be obliged to negotiate in good faith a separation ammendment to the Constitution for Quebec should it be demonstrated that separation is the general concensous of the people. That concensous should be expressed strongly and clearly. For there can be no more serious choice made than to make yourself a stranger in your own country. Just look at Conrad Black.

This is not, as you and the PQ like to put it, a "game". Nor is separation a "project". Both terms are PQ spin to suggest that if things go badly for Quebecers they can just start again the next day with a clean slate - PQ propoganda. Like it or not the Quebec government must demonstrate to the Canadian government that separation is the clear concensous of those who live in Quebec.

By the way, if the Canadian government does not recognize an independent Quebec, no other nation worth knowing will. Even Parizeau realized that. He got it all ass backwards but he did understand it.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 10 December 2005 12:40 AM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
First of all simonvallee, Quebec's "rights" are spelled out in the Constitution. Actually, they are the rights of individual Quebecers and don't really belong to the province of Quebec. Oh, there's that business about citizens being mre important than "collectives" again. But, nowhere in the Canada Act or the BNA Act that it replaced, is it written that any province has a right to succession. So the notion that Ottawa is taking away a "right" with the Clarity Act is a fallicy, that so called "right" never existed.

A right needs not be written down to exist, Québec as a different society always had the right to self-determination, and still got it. And citizens aren't more important than collectives, or vice versa, the two aren't in opposition one to the other, they're complementary. You cannot consider individuals without considering the fact that they are part of a collectivity, and cannot consider collectivities without considereing the fact that they are made up of individuals. They are both faces of the same coin, we are at the same part separate entities and part of a bigger whole.

quote:
On the contrary, with the Clarity Act, Canada is finally exercising its rights in the whole Quebec question.

The RoC has no more rights on that than we Québécois have on the matter of Americans' self-determination.

quote:
Canada fulfills its obligations to Quebec and the PQ should realize that Quebec has obligations to Canada.

Sure, some obligations, like respecting the rights of Canadians to choose for themselves what to do with their lives (and expecting the same in return) and taking a part of the debt that the federal government has obtained in its name, integrating federal laws when it becomes sovereign rather than invent a whole new set, respect Canada's engagements taken in its name internationally, etc... But not to ask like a beggar if we have the right to breath and walk on our own.

quote:
Like it or not the Quebec government must demonstrate to the Canadian government that separation is the clear concensous of those who live in Quebec.

We have nothing to demonstrate to the federal government. If we choose to renounce our membership in the Federation, it has no right to try to prevent us to do so. In a divorce, you don't need mutual agreement to obtain it, if one wants to do it, then it happens even if the other one doesn't want it. This is analoguous.

quote:
By the way, if the Canadian government does not recognize an independent Quebec, no other nation worth knowing will.

France would, the official stance of Paris has been that France would support Québec in "whatever choice it takes for its future". In short, not support for independence but would recognize an independent Québec.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 10 December 2005 11:08 AM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
France would, the official stance of Paris has been that France would support Québec in "whatever choice it takes for its future". In short, not support for independence but would recognize an independent Québec.

France? Big deal. But still, don't count on France's support when push comes to shove. France will take its cues from Ottawa with respect to any referendum outcome.

Indeed you might want to keep France off your side.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 10 December 2005 07:57 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
France? Big deal. But still, don't count on France's support when push comes to shove. France will take its cues from Ottawa with respect to any referendum outcome.

Don't count on France playing the poodle to Ottawa, it didn't play it for the US and it won't play it for a less influent country either. You shouldn't also count on much support for the hard line, most countries will just want things to be as calm as possible and to be solved peacefully, for many reasons (including economic reasons). Canada will be pushed to settle the issue peacefully, internationally and locally, and ignoring it and trying to prevent sovereignty after a winning referendum is not "peaceful".


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 10 December 2005 11:28 PM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Don't count on France playing the poodle to Ottawa, it didn't play it for the US and it won't play it for a less influent country either. You shouldn't also count on much support for the hard line, most countries will just want things to be as calm as possible and to be solved peacefully, for many reasons (including economic reasons). Canada will be pushed to settle the issue peacefully, internationally and locally, and ignoring it and trying to prevent sovereignty after a winning referendum is not "peaceful".

Hard line, maybe not. Law and logic, absolutely.

Settling the issue would mean assuring all parties that the concensous of the people in Quebec is that they genuinely have chosen to separate from Canada. The international community would certainly not expect Canada to roll over and play dead like the PQ demand. Nor would other nations expect Canada to abandon those would have repeatedly expressed their desire to stay Canadian. Which brings us back to such subjects as clarity and partition. Sorry.

And as for France, I'd be more concerned about how the US will react to a Quebec UDI. When it comes to peace and stability Canada and the Canadian government is the devil they know. Quebec and the PQ are the impractical, illogical devil that they don't know. I'm certain they would prefer Canada to continue the management of their northern borders rather than (as they will no doubt see it) some upstart banana-split (get it? hehe!) republic.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
Lard Tunderin' Jeezus
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posted 11 December 2005 11:38 AM      Profile for Lard Tunderin' Jeezus   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
trying to prevent sovereignty after a winning referendum is not "peaceful".
This, of course, is the ultimate deception foisted upon the public by the separatist elite. Never in history has a country been torn apart 'peacefully'.

From: ... | Registered: Aug 2001  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 11 December 2005 11:44 AM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Lard tunderin' jeesus:
This, of course, is the ultimate deception foisted upon the public by the separatist elite. Never in history has a country been torn apart 'peacefully'.

It is also always and only the separatist who threaten violence over the very relevent issue of partition.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
jrootham
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posted 11 December 2005 01:24 PM      Profile for jrootham     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
This, of course, is the ultimate deception foisted upon the public by the separatist elite. Never in history has a country been torn apart 'peacefully'.

Two counterexamples: Norway - Sweden and Czech Republic - Slovakia.


From: Toronto | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Jughead
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posted 11 December 2005 02:12 PM      Profile for Jughead     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
As expected, at least one former candidate has come out to denounce Jack's policy shift.

Should get some media coverage tomorrow.


From: uhuh | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
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posted 11 December 2005 02:15 PM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post
Who is the former candidate?

Frankly, I think it's a non-issue outside Quebec, and the NDP is a non-issue inside Quebec.


From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jughead
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posted 11 December 2005 02:17 PM      Profile for Jughead     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
That's the point. What kind of a party simply writes off 1/3 of the population? If that's really a component of the NDP strategy, it could be summarized as follows:

2006- Lose
2010- Lose
2014- Lose
2018- Lose
...


From: uhuh | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
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posted 11 December 2005 02:21 PM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jughead:
That's the point. What kind of a party simply writes off 1/3 of the population? If that's really a component of the NDP strategy, it could be summarized as follows:

The NDP's lack of success in Quebec has absolutely nothing to do with the Clarity Act. It has to do with there being only one credible federalist option.


From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jughead
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posted 11 December 2005 02:24 PM      Profile for Jughead     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
What happens to the Liberals in this election is going to be reminiscent of what happened to Mulroney's Tories.

The level of disdain is unbelievable, and I live in a Liberal riding!

Don't kid yourself that the Liberals are the standard bearers of federalism here. They are the single greatest threat to Federalism in the current Canadian political climate.


From: uhuh | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
Reality. Bites.
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posted 11 December 2005 02:28 PM      Profile for Reality. Bites.        Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Jughead:
What happens to the Liberals in this election is going to be reminiscent of what happened to Mulroney's Tories.

You mean they're going to get the largest majority in Canadian history?


From: Gone for good | Registered: Aug 2004  |  IP: Logged
tallyho
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posted 11 December 2005 02:28 PM      Profile for tallyho        Edit/Delete Post
Jughead, there's a tradition for the NDP to uphold:

1962 lose
1963 lose
1965 lose
1968 lose
1972 lose
1974 lose
1979 lose
1980 lose
1984 lose
1988 lose
1993 lose
1997 lose
2000 lose
2004 lose

Quebec and Alberta 2006 NO SEATS


From: The NDP sells out Alberta workers | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
spatrioter
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posted 11 December 2005 02:31 PM      Profile for spatrioter     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Stones. Glass houses.
From: Trinity-Spadina | Registered: Mar 2002  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 11 December 2005 06:59 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
It is also always and only the separatist who threaten violence over the very relevent issue of partition.

Partition is not a relevant issue, unless as a fear tactic to scare Québécois into voting NO. Partition has always been a tactic that bred instability and violence, to divide a society upon arbitrary borders invented just to spite in the face of the people who decided to become sovereign breeds resentment, hostility and mistrust on both side, and most often, violence (see Northern Ireland and Palestine). On the contrary, there are many cases of societies becoming sovereign that resulted in no violence, Scandinavian countries are an example, the Czech Republic and Slovakia are an other and the former soviet republics who left the Russian Federation in the early 90s provide a lot of other examples where sovereignty did not leave to violence, the only place where it did lead to violence was in Chechnya, where the russian Federal government decide to try to stop it from become independent.

History teaches us that when a society leaves a union or federation, the question of whether there is violence or not is not in the hands of the society that becomes independent, but in the hands of the government of the union/federation they leave.

quote:
Settling the issue would mean assuring all parties that the concensous of the people in Quebec is that they genuinely have chosen to separate from Canada. The international community would certainly not expect Canada to roll over and play dead like the PQ demand. Nor would other nations expect Canada to abandon those would have repeatedly expressed their desire to stay Canadian. Which brings us back to such subjects as clarity and partition. Sorry.

Canada wouldn't abandon anyone by accepting to play a constructive role instead of trying to sow violence and hatred like using the "clarity act" or supporting partition would. The people who live in Québec have chosen to live in that society, and if they only want to remain Canadians, they can get dual citizenship, if they want to remain in Canada, they can move to a Canadian province, but if they want their society to remain a Canadian province, then it's not their individual choice but a collective choice and they have to be ready to accept that the choice that triumphs may not be the one they favored, just like sovereignists did twice in the past.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
pebbles
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posted 11 December 2005 07:41 PM      Profile for pebbles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Canada wouldn't abandon anyone by accepting to play a constructive role instead of trying to sow violence and hatred like using the "clarity act"

How does the Clarity Act "sow violence and hatred"?

quote:
or supporting partition would.

If the partition of Quebec would "sow violence and hatred", would the partition of Canada also not do the same?


From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 11 December 2005 09:55 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
How does the Clarity Act "sow violence and hatred"?

Denying the popular will, especially on very important issues, has always done so. If a referendum wins, the large majority of people will expect Québec to be sovereign, deny that to them and you'll anger them a lot and their anger shall be justified. You won't either get a lot of "hurras" from the NO side, only federalist extremists would be happy. For a very large majority of Québécois, it will be a gesture of national oppression on Québec from the part of the federal government. I always said that Québécois don't hate Canadians, not even sovereignists, but to have the government that represents Canadians seek to oppress the people of Québec by denying them this would generate hatred just like every act of oppression on this world ever did.

quote:
If the partition of Quebec would "sow violence and hatred", would the partition of Canada also not do the same?

Probably, but then again, partition can in no way be compared to sovereignty. Sovereignty is about taking an existent State with its recognized borders and giving it full autonomy, partition is about someone using force to draw new borders and create new States from nothing according to ethnic and cultural divisions, about cutting a society in pieces. Only idiots would fail to see the obvious difference between the two.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
pebbles
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posted 11 December 2005 10:14 PM      Profile for pebbles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Denying the popular will, especially on very important issues, has always done so.

How does the Clarity Act "deny the popular will"?

HAVE YOU EVER READ IT?

The Act does nothing to bind Quebec, its government, its legislature, or the population at large. It binds the government and parliament of Canada.

quote:
If a referendum wins, the large majority of people will expect Québec to be sovereign,

If the "win" is 2,500,001 to 2,500,000, on a 1980 or 1995 style question? Don't count on it.

quote:
For a very large majority of Québécois, it will be a gesture of national oppression on Québec from the part of the federal government.

Blah blah blah, and that reminds me, I'm late for my neighbourhood Committee for the Oppression of Quebec meeting.

Listen: Quebec may choose to secede from Canada.

Canada has a say in that process if it happens.

The end.

quote:
Probably, but then again, partition can in no way be compared to sovereignty.

Why not?

If Quebecers in some parts of Quebec want to change their sovereign status, and Quebecer in other parts do not... what's the difference?

Why should Repentigny get to decide the sovereign status of Restigouche? Why should Saint-Hyacinthe get to decide the status of Salluit? Sherbrooke, that of Shawville? Blainville, Blanc Sablon?

If Canada doesn't get to tell Quebec what to do, why should les purs et durs get to tell federalists, on the fringes of Quebec, whose desire to remain Canadian can easily be accomodate from a geographical point of view, what they should do?

quote:
Sovereignty is about taking an existent State with its recognized borders

Where does the principle of "with its recognized borders" come from? How is this inherent to the right of a putative state to sovereignty?

quote:
and giving it full autonomy, partition is about someone using force to draw new borders and create new States from nothing according to ethnic and cultural divisions,

That sounds a lot like Quebec separatism to me.

quote:
about cutting a society in pieces. Only idiots would fail to see the obvious difference between the two.

Only hypocrites would be willfully blind to the obvious similarities.

If Canada is divisible, Quebec is divisible.

[ 11 December 2005: Message edited by: pebbles ]


From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Erik Redburn
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posted 11 December 2005 10:21 PM      Profile for Erik Redburn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:

quote: How does the Clarity Act "sow violence and hatred"?

Denying the popular will, especially on very important issues, has always done so. If a referendum wins, the large majority of people will expect Québec to be sovereign, deny that to them and you'll anger them a lot and their anger shall be justified. ....


I didn't know the clarity act would deny Quebeckers the right to secede if the majority chooses to vote Oui, is there something in there we haven't been told?

quote:

Probably, but then again, partition can in no way be compared to sovereignty. Sovereignty is about taking an existent State with its recognized borders and giving it full autonomy, partition is about someone using force to draw new borders and create new States from nothing according to ethnic and cultural divisions, about cutting a society in pieces. Only idiots would fail to see the obvious difference between the two.


Don't they teach Quebeckers that they're actually just one province of a larger nation state, one that happens to be recognised in the UN and all other international dealings? Has been for sometime now.


From: Broke but not bent. | Registered: Feb 2004  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 11 December 2005 10:26 PM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
Sovereignty is about taking an existent State with its recognized borders and giving it full autonomy.

More PQ spin.

Quebec is not an existing state. Quebec has never been a state and this notion of statehood is blatently false. Quebec is a province within an existing and recognized state called Canada. Before that, it was a colony of the Britsh Empire and then before that a colony of the French Empire. Sorry but Quebecers were liberated in 1867 by Canada.

As for Quebec's existing borders, for the exception of where they meet with the US, Quebec borders are interprovincial not international. When the PQ talk about how important it is for the existing borders to be left alone they forget that they are the ones who are trying to change them.

And don't get me started on Labrador.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
rubberbandman
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posted 12 December 2005 01:38 AM      Profile for rubberbandman     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
the mobility rights in the charter say that i have the right to live and work and travel in quebec whenever i want without a passport. quebec belongs to every canadian, not just the ones presently living there.

if quebec separates, the people of the roc lose a right. if quebec separates, the people living in quebec gain NO rights, because the people of quebec are already self determining and self governing within the federal canadian framework.

so if the people of quebec are not oppressed in any way, and more rights will be lost than gained if quebec separates, quebec does not have the right to separate.

quebec is not bosnia or croatia, its not palestine, its not chechnya, its not tibet, its not east timor, its not angola. quebec has no reason to disrupt a status quo that is not injust.

a referendum is like a poll - its a snapshot. for almost 140 years quebec has existed inside canada with more quebecors favoring federalism than indepedence.

democracy is about more than just majoritarian rule. its about rights and responsibilities set out in a social contract that in the canadian context has not been broken. and just because a pq premiere wouldnt sign a constitution doesnt mean the social contract wasnt established with the people of quebec.

and every society is a distinct society. no two societies are the same. but what makes quebec so much more distinct than any other society in canada.

and what makes quebec distinct anyways? it's not the church, it's not the language, because these things are found elsewhere in canada.

instead of the parochial mindset of independence work on growing the french presence in canada.

just what is so offensive to quebecers about canadian civic nationalism? you may say why should quebec stay, but should they leave?

and what of the northern cree and montreal island? do they stay Canadian?


From: bellow sea level | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 12 December 2005 02:59 AM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
How does the Clarity Act "deny the popular will"?

It seeks to impose a legal cadre that would justify actions taken by the federal government to step in and block Québec from doing what a majority of its people have spoken in favor of. Therefore denying the popular will of Québec.

quote:
If the "win" is 2,500,001 to 2,500,000, on a 1980 or 1995 style question? Don't count on it.

Even then, that's the rule of democracy and most people abide by it.

quote:
Listen: Quebec may choose to secede from Canada.

Canada has a say in that process if it happens.


Canada may have a say in the process, but it has no right to block it. Personally, if Canada refuses a winning referendum, I'll never pay my taxes to the federal government again, and I'll refuse to recognize its authority, and I think a lot of Québécois would do just the same, if not even more.

quote:
"Probably, but then again, partition can in no way be compared to sovereignty."

Why not?


I've explained it, sovereignty is about taking a pre-existing State and society and making it fully autonomous. Transforming its borders into international borders and taking back all authority that were delegated to the federal government. That's a lot different than going around and arbitrarily inventing borders, States and governments based on cultural and ethnic divides, without any historical legitimacy for these borders, just the violent imposition of them. If there was no difference, then Québec could, even in the event of a losing referendum, take the parts that voted YES and leave. Or hell, just make the francophone vote, or those who can prove that their ancesters have been there for X generation and who speak French, that'd be truly making up a new country on only ethnic and cultural lines. That's not what anybody wants, because that'd be dumb, would create instability and much resentment, and would make society ungovernable. That's why sovereignism and decent federalists say whichever way Québec goes, it goes whole, not parts of it bargained like chips in a poker game.

quote:
Only hypocrites would be willfully blind to the obvious similarities.

If Canada is divisible, Quebec is divisible.


Beyond the fact that there's a new country in the end, there is no similarity between the two, none at all. Even in historical results it's different, every example of partition in history is bathed in blood and created great political instability, but examples of sub-national governments acceding to sovereignty are numerous and most led to stable and peaceful countries.











quote:
Quebec is not an existing state. Quebec has never been a state and this notion of statehood is blatently false. Quebec is a province within an existing and recognized state called Canada. Before that, it was a colony of the Britsh Empire and then before that a colony of the French Empire. Sorry but Quebecers were liberated in 1867 by Canada.

Québec is an existing State, it has borders, a government with some autonomy, so it's a State. The word you seek is "country", but the fact that Québec was never an independant country doesn't change anything to the fact that Québec is a State, that it has its own borders and that, in fact, Québec created Canada and not the reverse. Remember that Canada was created because British colonies (which would become the provinces) decided to band together to face the US, if that Federation never occured, Québec would be an independent country right now.

quote:
As for Quebec's existing borders, for the exception of where they meet with the US, Quebec borders are interprovincial not international. When the PQ talk about how important it is for the existing borders to be left alone they forget that they are the ones who are trying to change them.

Nope, we're not talking about changing borders, we're talking about redefining their proprieties from interprovincial to international. Only partitionists are talking about changing borders.











quote:
posted 12 December 2005 01:38 AM Profile for rubberbandman Send New Private Message Edit/Delete Post Reply With Quote the mobility rights in the charter say that i have the right to live and work and travel in quebec whenever i want without a passport. quebec belongs to every canadian, not just the ones presently living there.

if quebec separates, the people of the roc lose a right. if quebec separates, the people living in quebec gain NO rights, because the people of quebec are already self determining and self governing within the federal canadian framework.

so if the people of quebec are not oppressed in any way, and more rights will be lost than gained if quebec separates, quebec does not have the right to separate.


1- Mobility rights can be negotiated in an economic association following political sovereignty.
2- The right to become sovereign is not dependent on the amount of individual rights lost/won. Your demonstration is laughable. I mean, you may say that no rights are won so Québec shouldn't separate, but to say it hasn't the right is just plain ridiculous.

quote:
quebec is not bosnia or croatia, its not palestine, its not chechnya, its not tibet, its not east timor, its not angola. quebec has no reason to disrupt a status quo that is not injust.

We have, we feel badly represented and feel limited by our membership in the Canadian Federation, and differ strongly in our view of how the future should happen (more federal power or more provincial power). You may not agree, but if those reasons are reasons enough for Québécois, there's nothing you can do.

quote:
a referendum is like a poll - its a snapshot. for almost 140 years quebec has existed inside canada with more quebecors favoring federalism than indepedence.

We could say that about all elections, still they decide who has power and who doesn't. And the fact that something has been for X years doesn't mean that it should continue on. Marriage has been limited to a man and a woman in western countries for centuries, but we changed it.

quote:
democracy is about more than just majoritarian rule. its about rights and responsibilities set out in a social contract that in the canadian context has not been broken. and just because a pq premiere wouldnt sign a constitution doesnt mean the social contract wasnt established with the people of quebec.

Oh, it is about rights and responsibilities, and one of those rights is the right to self-determination of a society. Majoritarianism is more on the federalist side here, claiming that the Canadian majority that lives outside of Québec should be able to impose its views on sovereignty and deny the right to self-determination of Québec.

quote:
and what makes quebec distinct anyways? it's not the church, it's not the language, because these things are found elsewhere in canada.

instead of the parochial mindset of independence work on growing the french presence in canada.


It is in part the language because nowhere else in Canada have French as the language used in public life, in politics, business and everyday life. New-Brunswick comes close though. There's also the different culture, the totally different political landscape and the different national identification of the people there. And increasing the number of people who speak French in Canada would do NOTHING towards preserving the French culture in Canada, if people aren't able to use the language to live their lives without having to learn another, they can't contribute to the culture, which isn't an individual trait but the result of a collectivity. Canadian multiculturalism would lead to the folklorization of French culture, no matter how much money is spent.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
rubberbandman
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posted 12 December 2005 03:16 AM      Profile for rubberbandman     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
why does simon use the pronoun "we". since when does simon speak for all of quebec, as if his opinion is the distilation of one homogenous quebec voice.

face it mr. pur laine quebec de souche, you do not speak for quebec and for the last 140 years quebecers on a whole have sided with my opinion, not yours. thats why you always lose the referendum. and if a poll is like an election, than fine, hold a referendum to join up again with canada in five years should the referendum actually produce a yes vote, which will never happen anyways, because most quebecers disagree with you.

and you have yet to name one legitimate grievence. you have yet to outline how quebec is not already self determining inside the federal framework, and you have offered nothing but vague generalities when defining the "uniqueness" of "quebec society", something which you claim to speak for with its apparent one voice.

and for the record, quebec, as with any province, belongs to every canadian, not just the ones living in the province. a udi is not a right.

and confederation cannot be compared to a marriage because more than two people entered into the marriage contract. but i forgot that separatists always forget about the first nations. but sepatation is as much a legal issue, to use your analogy, as it is a political one.


From: bellow sea level | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
rubberbandman
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posted 12 December 2005 03:19 AM      Profile for rubberbandman     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
oh yeah

quote:
The right to become sovereign is not dependent on the amount of individual rights lost/won

study your international law friend.

and for the record, quebec may be a nation, but it is not a state. not even the pq or the bloc see it that way.

you might want to play a little catch up and read the recent remark by bouchard

[ 12 December 2005: Message edited by: rubberbandman ]


From: bellow sea level | Registered: Feb 2005  |  IP: Logged
Clayton Tucker
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posted 12 December 2005 10:11 AM      Profile for Clayton Tucker     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Nope, we're not talking about changing borders, we're talking about redefining their proprieties from interprovincial to international. Only partitionists are talking about changing borders.

Changing the properties of a border means changing a border.


From: Guelph, Ontario | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
elixir
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posted 12 December 2005 11:35 AM      Profile for elixir     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The Clarity Act is the death of hope. It is part of the deepening authoritarianism that has gone hand in hand with the neo-liberal agenda. It was yet another idea hatched by the Manning-Harper Reformers and implemented by the Chrétien-Martin Liberals.

That Layton now supports it is a disgrace.


From: Toronto | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
pebbles
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Babbler # 6400

posted 12 December 2005 12:18 PM      Profile for pebbles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:
It seeks to impose a legal cadre that would justify actions taken by the federal government to step in and block Québec from doing what a majority of its people have spoken in favor of. Therefore denying the popular will of Québec.

Please cite the section or sections of the Clarity Act which would do this.

quote:

Even then, that's the rule of democracy and most people abide by it.

If you think Quebec or RoC would rush to sovereignty on one vote on a 1980 or 1995 question, you are stoned.

quote:

Canada may have a say in the process, but it has no right to block it.

Who says anything about "blocking"?

Cite. Thanks!

quote:

Personally, if Canada refuses a winning referendum, I'll never pay my taxes to the federal government again, and I'll refuse to recognize its authority, and I think a lot of Québécois would do just the same, if not even more.

Hell, I would too! But it has to be a WINNING referendum, not a "MAYBE" one.

quote:
I've explained it, sovereignty is about taking a pre-existing State and society and making it fully autonomous.

No, it's about people chosing how and by whom they wish to be governed.

If Quebec overall choses to secede, but parts of Quebec chose to counter-secede, then democracy is respected. Isn't it?

Why are Quebec's existing boundaries sacred (except to the extent that Quebec nationalist myth-makers think they can be expanded)?

quote:
Transforming its borders into international borders and taking back all authority that were delegated to the federal government.

The federal government is not a "delegate", no more than the provinces are.

quote:
That's a lot different than going around and arbitrarily inventing borders,

Which of Quebec's borders, other than the four which follow rivers, are NOT "arbitrarily invented"?

quote:
States and governments based on cultural and ethnic divides, without any historical legitimacy for these borders,

Quebec nationalist myth-makers do this all the time, proposing new borders for Quebec -- which would expand the territory of Quebec -- without any regard for "historical legitimacy".

Why couldn't or shouldn't borders be based on how people in Quebec actually vote? If areas of Quebec which are contiguous to other parts of Canada vote to remain in Canada, why shouldn't that will be respected? Why is democracy, in the Quebec nationalist mythical universe, a one-way street? Why the two-tier "respect for the will of the people"?

quote:
just the violent imposition of them.

What could me more peaceful than the people in Ungava or the Lower North Shore or the Pontiac VOTING, in a ballot box, to remain part of Canada?

quote:
If there was no difference, then Québec could, even in the event of a losing referendum, take the parts that voted YES and leave.

Sure! Why not. But the nationalist myth-makers would never accept that because it would violate the one-way street rule of democracy in their universe.

quote:

Or hell, just make the francophone vote, or those who can prove that their ancesters have been there for X generation and who speak French, that'd be truly making up a new country on only ethnic and cultural lines. That's not what anybody wants, because that'd be dumb, would create instability and much resentment, and would make society ungovernable.

It would also be nearly impossible to trace on the ground, which is the real reason you couldn't do that.

quote:
That's why sovereignism and decent federalists say whichever way Québec goes, it goes whole, not parts of it bargained like chips in a poker game.

There are decent sovereignists who concede that borders would, in fact, be at issue.

There are also indecent ones who would put borders into play because they think Quebec would "deserve" more than it already has, in Labrador, the Arctic bays and islands, and the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

quote:
Beyond the fact that there's a new country in the end, there is no similarity between the two, none at all.

Yes there is. They are both about people chosing how and by whom they wish to be governed.

The Quebec nationalist myth-makers think that they, and only they, have that right, to the exclusion of all others.

THEY ARE WRONG.

quote:
Even in historical results it's different, every example of partition in history is bathed in blood and created great political instability,

So are the vast majority of secessions; what's your point?

quote:
but examples of sub-national governments acceding to sovereignty are numerous and most led to stable and peaceful countries.

And partitions of sub-national units can also be done quite peacefully: New Brunswick and PEI (from NS), Maine (from Mass.), Kentucky from Virginia, Tennessee from North Carolina, Vermont from competing NY and NH claims, etc.


From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 12 December 2005 02:00 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Quote: What could me more peaceful than the people in Ungava or the Lower North Shore or the Pontiac VOTING, in a ballot box, to remain part of Canada?
-
I'm in my eleventh year of living on the Lower North Shore, and I think we will stay in an independent Quebec, although I'm wondering if we have the option of choosing the join the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, instead. Pebbles?

From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
No Yards
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posted 12 December 2005 02:35 PM      Profile for No Yards   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think practically speaking if there ever were a separate Quebec, it would not come about on a single referendum. I imagine there would be one referendum with the yes side winning with a little over 50%, and then some serious debate, another referendum or two, with the negotiations evolving to the point where more and more quebecers and Canadians feel comfortable with the arrangements.

I don't see a case where Quebec wins a 50+1 referendum on a "soft" question, and then Quebec, using that win as an excuse, goes directly to putting up border crossing guards.

I also have a lot of faith in the ability of Quebec and the RoC to negotiate very reasonably if the need ever arouse ... I suspect that Canadians, Quebecers, even the rest of the world would see very little difference in a "united" Canada and a Canada-Quebec association.


From: Defending traditional marriage since June 28, 2005 | Registered: Jun 2003  |  IP: Logged
simonvallee
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posted 12 December 2005 04:47 PM      Profile for simonvallee   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Changing the properties of a border means changing a border.

It doesn't mean that at all.








quote:
and for the record, quebec may be a nation, but it is not a state. not even the pq or the bloc see it that way.

Yes, the PQ and the Bloc and even the PLQ sees Québec as a State, not a country mind you, but a State, meaning the whole government institution and jurisdiction.







quote:
face it mr. pur laine quebec de souche,

Using my cultural origins as an insult... that's what we'd call a racist.

quote:
you do not speak for quebec and for the last 140 years quebecers on a whole have sided with my opinion, not yours. thats why you always lose the referendum. and if a poll is like an election, than fine, hold a referendum to join up again with canada in five years should the referendum actually produce a yes vote, which will never happen anyways, because most quebecers disagree with you.

I live in Québec, I know what's happening and what people think much better than you. If the majority of Québec has voted against sovereignty, know that this isn't the case anymore according to all the polls that have been taken for about a year, and nationalism is the majority opinion in Québec, whether you like it or not. All polls show that the Québécois identity is stronger than the Canadian identity in Québec. Therefore, I will use the "we" as I please, if you don't like the fact, well, sucks to be you.

quote:
and for the record, quebec, as with any province, belongs to every canadian, not just the ones living in the province. a udi is not a right.

Québec belongs to Québécois. It doesn't belong any more to Ontarians than Alberta belongs to me, which is not at all.








quote:
Please cite the section or sections of the Clarity Act which would do this.

I don't need to cite anything, we all know what the Clarity Act's all about. It is a law that says that the federal government will only accept to recognize a vote on sovereignty if it considers that there is a "clear majority" to a "clear question". To refuse to recognize a winning referendum based on the Clarity Act is to try to deny the popular will of Québec in the event of a winning referendum.

quote:
Hell, I would too! But it has to be a WINNING referendum, not a "MAYBE" one.

There can be no "maybe" referendum, there are only losing (majority opposed) or winning (majority in favor) referenda.

quote:
If Quebec overall choses to secede, but parts of Quebec chose to counter-secede, then democracy is respected. Isn't it?

No it's not democracy. It'd be like Canada imposing a new tariff on capital gains and Bay Street voting to secede to be able to avoid abiding by that decision. As I said, if Québec had provinces, maybe we could talk about the separation of some of them, it doesn't so we can't without opening the pandora's box that would destroy any hope of stability of our democratic societies.

quote:
Which of Quebec's borders, other than the four which follow rivers, are NOT "arbitrarily invented"?

Those borders have become ingrained in social dynamics, people recognize them, know them and give them legitimacy. Social interactions depend upon them, societies have defined themselves based on those borders. They have become natural by social evolution. The new borders that would be invented would have none of these, they would force societies to enter the difficult process of redefining themselves as new social units, and some of those borders wouldn't even be viable (for example, the idiots who want Western Montréal to secede, the city of Montréal would control everything that'd happen in Western Montréal, for instance, there's just one water system).

quote:
Quebec nationalist myth-makers do this all the time, proposing new borders for Quebec -- which would expand the territory of Quebec -- without any regard for "historical legitimacy".

The myth is not Québec nationalism, it is of a united Canada, even Trudeau once called Canada a land that made no geographical, cultural or political sense, or something to that regards. And no one talks about expanding borders, that'd be too volatile an issue and we all know it. That's why intelligent participants in the debate are level-headed enough to steer clear of the possibility of partitionning anything.

quote:
Why couldn't or shouldn't borders be based on how people in Quebec actually vote? If areas of Quebec which are contiguous to other parts of Canada vote to remain in Canada, why shouldn't that will be respected? Why is democracy, in the Quebec nationalist mythical universe, a one-way street? Why the two-tier "respect for the will of the people"?

Only in a fool's head is there any similarity between Québec and Westmount. Democracy is not about forming new societies and governments whenever you disagree with the government of the present society you're in, democracy is not an individual possibility but a collective thing, and it cannot exist if there is not stability in the collectivities. This being said, Québec is already a distinct society with its own borders and governments, if people want to give full autonomy to that government, then they can. But going around inventing new governments, new borders based on nothing is stupid and denies democracy. If democracy cannot be the total rule of the majority without any rights to the minority, it cannot either be the total independence of individuals from the societies they live in.

BTW, if you support partition for Québec, I expect you to support partition for Canada, meaning even in a losing referendum, the parts that voted in favor should be able to separate. So if there was a referendum with the 1995's results, all ridings that voted YES should be able to secede. Otherwise your position is incoherent and is made even more ridiculous by that fact.

quote:
The Quebec nationalist myth-makers think that they, and only they, have that right, to the exclusion of all others.

You lie, again. Québécois nationalists believe everyone has the right to decide, but in a same society, they share the same right. The right to self-determination is NOT an individual right, it is a collective right, and all those who share it can participate in the decision, but in the end they all have to respect that decision.







BTW, all of you, a last request, for from this point on I shall ignore this thread in the face of such stubborn hatred towards me and mine. Do speak up in an eventual future referendum, the amount of disrespect and hatred towards Québécois will assuredly make sure it will be victorious.


From: Boucherville, Québec | Registered: Mar 2004  |  IP: Logged
Cueball
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posted 12 December 2005 05:01 PM      Profile for Cueball   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
This is a good point:

quote:
BTW, if you support partition for Québec, I expect you to support partition for Canada, meaning even in a losing referendum, the parts that voted in favor should be able to separate. So if there was a referendum with the 1995's results, all ridings that voted YES should be able to secede. Otherwise your position is incoherent and is made even more ridiculous by that fact.


But with respect, I don't know about this:

quote:
Those borders have become ingrained in social dynamics, people recognize them, know them and give them legitimacy. Social interactions depend upon them, societies have defined themselves based on those borders. They have become natural by social evolution. The new borders that would be invented would have none of these, they would force societies to enter the difficult process of redefining themselves as new social units, and some of those borders wouldn't even be viable (for example, the idiots who want Western Montréal to secede, the city of Montréal would control everything that'd happen in Western Montréal, for instance, there's just one water system).


I've lived in Northern Ontario and I'd say the borders are not so functional, and are highly theoretical. What has substance is culture and language, and the French communities seem to look to Quebec. I imagine the same is the case with Labrador.

I'd say, that if the large Cree areas in Northern Quebec, which share a common culture and language with the Cree in Northern Ontario chose to stay in Canada, I think it would definitely have to be considered, perhaps with some negotiated deal around the power projects.

The first Nations people should be able to choose their poison.

[ 12 December 2005: Message edited by: Cueball ]


From: Out from under the bridge and out for a stroll | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
pebbles
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 6400

posted 12 December 2005 07:07 PM      Profile for pebbles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by simonvallee:

I don't need to cite anything, we all know what the Clarity Act's all about.

You don't know what you're talking about, and you won't defend your statement with facts.

quote:
It is a law that says that the federal government will only accept to recognize a vote on sovereignty if it considers that there is a "clear majority" to a "clear question".

Yes. It binds the government of Canada, not that of Quebec.

quote:
To refuse to recognize a winning referendum based on the Clarity Act is to try to deny the popular will of Québec in the event of a winning referendum.

Au contraire; a WINNING referendum would be recognized. It's the "WTF just happened" referendum that would be a problem.

quote:
There can be no "maybe" referendum, there are only losing (majority opposed) or winning (majority in favor) referenda.

Tell that to the people in Newfoundland who still dispute the results of the 1948 referendum.

quote:
No it's not democracy. It'd be like Canada imposing a new tariff on capital gains and Bay Street voting to secede to be able to avoid abiding by that decision.

It's nothing like that at all.

Bay Street can't be neatly split from Canada.

Ungava can.

quote:
As I said, if Québec had provinces, maybe we could talk about the separation of some of them, it doesn't so we can't without opening the pandora's box that would destroy any hope of stability of our democratic societies.

How would losing a few thousand people on the fringes of the province destabilize Quebec?

quote:
Those borders have become ingrained in social dynamics, people recognize them, know them and give them legitimacy. Social interactions depend upon them, societies have defined themselves based on those borders. They have become natural by social evolution.

If that's true, then would the same not also be true in the future of any new boundaries which are negotiated during secession?

Furthermore, if it is true, does it not nail shut and bury the coffin of any claims Quebec is supposed to have to any territories which are not currently part of Quebec as a province?

quote:
The new borders that would be invented would have none of these, they would force societies to enter the difficult process of redefining themselves as new social units,

How "difficult" would it be to annex the Lower North Shore to Labrador; Shawville to Ontario; create an Ungava Territory? You are demeaning the people who live in those regions.

quote:
The myth is not Québec nationalism,

Never said it was.

I talked about Quebec nationalist myths, not the myth of Quebec nationalism.

Quebec nationalist myth #1: Quebec has a claim to Labrador that it could exercise upon secession.

Quebec nationalist myth #1: Quebec has a claim to arctic waters and islands that it could exercise upon secession.

But never mind, you've just said the current boundaries are sacrosanct, so they can't be changed in Quebec's favour either... right?

quote:
it is of a united Canada, even Trudeau once called Canada a land that made no geographical, cultural or political sense, or something to that regards.

Very few countries make such sense except for a very few culturally homogenous island nations.

Quebec is no more, no less, subject to this flaw than Canada is.

quote:
And no one talks about expanding borders, that'd be too volatile an issue and we all know it.

Go talk to Guy at the SSJB.

Go talk to the nine founding MPs of the Bloc Québécois.

They talk about it.

quote:
Only in a fool's head is there any similarity between Québec and Westmount.

Who said anything about Westmount? You are imagining things.

quote:
Democracy is not about forming new societies and governments whenever you disagree with the government of the present society you're in,

In which case there is no case for Quebec separation.

quote:
democracy is not an individual possibility but a collective thing, and it cannot exist if there is not stability in the collectivities.

If counter-seceding 25 or 30,000 staunchly federalist areas on the margins of Quebec, out of a population of over 7.5 million, would "destabilize" the new country, then Quebec society has much deeper problems that all the sovereignty in the world will not solve.

quote:
But going around inventing new governments, new borders based on nothing is stupid and denies democracy.

Again, other than the river boundaries of Quebec, all the boundaries of Quebec are based on "nothing". If they became accepted through time, why wouldn't new boundaries?

quote:
BTW, if you support partition for Québec, I expect you to support partition for Canada, meaning even in a losing referendum, the parts that voted in favor should be able to separate.

If those parts are willing to secede with new boundaries, why not?

quote:
You lie, again. Québécois nationalists believe everyone has the right to decide,

Unless their decision starts and ends with "N".


quote:
but in a same society, they share the same right. The right to self-determination is NOT an individual right, it is a collective right,

And it would be collectively exercised by those geographical and cultural collectivities, which are geographically contiguous to other parts of Canada, where the Quebec secession option was clearly and unambiguously repudiated in a democractic exercise.

quote:
and all those who share it can participate in the decision, but in the end they all have to respect that decision.

Why doesn't Quebec have to respect the decision of Arctic Quebec to remain part of Canada?

quote:

BTW, all of you, a last request, for from this point on I shall ignore this thread in the face of such stubborn hatred towards me and mine.

I don't hate anyone. Well, ok, maybe one person, but he's not present here.

And how do you know who on this board is or is not also a member of the class "me and mine"?

quote:
Do speak up in an eventual future referendum, the amount of disrespect and hatred towards Québécois will assuredly make sure it will be victorious.

Challenging the sovereignist orthodoxy does not equal disrespect and hatred towards Québécois.

Remind me again, who were the Prime Minister and the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs who authored the Clarity Act? What was their cultural background, and which province did they represent in the House of Commons?


From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 13 December 2005 04:52 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I live on the Lower North Shore of Quebec, just below Labrador, and across the Gulf from Newfoundland. A lot of descendents from Newfoundland here, in addition to French Canadians and Aboriginals. In the case of Quebec separating from Canada, if we decided we'd like to do so, could we attach ourselves to Newfoundland and Labrador instead of remaining with Quebec? Just a rhetorical question as I don't detect any groundswell of interest in actually doing this. I don't think this idea would be of interest outside the English-speaking communities here. I like Quebec, but I also like my Canadian passport.

[ 13 December 2005: Message edited by: Boom Boom ]


From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged
tallyho
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posted 13 December 2005 05:04 PM      Profile for tallyho        Edit/Delete Post
I don't know why either a sovereign Quebec or Canada wouldn't want a free movement of people across the borders. I'm inclined to think that 5 years after Quebec independence we'd be hard pressed to notice much difference except at the macro political level.
From: The NDP sells out Alberta workers | Registered: Nov 2005  |  IP: Logged
cco
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posted 13 December 2005 05:07 PM      Profile for cco     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by pebbles:

Why doesn't Quebec have to respect the decision of Arctic Quebec to remain part of Canada?

Why didn't Canada have to respect the decision of Saguenay to become independent in 1995?

Oh, that's right. Because the referendum was provincewide, and binding on the province as a whole. That is the nature of referenda. The votes of the West Island kept Québec from becoming independent in 1995. Why should it be any different in the case of a yes win?


From: Montréal | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
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posted 13 December 2005 06:11 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Why didn't Canada have to respect the decision of Saguenay to become independent in 1995?

Oh, that's right. Because the referendum was provincewide, and binding on the province as a whole. That is the nature of referenda. The votes of the West Island kept Québec from becoming independent in 1995. Why should it be any different in the case of a yes win?


I support the idea that if an area of Quebec wishes to separate from Canada in referendum for that particular area of Quebec, it should. ie, questions pertaining to Saguenay's status in Canada should result, on a yes vote, for an independent state of Saguenay.

From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
pebbles
rabble-rouser
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posted 13 December 2005 06:16 PM      Profile for pebbles     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Originally posted by Boom Boom:
Just a rhetorical question as I don't detect any groundswell of interest in actually doing this.[ 13 December 2005: Message edited by: Boom Boom ]


There was during the last referendum. Probably the one before, too.


From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Boom Boom
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posted 13 December 2005 08:26 PM      Profile for Boom Boom     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Originally posted by pebbles:
There was during the last referendum. Probably the one before, too.
-
Thanks, I didn't know. I wonder how such an idea would work? Just change our Quebec health cards and driver's licenses to those of Newfoundland and Labrador? I wonder if it would affect the extension of Route 138; apparently the Natashquan - Kegaska extension is in the works beginning next year, according to one person here. No official word, yet.

From: Make the rich pay! | Registered: Dec 2004  |  IP: Logged

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