Transcript of Green debate - May requesting candidates step aside 
During the Green Party Leadership debate at the 1:19 mark…

David Chernushenko:
I do however have to ask a question of Elizabeth and she’ll be able to rebut when it comes. I’d like you to explain why you felt it necessary to call me and Jim Harris during the last election and ask us to consider asking Green Party candidates to stand aside in ridings where our running…

Elizabeth May interrupts:
That’s not what I did David.

…might have a chance to…

EM interrupts:

You’ll have a chance to rebut. Please continue and we’ll give Elizabeth a chance to rebut.

I’ve finished my question.

Moderator and Jim Fannon finish round before rebuttal.

No, I don’t like my actions being mischaracterized in a public debate and I apologize for interrupting David but I was a bit taken aback. What I felt at the end of the last election, and we were about a week from the vote, and I did talk to Jim Harris about it and I did call David as deputy leader because I felt the Green Party could take centre stage at that moment - we’d been denied the stage all through the election - to talk about putting principle ahead of power; to talk about what could happen if Harper was elected to all the platforms we cared about. Beyond that I didn’t have a very well formed idea at all. I was calling them in desperation to say ‘What could we do?’ Could you for instance interest the Liberals if they were interested in talking about proportional representation? Was there room for a coalition there? We had about a week. I admit I was desperate. I had no actual plan but I certainly didn’t call to suggest that people should stand aside for no reason. It was a question of what we could do to ensure the Green Party was front and center.

I do raise this here and I feel I have to because the same question was asked in the Montreal debate and I believe what was being asked of me and of Jim was – you posed the question; would I consider – would it make sense to ask Green Party candidates to step aside in riding where by doing so we would help to prevent a Stephen Harper government from being elected and I equally am very concerned about a Harper government but my response was no, I couldn’t do that. I did not believe that was a principled thing for the Green Party to do because in fact I could never – we are running on principle – not running to try to keep one government out. We’re running on trying to bring Green in and I as a candidate and one who has been a candidate several times could never ask another candidate; could never ask another riding association to have their candidate step down.

EM interrupts:
This is an odd situation.

Moderator and Jim Fannon finish round of rebuttals.

Was your position clearly understood Elizabeth.

No, I don’t think so. There’s elements of it of course. What David and I had a conversation; Jim and I had a conversation. At the time I wasn’t acting as anything other than the Executive Director of a national environmental organization watching what appeared to be, and which has proven to be true; 20 years of work about to go down the drain. I didn’t have an actual proposal. I said ‘What could you do? What could make a difference? Could you approach other parties?’ I had many more conversations with Jim in fairness than I had with David – certainly didn’t ask you to step down – I thought you were going to win in Ottawa-Centre. So, what we’ve got to do is, is… I’m glad to get it out in the open because there’s been rumours about this and they’re not really very helpful. It wasn’t a clear idea that I was putting forward. It wasn’t actually a proposition. It was a what could you do now if you stepped forward. Could you make a difference and that is something that I would not do as Green Party leader it was in my role as an NGO and it wasn’t quite as represented before so I appreciate the chance to clear it up.

Can we expect that Green logo to go somewhere between Orange and Red soon then?

Green leader 
I agree with Staples that picking May as the new leader of the Greens may be a big mistake.

She created the 'Think Twice' coalition (once would be a good start for most of those involved) during the last election campaign to stop Harper from winning and according to Chernushenko (the deputy leader of the party at the time) she called him and Jim Harris to convince them to ask Green candidates to withdraw in order to help Liberal or NDP candidates win.

Six months later she's the party leader?


I noticed yesterday that the Globe and Mail's online update on Judge Marshall's ruling didn't allow comments.

Today's update on the situation doesn't allow comments either. It's the only story without comments that I see from a glace at the others on the front page.

The day before saw 43 comments before further comments were closed.

It's ironic that Editor-in-Chief Greenspon wrote during an online chat less than a week ago:
D N from Whitby writes: Hello, Mr. Greenspon. I was wondering how the addition of comments to the website is going from the Globe's perspective. The fact that the comments are edited makes them somewhat more civilised than the typical blog, but I find that overall, the effect of all this online punditry seems to lower the public discourse into the equivalent of a bunch of people in a room shouting at each other. A few people comment, then people disagree, then everyone criticises everyone else and the whole thing seems to degenerate into name calling and attacks. How does online reader feedback fit into the Globe's future? And do you care to comment on the overall effect of the internet on public discourse and the role of the G&M therein?
Edward Greenspon: I guess this set of questions will get us off to a fast start! We see the Internet as a far more horizontal (or level) medium than newspapers or broadcasting. One of its great strengths is the immediate interactivity you can enjoy with your readers and they with one another. We've invited our readers to "join the conversation" and I don't think society can ever be worse for having more discourse. We don't edit comments per se. We either post them as they are, or we decide not to post if an individual comment is judged by our editors to be racist or defamatory or resorts to foul language or personal attacks. I don't think about it as "a bunch of
people in a room shouting at each other, as you state, but rather as a salon or
restaurant, where we serve up the food (the news), but we don't determine what
people discuss at their tables. The good thing about our salon, we hope, is that it attracts a more intelligent clientele than the other places on the street. I think this ongoing conversation is an important part of our future, but the most important thing about dining at Chez Globe is the quality of the food and service.
It's not surprising that Caledonia Wake Up Call is getting so popular - the people still need to eat and if the Globe is now saying that you can't talk about this topic in their restaurant then they'll go somewhere else.

Reading Hansard so you don't have to 
An interesting question from our Independent MP from Quebec:
Mr. André Arthur (Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier, Ind.): Mr. Speaker, during his inquiry, Justice John Gomery learned that federal judge positions in Quebec had been granted, in fact sold, in exchange for contributions to the Liberal Party of Canada, but he refused to investigate. Every citizen who will one day appear
before these judges should be worried about this.
Quebec's chief justice is the former president of the Liberal Party of Canada; a credible investigation will not come from the current judicial authorities and the government has a duty to reassure us about the integrity of those who are able to decide on the liberty of other citizens.
Does the government intend to investigate—
Hon. Vic Toews (Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, CPC):
Mr. Speaker, I want to thank the hon. member for his question and for his work and his concern on this file.
Judicial advisory committees do operate at arm's length from the Minister of Justice in every province to vet candidates for judicial office. The committees include a variety of individuals from the legal and lay communities.
The government believes there is always room for improvement in the appointment process, as we did with the appointment of Justice Rothstein to the Supreme Court of Canada. The government remains open to examining ways in which the process can be improved.

ATC translation: No.

Hansard II 
This material is gold!

Mrs. Susan Kadis (Thornhill, Lib.) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-273, An Act to amend the Hazardous Products Act (products made with dog or cat fur).
She said: Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to rise to introduce this private member's bill. This bill calls on the government to amend the Hazardous Products Act by adding all products made in whole or in part of dog or cat fur. While banned in countries around the globe, including the United States, dog and cat fur can be imported, exported and legally sold in Canada without any identifying labels. This practice is unacceptable to Canadians.
I think Paul Martin or Scott Reid should pull Susan aside and explain to her that the United States is our neighbour, not our country.
We are Canadians and importing, exporting, and selling dog and cat fur products without any identifying labels is part of who we are.

And enquiring minds want to know - why would a dog or cat fur product be hazardous? Furthermore, can you legally sell dog and cat meat here?

UPDATE: More proposed changes to the Hazardous Products Act - Bill C-230 put forth by that nutty Alexa - ban long display hooks!

Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-230, An Act to amend the Hazardous Products Act (prohibited product — hooks).
She said: Mr. Speaker, this private member's bill amends the Hazardous Products Act specifically to prohibit the advertising, sale and import of elongated display hooks that can pose a threat to the safety and health of persons. They are a particular threat to young children. This is a bill that I think of as Katie's bill, because of a two-year-old child in my own riding, but she is one of many in this country who have suffered either a total loss of vision or severe brain damage because of these unnecessarily dangerous hooks that we simply should not permit to be in existence.
Here is an old story from CBC Marketplace about these hooks.

I was enjoying flipping through Hansard today and found a few things that more people should know about.

First, did you know that the Judy and the NDP are proposing a National Breast Implant Registry?
Ms. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (Winnipeg North, NDP) moved for leave to introduce Bill C-312, An Act to establish and maintain a national Breast Implant Registry.
She said: Mr. Speaker, I am very pleased to have an opportunity to reintroduce this bill, which I have tried in the past on numerous occasions to get before the House or to suggest to the government that it might want to take it and run with it.
Here I am again trying to convince all members of Parliament to support an initiative that would establish and maintain a national breast implant registry.

I guess this is a bit of a cause for Judy.

Next I found a couple of petitions introduced by NDP members. Alexa with one:
Ms. Alexa McDonough (Halifax, NDP): Mr. Speaker, I would like to introduce three petitions today.
The first calls upon the Government of Canada to establish peace tax legislation to recognize the right of conscientious objectors to not pay for the military, but to apply instead that portion of their taxes that would have been used for military purposes toward peaceful non-military purposes within the powers of Parliament.
There are some 40 pages of signatures, and I hope the Government of Canada will give it consideration.

Right - way to think this one through. 40 pages of signatures? I'm guessing those people write really big.
Lastly, a break in solidarity?
Ms. Dawn Black (New Westminster—Coquitlam, NDP): Mr. Speaker, my second petition calls upon the government to urge the CRTC to decline the application of broadcast public notice from the CRTC proposing 9 TV channels directly controlled by the Chinese government, the Communist Party, and not allow them to be broadcast here in Canada.

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