Saturday, September 26, 2009

The little liberal who cried NATIONAL UNITY CRISIS!

Why is it that every time I turn on the news, I seem to see Michael Ignatieff declaring every thing a national unity crisis? Notwithstanding the fact that someone who spent most of his adult life abroad becoming an expert on "national unity", I see this alarm sounding as inherently dangerous. I forsee one of two things happening, neither of which is very appealing.

1) You create a self fulfilling prophecy whereby people hear the words "national unity crisis" so much that they believe there really is a "national unity crisis" the hysteria over which actually creates a "national unity crisis".

2) It follows the story of the little boy who cried wolf, and people become tone deaf on the words "national unity crisis" such that if there actually were to be a "national unity crisis" the country would not respond with appropriate action.

Obviously the Liberals have to resist changing the seat distribution in the Commons because it will harm them. The eastern population (myself including) have been slowly and gradually migrating west for years, where the Tories enjoy higher support. But ultimately the threat of separation should not allow Quebec to extort a larger bounty from the fed than is fairly owed to them. Seats should be based on population. That is completely fair. If the migration of labour from traditionally liberal areas to traditionally conservative areas is not a "canary in the coal mine" indicator for the economic vulnerability of local economies with larger proportions of liberals, I don't know what is. Or by saying that am I creating a national unity crisis?

Redistribute the seats. I'm not so much for adding seats as shifting them. We have enough MPs in Ottawa, we don't need to buy more. We may have too many politicians as it is.


  1. There would be no national unity problem if we just vote that quebec fall in line or get off the island of confederation.

  2. There is a unity crisis but it is within the Liberal party itself.