It has been a busy weak with the SNC-Lavalin scandal and other issues. With now two cabinet resignations and one MP saying Trudeau yelled at her and will not run again, it would probably be an understatement to say this has been a bad week for the Liberals. Still a lot can happen in the next 225 days so while the Liberal road to 170 seats has gotten more difficult, it still hasn’t totally closed yet. Nonetheless as per earlier blog, Trudeau needs to find a way to change tactics fast if he wants to stench the bleeding. He promised to be a leader championing women, minority, and aboriginal rights and what has gone on in the past week really plays into the idea he is a phony who is all about symbols not action.
That being said Andrew Scheer had has own dumb move. At a Kitchener town hall, a man there asked him a question on the debunked conspiracy theory called Pizzagate. I will admit despite being a close follower of politics, I didn’t realize it was Pizzagate myself as I generally don’t pay attention to all the wacky conspiracy theories out there although considering how many believe them maybe I should. But unlike Scheer I have enough common sense to know anyone talking about the Clinton Foundation being involved in some child sex scandal is pure fake news and totally false. As such I think Scheer’s response was not the best. He didn’t have to scold the member, but much like John McCain did back in 2008 when a woman stated Obama was not fit to be president because he was Muslim, McCain answered he was a good man and he just disagreed with his views. Scheer should have done something along this lines. Had it been me, I would have said “Clinton Foundation has done a lot of good things abroad so I reject your statements on them. As conservatives we believe in ensuring government spends taxpayer’s money wisely so as with any program we will review whether it is getting the best value of money or not”. This does two things, shows one rejects the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, but also reaffirms fiscal conservatism that conservatives support the concept of the Clinton Foundation, but like all funding, want to ensure taxpayer money is spent prudently.
Recently things have heated up between the gun lobby and a group called Doctors for Protection from Guns. Regardless of whether one agrees with the doctors or not, I fully support their ability to promote their ideals. The gun lobby’s bullying of them and trying to silence them is completely uncalled for and if anything just shows who the gun lobby really is. Doctors may know less about gun laws and how guns operate than gun owners, but they know more about the damage it can cause to someone when used improperly so in order to get good policy it is absolutely essential they be a voice at the table. Usually when crafting legislation you try to include as many voices as possible so it isn’t too heavily slanted in one direction. If on minimum wage we only had business owners, we would probably have a $5/hour minimum wage and much higher poverty rates while if only labour we would probably have a $25/hour minimum wage and mass unemployment amongst low skilled. Thankfully we listen to both and that is why we generally do a reasonable job of finding the right balance. CCFR is not a mainstream group and has very extreme views such as believing with proper licencing individuals should be allowed to own fully automatics and supports concealed carry. Whether one agrees with a handgun ban or not, it is a legitimate debate with strong arguments on both sides and trying to shut up those who disagree with you or insult them just shows a weakness in one’s argument. While I despise the gun lobby, as a word of advice, you might want to show a willingness to listen and compromise if you want to be taken seriously. If you don’t want a handgun ban an argument such as UK and Ireland have them, but rest of Western Europe doesn’t and murder rates are roughly the same so allowing handgun ownership under very strict rules works as well as a complete ban. Don’t totally agree with that argument, but at least that is a more convincing one then simply saying law abiding gun owners are not the problem and making wild accusations such policy would lead to gun fights during confiscation. Clearly those who would resist confiscation are exactly the types who shouldn’t be allowed to own guns. Owning a gun is a privilege not a right in Canada and believe it or not property rights are not absolute nor are freedoms and the will of society and common good matter too. Likewise most law abiding gun owners are no threat, but murders using legally purchased guns in Canada (be they stolen or the gun owner) are not zero. I understand no one likes giving up property or their hobby and certainly that must be taken into consideration, but so should loss of people’s lives and the two need to be balanced.