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When the Bloc Québécois is a Nuisance for Quebeckers’ Interests: The Top 20 Countdown

 The below is a republished version that has been released officially on the Canadian Federal Liberal Party's web site.  Finally get some use out of that old History and Politics degree :)  L'originale en français est disponible ici.The Top 20 of the Bloc Quebecois by Philippe Allard

 

When the Bloc Québécois is a Nuisance for Quebeckers’ Interests: The Top 20 Countdown

 

Translated from the French version by Hugo Shebbeare

 

On the 13th of August 1990, the Bloc Québécois became the first political party in Canadian history to be elected to Federal Parliament in Ottawa that was openly dedicated to the separation of the province of Quebec, by means of the election of a certain Gilles Duceppe, on the chance of a partial election within Laurier-Sainte-Marie district.

 

Ever since this day, the Bloc Québécois has presented itself as a party, as if it was the only party which was capable of representing the interests of Quebec. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. The Bloc does not represent the interests of Quebeckers, and it has proven this on countless occasions since the party’s creation.

 

If the electors have the right to vote for the Bloc, they also have the right to an impartial and just understanding with respect to its intentional expressed positions and political gestures over the course of the past two decades.

 

This is why it is convenient to profit from this most historical event, the 20th anniversary of Gille Duceppe’s election, to demonstrate to what extent the Bloc Québécois has interfered with Quebec’s development within Canada by reminding the whole community of certain key moments where the interests of all Quebeckers were not at all the priority of the Bloc. You will also be saying to yourself that ‘I remember’ (the famous phrase ‘Je me souviens’).

 

Over the next twenty days, from the 25th of July to the 13th of August 2010, I will present my own top 20 countdown of these remarkable moments. For each day, I’ll be adding an event to mark each one of these ‘hits’, or misses rather, that have touched me personally.

 

Give yourself a present for this 20th Anniversary! No matter what your political affiliation is, let me help you dig deep into your memory, and in your personal archives, to reload these moments that clearly indicate how the Bloc Québécois has missed its target, with respect to interests of Quebec as a whole. Please help us commemorate the key events that may have touched you personally by means of adding comments in the area below.

 

20th position – The Bloc Rejects the Progressive Majority Government

On the 11th of October 2008, Gilles Duceppe affirmed, in the middle of his election campaign, that Quebeckers would be better served by a minority government, afraid of a conservative majority government. If he really had at heart the interests of Quebeckers, he would have confirmed loudly that a progressive, human, and responsible Federal government should be elected to the majority. Such a declaration was a demonstration that the Bloc’s Chief would always put the interests of his party over those of the interests of all Quebeckers.

http://www.ledevoir.com/politique/canada/210273/un-gouvernement-minoritaire-servirait-mieux-le-quebec

 

Here, in an interview, he justifies his opinion: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gPfyxE9mtg&NR=1

 

 

19th Position – The Bloc Plays the Identity Card to Obtain Votes

The 15th of October 2007, just before the return to Parliament, the Leader of the Bloc Québécois, states loudly enough to attract media attention, which party intends to play the identity card to counter the conservative vote. Such a confirmation made it crystal clear to which totally irresponsible extent the weight of playing the politics of ethnic division is to this party. In fact, it is a card the Bloc holds dearly, since playing the identity card signifies the division of Quebeckers between those deemed ‘pur laine’, and the ‘others’ (i.e Allo/Anglophone minorities). With respect to the best interests of Quebeckers of all origins, and the mutual respect that comes from such a modern politique, even concerning Quebec’s French-speaking majority, is to be represented by a party that has no interest in dividing its electorate by means of culture, language, or religion.

 

http://www.ledevoir.com/politique/canada/160564/rentree-parlementaire-le-bloc-jouera-la-carte-identitaire

 

18th Position – The Bloc Attempts to Block the Diplomatic Efforts of Canada

The 13th of May 2010, Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe asserts that Canada does not merit a seat on the United Nations Security Council under a Conservative government. This outburst goes against the peace and security interests of Quebeckers and their shared concerns with all fellow Canadians to exercise their influence in the World by means of our country’s pioneering diplomatic efforts. Quebeckers, as do all Canadians, need a government that is capable of having its voice heard at the most important international forums, including the 15-member U.N. Security Council. One can criticise the existing government without blocking significant diplomatic efforts that would raise the profile of Canadian influence in the world.

 

http://www.cyberpresse.ca/actualites/quebec-canada/politique-canadienne/201005/13/01-4280236-duceppe-le-canada-ne-merite-pas-un-siege-au-conseil-de-securite.php

 

17th position – The Fake Victories of the Bloc Québécois

The 14th of April 2010, the Bloc announces on their web site that an imminent victory awaits, this time in favour of the creative arts and artists. Such misconduct should be denounced because the reason behind this victorious rhetoric has no association with a concrete victory that actually modifies the quality of life for the concerned groups. All the while, the Bloc cries victory in their name with ceaseless announcements, for each little parliamentary procedure that moves forward, and for each vote at the first reading of proposed legislature. Duceppe and his team create the illusion in the hearts and minds of citizens, that although stuck in an eternal opposition party position, they can bring some concrete results to the people, when the truth is nothing of the sort. Most of the Bloc’s supposed victories are nothing more than simple parliamentary procedures of trivial consequence to the lives of constituents. How can it be in the interest of Quebeckers to be kept in a ‘we always win’ bubble?

 

Had enough of false Victories? The Bloc thinks you need more, here’s yet another example:

http://www.blocquebecois.org/bloc.aspx?bloc=2fe108b1-6f4f-4599-ae0b-1d966116e39d

 

 

16th Position – The Bloc Attacks Multiculturalism

On the 11th of October 2007, the Leader of the Bloc Québécois turns his back to the interests of Quebec’s ethnic minorities by attacking the politics of multiculturalism, by asking that Quebec be exempt from the rest of Canada’s open-armed approach to different cultures establishing themselves in their new homeland. As he suggests Quebecois values exclude the multi-cultural base (i.e. integrate with the ethnic majority or leave), Mr Duceppe ignores the proven positive effects of the multicultural approach to integration of these minority communities. The Bloc leader refused to take into consideration the interests of ethnic communities in Quebec , and francophones who appreciate multicultural diversity. Insisting that this goes against Quebec values to allow immigrants to maintain their respective cultures on Canadian soil, and using the strawman of survival of Quebec’s French speaking culture, is absolutely contrary to the reality and interests of modern Quebec.

 

http://www.vigile.net/Duceppe-slams-multiculturalism

 

15th Position – The Bloc Québécois Drops the Ball on the Homeless

Despite the explicit demands from Quebec’s organisations fighting for those living on the street and having hard times finding affordable housing, the 5th of May 2010, the Bloc Québécois joins the Progressive Conservatives under Prime Minister Harper to vote against legislation (Bill C-304) aiming to ensure all Canadians access to safe, adequate and affordable housing. According to the Front d’action populaire en réaménagement urbain (FRAPRU), “We estimate that between 150,000 and 300,000 persons become homeless each year in Canada.” The Bloc opposed this proposed legislation change, simply because it was afraid of a National policy. The Bloc did not only block Quebeckers’ access to the aid of their own government, they blocked all attempts made to put in place such a progressive policy that would benefit all Canadians, under the cynical pretext that it was a pan-Canadian solution; which under the psyche of a Bloquiste, forever designates ‘to the detriment of Quebec’ .

Gilles Duceppe, Aug 11th, 24-heures.ca - http://tinyurl.com/2d7pz4l

The Liberal Party of Canada voted for this bill, that the Bloc killed.

See the FRAPRU’s Press Release asking for collaboration with parliament: http://www.frapru.qc.ca/spip.php?article507

 

 

14th Position – Shadow Cabinets, Voilà All That The Bloc Québécois Can Offer Us

The 7th of August, 2004, the day after an election where it has carried the majority of seats in Quebec, the head of the Bloc unveils his Shadow Cabinet - or better yet, dubbed by the Devoir, literally a Ghost Cabinet, or cabinet fantôme. The attribution of posts on the whole for his deputies serves perhaps their careers and the acquisition of parliamentary professional experience, but the women and men of Quebec deserve better than to be represented by such appearances in a mock cabinet that, at the end of the day, can merely act as a powerless detractor, moreover having no effect, factually, on the result of the parliamentary decision making process. Duceppe, the Leader of such a ‘Fantom’ Cabinet, cannot seriously pretend to be defending the interests of Quebeckers with this approach. Are they going to ‘haunt’ us for a long time with these scary and immobile cabinets?

http://government.wikia.com/wiki/Shadow_Cabinet

http://www.ledevoir.com/politique/canada/60870/bloc-quebecois-un-cabinet-fantome-qui-n-oublie-personne



13th &12th Position - Two Missed Opportunities to Serve the Best Interests of Quebec

 

On the 14th of June, 2005, and the 12th of May 2007, elected MP Gilles Duceppe puts an end to the suspense regarding the future of his career in Federal politics, by remaining at the helm of the Bloc Québécois. By opting to stay in Federal politics, at both possible junctures to return to his beloved Quebec, in an arrangement that will never truly exert power (since basking in weakness seems to be Duceppe’s forte, and reminding everyone that he speaks for a majority of Quebeckers, when he no longer does), the Bloc Leader falls short on the concrete leadership indispensable to pursue the welfare of Quebeckers. In becoming a head of a provincial party, his parliamentary and political experience could have been put to greater the benefit of his province, as is moreover the case for his 120 elected bloquiste MPs over the years. From the chronicles of the prolific Chantal Hébert: [this party] "represents an enormous waste of talent, in the measure where the most of the Bloc’s members will never know another life, than that of an opposition deputy, and will never have the chance to put their imposing baggage to the service of a government.” Is this squandering of talent really in the interest of the Quebec population ?

http://www.ledevoir.com/politique/canada/84079/en-attendant-duceppe

http://www.ledevoir.com/culture/livres/133284/le-bloc-quebecois-au-service-du-canada

 

11th Position – The English Speakers of Quebec, the Anglophones: the Minority the Bloc Refuses to Accept Exists

You only have to look briefly at the Bloc’s site to understand the type of society this party proposes: a society where prejudice against Quebec’s English speaking population continues, and that it is acceptable they be treated as second class citizens. Anglophones, along with their fellow Quebeckers, don’t they have an interest to know the Bloc’s position regarding the Economy, the Environment, and Culture? How can the Bloc pretend to defend the interests of Quebec while affirming, that Anglos are a spoilt, over-funded minority, whereas at the same time, they refuse to address them in English through their tools of communication? What Federal political party writes off an entire part of the population that represents between 1 Million English speakers (+ 2 Million Bilingual persons) within their own province of 7.5M, by not even providing a link to English on their website? When Mr Duceppe speaks in English (and even admits his heritage is part Anglophone, the Rowlands), it is not to speak with his provincial Anglophone neighbours, but to sell the idea of separation to the rest of Canada and abroad, even from his Ottawa office! What possible credibility does the Bloc Québécois have, when it demands that our francophone brethren across Canada be respected, when this party’s own segregation-is-the-only-answer position is nothing other than pure hypocrisy? Their idea of a unilingual Quebec is not what our society represents, thus, a vote for the Bloc means swallowing the ‘Anglos do not matter to me’ pill.

 

www.blocquebecois.org

 

10th Position – 1 in 195, the Bloc’s Legislative Batting Average

On November 7th 2003, Bill C-459, the law initiating Holocaust Memorial Day received Royal Assent. The distinguishing feature of this bill is that it is the only enacted law that has come into force from a Bloc Québécois deputy. Si nce the statistics regarding which Bills have actually made it through the Parliamentary process are available online for ten years now, we can clearly see that Bloc’s deputies have introduced 195 bills. Yet, of this admirable number introduced, only a single (1), the Act to establish Holocaust Memorial Day in Canada, has materialised. The irrelevance of this party is clear; results speak for themselves. At the same time, the two parties that have formed a government during the past ten years have introduced 1500 Bills, of which 268 have received Royal Assent. Just the Liberal Party of Canada alone has transformed into legislation 153 bills, a solid contribution to Canadian society, in response to the genuine needs of constituents across all provinces and territories. It should be noted, that an honourable number of these enactments were instigated by Quebec deputies of the Liberal Party of Canada. Therein lays the immense difference between sitting for the eternal opposition, and being part of an effective government that puts the interests of its populace first.

 

To access the statistics from LEGISinfo, regarding our 37th -40th  (current 3rd session) parliaments, please consult:  http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Sites/LOP/LEGISINFO/index.asp?Language=E

 

9th Position – The Bloc Searches for Division, Rather than Sharing or Solidarity

In the bulk of the dossiers in which the Bloc intervenes, their deputies incessantly state that Canadians and Quebeckers are a different people, and that their differences are irreconcilable. With what interest in mind can the people of Quebec have such a divisive fabrication of reality rammed down their throat? Do Canadians across all our provinces and territories not have the right to live in a healthy environment, free from such disruptive harassment with multiple attempts at forced segregation? Do low income families not have the right to equal access to low cost housing or co-operatives? Does not each Canadian have the same interest as their compatriots for a healthy food supply? Are researchers from Quebec not concerned with close Pan-Canadian cooperation, to improve their knowledge and scientific advancements together concurrently, instead of the Bloc’s isolationist approach? We all share the interests and goals coming from the fruits of this collaboration, yet the Leadership of the Bloc seems more preoccupied with the deterioration of the result of our desires for a better tomorrow, before they can even mature.

 

8th Position – The Bloc, Ally of Big Tobacco Instead of Supporting the Tobacco Act

My dearest fellow Quebeckers, when the Bloc insists it is looking after your best interests; please take a moment to question their objectives! In December of 1996, Jean Chrétien’s government, in its first term, decided to attack a major problem affecting the health of Canadians, especially with respect to the younger generation: tobacco use. With the introduction of Bill C-71 (The Tobacco Act), the Minister of Health at the time was looking to reduce the exposure of our youth to Tobacco related advertising, targeting particularly the sponsors of sport and cultural events. For the Bloc, however, this was an unnamable assault against Quebec interests, estimating that forbidding sponsorship and advertising in this way by Big Tobacco would gravely undercut the tourist and cultural industries for the province. Strong from the political support of Bloc deputies and from the opposition they waged against groups lobbying for the promotion of health for all Canadians, Big Tobacco abused its influence by forcing the government to push back the complete enforcement of the new Act over an extraordinary long transition timeframe of five years, even up to the Autumn of 2003. In sum, the economic cataclysm predicted by the Bloc did not happen at all, in fact, it was quite the contrary, and for once Big Tobacco took a hit, instead of Quebeckers. It is important to note that the Bloc was not in a position to comprehend what really was found to be the interests of the people of Quebec, when we understand that Tobacco products take the lives of more persons in the province than do road accidents, suicides, alcoholism, and HIV-AIDS combined.

 

http://www.nsra-adnf.ca/cms/index.cfm?group_id=1272

For more from the Parliamentary debates, please read: http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/hc-ps/pubs/tobac-tabac/pleadings-argumentation/appendix-annexe7a-eng.php

 

 

6th & 7th Position - When the Captain of the Bloc Sells Separation to the Rest of Canada

In January 2005 and April 2010, the head of this misguided party takes it upon himself to tour across all four corners of Canada. A majority of Quebeckers want nothing to do with another referendum and less still with the separation of Quebec; however Gilles Duceppe decides to enrobe himself as the salesman of sovereignty in ‘foreign territory.’ Rather than look forward with other Canadians seeking progress, development and solidarity, or to place a stake in projects/solutions to universal problems that would benefit us all, Mr Duceppe prefers to use these ostentatious tours to explain to his compatriots that Canada would be more prosperous without Quebec. However, Canadians living outside of Quebec know clearly how much this man is mistaken, but their acquiescence and indifference vis à vis separatism leaves those preoccupied with Canadian Unity flabbergasted. A leader who has the interests of Quebec at heart would look for opportunities, above all, to promote expertise of his constituents, to learn equally from his fellow Canadians and collaborate with them to advance the entire multi-nation state’s felicity in which we all benefit. This knowledge and competence transfer between those of the province he is thought to be representing and the rest of Canada is sadly inexistent from ‘la mentalité bloquiste’ (Bloc Québécois mentality), and nothing illustrates better this absence than the two previous cross-Canada trips of this deputy from Laurier-Sainte-Marie.

 

 

5th Position – The Bloc Capitulates to American Interests by Supporting the Softwood Lumber Agreement Pushed Through by Harper’s Minority Government

By supporting the conservatives under Stephen Harper and his Softwood Lumber Agreement on the 27th of April 2006, the Bloc Québécois deprived the Canadian Forest Industry of $1.2 Billion Dollars of the $5.2BN illegally collected by the U.S. Commerce Department; only $4BN was to be returned in the Agreement. This huge compensation was fully entitled to by the Canadian Forest Industry, yet completely ignored by the Bloc. Despite multiple World Trade Organisation and North American Free Trade Association rulings/panels/appeals that had supported Canada, and most importantly, the Quebec Forest Industry Council’s lack of support for such a deal, the Bloc Québécois, worked against Quebec’s interests all over again. A large part of this justly due $1.2BN settlement rebate was given directly to the Canadian Forest Products Industry’s American competitors instead of investing locally to cash-strapped companies that were established, some for over a century even, in numerous Forestry-dependent rural communities across Canada, indirectly contributing to several Quebec Sawmill closures. Thus, this sum went directly to these competitors, who had already benefited from the anti-competitive 27% tariff unilaterally imposed by the United States Government in 2002. These U.S. companies used this sum to improve their infrastructures and productivity. This aggravated the impending financial crisis of 2008 far more that it should have for an already weakened industry, which BC, ON and QC are the key provincial beneficiaries, and incidentally, Canada’s largest export Industry - still larger than Oil exports, and the largest Forest Products producer in the world. A Party that is responsible and truly susceptible to defend the interests of Quebec’s Forest Industry through sustainable development for their livelihood would have not accepted such an agreement, and would have pressed the government for a fair deal instead of undercutting Canada’s International Forestry strength. By succumbing to the pressure exercised by the Conservative minority government and the attraction of a Lumber Rebate that would engage the Forest Industry for years, the Bloc contributed a reduced amount to solve the structural problems of the industry, all the while instilling fear and destabilisation of the major players in the Canadian Industry and the hundreds of thousands of jobs dependant on the Forestry within the provincial economy. These key players within the Quebec economy, weakened already, had already demanded that they not be subject to more concessions of this type in future conflicts – their demands fell on deaf ears in Ottawa, no thanks to the Bloc.

 

http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/softwood_lumber/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_Canada

http://www.allbusiness.com/north-america/canada/879150-1.html

http://www.allbusiness.com/legal/international-trade-law-nontariff/5933226-1.html

 

 

4th Position - The Bloc Québécois Wishes to Make the Feds Disappear from the Quebec Landscape

At every chance and every opportunity, Bloc deputies demand that any sight in Quebec of the Federal government be wiped out, or any Federal involvement in the lives of Quebeckers vanish. A recent example can be found by means of the demands in February 2009, regarding federally owned lands in the region of Quebec City. Presenting the Federal government as if it were a `foreign nation’, the Bloc demands in warrior-like rhetoric that the Plains of Abraham and the lands surrounding it and including the Quebec National Assembly be ceded to the Province. The Plains of Abraham, a Canadian National Historic site, are managed and maintained by National Battlefields Commission since its creation in 1908, with the goal of honouring the memory of soldiers from both sides of the decisive battle in 1759, and preserving the site for future generations. This sad tendency to strive for the disappearance of any Federal presence from the province applies also to Canadian Flags, which the presence, as minimal is it is already in the province of Quebec, would be considered an insult, or worse still, as a declaration of war by the Canadian Federal government according to the Bloc. Having voted against separation, not once, but twice and witnessed their willingness to stay within a United Canada, do Quebeckers not have the right to proudly raise the Canadian Flag? Considering that, the central Maple Leaf design itself originated from Ottawa-based francophone Jacques Saint-Cyr, and that our Canadian National Anthem originated from Quebec, or is this perhaps yet another part of history the sovereigntists have tried to cyclically brainwash the populace to forget, anywhere they wish in Quebec?

http://www.ccbn-nbc.gc.ca/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Canada

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Flag_of_Canada_Day

 

 

3rd Position – Since No Man is a Prophet in his Own Country…

Realising that perhaps (yes, everyone is allowed to dream) Quebeckers have become indifferent to the efforts of this party we know as the Bloc over the past twenty years to promote the succession of Quebec from Canada, the Chief of the Bloc recently decided to orient his ‘movement’, considering the lack of wind in its’ sails locally, to convince the international community of the necessity for a third referendum. On the 9th of June, this very year, he [ab]used his position as the Head of a Federal Party by spamming with Coat of Arms of the House of Commons from his office in Ottawa to deceitfully legitimise the promotion of sovereignty for Quebec to about 1600 international personalities, including Heads of State, Parliamentarians, Journalists, and Trade Union Leaders across the Globe, by explaining to them in a letter which is loaded with separatist revisionist history ink (‘à l'encre souverainiste’). The message this letter forgot to specify, is that a clear majority of Quebeckers have no wish for the succession of Quebec from Canada, and certainly not a third referendum on this question. What interest could Quebeckers have that they be wrongfully represented with this false need for separation, a partisan policy, when addressing the international community? We Quebeckers are a clear and qualified majority that believe our interests are not defended by the Bloc Québécois’ conceited international propaganda.

 

Please join the Facebook Group to denounce this ridiculous international propaganda: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=134525013225749

 

1st & 2nd Position – A Lost Referendum, A Presence that Drags On Without a Raison D’Être

 

To finish the top twenty, two dates that leave their mark. On October 30th, 1995 the second referendum regarding the sovereignty of Quebec. The active participation of over fifty Bloc Québécois Members of Parliament on the referendum campaign, then the official opposition in Ottawa, contributed to leading the country being almost torn apart. This would have had grave economic, legal, and social consequences for Quebeckers, according to an overwhelming majority of experts analysing the impacts of multiple referendums. Considering that the Bloc deputies, then constituting more than two thirds of the province’s deputies, were not able to convince a simple 50% majority of its citizens of the value of their sovereigntist option, witnessing the lag that exists, and exists always, between the population of Quebec on the whole and those voted in to represent the only separatist party in Ottawa. Referendum after referendum, poll after poll, with a few rare exceptions, which correspond only to the ephemeral push of nationalistic fever, a majority of Quebeckers insist that they do not want separation from Canada, yet the Bloc persists since its creation to claim the contrary.

 

Sore losers, on the 31st of October 1995, the day after the referendum, the Bloc deputies deny they have been misguided, refuse to admit defeat by packing their bags to head home. This is quite surprisingly ironic however, to note that one of the engagements of its founder, Lucien Bouchard was that their presence in Ottawa would only be temporary: no question to drag things on, since they were on the verge of victory. However, from this time, the Bloc has neither advanced the succession of Quebec, nor has it make real progress for Quebec within Canada. This is the heart of the drama à propos the Bloc’s presence in Ottawa: its incapacity to exert serious and positive influence on the political choices taken in the name of Quebeckers and Canadians.

 

Ever since this late October day in 1995, the energy that has been wasted, the potential of these competent human resources squandered by means of these 120 duly elected bloquistes to show value for their sovereigntist option prevents Quebeckers from contributing to the advancement of their country...still waiting ad vitam aeternam for the winning conditions of another referendum, or the slow fading away of the Bloc when Quebeckers have come to the realisation as to what point this inutile party has no genuine concern in working for their best interests.

 

 

 

Comments

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 28 October 2010

I was dissappointed to see Liberal Leader Ignatieff use the Bloc's style of argument - point 18.

Regarding point 11, here is a recent article from our local Gazoo:

Consensus on language needs modernizing

THE GAZETTE OCTOBER 28, 2010

The problem with language policy in Quebec today -well, OK, one of the problems -is that it's often more cheap politics than sound policy.

Sovereignist leaders know they can stir up votes by stirring up emotions over language. Accordingly, we hear an endless self-serving drumbeat of nationalist alarmism about French being "in danger," at least in Montreal.

In his thoughtful essay on the facing page Tuesday, our colleague David Johnston pointed out that this "problem" is really a by-product of the success of Bill 101, and of free choice among francophones, and of something that's happening in metropolitan areas around the world.

None of these factors can, or should, be reversed. Let's look at them one by one to see why not:

First, the paradox: Montreal is becoming (slowly and slightly) more English, in a sense, because Bill 101 has made it, well, incontournable to speak French if you work or live here. Anglos who resented or resisted left long ago. Those who remained began demanding more and better French immersion in the schools. And as the established anglophone community became more bilingual, out-migration dwindled.

Add some inflow from elsewhere in Canada (where French in schools has improved) plus some inflow of anglophones from the U.S. and overseas (whose kids go to French school), and you get a growing anglo population -of people who speak more and better French!

Second, free choice: Francophone families

are leaving Montreal Island at a much higher rate than anglophone/allophone families, and so Montreal Island is now just under 50 per cent francophone, although the metropolitan area is still solidly two-to-one francophone.

The reasons for "franco flight" are a topic for another day, but surely language by itself is not paramount, or even high on the list.

Third, a global phenomenon: Globalization has an unofficial "official language" and we all know what it is. Head offices, branch plants, international organizations, research networks, academic institutions, global trade, all demand a workforce that can speak English, plus other languages. As Johnston noted, refusing to be a global metropolis is just stupid.

Fortunately we believe that more and more francophones are coming to see that English is today an opportunity more than a threat. Naturally, francophones want their language and culture to endure and flourish. The challenge is to find the "sweet spot" where Quebec can have the best of both worlds, and to explain that to the public.

Unfortunately this is not a campaign anglophones can carry out. But we believe that increasingly, francophones are sensing the wisdom expressed well by Gaetan Frigon, former boss of the Societe des alcools du Quebec and of Loto-Quebec, in a piece in La Presse last month: Francophones, he wrote, now must "put aside the idea that English is the symbol of British domination, and embrace English, since it has become the only international language." The alternative, he said, would be a "francophone ghetto with no future."

How can Quebec move to a more sophisticated consensus on language? Brent Tyler, in a French-language radio appearance last week, argued that instead of restrictive policies, the government should seek ways to bolster the prestige of French.

That would certainly be more promising than the mean-spirited Bill 115, and far better than what the Parti Quebecois is talking about, with increasing vindictive stridency, such as closing English CEGEPs to most francophones and allophones. And what kind of panic-mongering led the PQ's Pierre Curzi to try to equate Bill 103/115 with the War Measures Act?

By continuing to fight the last war, the sovereignists are turning their backs on the way the world is changing. But they can't keep peddling false fears forever.

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette

Read more: www.montrealgazette.com/.../story.html

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 5 November 2010

More Point 11 - indicating how immigrants who chose their primary language in QC as English, even though they are totally bilingual practically never get hired by the QC Proviincial Govt (Thanks to M. Scott for another great article):

Anglos & the civil service

Despite government promises, anglophones remain a small proportion of civil servants. Why aren't more being hired?

BY MARIAN SCOTT, THE GAZETTE OCTOBER 9, 2010

STORYPHOTOS ( 1 )

Trilingual Elisa Paradiso, a paralegal with 10 years experience in the private sector, took part in three Quebec government job competitions but never even got an interview.

Photograph by: ALLEN MCINNIS, THE GAZETTE, The Gazette

Fluent in three languages, with a CEGEP diploma as a paralegal, Elisa Paradiso thought she would be a strong candidate for a civil service job in her field.

But despite taking part in three Quebec government job competitions, Paradiso has never even had an interview.

"I'm happy to speak three languages. I think it's an advantage for me. But it seems as if for the government it doesn't matter," says the 30-year-old paralegal, who has had a successful career in the private sector since graduating from O'Sullivan College in 2000.

Paradiso can't help wondering whether the fact that she is an anglophone of Italian descent has hindered her chances of landing a civil service job.

Despite long-standing promises by the Quebec government to hire more anglophones and other minorities, anglophones remain a small proportion of civil servants.

Last week, a Statistics Canada report revealed that anglophones hold only 2.8 per cent of Quebec government jobs even though they make up 13.3 per cent of the workforce.

Francophones occupy 97.2 per cent of provincial civil service jobs while they account for 86.5 per cent of the workforce.

Quebec has been promising to rectify the imbalance for years.

Back in 1996, when Premier Lucien Bouchard reached out to the Englishspeaking community in a speech at the Centaur Theatre, he bemoaned the "under-representation of anglophones in the public sector (as) a very real problem" and said the appointment of anglophones to government bodies should become routine.

Last week, Premier Jean Charest told the Bastarache commission, looking into Quebec's system of judicial nominations, that "one of the criteria that was very important for us ... was that we wanted more women, more representatives of cultural communities and of anglophones, and that is reflected in the decisions that we make on nominations."

But critics say the government has done little to make good on such claims.

"They could say they have an employment equity program that includes anglophones. However, that doesn't seem to have been producing any results," said Sylvia Martin-Laforge, director-general of the Quebec Community Groups Network.

Provincial cutbacks are one reason efforts to hire more anglos have stalled, Martin-Laforge acknowledged. For some anglophones, the need for perfect written or spoken French is another obstacle, she added.

But there is no excuse for failing to make the civil service more inclusive, Martin-Laforge charged.

"If they were serious about this they would have a quota. Otherwise, they'll never get there," she said.

The government should have an outreach program to recruit more anglophones and offer language courses to those who wish to upgrade their French skills, as the federal government does, Martin-Laforge suggested.

Harold Tremblay, a communications adviser at the Conseil du tresor, said the reason anglophones are under-represented in the civil service is that few of them submit applications.

"What we notice is that there are very few anglophones who apply. It's not a question of access; on the contrary, there is a will on the part of the government to recruit these people, but it's difficult to twist their arm," he said.

Tremblay said he had no statistics on how many anglophones apply or have been hired to back up his statement.

But he noted that 47 per cent of civil service jobs are in Quebec City. Anglophones account for only 1.4 per cent of the population in the provincial capital.

The government has reached out to anglophones, immigrants and the disabled by publicizing job openings on the Internet, through employment organizations and on college and university campuses but the message does not seem to be getting through, Tremblay added.

History is one reason anglophones have long been under-represented in the Quebec civil service, said Jack Jedwab, executive director of the Association for Canadian Studies.

During the Quiet Revolution of the 1960s, the growth of the public sector provided a means of advancement for French-speaking Quebecers in a province where anglophones occupied many high-level private-sector positions, he said. "The civil service was seen as a lever to improve the position of the French-language population," Jedwab said.

However, the stereotype of anglophones as a privileged minority no longer reflects reality, the Statistics Canada report reveals. It found an anglophone man with identical qualifications to a francophone man earns, on average, $1,900 less than his francophone counterpart, while an anglophone woman earns $700 less.

Yet the perception that anglophones are somehow better suited to the private sector lingers, Jedwab said. "That is a very antiquated view of things," he said.

"Anglophones have no aversion to working in the public sector, nor do francophones have an aversion to working in the public sector."

Jedwab said that while making the civil service more representative of Quebec's diverse population takes time, the government could remedy the under-representation of anglophones and other minorities through appointments to advisory boards and other positions.

At Senate committee hearings in Quebec City, Sherbrooke and Montreal last month, anglophones complained of exclusion and lack of access to jobs and government services.

Members of the Senate Committee on Official Languages noted that devolving powers to the Quebec government has had the perverse effect of depriving English-speaking Quebecers of bilingual services in some regions. For example, provincial employment centres do not always offer services in English, unlike federal employment centres.

The senators also commented on the dearth of anglophones in the Quebec civil service, even within the directorate responsible for English education.

Pierre Fortin, a professor of economics at the Universite du Quebec a Montreal, warned that further study is needed before drawing any conclusions on why anglophones are under-represented. "Are anglophones prepared to accept jobs where they will work mainly in French?" he asked in an email. "Do anglophones take part in civil-service competitions in numbers proportional to their demographic weight?" he added.

While their under-representation in the provincial civil service is most striking, English-speakers also occupy fewer federal and municipal jobs than their numbers warrant, the Statistics Canada report showed.

In the Montreal area, anglophones comprise 22.1 per cent of all workers but make up only 4.9 per cent of provincial government employees, 7.2 per cent of municipal employees and 15.9 per cent of federal employees.

The report also found that while 62 per cent of anglophones feel that the presence of English is very strong in media and 42 per cent feel it is strong in stores, businesses and federal services, only 24 per cent believe that English has a strong presence in Quebec government services.

The Statistics Canada report, based on the 2006 Census, defines anglophones and francophones according to the official language they speak best. By that measure, anglo-Quebecers number 994,723 out of a total population of 7.4 million.

Paradiso said she has gotten over her disappointment at not landing a civil-service job.

"I guess I've been fortunate to be happy in the jobs that I've found in the private sector," she said.

"But everybody says, once you get into the government, you're set for life. That's why everybody does try."

mascot@montrealgazette.com

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Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 25 November 2010

Bravo Josée Vernier for pointing out that the Bloc has invested pratically nothing in Quebec, they have only been there for the past twenty years to fill up their personal pension funds:

www.youtube.com/watch

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 21 December 2010

Regarding the Bloc's anti

www.immigrationwatchcanada.org/.../bienvenu-a-quebec-strict-provincial-regulations-mean-few-immigrants-to-canada-choose-quebec-and-more-are-bidding-adieu

Immigrant Criteria

The Quebec and Canadian governments share jurisdiction with respect to immigration, but the Quebec government sets its own requirements:

–Selection. Quebec selects immigrants who it deems will adapt well to living in the province.

–Language matters. Crucially, the foundation of Quebec's immigration regime is language: Quebec wishes to select immigrants who speak French.

Relative Performance

Over the past decade, approximately 400,000 immigrants have arrived in Quebec. The annual rate has almost doubled during this time and the nature of those immigrating has also changed. Until the 1980s, most immigrants came from Europe, whereas now approximately 40% come from North Africa, particularly Algeria and Morocco.

However, the province's total represents just 18% of all immigrants to Canada (225,000 immigrants arrive in Canada each year). By contrast, Ontario attracts 52% of all immigrants to Canada, with the majority settling in Toronto.

Retention Problems

Canada, like the United States, does not require people to officially report changes of address, so it is difficult to measure precisely how many migrants leave Quebec. But distinguished Quebec demographer Jacques Henrinpin has estimated that the province loses 28% of its immigrants within five years, 40% over 10 years and approximately 50% over 20 years.

Quebec also chronically loses non-immigrant residents to other provinces via internal migration. Since 1966, Quebec has lost approximately 30,000 residents annually to English-speaking provinces and welcomed only 16,000 to 17,000 Canadian migrants.

Quebec's relative attractiveness. Several factors make Quebec less attractive to immigrants than other provinces (particularly Ontario and British Columbia) for immigrants:

–French language schooling. Unless they were educated in English in another province, new immigrants may not send their children to English-speaking state schools. (The relevant law has been struck down by the courts, but the Quebec government has two years to respond.)

–Anti-immigrant rhetoric. Relative to other provinces, political and media commentators are often highly critical of immigrants.

–French returnees. Surprisingly, Quebec also appears to have trouble retaining immigrants from France. According to Quebec's Ministry of Immigration, every year 3,000 to 4,000 French nationals settle permanently in the province, 7,000 enter on temporary visas and over 5,000 arrive as students. However, there is strong evidence that a substantial number of these migrants leave the province within a relatively brief period of time.

Credential Recognition

In the public debate on how to improve Quebec's attractiveness to immigrants, it is often observed that migrants have trouble securing recognition of professional credentials earned overseas. However, this is a chronic problem in all Canadian provinces, so it does not explain relatively low net migration to, or out-migration from, Quebec.

Key Policy Challenges

Quebec is unlikely ever to overtake Ontario or Western Canada as a favored destination for immigrants. Economic payoffs associated with proficiency in English are higher than French.

However, public policy has not systematically sought to compensate for this drawback by improving the attractiveness of the province in other areas, such as easing restrictions on English school enrolment for new immigrants. Most problematic, Quebec is relatively unattractive to business investors–particularly entrepreneurs, the category of migrants that generate the most wealth for the recipient society. Remedial policy responses are apposite in this latter area.

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 21 December 2010

www2.macleans.ca/.../the-pq-the-ndp-and-resistance

The PQ, the NDP and Resistance

By Martin Patriquin - Thursday, December 9, 2010 at 2:58 PM - 23 Comments

The Gazette’s Don Macpherson (or D Mac, as I never call him) has a nice read today about the connections between the Parti Québécois and the Reseau Résistance du Québecois, a proto-separatist group that does things like protest the Queen and Paul McCartney and such.

Anyway, the RRQ recently sent out a series of letter to contributors to the Liberal Party of Quebec—specifically, those who contributed the maximum amount ($3000). The letter is printed à-la-FLQ Manifesto, gun slinging Patriote watermark and all, and contains some threatening language.

I’ll let Don tell the rest:

It informs you that your name and address have been posted on a website identifying you as someone who last year contributed the legal maximum of $3,000 to the Quebec Liberal Party.

It declares you “a target” for anybody who wants the Charest government either to hold a public inquiry into the construction industry and political financing or resign.

It is only when the government has done so that the website will be closed and “you will find peace again.”

Cripes.

Don also talks about how the RRQ always seems to be doing the PQ’s dirty work. “To my knowledge, the only mainstream parties in Canada willing to associate with extremists such as the RRQ are the PQ and its federal ally, the Bloc Québécois.”

I would humbly add another name to that list: the New Democratic Party. Tom Mulcair, the NDP’s lone MP in Quebec, made a lot of noise denouncing Bill 103, the language law that ‘fixes’ Quebec’s law on English schooling. Like the PQ and Bloc, Mulcair claimed the law allowed backdoor access to English school for those who could pay for private school for a few years. And, like the PQ and the Bloc, the NDP was a sponsor of an anti-Bill 103 concert this fall—along with the RRQ. (See bottom right of the poster, below)

Strange bedfellows, eh?

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 12 January 2011

network.nationalpost.com/.../daniel-goldbloom-gilles-duceppe-s-blue-neck-is-showing.aspx

Daniel Goldbloom: Gilles Duceppe's blue neck is showing

Posted: June 26, 2009, 3:00 PM by Daniel Goldbloom

Daniel Goldbloom, Canadian politics

In an uncommon display of humility last week, Gilles Duceppe admitted that if there are rednecks in English Canada, they also exist in Quebec. Of course, they're not exactly the same; in Quebec they're "bluenecks" (les cous bleus) — a not unclever Quebecism that shows idiocy knows no chromatic bounds.

Duceppe was referring to the hardline separatists protesting two anglophone acts on the bill for a free St. Jean Baptiste Day concert in Montreal. Anglophones allowed to perform on Quebec's national day? You could almost hear the true believers intone, "Je me souviens Paul McCartney." Fortunately, the BQ leader deigned to call a spade a bêche and threw his support behind the the anglo musicians, who did, as it turned out, play a few songs in French.

On the whole, the episode was somewhat heartening. The most ardent separatists won't be happy until migratory birds switch to French squawking upon entering Québécois airspace, but major figures like Parti Québécois culture critic Pierre Curzi and Québécois TV star Guy A. Lepage supported the anglo inclusion. The concert itself faced a minor disruption, which merely annoyed the vast majority of spectators.

Unfortunately, the universe can only stay out of balance for so long. The moment Duceppe made a self-deprecating comment about francophones in Quebec, the payback countdown began. And on St. Jean Baptiste day itself, he found satisfaction.

Sure, Quebec may have bluenecks, but English Canada is led by rednecks. Tabarnouche.

Both Stephen Harper and Michael Ignatieff are rednecks, of course, because they failed to support the extension of Quebec Bill 101 French-language law to federally run institutions in Quebec. That's right. These damn rednecks want the Canadian labour code to remain unchanged for Quebec's airports, ports, banks and telecommunications sector! You can almost feel the cheez whiz smeared across your keyboard.

With an awe for political tactics once reserved for Stephen Harper, news reports analyzed Duceppe's language demand thusly: If the feds relent, he claims victory and wins political capital; if the feds refuse, he claims oppression and wins political capital. A win-win for Duceppe? Perhaps. But a loss for both Quebec and Canada.

Further limiting the use of English in Quebec's federally run institutions would accomplish two objectives. Obviously, it would strike a blow for those Quebecers still languishing under ubiquitous and illusory oppression at the hands of les Anglais. But more insidiously, it would help clarify the battle lines between the government of Quebec and the government of Canada. Federal regulations, by definition, must apply to the entire federation; if they no longer apply in large part to Quebec, the province lurches that much further toward statehood.

This is not about defending the French language — the original Bill 101 and the language police have that covered. It is about incrementally removing Quebec from Canada in the absence of majority support for separation.

Let's take the BQ proposal one step further, shall we? If Duceppe were to win this concession (considering Parliament's rejection of his motion earlier this month, it seems unlikely), one assumes his next Bill-101-expansion target would be the Quebec outposts of the federal government itself. French is the language of business in Quebec, so why should people have equal access to English at government offices just because the bureaucrats report back to Ottawa instead of Quebec City?

An attack on federal bilingualism in Quebec — namely the English aspect — would have the same populist blueneck appeal, with an added bonus: If Canadians no longer had easy English-language access to the Canadian government accross the country, how long do you think the feds would insist on French-language access in the rest of Canada? And if Quebecers couldn't access their federal government in their mother toungue beyond their provincial borders, what's the point in belonging to the federation anyway?

Perhaps the more important question here is why Gilles Duceppe is so focused on Bill 101 during the worst economic crisis in his lifetime. A Léger Marketing poll found this week that 87% of francophones believe the French language is threatened in Montreal, up from 79% last year. The Montreal Gazette rightly points out that any alleged decline in the speaking of French is thanks to francophones moving to the city's swelling off-island suburbs — a relatively tiny, unforced migration that leaves the "French-ness" of Metropolitain Montreal unchanged. Say what you will about the Bloc, they know how to exploit national insecurity when they see it. If the economy is in the toilet, they know what to do: Make sure slightly more French is spoken in Quebec's federally run institutions.

If that isn't blueneck politics, I don't know what is.

National Post

dgoldbloom@nationalpost.com

Photo: Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe addresses the crowd in front of the Peace Tower during the National Day of Reconciliation on Parliament Hill last summer.  (Julie Oliver/Ottawa Citizen)

Read more: network.nationalpost.com/.../daniel-goldbloom-gilles-duceppe-s-blue-neck-is-showing.aspx#ixzz1Aq8viSU2

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 15 January 2011

You see, even the Conservatives say much the same thing Philippe has mentioned above. This is a common understanding politically in QC, yet people still vote for the Bloc out of spite(?) perhaps:

lejournaldequebec.canoe.ca/.../20110114-212050.html

Politique Fédérale

ÉLECTIONS FÉDÉRALES

Blackburn met en garde les Québécois

GENEVIÈVE LAJOIE

14/01/2011 21h20

Nouvelle

Commentaires

EnvoyerImprimerTaille A A ACoquilles

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Le ministre fédéral d’État à l’Agriculture, Jean-Pierre Blackburn, était de passage à Québec, hier, pour annoncer l’octroi d’une aide financière de 969 920 $ à l’organisme Agri-Traçabilité Québec, qui s’affaire à développer et opérer un système d’identification permanente et de traçabilité des produits agricoles de la ferme à notre assiette.

© Didier Debusschère

Le ministre conservateur Jean-Pierre Blackburn met en garde les Québécois contre la tentation de voter pour le Bloc québécois aux prochaines élections fédérales, qui pourraient avoir lieu ce printemps si le budget du gouvernement Harper est défait par l’opposition.

« La présence du Bloc à Ottawa depuis tant d’années a nui aux intérêts du Québec », a pesté le ministre fédéral d’État à l’Agriculture, de passage à Québec, hier.

Le Journal a révélé, hier, que le parti de Gilles Duceppe vise rien de moins qu’un balayage dans la région de Québec et ses environs, lorsque les Québécois seront appelés aux urnes.

Selon M. Blackburn, puisque le Bloc ne sera jamais partie prenante des décisions, n’aspirant pas à former le gouvernement, voter pour M. Duceppe et ses troupes n’aide pas le Québec. « Je pense qu’on a beaucoup plus à retirer de notre pays en étant autour de la table qu’en étant toujours en train de critiquer », a-t-il insisté.

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 20 January 2011

Bravo to the following writer who was a little pissed off that Sikhs who were ironically invited to the provincial legislature to discuss the issue of accommodation, but were refused access since they were carrying the Kirpan (which the Supreme Court has ruled as constitutional):

Article from The Toronto Star:www.thestar.com/.../924878--siddiqui-pq-demonizes-minorities-to-advance-separatism

By Haroon Siddiqui

Editorial Page

When a majority feels threatened by minorities, it’s a society lacking self-confidence and wallowing in victimhood. That’s Quebec these days.

It has whipped itself into a frenzy — first, over Orthodox Jews, then Muslims in general and niqab-wearing women in particular, and now, kirpan-carrying Sikhs.

This is ironic and sad.

A Catholic majority that rightly ended the historic domination by the Protestant minority in Quebec, and ensured a reblossoming of the minority French language in a sea of English North America is now demonizing its own minorities.

At the very least, it’s letting politicians exploit collective insecurities by claiming that majority mores are imperiled by minority demands.

What makes it worse is that it’s the Parti Québécois that’s playing this dirty game to resurrect itself and breathe life into its failed separatist project. It has put the government of Jean Charest on the defensive, forcing him to play catch-up.

But it’s really the premier’s own fault, dating back to 2007.

Mario Dumont of Action démocratique was making headway campaigning against immigrants and minorities. Charest ducked and set up a commission on reasonable accommodation. The ploy did not work, as his Liberals were reduced to a minority and Dumont became leader of the opposition.

The commission got an earful from witnesses that their society was being changed for the worse by Jews, Sikhs and especially Muslims. But in its 2008 report, the commission said there was no crisis. Minorities were not making unreasonable demands. And it laid down sensible guidelines for majority-minority relations in a secular, democratic society.

With the crisis diffused, Charest called a snap election in December 2008, and won back his majority, crushing Action démocratique and triggering Dumont’s exit from politics.

Enter the PQ’s Pauline Marois, picking up his banner of identity politics. She railed against Orthodox Jews wanting to open their separate schools on Sundays (to make up for activities interrupted by the Saturday Sabbath). She wanted the niqab banned.

Charest half obliged. He allowed Jewish schools on Sundays but introduced an anti-niqab bill last year. Those not showing their face would be denied all government services, including health care.

Those opposing the draconian bill included the Jewish Orthodox Council of Quebec. On Tuesday, a group of Sikhs went to the National Assembly to do the same. But they were denied entry because they were carrying kirpans, even though there’s no such ban in Parliament or other provincial assemblies. (OnWednesday, the Bloc Québécois jumped on the PQ bandwagon and demanded a ban in Parliament.) There’s also the unanimous 2006 Supreme Court ruling in a Quebec case that schools cannot ban kirpans, only place some limitations for safety.

Such give-and-take already also governs the niqab, with women lifting their veils for purposes of identification, passport and security.

Yet the PQ keeps stoking the fires. It said that a ban on the kirpan be included in the anti-niqab bill. It anchored the demagoguery in its anti-Canadian creed.

“Multiculturalism may be a Canadian value but it’s not a Quebec one,” said Louise Beaudoin, PQ critic for secularism. “We haven’t signed the Constitution of Canada because it contains this notion of multiculturalism.”

This is revisionist nonsense. Quebec was the only province not to sign the 1982 Constitution but not necessarily for that reason. Besides, Quebec is not immune from Canadian law, especially as laid down by the Supreme Court.

Yet, the Charest Liberals demurred. Immigration Minister Kathleen Weil refused to take a stand, talking vaguely about “pluralism” and “openness.”

This is empty rhetoric. Liberals need to stand up for liberal, democratic, secular principles, including freedom of religion and protection from those who attack its expression — as in the vandalism at six Jewish institutions in Montreal over the weekend.

Sending police after the fact is only the reactive stage of a governmental process that begins with engendering respect for diverse peoples rather than mollycoddling the bigots braying at them.

Haroon Siddiqui is the Star's editorial page editor emeritus. His column appears on Thursday and Sunday. hsiddiqui@thestar.ca

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 26 January 2011

Here is another one - this time Duceppe acting like he is interested in QC's interests by blackmailing the Harper Govt for an arena and only $5B cash:

Bloc to Harper: Send $5 billion to Quebec

BY KEVIN DOUGHERTY, POSTMEDIA NEWS JANUARY 26, 2011 7:36 PM COMMENTS (62)

STORYPHOTOS ( 1 )

Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe says that in asking for $5 billion, the party is “acting in the interests of Quebec.”

Photograph by: Chris Wattie, Reuters

QUEBEC — The Bloc Quebecois, with 47 seats in the House of Commons, has announced its price for supporting the Conservative minority government's new budget: The BQ wants $5 billion for Quebec, including $2.2 billion to compensate the province for harmonizing its provincial sales tax with the federal goods and services tax.

With 143 elected members in the 308-seat House of Commons, Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government needs the support of at least one of the three opposition parties to remain in power.

Without that backing, the budget would be defeated, triggering a spring election.

The Liberals hold 77 seats, the New Democratic Party 36. There are two independents and three vacancies.

The Bloc is also seeking $1.5 billion more in equalization payments for Quebec, $800 million more for post-secondary education and social programs, $421 million as the federal government's share for dealing with the 1998 ice storm, and $137 million in income stabilization.

Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe insisted at the end of a two-day party caucus meeting in Quebec City, the region where the Harper government holds eight of its 11 Quebec seats, that in asking for $5 billion, the Bloc is "acting in the interests of Quebec."

He noted the Harper government's budget last year sent $10 billion to Ontario; Duceppe said there appears to be a double standard and the Conservative government does not take Quebec's demands seriously.

Read more: www.montrealgazette.com/.../story.html

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 27 January 2011

Interesting point of view in FR:

politiquesocieteetsoucy.blogspot.com/.../le-projet-du-nouveau-colisee-et-les.html

jeudi 27 janvier 2011

Le projet du nouveau Colisée et les faux sauveurs bloquistes

Cette semaine sortait un sondage qui mettait le Bloc Québécois en avance à 37% versus 29% pour les conservateurs de Stephen Harper dans la région de Québec. Évidemment, la grogne face à un éventuel refus du fédéral de financer un nouvel amphithéâtre fait que les conservateurs sont en réelle baisse de vitesse. Pourtant, la partie n’est pas encore jouée, car avec la stratégie du premier ministre du Canada de demander du financement privé dans le projet, voilà que certains archimillionnaires comme Pierre-Karl Péladeau seraient prêts à investir pour la construction d’un nouveau colisée. Je ne suis peut-être pas comptable, mais plus que le privé investira, moins cela coûtera cher en deniers publics. N’oubliez surtout pas que le nouveau Colisée est particulièrement en vue pour un éventuel retour d’une équipe de la LNH à Québec. Sans oublier que cette industrie en est une de millionnaire et non de salariés minimums. Quoi qu’il en soit, selon mon expérience politique, le projet va finir par aboutir, seulement que le privé investira beaucoup plus que ce qu’il ne voulait auparavant. Quand tu as de l’argent, tu te dois d’investir et de prendre des risques. Ce n’est pas toujours au gouvernement de prendre la totalité du péril.

Celui qui jubile présentement avec ce nouveau sondage est le très constructif chef du Bloc Québécois Gilles Duceppe. Même son pitbull, le député de Montmorency-Charlevoix-Haute-Côte-Nord Michel Guimond, croit que le Bloc pourrait balayer le Québec. Nous assistons encore une fois à la traditionnelle position du Bloqueux qui font tout pour saboter le fédéral, et ça évidemment sans avoir à ne rien offrir en retour. La question que l’on se doit de poser en te telle circonstance est.. Est-ce qu’un gouvernement bloquiste au fédéral investirait dans la construction d’un nouveau colisée à Québec? Naturellement, vous avez sûrement senti mon sarcasme dans ma question n’est-ce pas? C’est clair que non il n’investirait pas, ils ne prendront jamais le pouvoir ces braillards-là! Le Bloc est condamné dans l’éternelle opposition! Je dis aux gens de Québec de garder espoir, l’amphithéâtre se construira, mais le privé doit faire sa part. Nous sommes en crise économique et le Canada est encore en déficit. Donc, calmons-nous, car le Bloc ne vous amènera aucune solution. Duceppe et ses magouilleurs n’ont qu’un seul but en tête, et se but et de faire mal paraître le fédéral pour justifier sa présence, et surtout pour nous ramener dans une autre chicane constitutionnelle, pour éventuellement nous emmener vers un autre référendum inutile sur la souveraineté…. En passant, vous saviez que Gilles Duceppe a joué dans le Retour du Jedi? En voici la preuve!!!!LOL

Publié par José Soucy à l'adresse 14:34   Envoyer par e-mailBlogThis!Partager sur TwitterPartager sur FacebookPartager sur Google Buzz

Libellés : conservateurs, Gilles Duceppe, José Soucy, Nouvel amphitéatre, Sondage

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1 commentaires:

info a dit…

Un gouvernement Bloquiste !!!! Osti qu'elle est bonne.

27 janvier 2011 14:42

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 10 February 2011

-- here's the point of view of a displaced Anglo-Quebecker, now living in Alberta.

Save the separatist rhetoric

EDMONTON JOURNAL FEBRUARY 10, 2011

Re: "Top court orders Alberta to pay costs in Edmonton francophone man's traffic ticket appeal," edmontonjournal.com,

Feb. 4.

Gilles Caron, the Edmonton truck driver who received a traffic ticket and appealed to the Supreme Court because it wasn't written in both French and English, hired Saskatchewan lawyer Rupert Baudais to represent him.

Baudais has asserted that, "Englishspeaking people in Quebec have always had, and still have today, much more rights than what we're going to get, even if we win this case."

Sorry, but I was born and raised in Quebec. I'm used to hearing separatist rhetoric and propaganda, and the old "English Quebecers are the best-treated minority in the world" is a classic bit of nonsense that's right up there with "Who's on First?"

Successive Quebec governments, both separatist and federalist, have been diligently chipping away at individual rights in Quebec for the past 40 years, using language police to do so.

Quebec has indeed become a distinct society because the provincial government has legalized and legitimized ethnocentricity and racism. Protections guaranteed by the Constitution are circumvented in Quebec through the "notwithstanding" clause, and the province's own Charter of Rights is ignored.

It has got to the point where toddlers are taught to be offended by the sight and sound of the English language.

And don't forget the well-earned rebuke of Quebec by the United Nations Human Rights Committee in 1993 for its repression of individual rights -- certainly a distinction not shared with any other Canadian province.

With respect to Baudais, Quebec just isn't the best example he can use of a place where individual rights proliferate or are held in high regard.

And by the way, the best-treated minority in Canada is the French minority of Quebec.

Rob McAlear, Edmonton

© Copyright (c) The Edmonton Journal

Read more: www.edmontonjournal.com/.../story.html

Posted by Hugo Shebbeare on 30 March 2011

Quebecers want in? Don't vote for the Bloc

THE GAZETTE MARCH 30, 2011

MONTREAL - With a federal election in the offing, there's been an outbreak of late here in Quebec of griping by political personalities and commentators that the province's interests and preoccupations are getting precious little attention from the national political parties and the rest-of-Canada population as a whole. But if Quebecers in general feel that way they have only themselves to blame.

There was the prominent complaint of Senator Jean-Claude Rivest, a senior adviser to former premier Robert Bourassa, in a recent speech that got front-page treatment in Le Devoir. He bemoaned the "thoughtlessness" of the major federal parties, which to his mind are showing a total lack of interest in Quebec's realities and deplored that Quebec's concerns have been nearly erased from the national agenda.

He was joined by former Parti Québécois minister François Legault, who polls suggest could be elected premier if he could get a functional party together, and assorted columnists of nationalist inclination whose main complaint is that none of the national parties shows any interest in reviving the constitutional debate that got talked to death two decades ago.

To begin with, Quebec does have problems, but none of them cry out for a constitutional fix. Putting it into the constitution that Quebec is a nation within Canada would do nothing to rectify its real problems. These include a range of dysfunctional provincial institutions, a staggering debt due to reckless spending, a decrepit health-care system, an underperforming school system, a bloated bureaucracy and rampant corruption. All of these should and can be dealt with by the provincial government under its present jurisdictions.

Nor should Quebecers be surprised that federal parties aren't straining themselves to dangle fat carrots before them this election campaign. For nearly two decades now and despite the best efforts of the national parties to connect with them, Quebecers, election in and election out, have delivered most of their federal seats to the Bloc Québécois, whose abiding interest is to advance the disintegration of Canada.

The Conservatives tried mightily in their first term to win over the Quebec vote. They got parliamentary recognition of Québécois nationhood, they put paid to the alleged fiscal imbalance, they gave Quebec a seat on the Canadian UNESCO delegation and Stephen Harper pointedly spoke French first at every formal public appearance, even abroad. And yet, when the Tories made a relatively piddling cut to arts funding before the last election, Quebec threw a collective hissy fit and gave the Bloc even more seats than before.

The lesson for Quebecers here is that if they don't participate in national affairs through the national parties, their concerns will predictably get short shrift. Bite the hand that reaches out to you too often and the hand will inevitably be withdrawn.

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