Remember Progressive Conservative Flora MacDonald? She was an example of a great humanitarian who got schools built in Afghanistan and helped establish that country’s first national park.
She also served as the first female external affairs minister for the Progressive Conservatives and she received the Lester B. Pearson Peace Prize.
I met her at Naramata Centre during a weekend retreat years ago, and we had several long walks together. “Did you notice?” she said, “that the word Progressive has been taken out of the Conservative Party’s name?”
Then she added, “I can’t stand that bunch in power now. They have no compassion.”
That seems to be true in the way they have maltreated our war veterans, and shown little interest in improving the health and education of our native people.
Now we’re embroiled in a small issue over the niqab, a tribal-custom veil, that few immigrant Muslim women wear.
Harper has whipped the issue into a frenzy.
How many women have actually been involved so far?
Two in all of Canada, and once more, these women had to prove their identity without a veil before a citizenship ceremony.
The custom of wearing a veil will die out just as the requirement for females to cover their heads in a Roman Catholic church eventually disappeared.
Let’s stick to important issues in this election.
If you want to see what some of these issues are, look up The Tyee online newspaper and read this article, “Harper, Serial Abuser of Power: The Evidence Compiled.”
Some of the important issues involve huge corruption, muzzling of scientists, not addressing climate change, withdrawal from Kyoto, destruction of world class fisheries’ libraries, gutting environmental protection laws for rivers and lakes, taking money out of health care, not signing the Health Care Accord with provinces, not meeting with provincial premiers, taking funds away from the CBC and currently planning to sell off its buildings.
Is Harper a good money manager? No!
The Conservatives have run eight consecutive years of debts adding up to $150 billion while taking money out of Unemployment Insurance funds to make the debt appear smaller. Huge sums have been spent on Conservative advertising and senate waste.
As David Bond ably pointed out in his financial columns, “taxes go for services.” The mantra of lower taxes for corporations hasn’t worked. Instead, the debt has risen and important services have been cut.
What about the TPP? We’ll have to see about that, but it seems that under the TPP, corporations will extend their control over Canada. They will be able to challenge domestic laws and regulations before an international tribunal.
The Conservative Party needs a new leader. In the past, it had some progressive people and good environmental ministers. The Progressive Conservative Party has been hijacked by people of a different mindset.
Flora MacDonald eventually became an NDPer, but at heart, she claimed that she was still a red Tory.