10 October 2006

Tout le monde en parle

When I was home for Thanksgiving this weekend, I sat down with my family after the turkey was tucked away to watch the Société Radio-Canada show Tout le monde en parle. For all you têtes-carrées out there, this is a hugely popular frenchie talk show sort of akin to Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher with lots of guests talking about different stuff. Now admittedly I don’t watch it often as it cuts into The Amazing Race, but things are always lively —for example CBC chairman Charles Fournier revealing that he likes pooing more than sex, or head of the Raelian church storming off after the host pulled his hair and made fun of his clothes.

This episode was interesting in that Michael Ignatieff was one of the guests. He spoke impeccable French, and if I were a Liberal, I would probably vote for him (being an intellectual Trudeauesque man of ideas and vision, both of which are in short order with this country’s politicians). He spoke in favour of equal marriage, gun control, etc., however, when the host asked him about Bill 101 –Québec’s French language laws– his answer really creeped me out.

He said he thought that Bill 101 was good because it promoted the status of French while protecting the rights of minority language speakers. I don’t know if saying this was pandering to Québec voters, but Bill 101 clearly violates the rights of minority language speakers in Québec. A Canadian Supreme Court judgment ruled that forcing businesses to have monolingual signs or making parents enroll their children in French-language schools impinged on rights guaranteed under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. A United Nations tribunal agreed also that Bill 101 constituted a violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Nevertheless, lovely premier Robert Bourassa used the notwithstanding clause to override these rulings and continue to “protect” French rights by taking away rights from others. I’m a bit disturbed by a potential prime minister thinking this is acceptable.

Was this misinformation on his part, or just vote-grabbing —or an accurate and real reflection of his views?

(As always, French media stories go unreported in English mainstream media. Find some info about MI on TLMEP here, and some more here)


Jennifer said...

I just don't know what to think about the Liberal leadership. I don't really like any of them.
Maybe Micheal is pandering, makes sense English Canada won't hear about that stuff, or maybe his understanding of the issue is not so deep, maybe both.
What the heck is Bob Rae doing? Didn't he already have his kick at the can?
The worst one of all is Joe Volpe, maybe I've been following this one more than other people because he's from my home riding but what a shady bastard. This is what I had to put up with for the last I don't know how many years. With that guy and Mel Lastman, it's a wonder I haven't lost all faith in our electoral system.

Anonymous said...

just a question...
didn't Joe Volpe sing "Shaddap You Face"?? i always wondered what happened to that guy....;)

Jennifer said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jennifer said...

Sorry about the previous post, I tried to put up a link but it didn't work.

Apparently, the French Canadians aren't the only ones with fun political shows. I just posted an article from the Star about an Italian show where they secretly drug tested politicians after new, more restrictive, drug laws were passed.

Tokyo Tintin said...

i haven’t been following the liberal leadership race very closely, but from what i understand the two real contenders are rae and ignatieff.

now ignatieff may not be perfect (no one is), but the liberals would be stupid to choose rae. the fact that he is even in the running is kind of mind-boggling to me; he is an absolutely un-winnable candidate. no one in ontario will vote for him, and if you can’t win in ontario, you can’t win the election. if the liberals don’t win the election, then that means we have another unbearable harper government.

now that’s a really scary prospect.

Anonymous said...

that bit about charles forunier is just hilarious. apparently he was let go by the cbc after this (or "resigned"), having become a major laughingstock.

Ian Mackenzie said...

Because of the way the Liberal leadership convention works, this is still anyone's race. Check out this excerpt from the Liberal Party leadership convention rule book:

"Leadership Selection Rules

"On voting day, delegates, if voting on the first ballot, must vote for the candidate they supported at the DEM (Delegate Election Meeting ), unless they were elected as an independent delegate. Ex-officio delegates may vote for any candidate they wish.

"If no candidate wins a majority of the votes on the first ballot, the candidate who finished last will be dropped from the ballot and another vote will be taken. Delegates may then vote for whomever they wish. This process of successive balloting will continue until one candidate receives a majority of the votes."

What we've learned for the polls so far is that Ignatieff would have the most votes (slimly) on the first round, but not enough to win a majority. And while he's a favourite first-choice selection, he's not many people's second (or even third) choice. So he'll actually lose ground the deeper they get into this successive balloting process (and the lowest vote-getters are eliminated).

So, for example, if I'm voting for Scott Brison and he gets eliminated in the first round, the polls tell us that Ignatieff is probably not my second choice, thus other candidates begin to gain ground.

Could be Stéphane Dion . . .