I am planning on starting a bit of a series here, evaluating the Harper government on its famous five priorities and throwing in an extra two priorities - the environment and foreign affairs - seeing as they have come to have at least as much importance as the originally stated five. So the seven points I will be looking at are (the first five are word for word from the Conservatives' website):
1. Clean up government by passing the Federal Accountability Act
2. Provide real tax relief to working families by cutting the GST
3. Make our streets and communities safer by cracking down on crime
4. Help parents with the cost of raising their children
5. Work with the provinces to establish a Patient Wait Times Guarantee
6. Effective action on the environment
7. Foreign affairs
In the interests of disclosure, I voted Conservative last election. The reasons for that were relatively simple; the Liberals had disgusted and alienated me on so many issues I couldn't even keep track any more. And that was BEFORE the sponsorship scandal. Think Talisman Energy, Shawinigate, and a slew of broken promises. There's more, but that gives you an idea. They had dug a hole so deep I couldn't - and can't - imagine it getting filled back in until they've spent a few years in the political wilderness and done a major overhaul job.
The Conservatives had a few ideas I liked, and had spent enough years mouldering in opposition to effect a real purging. The Mulroney cronies were gone and the band of neophytes and lightly seasoned MP's they were could not possible learn the levers of corruption as well as the Liberals in a mere single term, especially the short term of a minority government. So it is quite likely that I will vote Conservative again, although not necessarily with any great enthusiasm. That could yet change.
The NDP? Well, honestly, while I occasionally agree with some of their concerns, I almost invariably think that they choose the worst possible method of trying to address them. And that's when I agree...
You may have gathered that ethics in government is a major point for me. You gathered correctly.
I am not a political expert and I don't intend to spend hours and hours (a couple maybe) researching each point, so your input will be highly valued. Cheap insults won't be welcome, mind you, but thoughtful, factual input, however passionate and whether in favour or opposed, is definitely what I'm hoping to see.
If you're interested in participating, please bookmark this blog or this post (I will link the entire series back to this post) and come back to weigh in. All viewpoints are welcome, as long as they're expressed respectfully. Some of the topics plan on widening to the general principles behind them, not necessarily the very narrow focus of the stated priorities. And extra points could get added, if they seem to warrant the attention.
Technorati tags: Stephen Harper, Conservative Party of Canada
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