Friday, June 5, 2009

This is Not Your Daddy's Liberal Party Anymore

Update: It's now a revolt

So suck it up.

I don't know a single lawyer - prosecutors included - that want to see this law get passed, save for the bird that is currently our Minister of Justice.

This is one of the dumbest things I've seen the Liberal Party of Canada support in decades. It's right up there with that immigration bill we let pass last May that cost us about 5 ridings in the GTA.

Unfrickinbelievable. Is that one word?



Don't Tase Me, Bro! said...

Whatever happened to the good old days when our party was proposing to decriminalize marijuana? Oh how I long for those nostaglic days.

Anonymous said...

Makes you miss Paul Martin....

James Curran said...

Ah yes nosaligia. I remameber those days waaay back in '06. But no, I don't miss PMPM.

Lizt. said...

I just do not beleive the Bloc going to support it?
Do you mean all will not look good at all..shame on them !!....just when I thought things were looking up.....

roblaw said...

James, as everyone knows, I'm a Blogging Tory. I'm a President of my provincial PC constituency. But - I am also a lawyer. I understand how the system works and the results of incarceration.

This law is small-minded and irresponsible.

Guaranteed incarceration is a stupid idea, it's that simple. There will be cases where it's appropriate, and cases where it isn't - and by painting all offenders with one brush, you will guarantee two things:

a) Government spending will increase exponentially (last I checked we were in a massive deficit, weren't we?). Why?

Well - to begin with, the jails will be filled and new jails will have to be built, and new guards will have to be hired.

Secondly - there will be no "plea bargaining". Jail is Jail. So - as defence counsel, with no discretion in the Crown, you will be running more trials.

(And - I'll let you in on a little insider info. The lawyers who work for the Defendants, by and large, are better by a long shot. Why? Well, for example, my billing rate is $375.00 per hour. Federal Crown prosecutors, at least in 2007, were getting paid $80.00 per hour.)

As reported in Lawyers Weekly, Sept 7, 2007:

"Drug prosecution costs soared to their highest level in history during the Conservative government’s first year in office – comprising more than half the $50-million tab billed by private-sector law firms who represented the federal Crown in criminal and civil litigation in 2006-2007."

That was a 24% increase from the prior year.

b) Those who commit drug offenses will be more likely to re-offend. Why?

Because jails teach one thing. How to be a criminal. Jail does not "rehabilitate", it does the opposite. For every offender we hear about committing a crime while on probation, there are ten who use probation as an opportunity to get their shit together. Guarantee jail terms will increase the tendency of those convicted to become lifetime criminals and will reduce their likelihood of being contributing members of society. It's that simple.

And you're right James - it's bad enough that the Conservatives are pressing this legislation through - trading on the fear and paranoia of the electorate, trolling for votes of the right.. it's even more tragic that the Liberal party is in step with that.

It just goes to show - politics in this Country is sick. It's about getting elected and holding power - it's hardly about doing the right thing.

Spudster said...

Once the Bloc go on about the Liberals supporting throwing teenagers in jail, our Quebec support will evaporate. Both the bloc and NDP will vote against this bill, and our votes will evaporate there.

Also, there is no way in British Columbia that we can get back Saanich-Gulf Islands or even Victoria now. I worry that Keith Martin may even lose his reelection because of our party's irresponsibility here.

The polling data is clear that decriminalization is a vote winner. More than half of the Canadians consistenly poll in favour of legalization. In BC, that number is 65% as of last month.

Mandatory minimums have alienated MANY people in this party and is actually a minority position in Canada. Honestly, he is NOT winning support by doing this. It's bad policy and politics. The volunteer base and the energy of the convention is gone and the groundtroops for the next election will be missing. There is still a chance Ignatieff, take leadership here and find balance. For the unity of this party, PLEASE.

roblaw said...

I've sometimes made fun that Ignatieff is a closet conservative, or that his past will make a Conservative election easier.

It isn't worth it. This bill is tremendously bad.

Earth Man said...

I sent this to the party this morning and it is for real:

subject: Support C-15 lose BC Liberals - this one for sure

if you support the mandatory minimums legislation I will send you back my Liberal Party Membership and not support the Party further.

I live Vancouver but I have lived and worked in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto.

It has less support in the population as a whole than the opposite.

sjw said...

I didn't sign up for this shite.

Ignatieff's Bill C-15 maneuvering makes me think of Captain Quint's famous Jaws statement: "this shark is either very smart, or he's very dumb"..

Anonymous said...

Looks like emails are being blocked from people letting the caucus know their displeasure. Therefore, people who want to oppose C-15 should also call the OLO at 613-996-6740 and let him know that way.

Demosthenes said...

So it's a vote-loser, it only increases the Conservatives' cachet among Conservative/Liberal leaners, it alienates the base and potential NDP/Liberal switchers, and anybody who knows what they're talking about thinks it's terrible.

I suppose, perhaps, it wasn't Dion that was the problem after all.