Friday, November 5, 2010

Jim Prentice Blows Up Parliament

Remember, remember the Fifth of November,
The Gunpowder Treason and Plot,
I know of no reason
Why the Gunpowder Treason
Should ever be forgot.

I guess Jim Prentice couldn't wait till November 5 to blow up Parliament.

The MP and Minister of Environment from Calgary has taken a high paid executive job with CIBC. He was a respected man with his party and in general and was often thought of as a leader in waiting.

However, over the last months, Prentice probably looked at his prospects more deeply in recent months and found the future less palatable.

He saw another election looming and the prospect of sitting in cabinet holding a ministry that his party regards is lowest of priorities doing next to nothing. The possibility of leadership not only seemed far away given Harper's unchallenged hold on it but it also seemed impossible given the chance of putting yet another powerful Calgary resident in the top job.

In other words, to Prentice, this looked as good as it was going to get. And top exec jobs don't grow on trees.

So, quietly, he rolled up the gunpowder to Parliament Hill and blew it up under the government. Unlike Guy Fawkes though, Prentice won't burn. He'll be cooling his heels in the rarefied air of Canada's board rooms.

The one likely doing some burning is Harper. It is doubtful that he found Jim Prentice a threat while he controlled his fate in government. However, outside of government, he can take up a more mythical status as V.

Perhaps this is the speech Prentice as V will make next year after the yoke of Conservative caucus oppression is lifted:

I thought we could mark this November the 5th, a day that is sadly no longer remembered, by taking some time out of our daily lives to sit down and have a little chat. There are of course those who do not want us to speak. I suspect even now, orders are being shouted into telephones, and men with guns will soon be on their way. Why? Because while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. Words offer the means to meaning, and for those who will listen, the enunciation of truth. And the truth is, there is something terribly wrong with this country, isn't there? Cruelty and injustice, intolerance and oppression. And where once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. How did this happen? Who's to blame? Well certainly there are those more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable, but again truth be told, if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror.

Maybe that message will resonate with the Tories left after his departure.

In the meantime, we will be left with bloviating and further attempts to stamp out any behaviour in the Conservative party that defies the leader.

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