In a story reported on the CBC website today, N&L premier Danny Williams has allowed the Maple Leaf to fly outside provincial courthouses, after judges expressed concerns about impartiality. According to the N&L justice minister: “We discussed it and the premier agreed that it would be inappropriate not to have the Canadian flag fly from free-standing courts.”
That the flags came down at all is outrageous. But the rationale for putting them back up at the courts only underlines the idiocy of taking them down in the first place: The Maple Leaf is not the flag of the Liberal Party of Canada, nor is it even the flag of federal government. At worst this is a partisan dispute between two levels of government; it is certainly not a dispute between the people of Canada and the people of Newfoundland, seeing as how all citizens of Newfoundland are also citizens of Canada. That is why the reason they should be flying outside the courts is the exact same reason why they should never have been taken down in the first place: The Canadian flag is a free-standing symbol, not a partisan instrument.
Williams doesn’t get it, or maybe he does. Either way, he just looks like an ignorant clown.
Meanwhile, Williams is still refusing to consider returning to the negotiating table. But what were they negotiating about? In a negotiation, two parties stake out positions, then gradually soften and make concessions as they work toward an agreement. What is Williams offering? To put the flags back on their poles?
This has been a Robert Bourassa memorial blogpost.
Update: Oh, and all that negative publicity Williams is getting? From guys like me? Apparently, it’s because I’m a stooge of the federalist propaganda machine.