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pistols at dawn

This Magazine Staff

The Warren-Kinsella-against-the-world show continues, with a new player upon the stage, Andrew Coyne.
To quickly recap: Coyne wrote a very good piece in yesterday’s Post summarising the motherlode of BS that Crouton and the Headwaiter are asking us to believe about the “Sponsorship Program” (which, depending on whom you ask, either did or did not exist before the year 2000).
Warren took exception to a sarcastic but, IMO, fairly mild comment Coyne made about Warren’s role in the appointment of M. Guite in 1997. WK fired off a letter to Coyne, then a column to the Post, responding to Coyne’s claims. Coyne then fired up his long-dormant website to respond to Warren. Each, meanwhile, is CCing/BCCing their stuff to Editors, Spectors, and then sticking it all on their blogs.
Vague threats about libel lawyers getting involved continue to be made.
Paul Wells cheers them on, between sips on his slurpee.
Canada needs more of this. In the absence of hockey, this sort of old-fashioned donneybrooking is extremely good for the national spirit; it is nice to see that raw partisanship flourishes outside the GM Place or the Bell Centre.
Now, I know Coyne won’t like this interpretation. He would complain that I’m simply feeding the unhappy view that this is all a “game”, with no consequences beyond the “theatre” of it all.
Not so. I believe that the Gomery inquiry, and Chretien’s ongoing disregard for the constitution, the rule of law, and rules in general, and his nonstop desire to help his friends and harm his enemies, have made it certain that history will not look well on his premiership. From APEC to BDC to Gomery, Chretien has shown no desire to take responsibility for actions which, in an ideal world, would see him jailed. I take this very seriously.
But I also believe that the best way to ensure responsible government is through strong, responsible opposition. If Mulroney wasn’t such a big tool, if Manning hadn’t been such an Ottawa-hating westerner, and if Bouchard hadn’t been such a back-stabbing traitor to his friends and his country (so much for having to choose), that is to say: If the Conservatives hadn’t gone from majority status to two seats, then Crouton wouldn’t have been given a free ride for ten years.
Which is to say: If you want to blame anyone for the Chretien years, you should blame anyone but Chretien. Blame the bozos who permitted the Bloc Quebecois to form Chretien’s first Official Opposition.
That’s why I’m delighted to see the lads getting mud on their pantaloons.

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