Crawl Across the Ocean

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Rhyme and Punishment

Apparently, the Conservatives have a new plan to ensure that, "serious crime will mean serious time."

That's a direct quote from our Justice Minister, Vic Toews - seriously.

I guess I hadn't realized we were being governed by rhyming catchphrase. But it's does help to make sense of things these days.

I expect Human Resources Minister Diane Finley to explain that the family allowance plan is not means tested because if you're "rich and with child - here's some money, go wild."

Environment Minister Rona Ambrose will soon tell us that there's, "No need to take care, no need to prepare, no need to be fair, it's all just hot air"

And Vic Toews will be back to announce a crackdown on marijuana use by noting that, "if you're stoned, you're boned."

This post is pretty superficial, but I've already explained that I don't think taking discretion away from judges will lead to better decisions so I don't see any need to comment further on the proposed increases to mandatory sentencing. I just think it's reflective of the balance between critical thought and populist posturing that has gone into this measure when the Minister responsible for it is explaining it in rhyme.


  • From experience I've discovered that right wingers don't understand sarcasm, humour, satire, metaphor and analogy. I've never really been able to find the appropriate manner for successfully getting my point across to the stereotypical conservative supporter.

    Now, however, I intend to give rhyming catchphrases a try! Thanks Vic (and you too, Declan)!

    By Blogger Simon, at 2:02 PM  

  • Harper was using the quote 'serious time for serious crime' during the course of the election. So, it's definitely a recurring theme for them. They are definitely coming up with the sound bites to try and sell their laws.

    By Blogger Bailey, at 4:17 PM  

  • "They are definitely coming up with the sound bites to try and sell their laws."

    Well, that's a telling criticism - we can't have a government that tries to sell their policies; that just won't do!

    >We tried the "Good Cop" / It was a flop
    >We're relieving taxation / across the whole Nation

    By Blogger deaner, at 4:30 PM  

  • We've learned to put up with, the lame sound bite / but when they rhyme, that's just not right.

    By Blogger Declan, at 5:21 PM  

  • This transcends political orientation, of course. I remember Mike Harcourt, introducing an anti-solicitation bylaw as the Mayor of Vancouver, saying: "what it means is: 'Be discreet / don't use the street' "

    By Blogger deaner, at 6:04 PM  

  • Certainly nobody has a monopoly on populist posturing, although I think you see it more on the 'wings' and less in the centre.

    It doesn't correlate all that well with good policy in my experience, and the Conservatives seem to be the main practitioners at the moment.

    By Blogger Declan, at 6:34 PM  

  • This government coming up with enlightened, good policy is looking to be about as likely as rhyming with orange.

    By Blogger Mark Francis, at 9:07 PM  

  • Declan-

    Be fair. They're the main practitioners because they happen to form the government right now.

    By Blogger KevinG, at 9:56 PM  

  • Kevin - Certainly the governing party is the one that spends the most time selling policies, but the Liberals were in power for how long? If your theory is true, their must be lots of examples out there for the finding... :)

    Payroll tax grief for actuarial relief?

    Quick capitulation on equalization?

    You'd have to be on crack, to make war in Iraq?

    There's gotta be something.

    By Blogger Declan, at 12:04 AM  

  • I dunno. It's possible that Chretien was rhyming stuff off left and right; we just couldn't understand him. To Ti-Jean, maybe "Get out of my way / or I'll throttle you" is a couplet, just like "If you demonstrate / we will pepper spray you."

    Or maybe not...

    By Blogger deaner, at 9:33 AM  

  • OK, bad spin yes but maybe not so much rhyming :)

    By Blogger KevinG, at 1:29 PM  

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