CAtO vs. the Globe and Mail
"Indeed, the most important characteristic Mr. Harper has shown over 33 months in office is a capacity to grow. There is no reason to think he won't continue along the same trajectory if re-elected — a good thing, too, since there is much more for him to learn.
Instead of carping about a dysfunctional Parliament, for which he holds much responsibility, Mr. Harper should throw out his previous playbook and try making the institution work. It would mean displaying the confidence to operate outside his comfort zone of near-absolute control, but it is a mission built for a true conservative. And, no, Senate reform is no substitute for getting the House of Commons operating well."
Me, before the election, not endorsing the Conservative party:
"in my opinion, the Conservative party wishes to remake this country into one much more similar to the U.S., as opposed to the 'second tier socialistic country' (in Harper's words) that it is now (in their opinion).
But in pursuing this goal the Conservatives see the traditional institutions, the checks and balances as things that stand in their way. So, far from wanting to reinforce the strength of Canada's independent institutions that check the government's power and to work within the system, the Conservative's want to weaken those institutions and remove anything that prevents them from remaking the system as they wish.
In government we have seen the Conservative party at war with the media, at war with Elections Canada, in a battle with the nuclear energy safety regulator and further Conservative government will lead, in my opinion, to more attacks on and more weakening of, the independent institutions that provide a check on the government."
So here we are, faced with a serious economic crisis, and Harper decided that it was a good time to try and weaken some of the institutions (unions and opposition parties) that keep the Conservatives from unfettered rule, and now, when he has obviously lost the confidence of the House of Commons as a result, Harper vows to 'use all legal means' to resist bowing to the will of the majority of our elected representatives, and we see newspapers articles seriously considering having Harper fire the Governor General rather than give up the reins of power.
I'd score this CAtO 1, Globe 0.
On the other hand, when I wrote that, "Harper has a de facto majority for at least the next two years since nobody will want to trigger another election." I wasn't predicting that Harper's second vote would be a confidence motion on bankrupting all three opposition parties, so I missed that one.