10.02.2015 04:28 PM

Face à face: final debate open thread

Look, I’m sorry. I’ve reached Maximum Niqab Debate™ and so the Missus and Daughter Two and me are going to go cheer for the marooning of Matt Damon on Mars. (It’s his punishment for inflicting Ben Affleck on an undeserving world.)

So, as before, open thread. Add your comments and some of the best will form tomorrow’s KCCCC!

On y va!


  1. Derek Pearce says:

    Enjoy the movie. I’m not watching the debate either. My better half and I are going to go buy a new light fixture and then go out for dinner and forget about politics for a few hours.

  2. Vancouverois says:

    Perhaps you mean face à voile? 😛

  3. Ridiculosity says:

    Canada, we’re better than this.


  4. Rene G. says:

    Amusez-vous bien, mon ami!!

  5. Al in Cranbrook says:

    So I take in some Power Play and some Power & Politics.

    Good Gawd already! How stupid, bordering on banal can it possibly get!

    1) The niqab is a “divisive” issue, so we shouldn’t talk about it. NEWS FLASH – Elections are divisive by their very nature! It is precisely the time for all parties to make their position clear on matters of importance to those who intend to elect a government that most represents their point of views. WTF is it with the left that somehow their issues are the only legitimate ones on the table, and everyone else can takes theirs’ straight to hell with them! Everyone else’s issues are “divisive”, but there’s nothing divisive whatsoever about, oh, say f’rinstance, climate change – where the debate, we are told, is over, and all that’s left to talk about is which kind of carbon tax we’re going to jam up Canadians’ collective asses! And anyone who is skeptical will be reliably shouted down with every kind of hysterics conceivable! Especially for being “divisive” in the sense that you don’t agree with the left that climate change is beyond debate!


    2) Now the NDP are saying that this government can’t negotiate the TPP, because we are in an election. Apparently, then, Canada is excluded from the most important trade pact ever. Because we’re having an election. “Hey, can the rest of you put this on hold until we get our shit together here in Canada? No? Oh, well. *shrug* Never mind. I guess we’re out.”


    3) The negotiations aren’t transparent. Well, DUH! “Excuse me for a couple weeks now, while I go back home to America – Japan – Australia – Canada – all of the above – to have public consultations on this point you’ve raised, and let the MSM and my political opposition play it six ways to hell and back until nobody even remembers what the original point was, and then I’ll get back to you. Whereupon we can get on to the next point that comes up…and if we’re reeeeealy lucky, we can wrap all this up before we all die of old age!”


    And people wonder why so many are turned off by politics. Simple! Unrelenting, unmitigated idiocy!!!

    • Joe says:

      Have agree. As much as I have tried to avoid listening to or watching political ads this election I happened to catch some NDP candidate compare negotiating the TPP with negotiating a labour agreement. ‘Cause you know he is an expert negotiator because he once tried to negotiate a labour agreement. It was ‘stuff your fingers in your ears and shout LA LA LA’ level of stupid.

    • Curt says:

      I kind agree with you on all three observation Al.

    • Jon Adams says:

      Or maybe people are turned off rabid cheerleaders who insult people who disagree with them.

      • Frank says:

        100% behind your comments, Al. For even suggesting that maybe, just maybe, the Tories might have a point about the niqab during something as profound as one’s citizenship ‘graduation’ I was told I was “Islamaphobic”…..by my own daughter! As one whose voted NDP, Liberal, and Green over the years, I could only wonder at it all….

        • Mrs. Green Acres says:

          If we are using that analogy, all of the work happens in school and the ceremony is just for show. Heck, I almost skipped my graduation ceremony.

          Similarly, the unveiled oath happens in private. NBD as far as I am concerned.

          It’s a red herring, designed to bring out our inner racist. Don’t fall for it.

        • bobbie says:

          Agree totally with Al in Cranbrook! Well said.

  6. Lou says:

    Damn that Ben Affleck !!!

  7. Ronald O'Dowd says:


    If you were looking for anything new and exciting in the TVA Debate, better focus instead on water on Mars.

  8. Mike says:

    My ears are starting to hurt from all the dog whistling going on.

  9. Al in Cranbrook says:

    Don’t think I’ll ever force myself to sit through another translated debate.

    • Al in Cranbrook says:

      Trudeau injects abortion into the niqab debate, demanding Harper state his position on pro choice or pro life.

      He just blew it. What an ass the Liberal PM wannabe is.

      • fan590 says:

        JT continues to steam roll Harper and Mulcair.

        He’s ready for the job.

        • bobbie says:

          “steam roll Harper and Mulcair” – give me a break. Were you watching a different debate. Trudeau threw everything he had at both Mulcair AND Harper…..almost sounding desperate.

      • Ridiculosity says:

        Al in Cranbrook, issues like abortion rights are important – especially to over 50% of the voting public – Canadian women, who may face that difficult choice at some point in their lives.

        Moreover, given that Harper’s Corporation distributed flyers nationally that featured Trudeau’s face next to a photo of a fetus, it’s more than fair game.

        • Vancouverois says:

          It looked to me like a desperate attempt to revive the old “hidden agenda” canard. As Harper so reasonably pointed out, he’s already made a commitment not to reopen the issue. And he’s kept that promise. Bringing it up again just looks like an attempt to smear him rather than discuss the real issues — and as Danny points out, it does uncomfortably remind everyone that Trudeau allows no dissent on this issue within his own caucus. I think it was potentially a mistake, albeit a relatively minor one.

      • Westcoastjim says:

        HHhmm Al. Trudeau pointed out that Harper was a hypocrite and you complain that such a comment is unfair. Why don’t you just admit that you are a Tory ditto head without a thought of your own and join the racist xenophobic Conservative Party that you clearly long to cheer on. Sadly, again, Justin was the only adult in the room. This election is coming down to whether the Conservatives can rally enough small-minded racist asswipes to cling to power. Cheer them on Al. Cheer them on. Show us all your true colours.

      • Danny says:

        I thought it was dumb tactically. There are lots of Liberals that are uncomfortable with his position on abortion. It has been a non-issue up to now. So he brings it up tonight? I think it was a freelance moment that was a mistake.

        • Nicole says:

          Trudeau is looking to get more left / NDP support so mentioning his support of abortion rights helps him greatly with that. The few old Liberals still having issues with abortion, if they are actually Liberals, don’t have anywhere else to park their vote.
          At a debate where four men and no woman spent a lot of time talking about how a woman should dress, reminding the public of his clear support of a woman’s right to control her body will attract votes, especially from women. That is, in addition to those who would already support him because he has nice hair.

          • Vancouverois says:

            The few old Liberals still having issues with abortion, if they are actually Liberals, don’t have anywhere else to park their vote.

            Sure they do: the Conservatives.

            That was basically the point that Trudeau was making to those voters, whether he intended to or not.

    • Al in Cranbrook says:

      Why is it so hard for moderators to simply ask a question without editorializing?

      And why is it that just about every segment ends with Harper being cut off before he can answer some outlandish accusation?

      Really getting tired of this crap.

      • Rich says:

        Right on Al. The moderator (cough) introduced every topic with negative characterizations of Mr. Harper or the government blatantly framed as pseudo-questions. That setup was despicable.
        Constant jabs at the start of every topic he introduced made this attack monkey unfit to be a moderator again.

        • JAM says:

          It might have been freelancing but IMO the second they tried to turn the naqib into a womens issue they opened the door for other womens issues and theor record on same. The topic was completely fair game.

  10. Kevin T. says:

    Now now, Ben has redeemed himself enough by now. He’s also probably gonna be the coolest Batman ever, so. Matt Damon no longer needs to pay for that, Legend of Bagger Vance, however, is another thing.

  11. Luke says:

    I can’t have been bothered to watch this. From the Com’s synopsis, sounds to me like Harper must be a happy man. Trudeau and Mulcair pounding on the stupid niqab debate allows to Conservatives to continue to frame the debate around a topic they judge to be to their benefit. NDP and Liberals need to stop letter the Conservatives set the agenda and do so themselves. If they keep letting this happen, Harper wins. Again. Goddamnit.

  12. Vancouverois says:

    I actually watched this one! Thank goodness it had sections when the leaders went one-on-one, and was semi-moderated.

    It was still a lot of loud bickering, everyone ganging up on Harper, etc. I don’t think anyone got in any knockout blows (thought I did enjoy Harper’s hit on Trudeau about how leaders should set an example when it comes to not smoking pot). For the most part, I’m sure everyone will declare victory for the candidate they favoured before the debate, as usual.

    I have a few complaints:

    * God, it set my teeth on edge when Trudeau kept harping on “investissement”. That obviously is his latest buzzword, like “middle-class”. He must think that if he stays on message long enough, people will start to believe it. Personally, I hate it when the leaders use obvious talking points or use obviously pre-rehearsed one-liners.

    * Trudeau kept talking over others — incredibly rude. I was glad when Mulcair finally smacked him down.

    * Duceppe and his rambling about Canada Post’s “colonial” privileges. Seriously?

    However, these aren’t important in the big picture.

    I think the most telling point of the night, by far — perhaps the only truly significant one — was during Duceppe’s closing speech, when he said “It’s going to be minority. So vote for us, to give us leverage.” That is the most solid argument the Bloc has (IMHO).

    Of course, the more the Bloc splits the vote in Quebec, the greater the chance that the Conservatives will take more Quebec seats.

    Still, were I a separatist, I would find that one argument of Duceppe’s compelling.

    • Vancouverois says:

      Addendum: I’m also annoyed that they spent so much time on the damned niqab “issue”, but completely avoided talking about C-24 even though there was a direct question about it. (Unless I somehow missed it — I was in a room with other viewers who sometimes talked over the debate).

      • Vancouverois says:

        Addendum to the Addendum: I somehow blanked out the most annoying moment of all — when Mulcair had the gall to talk about how you shouldn’t target a particular group, when as a Quebec Liberal he’s spent HIS ENTIRE POLITICAL CAREER helping the slow separatists (oh, sorry: Quebec nationalists) target the anglophone community of Quebec. The hypocrisy of it left me speechless with rage.

    • Campbell says:

      Duceppe does kind of have a point about Canada Post…Their absolute rights over all private land in Canada is reminiscent of a time long gone by.

  13. Rich says:

    Tell me again how the government’s decision regarding the niqab is so onerous and a violation of rights.
    Do it after reading this:- http://www.ctvnews.ca/world/cairo-university-bans-teachers-from-wearing-niqab-1.2591918
    In short…. pffft
    Seems to me as if this whole inflated drama with the pompous , badly acted
    stage performances with their feigned and overblown sense of righteous outrage can now be put to rest. Tommy and Justin ….you are not up to the job.

    • Curt says:

      Here’s the thing. Does the lady come to Canada to be a Pakistani living in Canada or does she come to Canada to be a Canadian?

    • Campbell says:

      I don’t think there’s a comparison to be made between Canada’s federal government enacting a regulation that is clearly in violation of our laws (and persisting in pushing for it in the face of two failed legal challenges) and a single university in Cairo banning their employees (teachers) from teaching while wearing a niqab. There’s a difference between the federal government of a country banning something that a) is a personal choice and b) harms no one, and an employer making rules for their employees.
      I see the University of Cairo’s actions along the same lines as a swimming pool operator insisting that its lifeguards not wear a niqab. There is no comparison to be made to an overarching federal government policy.

  14. Christian Giles says:

    Ben Affleck is Batman. Sorry…

  15. Mrburnsns says:

    Forget about the TVA debate, what’s your take on the Rick Dykstra story.

  16. fan590 says:

    How was the movie? Considering going to see it or Everest tomorrow night. Haven’t been too impressed with Ridley Scott’s movies over the past few years but am tempted because I’m a huge fan of scifi.

  17. Maps Onburt says:

    I thought Warren had a good idea, so I went and watched the Martian too… Matt was OK. I liked the science, it was pretty predictable, a couple of chuckles but was worth a few bucks to spend night away from all the yammering. Doesn’t sound like I missed much.

  18. Westcoastjim says:

    The only question tonight is whether Harper is a xenophobic racist ass or whether he just plays one on TV. #mostembarressingprimeministetever

  19. Danny says:

    You know what, I think the Conservatives are fighting a fight to win. If you are not willing to fight a little dirty for what you want, you just don’t want it enough.
    I don’t think they are proud of it. I saw a picture of Kelli Leitch tonight and she didn’t look proud of what she was saying about some ‘Barbaric Practices’ hot line. But I think they have figured out that there is a constituency in Quebec, Ontario outside Toronto, and parts of BC that agree with what they are saying. And it may get them to a majority.
    I think Mulcair and Trudeau won the debate battle tonight. They both took the high moral ground, appealing to our better Canadian values. But I think Harper is looking to win the war, and moved towards that goal tonight.

  20. cassandra says:

    17 days to go, 17 more blissful, happy debatable moments before were trapped with the govt we deserve.

  21. dean says:

    Mulcair’s “all the leaders are against women wearing the niqab” did it for me. i’m done with the ndp forever. i was frustrated at trudeau for suggesting it was only immigrated women who wore the niqab, but mulcair’s complete disrespect and inability to see it as a choice did me in,

    maybe i am unique in that i have female friends who took to the niqab later in life and are very vocal about how much of a choice it was.

    but – giving him the benefit of the doubt that he does not truly believe what he says, i’ve conlcluded mulcair will say anything to win.

  22. Derek Pearce says:

    In light of the new promise to help us spy and snitch, my friends and I have created a new meme on Facebook– what you’re going to report the RCMP Barbaric Practices Tipline.

    “Hello, tipline? My neighbour is wearing white after labour day. Barbaric!”
    “Hello, tipline? My neighbour ate a salad with a dinner fork. Bestial!”
    “Hello, tipline? My neighbour paired plaid cushions with a floral sofa. Animals!”
    “Hello, tipline? My neighbour served red wine in rosé glasses. Completely savages!”

  23. Scott says:

    Looks like Canadians are not going to fall in line with the Cons imported racist from Australia (see nanos this morning). We actually should tar and feather that asshole and ship him back.

    • Maps Onburt says:

      Boy, you progressives sure are tolerant and support everyone’s right to an opinion don’t you? I don’t know why it is so hard for you to understand that 80+ percent of Canadians hate the idea of someone hiding the face because she’s being treated as second class and subservient. We don’t hate her… It’s what she stands for doing to our women and daughters. Of course if was Jimbo from Arkansas of the Klu Klux Klan, you’d be out to lynch him. You’re such a bunch of hypocrites.

      • Scott says:

        C,mon Maps, they brought this jerk here to stir up shit and set Canadians on a witch hunt. Me, I’d hoof him in the nuts, but then, I’m not the most politically correct kind of guy.

        • Maps Onburt says:

          Tar and feather… Hoof him in the nuts. Just for having an opinion different than yours -‘that 80+% of Canadians agree with??? Yep, you progressives sure are tolerant….NOT.

          • Scott says:

            He can have any opinion he wants Maps. But he can’t intentionally foist his bigotry on the rest of us in order to pit Canadians against each other. Well, he can but we shouldn’t fall for it.

    • MoeL says:

      Agree! Actually, I would rather they “deport” him. Do we have a Kim Campbell moment in the making here?

  24. zing says:

    Now that Trudeau is at 35% in the Nanos poll, will people flock to comment boards and exclaim that Trudeau is “near a majority if not already there” or is “winning the election” which are comments that Conservatives made when polling placed them in a similar position?

  25. patrick says:

    Worse case scenario: Niqab wearing Sammi is too tired to go to her Canadian citizenship, she sends Niqab wearing Jill instead. Jill as Sammi gets sworn in as Sammi. Sammi is a citizen. Not Jill. The Niqab actually prevents any possible fraud taking place since there can be no mistaken photograph such as one put on a license or passport. Now why anyone would do this is just bizarre but sillier things have happened. Oh and Canada collapses in the face of a piece of cloth. Again, the rabid slogs obediently tilt and rage at the windmills as chosen by venal, cynical, vulgar leaders.

  26. Sean says:

    In the eyes of Trudeau worshippers, they would have him batting fourth for the Toronto Blue Jays. And he likely believes he’s the guy for that position.

  27. Al in Cranbrook says:

    Ekos, sampling of 2,609…

    CPC – 33.4
    Libs – 26.7
    NDP – 25.6

    CPC leading in Ontario and BC, second in Quebec @ 24%.


  28. ottlib says:

    Maybe it is just me but I find the “tip line” announcement to be an ad lib in the Conservative campaign similar to Paul Martin announcing that a Liberal government would not use the Notwithstanding Clause during a debate in 2006.

    It seems to me to be an act of a party that is looking at the very real possibility of defeat.

    Then the Nanos poll comes out showing that they are behind the Liberals by more than the margin of error for the first time this election. Are these two events a coincidence?

    As well, are the Conservatives overplaying the niqab hand? Disliking the Niqab is one thing but informing on your neighbours? Are Canadians really going to be comfortable with that? I hope not.

    As well, there is probably a very real danger of the broader electorate reaching Maximum Niqab Debate™ stage and tuning it out, if they have not already done so. Do they continue pushing this issue and if so can they sustain it for two very long weeks? Are they thinking of the long-term harm that their brand could suffer if they do so?

    I do not believe the Conservatives have been running the election campaign they envisioned when this whole thing started and that is beginning to show.

    • Vancouverois says:

      I think the “tip line” announcement is potentially similar in impact, but the motivation is different. I don’t think it’s something the Conservatives have turned to in desperation; it’s that they’ve found an issue that is potentially a winning one, and are pushing it as far as they can go.

      Unfortunately for them, I do think the “informing on your neighbours” thing is pushing it way too far, and will go over badly if they push it rather than letting it drop.

      And again, I’m surprised that there has been so much emphasis is on the niqab — which from either side is really a trivial issue — and so little on C-24 and the idea of stripping citizenship from convicted traitors, which is considerably more important (IMHO).

  29. Jason Smith says:

    And Jason Kenney just released a petition…..

    …against ISIS.

    A petition…against…ISIS.


    Do we really need a petition to know people don’t like ISIS?

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