Thursday, 28 February 2008

Where's the PQ, Now that the Talking Is Getting Tough on Health Care?

Coming up for air after three days of intense concentration on the ERDC class action authorization hearing, and I realize that I haven't heard any meaningful comment from the Parti Québécois, the supposed major left wing party in Quebec provincial politics on the controversial report on health care handed down 10 days ago.

What is going on? Why hasn’t Parti Québécois leader Pauline Marois come out against the more egregious proposals of the Castonguay report on Quebec’s health care? She's made some insignificant comments, but hasn't even congratulated the one dissident voice on the panel, Michel Venne, who was named to it by the PQ.

The Liberal Health Minister Philippe Coulliard promptly said no to proposals to introduce user fees and, while he may have backpedaled some, clearly distanced himself from moves by the right wing in Quebec politics to dismantle universal health care.

The very left wing Quebec solidaire party attacked a number of the report's proposals, and the right wing ADQ (quite predictably) called for more privatization. The puzzle is why the Parti Québécois, which for so long was thought to be a rampart of progressive ideas in Quebec has said so very little

It is a most disturbing state of affairs, and one which the PQ should not let go on, at the risk of becoming completely irrelevant on the provincial scene.

But then again there are those who'd say the PQ has been irrelevant for a long time.

(Apropos of the ERDC hearings: I was so wrapped up in them that I completely forgot that I'd agreed to talk last night to a group of children's writers about royalties, taxes, and stuff like that. My sincerest apologies. I don't think I've forgotten anything so totally and inconsiderately in 20 years: the last time was when I was involved in the 1988 federal election campaign and I missed a parent-teacher meeting!)

1 comment:

Jack Ruttan said...

I missed the wrap party for my T.V. show for basically the same reason.