The four horsemen

I tried to watch the entire two-hour debate, I really did. Steve Paikin was a good host, the format was workable, the questions pointed, but Gilles Duceppe eventually drove me away. At times he spoke gibberish. Let’s cut off the Bloc’s public money. Canada has a history of regional political parties becoming national parties but the BQ has been around twenty years without showing any interest in growing beyond Quebec’s borders. All they do now is prevent a majority government. Without the multi-million dollar annual subsidies they would wither away as well they should.

Jack Layton had the best one liners. To the prime minister: “Where’s the old Steven Harper gone? You’ve become what you used to oppose.” To Michael Ignatieff, “You’re Mr. Harper’s best friend.” His crack about crooks in the Senate, however, was a step too far. As for Ignatieff, he had his moments, but for an intelligent man who has lived abroad, written a stack of books, and commented on public issues for decades he seemed tongue-tied. I was embarrassed for him. He could not even muster a response to Layton’s challenge about his poor attendance in the House of Commons.

Stephen Harper did well. He was unflappable and not about to stick his toe into the traps set for him. His relentless stare into the camera worked for me. The others looked like three men in a tub. Harper won the night on points.

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