Monday, January 24, 2011

More Quebec, Less Ottawa?

Every time I drive into Calgary from the south I see several parked semi-trailers with "More Alberta, Less Ottawa" written across them in big blue letters.  They've been there at least ten years - predating the arrival in Ottawa exactly five years ago of Big Blue himself, Stephen Harper.  Despite fears of a religious "hidden agenda", the fact is the country has benefited over that politically and financially precarious period from a healthy dose of Alberta pragmatism after decades of dominance by a crooked Liberal elite from Quebec.  However, I'm admittedly ambivalent about Quebec these days.  On one hand I still think it's inevitable that sooner or later the separatists will get the upper hand and la belle province will be "outta here".  (The result, in my estimation, of having been incompletely conquered in the first place, and spoiled rotten ever since confederation in the second place.)  On the other hand, it seems like les Quebecois are taking the right steps to proactively protect their culture from islamization (just as they did from anglicisation), while the rest of the country tries to pretend it's not happening.  They're availing themselves of their considerable provincial rights and instituting measures the rest of Canada is too timid to contemplate in that regard.  Maybe that billboard should read "More Quebec, Less Ottawa" these days - at least on that issue.  On second thought ...