Friday, September 10, 2010

A new right-wing force bent on changing Quebec's political culture? Think I heard this one before

The new libertarian organization whose raison d'etre is to change Quebec's political culture from one of centre-left nationalism to far right-wing ideology will apparently have its launch party on October 23rd Quebec City who hope to get about 200 in attendance, and in true profit-driven style, will have it at $25 per head. From the Globe and Mail:

They call themselves Réseau Liberté Québec, or the Quebec Freedom Network, and could be considered Quebec’s version of the right-wing populist Tea Party in the United States.

Each of the six founding members has put up $500 to rent a hall in a Quebec City hotel for the group’s first major gathering on Oct. 23. Donations are coming in and the group hopes to attract more than 200 people at $25 a head, believing the fledgling effort will grow into a grassroots right-wing movement.

“This will be a place for the right to come together,” said founding member Joanne Marcotte, whose documentary L’illusion tranquille criticized Quebec’s welfare state. “People with right-wing views can’t express themselves, they have nowhere to meet and are dispersed. This will be an opportunity to create a movement.”

You have to commend these folks for wanting to give Quebec conservatives a voice on their provincial stage, since the last group that did has shrivelled into basic nothingness. Democracy is good when all the voters and concerns are represented.

Yet, how much confidence do these people actually invest in electoral success for their ideas? The collapse of the ADQ, the hit the Harper government took over their lack of support for the arts in 2008, the near-collapse of support for the federal Conservatives in Quebec over things like the long-gun registry, and the pandering they now have to do with federal funding for arenas... it doesn't seem to me like Quebec is exactly ripe for right-wing, libertarian-bent government, or ideas, or even tolerate the presence of it.

Not saying that they won't find some fertile ground, as the ADQ certainly has some base support, as do federal Conservatives. But the idea that this "Quebec Freedom Network" will be able to change the province's nature as a generally left-wing breeding ground is probably not going to work. Outside of core areas in Beauce and the Quebec City suburbs, there just isn't enough support, and there certainly won't be for the next generation.

To make matters a little more amusing, the group is supported by Fox News North's two benefactors former PMO spokesperson Kory Teneycke, and Quebecor owner Pierre-Karl Péladeau, with the former speaking at the aforementioned launch party. Is there any way to make the bias any more obvious than this? At least Fox South attempts to say they're fair and balanced - Teneycke and co. don't even bother trying.

But, let's give Réseau Liberté Québec the benefit of the doubt - let's say they actually do manage to gain some traction in whatever party they choose to influence. What are their alternative ideas for Quebec's future? What are their ideas for Quebecers to embrace?
Les organisateurs du RLQ invitent donc tout citoyen qui souhaite réduire la taille de l'État, rétablir l'équité intergénérationnelle et que cesse l'endettement du Québec à assister à une première québécoise. Si vous déplorez le biais gauchiste des médias, en avez marre du gaspillage éhonté des fonds publics et si vous croyez que le Québec a assez produit de rapports d'experts et gouvernementaux, faites-vous plaisir et soyez présents le 23 octobre prochain. De même, si vous constatez comme nous que la pression exercée par les syndicats, entreprises grassement subventionnées, bureaucrates, technocrates et experts en "réingénierie sociale" nuit à la prospérité du Québec, soyez de ceux qui feront entendre leur voix.

Enfin, si vous trouvez important que l'on remette en question un multiculturalisme trop naïf, venez entendre des gens qui n'ont pas peur de vigoureusement défendre l'identité québécoise.
Good luck with that, boys.


  1. They also want to take the sovereignty question off the table; that whole "oui" or "non" question, which goes to show how unrealistic they really are. The question of Quebec's place within or without Canada is still far from resolved and as time goes on, it can't realistically remain that way forever. But, their idea is to leave Quebec as is, but refuse all transfer payments from the Feds.

    Like so many of these other tea-bagger movements, this gang of six can't even agree on what they should be mandating, really.

    At least the Lucides were far more organized and they were more Progressive Conservative-ish than this motley group of misfits.

    Funny, there was a rumour in Montreal about Lucien Bouchard starting a new center right political party that was socially liberal, largely made up of those former Lucides. Rumour had it that former QC health minister, Philippe Couillard and former PQ Education minister, Francois Legault were going to be somehow involved as well.

    I also find it a 'coincidence' that this tea-bagger movement in QC comes out while there are disputes about Shale gas production in Quebec being halted due to further environmental studies and our moratorium of 1997 on deep water drilling; yes, I'm talking about Old Harry, the oil well in the Gulf which Quebec has be in dispute with Danny Millions. No doubt these tea-baggers want to proceed with oil production and damn the environmental studies. After all, Climato-skepticism is part of their mantra.

  2. It really is amazing that, after Mario Dumont's own failure to "take the question off the table," they believe they're going to the be the ones who are successful. Even the PLQ realizes by now that Quebec's population will always see themselves as different from Canada, and that because of this, a segment will always believe that the differences make us totally incompatible.

    Funny, though, I knew the part about Bouchard (rumours will be rumours, of course), but not about the Shale gas production. It does seem like a tad bit more than a coincidence, eh!