Let's Have That Again In Slow Motion
For those of my Avid Fans who hail from foreign parts (like, say, Ottawa), Hansard is the designated recording organ of the House of Parliament. Their reporters and transcriptionists ensure that every dull item of minutae is comitted to paper, tape, or digital format.
And for some reason, they've never had to launch a court case for copyright violation against a peer-to-peer network ...
But sometimes the job gets exciting. Last week the jilted lover of auto-parts-magnate's-daughter Belinda Stronach (oh--and Liberal MP for Kicking Horse Pass or some such, but that's probably just temporary), Tory MP Peter MacKay, was heard to refer to Belinda indirectly as a dog. Now there are calls for his resignation.
We at Metroblog are forced to say au contraire (partly in order to cover our collectives with Canadian bilingual content regulations).
Think: jealous ex-lovers trash-talking one another without the slightest civility nor regard for discourse. This could be the next big Canadian reality TV hit!
Of course they'd have to change the law. You see, the reason there's any uncertainty as to what MacKay said (despite it being audible on tape and no-one else stepping forward to claim the audible remark, made in response to a remark directed at MacKay) is that the Hansard camera which records parliamentary procedure is forbidden by law to scan, pan, or focus on the chamber anywhere except the currently speaking MP.
Since MacKay was not actually on his hind legs at the time of the incident, there is no video record of him actually saying what he said.
Cameras were only ever allowed into Parliament only after a long legal fight to address concerns MPs expressed about the influence of video on government.
"If I pair my vote and bugger off golfing for the day, what's to prevent my constituents from seeing my empty chair?"
"Will people still love me if they see me sleeping at my desk during Question Period?"
"Will people trust us when they see the Prime Minister's clockwork being cleaned and oiled?"
Serious questions to be sure.
Despite the rules in place to safeguard the lazy and corrupt, there's been controversy:
In a famous legislative prank, Joy MacPhail--aided and abetted by women MLAs from all parties--once placed a wind-up bouncing toy that looked like a miniature penis on the [British Columbia Legislature] desk of an NDP minister during a televised legislative debate.
--From the Tyee
So hire the NHL cameramen to run the Hansard cameras--they know where to find the excitement--and put it on CBC.
"The Weakest Minister"? "Canadian, Idle"? Suggestions anyone?