I had fully intended on writing an April Fool's article this morning; I had even managed to get as far as writing a few paragraphs when I realized my heart wasn't in it. Perhaps it's because so many of the headlines in recent days have been such that nothing I could have written could compete with reality for surrealism and inanity.
If I had written as dialogue some of the things that have come out of people's mouths in recent days, I would have been laughed at for being so unrealistic, paranoid, or just plain crazy. Maybe these things aren't funny in that sidesplitting way we like to associate with April Fool's, more like funny in the, "holy, I can't believe this is happening" kind of way.
Look at the Conservative Party of Canada for instance. They were elected on January 23rd, 2006, and they haven't bothered to call Parliament to deal with two fairly important issues having to do with international relations. It seems they have discovered the secret of dealing with a minority government's precarious position by the simple expedient of delaying a sitting of the House of Commons as long as possible.
One of the issues that Canadian politicians are not being given a say in is our increased military presence in Afghanistan. When Prime Minister Harper was questioned about a debate on the issue in the House, he claimed that a debate would only risk the lives of soldiers.
The very strange thing is that he has full party support for the Canadian Army in Afghanistan. What some are concerned about is our increasingly active role as aggressors instead of peacekeepers. Maybe what he is worried about is the fact that he doesn't have much public support. A poll conducted last February found that 62% of Canadians were against sending troops to Afghanistan, and 73% were in favour of having Parliament voting on the issue.
While the Prime Minister wants people to believe this is a reaction to the increase in casualties that Canadian troops have experienced in the last month, the poll was taken in mid-February, before our soldiers were repositioned onto the front lines. Even better was the pollster's remark, a former Conservative party advisor, that the results show that Canadians obviously don't know enough to make an informed decision.