It has been a thoroughly entertaining past 72 hours in Canadian politics, by Canadian standards anyway -- otherwise, how else could Storage Wars Canada survive past its pilot episode, and the Republic of Doyle be in its fourth season? But I digress.
Yes, the Honourable Mike Duffy and the Right Honourable Stephen Harper are now in a political beef that has become the Miley Cyrus vs. Sinead O'Connor of Wellington Street. I apologize if this reference made any of you have mental images of either of these two gentlemen on a wrecking ball or twerking.
Prime Minister Harper stood in the House of Commons on Wednesday essentially denying the allegations made by the pride of Kanata errr Cavendish, Prince Edward Island on Tuesday. That's right, the prime minister basically pulled a political "oh no you didn't" sans neck shake or finger wag.
To make matters better/worse (depending on your perspective), Senators Pamela Wallin and Patrick Brazeau spoke later in the afternoon of Wednesday, which is sure to spur follow-up questions for the Prime Minister.
But despite the brief entertainment value, I am unimpressed by the fact that Harper, Duffy, Wallin and Brazeau are all choosing to address this in the House or the Senate. The reason is: all this speech is protected by a concept known as parliamentary privilege; a concept which is hundreds of years old and has strayed so far away from its original purpose that it does not really serve any Canadian's interest (other than parliamentarians themselves). This is not to be confused with the Senate itself.
Under parliamentary privilege, members and senators are able to speak freely while enjoying the complete protection from prosecution or civil liability, including (and this is according to the House of Commons website) make statements about people which they may hesitate to make without the protection of privilege.
That's right, seeing Mike Duffy and Stephen Harper trade jabs inside the friendly confines of parliamentary privilege is like watching Dion Phaneuf pick on whatever 170 pound forward after the whistle: they know it is not going to escalate to anything serious.
But while these politicians are hiding behind a procedural loophole, arguing over certain senators' use of taxpayer funds to cover their living expenses, ordinary Canadians (some of which are unable to make mortgage payments on their ONLY homes) are stuck with the bill either way and are actually financing this ongoing soap-opera.
So, here's an idea, and something fed-up mothers have told fighting siblings plenty of times: take it outside! Let's see who is able to step outside of the protection of parliamentary privilege and make statements that any party who feels they are untrue could sue upon. I think it is the only way Canadians are going to (a) get to the bottom of this, and (b) save a tonne of money in the process other than by switching to GEICO.
Otherwise, people (you know who you are) just save the hot air for renewable energy, and the drama for Netflix.
And, Netflix, if you are listening, please do not make a Canadian version of House of Cards.