Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Plus Ça Change, Plus C'est la Même Chose

And so ends our election. At the end of the day - pretty much the same story as the day before.

Conservative minority government, Liberals as the official opposition, followed by the Bloc Quebecois and the NDP. The Greens lost their only MP, and there are 2 independent winners.

Harper's Conservatives gained 16 seats, the Liberals lost 19, the NDP gained 7, and I'll guess the Bloc lost the remaining 4. Oh, there's 308 total.

So what's it all mean? Well, it means Harper gets to talk about Canadians giving him a "mandate" with his whopping 37.4% of the vote. The biggest winners? Bob Rae and Michael Ignatieff. Who? You non-Canadians ask. Why, they'll be the two people fighting for the Liberal leadership when Stephane Dion is eventually forced to step down after leading the Liberals to their weakest showing ever. He might make some argument about a record low voter turnout (59.1%), but that just means that NONE of our leaders inspired anyone. Once again, the most impressive campaigners were Gilles Duceppe, whose party's goal is to get Quebec out of the country, and Jack Layton, who leads the NDP - and its goal seems to be to bankrupt the country through expensive social programs and union kowtowing. Although I have to give Stephen Harper (reluctant) respect - his victory speech was all class and hand-extending. It was probably the most eloquent thing I've heard him say.

I've got to believe that this this minority government might last a full 4-5 years before the next election. We're fatigued with these federal elections - 4 in 6 years. The Liberals have obviously shown that we're increasingly tired with their do-nothing stance (141 years is enough riding on coat-tails and avoiding responsibility) and they have to know it's time to regroup and build a strong leader and platform.

And with the NDP gain of seats, they might actually be a relevant voice in parliament again. Layton's shown a willingness to work with whoever is in power, so perhaps the Tories can reach out and put a little bit of humanity back in their plans with NDP help. Yah, I'd hate the NDP in power, but like them as a swing vote.

Interesting times? Nope. Same old shit. Harper will have some time with this victory, but in the end, I doubt he'll do anything different with it. Toronto will probably be fucked once again. Likely all the other major cities that aren't in Alberta as well, because we don't vote for the Conservatives these days. Being the polished turd of the Reform party might have something to do with it.

The last US Presidential debate is tonight - now THAT should be entertaining. McCain's got to go all-in here to stand a chance - does he have the balls? No, I'm not talking racism, fear-mongering, or guilt-by-association prattling, but actually NAILING Obama with policy, experience, platforms, and hammering him for substance over style. He's got to drop this genial old-man bit and be the fucking war hero he claims to be if he wants to possibly have a shot at the White House. If, as I suspect, the GOP is actually going to wait out the current economic crisis and let the Dems take the heat for 4 or so years, then he won't do anything of the sort tonight. You know his "new" stump speech is practically a verbatim copy of his RNC speech, right? THAT'S phoning it in.


BamBam said...

The more things change, the more they stay the same indeed!

Now we have to sit back and hope! Hope that actual Parlimentary decisions can be made and our Country can be at least be set back on an even keel.

Personally, I feel like that's a little too much to hope for! But you know me! The glass is always 1/2 full, so I'll still sit and hope!

And I totally agree with you. Mr. Harper's victorious verbiage last night, may have actually been the classiest words he's ever uttered in public!

Fuel55 said...

Commie bastards Rae and Ignatieff fawked themselves long ago. Neither takes over the Liberals at this point. The Liberals need to move back to center and starting mopping up votes from the right. Stealing votes from The NDP is fruitless.

Astin said...

I still think minority governments in this country have the best chance of actually affecting positive social change. Maybe not so much with the economic, but the mediating effects of a minority government can have positive results.

As for Rae and Ignatieff, I agree - they're terribe choice to lead the Liberals. Rae because he won't fly in Ontario after he devestated us as Premier, and Ignatieff because he's an ivory-tower douche. Ken Dryden might not be a bad placeholder until Justin Trudeau takes over the inevitable mantle of his father.

I'm not advocating either as being competent leadership mind you, but they'd at least bring some charisma and likeability to the job and the party. Get a Mulroney on the other side (just not Ben) and it'd be at least a fun face-off down the road.

Fuel55 said...

I agree completely - majority gov't is simpler but the consensus requirement of a solid minority is good for everyone.

I also agree that the next Liberal is Trudeau's placeholder. If Trudeau can reach out to Canadians emotionally (which he can) he is a shoe-in. I wonder what his policy stance will be? Hopefully he is more of Papa's good, than bad.

Fuel55 said...

Vive Le Canada.