Skip to main content

Quick Political Wow...

My apologies to those of you who hate my political posts. I'll try to keep this short.  But I can't NOT blog about the two huge shocks that just hit Canadian politics on successive days.

First of all...the NDP won Alberta.

That's some kind of joke headline, the kind of thing that wouldn't even go over on April 1st because it's so utterly ludicrous. The American periodical THE WEEK is saying it's as if the Democrats swept Texas. That's actually a fairly good comparison. And yet it happened. It happened for a myriad of reasons that all came together to produce a perfect political storm for Jim Prentice and his governing Progressive Conservatives...a party with an uninterrupted 44 YEARS in power.

Take a recession, with a forecast of more of the same...add a leader who called an early election nobody wanted on a budget nobody wanted either,  multiply the right-wing parties so as to split the vote, divide the governing party bitterly, and watch as a new bright light in the form of Rachel Notley runs a pitch-perfect campaign from the center...and voilà, electoral doom for a dynasty and something unprecedented in its place.

The federal Conservatives are worried. They have every right to be. This is their homeland, the place they've been able to take for granted for decades. If Notley's governance comes even close to matching her campaign, the letters N-D-P will gain huge currency that will only redound to the good for the party elsewhere in Canada.

You know who else should be worried? Justin Trudeau. Which makes the passage of Bill C-51 yesterday all the more puzzling.

It was going to pass anyway. The Conservatives have a majority...they can hike through whatever they want (at least until the Supreme Court of Canada gets a look at it). I guess I was holding out hope that Trudeau and his Liberals would change their minds and oppose the damned thing. I held out in vain: the bill had full Liberal support.

I don't think Canadians realize what this bill does. You know how terrorists are supposed to hate us for our freedom? Well, now we don't have any. It seems an odd way to solve the problem, but I'd expect no different from a government that claims it's tough on crime while supporting a plethora of policies proven to do nothing but create more and harder criminals. This is the party that gave government censorship power over the Internet, without judicial oversight. It's the party that gutted Statistics Canada, crippling its ability to collect meaningful data, because who needs data when you already know what's right?

So yeah, I'm not exaggerating about the complete and total loss of our freedom. It's all provisional now. If any of seventeen different government agencies decides I am a threat, you may never hear from me again. And why might they decide I'm a threat? If I so much as attend a peaceful protest...if I voice support for a regime the government doesn't approve of...if I do anything that could be construed to be negatively affecting the economy...any of these things and who knows how many more will put me in a world of hurt.

I'm not saying this will happen to me. I'm white. And I hope I've been clear enough with my position concerning ISIS and its ilk as to remove me from any suspicion.  I'm not saying it will happen to just anybody, either: the Natives will eventually blockade another highway or railroad track, or cut power to a town, and the government will ignore it magnificently just as it has in the past.

But the fact it can happen is very frightening. It will get challenged on half a hundred Constitutional grounds, and hopefully the SCC will neuter it...but any government passing a bill like this has earned my enmity. As has any government supporting it. I'm talking to you, Trudeau, you dolt.

If Mulcair plays his cards right--he's just been dealt an almost unbeatable hand--he can hammer Trudeau into political splinters and wrest power from Harper. I don't support everything in the NDP platform--I don't support everything in anybody's platform...but they have their heart in the right place. If Rachel Notley can show she can manage Canada's sputtering economic engine...who knows what might happen come November?

Memo to Notley: Hey, Rachel...don't screw it up, okay?



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Called to mind today...

Back in grade thirteen--back when there was a grade thirteen--I had one class that shaped more more than most of the rest of my educational career put together...aborted university degree included. The class was called Classical Civilizations and the teacher was the now-late Reverend Roger McCombe.
I remember selecting the course out of a desire to learn about Greco-Roman society. Well, I'll tell you, Rev. McCombe taught a little about the Greeks and Romans, but mostly he taught us about ourselves. Every day was a new adventure. We'd be given a handout at the start of nearly every class and asked to read it and ponder it. I still remember several of these things, wow, sixteen years later:

"If you have one friend in the world, you are lucky. Two and you're blessed. Three is impossible."

"Odi et amo. quare id fasciam, fortasse requiris?
nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior.
(I hate and I love. Why do I do it, you might ask?
I don't know, but I feel it happe…

"True Intimacy"

I had somebody stomp all over my go-to analogy for polyamory. Both of them, actually. It left me floundering for a minute.

I saw an opportunity to educate some people -- quite a lot of people, actually, the audience for that particular forum is potentially in the tens of millions -- on polyamory when someone joked that they had a hard enough time maintaining one relationship, and anyone trying for more than that was 'out of their minds'. 
Somebody just called me crazy on the internet! Must respond!
I jumped in to say: "as a poly person who lives with his wife and her boyfriend, and who has a girlfriend, yes, it's challenging sometimes, but I'm not crazy, thank you. Giving and receiving abundant love is actually really quite amazing."
Right away I had to confirm what I just said. People really seem to have trouble grasping that I, a man, live with my wife and her other partner, who is also a man. I find this endlessly amusing, in part because I know the reacti…

Rule 33

Rule 34: 'If it exists, there is porn of it'.
Rule 33: If it exists, I have overthought it.
Rule 33(b): 'If it does not exist, I have overthought it into existing'.


"My name is Ken B. and I'm an overthinker."
"Hi, Ken."

"Can I say just how nervous I am, here in this room with a group of strangers? I've never felt at ease in groups like this, because what are you all thinking about me?"
"We're not. Ken, we're not thinking of you at all. Oh, shit."
"Damn it, you mean you're not thinking about me AT ALL? I'M RIGHT HERE!"
"That's not what I meant, Ken, you know that. Calm down, deep breaths. You have our undivided attention in a non-threatening way. Why don't you tell us some of your background?"

Ugh, where do I begin. "I guess it started back in my pre-teens. I was a lonely kid, a bullied kid, a kid deeply uncomfortable in his own skin. It felt as if I was the only one of my ki…