Strong and “Steady and Stable” Conservative Majority

Orange Crush
Layton’s going to “focus” on about 5 things according to his sort-of-victory speech.
It’s hard to focus on an Orange Crush sugar rush.

May: “It’s an election that proves that pundits aren’t very useful.” (Green poll pundits were way off too, with Carr placing 4th in Vancouver Centre.)

Liberals in Regina
Iggy lost. Period.

Duceppe lost. Period.

Harper won, his lying and hiding strategy obviously worked. I’d congratulate him, but I don’t feel it was a very honourable campaign, or victory. While there are many honourable people working for the Conservatives, they don’t have control of that party and it shows in the results of their party’s work.

Some pollsters were close with their guesses, and changed the election with their feedback loop that informed the voters that it was okay to vote NDP instead of Liberal. My electoral prediction on James Bow’s blog were way off in most cases (flip the Liberals and NDP, and give nearly all Bloc to CPC and I’m bang on), except for popular vote which I apparently nailed down weeks ago when I placed my bet. I also won a bet with Mark H. in Saskatoon, and the benefactor of my prediction will be a park that needs a volunteer. Thank-you Mark; make Saskatoon Shine! Photos will be appreciated.
Fairvote.ca’s predictions were these.

I’m disappointed, and concerned about the future of Canada, but sometimes things have to get worse before enough people are willing to make them get better.

CBC Q’s DJ had a short dispute with me about the number of parties now in the House. His was a ‘Top Tweet’ around the world that has helped propel the phrase “Conservative Majority” to the top 10 (9) most tweeted in the world tonight (Saddam Hussein was strangely 10th). Evan Solomon claimed that the vote splitting in many ridings between the Liberals and NDP “sent votes” to the Conservatives. Sorry Evan, we don’t have that sort of electoral system (yet, but it’d be nice if we did). Live TV can’t be easy, but if the media was a bit more sober it would inform people better. I guess it won’t matter for 2016, as the Conservatives will shut the CBC down for the most part. I probably won’t have a local CBC station by then to protest in front of next election.

With approximately 40% of the popular vote, Stephen Harper has been given a majority government despite his government being recently defeated on CONTEMPT, the issue of lying to Parliament on several occasions. I have to wonder how many Canadians are concerned about the legitimacy of Parliamentary process, and what the loss of it will mean for each of us.

First Past the Post (FPTP) had its way tonight and was a major player. Convincing the Conservatives to pass electoral reform would be like convincing a dog to vote for fewer tummy rubs. Less than 2% increase in his popular vote was enough to hand Harper another ~20 seats to give him majority control of the House of Commons. He already has control of the Conservative majority Senate. Soon he will appoint more Supreme Court justices too. I’ll stop there before I concern you (more).

It’s going to be an interesting 5 years in Canada. One bright note is that progressive accomplishments in the next half decade will be all the more sweet and hard won, and Canadians will see if repeating the mistake they made on Mulroney will be repeated as it’s widely expected among the majority of Canadian voters.

The bubbling enthusiasm I felt this campaign, this morning, and through the day, left me when I turned on the radio to hear the results. Staying positive is hard tonight, I’m indulging in some wallowing, but I’ll get back to it all with a smile on my face sooner than later, and not just wait for grassroots change, I’m going to be grassroots quack-grass; difficult to uproot, and spreading my reach with the determination of a weed. I don’t want my strategy to be “Duck and Cover” until 2016.

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9 responses to “Strong and “Steady and Stable” Conservative Majority

  1. I am both shocked and not so shocked. Despite wanting to see a return to Liberal governments, when I heard that zinger Layton delivered on Ignatieff aboutt his attendance (even though he was out doing town halls) and saw the dumb speechless look on Ignatieff’s face as he gasped for a reply, then heard about the NDP surging, I knew we were headed for a Conservative majority. The shocking part was the flip between the Liberal and NDP seat numbers.

    Our media is giving us the worst election coverage ever, ever since 2002 it has been steadily getting worse.

    I think for the benefit of our democracy we have to get angry at our media. They are in a constant race to try to pick the winner and “wrap” the current polling numbers around their stories. I wrote an article in the local paper in the 2006 election race; and it even got picked by Nanos research for their archivese. What the media does is take the polling numbers, pick an adjective, and then wrap all of their headlines about the particular parties, leaders or campaigns around it.

    In 2006, Martin was called “tired”, in 2008 Dion was called “beleagured”. The other parties got other adjectives that showed them in the polls.

    Also like you said, this whole big stupid idea that the NDP had a chance in hell of forming government being spewed by pundits and pollsters became a self-fulfilling prophecy that only benefited the Conservatives. The prospect of the NDP forming government was distant at best, impossible in reality. In effect the media flipped from being a “two-way race” between the Liberals and Conservatives to the Conservatives and NDP. I think that the media just likes a two way race better.

    We all need to step in and help out and rebuild our party. And write a letter to the editor about the crappy coverage we have seen thoughout the past few election campaigns. Reporters are supposed to cover the news, not make it. And why on earth do they consider reporting on the ad buys made by the various parties to be news? Isnt it common knowledge that during elections we will see election ads?

  2. I wrote two scathing articles on the media and CPC propaganda, and a canada.com editor refused to publish my opinions after soliciting what I thought was the most real and important issues of the campaign. I then wrote an article on nuclear and energy policy and he liked it, but I’m not sure it got published (yet?).

  3. As a westerner, I think the historic element in last night’s election isn’t the demise of the Liberal brand or the rise of the NDP, it’s that a majority government in this country can be won without Quebec. (Not that Quebec doesn’t matter, mind you)

    That is a huge, massive sea change in this country. The question for the Liberal party now is whether it can feasibly rebuild (which I hope) or whether it will merge with the NDP (which would be disastrous, I think)

    • Sean,
      Good point about the majority without winning Quebec, that’s one reason why the news last night was so shocking to me, I knew the CPC wouldn’t win much in Quebec. The flip in the NDP and Liberal numbers was the most unexpected result of last night, but if we look at trending fro the LPC, it’s not all that shocking really. People are tired of the Liberals, and I predict within 10 years they’ll tire of the Harper Conservatives too. If we still have a parliamentary democracy then, I expect the Conservatives will be kicked out (Kim Campbell, Duceppe, and Iggy style).

  4. It’ll be a park in Willowgrove in Saskatoon this Saturday. I’ll make sure my wife brings her camera. :-) I’ll be out there for at least an hour, maybe 2, depending on the weather.

    • Hi Mark,
      Enjoy your time outdoors, and thanks for honouring the agreement! I may clean up more around Regina in the coming week too in your honour.

  5. It’s days like these that I’m grateful to my RDS — Reward Deficiency Syndrome — a brain oddity that keeps me from feeling satisfaction at accomplishments. I’d be feeling just as crap if Layton had won, though intellectually I would recognize the situation to be much better.

    Anyway, Harper has himself a caucus that’s rabid on some issues that Canadians have already settled, like abortion. I’ll be watching with interest to see whether he loses his Reich wing or the public in general first. He can’t say the Opposition is stopping him now.

  6. Quite the election.

    With a Conservative majority, Harper may behave like an autocrat and ram through an ideological agenda, but I think it is about as likely that as he is no longer constantly in peril of being defeated so he may decide to loosen up on caucus discipline on all matters (except motions of confidence) instead. I honestly do not know what to make of the next four years, or how they will go.

    I am worried about how Harper will use his new power, but he may not be as bad as we have previously seen…

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