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.

Ignatieff Photo Fun

We can’t let Rick Mercer’s Report have all of the photo captioning fun.
The Leader Post kindly provides these first two photos of Michael Ignateiff in Regina

Ignatieff is left handed!

OK kids I get it now, but how do we fix the structural deficit?

Liberals in Regina
-Kissing babies is a time honoured politicians’ tradition

Liberals in Regina
-Michael has a larger head than I do, how’s that possible!?

Attack Ads Don’t Work Because You’re Smart?

If attack ads don’t work, then why have I heard them repeated to me by ordinary Canadians even though the ads contain fabrications and distortions that a child should be able to see through when it is explained to them?

Why is the “coalition” a “threat” or a “coup”? Why is Ignatieff not “coming back for you”? Why are the Greens a “one issue” party?

Because they’re not! Period. Each of those is an untruth (a lie) paid for sometimes with the help of your tax money (in the form of tax rebates to citizen donors, or 10%ers in the mail), and often as the result of money that should not be allowed to shape political thought in a democracy. And each I’ve heard ordinary Canadians say as if they are facts. When lies are accepted as facts, democracy dies a bit more, and that’s not my claim — it’s backed by history.

There are too many fooled people in Canada, and bad people are poised to reap the rewards of the misinformation they’ve sown into the brains of the unwitting. The question is, are Canadians going to be annoyed enough by the attack parties to do something about it before their freedom of thought is replaced by freepdom of thought?

Canadians stopped allowing cigarette advertising because we admitted it was killing people. The same realization needs to spread about political advertising that contains lies and kills our democracy. When commoners lose their ability to peacefully influence the political system in Canada, we know that people will die (rebellions and revolutions are never without casualties, and they do happen even in Canada too, sadly).

The French Debate

Sweet Tabernacle Choir, it’s the French debate tonight, and the increasingly worthless CBC isn’t broadcasting it for people without cable if you want an English translation. So I either have to scrape by with my cereal box french capabilities, or find someone with cable to watch it on NewsNet or some station.

The elephant in the room at the English debate last night was that Elizabeth May wasn’t there. Michael Moore, an American, even noticed something was strange. If an American notices that someone is missing from a CANADIAN political program, you know it’s a big deal. Jack Layton, the hypocrite, tried to score points by plugging Proportional Representation and that the Greens had no seats as a result of us not having a fair electoral system. He’s a hypocrite because he had the power to put May into the debates, and didn’t use it against the Broadcast Consortium like in ’08 when he was shamed into doing that.

If we had more debates, it’d almost be okay that May wasn’t in the one debate, because she’d get a turn with the four hoarse men who like to master debate alone.

Crime in our political offices is increasing, they are part of the unreported crimes the Conservatives are aware of, but no one else is yet.

Merci, I’m ici all nuit.

Bonjour Canada, je n’pas tres bien! Au Revoir!

Debate Tuesday

The Canadian election campaign enters a significant day, both on what’s happened, and what isn’t. The Broadcast Consortium, as I write this on Monday night, appears not to be backing down from its anti-democratic stance of not including the Green Party in the televised leaders debate. Real journalists are working to provide coverage of Elizabeth May’s responses to questions raised in the debates on CBC, CTV, Global and elsewhere, but it’s a poor substitute for a couple of the larger party leaders to throw their influence around to right this wrong. That leads me and many others to realize that if a hockey game can move a debate due to a request from the Bloc, then politicians are actually calling the shots, not the Broadcast Consortium. The media should not be bending to political will, they should be fair from the get go and not allow manipulation, but since they are allowing it, it’s also the fault of Layton, Harper, Ignatieff, and Duceppe that they failed to actually put May into the debates for the sake of our democracy.

I thought everyone in the media already knew about the wasteful spending in Tony Clement’s riding (Larry Smith sure did), under the guise of G8 sprucing-up. But there’s nothing like a leaked auditor’s report to generate some re-news. And it has the Conservatives on the defensive, going so far as to lie about having lied to Parliament regarding the G8/G20 expenses. The Harper Government really knew no bounds as to how much it could act in contempt of Parliament. If they were said to be found of “contempt of court”, maybe voters ears would perk up a little more, never mind that the former is more serious.

The leader of the Pirate Party of Canada explains why young people don’t vote that much. It certainly doesn’t help when a party that interests young people primarily, gets nearly no media coverage.
More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters
-There are exceptions to the “young people” support rule I just made up.

There were about 20 people at the More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters protest that I organized for Monday.
More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters
There were lots of honks of support, with only a couple birds and a few frowny faces among the hundreds of people that passed by in their cars and on their bikes and sneakers. A camera from CBC came out, then a reporter with a notepad that talked with us only a few minutes and didn’t ask for names (but did ask if some protesters were employed), and asked some really basic questions, and wasn’t prepared to ask followup questions to the information we provided. She ran away back inside, presumably to meet a deadline. Costa (news anchor) came out after the news had aired, and mentioned we got a 30 second spot. We replied that the CBC Ombudsman found that CBC wasn’t fulfilling its obligations as the public broadcaster, and I hoped that the news would mention to voters how they can hear Elizabeth May respond to the debate if she’s not included. Sadly other media didn’t show up to make fun of CBC being mocked.

More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters

Debate Protest

Democracy is hard work, but who says it can’t be fun? I was tossing around the idea of picketing a Consortium station, to protest the exclusion of the Greens (and other registered parties) from televised leaders debates. I’ve talked myself into it, so there will be at the least me outside CBC Regina sometime in the coming week, protesting their anti-democratic televised debate format. There are protests across Canada listed on the Green Party website. I hope to get my protest listed there soon.

Harper and Ignatieff refuse to debate Elizabeth May

If you’re not near a TV station to come out for an hour with a sign, and display your displeasure with the media being hijacked to protect the established political parties, then write a letter to the editor of your local paper. This excellent letter was published in Saskatoon.

I asked Ralph Goodale on Tuesday to tell Ignatieff that he should challenge Elizabeth May to a debate too, since Harper is too chicken to debate him. He said he’d ask. I also said that Ignatieff’s token support for saying that he wants May in the debate is meaningless without real action against the Consortium by threatening to boycott it until fairness is restored and May is given a seat again like the Greens were in 2008.

Some reasons I feel it’s important to protest the debate scandal that popped up again like it did last campaign:

@JohnCollison: Broadcasting Cartel protects Incumbent Parties from competition who in turn protect broadcasters from competition

And there are some blinkered progressive Twitterers that are so desperate for any advantage by leaving promotion of the Green platform out of national TV coverage, that they are trying to justify the Consortium’s ridiculous excuse that a judge swallowed today: May should have sued the Broadcast Consortium before the campaign, after being included in the 2008 election for inclusion in all future debates. Somehow these people have time machines and knew that the Consortium would go back on past-practice and move the goal posts when it again looked like May and the Greens were going to score a winning kick.


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More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters

Harper and Ignatieff refuse to debate Elizabeth May
Free image from two free images. Stephen Harper to the Liberal crested rooster’s right wing.

There is a he-said-chicken-said debate on Twitter right now about who is backing down from Ignatieff’s and Harper’s One On One debate challenges. In my view, they are both of the feathered species, because they’ve both folded to the Broadcast Consortium who says that Elizabeth May can’t debate against them, even though the Green Party was in the 2008 debates, and gets tax money because they got almost 1 million votes last election too.

I’ve been asking people to share this quote: “More Debates, Not Fewer Debaters”, since it’s one that almost everyone can agree on. The thing is, support seems to break down when some partisan people try to reconcile it with their stance on televised leaders debates.

I want chickens in my backyard, not in the House of Commons.

I want the media to grow a spine, and limit coverage of the Harper campaign if he limits questions reporters can ask. This isn’t China or Russia, a journalist can ask however many questions a politician has time for. If they don’t make time, then citizens should take note, and move their vote. Spend the time covering serious parties and candidates that will answer questions as if this is still a democracy!

I leave you to ponder this: We have an election now because @pmharper was in CONTEMPT of Parliament for refusing to answer questions. He’s still doing it! If Canada is to remain a democracy, contemptible politicians who refuse our questions (because they are lying and hiding) must be punished at the polls.
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