Sunday, February 22, 2015

There's Reason To Be Apathetic


Robin Sears writes that two recent incidents speak volumes about why Canadian voters are apathetic:

What is a first-time potential voter to make of the nonsense from Premier Kathleen Wynne that her number 2 employee is both her taxpayer-paid deputy chief of staff and her party’s campaign director? Is this on alternate days or partisan until noon but public employee after lunch?
Such an absurd insult to common sense might be seen as a good reason not to vote.

And, of course, there is the case of Eve Adams:

Then there is the case of the weather vane MP and her gormless new political love. Imagine a hockey player whose agent is secretly negotiating to move her to a new team, swearing all the while no such plans were afoot. She plays against her “about-to-be” team until the night before the announcement of her switch, trash-talking them to the end! And what would we think of her new coach sappily smiling beside her and claiming he “had always respected her, was delighted . . . blah blah.” This would not pass a five-year-old’s ethics or credulity test.

The Harperites have made this kind of politics commonplace. They have left us a swamp that will have to be drained:

Yes, Stephen Harper skilfully employs religious prejudice, national security angst, angry regional tensions, and even our deference to authority to serve his partisan interests, daily. Yes, there will be a lot of cleaning up to do after the lost decade of Harperism: rebuilding trust in government, morale in the public service, and Canada’s standing in the world, among a much longer list of damage to be repaired.

But Sears asks an important question -- a question our party leaders refuse to answer:

But why would anyone competing for that cleanup role think that smearing themselves in the same political mud was a good idea? Why would a premier chosen in part for her pledge to clean up the stench that surrounded the sad closing months of the McGuinty premier’s office allow herself to squander her reputation for integrity so carelessly?

Voters want good government. Our leaders want victory. The gap between our leaders and we the people is the reason 40% of us stayed home in the last federal election.


Lorne said...

The cynic, of course, would argue that low voter turnout is exactly what our politicians want, Owen. The narrowcasting of policy, perfected under the current regime, will not necessarily go away when Harper is vanquished. For example, while Trudeau can talk all he wants about renewing politics, his backing of Bill C-51, likely due to the polls supporting it, suggests his priorities are elsewhere. Elizabeth May seems to be the only leader with consistency and true integrity.

Owen Gray said...

I agree, Lorne. May seems to be the only leader who stands for more than victory. Unfortunately, in my riding, she and her party don't stand a chance.

thwap said...

They have some bizarre little community all their own. That can only explain the tears at the death of Jim Flaherty. The hugs after the gunman scare on Parliament Hill. The standing ovation for the disgraceful John Baird.

Something makes them incapable of seeing themselves the way others see them.

Then, there's the total lack of accountability in this country and this province for elite malfeasance.

Apathy isn't the answer. Fighting to make things better should be.

Owen Gray said...

Agreed, thwap. We should have long ago declared with Howard Beale that we're mad as hell and we're not going to take it any more.

Rural said...

And that swamp to be drained is full of alligators and the few boats left all are full of holes, Owen!

Owen Gray said...

Remember the tag line when Jaws came out, Rural? -- "Don't Go Near The Water."

Steve said...

I am going to stanchly defend Trudeau. Eve Admams IMHO is a better Liberal Candidate in that riding than the former liberal who held it. DT may be a slimeball but now he is our slimeball and we got him for a bag of makeup. Harper proves slimeball works, and at the very least if you wan to defend against it, call an expert.

This Wynee bribery scandal is also B.S.
This stuff is done everyday. There was no bribery. Wynee did not need his consent to push him aside. All she was doing was wrapping the medicinein a sugar pill.

I consider the Sudbury MPP and the Eglington East MPP to be the villians in these senarios. We are at war with a deadly enemy you dont fight queensbury rules and win anymore. (See Rob Ford)

Gyor said...

Vote NDP, Mulcair has tons of integrity.

lungta said...

whatever the narrative of a candidates election platform
it is subject to radical change with change of circumstances
99 times out of 100
the change of circumstance
is being elected
in a democracy we would vote on laws
in our system we elevate the best advertised meatsack to retirement
it is always headline news when a mp breaks rank and doesn't vote as they are told
the first 50 years of my life
were PTSS, 20 years of recovery and single dad on a string
no time for newspapers or politics
i cannot express the depth of my sense of betrayal when i started to follow politics
i had faith that they were the best
well educated with vast experience
out to benefit canadians
and the i experienced this vapid landscape of fools unable to be guided by anything else than knee-jerk self-serving childishness
currently you can make legitimate arguments
that all three "leaders" have no interest in canada or prosperity for the canadian people
the 40% that recoil from this cess-pool by recognition
and the other possible 50% who dip in for 1/2 an hour every four years
may be on the right track for a happy life
and who can blame them

Owen Gray said...

Inspiring leadership is rare, lungta. If we're lucky, it appears every two generations.

In between, we live in a desert.

Owen Gray said...

On Bill C-51, he and Elizabeth May -- and four ex-prime ministers -- are the only ones offering any push back to Bill C-51, Gyor.

Owen Gray said...

That may be, Steve. The problem is that all of this contributes to voter cynicism and -- in the end -- we wind up with a crisis of legitimacy.

Steve said...

political legitimacy is an oxy moron. Its a unicorn. There is no best practices goverment. The closest are in China and Singapore, effective yes, legitmate, now thats a great question?

Owen Gray said...

Unfortunately, that's become a truism, Steve. All dictatorships are illegitimate. And that seems to be the direction of things.

Anonymous said...

@ Owen now that Mr Tantrum Harper is going to get his bill C-51 'The Anti Terrorist Bill' which unfortunately is more for the perverse purpose of eliminating opposition to his "supreme powers" over Canada and Canadians.

The national anthem has changed. It used to go like this as we all know "Oh Canada we stand on guard for thee..."

Now it goes something like akin to this, are you ready?

"Oh Canada we stand on guard AGAINST the corrupt Harper-con government thee..."

Mogs Moglio

[I changed computers and lost my passwords so I have to post as an anon for a while but it is me Mogs]

Owen Gray said...

We should have guarded against him long ago, Mogs. Once you let the bed bugs in, they're hard to get rid of.

mogs moglio said...

Good point Owen...