The federal election in hindsight

Political Point of View

“Who’s afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?” — Children’s ditty

Do you remember that cheesy horse race game from the arcade where you had to wobble a handle to get your particular steed to go faster, but all that really went on was the little pony herky-jerked along at its own pace until finally one of the things crossed the finish line in victory? Our recent federal election seemed no different. No matter which discussion took place, whatever issue rose up, or whoever said what didn’t matter—the race went on by itself. It was even worth the $10 each Canadian paid for this exercise in its sheer entertainment value on election night. The NHL playoffs should be this exciting.

The mainstream media is all agog at the prospect of the NDP forming Her Majesty’s Official Opposition for the first time, but the real news for those on the left is that being the opposition in a Conservative majority government actually reduces their clout. No matter how long they hold their breath and fear-monger about some mysterious right-wing agenda led by the supposedly scary Stephen Harper, the plain fact is that their parliamentary numbers don’t add up. Jack Layton will need to come to his senses, ditch most of the pie-in-the-sky policy goals of his party and get set to deal with the adult world of helping to keep one of the more sensible countries in the world going pretty well the way it’s been going.

This, of course, will drive the socialist policy wonks bonkers. Rather than sensibly undertake genuine bipartisanship for the good of most Canadians who voted for these two parties, the Nutty Democratic Party will soon fracture, as it always does into a suicidal internal debate between the social and the labour wings. A unionized oil sand worker making $100,000 a year in the Northern Alberta muskeg isn’t likely all that interested in worrying about the homeless issue in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver and will wonder why his party is so worked up about it too.

Having the treasonous Bloc Quebecois and the lacklustre Liberals go down hard is finally some just dessert for the vacuousness of their platforms, ineptness of their campaign managers and plain lack of charisma of their leaders. These guys don’t belong in the big league.

Who knew that in a supposed time of war, the gloves are off; we’ll play hardball if we want to win, much like the Tories did when they went after Ignatieff directly with those attack ads.

If you’re depressed after reading all this political stuff, don’t be; just think what a fabulous wedding that was over at Westminster.

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