Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Change, Change, Change

The most surprising development so far in this election campaign is the apparent Conservative reversal of fortunes in Quebec. How is that a left leaning, socially progressive society like Quebec could possibly consider a vote for Harper? I watch with amazement as successive polls show Harper downright surging in the province, possibly winning several seats. No one could have predicted this turnaround, it really is astounding.

However, this new reality isn't necessarily flattering to the Quebec voter. Yes, the hatred for the Liberals is palpable, but does that merit support for a party so at odds with the majority of Quebecers? Maybe, this circumstance is the best example out there of how alienated, disgusted and single minded the voter has become. Get the Liberals out, period, end of conversation. Forget about the ramifications or the dubious agendas, we just want change for changes sake.

This mindset is scary in the sense that it neglects to consider the state of the country. Most Canadians say the country is headed in the right direction, which is a shocking finding given the polls. Most Canadians agree with the Liberals on fiscal and social matters, yet this isn't translating into voter support. We are entering the voting booth with blood in our eyes, storming the bastille to overthrow the "culture of entitlement". I get the sentiment, it has merit, but I still wonder if two years from now we aren't lamenting our choice of passion over reason.

I pray for a minority, wherein the radical elements of the old Reform Party are neutered and the Liberals are given the chance to purge and re-tool. Then after a brief honeymoon, the moderate left re-emerges to topple the Tories and get back to a reasonable, progressive agenda. Maybe the next election we can actually have a campaign of substance, instead of simply an overriding movement for change, no matter how it manifests itself.

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