January 06, 2006
Canadian Tories Gaining Ground In Latest Polls
With the excruciatingly steady drip of stories linking Canada's Liberal Party with scandal after scandal, the Conservative Party for the first time is polling ahead as the country heads closer to Parliamentary elections later this month
Captain Ed highlights the latest investigation into the Liberal party focusing on abuse of government funds for personal purposes. Now Canada is by and large a Left-leaning culture, with a serious addiction to the nanny-State. But it looks like a plurality of voters are getting fed up enough with the corruption to give the Tories an opportunity to form a minority government in the next Parliament.
What does this mean for the U.S.? Nothing really. We might be on the receiving end of less hostility and criticism over the war in Iraq. But the idea that Canada will become a more cooperative ally in the Global War On Terror just because the Conservative Party is kinda-sorta in charge of the government is unrealistic.
It'll be interesting, however, to see if the Canadian Left becomes as unhinged as the American Left when they're no longer in power.
UPDATE: Bloggers having an affect on the campaigning:
From the wackiest edges of the left and right, and every political shade in between, it's difficult to estimate the number of Canadian political blogs in existence. But when you Google the three words blogs, politics and Canada, more than six million entries come up.
Bloggers range from profane idiots to bright and incisive thinkers whose research skills, analysis and intellect leave many in journalism and academia looking pretty frail by comparison.
Heh. Guess you can put me closer to the "profane idiot" end of that spectrum. But Captain's Quarters
, which has been covering these scandals and the subsequent call for new elections like white on rice, deservedly belongs at the other end with the "research skills, analysis and intellect" contingency.
Posted by: Gary at
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I think you're a bit off on your analysis in a couple of places. Although Canadian conservatives are a bit further to the left than American conservatives (well, in some's opinion; I am not so sure), keep in mind that there are things in their society that are a given. A great deal of Conservatives there think like American conservatives in terms of the size of government, taxation, and the nanny-state. The Leader of the Conservative Party has even said he wants to reduce their tax burden to below the levels they are in the United States. That hardly sounds left-leaning to me. As for the war on terror, Stephen Harper, the Conservative Leader, has said that he would not send troops to Iraq. However, Canada has military in Afghanistan, and he would maintain that. Further, he wants to undertake some changes to the Canadian immigration system, which would be very helpful to the States. He would never- and should not be, as the leader of Canada- a lapdog for the US, but I do believe he would make more of an effort to improve relations between our nations and be more of an ally.
Additionally, a minority government doesn't equate to being "kinda-sorta in charge." They would be completely in charge, but their term of power could be cut short very easily.
Posted by: Jess at January 06, 2006 02:27 PM (4sXv9)
Points well taken. I admit I am brushing with a broad stroke here but until I see evidence of popular support among Canadian citizens for lower taxation, more free-market oriented economic policies and smaller government I'm going to have to remain skeptical. My own opinion (and it's only my own) is that without the corruption scandals, the Tories wouldn't stand a chance in a Parliamentary election. They're the beneficiaries of a "throw the bums out" movement.
Correct my if I'm wrong, but don't minority governments have to rely on coalitions with other smaller parties such as the Bloc Quebecois to get anything done? Any agenda they have is subject to compromise.
The U.S. doesn't need a "lap dog", it needs an ally that at least publicly recognizes that the threat of terrorism is intricately linked with states that fund and harbor them - just as Afghanistan did and just as Iraq did. Don't want to send troops? Fair enough, but some other gesture of solidarity would send a message to the terrorists that the U.S. isn't all alone out here.
Except for Britain and many Eastern European nations, everybody seems to prefer to bury their heads in the sand and not make waves, lest they make themselves a target. Of course, if that's the attitude of the majority of their populations you can't be surprised when the governments mirror this philosophy.
Posted by: Gary at January 06, 2006 03:15 PM (QoxB+)
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