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Jay Currie

One Damn Thing After Another

6/09/2004

Make it stop....

The editorial board at the Toronto Star are not happy about how the election is turning out. They have an editorial up today which begins with this interesting proposition:
At the midway point in the campaign, voters are tempted to lash out at the governing Liberals, but afraid of what the Conservatives might do to the country. They're fed up with elected officials who don't keep their promises, but worried about replacing them with ones who don't share their values. Once again — as in so many past elections — they're looking for the least harmful option.
the star
Really? There is very little evidence that Canadians are worried about what the Conservatives will do to the country. And a lot of evidence that the reason for the anger is that Candians have been discovering what the Liberals have been doing to their country. As for sharing their values...most Canadians are not thieves, frauds and patronage junkies. Most work damn hard for their money and they value that money. To see it pissed away on boondoggles like the gun registry and stolen as in AdScam hits them right in their values.

More to the point: on the dreaded social issue front Canadians are, at best, split on issues like abortion, gay marriage and capital punishment. These are not beyond dispute.

The Star's solution is for the campaign to restart in the second half and it wants Canadians to:
Finally, voters have to ask themselves whether they're really as badly off as they feel. How many countries have as few urgent problems as Canada? How many people have as little to complain about as a patronage-tainted advertising program? How many nations have the luxury of debating what to do with their surplus?
This is the "don't worry, be happy" approach to politics which essentially asks people to ignore the corruption so long as they have little to complain about. Which would be great - but high taxes, long waiting lists for medical care, a feckless foreign policy and no clear direction for the country - all suggest Canadians have lots to complain about. But not in the Toronto Star.