Sometimes You Have to Wonder

I have to say that the Canadian electorate, when it comes to accessing political systems, parties and leaders are one of the most screwed up groups of people in the world.
First let me say that our great fear of change allows us to be lead around by the nose by politicians who work their butts off seeking that magic 40% or so voter support. Reach that number and a majority government is almost guaranteed. 
Doesn’t that sound really dumb?
Yet, try to talk about Proportional Representation and most Canadian’s eyes glaze over. This seemingly bright nation can’t seem to figure it out. Our first past the post system is screwing us.
I was reading the results of a very recent Angus Reid poll yesterday and I confess that I came away shaking my head.
If you look at Canadian’s voting intention 34% would vote for the Harper Conservatives, 26% would support the Liberals lead by Michael Ignatieff and 18% would support the NDP.
Ok, I guess we could easily come to the conclusion that Canadians like Harper and his bunch.  
Not so fast though.  Canadian were asked to select up to six words or expressions from a list, that best described the party leaders.
  • When it came to Stephen Harper the five words chosen most often were secretive, arrogant, dishonest, out of touch and uncaring. Only 2% thought he was exciting.
  • The NDP’s Jack Layton in contrast was described as intelligent, down to earth, honest, compassionate and open.
What do you think? A kind of collective schizophrenia? Go figure.
Surprisingly, the divisive debate over the long gun registry, supported by about two thirds of Canadians seems to have done little to boost support for the Liberals nor the NDP nor did it hurt Harper.
Encouragingly, the Green Party moved into double digits nationally for the first time at 11%. Interestingly in British Columbia the Greens very nearly surpassed the Liberals. Higher than the Bloc nationally but our voting system will guarantee a large number of Bloc seats and the Greens will continue to struggle to elect anyone.  
In Saskatchewan where citizens seem to like getting screwed over, support is still high for Harper and his bunch of loyal, but not too bright foot soldiers.
Very few people think we will or should have an election in the fall so in the meantime Harper and his gang will carry on dismantling our country, the Liberals will continue to gaze at their belly buttons and wonder how they ever were so dumb to pick Iggy over Bob Rae, Gilles Duceppe, the avowed separatist and perhaps the best politician of the lot, will continue to build up is Canadian Federal Government pension and Jack Layton will dream about being Prime Minister and prepare for his last election as leader.

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