A Visitors Map

Every once and a while I like to post where the visitors to my blog come from. This map represents the last 200 or so hits.

I some times wonder how they find me. There are lots of search engines out there but the main ones that point people my way are:
but at the end of the day, Google directs 94.7% of the traffic my way.

So, welcome and don't forget to leave a comment.


I Guess This Just Isn't Scilla Country

I used to live on the west end of the Island of Montreal. In fact I lived in the area three different time in my life. Once in my teens, later when I worked at CFCF television and again for about 10 years starting in the mid eighties. My mother still lives there so, I am back fairly often.

It is a lovely mix of old suburbia and historic villages established in the 1700's.

There isn't a nicer time than spring on the West Island so it was the memory of front lawns blue with scilla that prompted me head to the garden centre a few years ago to find some bulbs and plant them in my lawn here in Regina.

I am not quite sure what went wrong but instead of a subtle blue carpet I managed to produce three scraggly blue flowers. Perhaps I should try growing wheat.


The Blue Meanies are not Really a Majority

I think what will get under my skin over the next four years is that Stephen Harper will strut around saying that his government was supported by a majority of Canadians. It wasn't.

Figure it out.

  • There are over 34 million Canadians
  • 24 million of them are eligible to vote
  • Roughly 6 million Canadians voted for Harper's party. 
  • About 9 million of us voted for candidates who were not Conservatives. 
So, like it or not Stephen, only about 25% of eligible voters actually supported you. Some majority!

There are a couple of things you can do.
  1. Sign Fair Vote Canada's Declaration of Voter's Rights.
  2. Remind the Prime Minister of the facts and ask him to change the electoral system 
It will make you feel that you are doing something about our dismal political situation and hopefully you will begin to feel better about things.


Don't Blame me I Voted NDP

Well, much to our surprise, the sun still came up Wednesday morning but no question, the political landscape has shifted substantially. This will be an interesting four years.

On Tuesday night, Canadians probably made the dumbest political we have ever seen in Canada. Four years of that bully boy strutting around pretending he represents the interests of a majority of Canadians may be more than I can stomach.

Looking for silver linings, perhaps the best news is that my friend Mike Sullivan, an NDP candidate got elected in the York-South-Weston riding in Toronto. He is one of the good guys. No question. Way to go Mike.

I am going to take a break from political blogging for a while and try to catch up with several things on my plate that have been slipping past me. I am working on a photo project which I am scrambling to complete by later this week and I have to concentrate on  Folk Festival sponsorship a bit more than I have been.


Oh Canada!

Of all the commentary last night and in the news this morning I think my son Christopher said it best in two words. His post on Facebook says simply "Oh Canada"

That is a sigh, not a  reference to the National Anthem.

This may be a defining moment for Canada and I am not sure I will like the definition when Harper is done with us.  I don't much like it, but I accept it, as flawed as it might be.

I have spent more of my life fighting against the political direction taken by the Liberals that I have the Conservatives in their several forms but, I am not sure their demise will help Canada much. No question, they lost their way. Can they find their way back to the Pearson/Trudeau style of politics that served them well? I wonder.

I am buoyed by the great orange surge but disappointed that it didn't extend much past Quebec. What is it that the Quebecois get, that Western Canada doesn't?  Jack has his work cut out for him. To be honest I was looking forward to a positioning that would make a Liberal Democrat merger a powerhouse. I can't see it now. The Liberals will be sulking for months and months.

Here in Saskatchewan the voters returned the 13 Conservative MPs even though they have a reputation for being nothing more than Harper mouthpieces. Old red neck reformers who refused to attend all candidate's meetings and who are more like trained seals in Ottawa that they are representatives of the Saskatchewan people.

So what have we got? A strutting, arrogant, secretive Prime Minister with a majority government, who will claim to speak for a majority of Canadians, ignoring the fact that 60% of us didn't vote for Conservative Candidates. If anything screamed "Democratic Reform", surely that is it.

Oh Canada indeed. This will be a tough four years.

Fair Vote Canada Says, Canadians Cheated Again

Fair Vote Canada, Canada’s national citizens’ movement for voting reform released analysis of Tuesday’s federal election results showing that the outcome does not accurately reflect the way Canadians voted.

“The Conservative party increased their vote percentage by less than two points,” says Fair Vote Canada (FVC) President Bronwen Bruch, “but this allowed them to win 24 more seats than in 2008, when they were already over-represented. Stephen Harper calls this a ‘decisive endorsement’, but we call it a rip-off.”

At the time of writing, these were the actual seats won and leading for each party:

CON 167, NDP 102, LIB 34, BQ 4, GREEN 1

If the seats were won in proportion to the votes that were cast, the numbers would look like this:

CON 122, NDP 95, LIB 59, BQ 19, GREEN 13

According to these results, the Conservatives have won 54.22% of the seats with only 39.62% of the votes, one of the least legitimate majorities in Canadian history.

“This is a classic phony majority,” said Bruch, “and leaves us with a government that is completely unaccountable to Parliament. As long as they maintain rigid party discipline, nothing bad can happen to them for four years.”

The FVC analysis shows that the NDP, historically under-represented by Canada’s winner-take-all voting system, is now over-represented by seven seats, thanks to the “orange wave” that vaulted them into second place.

The Liberal Party, on the other hand, traditionally over-represented to the degree that they were regarded as Canada’s “natural governing party”, is now the chief victim of the voting system. While their vote percentage fell by less than 8%, they lost more than half their seats.

The Bloc Québècois, which has always previously been over-represented because their votes are concentrated in one region, has been decimated. Although their vote percentage has collapsed, they should still be entitled to 19 seats, but they are winning or leading in only four seats.

The Green Party is ecstatic to have finally won a single seat, but they actually received enough votes across the country to win 13 seats.

“Across the country,” added Fair Vote Canada Executive Director Wayne Smith, “vote splits between the Liberals and NDP allowed the Conservatives to steal seats. Once again, our antiquated voting system has given us the wrong government, a government that most of us voted against.

“It is truly time to change our voting system. If we want politics to be different, we need a vote that makes a difference.”


This Time I'm Working the Election

I have often worked on Election Day, driving people to polls or working as a candidate's representative or a scrutineer if you like.

This time I thought I'd give something else a try. Several weeks ago I applied on-line to Elections Canada saying I'd like to work for them. They hired me, I have been trained and Monday, will spend the whole day working as a poll clerk.

It should be fun working the election in a totally non partisan way for a change. It is all about process, enabling people to exercise their rights and making sure everything is run according to Hoyle.

None the less, even if I am out of partisan action for the day, I am still a political junkie so, as soon as those ballots are counted and the seals in place I will be racing home to eagerly watch the rest of the results come in.