Wednesday, May 4, 2011

After shock

The election is over, the people of  Central Canada bought into the fear and gave Harper is majority. I am very sad and at a loss of words but others I read have summed up the situation well. 

CathiefromCanada gives a clear picture of what will happen next under Harper. She cites Warren Kinsella who talks about the fact that Harper will outlaw abortion,  same sex marriages, bring back the death penalty, apply mandatory sentencing and destroy the gun registry.

BC Mary cites  Chantal H├ębert who talks about the polarization of parliament

Harv Oberfeld over at Keeping it Real, talks about the fact that Jack Layton and the NDP actually have less power and that Harper will have free reign to do what he wants to do  including "likely deal more with building prisons, buying fighter jets …maybe even staying longer in Afghanistan than previously announced .. . tough on crime legislation, getting rid of the long gun registry, killing the Insight treatment program, getting rid of voter-financing subsidies, and even kicking the CBC around."

Scott Tribe over at Scott's Diatribes discusses the issues that the Liberals have to face as they try to figure out how to rebuild the party.

Over at A Creative Revolution, they say goodbye to Canada as we know it with a video

Over at Accidental Deliberations they talk about the aftermath and says "Now, Harper will have his majority - but only after the civil service has been thoroughly silenced and the latter two institutions made subject to five years of Harper appointments. Which raises the question of what can be done to keep Harper and his party from doubling down on the damage they've already done in a minority government. Fortunately, there's at least a modicum of good news on that front."
The good news is worth reading to help take the pain away a bit.
Bill Tieleman talks about the two big winners and the losers on his blog and also asks this question
"So, will Harper wisely moderate his party’s right-wing red meat demands and instead occupy the centre of the political spectrum?  


Or will he throw them steaks – like dismantling the CBC, privatized health care or slashing public services to pay for corporate tax cuts? Count on the long gun registry to die along with public funding for political parties and much more." 
I think we all know the answer to that question.

Over at Paying Attention Paul Willcocks  talks about the victory of Harper coming at the collapse of the Liberals and then goes on to talk about another Harper promise "Harper's majority means he will go ahead with his plan to end public financial support for political parties"

It is not a good time for progressive voters in Canada, but on the bright side:
  • We have four years in which to learn how to be more self reliant, as our safety nets vanishes
  • We will have time to think about the idea that we used to have rules and regulations in place that limited the harm companies could do to the environment
  • We will have time to think about how to fix  our infrastructure such as roads, sewers,  buildings when the federal funding dries up and we will can thank Mr. Harper for allowing us to see the benefits of less government.
  • As we put more people into prison, we will feel safer, and for those of us who like to play with guns, we will be able to buy more guns without worrying about the police coming knocking if we should use our guns in a playful fashion.
    • More prisons will mean more opportunity for smart business people to get into staffing and running the prisons because the Federal government will get out of that business as they did in the States.
  • As we watch our public health care vanish, those of us who are entrepreneurial will have the opportunity to invest in private health care facilities.
  • As the Conservatives mount their anti Layton campaign (which started one day after the election) we will have time to reflect on how wonderful it will be to have a one party system so we are not faced with difficult choices about who to vote for in the next election
  • As old age pensions do not keep up with the rate of inflation, myself and other seniors will have time to reflect on how we silly we were not to have taken steps to build our own pensions properly 
    • Seniors on low incomes will also learn to be thankful for the food banks, homeless shelters and soup kitchens. Those who are lucky enough to have shelter will have to learn how to make do with less so our budgeting skills will improve.
  • When abortion issue is raised by his base (as it will be), Harper may not have to put it to a vote to upset Canadians he may only have to  change a regulation or two in the Health Act so that hospitals, clinics and doctors who support abortion are not given funding as he did in funding foreign aid. 
  • Having control of the media, (at least in BC) means that Harper will protect us from having any conversations about pressing social issues that do not agree with his views. We will get the opportunity to feel good about having a Paternalistic government that keeps us from having controversial topics to discuss.
  • Today I listened to some of the Harper supporters talk about how statesman like he was in his remarks on election night and how this may signal a different man. I have to disagree, Harper is a vindictive, petty, arrogant man, but in public he may sound different, I suspect in private he is already plotting the takedown of the NDP and the destruction of our faith in government. He may be smart enough to not do the dirty work himself, but he will have hundreds of "yes" men and woman who will do the dirty work for him. This will give those of us who follow politics, an opportunity to see how media is the main stream media is manipulated and controlled by the extremen right wing in Canada.
As Monty Python  said at the end of the Life of Brian- Always Look On the Bright Side of Life



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