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The lesson of Canada’s election
Posted by: McQ on Saturday, January 28, 2006

One lesson is anti-American demagogury isn't enough to get you through an election, as Paul Martin found out:
ACCORDING TO his opponent, Canadian Conservative Party Leader Stephen Harper exposed "an agenda really drawn from the extreme right in the United States." He favored the Iraq war, opposed the Kyoto treaty on global warming, and is a social conservative to boot. He might just become — heaven forbid — "the most pro-American leader in the Western world." His victory would — O, Canada! — "put a smile on George W. Bush's face." Despite all those scary warnings, Mr. Harper and his party won Canada's election on Monday. That put an end to 12 years of increasingly incoherent and corrupt rule by the Liberal Party — as well as the cynical and irresponsible attempt of its leader, outgoing Prime Minister Paul Martin, to use anti-Americanism.

Mr. Martin becomes the second G-8 leader in four months to exit from office after discovering that anti-U.S. demagoguery is no longer enough to win an election. Gerhard Schroeder, the former German chancellor, also tried to rescue his political career last fall by parading his differences with Mr. Bush; the result was the victory of Angela Merkel, who has moved swiftly to repair relations with Washington. Interestingly, both Mr. Schroeder and Mr. Martin won previous campaigns by playing anti-American cards, in 2002 and 2004 respectively. While it's not clear that the level of ill feeling toward the United States or its president has changed much in Germany or Canada, it's obviously not the foremost concern of voters fed up with domestic mismanagement — or, perhaps, political venality.
Which brings us to the correlary: if you don't deliver on your promises and you mire you party in corruption and cripple it with ineffective government, no amount of anti-American demagoguery will save you.

And as the WaPo editorial points out, it seems rather self-defeating to purposely antagonize your biggest customer:
Mr. Harper is not as pro-American as the Liberal attack ads made out: He doesn't plan to send Canadian troops to Iraq and will certainly continue to press trade grievances with the Bush administration. But he has stated the sensible position that "we should obviously have good relations whenever possible with our closest ally and our biggest customer."

Whatever their feelings about Mr. Bush, most Canadians probably agree with that sentiment. Canada sells 85 percent of its exports to the United States and depends on it for security as well as prosperity — a fact that Mr. Martin opportunistically overlooked when he refused to join the U.S. missile defense program. His grandstanding merely gave Mr. Bush an excuse to ignore Canada's legitimate complaints about tariffs on softwood lumber and the impact of new border controls due to take effect this year.
For Martin and the Liberals, a hard but important lesson to learn. We'll see, with Canada's next election, whether they indeed learn it or, as with liberals in this country, they develop the believe that the message is essentially correct but that its presention was the primary problem.
 
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I’m hearing from Canadian sources that paper shredders are in short supply in the Capital district.

 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Which brings us to the correlary: if you don’t deliver on your promises and you mire you party in corruption and cripple it with ineffective government, no amount of anti-American demagoguery will save you.
Which is precisely why I predict the GOP won’t run on an anti-American platform in 2006.

 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
Here is what the Jerusalem Post had to say about Paul Martin:
Canada, as we have had cause to mention before in this column, is the only G-7 country to boast a surplus both in its current account and in its government budget over recent years.

The man primarily responsible for that was Paul Martin, who served as finance minister for the period from 1993, when the Liberals wrested power from the Conservatives, and who became prime minister only a couple of years ago.

In the interim, he oversaw the restoration of the country’s fiscal position and set the Canadian economy on a course of steady, stable growth.
You’re right about one thing, McQ. Canadians have much more in common with America than Paul Martin understood. After all, look at what they just did: They voted out the left-of-center party that restored the country’s fiscal position and replaced it with the conservative party. If they intend to follow the American model, we can expect that a few years down the road they will be deeply in debt to the Chinese.

 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
Which is precisely why I predict the GOP won’t run on an anti-American platform in 2006.
LOL!

I’m not sure if this is a serious attempt at humor or the fulfillment of the "stopped clock" maxim.

Good one MK.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Which is precisely why I predict the GOP won’t run on an anti-American platform in 2006.
That’s a great prediction. Mine is that the sun will rise tomorrow morning, sometime between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m. Oh, and I also predict that water will be wet.

I’d be wondering more if the Democrats were planning on running on an anti-American platform in 2006. That would be an interesting proposition to consider.
 
Written By: Wacky Hermit
URL: http://organicbabyfarm.blogspot.com
Which is precisely why I predict the GOP won’t run on an anti-American platform in 2006.

Pretty hard for them to do that when the Reid-Pelosi-Kennedy-Murtha wing has that particular niche sewn up :)
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
In the interim, he oversaw the restoration of the country’s fiscal position and set the Canadian economy on a course of steady, stable growth

Very easy to do when you totally ignore your security obligations, allow your military to crumble and rust away, etc.

In other words, it’s easy for little brother to be flush when someone is paying a lot of his freight...
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
Which brings us to the correlary: if you don’t deliver on your promises and you mire you party in corruption and cripple it with ineffective government, no amount of anti-American demagoguery will save you.
I was sorry to see that MK got there before me. Like the Canada Conservative Party and Hamas, I’m guessing the Democrats will also be the beneficiaries of a corrupt, ineffective opponent in forthcoming elections.

Like PJ O’Rourke said, Republicans are the party which says government doesn’t work, and then they get elected and prove it.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
Which is precisely why I predict the GOP won’t run on an anti-American platform in 2006.
I’m not sure if this is a serious attempt at humor or the fulfillment of the "stopped clock" maxim.
It’s a sure bet the Democrats will.
Indeed, look around, guys... they already ARE.
 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
I’m guessing the Democrats will also be the beneficiaries of a corrupt, ineffective opponent in forthcoming elections

And the Republicans will be the beneficiaries of a slightly less corrupt, ineffective, squabbling opponents in the forthcoming elections.

:)
 
Written By: Shark
URL: http://
Yes, MK, we know.
And of course the leftists like yourself in Canada are screaming.
SFSS Forum guest speaker, Dr. Marjorie Cohen, an SFU Professor of Political Science, talked about Paul Martin’s budget last Wednesday, calling it an "Unemployment Budget". "It is the first Budget since the 1930s that made no mention of job creation," said Cohen.

"It is a regressive, narrow and self-serving budget." said Cohen, "It will hurt Canadians — especially the poor." She noted that the drastic cuts will have a damaging ripple- effect that will be felt throughout the entire Canadian economy.

Hardest hit by the cuts will be those who are the least capable of protecting themselves, low wage "working poor" many of whom are women and single parents.

"Other Western Nations have not witnessed cuts this deep and drastic, nor is Canada’s deficit the worst when compared to other Western Nations," noted Cohen. "It is solution based purely on simple arithmetic. It clearly is not a logical economic solution with average Canadians in mind ... Martin’s Budget will only benefit the pocketbooks of [the] very, very rich."

Cohen went on to demonstrate how this budget is detrimental to Canadians, and how it will benefit only the extremely rich. Below are statistics cited by Cohen:

*This budget will be the end of Universal Programs in Canada such as Medicare and access to Higher Education.

*Three Quarters of Canada’s "National Debt" to foreign sources is held by Private Corporations — not by the Government as the media would have you believe.

*61,480 of Canada’s leading Corporations paid no Taxes at all last year. Instead they got tax credits.

*Banks recorded the largest profits ever recorded — $4 Billion.

*The Royal Bank recorded a 290 per cent increase in profits, paid less than one per cent in tax, and bankrolled a $300 million R&D tax credit for computerisation. This enormous R&D tax credit left a significant number of Canadians unemployed and searching for increasingly scarce jobs.

*The average profit recorded by 122 of Canada’s largest Corporations was 142 per cent which amounts to 18 billion in profits, yet they paid no taxes.

Cohen said that 15 years ago, Corporations shouldered approximately 25 per cent of the tax burden. Today, however, the majority of tax burden formally carried by the corporate sector has been shifted onto the shoulders of the average Canadian.

Cohen maintains that this is the true cause of the 1994/95 tax revolt — not because universal social programs are extravagant to maintain.

"The adverse of effects of Martin’s budget will not be felt until next year," said Cohen. This time-lag will help defuse impact of Martin’s budget when it does hit home, as voters have a tendency to forget.

Cohen was particularly worried about the "Block Funding" strategy used by the federal government. She sees it as a way for the federal government to offload their debt onto the provinces.

The Block Funding program has no mechanisms for accountability, said Cohen, as the provinces can use this block of funding anyway they feel fit. Cohen also predicts that the block funding program will be eliminated altogether in the not-so-distant future.

The economic scenario for Canada’s future is gloomy. Cohen feels that once social programs are dismantled, they are extremely hard to get back.

Further, as the federal debt load is unceremoniously dropped into the provinces’ lap, progressive social programs on a provincial scale cannot be implemented, especially in light of a "competitive global marketplace" where the "Canadian foreign debt", (three-quarters of which is held by highly profitable private corporations) drags down the Canadian economy.
I mean, I think the guy got pushed into doing the job right, and left to his own devices would have done what liberals usually do... spend themselves into oblivion... but on the whole, he did better than the Democrats down here have done.

But given the scope of complaints from the left up there, most of which sounds like the story I’ve posted, I’m forced to ask.... Do you really know who it is you’re defending, MK? Or, are you, as I think, allowing your jerking knee to lead you around again?

And remember before you answer, I live in Rochester. That places me about 60 miles off the border, and within a radio earshot of all of eastern Canada, Closing the capital district. I know what transpires north of the border.







 
Written By: Bithead
URL: http://bitheads.blogspot.com
Like PJ O’Rourke said, Republicans are the party which says government doesn’t work, and then they get elected and prove it.

You gotta like PJ. He’s the type of guy who could tell you a joke where your the punch line and you’ll laugh anyway.

The Republicans have certainly proved it to the First Lady,
Even Laura Bush raised ire during a visit to the area when she had this to say to local reporters about governmental relief: "I know it’s very, very slow. That’s how government works."
Like the Canada Conservative Party and Hamas, I’m guessing the Democrats will also be the beneficiaries of a corrupt, ineffective opponent in forthcoming elections.

Well, guess all you want. But I wouldn’t bet on it.

It seems that the Republicans always have an ace in the hole come election time.
Or better put, a Queen of Hearts,
"We will address the definition of marriage sometime over the course of this year," Frist said at a news conference on the Republican agenda. A House GOP leadership aide said the House also is likely to take up the gay-marriage ban this year.
Religious groups such as the Family Research Council have been urging Republican congressional leaders to hold votes this year to put lawmakers on record on their positions about same-sex marriage heading into the 2006 elections. In 2004, the last time the House and Senate voted on the matter, it was rejected in both chambers.
The Senate’s third-ranking Republican, Rick Santorum (Pa.), said it is vital for the matter to get a debate in the Senate.
Well thank you, Mr. Santorum. It’s vital we get that to the front burner in 2006, isn’t it? Because we all know that debate about gay marriage becomes vital during even numbered years, and mysteriously vanishes during odd numbered years.
Forget about skyrocketing budget deficits, forget about rampant spending for a moment, … we’ll deal with those in good time. First, I need you to define what my wife and I have for us. You will!?! Gee thanks…, how thoughtful.
Give Santorum credit though, at least he has the troops in his thoughts,
Santorum: "And yet we have brave men and women who are willing to step forward because they know what’s at stake. They’re willing to sacrifice their lives for this great country. What I’m asking all of you tonight is not to put on a uniform. Put on a bumper sticker. Is it that much to ask? Is it that much to ask to step up and serve your country?"
Really, that’s all I have to do to support the troops??? Put a bumper sticker reading “I support the troops” on my tailgate??? All this time, and I...
Wait a minute, I’ll be right back…………………..
…………………There, Done. And it conveniently covered my, “RICK THE DICK” sticker from before.
Hold a sec…, you don’t suppose he meant a sticker supporting him for reelection, do you?
Last week Rick Santorum addressed the Centre County Republican Party and asked them to support him. During the course of his speech Rick actually had the gall to compare putting a Santorum bumper sticker on your car to serving your country in Iraq or Afghanistan.
Damn it!! Now I’m gunna have to get a new “RICK THE DICK” sticker.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Like the Canada Conservative Party and Hamas, I’m guessing the Democrats will also be the beneficiaries of a corrupt, ineffective opponent in forthcoming elections.

Hard to picture something more corrupt and ineffective than the Democrats.
 
Written By: Don
URL: http://
Man, you Americans just don’t get it. Conservatives north and south of the borderare all hooting about this win and what it means, but the secret us Canucks are privy to is that this election was not, in any way, a win for the Conservative Party. I’ve explained why here.
 
Written By: Chris
URL: http://www.smallflightlessbird.blogspot.com

 
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