November 11, 2012

Not a Bad Week

My business paid its bills for the month in less than two days;
Eliminated one supplier for bad service and picked up another who has promised to be better;
A long established locksmith handed me a lock he wasn't able to fix, and I fixed it despite never having worked on its like before;
The Significant Other had me drive her in to work yesterday and today, letting me feel all butch and manly;
Ended an argument with a friend;
Have my brother coming out from Toronto, so I'll see him for the first time in a couple years;
...And had a perfectly lovely woman a decade my junior call me "really cool".

Seriously, it's been an excellent week.

And something else... something... something...  Oh, yeah!  Schadenfreude.

The amazing thing is how many Republicans and their most strident supporters were utterly convinced of their chances for victory, some going so far as to predict a landslide for Romney.  No, really.

Still others are performing a post-party analysis (as they will) and deciding that the answer isn't that perhaps the policies themselves are out of step with what the population was telling them with their ballots, but that the way they delivered the message of what those policies were was wrong.  Or at most, misunderstood.

Which leaves them, in short, clueless.  Having Charles Krauthammer constantly raise the image of an idealized Ronald Reagan will do them no favours, because he wouldn't have even made it out of the leadership campaign where red meat and dog whistles are the rule of the day.  Good god, every crackpot and lunatic the GOP could muster actually led in polling at one point or another!


Multiple divorcee and philanderer Newt Gingrich;
Rick "We'll Never Have The Smart People" Santorum;
Herman Cain, who has difficulty with more than three pages or one number;
Avowed Ayn Randian Ron Paul running to lead a government to stop government;
Michelle Bachman, who provides living proof gays can marry;
And The Adorable Idiot Rick Perry.

Those were the options, and all of them had a turn on top of the Republican leadership campaign.  (Okay, sure, Jon Huntsman was in there somewhere, but no one cared.)  These were the people who could have been the standard bearer for one of the two major parties in the US.  And there are people who think the biggest problem the Republicans have is the way their message gets across.

To misquote a stolen quote: It's the policies, stupid!

Eric Garland has written out a fine reply for them.  He's not exactly me (I don't have kids) but he's close enough for an American.  Which brings us back to this side of the border.

Two states just voted in favour of legalization of marijuana.  Repeat: legalization, not decriminalization.  More than a funny side note for newscasters trying to be "cool", it could have a very real impact on the economy of BC, what with pot being one of the provinces biggest crops.  Will the fact that prohibition is ending in Washington state mean growers here will see that market dry (eye)* up as growers south of the border suddenly become part of the mainstream?

And a second question will be to ask if the government here will learn from that election: with Harper's government (as they insist on calling it) passing new "tough on crime" legislation last year and the continued growth of the Canadian prison population leading to BC building another prison in the Okanagan, will the Conservatives continue a policy of prohibition despite its clear failure?  The consequences were so obvious to people in at least two states that they decided to give up on it completely; whereas here in "liberal" Canada we are beholden to the terrified majority in the ruling party, who themselves only managed 40% of the popular vote.

Meaning anywhere from 20 to 35% of the population is dictating what direction the country will be going in, so long as the political right only has one party to choose and the political left has four.  For now, at least.

The crux of it is whether the Conservative Party is going to look at the mood in the US, which returned the Democrats to power with a huge margin (332 votes to 206), and decide to inch towards the centre to fend off any resurgent Liberals; or will they continue to rely on that split on the left, yielding the middle and hoping that the surge in NDP votes will be a one time thing?

Pushing through massive and utterly undemocratic omnibus bills is a tough habit to break, and given the attack ads that are already running three years before an election, I'm inclined to go with the latter.

Stay tuned!



posted by Thursday at 11:37 pm


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