Election diaries: postmortem

Well, ok, not really a postmortem. It’s an intramortem. It’s 10:13pm in Toronto and I’m watching Newsworld. The news is scary.

I really do believe this isn’t just a Conservative victory. I think this Conservative win to be a game changer. For all the reasons already described, Stephen Harper is an anti-democrat. I’m not so worried about a hidden agenda. His upfront agenda is frightening enough.

Two things that are driving me crazy tonight.

First, I remember why I was so pissed off at the NDP a couple of years ago. They brought down Paul Martin’s government and trashed a national daycare program, the Kelowna accords and other stuff. But what was most damaging is that they gave Harper a chance to look Prime Minsterial— always a dangerous event.

And tonight what do all the NDP spokespeople on Newsworld have to say? They are excited about their gains. They chortle over being the Opposition. But I have yet to see one of them decry the Conservative victory.

I know the NDP is a political party like the others. And of course they care most about their own fortunes. I understand this. But no regrets at all about the fact that almost all their wins in Ontario are from the Liberals and not the Conservatives? And their bounce in the polls has resulted in handing the Conservatives a majority.

Most of the pickups for the NDP are in Quebec. Those gains may easily prove to be illusory. They were for Brian Mulroney when he dallied with Quebec nationalism. If so, then there is no long term gain for the NDP or the Left in Canada.

But I am dismayed at how many seats were handed to the Conservatives because people refused to vote for one of the other anti-Harper candidates in ridings where their preferred choices were too far behind to have a chance but where the Conservatives just squeeked by.

Harper and the Conservatives have indeed proven themselves to be master strategists. They have taken the same popular vote from 2008 (perhaps even lower) and turned it into a massive win by cynically playing Canadian against Canadian in a campaign based on fear. But what is even more annoying and discouraging is the Left’s self righteousness that allows the Conservatives to form government even while they go to bed safe in their own self regard.

I’m disgusted by the Conservatives. I’m disgusted by the Left.

Maybe I’ll feel better tomorrow. But it’s hard to imagine families with children, students, gays, pregnant teenagers feeling any better in the morning.

To think that over 60% of Canadians have not managed to figure a way to stop this tiny little man, Stephen Harper.


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