Posts tagged promises
Election 41 is over now and we got pretty much what I expected, a majority Conservative Party government. Was it the right decision by Canadians? I think so but only the next 4 years will actually tell whether or not we made that right decision.
The biggest surprises of the election? The Liberal Party being soundly beaten by the NDP as the opposition party by a tune of 34 seats to 102 seats. To me it shows how much Michael Ignatieff was disliked as the party leader and his candidates paid the price. Even worse for them was the NDP admitting they would never be able to pay for all their promises yet they were still able to dominate the Liberals. The fact that the people in Ignatieff’s home riding of Etobicoke—Lakeshore didn’t elect them as their MP is proof of the dislike of the party leader. The day after the election he resigned as party leader. I guess he can head back to Harvard to teach again.
The next surprise was the Bloc Québécois dropping from 49 seats down to 4. This clearly shows that the people of La Belle Province want to be part of this great country of Canada. Surprising too was that it was the NDP that picked up the seats in the province and not the Conservatives or Liberals. Totally amazing! Like Michael Ignatieff, Gilles Duceppe was also beaten in his home riding of Laurier–Sainte-Marie. The people spoke and he too resigned as party leader following the election.
Some will say that Elizabeth May winning a first ever seat for the Green Party was a surprise. I had expected this all along. Yes, she beat a Conservative Cabinet Minister but she ran a good race and the Green Party had been close before. It is always good to have a major party leader represent your riding. I guess the broadcasters will have to come up with another reason to exclude her from the next debate.
So what do I expect from the new majority government? I do expect much of what we have seen from Stephen Harper the last couple of years. We will get arrogance for sure. But we will also get a stable economy, an economy that has been one of the strongest in the world. There will also be some promises broken but many of those were made in the prospect or garnering votes that never materialized. I don’t expect the election promise of $150 million to build the year round road from Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk to be kept because the riding didn’t elect the conservative candidate Sandy Lee. You scratch my back and I will scratch yours. This type of promise breaking will happen all over the country wherever this has happened.
This type of thing happens all the time and you live with it. People will be up in arms over the broken promises but if you want what you are promised you need to elect those who make the promises and form the government. Hopefully we as Canadians made the right decision for Canada and we become and even stronger country with an even stronger economy. I guess the next 4 years will tell.
- The untold story of the 2011 election: Chapter 5 (macleans.ca)
- No more talk of NDP-Liberal merger: Broadbent (cbc.ca)
- Big names in Canadian politics who lost their election races (theglobeandmail.com)
- The two-day NDP surge that sank the Liberals (theglobeandmail.com)
We are at the point of the election campaign that I love. The buying of votes. I am sure that the political parties will sway some votes with their promises of this and that but the funny thing that many people don’t understand is that their are costs to these promises and the promises are veiled.
What I am talking about are mainly the regional promises that are made. Not the ones that affect all Canadians like increasing payments to healthcare or the children’s daycare and nutrition initiatives. They are regional promises for a reason.
People need to think of the cost of promises and ask where the money is going to come from. Here are some of the examples of what I am talking about.
The Conservative Party and Stephen Harper has pledged $150 million to build the all-year land road from Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk. It is a fantastic plan and something that would help the people of the region. But where is the money going to come from to pay for this? The veiled part of this promise; if the Conservatives form the government and Sandy Lee is not the MP for the Western Arctic, do you really think that the Conservatives will still go ahead with giving the region the money? Of course not. If you don’t vote for our candidate and they don’t win then you didn’t help us so we don’t have to help you. Simple as that.
The Liberal Party and Michael Ignatieff have offered to double the Canada Council of Arts budget to $360 million over the next 4 years in order to woo the large contingent of artists in Quebec. Like the Conservatives, there is no mention as to how this is going to be funded and again, even if the Liberals form the next government, if the Liberal candidates in Quebec are not the MPs then the Liberal Party has no reason to follow through with their promises.
The Bloc Québécois and Gilles Duceppe have promised…wait, they can only make promises in one region (Quebec) and never have to worry about how they would fund everything they promise because they will never be the governing party in Canada. All of their promises to the voters in Quebec are veiled. Seriously, why would anyone in Quebec vote for a candidate whose party will never form the government in Canada?
As much as I hate to say it, the NDP and Green Party fall into the same area as the BQ. It pains me because I like many of the ideas of the NDP and I was a Green Party member for several years. But the fact is, both parties can promise all they want, and as good and well thought out as those promises are, they have never formed the government in Canada and are unlikely to in the immediate future. Anything they promise doesn’t have to have an explanation of where the funding is going to come from or worry about having to follow through with their promises.
In the Western Arctic, Dennis Bevington is or was our MP. He is a member of the NDP. What has Dennis done for us lately. Not much really. Why? Because he is a member of a party whose ideals may fit with the people of the NWT (and many other Canadians) but his party will never lead the government. A government formed using Proportional Representation elections might change that but until reform, this will continue.
It basically comes down to you help me and I’ll help you; you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours. Unfortunately it also means if you don’t help me then you won’t get what I promised you. It is typical of politicians.