Wasting Votes for the Liberals

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To the editor,

Regarding “Liberals have a worthy leader in Stéphane Dion” by Fiona Hughes in the October 1, 2008 Courier newspaper:

I appreciate Ms. Hughes’ fine exploration of the toxicity of Stephen Harper as prime minister of a minority government and how awful it would be for the rapidly privatizing Canadian culture if he were to become the leader of a majority government.

The reality, thankfully, is that centre and right-wing Canadians are almost evenly split between the Liberals and Reform/Conservatives and the polling numbers have barely budged since the 2006 election. The USA is similar with a near even split between red and blue state voters.

Because of this voter split and since the Bloc is doing so well in Quebec, we have little chance of seeing a majority government again in the near future, or ever. This is good, since majority governments are inherently tyrannical.

But what Ms. Hughes fails to point out is that Dion’s Liberals lacked integrity and provided Harper a de facto majority government every time they abstained on a vote, allowing the toxic Harper to behave like a slightly moderated autocrat.

And since the Liberal caucus has their knives out for Dion once he doesn’t deliver a Liberal majority, the party’s cohesion has been eroding since the election was called. So a vote for the Liberals is a vote for a fractured party with a conflicted sense of self-identity on the verge of yet another leadership race.

It is no coincidence that the NDP has been rising steadily in the polls and has behaved as the de facto official opposition in the last parliament. When it comes to a party that speaks for Canadians, the NDP has stood up to the Reform/Conservative Party and the Liberals, who have been afraid to crash Harper’s parliament because they were never ready to have an election. They still aren’t, which is why Harper had to crash his own parliament.

And the Liberals still don’t deserve our votes. As much as the Democrats in the USA are Republicans-lite, so too are the Liberals: slightly more socially progressive yet just as fiscally hyper-conservative as the Reform/Conservative party.

And as for voting for Wendy Yuan in Vancouver-Kingsway, there is no hope that the Reform/Conservative Party’s attempt at a candidate will win the riding. He is the president of Reform/Conservative’s Delta-Richmond East constituency, and like Ms. Yuan, doesn’t live in Vancouver-Kingsway, but owns a home in Richmond (though last fall Mrs. Yuan rented an apartment in Collingwood). David Emerson also didn’t live in the riding.

So strategic voting in Vancouver-Kingsway is unnecessary. Vote for the principled NDP and let the Liberal Party continue its implosion because they will not be a cohesive force in the next parliament any more than they were in the last one.

Stephen Elliott-Buckley

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Stephen Elliott-Buckley

Post-partisan eco-socialist. at Politics, Re-Spun
Stephen Elliott-Buckley is a husband, father, professor, speaker, consultant, former suburban Vancouver high school English and Social Studies teacher who changed careers because the BC Liberal Party has been working hard to ruin public education. He has various English and Political Science degrees and has been writing political, social and economic editorials since November 2002. Stephen is in Twitter, Miro and iTunes, and the email thing, and at his website, dgiVista.org.

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