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Recovering backpacker, Cornwallite at heart, political enthusiast, catalyst, writer, husband, father, community volunteer, unabashedly proud Canadian. Every hyperlink connects to something related directly or thematically to that which is highlighted.

Monday, 29 September 2014

The Wrong Tune for the Times

Once again, we're hearing reports of new Conservative TV attack ads in Quebec. 
With less than 24 hours left before tonight's critical fundraising deadline, this dramatic development illustrates what's at stake in this fundraising drive.
OMG!! Attack ads! Critical fundraising deadlines! Dramatic development!
Look, we get it; people aren't paying attention to politics, so a bit of drama is required.  You need a lot of money to reach people via ads and whatnot, which is much more controllable than empowered local riding associations and the like.  And yeah, all parties are guilty of the same damned thing.
But let's maintain a little bit of perspective, shall we?  It really helps with the credibility angle.
Canada is country filled with people both born elsewhere and with families in foreign countries.  Even those with no direct roots overseas are surely exposed to a little bit of international news.
The Middle East is one fire and the fire is spreading.  What's happening in the Ukraine with Russia - are we back in the Cold War?  What will happen with the massive protests in Hong Kong?  The conflicts in Sudan or Somalia?  The drug war in Mexico?  Ebola?
What about job opportunities for our kids instead of us giving money to monied people to spend pitching us for more money?
Attack ads aren't pleasant, but they're not dramatic, either.  Partisan fundraising isn't "critical" - few Canadians know who the players are, or even what issues the policy discussion is focused on.
What we are worried about is a world that increasingly feels like it's spiraling out of control.  We want to have confidence that our political leaders are paying attention, are hearing our concerns and have some idea of how to weather this storm and maybe help tame those troubled seas a little.
Are we getting that?  If the question was asked, not on a candidate-vs-candidate basis, but in general: "do you feel Canada's politicians are up to the global challenges facing us?" - what would the answer be?
I get in trouble for suggesting that maybe there's more to politics than partisanship, that maybe what the people think is critical is less about political coloration and more about the world we live in.  Nobody likes a party pooper.
But I've been right before, haven't I?

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