I’ve been told that Muskoka/Parry Sound has always been Progressive Conservative. When I hear that it usually means “I vote PC because I always voted PC and my parents voted PC”.
First of all, today’s federal Progressive Conservatives are not John Diefenbaker PCs one’s parents voted for years ago. I’m always amazed how quick people accepted and forgotten the amalgamation of the failing PC Party of the of 90’s with the right wing, western based, Reform Party with its anti-gay, pro-privatization, immigration without compassion and abandonment of aboriginal responsibilities policies. Does any of this still sound familiar?
Second of all, if you look back, pretty well every prime-minister before Stephen Harper was a lawyer…okay there was Jo Who…at least he was smart but lacked party confidence. As much as we all love to hate lawyers, you have to believe that at some point, anyone who studies law begins with at least a small element of compassion, desire to help and change the human condition or are even interested in some sort of fair and hopefully democratic, government.
Stephen Harper was an economist and a founding members of the Reform Party. If you recall, when he first came onto the stage they literally removed his jacket and tie then took pictures of him in a cardigan like Mr Rogers to project compassion and humanity. I’ve heard people talk about how brilliant he is. Really? Why would a brilliant economist in the year 2015 put so much emphasis on natural resources development, screw the environment, abandon manufacturing, stifle scientific research, plus, promote the celebration of war as culture?
I do believe our parents influence our voting habits. Just as I believe they influence the choices we make in life. Harper’s father was an accountant for Imperial Oil where Stephen started in the mail room. Justin’s was a dynamic lawyer, environmentalist, and although at times a bit arrogant (which I loved). Pierre was also intelligent and entertaining…And then of course there Justin’s mom. Loved her too. Remember the El Macambo?…Excuse me I digress.
Recently. I called up the local Liberal office and had them put biggest sign they had for candidate Trisha Cowie on my property. She has an impressive background (is a lawyer) with way more life experience than some of the NDP MP’s now in Parliament. I’ve met incumbent Tony Clement on several occasions. He’s a nice enough guy. He’s also responsible for bringing the (non) G-8 conference to Muskoka/Parry Sound…Oh yeah, we’re not supposed to talk about that ’cause we all got great buildings, sidewalks and gazebos even though the whole shindig moved to Toronto. Hey, what’s a billion dollars.
So on Friday, a nice gentleman showed up at the door to erect the sign. A real tough, big sort of outdoor guy. As we we were chatting I glanced over at his car. His license read “LEGALIZE”. I laughed. I figured it wasn’t about gay marriage. He told me that last year 57,000 Canadians were criminalized because of possession of pot. He shook his head and added that his boss didn’t like his license plate. Then I asked him what he did?
“I’m a cop”, he answered. Now that is a compassionate voter.
So then as he banged the stakes into the ground, I asked, “Do you think Tony’s going to get back in?” He said no. He believes the man, a career politician and a member of the inner circle, is going to be brought down, along with others over the Duffy affair.
Funny thing about this senate nonsense. When Harper was with the Reform Party, one of their mandates was Senate reform. Not necessarily demolishing it but turning it into an elected body. Obviously, that idea is on hold.
Listen, I’m not telling you to vote Liberal, or PC or whatever. I’m just saying, don’t vote for someone because your parent’s voted for their party. Do a little research. Think about your needs. Your family’s needs. Your community’s needs. And whatever you do, don’t not vote for someone because their opponent tells you they are just not ready. It’s not just lazy, fear mongering campaigning, it also shows how threatened they feel.