Canadian voters! Quit hitting the snooze button and get the fuck up, because in the next election the shit might hit the fan.
The fact that the Canadian Alliance are a bunch of hatemongering so-called “So-Cons” is hardly a surprise (what was a surprise was exactly how close Stockwell Day came to achieving significant political power – I mean, this is a man who told the Alberta Report that if women are willing to cut up their fetuses while they’re in the womb, it stood to reason that they’d be willing to abuse their babies once they were born. You heard it here first: women who are pro-choice abuse their children! And yes, he actually said that). The history of the Alliance is a series of “misinterpreted,” “unintended” “slips of the tongue” revealing an underbelly of racist, sexist, homophobic views; no number of disavowals, disciplinary measures or apologies can un-ring the bell of right-wing extremism. The Alliance have tried to temper their platform in order to take advantage of the virtual disappearance of the Progressive Conservative party and scoop up the votes of the disenchanted right-leaning demographic. Canada, however, don’t play that way: no matter how pugnacious and outright Texan Alberta can be, we are a socially progressive, tolerant society. The Alliance seemed to be safely relegated to a confined, regional base of support.
Now they want to merge with what’s left of the Progressive Conservative party. Although the Liberals have had three straight majority governments, they have taken advantage of the vote-splitting on the right: a unified right-wing party, playing up the country’s dissatisfaction with the Liberals' cockiness, could pose a solid threat to another Liberal majority.
And now, this. Larry Spencer is a flat-out, cross-burning bigot (and a US import, sadly reinforcing the stereotype of redneck Baptist preachers). Someone yanked his cord, and he went on at length about his opinion of homosexuality – namely, that it should be illegal. Again, I said at length: this was not a single, ill-chosen epithet, blurted out in the heat of the moment. The guy has fucking theories. He has obviously put his blighted, stunted excuse for a brain to serious work concocting this drivel; furthermore, he seemed blithely oblivious to the notion that elucidating these theories in front of a camera would be a political faux pas.
Thankfully, the bastard was summarily sacked. But what exactly was he fired for? Was he fired for his views – oh, shucks, we totally didn’t realize we had a hatemonger in our midst! He was sneakily hiding under that white cloak! – or was he fired for expressing them at a politically touchy time? If this is the kind of thing that Alliance members will happily stand up and say in public, I can only imagine what gets said behind closed doors in policy meetings.
Joe Clark has it right – this won’t be a merger between two parties. This will be a takeover of the PCs by the Alliance. The fiscally-conservative, socially-moderate PC voter base won’t cotton to the hard-line, Republican-lite stylings of the Alliance: former PC candidates will lose safe Tory ridings and disappear from sight.
Now, I have my doubts about Paul Martin – everyone is starry-eyed about his magical budget-balancing act, but his corporate history and social conservatism aren’t exactly prime Liberal leadership in the making. But we’ve got no option but to vote Liberal – Canada has to sit up and pay attention in the next election, or we’ll wake up in bed, politically speaking, next to Pat Robertson’s bastard spawn. And there’s no drinking off THAT kind of hangover.
This has been a social service announcement, sponsored by Boring You To Fucking Death.