Sorry for the lack of posts over the past few days but its crazy over here in New Democratland, er, I mean Metro Vancouver. The orange tide has swept over the Lower Mainland and even if we don't win all of the seats that we are competitive in, this election has seen massive growth for the NDP over here.
Meanwhile, the Liberals have been on a "save the furniture" tour for the tail end of this election, going to Liberal incumbent territory to try to minimize the inevitable losses they will incur once the votes are counted. They are so destitute that their only hope is to try to trick voters, who are legitimately concerned about a Stephen Harper government, into voting for them.
But, in this election in particular, voting Liberal is a wasted progressive vote. Stephane Dion has brought the Liberal party to new lows in support. Here's my brilliant election prediction: the Liberal party will not be forming government. Voting Liberal may help elect another Liberal MP, but that MP is sure to vote with the Conservatives or abstain when it really counts. That is what they did 43 times in the last parliament. Do you really want more of this?
I understand progressive Canadians' concerns with Stephen Harper. I am with you.
Story time: I almost voted Liberal in 2004. Yes, I was swayed by the "Conservatives are sooo scary, you need to hold your nose and vote Liberal" messaging. Guilty. Then a very smart woman (my Mom, awwww) caught me on the way to the poll. I told her about how my riding could easily go Conservative because I'd seen so many Conservative signs and Paul Martin told me I should be scared and blablabla. She responded with something like this:
"Look, your vote counts but not too many races have ever come down to one vote. If you vote Liberal, you'll probably find out when the votes are counted that you didn't have to do that to stop the Conservatives. But you will have to live with the fact that you voted Liberal for the rest of your life."
What I took from that is that since we each only get one vote, it means more to us as individuals, as an expression of what we think is right for Canada, than it does in the grand scheme of who wins or loses. This is why your best bet is to vote for something positive instead of against something negative.
Thanks to my Mom's wisdom, I can say today that I have have always voted NDP. Voting NDP in 2006 helped elect Denise Savoie in Victoria. Denise went to parliament and fought for things I care about like the environment, post-secondary education, anti-scab legislation, the list goes on. Denise never once disappointed me. This is more than progressives who "strategically" voted Liberal last time can say after the Liberal party enabled the Harper agenda 43 times.
The sad truth about the Liberals is that they are not really progressive outside of elections. They govern from the right when they win and vote with the Conservatives when they lose. Voting for them to "stop Harper" makes no sense. It's not strategic, it's a sham.
Liberals say that Jack Layton's "lend us your votes" message in 2006 had a lot to do with their loss. They go so far as to say that they "want their votes back." But I don't think they were their votes. I think that many of the new votes that the went to the NDP in 2006 were from people who sincerely believed in Jack Layton and the NDP, but had possibly voted "strategically" for the Liberals in the past.
This election should see even more votes coming back to the NDP. Because Stephen Harper does need to be stopped and Jack Layton has proved that he and the NDP are the ones to do it. Also, I think people are starting to get tired of the same old same old and that there is an appetite for real change. And, with Jack running for Prime Minister this time, he has energized the base and given true progressives hope. It's an exciting time to be New Democrat.
So, I'm sorry that my Mom is not available to reach all of you who are thinking about voting Liberal, but I'm hoping that this post reaches you before you head to the polls and that you think about what you really want for Canada, not just what you don't want.
9 hours ago