Monday, May 26 Commentary
The way things are going in the Ontario Election campaign, it wouldn't surprise me in the least if we end up with the lowest voter turnout in the history of this great province.
I find the 3 leaders to be zombies. Totally uninspiring.
It's my job to pay attention to election campaigns including reading through the platforms. More than once, I found myself nodding off while trying to read through the gobbledy-gook. If it weren't for my job I would tune out completely from these 3 and their backroom machines. You wouldn't believe the spin and pettiness that comes out of the camps of the Liberals, PC's and New Democrats. Everytime one comes in, I read a few lines then hit delete. Delete. Delete. Delete.
Yesterday there were classic examples of what I'm referring to. The Liberals were hyping the fact that Kathleen Wynne would be unveiling the Liberal election platform. Rah, rah, sis, boom bah! Grandiose announcement? Not a bit. It was the budget her government presented and never got passed with a slight variation. Her billion dollar commitment to the Ring of Fire in northern Ontario was original contingent upon funds from Ottawa. Now she says the money is in whether Ottawa comes on board or not.
Then there was PC leader Tim Hudak. He'd been largely positive in this campaign about his jobs message but recent polling shows that bombshell of eliminating a hundred-thousand public sector jobs has damaged him. Hudak has largely been leaving the negative stuff to his co-horts Lisa McLeod and Vic Fidelli until yesterday on NewsTalk 1010's The Province.
This is the kind of talk which undermines all politicians. That somehow they're all power-mad and will promise you anything to get that power. I realize many voters believe this to be true but it isn't. There are good politicians trying to do good things.
As for Andrea Horwath, I mentioned earlier in the month that she looked and sounded distracted and unfocused, glum at times. Since then we've been hearing how some of the old guard of the NDP are leading a rebellion against her hard turn to the right which may explain the distraction and glumness. But now Horwath is over compensating. She did an interview with CTV's Bob Fife that aired yesterday and she had a plastic smile a mile wide, for no apparent reason. The NDP platform barely has a leg to stand on.
My biggest fear is that if voters are already tuned out, they either won't vote at all or they will try to vote strategically, an 'anybody but' mentality. The last time we did that in an Ontario election, Bob Rae became Premier and bad times were had by all.
It has taken decades to get the European Union going. It's now an economic powerhouse.
It's future is in question this morning following elections to the European Parliament on the weekend in which politicians who want to reduce the powers of the EU or abolish it completely, now will have a much greater say.
For example, the far right National Front in France scored a stunning first victory in the European Parliamentary elections. This is a party which is anti-immigration, anti-Euro.
Far right and far left parties gained ground in many countries except Germany where the pro-European centre ground held firm.
Don't be surprised if the stock markets react negatively to what has happened...but propably not until tomorrow when Wall Street re-opens. The British markets are also on holiday.
It's Memorial Day in the U.S. It means no classes at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Classes are cancelled tomorrow too, a day of mourning after a mentally deranged man went on a killing spree Friday night. 22-year old Elliot Rodger first stabbed to death his 3 housemates. Then he went to a sorority where he planned to kill all the women inside. He couldn't get in so he walked around the corner and opened fire on a crowd killing 3. From there he got into his BMW and raced around shooting people randomly. 13 wounded. Then he killed himself.
Sierra Swartz was walking alone when the BMW pulled up. Elliot Rodger tried to speak to her. Suddenly gunshots.
Veronika Weiss was one of those shot to death by this man. Her father, Bob Weiss is grieving but also thinking about the parents of the shooter.
Weiss says something must be done about gun laws.