Ignorance is bliss

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Congratulations! If you have managed to stand up, walk over to a Manitoban stand and pick up a copy of this paper then there is still hope for you. Those who couldn’t muster the will aren’t as lucky.

Now I’m no doomsayer, sitting on a porch, vociferously disparaging all the generations who came before and after mine to anyone who will listen, but I do think we have a big problem in this country.

Maybe it’s thanks to the damned boring nature of Canadian politics, or perhaps to the attention sapping nature of television, but we have a political memory in this country that would make a goldfish feel proud.

By my estimation we have been letting our politicians get away with murder in this damned country — figuratively speaking of course— since about 2006, when the Conservatives won themselves a minority parliament in the face of the Liberal’s sponsorship scandal.
Since that election, Canadians have been asked to swallow several mouthfuls steaming bullshit. Some of the most grievous are listed below:

An “In and Out” scandal, in which it is alleged that the national Conservatives filtered funds through local constituency offices to avoid campaign spending caps.

-The firing of the federal nuclear safety watchdog for speaking out about a nuclear reactor running without the federally mandated minimum safety requirements.

-A federal cabinet minister associating with people directly linked to organized crime, who then proceeded to leave classified documents at said associate’s house.

-The refusal to release un-redacted documents regarding the treatment Afghan detainees, despite a parliamentary order.

The proroguing of Parliament twice, in an attempt to avoid answering for the actions of the federal government.

-The implementation of international policies that do not reflect the views of a majority of Canadians, and which have lowered our international image such that we were denied a seat on the UN Security Council.

As mentioned above, this is but a taste of what the Conservatives have pulled off in four short years. But does it matter? No.

According to an EKOS poll released on Oct. 28, the Conservative Party of Canada is currently leading the Liberals by six points, just a few short weeks after capitulating the security council seat to Portugal.

Apparently we are such bloody sheep in this country that our elected officials can treat average Canadians like garbage: lying to us, suspending democracy and ruling with an undeserved sense of entitlement, and we do nothing. In fact, we do worse than nothing. Of the few of us who are still motivated enough to trudge to the polls, more than enough check the box beside the Conservative candidate to keep these people in power.

Maybe I’m wrong, but I feel that before the Liberal’s sponsorship scandal, Canadians were much less willing to put up with this crap.

Could this be the lingering effect of the sponsorship scandal? Have we developed an unwillingness to hold our leaders and political parties accountable for their actions? I hope not, but it certainly feels like it.

Locally we’re no better.

Winnipeg just ended a round of voting, where each and every incumbent who ran was reelected. What this says to me is that the majority of Winnipeggers — who have been dealing with violent crime, crumbling infrastructure and community centres and construction projects begun without adequate public consultation, which constantly run past deadline — think these people are doing a great job.

Albert Einstein said that insanity is “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Apparently we’re all bat-shit nuts.

Leif Larsen is wondering why we even had an election.