I was reading up on a friend’s blog about why he’s not voting Conservative (Canadian politics folks, not U.S.). He’s got a lot of good reasons and I know they’re not the typical blind zealotry you’ll see from people that are Liberals or… NDP.. or… well, that’s about it right now.  We have several other parties that are represented but they don’t have candidates in all the ridings.

Anyway, I’m actually really curious about these sorts of things too because I went Conservative last couple of elections where I was Liberal before. I’m not hard core for any one party and I’ll go over why below.

I watched most of the Canadian debate last night and finished up the parts I missed this morning (yay technology) and after having watched it, I was left more undecided (if that is possible) than I was before I watched it. There were so many contradictions, lots of finger pointing, flaming (as in cheap shots) and statements without fact or even half statements being made to prove a point while disregarding the rest of the numbers.

I like a lot of aspects of the various parties.

Green Party – I liked how May represented her party. There was minimal childishness from her and, ultimately, it sounds like her party didn’t really have a lot of difference from Liberal and NDP. On comment that raised an eyebrow was with regards to the increase in violent crimes. She said it wasn’t as bad as people thought and said the media made it seem worse than it was. All other leaders there said otherwise. Was this something she missed? Was she right and the others were wrong simply agreeing that the issue was an issue because it mattered to someone that was voting?

Bloq – Duceppe was easier to understand and more direct than Dion was but ultimately, as he said himself, he’s not going to be Prime Minister and three other leaders weren’t going to be either. Which raises the question of why he was there? To represent Quebec? Okay, but if he’s not going to be PM then why does he need a national stage? If anything, I think his presence took away from the debate. A lot of things that were said were repeated by him. He was answering questions on what their plan was but admitted he wasn’t going to be PM. It doesn’t really make sense.

NDP – Pulled on the heartstrings. If things were as bad as Layton made it sound, Canada wouldn’t be as awesome a place to live as it is. That said, he did have a lot of good things to say and I do like a lot of his ideas. The failing is if you continue to think it through. He was tossing money around like there was no end to it. Money for manufacturing, arts, education, health, doctors, and so on. Where is this money going to come from? The tax payer most likely. He mentioned not giving tax breaks to large corporations and banks, and maybe there is something to that assuming they don’t pack up their shops and move to India or China where labor is cheaper.

You’ll have to forgive me if I don’t seem too keen on that because I work for an American company here in Canada, as does my wife. If you tax them to the point where it is cheaper to go elsewhere, you’re impacting a whole other type of worker.

May had some interesting comments about protecting Canadian companies from buyouts, but you have to be careful here and not save a company that can’t stand on its own two feet.

That’s something I didn’t hear much talk about. What plan is in place for encouraging Canadians to buy Canadian product? What measures are in place to ensure we’re getting quality as well? There have been numerous recalls on products created elsewhere and several of them were health related.

Even the thought of “Buy Canada”, the idea of the Canadian government contracting Canadian companies instead of going with less expensive companies from other countries is a nice idea (I believe it was Duceppe’s originally but the NDP, Liberals and Green parties all jumped on board), but that means everything would be more expensive for the government.

Again, where is that money coming from? Tax payers?

Part of me is thinking, “Maybe I should go NDP and see if they really can make Canada super awesome place to live in where you don’t have to pay for healthcare, they’ll feed you UI, protect your jobs, help single mothers, help aboriginals, decrease crime, get guns off the streets, increase the police forces, increase education, encourage more doctors (well, for 10 years at least), create more jobs, invest in manufacturing, and a bunch of other things without raising taxes…”

I’ve got a feeling if they got into power they’d realize that most of what they’re promising simply couldn’t happen as easily as they think.

My ideal government would be one where all the parties get their say and to work issues together rather than against each other. I realize that is sort of how things are supposed to work, but at the moment it seems each party just wants to get into power so they can push their own agenda (Jack Layton of the NDP claims he will work with all groups but with they work with him?).

Each group seems to have good ideas, but it’s hard to buy into their whole plan for any of the parties.

Argh… off to a meeting that runs from lunch until 4pm in the afternoon…


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