View From the Hill by Keith Beardsley – The Weather Trumps Politics – February 9, 2011

Cornwall ON – The media continues to whip itself into a frenzy over whether or not there will be an election some time in the next two months- but who is listening?

It is certainly not regular Canadians, who shrug and go about their business of earning a pay cheque and raising a family. And is it any wonder that they are turned off? Inside the Ottawa bubble it’s business as usual… partisans attack partisans. Each side trying to come up with the perfect 10 second clip in Question Period, for partisans a true life and death struggle that plays out five days a week.

But it is lost on regular Canadians who long ago tuned out that nonsense. None of the parties right now have offered anything inspiring that would stir the masses to support them. Bad behaviour continues to be rewarded with news clips whose main benefit is to allow people the opportunity to go get a snack during the nightly news.

The Conservatives trot out another list of justice bills, the Liberals promise to take care of you from birth to the grave, the NDP promise to do it for Canadians although they aren’t sure what and the Bloc forgets that they promised to go home after two elections.

Meanwhile, Canadians from coast to coast see Conservative attack ads, groan in unison and look at each other with a here they go again attitude. They look at the Liberal promises of a national day care program and wonder how they can be so stupid as to keep promising something they never deliver on.

Only the big ticket items, the F-35, arenas and corporate tax cuts have generated some interest. Fortunately for the Conservatives Canada is fighting a war and the population can understand why we need the best equipment we can get for our armed forces, otherwise this F-35 wouldn’t fly.

On the issue of corporate tax cuts, I haven’t met a single person yet who has accepted the Conservative line on their necessity. They haven’t bought into the logic that the same banks that just raised their mortgage rates need a tax break. As for the Liberal position that the $6 billion should go to new programs, voters know that any new program will always cost far more than budgeted. And guess who will pay for the excess in the end?

The arena issue won’t fly with voters. Other than a few scared Conservative MPs in Quebec City, people don’t want to see their hard earned tax dollars going to pay for arenas for millionaire players to skate in.

With nothing in Ottawa to keep or excite their interest, is it any wonder that Canadians prefer to talk about the weather and ignore politics?

Keith Beardsley is a senior strategist for True North Public Affairs in Ottawa, as well as a blogger and political analyst. He can often be found running or cycling on his favorite bike trails.

Best WesternKAV Productions

1 Comment

  1. Keith, Nature is far more interesting than idiot politicians.

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