Saturday, October 19, 2019

It's almost over, a rant

Canadian politics season, that is. Sometime Tuesday morning it should be all over but the crying. At the moment (Saturday afternoon) 338canada seat projection is:
Lib 137 +- 57
Con 123+- 48
NDP 37+- 24
BQ 37+- 13
Grn 2+-2

Note that 170 seats are needed for a majority government. This can be had with 37% of popular vote if it happens just right, and it has several times. Unless something drastic happens, or the pollsters have it wrong in a huge way, we are headed into minority government territory. Note those projections don't add to 338 because I rounded numbers.

Based on the polling from Oct 16, if we had an election based on proportional representation we would end up like this:
Con 112
Lib 109
NDP 61
Grn 32
BP 23

Look at the difference in the Green and NDP! No wonder Trudeau bailed on his promise to enact proportional representation. Note those totals don't add to 338 because I rounded numbers, and I don't know exactly what assumptions when into that estimate.

So let's ignore the +- stuff, and the prop rep dream, and say that the seat count comes out essentially as above. Lib plus NDP equals a minority government with a bit of room to spare. They might or might not get some Green or Bloc votes depending on exactly the issue under debate. At least the Lib and NDP are ideological cousins, not all that far removed from each other in the great scheme of things. They've been in such a coalition before. If they can stay disciplined and everybody is willing to bend a bit in negotiations, we could have 4 years of this, though minority governments tend to last about 2 years.

The Conservatives will be fuming, of course. But I think minority governments are often a good thing. It forces them to tread a little more carefully, and they have to seek the ongoing approval of another party.

It's hard to see the Cons taking their 123 seats and cobbling together a confidence vote win by getting nearly unanimous cooperation from 2 other parties hostile to them. It's even harder to see the Cons governing with the support of the NDP and BQ. I think it would lead to another election pretty quick.

Things get hairier if it's the Cons that win about 135 seats and the Libs around 125. Given the +- numbers that is an entirely plausible result. JT is under no obligation to resign. He can tell the Governor General he intends to recall the house at such and such date (perhaps mid November) and attempt to govern. From that moment till the vote on the Throne Speech you can bet there will be an intense series of negotiations to sort out who supports who. Libs and NDP come up a bit short in that scenario, and they might have to work something out to encourage a few Bloc to support them. Or encouraging a few of them to cross the floor and become part of the government. Stranger things have happened. The Conservatives will completely lose their shit under those circumstances. It would be almost fun to watch.

And yet, the Conservatives would find it difficult to govern starting with about 135 seats. They need about 35 more votes, every time, coming from a pool of about 70 seats between two parties that have no real desire to support the Conservatives. Piss someone off and its really easy to see them losing a confidence vote.

Closer to home, I hear lots of grumbling about Trudeau and the hate he and the Liberals have for Alberta and the oil industry. There are much louder grumblings about separation again. This has been on again, off again background music in Alberta ever since I moved here in 1980.

I tell people it's probably the stupidest idea I've ever heard of. It would be economic suicide for Alberta. The 800 pound gorilla in the room is the the oil and gas industry and pipelines that cross other jurisdictions. If we can't get pipelines built while a part of this country and we're all supposed to be working together, how on earth is it going to happen if we declare independence and have to get other countries to build the pipelines?

Don't think we'd become part of the USA. They have nothing to gain that they don't already have, and we still lose even if it happens. Many people to our south enthusiastically protested a pipeline. Alberta is a big deal in Canada, arguably number 2 in economic clout and certainly no worse than 4th. We would be an also-ran compared to the other individual states. There are other issues as well, here's a primer for you.

There are about 45 other landlocked countries, and only Switzerland could be considered an economic success story. It's not a group of countries I'd willingly choose to join. So lets stop spouting such nonsense, and get on with making things better.

For starters, we vote like idiots. Conservative, almost unanimously. They bring out ruinous policies and we still vote for them. Quebeckers are much smarter, and are willing to change their votes to other parties. It means they have to be paid attention to. The political parties ignore Alberta; the Conservatives because they know they're going to win almost all the seats, and the Liberals because they know exactly the same thing and why waste their effort? Come on people, lets get it together and start thinking smarter. Withhold the love. Make them work for it.

And now some photos for you. Sunrise this morning. Nothing special.

A little later the light was awesome for Celina.

Lynx of the Day

Deadwood of the Day
From Cypress Hills park.

1 comment:

Looking forward to reading your comment!