Canadian Conservatives.

Disclaimer: I know nothing about Canadian politics.
There’s a very strange thing going on in Canada right now with the election only a week or so to go.
I don’t get it. The Canadian press and all polls show the Conservative party winning this next election and the new Canadian Prime Minister will be Stephen Harper. Why? It’s time for a change. It’s total bullshit, at least to me. The Liberals, which are essentially the Democratic party of the States, have had 12 years of good economics, sound fiscal policy, strong deliberation and stands against U.S. foreign policy, same-sex marriage legalization, general overall political and national unity, and healthy immigration. There’s this scandal, concretized by the Gomery Report, that Canadians seem very upset about wherein money changed hands wrongly in Quebec and there was definitely some mismanagement of taxpayer money.
But now even the left-leaning newspapers like The Globe and Mail have issued new editorials stating that Canadians should kick the Liberal bums out of office because, well, there is a need for somethin’ new.
It doesn’t add up. From my experience in the States, conservatives and conservative parties have done a phenomenal job of convincing mass numbers of people that they have a better way of getting things done by killing government programs and then telling them, when government doesn’t work well, that government doesn’t work. It’s brilliant, no doubt. It has an elegant internal logic in terms of public appeal that kept George Bush in the White House a few months ago. And now the Conservatives in Canada, which seem to essentially a “lite” version of Republicans, are making the case that they have “new ideas” such as tax cuts, Kyoto-defiance, healthcare privitization and space militarization that might actually be neat if they could be implemented. Canadian polls show that they don’t like the current Prime Minister, Paul Martin, because he doesn’t seem to connect with their concerns and he had a chance to do something great and they haven’t seen it, yet.
There’s absolutely no assurance that a Conservative government in Canada can do anything except make the nation a U.S. backwater which rationalizes its best policy, intellectual, and national assets away. Conservatives are billed as change agents while the Liberals are viewed as old, sitting ducks. I feel sorry for Mr. Martin, who honestly seems committed to pushing forward a European/American-style approach to good government.
Finally, I can’t help but think, as a new American immigrant in Canada, that the Conseravtive party must be getting lots of very nice financial and strategic help from their buddies in the States, who, in turn, are looking to make life easier for themselves with a conservative northern neighbor. I have little doubt that Karl Rove and other friends of the right are rubbing their sweaty palms together, awaiting the kingship of Conservatives in Canada who can begin to dismantle the nation’s “welfare” statehood.