The Popularity Contest—Canadian version

(Originally posted 9/10/2008, 1:01 a.m.)

Wow, it’s only, what, the third “official” day of the election campaign, and I’m already so sick of seeing Stephen Harper’s mug and his party’s attack ads. Nothing’s new with them, is it? Make some asinine ads/comments, get some quick publicity buzz, then have the leader “distance” himself from it all, saying that he had no idea. Pooping puffins? C’mon Tories, how old are you, 10? Why don’t you just moon Stéphane Dion and blow raspberries at him, while you’re at it? Even dismissive comments that Harper made, feigning lack of knowledge of his opponent’s family situation (“I presume he’s a family man also”) makes one think of the type of retort that a child would give, “I don’t know, and I don’t care. So there.”

In this election, the schoolyard bully is attempting to re-paint himself as a kind, gentle, warm-fuzzy family man. Sorry, doesn’t work for me, as I’m sure for millions of other Canadians who can see through this. Every time I see a picture of him, I don’t feel anything but coldness (remember, this is the man who shook hands with his kids upon walking them to school, and he wants us to believe that he’s warm and fuzzy?), and an intent to hide and mislead. Seriously, take a gander at any photo of Harper, even ones where he’s supposedly smiling, and look at his eyes. Cover his nose on down and take a close look at his eyes. They’re lacking in warmth and sincerity. This is not a man that I want to be my PM for another term.

I call elections “popularity contests”, because for most voters, that’s what it comes down to isn’t it? You vote for the person that you just like more, and not necessarily for his/her views. Anybody who’s seen student council elections at work understands this. Stephen Harper knows this, otherwise, why run a campaign making direct attacks on Mr. Dion as “weak” and presumably not a warm and fuzzy family man?. Harper is playing the role of the bully on the playground, and unfortunately, I believe that most people tend to rally around that duffus rather than the smart, shy, nice, intellectual-type. Out of fear or some misguided sense of awe, I don’t know. In any case, I hope we Canadians smarten up and stop punishing Mr. Dion and the Liberals for the previous party’s Ad Scandal (the real reason the Liberals lost the last election, IMO, not because Harper was some kind of a political genius or super nice guy).

Let’s vote this cold, calculating bully out of office.

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