Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Canada Votes 2011 #2

Einstein is often attributed with coming up with the following definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

I had a post all queued up on Canada's first-past-the-post voting system, and some of the options available for Canadians who don't think the current system provides a proportional representative result.  I intended on drawing a parallel between Einstein's definition and Canadian political history.

Then this happened: May not welcome in leaders' debates: networks

Elizabeth May is the leader of the Green Party. Ms. May is a card carrying member of a federal party that received almost 10% of the popular vote in the last election. Further to that, the Greens run candidates in EVERY single riding. Further to further to that, the Greens actually promote what they think are in the best interests of the entire country, not just a subset or niche element of it, all the while considering the fragile ecosystem Canadians are known for and call home.

Now I'm not saying that every party running needs to be represented at the leadership debates, there has to be some reasonable criteria. The networks have decided that their criteria is that the party must be represented in the house of commons. In the last election, the Greens had a candidate in the house - by way of a defection from another party (they weren't elected as a Green). This time, not so much, so out they go.

Doesn't that just seem, I don't know, WRONG? Getting almost 10% of the vote across the nation and running candidates in every single riding is a big deal. I think that cutting them off at the knees by imposing such a restriction is not in the interests of Canadians. In fact, I would argue that it's incredibly UNdemocratic.

So instead of Elizabeth May it would seem that we will have a leadership debate in which one of the featured candidates represents only a single province in the confederation and whose party's main purpose is to separate from the country.

I think we might just have a new definition of insanity.

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