Was it Warren Buffet who reminded us of the irrationality in the stock market? What was it he said, stock markets are people driven and people are irrational? I'd like to add the movements of populist governments to his irrational people bit as, it seems to me, both populist governments and stock markets are guided by public opinion. If public opinion is an expression of human behavior, (run that one by your local shrink if you like,) does that make it the result of feelings, instincts, and herd-like responses to media induced perceptions (not a herd of hippo's mind you, that's the U.S., but more like a herd of, oh let's say....good ole Canadian deer?)
Ya, well maybe that's the gist of it. But wait, there's more! I'm of the disparaging opinion that populations make collective decisions based on relatively primary conditions. Take for instance conditions like fear, hope and anger (yes, a rather base generalization, but for the purposes of this note, sufficient.)
In these tumultuous times it seems the Canadian population shied away from Stephane Dion's--listen closely now--(un...cert...taint...tay,) and, in spite of our deeply set Liberal traditions, chose the strength of Stephen Harper's personal delivery and the professional depth in his party ( not to mention any well timed, well aimed and well financed attack-ads.)
In support of this notion, and in response to a query from an old friend, who touched upon the differences between the mild mannered uneventful Canadian election and the prime-time, big show down in the U. S. of A., I want to suggest that perhaps the two parties south of the border already show significant strength in leadership, strength that has given the American population room to consider the lofty concept of hope?
Just as any financial advisor can assure you the average investor doesn't have time to really get to know a company's fundamentals (and he or she does, of course,) any political science professor can assure you the general population doesn't have time to look deeply into the intellectual or ideological aspects of a party's platform (to test this hypothesis all you have to do is actually find a political science professor, which has got to be more difficult than finding a financial advisor, as the latter seem to grow on trees.)
So reasons d'etre aside (pardon my shoddily funded Canadian public school French,) any long-time loyalist liberal should be disappointed that we don't have the political team we need to give Canada the intellectual strengths of our platform--maybe it's time for the Whigs to plug the holes in the hull and get recruiting, yes? Many people still believe the majority of Canadians, from coast to shining coast, are truly Liberal at heart. Many people still believe that the majority of these Liberal Canadians have long been proud of their reputation in the world...a reputation for sound humanitarianism, responsible foreign policy, leadership in environmental concerns, and a sincere and meaningful transparency.
Still, there is another perspective, one that I, not as a Liberal, which I am, but as a Canadian, which I also am, agree with. A perspective that suggest we as a country have somehow come out of this on-top. Strangely, it might be said a minority government gives us the best of both worlds. We get the fiscal prudence, strength of leadership and economic savvy of the current conservative group. While, at the whim of a divided house, their weaknesses can be revealed, contained, and corrected for. Hopefully this will keep them from sacking every social program out there, chucking the rule book for big business into the garbage...and sacrificing the best interests of 80% of the population so they can run off willy-nilly boosting the bottom lines for the remaining 20%...yep, dangerously devoid of conscience.
Finally, as Liberal, I want to say I'm proud of Stephane Dion, who showed more (moxy) than most people (likely himself included) expected he had in him-what a guy! And again, as a Liberal (this is off topic but...) I just have to say how proud I am of Romeo Dallaire, who I think has set an example of leadership in Canadian foreign policy, by acting in a sincere, honorable and dutiful way, while showing the world what it means to be Canadian.
So, there you have it, once again I've gone on a tirade about my political views (what is it they say, never discuss sports, politics or religion at the dinner table.) If you've read this far and have an opinion, please feel free to comment on Anada Lee Tans inspired topic of (What the Heck Happened up Here?)