In my little resort town the yahoos are drinking hard and yelling now that it is too dark to run the jet skis – but with a full moon rising that may not last.
The idea that we are only a day or two away from the thrills and chills of a long writ and a Fall election has yet to make the rounds at Timmy’s and, even after it is called, it will be a week or two before this solidly NDP neck of the woods pays much attention.
The economy is crappy. But the boys are still hauling logs down the road in front of my place. The old guys I drink with once in a while, NDP to a man, will, occasionally rise to a joke about Justin. But they just hate Harper. Incoherently, viscerally, they hate him. They have hated him for the decade he’s been in power and they are not going to change now.
Mulcair is not Harper and that is really all that matters.
On the grander scale, outside the “yokels with pitchforks” demo there are plenty of Harper haters. The question for the NDP is, “Are there enough?”
The coming election, whether called this Sunday or a few weeks from now, will be all about whether or not the NDP can attract enough Liberal Harper haters to win. The seeming collapse of Justin – well deserved but is it real – puts a segment of the Liberal vote into play. (The dimwits in the Maritimes will vote Liberal as a matter of limbic function.) In a hundred ridings across Canada Liberals will either stick with the sinking ship Trudeau or they will jump. If they jump the question is which way.
There are plenty of left Liberals but, to be fair, they are the dumbest and likely to be most loyal to Justin. Much as they hate Harper they love the idea that the Liberal Party really is the natural governing party of Canada.
Liberals of convenience – principally the New Canadians who see the Liberal Party as a way of paving their future – are a wild card. Politically they trend conservative, culturally they have no particular stake in the identity politics of the left simply because so many of them are doing so well. There is no particular reason to believe that Chinese Liberals or Sikh Liberals, when they realize that the good ship Trudeau is holed beneath the waterline, are going to jump to an anti-business, anti-growth party like the NDP. More to the point, there is no hard evidence that New Canadians loathe Harper with quite the passion that the media and political class do. In fact, years of Conservative outreach to the New Canadian world may actually pay off.
Business Liberals, the lawyers, dentists, doctors, bankers and such like who liked the Liberal party for the social cachet are unlikely to jump to the high tax alternative of the NDP. There are BMWer leases to pay and private school fees to cover. While they may never admit it, I suspect about a 4:1 Con split of the Business Liberal class.
Liberal youth, official women, green zealots, will not be coming over to the CPC. They hate Harper. But a fair number of them are dim enough to shoot right past the NDP and vote with their hearts for loony Green candidates. These people are dumb as planks and the very concept of voting strategically is well beyond their comprehension level.
A true implosion of the Liberal vote will obviously favour the NDP. But riding by riding it is not obvious that the NDP will take a lot of seats. If the New Canadian vote goes to its interest, the collapse of the Liberal Party could well enhance Tory chances in many ridings the Grits took in the last election.
People are now shooting off fireworks and bear guns…Election fever is a distant thought under the blue super moon shining across the lake. Sunday is still two drinking days away.