Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Sun wins at unintended irony

Well, I've been pretty busy as of late (as you may have noticed by the decreasing word count of my posts) and haven't had time to inflict self-torture by reading the Winnipeg Sun. But I did notice something: the trash tabloid's headlines say "Fear wins" in reference to the NDP victory last night. While it's probably quite right that attack ads were a key factor in the Dipper victory, I can't help but notice the irony.

The Winnipeg Sun, for those of you who are sane enough to ignore it, has been publishing countless fear-mongering attack articles to hurt the Manitoba NDP. They've been trying to get people lose their minds over the provincial deficit and tried to infer that falling revenue due to a global demand slump somehow means that Selinger's been ruining us with reckless spending. Tom Brodbeck, in his usual hack MO, has tried to bring the worst excesses of US style Dumb on Crime politics to Winnipeg (and has succeeded in riling up at least one wannabe vigilante) when not crying wolf over the debt.

I guess being second rate or worse at fear-mongering is something the Winnipeg Sun just can't handle. If their attempts at scaring people don't work, what else are they to do? Journalism?!!

First Past the Post strikes again!

Okay, I'm pretty happy that Manitoba didn't get a Tory Majority. A proliferation of Public-Private Partnerships, a scale-back of antipoverty funding, labour rights curtailment, and potential austerity (which would be excused mid to late in the government's first term as necessary to fight a "staggering" debt, especially if another global financial crisis hurts Manitoba's revenue base) would proceed. That being said, it's pretty messed up that the NDP has progressively increased it's seat count from 2003 to 2007* while the party's popular vote fell

Regionally concentrating one's power base results in messed up results like the ones for the last two provincial elections. If the Tories succeed under a new leader in 2015 at getting control of Winnipeg's suburbs, expect an equally skewed result in the opposite direction next time round.** 

Unless, of course, we demand electoral reform now.

*The NDP seat count increased in 2007 from 2003 levels despite a popular vote fall. The party's seat count increased this election from 2007 levels despite a drop in the popular vote this time as well.

**Since a second, and worse, dip to the the global recession will likely be coming along soon, there is a strong possibility that this victory will be bittersweet for the Dippers. The next dip will likely hit Canada harder and the commodities market won't save us next time. The chattering class, as they always do, will attribute global macroeconomic problems as resultant by "ideological extremism" on the part of the NDP and Selinger will gain Howard Pawley's reputation.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Air Canada - Can you get any more despicable?

No longer content on hurting Canadians with stupid corporate policies like putting expiry dates on  Aeroplan miles*, the upper-management of Air Canada have yet another bright idea. They've decided to enact "safety" rules like avoiding Downtown Winnipeg hotels. And they choose the best time imaginable in PR terms to do it - right after a bunch of displaced rural First Nations started residing in said hotels.

I wonder - since Air Canada sends flights to the US (a country whose overall per capita homicide rate is higher than that of Canadian murder capital Winnipeg) - whether they bar staff from visiting US hotels.

And to McFadyen; yes, Downtown crime is higher than it should be, but no, that doesn't excuse stupid corporate moves. Winnipeg isn't Detroit or Los Angeles and it's (more professional) hotels are more than suited to handling flight staffers (especially if they're informed about the potential dangers).

Finally, Air Canada, I'm really looking forward to the day West Jet puts you out of business.

*Aeroplan is, of course, owned and integrated with Air Canada.

E-Day Done, Now It's Time To Count

^ Up-to-date* seat projections

I suspect an NDP government will form, either a razor-thin Majority or a Majority. I'd like to see the Liberals win a few more seats, but there's a risks that the PCs will take out Gerrard's own seat.

All in all, I suspect another of First Past the Post's famous Manufactured Majorities for the NDP, even if another party wins the popular vote. Which is unfortunate, as a Minority government might provide the right environment for electoral reform to gain sway in this province.

Oh, and Fair Vote Manitoba, HURRY UP AND START DOING STUFF!

*Assuming you're reading this before Elections Manitoba officially verifies the results.