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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

The Un-Cultured Harper

The Conservative shut-out in Greater Toronto is far from a shocking revelation to Westerners who would expect no less. However, the Conservatives had targetted Toronto's suburbia as a key battleground which they inevitably lost.

At issue for these voters was what they saw as an absence of cultural refinement in Stephen Harper. This doesn't mean that Harper wasn't polite, or well read, or skilled in the use of cutlery in fine dining. Harper lacked the refinements of a particular culture---the culture of entitlement.

This culture did not merely reside in the high echelons of the Liberal party, but also in suburban Toronto. In fact, GTA voters view themselves not merely as the economic engine of Canada, but also the cultural engine. And they define what a culture of entitlement really is.

The result was that suburban Toronto did not care whether the rest of the country voted for the Conservatives. The GTA's cultured voters refused to be swayed away from their roots and their rights. They felt they had a right to be pandered to. That has always been how things are done in Canada. Which is why the GTA defied national trends and voted for the Liberal party exclusively (not even choosing the ideological Left of the NDP).

These cultured voters knew that only the Liberals held their same values---the values of a culture of entitlement. Stephen Harper, by contrast, was a cultural foreigner, even if he hadn't been from Alberta.

Of course to be fair, there is a distinct culture in Alberta---it is a culture not of entitlement, but of merit.

It is the struggle between these two cultures of entitlement versus merit (not Right vs. Left, English vs. French) that defines the political landscape of Canada---if not the entire Western world.

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You are so right on about the battle of cultures. Wouldn't it be great if our political debates focused on this instead? By the way, you are very generous to call it the culture of entitlement, I think a more accurate term might be parasitic culture... *grin*

Great post Clint, and it brings up the ultimate burning question, will Harper be able to win them over?

At this point I'm on the fence, leaning to the no side, but I guess will see over the next couple months. I think it ultimately depends on how much he can do, or prove wrong doing in some of these scandals. It would take decades to overcome the entitlement issue, and I think the left will demonize Harper to death, much like they do to the republicans in the US. Very similar situations. only ours is much weaker against attack.

ABF,

Your comparison of Canada and the US is an accurate scenario. Especially as we get the Rosie O Donnells of the world denouncing Harper. I fear that many in the Canadian Left are enamoured with the Hollywood Left, not principled Socialism. As such they will demonize Harper---without ideological reasons.

Y. Wippersnapper,

I think the 'parasitic' analogy for TO would be accurate if they had smaller population and power. But I think in their minds, WE, along with the rest of Canada, are the parasites on THEM.

In other words they think they're the BIG DOGS.

But they'll be the Stray Dogs before too long if they don't watch out!

good point Alberticanus - I wonder how they'll do when the gravy train is no longer making stops there?

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