By Craig Funston
This is a delicate time of year for most of us, that time between lining up to return those unwanted gifts and hoping to not get punched out by a cranky customer, and returning to line up at the time clock to punch in at work. Presents at the store, presence on the job—take your pick.
It’s also the time when we make promises to ourselves and for everyone else.
You know: the weight loss agendas, the nicer-to-the-dog routine, and the increased friendly greetings to those dumpy, grumpy neighbours. News flash: the weight will stay off till about the second week in January, the dog will be kick-free till around the same time, and the neighbours will respond with a two-finger-or less wave back, so that promise will last all of about an hour.
I have my own wish list, the usual in-your-face one, and, yes, it is fairly political. It’s also very realistic, unlike those other, seemingly noble wish lists we all grapple with. As I think about the government, I’m trying to work in a quip here about “dead weight” right about now.
The following are themes that I have wrestled with, so it’s a mix of reflections on the past year (wishes that will just not go away), and vision for the coming one. They are as follows, in no particular order:
1. A new provincial government. I know that the socialists are in for another two years, more (gasp) or less (yea), but there must be a legal or political way (not always the same process) to roust them sooner. I don’t know where to start to describe all the damage they have done, and I have dealt with all the evidence before anyway.
Suffice to say, they are dead wrong on agriculture, education, the environment, and natural resources, and they haven’t even been in office for two years. This means they have messed up (or have threatened to) with the ground we plow, the minds we fill, the air we breath, and the riches beneath our feet. That’s quite a legacy they’re. (And they are leaving soon, aren’t they?)
Even if the right party gets in, it will be years before the damage will be undone.
I know whereof I speak: I saw the same sort of political catastrophe in British Columbia (BC), when the Socreds were ousted and the socialists seeped in. They, too, made repeated and irresponsible decisions; they implemented flawed policies. It took years for BC to recover.
I see the same calamity happening here.
2. A bonafide right wing alternative. That would be the Wildrose party. They have come a long way under Brian Jean’s leadership, and I think they are headed in the right direction (another pun, mercilessly intended).
It could also include the right-of-centre members of the Progressive Conservatives. Anything closer to centre would still be too dangerous. Somehow it is assumed that the closer one party is to the centre, the more moderate or balanced they are. No, it means they are further away from a right, conservative viewpoint.
And when we speak of “conservative,” we use the lower case “c” (versus upper case, an actual party). Most importantly, a truly conservative party must be conservative all respects, in every aspect: morally, fiscally, and socially. Not every party that claims conservative principles is marked by conservative practices.
Their views would be right right across the board: big business, the environment, taxes, health, education, families, and so on. That would be a good start to frame questions for the next time any (wannabe) politician canvases for your vote.
Those are two New Year’s wishes that I have on my mind, with two more coming next week.
Another wish is for you to keep safe this coming weekend.