Sunday, September 27, 2015

Everything you always wanted to know about Canadian politics

While relief from our current political unpleasantries is still 14 months away, Canada is having its big election in about three weeks. (Fun fact: "Canada" is a French word meaning "dirty fries.")

Canada's 2015 campaign cycle was the lengthiest in its history: 11 weeks! This is in stark contrast to the U.S. election model, whose length is determined by capitalist television criteria, and can be summed up by the phrase, "As long as it sells frozen pizza rolls."

The Conservative Party is currently in power in Canada, followed by the New Democratic Party (actual slogan: "Ready for change." They have evidently been ready for change for a long time. The NDP was established in 1961.)

The third major party, and the one which was in power for fully two-thirds of the 20th Century, is called the Liberal Party (actual slogan: "Real change." I am fairly sure that, by law, a political party's slogan must contain at least one of the words "ready," "real" or "change.")

And sure, you've got your Independent Party ("Real independent") and your Green Party ("Real green"), but every country's got those. Canada, however, has the only Rhinoceros Party ("Real horny," I'm guessing.) It was established in 2006, and in only nine years has managed to not win any seats anywhere. It has promised not to keep any of its promises if elected, which nobody has to worry about them not keeping. If only we could get those kinds of assurances from American politicians.

If elected, the Rhino Party promises to:
  • Give lottery winners a Senate seat
  • Promote "higher education" by building taller schools
  • Nationalize Tim Hortons (a kind of Canadian Dunkin' Donuts)
  • Repeal the law of gravity
Canada has an Animal Alliance Party (hopefully they are allied with some meat eaters, which would certainly spice up the door-to-door campaigning), a Marijuana Party, and a Pirate Party. Yarr, dude, these do not appear to have slogans. Or voters.

Canadians have the reputation for getting along, and yet Canada not only has a Communist Party but a Marxist-Leninist Party as well. They could not agree on enough to merge the two! This is the political equivalent of building a combo Denny's/Coco's. Oh, Canada.

Best of all, in Canada, political parties get reimbursed by the government for 50% of their election expenses! I had always suspected Canadians had a sense of humor because of their flag, but that cements it.

. . .

Then again, some parties are really out there...