As planned, Harper dropped the writ on August 2 and started the longest federal election campaign since 1872. There is only one reason: the Conservatives had changed the Elections Act earlier, allowing the governing party to spend a lot more in an extended election campaign period. Nevertheless, the unnecessary long election would waste taxpayers' money to the tune of $125 million, i.e. over $3 million for each additional day.
My earlier commentary analyzing why the NDP has been leading in the polls has been quite well-received and judging from the latest opinion polls, it looks like things are happening as I anticipated. In this article, I would like to further explain the situation from another angle.
It's about the difference between genuine and fake.
Many people may not like candor but being deceived is more unwelcome. People like truthfulness but dislike fakery. It is because a fake is second-rate or low-grade. Selling a fake as the real thing is fraud.
Let's take a look at the Harper Conservatives. Basically their ads and messages are there to create an illusion of good economy, sound fiscal management and the country under the threat of terrorism. In short, the Conservatives are faking their governing record.
Is Canada truly under a terrorism threat? Are people scared and worried about their safety? I don't think so. Take a look across the country. When people are participating in summer community events and activities, from parade to firework shows, have you seen any soldier around carrying firearms?
Harper and the Conservatives took every opportunity to sing their tune about balanced budget and good economy. It is of course not true. Canada has already recorded five consecutive months of minus growth and it has been projected that this year's budget will be in the red, i.e. Harper's eighth consecutive deficit budget. Under the reign of Harper, the Conservatives have increased our national debt to the tune of over $150 billion. The fact is, the Harper Conservatives have the worst economic record of any government since the Second World War (economic growth, job creation, trade deficit, etc., you name it.)
While the Conservatives are faking their governing record, Trudeau's Liberals are faking to be the New Democratic Party.
The Trudeau Liberals' campaign slogan is "real change." Sounds familiar? Isn't "change" the movement and slogan of the NDP? But when the NDP is riding high on the polls and "change" is popular, the Liberals have to abandon their elitism and "natural governing party" stance and pretend to be New Democrats. My guess is the Liberals think they lack credibility, thus they added the word "real" in. Somehow, "real change" sounds phoney and more fake.
In the recent leaders' debate, there was a scene in which Trudeau left this writer with an amusing and yet negative impression. His aggressive hit on Mulcair on the referendum question. He insisted that Mulcair provide a number/percentage at which to accept the independence claim of the sovereigntists. But when Trudeau was asked the very same question he challenged the NDP and Conservative leaders, he evaded it and refused to answer. Turned out that none of the party leaders was willing to bring out the genie from the sovereignty bottle. By playing politics on this sensitive and delicate issue, Trudeau has put partisan interest ahead of grave national interest.
The Liberal Party leader has demonstrated to Canadians that he is indeed "not ready" for the big role.
As for the NDP Leader Tom Mulcair, I have to say that his performance was not as good as his speeches and questioning in the parliament challenging the Conservative government. As the frontrunner, Mulcair was the target of the other three leaders. If we compare him with the other party leaders, then his steadiness, moderation, calmness, and the depth and conviction of his beliefs demonstrate convincingly that he is an ideal candidate for the prime minister. That is why Tom Mulcair and the NDP have been leading the polls in recent months.
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