Why does the media seem to think that political parties should be rewarded for the smoothness of their campaigns? Why, for that matter, to large numbers of the public seem to take the same tack?
In 2004, the papers were full of doomsday opinion about the Tories. They were unable to stay on message. Various candidates popped up like carnival whack-a-moles to sell their latest version of a Canada all white English people could be proud of. Meanwhile, the Liberal campaign used every gaffe to its advantage and quite likely saved themselves in the process.
Now, in 2006, it’s like the media have simply forgotten the events of 18 months back. Harper is polished and on message, if not still more than a little robotic. The Liberal war room is in disarray, stumbling from one mistake to the next. We’ll probably have a Conservative government on Monday the 24th, be it minority or majority.
And what’s changed? Nothing. It’s the same leaders. More than 90% of all incumbents are running again. the policies are exactly the same as they were 18 months ago. Policy is what matters, and it’s all completely and utterly unchanged. The Liberals are still the centrist big-tent party (and if you want to abandon your current party, more power to you) and the Tories are the same “campaign to the centre, govern to the deep right” OldWhiteMen that they were before. Nothing has changed about the choice we make in a few days’ time. And yet the media’s all over the fact that these two candidates, the parties, the policies, are radically different.
I expected more, I guess.