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Dude

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Anyone catch them?

I turned them on for a 90 minutes yesterday, and switched back and forth. For me, right now, the US election has as much or more relevance than ours, simply for the mess they find themselves in. Their mess will be our mess. Hope to hell this bail-out goes through.

As for Palin & Biden, nothing rivetting came from either, and both for padering like crazy to the american middle class. It got very tiresomme, as the obvious theme was deflecting blame for the sub-prime / wall street crisis, and portraying a position of both being on the side of the "Average American Citizen". Honestly, very dumbed down, no real issues.

I found ours to be much more lively as the candidates discussed real issues.

IMHO, the big loser was Stephane Dion, literally turning to the camera and pleading with Canadians: "Do not belive this man!". This was after Harper called him on his pledge that he would not raise taxes, and that their own platform called for a net tax base increase. Harper caught him with misdirection, as Dion was unclear in his statement that he would not raise taxes.

Harper: I found him unspectacular, but composed, relaxed, yet able to defend his and his party's position just fine. To me he came accross as a realist.

Jack Layton was- as always- charismatic, and a great debator. He's not above taking cheap shots, but made a gaff when he called out Harper for taking a cheap shot. In defense of himself in the face of the others beating him up about the implementation of private clinics, Harper had stated he was the only one of everyone sitting at the table to not use a private clinic. By their collective defensive reaction, it was clear he had them. That being said, Layton did the best job of clearly pointing out the flaws in the Concervative platform, and pointing out the dangers- from an NDP point of view- of electing them as majority.

Gilles Duceppe...came accross a hell of a lot better than his francophone buddy Dion. Makes you question if the Torries or Libs will win anything in Quebec. Duceppe will be a factor.

Elizabeth May impressed me the most, because she is showing some real forward thinking. The issues of reneuable energy, and the economic impact of that sector should be debated further. I frankly think the Concervatives would be best having her running shotgun as the new Minister of Environment. She showed an outstanding understanding of the bio-mass industry worldwide, and what it can potentially mean to Canada by moving forward with strong initiatives to encourage producers to switch to bio-mass systems. I feel that a plan of action that combines the Conservative approach w/ the Green Party agenda of alternative and reneuable energy would be the economic boost the country needs.

BC as a Province is actually showing leadership in this area, by tightening emmissions standards & penalties in rural areas, while promoting the "ICE Fund" (Innovative Clean Energy Fund) to the greenhouse community. This approach is not much different than a combined Concervative / Green approach would look like. You bring in stiff penalties for high emmitions, while providing tax breaks and funding for those producers willing to invest in converting to a low emmission bio-fuel system.

As for the rest of the issues, like medicare. Predictably, they all piled on Harper with the private clinic issue, while again the answer is sitting in a combined approach. We have a serious medical shortage here, with a brain drain of doctors and nurses. Nobody disputes that. But, for all the political maneuvering, there is a place for the private clinics, so long as they are complementing the system, not draining it.

To do that we need to- as Dion pointed out- encourage students to get into medicine, and forgive part or all of their student loans in exchange for a commitment to Canada for 10 years. Personally, I feel if we're going to forgive the whole portion of the loan, the commmitment needs to be more like 20 years. Plus, we need to look at ensuring these doctors and nurses are being compensated competitively as compared to the rest of the world.

Anyhow, my opinions asside...thoughts?
 

The_Reverend

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I agree with you that Elizabeth May was outstanding. Her points were very detailed and articulate but didn't use "highbrow" language - it was very accessible. She also demonstrated that she was well-versed in a wide range of issues. I think she explained the Liberal's carbon tax better than Dion could, including why it makes such economic sense in terms of both productivity and environmental concerns. Which makes sense as it is something the Green party has been advocating for some time now. I think she managed to show people that the Green party is not a fringe, hippy party. It's interesting that most of the people who will vote for it would probably normally vote Liberal (maybe NDP), especially considering as it is really another conservative style platform, for the most part. They believe in a more free-market system than the Liberals but I don't think they are socially conservative enough (another kettle altogether) to take much support from the Conservatives. Too bad...

I don't think Dion did too bad. He adequately explained his party's policies and took it out of Harper pretty decently. Also, he was a pretty gentlemanly debater - not much into interrupting his opponents (Jack Layton). Part of his problem is he is not a good English speaker and has a speech impediment (due to a medical problem I think) to make it worse. The consensus was he did well in the French debates (I don't speak French well enough to have watched it though) and I think he did ok here too. Not as well as Elizabeth May, but good enough to win him some votes.

You have to hand it to Jack Layton. He really thinks he can get enough people to switch from both the Conservatives and the Liberals to become the next prime minister. He made some valid points and was very composed - though I agree on the "cheap shot" comment - he should have stated the reasoning for his use of a private clinic. Many Canadians do, so that wouldn't have hurt him much. He was definitely like a junkyard dog - attacking both the Liberal party and the Conservative party, though in the former case, to me it seemed a bit glib to do, and hypocritical in some cases - it was Jack and the NDP that helped the conservatives collapse the last Liberal government.

Duceppe - well, not sure why he even bothers - what do we in bc (and alberta, sask, man, ont, nb, ns, pei, nfld, nunavet, yukon and nwt) give a sh*t about what he is going to do in Quebec? Like really, he even made the point that he won't be the next prime minister. It would be better to have the leader of the Natural Law party (yogic flying anyone) part of the debate - or maybe the Rhinos - be more interesting....

As for Harper - I thought he did not do well at all. He can't look at the camera - vis-a vis the voters in the eye. He had a smirk on his face the whole time and took the whole debate as if the election was a foregone conclusion and he was winning his majority. He answered most of the questions with a "I don't give a fukc" attitude and actually really didn't respond directly to a lot of the points. He is the only Prime Minister (or premier for that matter) that I just want to punch in the face. That's the way he makes me feel. I don't even want to do that to Gordan Campbell and I hate him and his government - though I'm not enamoured of the NDP either. I think he probably showed his disrespect and uncaring to the public in this debate (apparently did that in the French debate too). I really don't want a conservative government again, especially a majority.

From this debate, I'd want a Green party leader and government - too bad none of them has any experience. It would also be nice to be able to vote for a leader separately from the party (i.e. like a republic). That way you could vote for the strongest leader (in my mind May, maybe Layton), and vote for the best party for your ideals and ability to field a functioning government (in my mind Liberals - though the Conservatives without Harper may be ok).

I didn't see too much of the VP debate from the states (soccer practice), but my wife hates Palin. Makes for interesting home conversation because I don't like Obama (I know, I know, Biden was up against Palin, but he's only a running mate). Obama is too superior acting for me - and that is how I always am too, so that's pretty bad.
 

Dude

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Harper didn't quite come accross that way to me, but then, I'm on the concervative side. I just found him to be cool and composed, and you have to be, with Jayton trying to wind everyone up. But, I can see how it could be perceived as arrogance.

I tell you one thing- Tina Fey did one hell of a good impression, in hindsight! I didn't see her coming out speach, but after watching that "debate", gotta say...put Tina Fey in there, and you won't see much difference. Better legs and ass on Tina Fey.

Totally agree with your shout on republic style voting. Also, my pie-in-the-sky wish would be for Harper (as I'm fairly confident he'll get in again, likely w/ a slim majority) to name Elizabeth May as the new Minister for Environment (assuming she wins her riding), or to a position where she could excersis her forward thinking. That won't happen, but it does make the most sense.
 

johnnybluenose

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Don't let your personal politics cloud your assessment of how the debate went reverend :rolleyes:

I don't care whether personally you are a Conservative, Liberal, NDP'er Commie, or Green Party Hippy, I didn't see the debate but saw clips and spots of it, and never once did I think Harper looked glib or disinterested or aloof.

and both Layton and Dion are lying wankers ;) (Aren't they all? :D)
 

the-impersonator

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Jack Layton was on my flight back from Ottawa last year. What an egotistical jerk. He was just hanging with his entourage (in first class I may add)....I remember saying to the rest of the off the passengers...."Hey Jack, if your really the people guy why aren't you sitting in the back in coach with the rest of us!".......I see our tax dollars hard at work!...... and in the airport off the flight talking so loud because he wanted everyone to hear him. "I tell ya Sally, I remember 6 years ago they said we wouldn't amount to anything....look us now Sally, look at us now!!"

Dion makes me want to puke....what a disgrace.

People don't realize how good we have it with Harper.
 

girth

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Sounds like he's not very good to fly with? Did you help "Jack Off" when the flight was finished. I'd bet you did!
 

italian_stallion21

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How I thought it went:

May, Layton, Dion, Harper, Duceppe. I also loved how everyone made fun of Harper's sweater commercials. I think everyone thinks that the political party of their choice's leader did good, bias does that. There are points and counter-points to every single statement made, and by mishmashing everyone's policies together you could actually have a pretty good platform, but obviously that will never happen.
 

Tuna

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let's try to keep it that way. i'd rather hear the real issues rather than see all the pomp and circumstance.
 

girth

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let's try to keep it that way. i'd rather hear the real issues rather than see all the pomp and circumstance.

Very true! The States has to "Super Bowl" everything! All that was missing was Pallin flashing her nipple stars like Janet Jackson .:D
 

Dude

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I didn't think it looked low budget at all, just different. I liked the round table discussion format.
 

The_Reverend

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i liked the round table better as well... and there was a lot more actual content in the Canadian debate....so i heard at least:rolleyes:

And as IS21 said, everyone's personal bias goes into assessing how the candidates performed in the debate - it's human nature. and my human nature states that harper is a slimy, arrogant bastard who will wreak havoc on the policies of Canada and destroy her international (and national) identity if he wins a majority!:mad:
 

Dude

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Classic!
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6XprQILQTk]YouTube - Cold Open -- Stephane Dion vs Stephen Harper[/ame]
 

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