Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Election Day

If you're reading this and you're in Canada, go vote.

I have to admit I'm a little jealous of the Canadian system. They have strict limitations on spending, and relatively short campaign seasons (the longest, according to wikipedia, was 74 days. And, until recently, they didn't have set dates for the election itself, just a five-year "sell-by" date.

That last I think works in their favor, and against us in the US. The nature of the fixed election days seem to poison the act of government, such that economic plans are not aimed at long-term growth, but just making sure that everything doesn't go sour before the next big election. Indeed, the "October Surprise" this year seems to be that the economy cratered so badly BEFORE the election, despite efforts to reduce and/or hide the damage (Our fundamentals, as you know, are strong).

The Canadian political landscape is different as well. A friend in Canada once told me that the Conservatives are like our Moderate Democrats and the Liberals are like our Progressive Democrats. The New Democrats, on the other hand, operate in a temporal/spacial zone that cannot be comprehended by we in the Lower 48. And then there's Quebec, which is their own particular cross to bear. Hey, you can't have everything.

So if you're in Canada, go vote. Then, regardless of your political persuasion, you can light up a cigar, grab a snifter of brandy, sit on the back porch, listen to the loons, and chuckle at us poor Yankee sods.

More later,