quebec elections

by Hugh

Interesting outcome in the Quebec election. The woeful centre/right liberals get a minority government, and the big news: the fresh-faced righties ADQ get official opposition, while the PQ gets a lickin. Patrick asks: who’s afraid of the ADQ (and why?).

We’ll see what happens. I don’t know what to think. I’ll have lots to complain about, but maybe this will shake Quebec up in some good (and certainly some bad) ways.

It seems to me that quebec politics has stagnated badly in the past … well … I don’t know how long. part of the “problem” is that politics & parties have been dominated by one central issue federalist/seperatism, which means that other important issues take a back seat. (probably less true in franco world).

but surely no one can be happy with the state of the province’s politics now, whether you are left/right or sep/fed. we have BOTH a crumbling health system AND the highest taxes anywhere in North America (I’d take 2 if 1 was a shining example of success, but it isn’t). Our eductaion system is a disaster, with 50%+ highschool drop out rate. universities choking with tuition freezes. we have the highest unemployment rates in Canada. the GDP is 54 out of 60 states/provinces in north america (wtf?)! smaller than arkansas.

we also have – in montreal at least, a thriving art scene, and a fantastic standard of living. partly due to a sluggish economy, that keeps rents low, which for my money is the best way to have a thriving art scene.

anyway: I’m as hard core lefty as you can get, usually, but I just cannot believe having 30% (? – not sure the number, but its twice ontario) of the population working for the government is a good thing.

I mostly hate the Harper conservatives, but i like our current federal minority set-up. the Conservatives are forced to do deals with lefties (NDP and bloq) to get things done, which is great. You get the hard-nosed approach of the right, kept in check by the left. good. (For instance, the Harper govt was pretty ballsy on the Income Trust issue, something the federal liberals were woeful on).

Here in que, though, the PQ was the big loser, so you’ve now got a centre-right Lib minority, with a right-wing ADQ opposition, so there will be a big shake up in quebec, one way or another. A big shift to the right in political power.

I’m not right-wing by any stretch, but I’m happy to see something that might shake up the political mud we’ve been in for the past decade or so. We’ll see where it goes. as usual, I’m cautiously unpessimistic.

SOME OTHER THOUGHTS FROM THE B’SPHERE (to be updated as they come in):