Walk a Kb or Two in my Moccasins- Nobody 'splained it to me like that!

Simple answers to Complex Questions and Complex Answers to Simple Questions. In real life, I'm a Greater-Toronto (Canada) Realtor with RE/MAX Hallmark Realty Ltd, Brokerage. I first joined RE/MAX in 1983 and was first Registered to Trade in Real Estate in Ontario in 1974. Formerly known as "Two-Finger Ramblings of a Forensic Acuitant turned Community Synthesizer"

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- Philosopher King of Real Estate Business in Ontario (self-assessed)
- Likes Public Policy & Governance Discussions
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Thursday, December 15, 2005

"Many a man in love with a dimple makes a mistake of marrying the whole girl". - Stephen Leacock

And the very human tendency to make that 'mistake' at the ballot box is the idea behind what the political pros call a "wedge" issue.

They identify one policy, one issue, one promised act or Act in the Parliament that divides the competing parties/persons into US and THEM.

The concept arises within a political system where almost all the political parties' views on almost all the issues overlap or occupy pretty much the same slice of the spectrum - mushy middle with some leftie parts and some other bits on the right.

The pros search to identify a point of discussion that is widely-held and little-discussed and make THAT issue into a pick-ONLY-us-to-get-that policy plank.

This election, say, Immigration-policy-that-seems-to-welcome-ne'er-do-wells, or maybe, the-courts-made-us-change-the-definition-of-marriage, to name but two. (and, lest we forget, there's always 'ol' reliable' my-taxes-are-too-darn-high-'cus-government-keeps-spending-it-on _____________ - but that brings the tally to three thousand).

Some folks feel verrrrry strongly about one side or another of this kind of issue , but they don't talk about it - except with their trusted friends (who hold the same view).

So when one party or person says at election time "If elected, I'll take your money and instead of doing what was originally planned for it when it was collected, I'll spend it on your-favourite-thing" , the folks whose 'favourite thing' is getting new funding say "Hey, this gal/guy is listening to me, nobody else is - I'm voting for him/her"

So along with the new funding (or just legislative attention) for the 'favourite thing', the voter also gets the bundle of promised favours that were promised to everybody else AND all the issues on the once-we-get-into-power agenda of the person/party who made the promise(s).

(Aside - Isn't it amazing that all this money can get 'found' or re-allocated at election time, but the rest of the time we're always in a budget squeeze?)

So let's say you like a personal tax credit for childcare, money military spending, and a re-look at the implications of the HomoSex marriage decisions.

You also get the Reform Party's Oil-&-Gas-fired Provincial-Autonomy agenda (they'd never have dreamt of it pre-Leduc).

The Reform Party v.3.0 has changed it's spots and swallowed it's parent, but is still just as much an Independence-for-OUR-province party as is the Bloc (watch and see, if Stevie gets minority status).

On the other hand, if you keep the devil-you-know, you get a party with Mr Dithers as Leader - a fellow whose excuse for 'not knowing' about the money going to the Sponsorship monkey-business, is to claim that the former party Leader (that he was laying intricate plans to oust) so mistrusted and disliked him, that Chretien kept Martin so far out of the loop (in Martin's dual capacities as Finance Minister AND as member of the supposed-to-be-supervisory, inner-sanctum-of-power Treasury Board) that he did not properly fulfill his responsibilities.

(The Treasury Board manages the government's financial, personnel, and administrative responsibilities. Considered the general manager and employer of the public service, it sets policy in these areas, examines and approves the proposed spending plans of government departments, and reviews the development of approved programs.)

(.... How much money will go to pay down the debt? How much to health care? Will there be more money for research and development? Will taxes go up or down?
The answers affect all Canadians, and they will be in that document, the budget. It’s a blueprint for how the Government wants to set the annual economic agenda for Canada. And it’s the job of the Department of Finance to prepare it.)

A very hard choice ... maybe it's better that most people vote based on TV ads rather than facts.

Leacock again "Advertising is the science of arresting the human intelligence long enough to get money from it"

Merry Christmas.

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