What Just Happened?

Election 2019 Edition

News | by Stephen Whitworth

It doesn’t seem like four years since the last time Canadians voted in a federal election. It feels like two, tops. But calendars don’t lie, unless we’re all simulations in a technologically advanced civilization’s massively multiplayer online role-playing game, in which case my memories are fake and I probably didn’t exist 10 minutes ago.

Thinking about that makes my head hurt, so I’m just gonna act like it’s 2019 and we all go to the polls in less than two weeks to hopefully not elect another goddamn Conservative government. On that note, here’s a special edition of What Just Happened looking back at the last four years.

BYE, FELICIA

Who can forget the sheer bliss of election night 2015, when Canadians punted the extradimensional horror that was Stephen Harper back into his formless nightmare abyss? Frankly, I think we’ve all forgotten, because the last four years has been absolutely packed with political shenanigans that saw new levels of divisiveness in public discourse. But if I stretch my (possibly manufactured) memory hard enough, I can still recall standing in a pub in 2015 watching the news that Canada would have a new Liberal government. It was a night when everyone in the joint, Liberal, NDP or Green (Conservatives weren’t allowed in pubs in those days), stood together to cheer the end of a shit era marked by relentless Conservative hostility toward scientists, teachers, journalists, activists, universities, the environment, public infrastructure, arts and culture… pretty much everything I value (heyyy maybe this is a simulation created for the experience of the being operating me as its avatar!).

Anyway: good times!

POTHEAD NATION

It seems hard to believe now that the assholes have figured out they can make money off it, but one of the Harper government’s signature policy positions was its banana-pants hatred of marijuana legalization. Don’t get me wrong: the Conservative party is incomprehensively clueless on an entire spectrum of issues, ranging from same-sex marriage (they opposed it) to carbon taxes (they either don’t believe in climate change or don’t care) to invading Iraq (they desperately wanted to drag us into that demented shitshow) to sex education (Conservatives lack genitals) to insert your favourite dimwitted/evil conservative policy/ideology here.

But the Conservative war on weed was just so obviously doomed to fail that it still baffles me they fought it.

That said, Andrew Scheer and his gang probably think the potheads have forgotten what a total buzzkill Conservatives were, and they’re probably right. But you know, maybe when you stoners vote this time, you could peer through the bong-fog and recall which political party fought the hardest against any and all fact-based drug policy? And vote accordingly? Pleeease?

Canadian politics doesn’t need four years of Reefer Madness 2: Opiate Crisis Boogaloo.

ELECTORAL DEFORM

Remember when Trudeau promised electoral reform, then bailed? Ugh. If he loses to Andrew “U.S. Citizen” Scheer on Oct. 21, it’ll be karma. I mean, yeah, awful karma that we’ll all suffer under. But still, he’ll probably be sad, too. Oh well, at least we got legal weed, a semi-functional Inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and, hey! A real carbon tax that every conservative provincial government in the country has rallied against because today’s conservative parties are greedy, hyper-partisan, corporate-stoogy environment-hating thugs! Where’s Joe Clark? Shit, where’s Brian Mulroney?

AND IN CONCLUSION

There’s been many worse four-year stretches than the current Trudeau span. I’ll take my lumps from another four, if that’s an option.

But you know, one of these days, maybe we could do better?

I’m pretty skeptical of his caucus-managing skills and his ability to deliver on the great stuff he says, but I’ve heard a lot of politicians make a lot less sense on the campaign trail than Jagmeet Singh. Maybe some of you could toss a few votes his way?

Not in Ralph Goodales’ riding, obviously. I mean, come on.