Let’s turn our attention to the Quebec election. My comment is about Sunday's debate and its possible effects on the electorate. Here is the summary: The effect is probably marginal, and it is at the margins where one is likely to see most effects. The big “winner,” should there be a need to declare one, is the one leader least likely to emerge as the premier of that province in the Sept. 4 election.
Each year, I begin my Introduction to Canadian politics course at Laurier by describing the prisoner’s dilemma.
In this model, two men, Bob and Jack are arrested for drug trafficking. They are put into separate rooms and are told the following:
“If you testify against your partner, and he stays silent, you go free and your partner gets 10 years.
If your partner talks and you stay silent, then you get 10 years and he goes free.
If you both talk, you both get 8 years.
Author: Geoffrey Stevens
Published August 20, 2012, in Waterloo Region Record.
It’s been nearly two weeks since Dalton McGuinty called provincial byelections for Kitchener-Waterloo and for Vaughan. At this stage, no one, frankly, can predict what is going to happen.
Opinion polls about national unity issues are often troublesome. Here is one by Abacus that suggests that while a slim majority of non-Quebecers want Quebec to remain in Canada, a quarter would vote to kick out the province. The basis for either lukewarm support for Quebec or hard-edged opposition to the province stems from a perception of extra-favourable treatment, as if Quebec were a spoiled child of the Canadian family.
Author: Geoffrey Stevens
Published August 14, 2012, in Waterloo Region Record.
Conrad Black speaks at a luncheon at the Empire Club in Toronto on June 22, 2012. Columnist Geoffry Stevens wonders how a Lt Gov Black would make his mark on Ontario. The editors at The Telegram, the daily newspaper in St. John’s, N.L., had a bright idea.
As you can tell, I’ve been reading Peter Aucoin et al’s book, Democratizing the Constitution, over the summer and have really enjoyed it. Like any good book, it provokes important discussion and debate.
One of the strengths of the book is its analysis of prorogation, a most welcome and timely analysis given the events in Canada over the last four years.
On page 224, they write:
Author: Geoffrey Stevens.
Published August 11th, 2012 in Waterloo Region Record.
The two byelections being held on Sept. 6, in Kitchener-Waterloo and in the suburban Toronto riding of Vaughan, are much more than a routine exercise in filling a couple of vacant Legislature seats.