Was that a referendum or popularity poll?

"Okay, we all know that every party flies the 'accountability' flag when it suits them."

 

Okay, now that it’s too late to influence the vote on the HST, it’s time to comment on one of the arguments that was used against the tax.

This is one of those catch-all sound bites that politicians love, and is possibly the most unintelligent political statement of our time. It is the silly notion that we should use our vote to ‘hold the government accountable’. Heaven forbid we should approach an issue, (or an election for that matter), with an open mind, discuss and debate, and then come to an informed decision, yea or nay. Instead, according to these purveyors of silliness, we should ignore the issue at hand and vote just to vent and get back at those cutthroats and scoundrels in Victoria.

Okay, we all know that every party flies the ‘accountability’ flag when it suits them.  That would be while they are in opposition, of course. And it makes perfect sense that, in this case, NDP or Green supporters would really be tempted to buy in. But what surprises me is the huge number of voters that actually did. It doesn’t matter what the party preference might be, to ignore the issue and vote NO just because you are a Liberal supporter or to ignore the issue and vote YES just because you are an NDP supporter totally destroys any value in holding a referendum in the first place. What is much worse, however, is the ‘accountability’ voter who is blinded by their emotions and recklessly casts a vote with no purpose in mind other than to spank the government.

“We’re going to show them.”

Perhaps we should all be reminded from time to time that along with our democratic right to vote comes a serious responsibility to exercise that right in a thoughtful and informed manner. And dare I say it? ‘With a little wisdom perhaps’.

The issue was HST or NO HST. The issue was not Liberal behaviour, Green Party righteousness, NDP dogma, Campbell, James, Dix, Clark or even that noisy Dutch guy. A good question to ask today is, did we just have an HST referendum or a popularity poll?

Kevin Sass

Hemlock Valley