Resisting the pull of cynicism since 1969.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

"Verkiezingsmoe", and the view from down south

There's a terrific word in the Dutch language: verkiezingsmoe. It means, essentially, "sick and tired of elections."

Do I really need to elaborate on that?

Anyway, you can take it as an excuse for why I haven't been blogging more. Although as of tomorrow, I'll be blogging my local Edmonton-Strathcona race in particular and the Edmonton races in general for democraticspace.com, so while you're not terribly likely to hear much federal-level commentary from me this year, those who have been missing me will be able to follow my local-level commentary over there. (There's a real race this year, people! Yes, a real race, in Edmonton! And arguably even two!)

#

There's not a lot of coverage of Canadian politics in the U.S. news, and what there is usually gets my back up because it tends to range from horribly unnuanced to just plain false. But this Slate piece is a great and surprisingly in-depth look (for a piece that short) at what the heck is so wrong with our political system that we're having our third federal election in four years. Nearly every bit of it is true. Sadly.

[And I only say "nearly" because of the line about "Italians and Israelis may have learned how to function under minority governments, but Canadians are still working on it." I have two quibbles with that. A factual quibble: Italians and Israelis actually don't tend to have minority governments, they tend to have often non-functional majority coalition governments. An ideological quibble: the reference to Italy and Israel in a discussion of coalition governments is annoyingly typical and tiresome when you consider the fact that most of the democratic world has perfectly functional majority coalition governments. But the rest of the piece is great, really.]

8 comments:

Mark Greenan said...

There's a Dutch word that essentially mean "sick and tired of elections".

No way! I never know Dutch was so cool.

Idealistic Pragmatist said...

Mark,

Oh, don't even get me started! It's the coolest language ever! *g*

Anonymous said...

"A factual quibble:"
"An ideological quibble:"

These aren't quibbles. These were major weaknesses in a rather superficial article.

But...Huzzah! America noticed us! In SLATE!!!

West End Bob said...

Not to disagree with "Anonymous", but I didn't find the article superficial at all. Quite fact-filled for it's brevity, and worth spreading around. If you don't mind, IP, I'm linking to you and it.

PS: Another great day spent volunteering in the Vancouver Centre riding for Michael Byers. Go Orange . . . .

Idealistic Pragmatist said...

Go you, Bob! If only every new immigrant got this involved in the political scene from day one. You're an inspiration.

Josh G said...

Let's not forget the Dutch colour, though - orange!

Idealistic Pragmatist said...

Josh,

Ha! Good one. *g*

West End Bob said...

Aww, shucks, IP.

'Yer makin' me blush, ma'am . . . .