May Day: Workers of the World … Celebrate Quebec’s Election Results!

OK … maybe a bit much to expect workers of the entire world to rejoice in the recent Quebec election results … but certainly workers across Canada …coast to coast … should be happy on this May Day about the outcome.

It was a day I will not forget: there I was … out in the middle of the Atlantic, literally, on a cruise ship headed towards Europe … but being a news junkie, still checking in on the Internet to keep up with events at home.

Wow!  A Liberal majority in the Quebec vote! A resounding rout of the Parti Quebecois … with even Leader Pauline Marois sent packing.

Incroyable! Merveilleuse! Quelle bonne nouvelles!

And although my emotions were more of wonder, joy and even amusement … it was the reaction of a Francophone  Quebecois, about 60 years old, whom I had met a few days earlier on board I will always remember when I gave him the news:

“Robert, as tu entendu les nouvelles?,”  I inquired when I saw him on deck. “Les Liberaux ont gagne l’election: avec un majorite. Et Marois a perdu sa siege!.”

“Really?” he replied in English, “Really, Harvey?”   A BIG smile on his face!

“Oui…vraiment …je vien de le lire sur l”internet,” I repeated. “Un majorite pour les Liberaux! Et Marois est fini!”

A BIGGER smile from Robert.

“I’m just shaking,” he laughed. “We were so worried. I’m … how you say … shuddering …so good news?”

Yes, Robert was shuddering ..with unexpected joy.

Because he … and apparently most Quebecois ….  had realized more than most of the rest of us the tremendous implications we would have faced with a PQ majority victory … especially one built on division, racism, exclusion and, make no mistake about it, plans to develop a scenario for another referendum.

No pussy-footing around for them; no faux support for intolerance in the name of cultural preservation; no sympathy for shallow outsiders who thought it fashionable to turn their backs and say nothing about the excesses of the PQ’s anti-ethnic agenda: instead a hard realization of the reality that yet another dance with xenophobia and separatism would have brought working Quebecois.

The impact of all … or any of that …on the Quebec economy, on the Canadian economy, on investments, on the dollar, on interest rates and ultimately on the jobs of working people in this country, from coast to coast would have been “negative” at least and “disastrous” at worst.

Just imagine the uncertainty had the PQ achieved a majority and adopted its racist rules, ramped up its anti-Ottawa rhetoric, stirred up political nationalist Quebec demonstrations, and actively manipulated all kinds of issues in search of a “winning” formula for another referendum.


The Quebecois majority said “Non” and we should under-estimate the importance of the recent vote.

It’s game over for any separatist agenda for at least a generation: the PQ had been counting on its outrageous xenophobic agenda winning majority support in rural and even small urban areas off the island of Montreal, up north and in the eastern parts of the province … especially among the old-fart bigots I have written about previously.

Indeed, the pre-election polls showed they had their support.

BUT what the PQ had not foreseen was that YOUNGER Quebecois, everywhere in the province,  ARE changing: they are better educated, more sophisticated than their parents, grandparents; they no longer fear people of other ethnicities, other colours, other faiths; they are learning and speaking English without fear of losing their culture; they travel more; and, they … like their counterparts throughout the rest of the country … are less concerned about raging against turbans, skullcaps and Muslims.

Yes, even increasing numbers of older educated Quebecois rejected the PQ scare tactics and divisive messages.

And they voted!

For the Quebec economy!   For their families’ futures! For jobs!

And this May Day … all Canada’s workers are benefitting from  the actions of their Quebecois brothers and sisters.

Harv Oberfeld

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23 Responses to May Day: Workers of the World … Celebrate Quebec’s Election Results!

  1. nonconfidencevote says:

    Ahhh the “repositioning cruise” eh? My sister went on that one last year. Texted me on my birthday from the exact center of the Atlantic Ocean. Technology never ceases to amaze me.
    Anywho, I just finished billeting a 20 year old Quebec kid heading north to tree plant for the summer.
    He said the exact same thing. The Seperatists are a bunch of old, bigots completely out of touch with their electorate.
    What surprised me was how Pierre Pelideau could have read the voters so totally wrong.
    A sleazy opportunist in my books.
    Either way, this will hopefully keep these elitist snobs back in their closets for at least 10 more years.

    (Response: Your sister must have a good deal of affection for you …judging by what they charge for satellite Internet on cruise ships! As for Peladeau … I will have more to say about that creep in a future blog … I’m just warming up! h.o)

  2. Barry says:

    Yes Harve, this was good news. Nice to see most Quebecers could see through the selfish and obnoxious PQ platform.

    It gives me hope the next federal election will deliver a good stiff boot to Harper et all. He hasn’t been above using invective to get his way and get elected.

    After all, if the TFW controversy, senators acting badly, science denial, attempts to rig the electoral system and other problems aren’t enough to blow away any questions about his competence, then my optimism is misplaced.

    (Response: I have no doubt Canadians are tiring of Harper ..and columnist Andrew Coyne had a really good piece in The Sun the other day about all the failures/bumbles/stumbles by Harper and his government. Things ARE ripe for change…and a recent poll showed Mulcair leading both the Libs and Tories in Quebec….but nowhere else in the country. His challenge will be to convince the rest of Canada that he’s not just a Quebec politician, who will always put Quebec’s interests over those of any other province. And then, there’s Trudeau … still not ready for prime time, in my view. h.o)

  3. e.a.f. says:

    well it was about bloody time, the election results and your return to writing. welcome back!

    Trust the holiday went well. There is all sorts of things to write about. Looking forward to your articles. Why is Ms. Watts not running? Is there a third new party about to appear on the provincial horizon, etc.

    It is good news that the P.Q. was sent stage right. The “values” position was simply so un Canadian we would have looked like some of those nations we protest about. The P.Q. simply got greedy. They had a government, but they wanted more. In the end, they wound up with nothing. Looks good on them and hope other governments pay attention.

    Excluding people from jobs because of their religion was just a bit too far out there for Quebecers and they did the right thing. They sent Madame packing. It may have also been her willingness to embrace some one as a “star” candidate, whose principles were far different than many who supported the P.Q.

    (Response: You’re right on. The PQ thought they were still dealing with the Quebec of 20 to 40 years ago: they were wrong. Talk about FAILING to keep it real! As for Watts, I suspect she has federal ambitions …but in politics, like comedy, timing is important. Watch for her to deliver her punch line AFTER she leaves the Mayor’s post. h.o)

  4. Jason Angulo says:

    Welcome back, Harv. Sounds like you had a nice holiday.

    Out of your whole blog entry, this is the best part right here… “Et Marois est fini!”

    That one small sentence, easily translated to English, says it all, non?

    (Response: Exactly. The degree of loss …including the leader failing to hold even her own seat …had not been predicted in ANY poll or discussion I ever saw/heard/read. Quebec voters spoke LOUD and CLEAR … it’s the economy and jobs the current generation(s) care about: the old dreams of Gilles Vigneault and others from that era were totally repudiated. h.o)

  5. Larry Bennett says:

    Well, being a Quebecer, I guess the election was really a big thing for you, but I am still revelling in the political graft and chicanery, that has hit, largely, on the left and the sanctimonious, you know, like Jenny and the DES poverty pimps. And as for Mulcair, he still seems to believe in judge made law, and to Hell with those put forward by the people’s elected government. And haven’t the so-called Robo-calls all been dis-proven? It seems to me that Mr. Mulcair stands trembling at the threshold of Paradise, a Paradise that he will be denied.
    As for Peladeau, well, we’ll still have SunMedia and Ezra and Brian and those young conservative chicks.

    (Response: In terms of what’s really important …the future of the nation and the impact a PQ victory would have had ….I think I chose a better topic for my first blog back. But I do agree Mulcair still has a very long way to go before he should start planning to redecorate 24 Sussex. h.o)

  6. morry says:

    Harvey. … believe it or not. but i was not in the least surprised by the results. i have been saying that the tide in Quebec has been changing for over 10 years now. I see it and smell it every time i have visited Montreal.
    happy voyaging!

    (Response: Yes, but Montreal is not Quebec: in fact, the entire island of Montreal, with all its suburbs, has often been an election anomaly …voting quite differently provincially and federally from most of the rest of the province, especially the north ad the east. What changed this time is that so many voters elsewhere voted the same way as les Montrealais. h.o)

  7. kootcoot says:

    “And haven’t the so-called Robo-calls all been dis-proven? “

    Sorry Larry, but “lack of evidence” in an investigation where the investigator had no power to compel witnesses or obtain documents that the government of Il Duce Harper refused to provide while refusing to co-operate in any manner possible doesn’t exactly prove innocence. If you recall the same crew of thugs protested their innocence in the “in and out” scandal for five years until then, as quietly as possible, the Conservative Party plead guilty and paid a token fine of $78,000!

    This is comparable to the situation in which I was a serial killer, and kept all the corpses I created in my basement. If the police were unable to get a warrant to search my basement, it wouldn’t make me innocent, but they certainly couldn’t prove I was the serial killer, either if they didn’t have the power to compel me to give them a tour of the basement.

  8. marge says:

    Re this comment:Andrew Coyne had a really good piece in The Sun the other day about all the failures/bumbles/stumbles by Harper and his government.

    Are you aware that his cousin is a Liberal MP and he might, just might, be a bit biased. She is also the mother of Pierre Trudeau’s youngest child.

    (Response: I find Andrew Coyne to be generally very accurate, fair and credible. And if you don’t trust his analysis, I suggest you also read April 28 Vancouver Sun Michael Den Tandt’s even harder look at Harper’s bumbles, stumbles and fumbles. h.o)

  9. Larry Bennett says:

    kootcoot – Surely you mean your mom’s basement? And have you ever really left long enough to do anything memorable?
    Marge, you’re on the right track, and just because Harv thinks Coyne and Den Tandt give credible and accurate, and especially – fair commentary, you must first realize that Harve has never been conservative in any way, shape, or form – though he hasn’t a great love for the others either, it is just that Mr. Harper comes across a little too Gentile, too Christian and too Anglo for his liking.

  10. MRT says:

    Whoa Larry, what an insulting statement.

    Your very own mouth condems you.

  11. 13 says:

    Great to see “read ” you again Harvey.
    The troubles that have been averted in Quebec are to many to list. Repeat the mantra ITS ALL ABOUT THE ECONOMY. We have avoided another Quebec driven dollar devaluation.

    If you repeat the mantra you might see why the right leaning crowd might be prepared to overlook the foibles and fumbles of the PCs and Harper. People more and more see the platforms of the left as very expensive dreams that can only be funded by increased taxation.
    Having said that every election these days is less and less predictable. Be nice to see Moonbeam join Marois at the unemployment job board

    (Res[ponse: speaking of the mayotr, my travels took me to Barceolona, Seville, Rome, etc. ….LOTS of bike lanes, bike use. Great! But NOWHERE did I see so many concrete barriers, esp the wide Berlin wall like Vision built down Hornby Street north of Georgia … instead just small lane separators or half concrete circles along the pavement, like the top half of an imbedded car tire, to separate vehicle lanes from bike lanes, leaving lots of room in between for people to cross; get picked up etc. and NOWHERE did I notice the myriad of No left turns, no right turns, no going straight ahead (Helmcken), no westbound cars at all (Comox)like Vision has done to persecute car drivers downtown . Maybe that’s why bikes and cars get along so well together in these other places, where co-operation and consideration works BNOTH ways. Now there’s a thought Robertson et al might want to consider….but of course will not. h.o)

  12. Hawgwash says:

    Welcome home Harvey; the 7 week withdrawal was a bit brutal.

    I think the QC results were a big relief to most Canadians. Not because we don’t want to see them go if that’s what they really want but because we are sick and tired of the constant threat of having to pay a huge alimony. It seems most of those who voted felt the same way. The old guard BC NDP should take note.

    I don’t see Dianne Watts going Federal unless there is some high profile, prominent position in play. I doubt she is a Harperite. Moving from BC to obscurity doesn’t fit her aspirations and who wants to be another Kim Campbell? It would disappoint a lot of locals.

    If you are so tortured by Harvey those who visit why come to the party? Man, you must be fun to live with.

    (Response: Sorry for the withdrawal! Good to be back in Vancouver …and blogging again and giving people a forum to comment, agree, disagree, and discuss. But I sure do enjoy travelling much more often than I used to, as a benefit of being retired. h.o)

  13. Hawgwash says:

    “People more and more see the platforms of the left as very expensive dreams that can only be funded by increased taxation.”

    You are right when you say “people see.” Really though some people are blind while others only “see” what they want to.

    BC under the Campbell Clark Expedition, has seen taxation far exceeded anything the left has done. People just don’t “see” it because it’s not called taxes. Fees, surcharges, tolls, rate hikes and service cuts (aka taxes) are the words of the right. Ask most seniors what they “see”.

  14. kootcoot says:

    “kootcoot – Surely you mean your mom’s basement? And have you ever really left long enough to do anything memorable?”

    As usual Larry, you didn’t actually address the issue but instead tried to promulgate the idea that an almost seventy year old man lives in his mom’s basement, when my mom’s only real estate is her grave, which is a basement of sorts I guess, but I don’t hang out there. Frankly, where I may or may not live has nothing to do with the ongoing assault on democracy that Stephen Harper (your hero, apparently) is currently proceeding with.

    The actual issue is that just because Harper and his henchmen (the boys in short pants) could refuse to testify or produce documentation, idjits like you consider that an acquittal, which it is not.

    Once upon a time politicians resigned over matters of ethics or possible criminality. Nowadays they just appoint an “oh so special prosecutor” to clear their name, or if they can just stonewall the investigators. But for sheep like yourself, as long as someone Gordon Campbell, Christy Clark or Stephen Harper appoints says everything is alright, you buy the bullshit.

    If somebody was actually empowered to dig up breaches of the public trust or other legal and/or ethical lapses with our present set of politicos and insist the perps resign (if not go to jail) we would have to replace the bulk of MLAs, MPs and premiers and Prime Ministers.

    Fascism is good for business………………..and can only exist due to the peoples ignorance and lack of attention paid. RMY

  15. r says:

    Vive le Canada!

  16. Alex says:

    Larry, you and your other “god squaders”, need to take some Ovaltine, and rest your head for awhile.

  17. Larry Bennett says:

    kootcoot – You are losing your sense of humour in your old age. Take a deep breath man! Or perhaps, as “Alex” suggests, have a nice cuppa Ovaltine – Hell, I know some god squaders who have actually had Ecce Homos (depictions of Christ during his scourging at the pillar) tattooed on their chest. This is supposed to show their devotion – you may know others like them.
    Oh, and kootcoot, it seems to be the Left that’s being caught with their fingers in the cookie jar of late.
    MRT – Insulting to whom? To you? We all have our biases, and I’m sure Harve would agree. For instance, even were I a bit of a liberal (in its original meaning) I would never have approved (let alone support) a woman who left her husband for another woman. But then, I wouldn’t be too approving of a man who leaves his wife for another woman. Only a real man can love the woman he married, for life!
    When I was a young buck, I generally thought of Jews as being mostly leftists (history would prove it) after all, wasn’t the kibbutz just a Jewish/socialist wet-dream? But I soon found that most of the writers I preferred (who were more and more evident in W.F.B.’s National Review); were Jewish! The mag is still a favourite, though it hasn’t the sense of humour it had when Buckley ran the show. “r”, you said it, what a lucky land we were born into.
    P.S. Still looking for my Rosetta Stone, so as to comment on whatever Hawgwash said.

  18. 13 says:

    Hawgwash what I “see” is an electorate that has had enough of taxes. I “see” an electorate that is not going to support social enginering. I cant understand quotas that stipulate women and gays and minorities ahead of qualified males.

    But What I see doesnt have to jive with whatever it is you see. Ive said it before rose coloured glasses tend to distort reality

  19. 13 says:

    I suppose under an NDP regime fees would dissappear. No tolls no msp no license fees, no service cuts. Utopia for sure. Not only no fees but our personal income taxes would stay as low or even get lower.We could build bigger and better hospitals. We could educate everyone with free tuition at all levels. We could fix moonbeams homeless problem. No pipelines no mining no shipping anything to China that will create any greenhouse problems. Ahh I can hardly .

  20. Scotty on Denman says:

    I recall some saying Quebec was essentially racist and Marois’ Badge of Secular Retardation proved it. Having lived there and numerous places west, having seen racism in many of its disguises from Kamouraska to Kelowna, I’ve always contended that Quebec is no more racist than anywhere else, and that, like anywhere else, telescoping intense minorities typically found in parochial fraternities of bush camps, moribund churches, remote rurality and the departing grumbles of bitter old men commits the ‘Texas sharpshooter’s fallacy” by attributing these redoubts of small-mindedness to the character of society at large.

    The PQ has been walking dead since at least as far back as its last default win, only a minority and only lasting for as long as it took to sanitize the corruption-plagued Charest Liberals. The fact that it only took a change of Liberal leadership to immediately force the PQ to recalculate the timing of the election was telling, but nothing told as conspicuously of PQ desperation as their resort to demagoguery—they became refugees within the refuges of a bygone time, an embarrassment to the overwhelming majority that surrounded them, a silted-in colonic polyp with the phoney patriotism of a scoundrel.

    PQ racism was the desperate act of a dying—or dead already— party; it never represented Quebec and its electoral demise proved it.

    (Response: Don’t EVER rule the PQ out as “walking dead” : history has shown many times that a political idea/ideology/party … no matter how discredited at any given time … can stage a comeback under the right (or wrong) circumstances. Unfortunately the old xenophobia/anti-Semitism/anti-Muslim racism still permeates among Quebec’s older population, especially in the rural areas. And I still believe it’s MUCH worse there than in the rural areas of BC, Saskatchewan or Ontario ..all provinces where I have lived, travelled and met lots of people who live outside the metro areas.But the good news is the younger population is taking over, getting involved, and are better educated, less frightened by minorities …and interested in exactly the same as the rest of the country: jobs, making money and social justice. More power to them! h.o)

  21. Hawgwash says:

    Not disagreeing with you 13, just stating the obvious.
    The right; Liberals in this case, are no less taxing than the left. They just don’t call it taxes. The fact that they even charge MSP Premiums is a tax and annual fee increases are tax hikes. The flim flam is just gobble up by an electorate as no new taxes

    A rose by any other name still stinks.

  22. Larry Bennett says:

    Harve, would love to agree that the “young” are taking over, better educated, less frightened by minorities etc.,
    This generation hasn’t got a clue what to be frightened of. Wait until the lights start to flicker and fuel becomes unaffordable because it is still in the ground or mixed with the sand, what will they do then, throw another fetus on the fire? Are they going to stand at the docks and airport entry lounges to welcome newcomers who want nothing more than to destroy us and our way of living? And on top of all this I just heard that Robert Fife has been named an elite of our media corps! Oh, all right, I may be exaggerating somewhat, but then, so is everyone else here. Fact is, I won’t likely be around to experience this Brave New World they look so forward to.

  23. G. Barry Stewart says:

    Good to see you back, Harvey. I’m sure the PQ news made for an even happier holiday!

    Larry: you’ve been saving up some zingers, I see. You got a few laughs out of me!

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