Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Living in the Conservative Matrix

The aide said that guys like me were ''in what we call the reality-based community,'' which he defined as people who ''believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.'' I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. ''That's not the way the world really works anymore,'' he continued. ''We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality -- judiciously, as you will -- we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.''
Ron Susskind
New York Times Magazine

In the Matrix

Last week's crisis over the government's economic update didn't contribute to Monday night's stronger than expected showing for Pauline Marois's Parti Québécois, the Conservative Party's Quebec lieutenant said yesterday.

Speaking in an interview on RDI, Public Works Minister Christian Paradis denied the showdown and the government's decision to sharply criticize the Bloc Québécois played a role in the election results.

"It's obvious," Paradis said, pointing out that the government criticized the Bloc - not all Quebecers.

In what we call the reality-based community
Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s comments about Quebec separatists gave the Parti Quebecois a major boost and helped the sovereigntist party close in on the Liberals in the provincial election, a leading pollster said Tuesday.

In a reversal of the historic election-day trend, the PQ performed far better than expected and closed so much of the gap with the Liberals that it nearly deprived Charest of a majority.

The PQ’s share of the popular vote was just seven percentage points less than the Liberals — after polls just days ago placed it 14 points behind — and it held Charest’s troops to a three-seat majority.

Jean-Marc Leger, president of Leger Marketing, said a poll suggested 14 per cent of Quebecers changed their vote on the last day, with half making that flip-flop while at the ballot box.

Leger said the largest contributor to the discrepancy between pre-election polling and the final outcome Monday was Harper’s anti-Quebec rant in the home stretch of the campaign.

"Some angry comments against Quebec was not something really good and a lot of Quebecers were angry about that and voted for the PQ," he said.

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