By Dave Brindle
It’s so damn hard following the daily romper room in the House of Commons, you know? It’s so, like, boring to form an opinion that isn’t about head-shots in hockey. And then, as if that isn’t too much to expect, you’re prodded and goaded to a polling station — WTF! — to vote — GAK! — for, like, the gazillionth time in, like, I dunno, four years, when there are way better things to do in a day that’s already so busy, whatwith commuting, working, taking care of the kids, watching “Dancing with the Stars” 24/7. Life is so hard when you’re a 30-something Canadian.
And, of course, it’s all the politicians’ fault, with all their playing games, which has led Canadians to tune out of politics, which has contributed to declining voter turnout, which has . . . blah-blah-blah.
Here’s the thing. It’s not the politicians’ fault. It’s yours. Yeah, I’m talking to you — you who haven’t read this far. You, the Canadian voter or, rather, the Canadian who does not vote. You know who you are. Lord only knows, there are enough of you. But, you’re not reading this because, well, because then you’d be reading, and the Canadian who does not vote also does not read and does not think.
But now, from the network that brought you . . . Oh, sigh, I don’t know, name any old banal CBC show — “The National” — comes Vote Compass.
Frustrated by feeling left out when the conversation shifts unexpectedly, recklessly, and bewilderingly to the election? Completely unaware of the issues? Been living under a rock? Been hit in the head with a rock? Now you can know where you stand on the issues, find out what you think of the party leaders, and know which party to vote for, even if you have no clue.
I like to call it “Voting for Dummies.” Just register your “feelings” on a series of about 30 issues decided on by the CBC and a group of academics, ranging from “Canada should seek closer economic relations with the USA” (strongly disagree, somewhat disagree, neither agree nor disagree, etc.) to “How many new immigrants should Canada admit?” (many more, somewhat more, about the same as now, etc.). Click away, and find out if you’re a progressive or a troglodyte. Because if the CBC and a group of leading academics can’t tell you where you fall on the ideological spectrum, well, who can?
Not everyone is happy with the quiz. According to a tweet from @punditsguide, “A Facebook group has popped up of NDPers from Sask complaining about the CBC Vote Compass.” And at least one academic, one who is likely jealous because academics always seethe with envy, thinks the Compass is flawed, causing “the survey to default to Liberal.” Add to that the fact that so many Canadians who have taken the test have been surprised by the result, and it’s no wonder the country is so far off fucking course.
Let me be honest (because this election is about honesty, if nothing else – and it really is about nothing else). Truth be told — and it won’t be — The only real issue in this election is whether or not Stephen Harper is a douchebag. Plain and simple. That’s all you need to decide in order to vote. Nevertheless, whether with compass or not, I predict 40% of Canadians will not manage to find their way to a polling station on May 2nd. Why? Because half of you couldn’t find your food dish if it was moved, let alone navigate to a school gymnasium or community centre. That’s the half that gave up before reading this far. They’re complete failures as Canadians. The test isn’t even that hard! Vote Compass asks 30 questions; voting day asks one. One question. Multiple choice. MFC!
Vote. You do remember how to vote, don’t you? You just hold your nose and mark an X. Or have you sat your fat ass on the sidelines for so long that you really do need directions on how to think?
You’re a 30-year-old Canadian. Grow up. You don’t need a compass. You need a whack upside the head.