the Sweet Smell of Burning Fur (plonq) wrote,
the Sweet Smell of Burning Fur

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Sometimes "wrong" = "close enough"

I heard my first geese of the season on my way to the office today, and a gaggle of them passed by overhead flying north. This, as much as any of the other signs, tells me that the brutal winter of '13/14 is finally in its last throes. It has been a rough season for just about everyone east of the great divide, but ours has been especially ugly. This has been the longest, coldest, snowiest winter in over 100 years.

On the plus side, this winter is letting a whole new generation set the low bar for awfulness.
Water everywhere

Obviously I am going to be addressing the situation in Quebec as an outsider, and people living there will roll their eyes at how far off the mark I am, but this is how the situation there looked to somebody peering in from outside the bubble.

I take a bit of exception with the people who are walking about, thumping their chests and crowing about how the election results in Quebec are a clear repudiation of their proposed charter of values. They are conveniently ignoring the fact that the PQ were riding high in the polls when the charter was the main issue in the election and only dropped precipitously when they raised the banner about calling another referendum on separation.

This is not to say that I think it was the charter that was propping up the PQ, rather it was the unpopularity of the scandal-ridden Liberal party that led to their early performance in the polls. I get the impression that Quebec voters are largely ambivalent about the charter, but spoke quite clearly that they are not ready for a divisive, acrimonious round of debates leading up to yet another vote for separation. The fact that the PQ suffered reversal of fortune and defeat by reminding the voters of their core value may lead the party to an existential crisis over the next four years.

I think there has been a bit of a shift in the political landscape of Quebec in the last decade. Immigrants are not keen to separate from the rest of the country in which they settled, the wealthy are not keen on political instability, and I think the youth have become more jaded and cynical than the previous generations. Creating a separate, distinct nation of Quebec is a very idealist by nature, which puts it out of step with the current political climate. In this regard, the voters there are starting to catch up with the rest of the continent.

I wonder if the PQ can continue to survive when the voters are clearly losing interest in their core tenet. While the party is largely founded on left-wing ideals, they have a lot of middle and right wing elements in the party who have joined them in a marriage of convenience under the banner of sovereignty. I wonder if we might see a schism form in their ranks over the next four years if it becomes more apparent that this dream might be unattainable.

Quebec has traditionally been more liberal and left-leaning then the rest of Canada, both provincially and federally. Even as they threw the BQ out of federal office, they replaced them with the next most left-leaning party in the running in the last federal election. I think we may see some shift in their provincial political scape if only because they need a party that reflects their social values, but is not bent on splitting them off from the rest of their country. To my mind, this could either force the PQ to reassess their core tenet of separation, or bolster the enigmatic CAQ, who seem to espouse a somewhat socially liberal agenda (while remaining rather vague on the question of sovereignty).

Anyway, this is just my rambling as an outsider looking in, and Quebec has shown that they are not shy about ignoring what the rest of us think and charting their own course. Vive le Québec. Love them or hate them, they make our country a more interesting place, and I am glad they have decided to stick around. It's almost enough to make me forgive them for Celine Dion.

My subject line had nothing to do with the election results, rather it is in reference to food. Even though I have been sliding a bit on my diet (I am holding steady, but not actively losing weight at the moment) I am still making a point of entering most of it into an on-line food tracker. If nothing else, this keeps me honest about what I am eating. As the weather warms and I become more active outdoors, I should be able to start shedding pounds again if I keep my food intake at this level.

Some of the fish I bought at the Chinese grocery on the weekend are from a company and label I have never heard of. I tried scanning the bar code on my phone and it matched up with a totally different brand and product. I searched their database, and I found some results that were similar, but not quite matching what I had. I was just about to create a new entry for this can of fish when I looked again at one of the wrong results,and it occurred to me that the nutritional label on the can was just an average anyway. The incorrect results I was looking at could easily fall within a margin of error for the can I had.

I decided to apply one of my truisms from work to the situation: sometimes wrong is close enough.
Tags: geese, quebec
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