And I was just recovering from the trauma I experienced on Election night in November 2004. Imagine the most depressing scene you have ever witnessed. Now compare it to this: Hundreds of John Kerry supporters, many of whom had been out canvassing all day in swing states, gathered together in the vast nighttime wasteland known as Crobar, drinking non-complimentary beverages and watching the election results come in on a giant projection on the wall. Just as their spirits are sagging, wait, a surprise guest! Howard Dean comes out on stage to rally the tired masses, many of whom had campaigned for him in the Democratic primary. That is pretty cool, but the results soon become bleaker and the crowd becomes drunker. As it becomes evident that George W. Bush will win a second term, a depressing group of “performance artists” begin a rousing victory march, complete with brass and partially nude hippie dancers. It is at this point that I begin to cry, sitting with friends on a well-worn banquette in the “VIP” room, which was just any other room on this night. I cry and then I feebly recline sideways and fall asleep as the raucous and wildly inappopriate celebratory sounds mercifully fade away.
That was a little more than a year ago.
Since then I have moved to Canada, the land of socialized medicine and progressive politics. Canada, our neighbor to the North who actually respects the Kyoto Protocol, who legalized gay marriage nationwide last year, and who vocally opposes the war in Iraq.
As of yesterday, that could all change. Stephen Harper and his Conservative party won a minority victory in the Canadian federal election, meaning that he will become Prime Minister and can then immediately pull out of the Kyoto Accord and push through some Bushlike tax cuts to send the economy into the toilet. During his campaign, he vocally opposed equal marriage rights for samesex couples and supported with equal enthusiasm contributing militarily to the American disaster in the Middle East.
While it would be dramatic for me to say I feel as though I’ve jumped out of the pot and into the fire, I do think Americans are feeling a bit of hope that the demise of the Republican juggernaut is at hand, while perhaps it could just be getting started here in Canada.