Goofy about Elections

I kind of got into a goofy mood today about the upcoming Federal election.  It started with stories like this that let the world know that Canada takes its elections seriously.  We’ve always had reporting blackouts based upon time zones.  It’s always amusing to turn on the news after the polls close in Ontario to find out that the basis for the election has already been set in the Atlantic Provinces who closed their polls early.  How they voted was to be kept secret until after we voted so that we weren’t influenced.  Then, I assume, it rolled its way across the country through Central, then Mountain, then Pacific time zones.  I’m not sure how the deal works with parts of Saskatchewan but I’m sure that it works out some way.  It’s a throw back to years ago believed to keep voters unbiased as they entered the polls.  I’ll bet they never thought of cable television or satellite TV with time shifting options.

So, of course, using Twitter or Facebook, or any other communications devices would have the same effect as television, I guess.  Except that you could be influenced at the last moment as you wait to get your ballot on your Smartphone.  Somehow, I just can’t imagine Alec Couros out west waiting and then being influenced by Doug Peterson out east at the last minute.  In fact, I’m pretty secure in the feeling.  The reporting is making Canadians look a little foolish in the Twitter world’s eye and hopefully a better solution will be sought for future elections.  If we are going to educate the rest of the world, we should probably explain that we don’t vote for a Prime Minister during these elections as well!

A second moment happened while walking the dog this morning.  Until relatively recently, Essex has been a pretty safe Liberal riding.  We did elect Stephen Langdon of the NDP and most recently a Conservative in Jeff Watson.  But for the longest time, this was Whelan country. This time around, it looks interesting if you go by the lawn signs.  It almost looks like a dead heat with Watson, Liberal Nelson Santos, and New Democrat Taras Natyshak.  But, it was Natyshak that caught our interest during our morning walk.  The weather around here has been cold, rainy, and very windy.  So windy, in fact, that support signs have collapsed due to weather.  Our neighbour had a sizable Natyshak sign in their hay field that had been beaten to the ground.  I figured that it would be until after the election before things would be dry enough to even get to the sign but I was wrong.  A new one was up and I could see it and an older sign from another neighbour in the same sight lines.  The shade of orange used seems to have changed and there was some little characters in the bottom right corner.

Son of a gun.  I’ve seen some signs where the candidate had a website in place.  In this case, you’ll see…

…we’re encouraged to follow him on Facebook, Twitter, and if you get really close, you could scan the sign with a QR Code reader for a link to his website.  I’d never seen that before so kudos for trying to remain connected.  It was a rainy day so I did decide to check him out on Twitter rather than mucking through the mud to get close enough to take a picture of the QR Code.  I figured I’d check the other two as well, only finding Mr. Santos and they we following each other.  It was interesting to see who they were following and who wwas following them.  Unfortunately, they weren’t huge numbers.  I did get some entertainment though of going to the Twitter site and asking it to find users similar to them.  Who says Twitter isn’t political!  So, while we legally can’t use Twitter to share election results, we can amuse ourselves in other ways.

Finally, I stumbled upon the perfect utility for writing speeches when you’re not quite sure where you stand on a topic.  It will be helpful if I ever decide to run.  It’s called PhraseUp.  It’s perfect for times when you are stuck for words.  Just type the words that you do want to say and insert an asterisk for a little help with words.  So, if you were looking for alternatives to a position about the HST, it could be helpful to do this….

…. and the site will even to the translation to any language, if you need some help there!

This is one post that will definitely be filed under “Just Rambling”.

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OTR Links for 04/23/2011

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.