Making a list, checking it twice


Shawville Fair, shorter daylight hours, beautiful sunsets — and back-to-school’s dynamics — all point to even more afoot: a province-wide election, October 3.

Elections can come quickly, catching us unawares, our election-pants down, unless we get our election-brains pointed upward. We don’t want to just grab a choice between a couple of issues or projects that have been promised forever. Let’s write our own lists, and then compare them with what’s being offered. It’s sure better than being brain-blindfolded until we’re inside the voting booth.

A list with our choices limited to positives, a list of positive action — and we can leave conspiracies and hell-fire dramatics to our southern neighbours. Canada is known as a positive, open place (despite the very-complex demands of us trying to blend, or not-blend, multiple cultures). Let’s be positive, first. Later we can consider, if we must, if today’s personal Hellfire mouth-missiles are really as helpful as the media comic books claim.

What would we, in this wide Pontiac riding of Quebec, like to see improved? That’s positive. What can be improved, which governmental plans and actions are long-passed their due-dates?

Just list the steps you’d like to see, only positive ones — and only those within provincial jurisdiction. And only those promises achievable here, now, within our own life-times.

Later we can compare our lists with what the parties are promising.

“Voting reform” is a great example. Last election, one party won 40% of the votes — a negative majority! But it gave them 80% of the seats in the Assembly, an effective majority. Here’s positive opportunity #1 to improve our Quebec.

Another example is the shortage of family doctors (and of all health professionals) Personally, I’ll vote for any candidate offering a way to improve this, without bankrupting the government which also funds education, infrastructures, etc. — and, please, privatization is a stupider proposal than just staying with present inequalities.

These are examples of clear, positive, and do-able promises that should attract our vote. Side note: Quebec Independence, no matter who proposes it, is not a
promise that can be fulfilled as stated, so don’t assume “Independence!” is any more realistic than the truckers’ convoy shouts of “freedom!” These aren’t political proposals, they’re bait. “Lower taxes!” is another bait.

So, dear readers, start your lists! I want you to do this because we’re all neighbours in this riding and we all deserve to get our needs attended. Send a few of your positive ideas to the Pontiac Journal.
(Letters to the editor at

If these few examples seem simplistic, imagine how they could improve our lives. Too simplistic, really? More doctors? Intra-party cooperation on voting reform? Try your own list … then send it in.

And vote, October 3.