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Overseas markets continue to tank; Harper says “don’t worry be happy”

The Nikkei Market as of this morning has suffered its worst drop since the 1987 Stock Market crash. 250 billion $ in shares were lost (so far) today.

But hey, according to Prime Minister Harper, Canadians shouldn’t worry. as that plunge will result in great buying opportunities in the stock market as a result of all that panic.

Don’t worry, be happy, Canadians!

UPDATE @ 8:20 am: Great bit of snark from one of the folks at the Globe and Mail today over that “buying opportunities” line Harper used yesterday:

Because you see, as an economist, Stephen Harper knows that if you have just lost half your retirement savings, […]

New Liberal Ads – and where do we go from here when going after Harper.

The first one, as you might guess, again goes after Harper’s economic record.

The only regret I have about this ad is that it wasn’t planned for release tomorrow, because I think that line of Harper’s where he said “there are probably some great buying opportunities emerging on the stock market as a consequence of all this panic.” could have been added to great effect in this ad. That comment is going to bite him big-time, if it gets repeated to the Canadian public, but there’s still time to use it, of course. Anyhow this is still quite hard-hitting, particularly with all the media quotes.

The 2nd ad is a bit more of a feel-good “Why I’m voting Liberal” theme:

….though it does add a few digs at Harper.

You can say what you like about how the campaign has gone, but the Liberal War Room and the ad-makers have done in my opinion a very good job with their ads. Some others agree.

As I said earlier, I think we should be punching Harper in the mouth over and over again with that “great buying opportunities emerging in the stock market as a consequence of all this panic,” line he did. That shows him out-of-touch with ordinary Canadians, and damages him and the Conservative Party far more then anything the Liberals or others could say about him. Dion needs to be bringing it up at every stump speech, and I think we need some more commercials hammering on this.

James Carville, a Democratic operative and strategy guy who was very good in the Bill Clinton Days, once said that when your opponent is drowning, throw them an anvil. In my opinion, that quote is a self-inflicted wound of Harper’s, and is potentially the anvil. We just need to throw it at him over and over.

Polls tighten further: Cons lead in Nanos down to 3!

Dare I say it, the Conservatives are in real danger now; forget their hopes for a majority, they are in peril of losing the government altogether, IF the trends hold that Nanos is showing today:

CP 34%, Lib 31%, NDP 18%, BQ 11%, GP 6%

Pollster Nik Nanos comments on the new numbers:

The trend lines say it all. We now have a tight race between the Conservatives and the Liberals. Phase one of the narrowing of the gap featured a drop in Tory support in Quebec. The last three days now see a softening of Conservative support in Ontario – potentially an “echo effect” from Quebec. Even if Ontarians are not as motivated on culture as Quebecers, the media coverage out of Quebec likely has an impact. Sunday night’s English coverage of the demonstration of artists in Montreal broadcast across the country was quite something.

Looking at the regionals, and to show what Nik is talking about, the Liberals have now taken a 9 point lead in Ontario and have reached the 40% mark for the first time in quite awhile. While the Cons have recovered a bit in Quebec, the BQ has amazingly shot up to 46%. There even appears to be mdoest recovery out West for the Liberals.. though where is hard to determine in a regional poll.

By the way, Decima is also showing the race to be closing – they have the Con lead on the Liberals down to 5 points., and they mirror the Liberal resurgence and the Con. drop in Ontario and to a lesser extent in Quebec. The difference with their poll seems to be that they have the Cons in a 1 point MOE (Margin of Error) lead in the Maritimes, while Nanos has the Liberals leading by 6 there.

This is officially a horse race, folks, which as I said at the start shows the Harper government in real danger of losing their governing status – and that’s probably why Harper seemed (to me anyway) so angry and even desperate today at his platform press conference (flip-flopping on the film tax credits for example and now saying he’d cancel that, and threatening in effect to re-open the Constitution and abolish the Senate if he and his party doesn’t get his way on Senate “reform”.

More on the Harper “platform” (if it can be called that) later.

I know Elizabeth May did well in the debates..

..but did she do as well as the polling firm Ekos has her and the Greens in Ontario?

Liberals 33, Cons. 33, NDP 20,  Green 15

I think thats the largest # I’ve seen the Greens have in Ontario from any polling firm. If you’ve been following the Ekos daily poll, they would seem to be pulling it from all parties.  So the question would be a) How accurate is Ekos methodology, and b) Is it hard or soft support for the Greens? With regards to the 2nd question, Ekos said they found that 74% of Green Party voters would “not likely” change their vote, while 17% said “likely” and 9% said “somewhat likely”.

The next question asks if they knew the Conservatives would win a majority government, would they change their vote to try and stop it, and 30% of Greens voters said they would (though I question the poll’s wording here, as one can never truly KNOW about voting night). Of course, if the polls stay the same, and it appears there is a minority government of whatever stripe,  the likelihood of them changing their vote is even more remote.

Oh, and as with other polls, Ekos also shows a narrowing down to 7% between the Cons and the Liberals, the lowest margin they’ve had since the election writ was dropped. As with Decima and Nanos, they show the Cons dropping into the teens in Quebec.

Nanos narrows to 4 points. Someone tell the media there’s a race!

Do you like Nanos? I like Nanos:

CPAC-Nanos Daily Election Tracking CP 34, LP 30, NDP 19, BQ 10, GP 7 (ending October 4)

If one looks at the regional polls today, we see that the Liberals have taken a decisive lead in Atlantic Canada (not a particular surprise), but the Liberals have now risen to 28% in Quebec, still behind the BQ by a good margin, but well in front of the Conservatives, who continue their nosedive with a 16% showing today. As for Ontario, the Liberals have narrowly edged ahead here within the MOE, and they’re going to need to extend that gap to have any hope of […]

Vandalism in Toronto to Liberal supporters mirrors exactly what occurred in Guelph

Well, we have another story in today’s Toronto Star over vandalism targeting Liberal supporters in that city:

Toronto police patrolled a midtown area overnight, after vandals cut brake lines on at least 10 cars parked at homes with Liberal election signs on their lawns. Affected residents live in the riding of St. Paul’s, in a swath of the city around Eglinton Ave. between Bathurst St. and Mount Pleasant Rd., and had Carolyn Bennett signs on their property. The cars were also damaged in other ways; some were scratched and keyed with L signs. Phone and cable lines of some homes were cut.

This is chilling, because this is EXACTLY what was done to Guelph Liberal supporters during the Guelph byelection campaign. Here are some pictures in the Guelph vandalism blogpost I did on that particular story.

This appears to be a concerted campaign of intimidation tactics aimed at Liberal voters. Call me paranoid, but I find it highly suspicious that the tactics would be almost the same in both cities (no spray-painting of houses was done in Toronto apparently). Do I blame any formal organized political party for actively doing this? Of course not, but it appears some folks are taking things into their own hands. I also mirror what Impolitical said at her blogsite; these disgusting criminal acts will not work at intimidation of those of us proud to call ourselves Liberals.

UPDATE @ 11:00 am: A press release sent to me from the Carolyn Bennett campaign indicates there was graffiti spray-painted at the Toronto homes as well. One of Ms Bennett’s campaign workers informs me that one house had spray-painted on it “B.Rae lies” and another said “McGuinty lies”.

Apparently, we’ve got people who can’t tell the difference between federal and provincial levels of government or the people running in them.

UPDATE 2 @ 11:50 am: The official Carolyn Bennett press release posted at the Liberal website talking about this despicable incident.

UPDATE 3 @ 12:38 pm: David Graham, who is a Guelph blogger, notes another similarity in this pattern:

To add to the “coincidence,” the Guelph attack took place exactly eleven days before by-election voting day, and the Toronto attack took place exactly eleven days before the general election voting day

UPDATE 4 @ 5:46pm: Impolitical now has a blog up that says Parkdale-High Park Liberal supporters were also targeted. This is getting ugly.

Nanos says we have a race again: Tory lead down to 5 on Liberals.

Well now, this totally made my day. The Cons. have dropped a couple, and the Liberals have surged with a +4 from yesterday:

Conservatives: 35 (-2) Liberals : 30 (+4) NDP: 18 (-1) Greens: 10 (+1) Bloc Quebecois: 9 (-)

It appears much of the momentum comes in Quebec, where the Liberals are up 7 points from yesterday and into 2nd place in that province, perhaps reflecting Dion’s perceived strong showing and the declared winner of the French language debate. There is also upward movement in Ontario. The Conservatives on the other hand dropped 4 in Quebec and are down 3 in Ontario.

I’m going to guess partly the French […]

The debate, the Conservative platform (?), and an online Townhall on energy prices.

– Tonight at 8pm, Dan McTeague will be hosting a townhall meeting on energy prices. The location is here at a web 2.0 enabled site. Dan will be streaming live on an internet video feed. This is probably the first time a politician in Canada has done something like this. They are taking questions at votemcteague.ca, and welcome all enquiries.

– Best quip of the English language debate last night: Elizabeth May quietly saying “Where is it?” when Harper urged people to study the Conservatives platform. A close second was when Dion said he knew he has a very strong French accent, but that he knows he speaks the […]

Harper’s Canada (and the Conservatives Canada) in 60 seconds.

Another creation by our blogger friends at A Creative Revolution. I said “ouch” when I saw this one. Very hard hitting.

Followup: NDP hypothetical official opposition status currently not happening according to Decima or Nanos.

If the latest 2 polls released today from Decima and Nanos are an accurate indicator of a Liberal turnaround in the polls and not just statistical noise, then all we engaged in the last blogpost of mine was some fun hypothetical situations.

Harper showed his “not likable streak” last week that he’s more or less masked this election, and that may have helped to trim the poll gap, as progressive moderate voters got reminded just what a nasty angry mean Conservative Party this is, led by a nasty angry mean leader. That positive momentum for the Liberals needs to be kept up. Keep the gap to single digits […]

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