Americans telling Canadians how to vote?

Q: What's less successful, more likely to back-fire, in Canada, than trying to buy Québecois loyalty to Federalism?
A: Americans telling Canadians how to vote.

We may like you folks, our neighbours to the south, as individuals, but we don't like your government, we only grudgingly appreciate aspects of your culture (but mostly because we have few other options and because so many Canadians have made it big in your market) and we don't like to be told what to do by you or by anyone else.

Imagine for a moment how much it would hurt a presidential campaign for foreigners to tell Americans not to vote for the other guy. It'd be a kiss of death, usually. We're no different from you on that score.

Your pundits would never have the gall to tell the Brits or the Spaniards how to vote. Latin Americans in the US would rise in anger at "brains" who presumed to tell the Mexicans how to vote (not to mention how that would affect the voters there if the word got out!). Why are they wasting their breath telling us?

Chances are, neither Ralph Nader nor Michael Moore (both of whom have told us whom not to vote for) understand the integrity issues that are very rightly dogging the Liberals (can you trust an insincere guardian of a social safety net?). And they probably don't realize that there are other parties, including the NDP (and even the Greens) who could come out of this election with surprising levels of influence. Our system is different enough that a Ralph Nader wouldn't be the same spoiler factor here as he was, say, in Oregon.

Who I'm going to vote for is my business and I choose to divulge that "publicly" to my ballot paper only. If you ask me whom in your election you should vote for, I might or might not tell you. I wouldn't think it appropriate for any public figures from up here in Canada to be telling you folks whom to vote for.

Ralph: loved the book (Unsafe...) but it's getting a little long in the tooth.
Michael: your movies knock me flat and they have made me think more lucidly.
You're both good at what you do, but when it comes to Canadian elections, you know not of what you speak. And as non-voters you have neither standing nor competence. Please, just be quiet and watch. Mr. Chomsky, another chap from your country who has opened my mental vistas, is saying nothing. There's an example you could both afford to follow.

If we ask you what you think, say it, by all means. But in the meantime, this is an election year in your own country: why don't you concentrate on that and let this one be.

Thank you.

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