Ontario Election 2014: Rage of the Middle-Class

Ontario Election 2014: Rage of the Middle-Class

If judgment be passed on Tuesday’s June 3rd, 2014, televised debate between the three leading players in Ontario’s upcoming June 12th, election, then Kathleen Wynne, the Liberal Party leader, and the Premier of the Province, is a Premier in trouble–BIG TROUBLE.

Her competitors have solidified in the public’s mind the keywords connection between WYNNE+ LIBERAL+ CORRUPTION + GAS PLANT SCANDAL,  creating doubt the Liberal Party can avoid corruption in the conduct of its official duties should Wynne be elected

With Wynne as damaged goods at least the two alternative candidates have what it takes to win outright or lead a coalition to govern. However, Andrea Horwath–New Democratic Party– is on public record as unwilling to cooperate with the Progressive Conservative Party candidate, Tim Hudak, to form a coalition. It is impossible to believe Kathleen Wynne would attempt a coalition with Tim Hudak; but it is well within mental reach for her to join a coalition with Horwath’s NDP and govern at Hudak’s expense.

This dance of coalitions is somewhat new to Ontario which traditionally elected Parties with solid majorities, so coalition making needs some explaining.

The middle class was the electoral backbone of post-War electoral success of the Progressive Conservative Party which ruled from the 1940’s to 1980’s with this support. Then the wheels of their social stability fell apart—(via globalization)– and with it the rise of their anger, confusion, rage and fear. The alternative service economy has been an inadequate substitute for their labor since it offers low wages and economic insecurity.

The outcome of the middle class’ confusion is coalition politics where the voters who vote because they have confidence in the political process, though few in number, are rivaled by an apathetic many that refuse to vote since they do not; fewer citizens vote and as a result major parties are increasingly short of solid majorities forcing them to make coalition deals to govern.

The collection of hardships that have befallen the middle class has created a fear economy where those that have lost good paying jobs and those that remain employed live in fear: the former fears never regaining their lost high income status and the latter fears losing that status, making the vote a weapon of anger.

Hudak has successfully capitalized on the fear politics of this fear economy. It is irrational policy with vengeance as its selling point. That such politics are not in the objective interests of the middle class is not their concern; of concern is the political punishment of those imagined to be doing better at the government trough than they: here rests Hudak’s expected firing of 100, 000 “fat cat” “lazy” “surplus” and “inefficient” bureaucrats–the enemy that can be seen.

Hidden under Hudak’s waterfall of numbers are the enemies that cannot be named for to do so before the guillotine is swung is to commit political suicide: new immigrants, the poor, elderly, single mothers, unemployed and mentally ill; those members of society unable to do for self; Hudak is mandated by middle class anger to “get them.”

Hudak’s politics identifies with the explosive rage of the province’s diminishing middle-class. They are engaged in a fight against economic death. Hudak’s corporate supporters are engaged in a cynical exploiting of their misery to create a low wage wasteland in Ontario. All they now need is a political mandate from the middle class via Hudak’s victory at the polls.

 

P.S. At the time of writing, the Toronto Star endorses Kathleen Wynne and Globe and Mail, Hudak.

 

 

 

Word count: 594

Charles Simon-Aaron

June 9th, 2014

 

 

 

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