Blood On The Battlefield, Or How I Learned To Quit Worrying And Love (The Non-Conservative People Of) Saskatchewan

Well, Canadian voters sure fucked it up. Last night’s election results were terrible for this country, which is likely to be badly and maybe irreparably harmed during the next four years.

Shitty, eh? Yeah!

Unfortunately, a ton of people in Saskatchewan also voted Conservative. Fifty-six per cent of the province’s voters backed the Cons. Which, sadly, proves our province is largely the dumbfuck redneck playground those of us with public platforms have  been delicately avoiding saying in print for years. Well, no point in pretending anymore. The hicks are amok. Gotta call hick like it is.

Having said that, take heart! There are tens of thousands of people in this province who did NOT vote Conservative.

Now I know that a lot of these brave, smart, friendly, funny and talented not-Conservative Saskatchewanians woke up, looked in the mirror and asked themselves why they should stay in this hateful place.

Here’s my morning message to those of you about ready to book moving vans:

Please stay! You’re not alone! There are so many Saskatchewanians who feel the same disgust and nausea at last night’s horrible election result. Don’t move away from Saskatchewan on account of idiots. There are idiots everywhere in Canada. And you already have friends and allies here.

Your stupid Conservative-voting co-workers, family, customers, clients and other toxic influences can be (mostly) ignored–you don’t have to talk to the idiots and jackasses who voted for Tom Lukiwski or Maurice Vellacott or Brad Trost. You can talk to people like us! Shit, you’ve got a whole magazine here that feels the same way about the Conservatives you do.

Let’s double-down on our friendships and make our own community stronger!

Plus, now that we’re officially not pretending we live in a nice place, we can have a lot of fun! Think of the the pranks! The demonstrations! The gleeful shenanigans!

It’s going to be a very interesting four years.  Do not despair, my frightened, angry, not-Conservative friends. You are the best of this place!

We love you!

Right! back to work!

Author: Stephen Whitworth

Prairie Dog editor Stephen Whitworth was carried to Regina in a swarm of bees. He's been with Prairie Dog since May 1999 and will die at his keyboard before admitting his career a terrible, terrible mistake.

63 thoughts on “Blood On The Battlefield, Or How I Learned To Quit Worrying And Love (The Non-Conservative People Of) Saskatchewan”

  1. Iggy got one thing right…One thing Canadians hate more than a loser is a sore loser.

    Non-Conservative voting, Saskatchewan loving resident who refuses to believe the sky is falling just because the conservatives have a majority.

  2. I think we should start lobbying for people’s union-busting.

    Hear me out here. A whole lot of conservatives who hate unions are, ironically, in them. So let’s start calling for the end of supply managed agriculture, and professional unions like accounting and law.

    I’m not saying anyone can do the work — but hey, why the heck can’t I hire an Indian-trained CPA to do an audit for me over the internet, rather than some over-paid CGA?

    So I say look for every spot in our society where a sweet insider deal remains, and you’ll find a Tory. And it’s time to bring ’em down to our level.

    After all, we’re all supposed to be competing against the China price now, right? No millionaire chicken farmer needs any more of my money than the marketplace would otherwise give ’em. If it’s laissez-faire time, let’s apply those lessons to all.

  3. Thanks for the comment, Anonymous! I’m afraid it’s actually and factually pretty effin’ bad, pal-erino.

    This post was written for people who are paying attention and are freaked out and need to know they’re not alone and that, well, yes, the sky is falling but we’ll (probably!) survive.

    You pretending what happened in this country last night isn’t a nightmare when it is gets in the way of moving forward.

  4. It’s tough to have perspective so soon after a disappointment; tougher yet if you haven’t slept – or slept very well – and are maybe the slightest bit hung over (any Guinness left at O’Hanlon’s?). Anyway, there’s a big picture, and with time you’ll probably see it. Looking forward to the third in the trilogy.

  5. Panicky, bloviating Chicken-Littles will show us the way forward! just as they always have! All Hail Whitworth!

  6. Before I respnd, Emmet, I’ll need to know if you can keep your temper. Seriously.

  7. It nice to know I am not alone. All I can say is the feeling of despair has not resided and won’t for a long time. How can this be? How can people be so blind? I have feeling so powerless!


  8. Forget it then, Barb. If you don’t have the conviction to defend your vote, that’s entirely your business. Congratulations.

  9. Harper began his second administration by ignoring the then-new financial meltdown and launching an assault on the opposition parties. It took all of those parties coming together to force Harper back to the nation’s business, and then only after Harper wasted months on political & constitutional maneuvering. And that’s Harper’s claim of a steady hand on the economy (which is antithetical to his professed free-market beliefs in the first place)!
    Who will force Harper back to work now? Tom Lukiwski? Brad Trost? Get real.
    And if it’s his social agenda you’re looking forward to, well, who the hell knows? The Conservatives’ values depend on who their audience is. Just ask Brad Trost.
    As goofy as it is, Terence Corcoran’s column in today’s Financial Post has a point. Under Stephen Harper, the Conservatives have come to embody the worst aspects of the Liberal Party.
    Congratulations, I guess.

  10. Hey look at the bright side…SK still sent a Liberal to Ottawa and the NDP came close in a few spots in SK. The Green Party finally has a MP and the Bloc got run over by an orange bus.

    It might be a tough four years, but that just gives the Left time to sort things out and make a better run next time. After all isn’t this ‘next year (or is that next election)’ country?


  11. I have to say I like the tone of this write up but disagree with the conclusion. This place was built on people looking for a new life where they could be accepted and live their lives as they see fit. Realizing now that I’m surrounded by yokels and bigots is extremely disturbing. Legislators such as Lukiwski, Trost and Vellacott have unrestrained ability to pass hateful laws. If there is no like minded people here what am I staying for? The weather – nope, stunning beauty – endless suburbs and overcultivated land isn’t really my thing, affordable lifestyle – not for the past 7 years or so.

    Saskatchewan sucks… a lot more today than it did two days ago. I’m out of here.

  12. Here’s a bit of perspective for you:


    Joining the separatists is looking better all the time… Try to salvage some small part before it’s all gone.

  13. There’s a lot of good people here Mike and an insane urban-rural split distorts that reality. I hope you’ll stay!

  14. Well, it’s sad that you don’t want to have a civil discussion, Emmet; even sadder is your assumption that you know how I voted.

    Things for people to be glad about today, in no particular order: there is now a Green Party MP, and where there’s one, there can be more; the NDP ran the best campaign hands down, and is now the Official Opposition; the BQ is history (a federal anti-federal party made no sense from the git-go, and Quebec’s social policies are very NDP-simpatico); the Liberals now have reason to seriously consider uniting with the NDP. MacKenzie King once described the then-CCF as “Liberals in a hurry”, and he wasn’t altogether OTL.

  15. Also, Barb: the problem here is that a lot of people will (plausibly) be hurt very badly by this government so we have to expect that good, compassionate people’s tempers are going to flare. Emmet’s pretty much furious right now but it’s not frivolous — it’s rooted in well-developed opinions based on real knowledge and genuine insight.

    It’s asking a lot to expect Emmet to stay detached when he knows people who will (again, probably) be directly harmed by this government.

    You’re a great commentator and a really nice lady Barb, but you often seem to have a blind spot to people’s justifiable angry, upset feelings along with a tendency to see concrete problems in intellectual abstraction. Sometimes that’s a big, big strength but when you’re, ahem, wrong about something and get you entrench yourself in tangential details, you drive people who disagree with you up the wall.

    But nobody’s perfect (lord knows) and we love you anyway. You say a lot of interesting things and you’re often really good at pointing out nonsense. And typos!

  16. So naturally you write a smart comment right before I posted my analysis-of-Barb.

    You win this round, Saylor!

  17. Well, thanks for that, Stephen, but I don’t consider this a knock-down-drag-out contest; just a discussion among thinking people. Certainly I empathize with folks who feel terribly let down and disappointed, especially if they worked very hard for a different result, and I understand the need to vent. Venting, however, can be done without ascribing motives to people on no basis but personal pique, or by namecalling. How does anyone expect to change the minds of their neighbours four years down the line (the next election) by these behaviours?

  18. I don’t see where I ascribed any motive to you. I used rhetoric to challenge you to defend your vote–a vote which I have at no point claimed to know.
    I responded merely to your assertion that you are “looking forward to the third in the trilogy” and you continue to avoid defending your statement by making personal attacks against me. Stephen’s right, I’m furious and very worried about what a majority Harper government will mean for the health and safety of a great many Canadians–some of them even taxpayers. But that anger has not been expressed in this column section today. My longer post challenges what I believe to be the reasons people had for voting for Harper’s Conservative Party. If and when I “vent” it will certainly be more colourful than what you see here.
    Again, if you can’t express whatever it is you’re “Looking forward to the third in the trilogy”, you’re entitled to that. But please refrain from making personal attacks against me whenever I ask you to explain yourself.

  19. The third in the trilogy is this Thursday’s prairie dog, where I’m assuming I’ll see analysis of the election, as per Stephen’s earlier post.

  20. After the results were in last night, I turned to Mr Katie and said, “You know, I’ve had enough of this. I’m not living in fear.” I am worried, I really am. But I’m not going to be paralysed by fear – I’m going to keep working, keep my eyes on the long game, and donate more of my time and money to those getting fucked over worse than I am. I hope this will be enough.

  21. There’s one good way to beat these Conservatives 3 or 4 at a time in Saskatchewan: when the independent boundary commission hearings begin following the 2011 Census next week, ORGANIZE TO DEFEAT the Con campaigns that are trying to keep SK’s urban ridings weak and watered-down.

    Seriously, even us city folk are a bunch of rubes: Saskatcehwan deserves 6 urban ridings and 8 rural. It can happen, it was recommended in 2002, it was beaten back. In 2012, let’s make it happen. That’ll make 5 useless sacks of skin Con MPs go bye-bye.

  22. TFJ: I think this is right on the money. Do you (or anyone) have any info on how these hearings have changed things in other jurisdictions before (I mean, do we have other successful campaigns to look to to figure out what might be the best approach)? I’ll look into it too and see if I can come up with anything.

  23. Oh, and thanks prairie dog for your coverage of the election. It’s been great.

  24. Between this majority and the upcoming provincial election (which will likely see a continued SKParty government) I really am concerned about this province and my country. But if we give up, they win. So instead we must stay, rally together and fight harder.

    I don’t know the age numbers yet, but I think that the Boomers likely determined the election’s outcome. As the next generations come up, and if we can motivate them to get out and vote, we can make change happen.

    And if we push for re-drawing the ridiculous lines. I know the ground teams from some of the losing campaigns are getting together on this.

  25. Suck it up you leftie D-Bags! Take your pity party and cram it up your collective arses!!!

  26. “33
    anonymous – May. 03 – 4:52 pm

    Suck it up you leftie D-Bags! Take your pity party and cram it up your collective arses!!!”

    Oh anonymous, this is why love the right wing and your folksy charm! It must have been great personal skills that won over a minority of voters.

  27. If you think this is a pity party, what do you call the John Gormley show? I mean, you guys “won” a long time ago, but you still have this guy getting on air every single morning whinging about how hard it is to be “mainstream” in Saskatchewan. Even with pro-business/anti-union leaders at every level of government, this guy writes a book about how the left wing agenda makes it hard for people of “above mediocre” ability like himself to achieve their destiny.
    You wanna talk about a pity party, go piss up John Gormley’s leg and tell him it’s raining.

  28. JB – I’ve just gotten started, but I’m planning on pursuing this big time in a thoughtful, professional way. The first step is convincing the people of Saskatoon and Regina that this is not some radical, sour-grapes reaction: the IBC was all set to convert Saskatchewan into a 6 urban, 8 rural constituency when a huge rightwing backlash forced them to shelve the changes. People far more thoughtful, educated, and civilized than I are trying to make this happen. It’s their work, their livelihood. They’re like math geeks-they’re not passionate about the political side of it at all. It just makes sense. And by the way, SK is a total anomaly in this regard. No other province wrecks their urban vote with rural.

    It’s all right here:

  29. Saskatchewan’s electoral boundaries have to change. This, from 2002:

    “But the Commission cannot simply adopt the status quo and leave the electoral districts as currently configured. Although the population shift from rural to urban has not been as dramatic in the past few years as it was when the issue was considered by the previous commission, in the view of the Commission, this shift will continue to take place. The Commission has maintained the status quo where possible, but it had to change some boundaries to reduce discrepancies in voter parity that would otherwise arise from the continuing population shift. As a balanced compromise of voter parity and communities of interest, including the increasing difficulty of effective representation in rural electoral districts extending over large geographic areas, these boundary changes have been kept to a minimum.

    The Commission is of the view that the process under which electoral boundary adjustments are made could be improved upon. Unfortunately, the governing legislation requires a commission to initially function in a partial vacuum because detailed proposals must be made before the commission has the benefit of current submissions from the public. In the opinion of the Commission, especially where significant changes are proposed, a commission should be permitted to make only a statement of intention before hearing submissions from the public. This would tend to ensure that submissions would be received from all interests involved. Once detailed proposals are published, there is a considerable risk that voters who agree with them will see no need to make submissions supporting them.

    For this reason, the Commission has concerns that the submissions heard by it may not be representative of the residents of Saskatchewan as a whole because voters in agreement with a proposal tend not to make representations supporting it. However, the Commission is of the view that the hearing process mandated by the legislation should be respected and that its decision should not be inconsistent with the submissions that it heard.

    The Commission is impressed by the caliber of the submissions received. Voter apathy is a growing problem and the Commission appreciates the willingness of the presenters to take the time to appear at the hearings and make their views known respecting the Proposals. The Commission has fully considered the submissions received by it and has revised its Proposals as indicated in this Report.”

  30. I work in a health region and I am training in a health-related field. I am anxious about how things will go for Health Care this next four years. I am also concerned about whether the Conservatives will push a more Judeo-Christian agenda in Parliament now that they have a majority. I am preparing to activate if need be!

  31. Great Article.
    I am in shock at this election. What’s this fraud stuff I’m hearing about?
    People being called to move to a new voting station, sometimes up to an hour away.

  32. “Comments deemed contrary to the spirit of enlightened discourse and/or entertaining squawking shall be mercilessly squished.

    Bigotry, hate, threats and psychosis will not be tolerated — but that goes without saying.

    Thanks for posting on Dog Blog. Have fun, play nice and rant well.”

    Where did this quote come from? Oh – guess it doesn’t apply to you – us middle and lefties are obvious RIGHT and therefore we can make as many hateful, ignorant comments as we like. We’re just sooooo much better than everyone else…..

  33. ““33
    anonymous – May. 03 – 4:52 pm

    Suck it up you leftie D-Bags! Take your pity party and cram it up your collective arses!!!”

    Oh anonymous, this is why love the right wing and your folksy charm! It must have been great personal skills that won over a minority of voters.” ”

    Ummm, Mike, did you happen to read the original blog, full of “folksy charm” and “personal skills”?

  34. I have an even better idea: 8 urban ridings and 6 rural. Or at least 4 in stoon and 3 in Regina. Thatll make the rural ones smaller in geog.

    They’ve been fucking us over for 15 years.

  35. The only “real” sounding rural excuse to deny a correction to purely urban vs. purely rural ridings is that the rural ridings would expand in size.

    To this I would give the reply rightwingers and rural people always give to whatever is standing in their way: GET OVER IT. There are no bigger crybabies in the country than rural and right-wingers who want something badly. To their credit, they’re usually organized enough to get it, while the centre-left is fractured, as we all know. On this effort I only have to say: You’re either with it or you’re against it.

    Watch for future notices of Boundary Commission Hearings to urge for Boundary corrections, which we MUST voice our support FOR. Silent approval, as the commission noted, is useless.

  36. My pleasure. It’s too bad the CBC missed the point that in 2002 it was the Commission who recommended changing the boundaries–now it all sounds like NDP sour grapes, which is what I was hoping to avoid. Oh well, at least it’s out there now.

  37. You’re so fucking closed minded. Seriously, you are the definition of hypocricy. You whine for equality and freedom yet if someone doesn’t agree with your politics you have a temper tantrum. The only douchebagery here is you, man.

  38. How long until the last two comments are deleted? Hey, atleast I put my name down but you have to admit, post 49 is laugh out loud funny. Short, sweet and to the point. Clear, concise and comprehensive. And isn’t that what good journalism is supposed to be?

  39. Why would I delete your posts? Also, please justify your politics, Dana. I have no idea what you stand for. Enlighten me.

  40. Wait, I mean “explain” your politics. No need to justify them unless they’re insane.

  41. Here’s a idea, why don’t you left-wing nuts team up and make a party that actually stands a chance. Otherwise your riding our bus until it breaks down :)

  42. That’s the weakest argument for provincial allegiance a person can make.

  43. Are all of you people insane or just slightly retarded. Better put your head back in the sand and stay in your fear and loathing enduced unions. You can’t even think for yourselve without some communist gov’t official or union pinhead telling you what to do, no no no don’t give us change and a better life we wont know what to do with it. The unions live off fools like you without people like you handing your hard earned dollars to them they couldn’t survive, so you better buy into their faer and loathing scare tactics so you can feel safe. You people are pathetic small minde weeklings who are afraid to change your little routines even if it would provide you with a better life for you and your children, or do you want your childrens lives to be dominated by a union with no chace for advancement or a better life. THINK about it and WAKE UP

  44. I heard from a person high up in the NDP that it was Dick Proctor from Moose Jaw who killed the riding redistribution. Also isn’t the commission independent (although there is party input)? So don’t start your conspiracy rants just yet. Oh yea the sun did rise on the 3rd of May and the 4th, 5th, 6th and I am pretty sure it show up again on the 7th.
    You lefties, your anger makes me chuckle.

  45. I think your more descriptive tag hits the nail on the head, but not in the way you intended it.

    With any due respect, if you don’t like it here, I suggest moving to Quebec – at least until their government collapses under the massive weight of the debt caused by their intrusive social programs.

    By the way, just remember where the money comes for all those social programs, and I’ll give you a hint – the majority of it comes from that 56% you just used your douchebaggery to throw a temper at.

    Enjoy the next 4 years, and the 4 after that.

  46. Can I take healthcare with me? You can keep the total lack of firearm regulation that’s doubtless coming your way.

    But seriously, I guarantee there are thousands of excellent people seriously thinking about leaving Saskatchewan thanks to the way people here vote and every single one of them is nicer than you. And smarter. And more talented. And probably better-looking. Not me; I look like a cross between Krusty the Clown and a bat. Then again, I’m not planning my Montreal exit. Yet.

  47. Thanks for nothing Mr.Zero. Now let’s
    get into the little chant that Harper and
    Wall are evil and are messing everything

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