Canada votes, nothing changes

Another Canadian election has come and gone, and nothing has changed. Despite just over a month and millions of dollars spent on the campaigns, we are once again left with a minority Conservative government. Does this mean we’ll be back at the polls again soon? So far analysis suggests it’ll be 2010.

Here’s the news from CBC:

As the final tally approached, the Conservatives were up less than one per cent in the overall popular vote, which translated into a 20-seat increase from the last federal election. The Liberals, in turn, were down 2.4 per cent, or 25 seats, according to the projections.

I didn’t feel a connection with any of the parties or their leaders. I ended up voting for the Green Party. In the past, I’ve voted Liberal, NDP, and Conservative. I studied the ballot for a long time today, but couldn’t find Barack Obama’s name. I really wish we had inspirational leaders like they do south of the border!

Speaking of which, with the Canadian election now finished, I can turn my full attention back to the American election. The third and final presidential debate takes place tomorrow night at 9 PM EST. Go Obama!

UPDATE: CBC says voter turnout was less than 60%. About ten million Canadians gave up their right to complain. Sad.

UPDATE (1:20 AM MT): Voter turnout hovers at around 59%, the worst turnout in Canadian history. NDP candidate Linda Duncan pulled off a major upset in Edmonton – Strathcona, defeating incumbent Rahim Jaffer by just 442 votes. The Conservatives otherwise swept Alberta.

Super Tuesday 2008

imageToday is the big day! Twenty-four states are holding their caucuses and/or primaries today in the United States – it’s known as Super Tuesday. The results have already started to come in, and if you’d like to follow along, here are some handy online resources:

Be sure to check out my post on using Twitter for Breaking News too.

Of course, you could do it the old fashioned way and turn on CNN, but where’s the fun in that?!

If you’re trying to figure out which candidate is the most tech-friendly, here are a few resources:

Happy Super Tuesday!

Use Twitter for Breaking News

Post Image Are you a news junkie? Do you want to be the first to know about things? Look no further than Twitter. Reliability problems aside, it really is the best place to get the latest, breaking news. When the primaries are on in the US, I find out who wins via Twitter, as soon as they are projected. Today I found out about Heath Ledger right away. Increasingly I get my news via Twitter.

The best part about Twitter is that it can follow you anywhere! You can view it on the web, on your mobile Internet device (like the iPod touch), over instant messaging using Google Talk, or on your mobile phone via SMS.

Here are a few Twitter accounts you should consider following for all news:

  • nytimes – the latest headlines from the New York Times
  • bbcworld – the latest headlines from BBC World News
  • cbcnews – the latest headlines from CBC News
  • cnn – the latest headlines from CNN
  • cnnbrk – breaking news only from CNN

In addition to the above, I’ve found the following accounts to be useful for news about the US Election:

  • politics – lots of political news, as you’d expect
  • davewiner – he’s really quick at posting when the networks declare a winner
  • johnedwards – the official Twitter of John Edwards
  • barackobama – the official Twitter of Barack Obama
  • ronpaul2008 – the official Twitter of Ron Paul

Also useful is the Politweets site, which lists the latest messages mentioning the candidates across all Twitter users.


Huckabee isn't running for 8th grade

Holy crap politicians like Mike Huckabee scare me. Or more accurately, the fact that some Americans will vote for Mike Huckabee scares me. I think there should be a test you have to take if you want to run for President. One of the questions on that test should be, "do you think the Earth is 6000 years old?" Anyone who denies evolution is simply not fit to be President. End of story.

Check out this YouTube video of Bill Maher interviewing Mike Huckabee. Maher asks about one of the debates, in which Huckabee was one of three Republicans to raise his hand when asked if he did not believe in evolution. As part of his explanation, Huckabee calls the question "silly" and explains that he is "not running for 8th grade". For the sake of everyone living on this tiny marble, I sincerely hope that no one like Huckabee is elected next year.

Bush might be an idiot, but people like Huckabee are downright crazy.

Read: Digg

Bloomberg for President?

Post ImageI don’t know about you, but when I think of “Bloomberg” I generally think of money. Maybe that’s because Bloomberg L.P., the company that current New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg started back in 1981, is the largest financial news and data company in the world. Or maybe it’s because Mr. Bloomberg is filthy rich! Either way, it takes more than money to run for President doesn’t it? Okay, okay, money is important. Still, that’s pretty much all the press has to go on at the moment:

The announcement by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg of New York that he was leaving the Republican Party to become an independent was made after nearly two years in which his aides had laid the groundwork for a potential independent run for president.

Oh no, not the aides laying groundwork! That means he must really be planning to run for President! Nevermind that he made it clear he wants to finish his term as mayor:

“My intention is to be mayor for the next 925 days and 10 or 11 hours,” he said. “I’ve got the greatest job in the world, and I’m going to keep doing it.”

Ah I can just imagine what the reporters were thinking – he has money, so he must want to run for President, let’s find information that proves us right! Maybe I am just being naïve, but if he says he isn’t running, don’t you think there’s a small chance he is telling the truth?

Bloomberg becoming an independent is interesting, for sure, but I find it kind of comical that the media want to make becoming an independent mean running for President. Perhaps Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have become boring?


Thoughts on the MySpace Presidential Primary

Post ImageTechCrunch posted yesterday that MySpace is going to be holding a presidential primary on January 1st and 2nd, 2008, which is before any of the official state primaries. Every member will be asked to vote for their favorite candidate. Michael Arrington makes a good point about why this should be done on Facebook instead:

Facebook’s user accounts are each tied to an email address or cell phone, resulting in far fewer fake or duplicate accounts. Given the low quality of the MySpace user base (multiple accounts, no identity check, etc.) it would be relatively easy for a campaign to create a significant number of fake accounts to stuff the ballot box in their favor. Facebook can also tie their users to U.S. residency much easier than MySpace.

I would add another reason: Facebook is not owned by News Corporation! Not that I would expect Facebook to be completely impartial, but more so than the owner of Fox News.

I don’t think anyone is going to take the results very seriously, but I like the idea regardless. Anything that might make politics more relevant to the younger generations is worth trying. So far Barack Obama has a massive lead in terms of the number of friends he has, but expect the other candidates to catch up.

Read: TechCrunch

Election 2008 at Yahoo! News

Post ImageAs you probably know, I have been recording a weekly podcast covering the latest Hillary Clinton related headlines. I like doing it, because it gives me a chance to keep up on the news myself. I have found that gathering the stories takes a bit of effort though, so I was excited to see this from Yahoo:

At Yahoo! News, we’ve pulled together an über-site to help you engage in the 2008 campaign. In addition to the latest news videos, headlines, and political commentary, you’ll find dedicated pages for each candidate.

Beautiful – it’s almost exactly what I have been looking for! Here’s the page dedicated to Hillary Clinton. I’ll definitely be making use of this site on the weekend. Yahoo says they are going be adding even more stuff too, so it’ll only get better.

Read: Yodel Anecdotal Podcast

Post ImageToday I am launching a new little project of mine – a podcast about Hillary Clinton and her run at the White House. Each Sunday I’ll post a new episode with a recap of the previous week’s Hillary-related headlines. You can listen to the first episode here.

I’ll also use the podcast to test and demonstrate some of the features available at Podcast Spot. For now it’s just audio, and the weekly recap will likely remain that way, but I might do some additional episodes in the future. As I mention in the first episode, there’s about 92 weeks to go until the election. Wouldn’t it be cool if I got to interview Hillary Clinton herself during that time? Highly unlikely, but you never know.

The first episode was recorded pretty quickly this morning, so production quality might not be spectacular. I’ll work on it though. If you have feedback, I’d love to hear it!

Read: Episode 1

Barack Obama on Monday Night Football

Post ImageI love American politics. With less than two years to go until the next President is elected, things are starting to get very interesting indeed. Last night democratic Senator Barack Obama, a potential candidate for the presidency, had some fun with a little announcement on ESPN’s Monday Night Football:

In a teasing news release, his office said Monday afternoon that Obama would make an “announcement” before the game “about an upcoming contest of great importance to the American people.”

You can see the video clip from last night’s broadcast at YouTube. Pretty darn funny!

Don’t be surprised if you hear more about America’s “revolutionary choice” for President – the black Senator or the female Senator (Hillary Clinton) – over the next few months. Both are expected to announce whether or not they are running early next year. Hillary is widely seen as the early front-runner, though the Daily Kos says If Obama runs, he wins.

Also from Kos – Obama can afford to wait on Hillary, and Gore can afford to wait on everyone. Wouldn’t that be something! If Al Gore eventually decides to run (he has usually left the door open for this) he’ll win hands down.

Assuming Gore doesn’t run, I’d like to see Hillary Clinton win.