POLITICAL & Sporty Wishes - Part 3

Back to wrap things up, before I embark on a four day eating binge where I do my best impersonation of a woman pregnant with triplets.

Ah, the holidays.

Here are my top three wishes - not just related to sports - for 2006. In cased you missed them; here are 10-7 & 6-4.

3. A fundamental reexamination of the voting practices in this country.

Since 1984 the voter turnout for federal elections relative to the population of Canada has fallen from 75.3% to 60.9%. Does anyone else get the feeling that we are headed for an all-time low turnout?

From what we've seen on this site alone, Stephen Harper is a polarizing figure, but for whatever reason, his divisive politics have not galvanized the Canadian people to flock to the polls. Jack Layton - though he is quite polished - is stereotyped by the party he represents. The incumbent Paul Martin has more baggage attached to him than terminal three at Pearson International.

The result - an apathetic public. Which brings me to my point:

If I can post an article to this site when I'm sitting in the first row of the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, New York using my blackberry, why do I have to find a community centre and go through a tiring process to vote for the next PM? Moreover, why would you ever schedule an election for just one day, a Monday at that?

How many people that are working 14-hour days on Bay Street are going to stop by the voting station in their riding on the way home? I wouldn't. (By the way, if for whatever reason you're discussing this issue, take note of the fact that nobody ever admits to not voting. There's a sexual joke here just WAITING to be written. I'm abstaining. My family reads this.)

The current voting procedure - while still valuable for a portion of the population - should be aggressively farmed out to HR departments of corporations and online banking sites.

I'd even go so far as to say voting should fall under the same category as taxes; which is to suggest, it should be mandatory.

2. Leaf fans sucking it up for a year.

Speaking of Prime Ministers, Lester B Pearson was just entering the final year of his five-year term when the Leafs last hoisted the Stanley Cup. (Research has its benefits, and I apologize for briefly sounding like Damien Cox.) It would be convenient for the completely insane fan base if they mortgaged the future every year to try and end the drought; it would also be a shame.

As reported earlier this week, the salary cap in the NHL is increasing by as much as five million dollars. Unlike other teams, who began humping cost-certainty as soon as the new CBA was ratified, the Leafs were patient enough to allow the market to set. Entering this off-season they will be the only big market, desirable destination team with significant cap space to build.

Unfortunately, to start fresh we're putting up with a mediocre group of players that are nothing more than the .500 record they currently have. As always, they will be game in the playoffs, (assuming of course, they make it) but it's a safe assumption there will not be a parade down Bay St. this spring.

In the immediate, that is disappointing. In the long run, it's worth the price.

(Of course, they'll still beat Kanata.)

1. Sweet, Sultry September Baseball.

T'was the 10th of September, and all through the city
The locals were chatting, "The Jays don't seem too shitty".
They were two games from first, with a big series looming,
The Dome had been rocking and attendance was booming.

The Yankees were coming and they had been mashing,
In past this was the moment that the Yanks sent us crashing.
But something felt different; there was no sense of dread,
And the Doctor was pitching; we'd soon be ahead.

The Jays swept them that weekend and moved into first,
Then wrapped up the division, with a spectacular burst.
And I heard J.P. proclaim, as he drove out of sight.
I said we'd be better and we proved it tonight.

(Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. SA)

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