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Phone calls and hockey stalls

The Liberals are tailspinning towards electoral relevance, but still: more of this, please. Maclean’s Andrew Coyne has quibbled with the “Republican-style” description on Twitter, but I think the Libs have got to be willing to go there when it comes to Harper’s shock troops. If you’re going to do negative demagoguery (and, as I’ve argued, there’s little choice anymore in Canadian politics), you might as well do it effectively. Even many right-leaning Canadians find Republicans and their supporters to be nutters, and comparing those nutters to our own homegrown righty nutters is not even inaccurate (not that the sly Joe Volpe names the parties behind the harrassing calls, though to be fair he probably doesn’t have direct evidence about who ordered them).

Meanwhile, in a much more important branch of Canadian affairs, the Vancouver Canucks, they of the NHL’s best regular season record, have reeled away three straight games to their personal Moby Dick, the Chicago Blackhawks, and are down to a Game 7 that is a must-win on way more levels than are worth contemplating. Oilers fans are supposed to hate the Canucks almost as much as they hate the Flames, but I’ve never been able to get wholly on board with that for whatever reason. Still, the very real possibility of yet another disappointing playoff exit at the hands of the same damned team looms. Robert Luongo’s confidence, that razor’s edge element for any goalie, might well be shot after being pulled, subbed as a starter, brought in for injury relief, and then victimized on an overtime game-winner. Alain Vigneault, largely hailed as a coaching genius during the season of unprecedented franchise success, now looks frantic and outmatched, struggling to break the Sedins out from the Hawks’ smothering checking, dealing with a suddenly-porous defense, and trying whatever the hell he can with his goaltending. If the Canucks can pull out the deciding game (and they might well, having very nearly done so in Game 6), then things will get either much easier or much harder. If they lose… I doubt any Canucks fan wants to contemplate that, even if they have to get themselves ready to try. Hockey is a hideous bitch-goddess, isn’t it?

Categories: Politics, Sports
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