Monday, December 1, 2008

Day 3 --> Grand Forks, ND to Regina, SK

Day 3 --> Grand Forks, ND to Regina, SK

New total = 2,835 km

Today started with continental breakfast and jumping on to the interstate headed for the Canadian border. Once outside of Grand Forks the speed limit jumps up to 75 mph I thought Michigan was quick. In the hour and a half drive to Manitoba the only license plates were from "Friendly Manitoba." The police must weekends off in the Midwest because I didn’t see any between the middle of Minnesota and Regina, or they are really well disguised as one of the black pickup trucks with Manitoba plates which haven’t been to a car wash in a month that drive always about 15 km over the speed limit.

Just before crossing the border Homeland Security has their exit check stop set up. They wanted to see inside the trunk, I guess they are doing a survey for the auto industry trying to see different packing methods, what makes you qualified to look I into a trunk I don’t quite know. Your/our tax dollars at work, the students at Rigaud must learn this by checking cars going into Ontario at the Quebec border. Crossing the border into Emerson was no problem; the 18 year old at the crossing was most concerned about if I had any repairs or modifications done to the car while I was away.

I got out of the car at the welcome centre to be met with minus 15 weather with the wind chill. It was cold and because I didn't put on my gloves my hands were cold as I took the usual amount of pictures. They put the welcome sign (the one of the "province") on what seemed to be the highest point in the province. It is really as flat as everyone says.

The drive into Winnipeg was busy and wet. I went past the University of Manitoba on my way to the Legislature to see the "Golden Boy." After that I had some lunch before heading towards Brandon. While having lunch I got to read the Winnipeg Sun and the cover is one which Conservatives wouldn’t be happy. In big headlines with a picture of Stephen Harper “FLIP FLOP”

How does the Conservative party let someone like Jim Flarety run the party into the ground? Has Mr. Harper not studied what Jim did to the Harris/Eves reign. Somehow King Stephen let down his guard and the PMO’s office didn’t plan on what the other parties might do. Then the PMO’s office leaks a tape of a conversation that they were not intended to hear possible even though they somehow got included in the conference call. Obviously the Fiberals and (new) democratic party don’t mind getting into a coalition with the BLOC. Gilles Duceppe in cabinet? How can you have the government supported by a party whose raison d’etre is to dissolve the government? As an Ontario implant outside of the province I will have to investigate what western sentiment is to Quebec holding power and getting more and more. With the election happening in Quebec this is going to play into the hands of the PQ? Madness… It wasn’t that Dion and Layton aren’t happy with way the conservatives were handling the economy, it is about two parties that are having financing problems and lower donations than the leading party, the real reason is as Rex Murphy put it, “It is all Politics and no Government” (December 01, 2008 CBC National POV) This is the stuff that political science majors dream of, but we will see if Harper can dissolve parliament for Christmas before the coalition can go to the Governor General. The man who might have become only the second liberal leader not to become Prime Minister might get a chance to occupy 24 Sussex.

By Brandon the gas tank was just above half and it was dark again. The Trans Canada highway has been twinned from Brandon to Regina and is in pretty good condition. A bit of blowing snow when trucks went past I proceeded into Regina and went to the RCMP visitor’s centre and Division HQ. I then drove across town to see the Legislature before heading to a hotel for a night’s rest. This was posted on Monday because I wanted to learn a bit more about the flip flop.

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