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Defeated Separatists Talk About 'Next Time...'
From Ray W. Lawson <email@example.com>, 11 November 1995
The IPS article by Stephen Dale raises some interesting points which warrant further exploration.
Regarding the slim 50.6 % victory by the NO side in the referendum:
This is a direct result of the fraudulent nature of the referendum question, which suggested that Quebec will somehow be able to divorce itself from Canada and remarry, simultaneously. The effort was largely successful, astonishingly 20 to 30% of the Yes supporters believed that they would still elect members to Canadian parliament, still hold Canadian pasports, and keep the same trade treatment after attaining soveriegnty.
This technicolor dreaming was also promoted by the Quebec media, which is generally biased towards the seperatist cause. Quebec is a francophone backwater, unfortunately many Quebecois don't even realize the limitations of their media outlets.
A telling incident occured which made the NO victory appear slightly narrower than it was. Politically motivated seperatisit scrutineers in some pro federalist constituencies engaged in election fraud. The apparent scheme was to declare as many NO ballots as "spoiled" as possible. This would have gone undetected, except that they got a bit carried away and tallied as many as 12% of the votes cast as spoiled, on a constituency basis. An investigation is being conducted.
The rationality and sophistication of the Quebec electorate are in serious doubt, given the last minute upserge in Yes support. This was precipitated by the late introduction of a fiery demagogue into the campaign, Lucifer Bouchard (oops, thats Lucien Bouchard - Freudian Slip).
The lack of an effective response from the rest of Canada has fostered the seperatist movement; the near formation of Vichy Canada is a close call that will likely wake up the rest of Canada.
"The next time" as the seperatists like to say will probably see the rest of Canada united behind an effective response.