Tuesday, March 8, 2011

What if the Leafs won the Stanley cup by cheating?

So lets say for argument, that the Toronto Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup this year. "Stop that giggling, this is just hypothetical". But just imagine, after all these years, the Leafs finally bring home the bacon. There would most certainly be dancing in the streets of Toronto and mayhem in hundreds of bars across the country.

But what if, after all the partying had ended, and the "after-glow" had worn off, you learn that the beloved (or be-hated, take your pick) Leafs had cheated? What if they had cooked the books, bent the rules, hell, SNAPPED the rules in two. Played the playoffs with ineligible players. So in effect, they won, but they didn't win fair and square?

Granted, this is Hockey we're talking about. Canada's national religion. And the Leafs are arguably the most recognizable team in the game. Their brand leading all other teams in buying power. So most fans I think would be inclined to "look the other way" regarding any indiscretion their Leafs had committed and accept the hardware and the victory. Much like how everyone looked the other way the year Brett Hull of the Dallas Stars kicked in the winning goal on Domenic Hasek of the Buffalo Sabres. Dallas got the cup despite overwhelming video evidence that the goal was illegal.

But this being Canada and Canadians with their over reaching sense of fair play would always have that little black spot in the pit of their stomach. It would nag like a persistent ulcer. The victory had finally been achieved, but it was tainted. You might go back to following the Leafs the following year, but not with the same zeal. Or you might choose not to follow them at all. Of course, there would always be the miscreants who believe that all's fair in love and hockey.

But in professional hockey, the cup is up for grabs every year so the bitter taste in the fans mouths will have dissipated by the time the playoffs roll around the following year. Not so with politics however. Political competitions, elections that is, are only fought every so often. Every five years in the case of a majority government, ever two or three in the case of a minority.

More and more evidence is coming to light about how the Conservative Government of Stephen Harper cheated in the previous election. They cooked the books with regard to campaign advertisement. They had candidates claiming for unearned rebates, at taxpayer's expense. The head of the RCMP, a Conservative supporter, single handedly won the election for the Tories by choosing the most opportune time to press home the case regarding the Liberals and the Income trust affair.

And in power, the Conservatives continue to lie, cheat and steal from taxpayers to fund their campaigns and cling to their very thin veil of credibility. They won the Stanley Cup of politics by cheating in 2006. And they've cheated ever since. So that little black spot in our stomachs, that one that resembles an ulcer, the one that is the result of our Canadian penchant for fair play, does not get exorcised with the passing of a year, or two, or even three. The cheaters who have debased our political system continue to retain bragging rights. They have the Cup and they aren't letting it go. At ANY cost.  

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