Peaking early; Peaking late, in politics.

It is something like a fertility cycle. If you are too early or too late, that little sperm has lost an opportunity. It is like that time in a political campaign when unfertilized minds can be receptive to a particular message. It is only the entire costly campaign that is at risk.

It has always seemed to me that there is a point in campaigns when there is a peak of receptivity. It is that point when a maximum number of the uncommitted voters minds close around a particular political failure or inspiration. (Though inspirations are rare.)

Sorting out the last federal election, I think the receptors shut down prematurely. Canadians were tired of the arrogance of Stephen Harper’s conservatives and the last half of that tedious campaign became just so much blather.

And what us politicos need to always keep in mind is that, non-political people have little tolerance for discussing politics at most times. To actually catch them at the right moment is rare.

It is probably the reason some historical figure came up with that silly warning to never discuss politics or religion with strangers. Mind you, I love encouraging strangers to talk politics. If the person does not know you, nor think you can do anything for them, you can get an honest opinion. Honesty is a rare and precious commodity in politics.

Though what you usually find out from strangers are rather superficial views of political events and trends. It most often reflects the recent items heard or seen on You Tube or Facebook as well as the evening news. It might not always pay for you to argue with a person’s opinion but it can become part of your memory bank on the subject. The strongest arguments that voters get to help convince them are the ones that trigger their own experience and knowledge.

Reading a review of a book by a political scientist the other day, he makes the astute observation that if we want to make better political decisions, we first have to want to. Since the solution would involve going beyond their comfort zone for many people, he is not optimistic.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

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