The Rhinoceros Party of Canada

February 15, 2009


It’s true! There really was a Rhinoceros Party, of Canada! And we all thought American politics was weird…


The Rhinoceros Party was a bona-fide political party in Canada from the 1960s to the 1990s. Their platform promise? Not “CHANGE,” nay! It was more honest– “a promise to keep none of our promises.” Now that’s a campaign promise that we know will be kept!

The Rhinoceros Party was a party devoted to sarcasm, showcasing the absurd by being absurd. The Party

declared that the rhinoceros was an appropriate symbol for a political party since politicians, by nature, are “thick-skinned, slow-moving, dim-witted, can move fast as hell when in danger, and have large, hairy horns growing out of the middle of their faces.

They said they were “Marxist-Lennonists”– of Groucho Marx, and John Lennon, that is.

I laughed out loud at some of their political aspirations. What’s even funnier is that some of our “real” politicians want to do some of these things!

  • Repealing the law of gravity. (This would cure obesity, I think!)
  • Paving Manitoba to create the world’s largest parking lot.
  • Providing higher education by building taller schools. (It’s FOR THE KIDS!!)
  • Putting the national debt on Visa.
  • Banning guns and butter, since both kill. (New York State beat ya!)
  • Changing Canada’s currency to bubble gum, so it could be inflated or deflated at will. (U.S. beat ya!)
  • Banning lousy Canadian winters. (Now that’s a law I’d like to see become universal.)
  • Making the Trans-Canada Highway one way only.
  • Ending crime by abolishing all laws. (Uh oh, they’re stealing from the U.S. Liberal Party platform!)
  • Instituting English, French and illiteracy as Canada’s three official languages.
  • Tearing down the Rocky Mountains so that Albertans could see the Pacific sunset.
  • Making Montreal the Venice of North America by damming the St. Lawrence River.
  • Abolishing the environment because it’s too hard to keep clean and it takes up so much space.
  • Paving the Bay of Fundy to create more parking in the Maritimes.
  • Turning Montreal’s Saint Catherine Street into the world’s longest bowling alley.
  • Adopting the British system of driving on the left; this was to be gradually phased in over five years with large trucks and tractors first, then buses, eventually including small cars and bicycles last.
  • Selling the Canadian Senate at an antique auction in California.
  • Counting the 1000 Islands to see if the Americans have stolen any.

It’s too bad the party dissolved! I think they made great sense, more sense than we see in the other parties. And at least these guys were HONEST about what they’d do. It figures that the other parties ran them into the ground.

The Rhino Party does maintain a website, though. See it here.


11 Responses to “The Rhinoceros Party of Canada”

  1. Flo Says:

    If these guys ran in the US I would not only vote for them but do campaigning too!!!!

  2. Rebecca Says:

    I would, too! Maybe I can get a lawn sign and stick it in my front yard… Canada or not, I think these guys are great! And my neighbors already know I’m a bit of a radical. 😉

  3. Ravyn Says:

    Usually the problem with political jokes is that they get elected. Why couldn’t that have been the problem with this one?

  4. Joel Klebanoff Says:

    Yes, politics here in Canada used to be much more fun. Now we have to satisfy ourselves with laughing at our allegedly serious politicians.

    Local politics also used to be much more humorous here in my hometown of Toronto, Canada. I remember in one election many years ago someone who called himself “Rick of the Universe” ran for mayor on the platform that we should change the name of Toronto to Miami because it’s warmer. Also years ago “The Hummer Sisters” ran for mayor. Don’t ask me how a group was able to register as a candidate for mayor because I don’t know, but they were a local singing group who ran on the platform of “this is not job for a politician.” I couldn’t agree more.

    I long for the good old days. They were much more fun.

  5. grace Says:

    the world would have been a better place if these guys were actually elected. hahaha

    seriously, i never thought that politics in first world countries could also be messy

  6. Shinade Says:

    Oh my this wonderful. but you always have such interesting post. I am dropping in today from my new blog. I had to have another for my silly willy memes and such.

    I too think this is a great idea. But you know the guys that really do tell all of the truth never do get elected.

    I was thinking about the last race for Governor in Texas. And gee whiz I can’t think of the guy’s name but he did more votes than any thought he would.

    He was way out there on a lot of issues, he’s a singer/songwriter/comedian/writer. But way out there or not at least he wasn’t lying about anything.

    He told the truth about the things in his life and about his life style. Now I’m not saying that he should have won. But, it was refreshing to listen to him on the news. At least you knew when you did listen you were getting the real deal and not a political machine!

  7. Shinade Says:

    Okay I just read my former post. Please know everyone that I am just now working on my first cup of coffee this morning. I hope you wiggle through all of my mistakes and understand it.:-)

  8. Fisher Says:

    This is hysterical. Go Canada! Bring them back in and maybe they will trickle down to the US. They have my vote!

  9. Phyl/Bookishgal Says:

    Oh, that’s wonderful! I never voted for the Rhinos (though I might now), and I didn’t realize they weren’t in existence any more. I would love to have seen one get elected, just because!

    Wonderful party platform.

    Joel — don’t forget Enza the Supermodel also running for mayor here in Toronto. I don’t know if she ran last time; she might have been too busy with her journalistic work by then. (For everyone else — Enza is either a transvestite or a cross-dressing gay man. I believe she’s the latter.)

    Of course, we had Mel Lastman for a couple of terms or so, making the mayor’s office a non-stop joke for several years. Maybe we just needed to take a break of seriousness for a bit, to clean up his messes. I’m sure we’ll get back to the fun stuff when it’s all straightened out.

  10. Joel Klebanoff Says:

    Phyl, how could I forget about Enza? She always livens up the city election campaigns. Respectable media refer to Enza using female pronouns and generally label her, without any derogatory intent, as a “drag queen.”

    Yes, Mel Lastman was always good for a laugh when he was mayor. Just ask the army.

    Then there was the guy, I’ve forgotten his name, who used to busk ditties of his own creation (to recorded background music) on the corner of Bloor & Yonge. His musical odes usually were either hurting songs, à la country & western, or they had some social commentary. He ran for mayor a number of times, but he died a while back, which will put a serious crimp in his campaigning.

  11. Phyl/Bookishgal Says:

    Heehee! Well, there are pros and cons about the army (the Environment Canada guy said it was exactly the right thing to do, but because of the ridicule it got, no mayor ever will again, even when it’s the best thing for the city).

    I was thinking more of Lastman on Larry King, mystified about who the WHO were during SARS. And lets’ not even *think* about Africa.