On Twitter, Andrew Potter asked the (presumably rhetorical) question:
Has anyone done the math on "anytime, anyplace"? How many potential debates is that? A brazillion? And Harper can't make one?
Although Andrew probably wasn't looking for a 'real' answer, I thought I'd try to give him one. Now, if we use a loose definition of time and space, the answer is 'infinite'.
I wondered, however, how many possible debates could there be if we placed reasonable limits of what constituted a time and a place. Here is what I came up with.
Now we need to define what we mean by place. For this I would consider a town or city to be a unique location. I wasn't able to track down exactly how many towns there are in Canada, but on Wikipedia I found that there are roughly 3 700 municipalities in Canada. I will use this as my estimate of number of places.
With 810 possible times and 3 700 possible locations, there are almost 3 million (2 997 000) possible debates.