Tag Archives: elizabeth may

MayDay 2011: Greens to Waste Money on the Consortium

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The Green Party of Canada is doing everything it can to make sure that Elizabeth May is part of the election debate.

Ironically, they are spending bags of money on the very media and broadcast consortium that is blocking them out of the debate.

They plan on raising tens of thousands of extra dollars from their supporters so that they can blow it on a full page ad in the Globe and Mail.

Did no one remind them that (a) people don’t read the newspaper any more and (b) the Globe is owned by Bell Canada, the same company that owns CTV which happens to be the same company that’s blocking them out?

Why are they wasting their money on this crusade?

Why not take the money that you’re raising and use it to win a riding or two?  Find a couple of areas where you actually have a chance, get people on the streets, fly people in to solicit from door to door and stop enriching the machine that’s pushing you down?

I tell you, this is really frustrating to watch.  I really hope that there’s a big cleansing after everyone gets their asses handed to them on a plate by the Cons because the game just isn’t played the traditional way any more.  The Cons own the media that you’re trying to use to get visibility and they’ll do everything they can to ensure that ‘your big call out to the nation’ gets lost somewhere on page S12 of the Sports section.

When drug addicts push themselves to the point of ruin, do you keep giving them crack so they can get high again?  No.  You cut them off.  Canadians should be telling fringe parties like the Greens and the NDP to do the same thing because they’re just throwing their money away.

And don’t think your choices won’t be noticed.  A big F-you to the media conglomerates in this country would get you a hell of a lot more attention that killing another tree for BCE Inc’s sake.

MayDay 2011: Shame on the CBC

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Shame on the CBC.

SHAME!!

The CBC is a publicly funded institution that is blocking out legitimate debate in Canada’s 2011 election.

For the record, I only want Elizabeth May to join the debates because we need to see that the Green Party is more like the Conservatives than any other mainstream party.  As such, her presence would actually fracture the Conservative vote as opposed to dilute the centre-left vote.

That said, I have a modest proposal:  we find a way to have a “non-broadcast consortium” debate that leaders of ALL parties are welcome to join in on.

We need to send a message to all of the broadcasters – including the CBC – that elections are important to Canadians and that this kind of ‘shaping’ of the debates is counter to the democratic ideals of all Canadians.

We need to methodically block them out of the process and take this into our hands.

Of course, I’m useless when it comes to building something like this, but here’s how I see it working:

  • YouTube or Vimeo based
  • Users can pose questions
  • Leaders respond to those questions
  • It can either be real-time or delayed, but it would be important that each leader post their own video response to the questions
  • Answers to questions would be circulated to the users that posted the question AND the network of people that they follow

The absence of any leader would be to their detriment because they will lose out on opportunities to influence a growing volume of Canadians that RELY on social platforms to get their information.

So (and here’s the lame part) … can anyone help me get this going?  If it already exists (is LeadNow doing something like this?), please post a source and link below and I’ll do my best to circulate it.

Canada’s Only Hope: An Orange-Green Merger

Igantieff bullied his way to the top.

  • The result:  the Federal Liberals are lower in the polls today (23%) than they were under Dion’s ‘peak’ (26%).
  • The result:  the ‘progressive’ contingent of the Liberal Party of Canada looks to be prepared to take a walk.

The Green Party of Canada AND the NDP are gaining on Canada’s ‘traditional’ parties.

  • The result:  combined, the Green and NDP represent more than 29% of decided voters.  This is a far cry from the 37% that the Cons currently register, but if you were to look at the numbers by riding (which I don’t have), I’m willing to bet that the combined impact would lead to a much higher polling in valuable urban ridings than the Conservative base of rural locations.
  • The result:  it’s conceivable that if an election were held today, the NDP might hold as many seats as the Liberals.

What does this all mean?  The Greens and the NDP MUST drop their gloves, get together, agree on their differences and lead this country into the future.

Let’s face it:  there are only 3-4 central issues that separate the two parties.  We must encourage all of the representatives from both parties to do the following:

  1. Show the door to the leaders of the NDP and the Greens.  I will never vote for the NDP again as long as Jack Layton is in charge, and I think millions of Canadians feel the same way.  He delivered a minority government to Stephen Harper, not once but TWICE.  He has kept this man in power and he has blood on his hands.  Elizabeth May has drifted unsuccessfully to three different ridings in the past and has not chosen winnable ridings.  More importantly, it’s been about Elizabeth May and not the Green Party of Canada in the last three elections.
  2. Get together.  Talk.  Write.  Set up a wiki.  Find your differences and put them aside.  You’ll find that you have more in common than you have keeping you apart.
  3. Create solid, consistent and unique policy.
  4. Pick a single leader with dozens of talented people to support him/her.
  5. Win seats.

With Ignatieff’s Liberals about to implode and the Harper Conservatives poised to make impromptu visits to Geneva to defend their war crimes in Afghanistan, there’s no time like the present to respond to all Canadians with a progressive platform.

It’s that simple.  We need action today, so lobby your local MPs, candidates and the leaders of these two parties.

Canada’s future depends on it.

Canadian Election: Next Steps

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Well, another day, another $300,000,000 down the drain.

Or was it?

Last night, Canada voted.  What did we prove?

Here are my thoughts.

The two ‘traditional’ parties (Conservatives & Liberals) are flailing:

  • The Cons got (nearly) the same vote as the last election
  • The Liberals got pounded and Dion has already made his ‘I’ll do what you want’ speech

The NDP & Greens did exceptionally well

  • Popular vote for both parties was up from 2006

Canadians are getting more and more apathetic about a right that few around the globe has.

So what to make of it all?  My gut reaction is that Liberal seats in key Ontario ridings were not necessarily surrendered to a desire to elect Conservatives, but to NDP & Green strength.  This will continue to happen in future elections.  In fact, I think we all knew this would happen this time and even feared it would be worse.

But again, what does it mean?  With the NDP and Greens getting nearly as much popular vote as the Liberals (25% combined NDP & Green vs 26.2% Liberal), and conceivably more seats than the Conservatives (because no one but blue-dudes seem to vote in Alberta and no one but separatists seem to vote in Quebec), I feel that the NDP and Greens need some way to get together and consolidate their views.  And more importantly, votes.  In time, I hope to do or find a full analysis, but supposition will hopefully do for now 🙂

I would go further and argue that with the Liberals being dead and dying (you’re either a middle-of-ground progressive like Dion who won’t make any progress with real progressive options or a hard-right red Conservative like Ignatieff), the Liberals might even want to join the party before they do another joke of a leadership race.  Save some money, save some embarassment.  Do what Canadians are asking you to do.

Next steps?

In the short-term, the greatest priority for both Layton and Dion should be the introduction of Proportional Representation legislation.  Show leadership.  It’s time we acknowledge that Canada represents a wide array of views and these views should be present in the House of Commons.

DON’T OVER-COMPLICATE IT.  We either vote for PR or we don’t.  Don’t create messy ‘formulas’ that will distract voters.

Longer-term (assuming we don’t get PR), Jack Layton needs to speak to Elizabeth May about merging parties to avoid more erosion of the progressive voice in favour of Conservatives.  Both parties would come out ahead because Greens would shed the notion that they’re ‘yellow blues’ and NDPers would earn a much stronger environmental platform.

Failing all that, we have to be happy with what we got.  Again and again and again and again.

Last thoughts?  I remain optimistic:  let’s start negotiating and get the ball rolling.

Canadian Election: Best / Worst Moments

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As the election looms, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on the 2008 Canadian election and let you know what I thought were the top best/worst moments for me.  Please post yours below as well – I would appreciate your thoughts.

The best moments for me, in no particular order, were the following:

  1. This rant , which was nominated ‘best rant of the day’.  Thank you.  I think.
  2. Stephen Harper breaking his own law about election timing.  This is a ‘best’ because it shows how low he will stoop to avoid getting caught in an economic meltdown.  Ooops.
  3. The bid to have this election called illegal.  Good luck.
  4. Minority governments.  They prove that democracy does work.  Unless you want a dictatorship.
  5. Economic havoc.  Yes, in a sick sadistic kind of way, because it proved that Harper can flip and flop just like the rest of us.  Stay the course, my ass.  Also, when a recession or depression comes, he will be holding the reins of the worst economic situation in 70 years.  It ruined Bennett and it will ruin Harper.
  6. Elizabeth May being part of the debate (singular – see worst moments below).
  7. Jack Layton’s bid for PM.  I think he might actually have a chance if we wade through the fear-mongering by the Liberals.
  8. Best quote:  "Laissez-faire, I don’t care", which goes to Dion.
  9. The Internet.  However, we have to sooooo much better the next time around to ensure that the Conservatives are humiliated at every term.  I’d do it, but I’m not creative enough.  Special kudos to the Department of Culture .
  10. rabble.ca election coverage :  best on the PLANET.  Good job.  Just a small example of #9.
  11. Lack of (serious) coverage of the judgement related to the Cadman tapes.  Harper broke the law, right?  Where’s the RCMP?  Why are the other parties not jumping all over this?

The worst moments, again in no order:

  1. Defense budgets.  Stephen Harper has made a very silent pledge to spend nearly $500 billion on his cronies in the defense industry, leaving taxpayers footing the bill.  When we won’t even have a war in a little more than two years.  What the hell is all the money for, Steve?
  2. Listeriosis proves that private-sector management of food is not a good idea.  I’m sure the 20-30 families affected by this tragedy have lots to thank you for this weekend, Steve.
  3. Canadian democracy and the mockery that our leaders and media make of it.  I believe that we will have a democracy when you vote for something and not against something.  I also feel that we will not live in a democracy until the progressive parties talk coalition and we have proportional representation as the first bill in the new House of Commons.
  4. Strategic voting.  I have come to have little faith in this tactic.  However, if you really want to support Liberals (that have lied their way to office many, many times), please do so.
  5. Scare mongering.  Not once did Stephen Harper pull out actual numbers that would justify his threats against Dion, at least that I ever heard.  And not once did Dion actually take a moment to describe in layman’s terms that the Green Shift would result in a 3-4 cent increase at the gas pump.
  6. The sweater vest ads.  Truly sickening because they shows utter contempt for the intelligence of the average Canadian.
  7. The pooping puffin.  Harper’s marketing team is going to start selling us the next war (probably Iran) and this is the best stuff they can come up with.  What’s next?  Online boxing with Ahmadinejad?
  8. Last-minute shows of commitment.  Stephen Harper’s shameless bid to shore up votes in Windsor by plopping a few million into an assembly plant.  Way to prop up Ontario, Steve!
  9. Stephen Harper suggesting this is a great time to buy into the market.  With what?  Chairs that I was going to use for firewood?  Rugs that I use for blankets?
  10. Stephen Harper leaking that there would likely be a cut in interest rates.  At least twelve hours before the fact.  Shame.
  11. Election coverage.  Mainstream media sucks and we need a completely different way of doing things when the next election occurs.
  12. Stephen Harper muzzling all of his candidates .  If this is how they treat their candidates during an election, imagine how they’ll treat us with a majority.

Also, as the campaign progressed, I learned a lot about what might happen if Stephen Harper became the leader of a majority Conservative government.  Here are just a few thoughts:

  1. A Stephen Harper majority would mean more financial disaster because banks would have merged or been gobbled up by foreign companies, leaving more toxic crap behind than a bitumen plant in Northern Alberta.
  2. Other Canadian institutions (the CMHC, the CBC, the AECL etc) would all go on the chopping block in order to finance ridiculous tax cut programs for corporations.
  3. Many, many deaths from listeriosis and other food-related outbreaks as inspections are privatized.
  4. A Stephen Harper majority would have been a severe blow to human rights.  Everywhere.  No more same-sex marriages.  No more abortions (you must breed now, whether you like it or not!).  No more rights for under-age criminals with minor transgressions.  Welcome to Guantanamo, folks!
  5. More and more severe slashing of corporate taxes and massive accumulation of debt, generating inflation and an unstable financial environment.
  6. More support for carbon-based industries then ever before.
  7. The complete deletion of any programs related to the environment.
  8. Two-year mandatory work-terms in the Tar Sands!!

OK … so maybe the last one might be a little extreme, so I’ll back off, lest I give Conservatives any ideas.

And yes, several of the last set of comments justify some of the scare-mongering.  Vote with your conscience tomorrow and be proud to be a Canadian!!