Tag Archives: unite the right

MayDay 2011: Alternatives for Conservatives (repost)

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For most of us, there should be no doubt that the Conservative Party of Canada is broken and represents everything that’s wrong in the world:

  • Poor fiscal management
  • Broken promises
  • Corruption and contempt for Parliament
  • Ignoring your beliefs and value system

Take heart if you’re a small-c conservative and you’re looking for someone that’s not a crook or someone that’s willing to spin any lie just to grab your vote!  There are many alternatives out there.

Seriously.  Here are just a few:

The Green Party (Site)

I fully admit that this (and all summaries below) is a very superficial summary, but the Green Party represents some of the following basic principles:

  • Let the market do what the market does best
  • No deficit
  • Lower taxes on personal income
  • Proportional representation
  • Taxes on waste

In essence, they feel to me like a libertarian party, but with a shade of green.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Don’t believe the mainstream media: the Green Party of Canada is not a ‘lefty’ party ‘full of hippies’.  The Canadian Greens put the market in front of most of their policies and most of their platform has a vibe of ‘white collar’ politics.  While they’re very popular with young voters, most seniors tend to vote Green because they want to stay ‘mainstream’ while also staying faithful to small-c conservative values.

Libertarian Party (Site)

The Libertarians are strong believers that the government should not be in our lives in any way, shape or form.  The less government, the better.

The resulting promise of less government is lower taxes, reduced waste and less frustration for those who simply want to get on with their lives.

If you’re not familiar with the Libertarians, a very famous one is Ron Paul in the US.  Ron Paul is a Republican from Texas, but doesn’t believe in the largesse of government that has been brought about by all parties, including those of a conservative bent.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Libertarians attract those that have had enough with promises, regardless of how much (or little) they will cost.

To see if you’re a Libertarian, try their Canadian quiz.  You may be surprised just how closely you’re aligned with their beliefs!

Canadian Action Party (Site)

One of the central planks of the Canadian Action Party is their demand that we get rid of the Bank of Canada.

While most of their other policies rank towards the left of the spectrum, this one puts them squarely in the middle of Libertarian territory, as Ron Paul has been an advocate of abolition of the Federal Reserve and deficit financing for many years.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

To be honest, I’m not so sure there’s a good answer to this question, but if there’s not a Libertarian or Green candidate in your riding, these may prove to be a good alternative.

Another reason why you would consider them: like the old Reform folks, they’re very supportive of an Elected Senate. Unlike the NDP – which would do away with the Senate altogether – the Canadian Action Party would fill the gap left when the Reform Party was vapourized in 2003.

Christian Heritage Party of Canada (Site)

I’ll go on record and remind everyone that I’m not a fan of the Christian Heritage Party (CHP), but I am a fan of democracy and it’s certainly their right to be out there soliciting votes.

The CHP is the only party to my knowledge that asserts its religious affiliation (Judeo-Christian) in the general public and is a viable option for all of those people that have been supporting the Conservative Party of Canada but who have yet to see progress made on issues like abortion, same-sex marriages and so on.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

If you used to be an Alliance member or simply want to see more overt religion in the policy-making that happens in this country, this is the party for you.

Since the ‘Unite the Right’ campaign washed all of these stronger theological discussions under the table, you’ve been struggling to find a voice with mainstream parties and you’re more than happy to support those that ACTUALLY reflect your value systems and who don’t pretend to reflect them just to grab a vote.

Pirate Party of Canada (Site)

The Pirate Party of Canada got its start when our government began to crack down on people that were using file-sharing and copyrighted materials for personal use.

They reflect the popular Pirate Party in Europe that actually won a number of seats in

There aren’t many candidates in this election, but the party is growing and we expect them to add candidates as the campaign progresses towards May 2.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

While the PPC may be seen as a single-issue party, they have a Libertarian bent that’s very refreshing, particularly if you’re young and you believe in openness, transparency and the elimination of copyright regulations that favour big companies and cost consumers billions each year.

Progressive Canadian Party (once the Progressive Conservatives) (Site)

The Progressive Canadian Party (PCP) is what remains from the aftermath of the Unite the Right campaign in 2003 that saw Stephen Harper consolidate and take control of the following parties:

  • Conservatives
  • Reform Party of Canada
  • Alliance Party

Or … CRAP as an acronym.  Sorry … my anti-Conservative bias is showing 🙂

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Any ‘Red Tory’ would be proud to vote for the Progressive Canadian Party, as they continue to reflect the softer side that the Conservatives lost when Stephen Harper took the reins of the CPC.

Most of the memes related to ‘family’ and religion are absent from the guiding principles of the party.  Instead they focus on unique concepts like sustainability, ‘100 mile diets’, education, health care with some injection of private business and so on.

United Party of Canada (Site)

The United Party of Canada (UPC) is another recent response to the last election where dark-blue Conservatives ran rough over basic principles related to balance, equity and fairness.

Most of their policies reflect this response, including the following directions:

Why would a conservative vote for them?

The party is described as being centrist and would appeal to those ‘Red Tories’ that don’t have a Progressive Canadian candidate running in their riding.

Western Block Party (Site)

The Western Block Party offers those west of Ontario to consolidate their vote and influence into something more tangible, much like the Bloc Quebecois has in the past with Quebec.

The greatest challenge with the WBP is that the founder was the lawyer that represented Ernst Zundel, famous Holocaust denier.  Unfortunately, this taints the party somewhat, but if they are able to focus on the primacy of the West, they’ll be able to attract votes from Albertans, Manitobans, BCers and those from Saskatchewan.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Despite the potential to be seen as a separatist or racist party, conservatives in the West that feel ‘left out’ by their party (including the Conservative Party of Canada) and who don’t believe that Quebec should be pulling all of the strings when it comes to politics will find a home here.

Online Party of Canada (Site)

While the Online Party of Canada is relatively new, there’s a possibility that they may gain momentum – even in this election – because of some of their unique policy platform ideas.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Even though they’re a relatively ‘fresh’ party, they have potential to attract a lot of conservatives that want Canada to advance as a republic as opposed to a commonwealth country.

CONCLUSION

If you’re a small-c conservative, don’t feel overwhelmed, ignored or lost when it comes to going to the polls on May 2.

THERE ARE OPTIONS and it’s up to you to exercise your right to vote those options.

Of course, if I’ve missed any alternatives, please post them in comments below.

MayDay 2011: Alternatives for Conservatives

Posted on by 3 comments

For most of us, there should be no doubt that the Conservative Party of Canada is broken and represents everything that’s wrong in the world:

  • Poor fiscal management
  • Broken promises
  • Corruption and contempt for Parliament
  • Ignoring your beliefs and value system

Take heart if you’re a small-c conservative and you’re looking for someone that’s not a crook or someone that’s willing to spin any lie just to grab your vote!  There are many alternatives out there.

Seriously.  Here are just a few:

The Green Party (Site)

I fully admit that this (and all summaries below) is a very superficial summary, but the Green Party represents some of the following basic principles:

  • Let the market do what the market does best
  • No deficit
  • Lower taxes on personal income
  • Proportional representation
  • Taxes on waste

In essence, they feel to me like a libertarian party, but with a shade of green.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Don’t believe the mainstream media: the Green Party of Canada is not a ‘lefty’ party ‘full of hippies’.  The Canadian Greens put the market in front of most of their policies and most of their platform has a vibe of ‘white collar’ politics.  While they’re very popular with young voters, most seniors tend to vote Green because they want to stay ‘mainstream’ while also staying faithful to small-c conservative values.

Libertarian Party (Site)

The Libertarians are strong believers that the government should not be in our lives in any way, shape or form.  The less government, the better.

The resulting promise of less government is lower taxes, reduced waste and less frustration for those who simply want to get on with their lives.

If you’re not familiar with the Libertarians, a very famous one is Ron Paul in the US.  Ron Paul is a Republican from Texas, but doesn’t believe in the largesse of government that has been brought about by all parties, including those of a conservative bent.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Libertarians attract those that have had enough with promises, regardless of how much (or little) they will cost.

To see if you’re a Libertarian, try their Canadian quiz.  You may be surprised just how closely you’re aligned with their beliefs!

Canadian Action Party (Site)

One of the central planks of the Canadian Action Party is their demand that we get rid of the Bank of Canada.

While most of their other policies rank towards the left of the spectrum, this one puts them squarely in the middle of Libertarian territory, as Ron Paul has been an advocate of abolition of the Federal Reserve and deficit financing for many years.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

To be honest, I’m not so sure there’s a good answer to this question, but if there’s not a Libertarian or Green candidate in your riding, these may prove to be a good alternative.

Another reason why you would consider them: like the old Reform folks, they’re very supportive of an Elected Senate. Unlike the NDP – which would do away with the Senate altogether – the Canadian Action Party would fill the gap left when the Reform Party was vapourized in 2003.

Christian Heritage Party of Canada (Site)

I’ll go on record and remind everyone that I’m not a fan of the Christian Heritage Party (CHP), but I am a fan of democracy and it’s certainly their right to be out there soliciting votes.

The CHP is the only party to my knowledge that asserts its religious affiliation (Judeo-Christian) in the general public and is a viable option for all of those people that have been supporting the Conservative Party of Canada but who have yet to see progress made on issues like abortion, same-sex marriages and so on.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

If you used to be an Alliance member or simply want to see more overt religion in the policy-making that happens in this country, this is the party for you.

Since the ‘Unite the Right’ campaign washed all of these stronger theological discussions under the table, you’ve been struggling to find a voice with mainstream parties and you’re more than happy to support those that ACTUALLY reflect your value systems and who don’t pretend to reflect them just to grab a vote.

Pirate Party of Canada (Site)

The Pirate Party of Canada got its start when our government began to crack down on people that were using file-sharing and copyrighted materials for personal use.

They reflect the popular Pirate Party in Europe that actually won a number of seats in

There aren’t many candidates in this election, but the party is growing and we expect them to add candidates as the campaign progresses towards May 2.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

While the PPC may be seen as a single-issue party, they have a Libertarian bent that’s very refreshing, particularly if you’re young and you believe in openness, transparency and the elimination of copyright regulations that favour big companies and cost consumers billions each year.

Progressive Canadian Party (once the Progressive Conservatives) (Site)

The Progressive Canadian Party (PCP) is what remains from the aftermath of the Unite the Right campaign in 2003 that saw Stephen Harper consolidate and take control of the following parties:

  • Conservatives
  • Reform Party of Canada
  • Alliance Party

Or … CRAP as an acronym.  Sorry … my anti-Conservative bias is showing 🙂

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Any ‘Red Tory’ would be proud to vote for the Progressive Canadian Party, as they continue to reflect the softer side that the Conservatives lost when Stephen Harper took the reins of the CPC.

Most of the memes related to ‘family’ and religion are absent from the guiding principles of the party.  Instead they focus on unique concepts like sustainability, ‘100 mile diets’, education, health care with some injection of private business and so on.

United Party of Canada (Site)

The United Party of Canada (UPC) is another recent response to the last election where dark-blue Conservatives ran rough over basic principles related to balance, equity and fairness.

Most of their policies reflect this response, including the following directions:

Why would a conservative vote for them?

The party is described as being centrist and would appeal to those ‘Red Tories’ that don’t have a Progressive Canadian candidate running in their riding.

Western Block Party (Site)

The Western Block Party offers those west of Ontario to consolidate their vote and influence into something more tangible, much like the Bloc Quebecois has in the past with Quebec.

The greatest challenge with the WBP is that the founder was the lawyer that represented Ernst Zundel, famous Holocaust denier.  Unfortunately, this taints the party somewhat, but if they are able to focus on the primacy of the West, they’ll be able to attract votes from Albertans, Manitobans, BCers and those from Saskatchewan.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Despite the potential to be seen as a separatist or racist party, conservatives in the West that feel ‘left out’ by their party (including the Conservative Party of Canada) and who don’t believe that Quebec should be pulling all of the strings when it comes to politics will find a home here.

Online Party of Canada (Site)

While the Online Party of Canada is relatively new, there’s a possibility that they may gain momentum – even in this election – because of some of their unique policy platform ideas.

Why would a conservative vote for them?

Even though they’re a relatively ‘fresh’ party, they have potential to attract a lot of conservatives that want Canada to advance as a republic as opposed to a commonwealth country.

CONCLUSION

If you’re a small-c conservative, don’t feel overwhelmed, ignored or lost when it comes to going to the polls on May 2.

THERE ARE OPTIONS and it’s up to you to exercise your right to vote those options.

Of course, if I’ve missed any alternatives, please post them in comments below.

Uniting the Progressive Vote in Canada

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Reposted on request

Ron Love, organizer of the ‘United Alternative’, explained in this article how his efforts to unite the right paid off in 2000 and how they continue to pay off as Stephen Harper comes closer and closer to a majority government.  He shares his wisdom for the ‘left’ and demonstrates what ‘we’ need to do in order to mount a force that could oppose the ‘right’.

Read it.  Digest it.  Critique it.

And then you’ll realize that his basic premise couldn’t be more wrong .

I don’t think the ‘left’ should subject itself to the same kind of ham-fisted tyrannical forces that the right did.  What allowed the right to unite is that they had common ground that could arguably be found outside the political spectrum, such as religious dogma.  As a result, their basic political program (that which they revealed to Canadians in their public platform) was easily agreed upon by all of the founding members.  Examples:  neo-con economic policies (including disclosure of what they would do if they had a majority, like sell off public assets and allow banks to merge), tough on crime policies and money for defense.  The ‘Progressive’ part of the Conservatives disappeared.  Even Mulroney looks like a socialist compared to some of the ex-Harris brown shirts.

However, in this process of consolidating the voters of the ‘right’, the right did something that only the right seems capable of doing:  they put a lid on democratic process.  Yes, the process of choosing their leader was ‘democratic’, but it was also negotiated through a number of concessions, many of which I’m sure Peter Mackay is still stinging from.

You see, too much has to be surrendered in order to ‘unite’.  At least if you’re with the ‘right’.

On the ‘left’ – or what I prefer to call ‘progressive’ – side of the country, we have become the ‘bucket’ for everything that the Conservatives are not.  Green.  Socialist.  Marijuana Party.  Liberals.  Without speaking for anyone else, I feel that putting such a divergent range of political viewpoints into a single ‘bucket’ would destroy my sense of democracy.

Someone like Ron Love might argue that the ‘left’ would need to find a steady middle ground as we face media pressure and scrutiny, but I think that can only lead to failure because so many opinions and views would be left scattered at the perimeter.

More importantly, this viewpoint doesn’t reflect the Long Tail of politics, where everybody should be able to have an opinion and these opinions are negotiated (however long it takes) rationally in a legal setting, such as the House of Commons.

It fails to reflect the ‘socialization’ of politics, where everyone should be entitled to an opinion and a voice at the table.

At the core of my opposition to this kind of ‘ramming of the right’ comes the notion that people need to be able to express their point of view and they need to do it within a democratic framework.  The Harper campaign has and continues to focus on leadership.  A single person.  Anything else would be tantamount to anarchy.

So, Mr. Love, you’re wrong to assume that progressive voices in Canada want to be silenced or marginalized into a single voice.  We represent an orchestra.  A choir.  All singing different parts, hopefully in great harmony.

In the short-run, this would take shape as a coalition that represented a balance of progressive opinions.  It would take the form of many people making many educated and informed decisions, with a lot of discussion taking place.  In public and not behind closed doors.

The long-run it’s Proportional Representation where the single angry voice of the right is muted by the rising swell of an entire chorus.

How Canada’s Divided Left Can Get it Right

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Ron Love, organizer of the ‘United Alternative’, explains in this article how his efforts to unite the right paid off in 2000 and how they continue to pay off as Stephen Harper comes closer and closer to a majority government.  He shares his wisdom for the ‘left’ and demonstrates what ‘we’ need to do in order to mount a force that could oppose the ‘right’.

Read it.  Digest it.  Critique it.

And then you’ll realize that his basic premise couldn’t be more wrong .

My guess is that the ‘left’ probably won’t subject itself to the same kind of ham-fisted tyrannical forces that the right did.  What allowed the right to unite is that they had common ground that could arguably be found outside the political spectrum, such as religious dogma.  As a result, their basic political program (that which they revealed to Canadians in their public platform) was easily agreed upon by all of the founding members.  Examples:  neo-con economic policies (including disclosure of what they would do if they had a majority, like sell off public assets and allow banks to merge), tough on crime policies and money for defense.  The ‘Progressive’ part of the Conservatives disappeared.  Even Mulroney looks like a socialist compared to some of the ex-Harris brown shirts.

The challenge for the ‘left’ is that we have become the ‘bucket’ for everything that the Conservatives are not.  Green.  Socialist.  Marijuana Party.  Liberals.  Without speaking for anyone else, I feel that putting such a divergent range of political viewpoints into a single ‘bucket’ would destroy my sense of democracy.

Someone like Ron Love might argue that the ‘left’ would need to find a steady middle ground as we face media pressure and scrutiny, but I think that can only lead to failure because so many opinions and views would be left scattered at the perimeter.

Here’s an example:  right now it looks like Michael Ignatieff is the front-runner for the Liberals.  He has brow-beat every socialist and person with a cause into voting Liberal already and I would NEVER vote for the man if he lead a coalition group of progressive parties.  His views are just marginally left of Harper and if it were up to him, we’d be in Iraq today shooting babies.

More importantly, this viewpoint doesn’t reflect the Long Tail of politics, where everybody should be able to have an opinion and these opinions are negotiated (however long it takes) rationally in a legal setting, such as the House of Commons.

At the core of my opposition to this kind of ‘ramming of the right’ comes the notion that people need to be able to express their point of view and they need to do it within a democratic framework.  The Harper campaign has and continues to focus on leadership.  A single person.  Anything else would be tantamount to anarchy.

So, Mr. Love, you’re wrong to assume that progressive voices in Canada want to be silenced or marginalized into a single voice.  We represent an orchestra.  A choir.  All singing different parts, hopefully in great harmony.

In the short-run, this would take shape as a coalition that represented a balance of progressive opinions.  It would take the form of many people making many educated and informed decisions, with a lot of discussion taking place.  In public and not behind closed doors.

The long-run it’s Proportional Representation where the single angry voice of the right is muted by the rising swell of an entire chorus.