04.10.2011 09:05 AM

KCCCC Day 16: NNW linkage day

  • It’s Sunday, and a day of rest…sort of. Quickie bits on assorted NNW-influenced subjects below!
  • It’s an election!  Time to write the obligatory ad and image “experts” story! I don’t know the other woman, but Bernie Gauthier is a smart cat. That said, I suspect Bernie is amused as I am by the regular-as-the-seasons predictability of some assignment editors, who get these types of “expert says” stories written up every damn campaign.  Newsflash from the back rooms, assignment editors:  no advertising people, with precious few exceptions, have ever done political advertising.  They know dick about political communications. So why call them experts on political ads?  Ditto most of the self-appointed image consultants: the best image, every smart campaign knows, is the one that is truthful – and the best “look” for a politician is the one that is truly them. Simple.
  • Is Stephen Harper hated by the media? No more and no less than other Prime Ministers, I’d say: Trudeau was openly detested by many Gallery folks in the latter years; Clark, Campbell and Turner were ridiculed throughout their brief reigns; Mulroney was distinctly unloved in the second half; Chretien was called a “dictator” and worse; Martin was “Dithers” and so on.  The PM-Gallery relationship is a useful hate-hate relationship, in both directions: a leader’s core like it when he dismisses/disrespects his/her ink-stained detractors – and all writers write better when they have a villain.  Thus, as one of the bosses to both Bono et moi told me this week, the Toronto Sun would not have existed, and flourished, had it not been for Pierre Trudeau.  Both sides gave each other something to swing at.  It balances the universe.  Yin and yang, etc.
  • How is our Invisible War going? As you may recall, a few weeks ago, our Prime Minister (a) declared war on Libya (b) started to help bomb Libya and (c) called an election in Canada.  Thus, this must-read column by my colleague Mercedes, who has forgotten more about the military than Harper will ever know.  We are indeed hypocrites, as she writes – and it is foolhardy to believe we will ever triumph in Libya (as in Iraq and Afghanistan). Never get involved in a land war in Asia, as Gen. McArthur once said; we shouldn’t have (but did) in Libya.
  • Nanos Nick’s nightlies: Cons 39, Libs 31, Dippers in deep shit, here. Will the Cons win?  Seems likely.  Will they win a majority?  Seems highly unlikely.  Will Con, Lib and Dipper folks ask on May 3 why they didn’t resist the temptation to have an election? Seems inevitable!
  • Caption contest!

“On top of old smo-key, I saw the latest elections polls!  And for my Diiiii-ppers, they are for the whom the bell tolls!”




  1. MontrealElite says:

    Jack Layton, exit stage far left.

  2. Cath says:

    (sing to the tune of Where Have All The Flowers Gone)

    “Where have all the Dippers gone………..long time passing,
    Where have all the Dippers gone…………..long time ago.
    Where have all the Dippers gone…………..gone to party graveyards every one,

    When will they ever learn,
    When will they NEVER learn.”

  3. Juan says:

    Libya is in Africa.

    • Warren says:

      No shit, Sherlock. Good thing I didn’t write a book about Libya, or anything.

      • Mike says:

        I admit, I too kinda did a double-take on the statement about McArthur, but knew what you were getting at. Saw one opinion piece in which the author used “MENA”. Had to ponder that one for say 20 seconds before realizing what the acronym meant. Communicating with brevity is tough, I’d say. Long story short, I enjoy your blog.

    • Bryan Peeler says:

      At the risk of getting the same reply, this quote is from The Princess Bride. There is no evidence McArthur ever said this.

  4. Cath says:

    “Nanos Nick?s nightlies: Cons 39, Libs 31, Dippers in deep shit, here. Will the Cons win? Seems likely. Will they win a majority? Seems highly unlikely. Will Con, Lib and Dipper folks ask on May 3 why they didn?t resist the temptation to have an election? Seems inevitable!”

    I would have agreed with all of the above last week Warren but so far everywhere I go, whether, no matter what party the people I speak with belong to, the anger over having this election is so thick and everything else is moot. Next, comes the waste of money this election is. On those two items alone I can see a Harper majority within reach because, no one in their right mind wants another election any time soon. The best way to ensure four years of leaving Canadians alone? Well, you can see where this is heading. “Why didn’t they resist the temptation to have an election?” You’ve been consistent there all along. It didn’t have to be this way. Whoever put us in this spot will pay the price. First Layton’s NDP will crumble because he’s the guy who could have change this outcome….but didn’t. Next, Mr. Ignatieff will feel the heat because what’s keeping him afloat is the Liberal brand, it’s not Iggy himself. Just one person’s opinion.

    • Namesake says:

      Cat coughs up another hairball.

      The last two costly “needless elections” were precipitated by Captain Waste. And in this case, they’re over half-way into the mandate, so it’s further evidence of the CPC & its supporters’ mighty suspect bookkeeping to try to chalk up the whole cost to holding it now rather than 18 months from now when it would have to be at the latest: it has to be pro-rated.

      So, the q. is, is it worth $100-M or so to turf out a contemptuous government now instead of waiting until the Fall of next year before it racks up billions more in suspect programs & purchases and offloads untold billions of costs onto the provinces due to its dumb on crime policies? Hell, yeah.

      • Cath says:

        Is there something about “one person’s opinion” that you don’t understand namesake? And let’s low ball the true cost of this election to Canadians shall we – at minimum $300million – what napkin did you get your figures from.

        See….just noise.

        News to Namesake – the NDP’s done.

        • smelter rat says:

          For the price of 1 G20 session on Toronto, we could have 4 federal elections with enough change left over for a double double.

        • JH says:

          You are not permitted by the censor and uberposter to have a differing opinion. That is very obvious. And when you run out of valid arguments just become insulting and derogatory, that works. It’s too bad really, because I’m sure many folks like to visit sites of various political persuasions and join in. They inform and it’s good to get people’s differing perspectives on the issues of the day. Because of background and experience WK’s is one of the best available to do this. However since it also has its very own Cato on hand, it takes a lot of the pleasure out of it.
          ‘Carthage must be destroyed’

        • Namesake says:

          What part of “pro-rated” don’t you understand, Cat/h? It’s a mistake to chalk up the whole cost of the election as a waste, when one is going to have to be held before too long, anyway. An election is like buying a four-year rental agreement on a new Parliament, and over half of the mandate has expired already… roughly two-thirds of it. So we’re only “wasting” one-third by ripping up the rest of the lease early: i.e., $100-M or so.

    • Chris says:

      You cons are really pushing this “election anger” angle.

      It seems to me that most conservative supporters are angry most of the time anyway, so your anecdotal data isn’t really that useful.

      I haven’t talked with a single person who is unhappy with this election happening.

      It seems so strange to be angry about an election – this is how our democracy works, it is part of what makes Canada a great country.

      Go ask an Egyptian or Libyan if they would be angry about having a democratic election. I would think that they would be thankful for the opportunity to have their voice heard.

      • nic coivert says:

        I’ve heard many different angles and takes on this election and I have yet to hear an unprompted complaint about the election. Asking people if they are happy to have an election now is a form of prompting. Practically a rhetorical question. And one that leads nowhere.

      • kitt says:

        Election anger? In whose wet dreams?

    • Harper has had a hand in forcing or calling two of the last three elections. In the last he broke his own election law and went the polls even as the world economy was tanking. That’s being responsible?

      People might be angry about “needless elections”, but those same people for the most part are either a) rabid partisans or b) misinformed. Both groups are entitled to their opinions but that doesn’t mean they have a point.

      I do think it important that this sense be addressed on debate nights. The leader(s) successful at changing public perception, or reinforcing bad perceptions, will be the real winner(s).

  5. MontrealElite says:

    Chris Alexander on QP now….give that man a paper bag….hyperventilate much?

    • Mike says:

      Neophyte. You really have to cut the guy some slack,–you know, the “honeymoon” thing. Hope he was better as a diplomat. Nevertheless, vote Mark Holland–woot!

      • The Doctor says:

        A hyperventilation contest between Chris Alexander and Mark Holland? My money would be on Holland.

        • Namesake says:

          no, he was literally breathing very hard. Maybe he was just out of breath from running to make the Question Period show appearance on time, or something, because it did seem to improve w. time, but it was disconcerting, and I actually googled to see if he had emphysema or if anyone else has noted his laboured breathing.

  6. Namesake says:

    Far too early to call, what with it only being a third of the way in, and the very important debates yet to happen.

    But even if we confine it to the Nanos poll, look at the progress:

    The CPC-LPC gap from the Feb. (completed Feb. 11-14) results which ‘Mark in Ontario’ discouraged you so much with were:

    13.1% nationally, and unofficially, 19.4% for the ROC (excl. QC) & 9.3% for the three most in play regions (ON & Atl & BC)

    and now (field dates April 7-9, 2011):

    7.9% nationally, and unofficially, 12.6% for the ROC (excl. QC) & 5.9% for the three most in play regions (ON & Atl & BC)

    i.e., absolute drops of 5.2, 6.8, and 3.4 points, respectively…

    or relative improvements of 40, 35 and 36%, respectively, in those point gaps.

    And that’s with all the renewed blow-back about the needless election & reckless coalition & Just Visiting blah blah, and without much of an attack on the CPC’s actual record, yet.

    It ain’t over, especially the way the fat boy sings.

  7. Warren, you linked back to your March 21 (pre-election) post in which you said this about the LPC:

    “The Liberals are likely to lose seats, based on recent polls ? and they lack a ballot question, and have a dearth of nominated candidates. Meanwhile, they?ve got a leader who is neither liked nor trusted.”

    Hasn’t the ballot question become clearer? And do you still stand by your assessment of MI? Ignatieff seems to be warming up. Is he still neither liked nor trusted as much as on March 21?

    • The Doctor says:

      I agree that the LPC seems far more likely to gain seats than lose them, especially with the NDP seeming so anemic and not appearing to have any strategy for countering Ignatieff. I too would be interested in WK’s updated take on this.

    • Mike says:

      Not that funny, George–try again. You could start with “A liberal and a Conservative were sitting at a bar…” and go from there.

    • Namesake says:

      well, except that fellow Grenier’s just averaging the various polls to come up with it being an 11-point gap, instead of, say, the 8 today’s Nanos has it at.

      and with only a third of the campaign down — the less important third — it’s way too soon to say that the Libs have peaked, much less peaked too soon.

      Do you also call hockey games at the end of the first period?

  8. JS Rothwell says:

    Beats being nuked Tulk

  9. Caption: Merde! He just broke my foot!

  10. Lance says:

    “If the Conservatives are reelected with a minority and the House of Commons lose confidence in them shortly after May 2nd, the governor general could ask if another party think it can obtain the confidence of the House. And I think M. Ignatieff could then try his luck” – Justin Trudeau


    So Ignatieff is going to try his luck. Good going, young Justin, ya let the cat out of the bag.

    I guess self inflicted wounds ARE the worst kind.

    • W.B. says:

      That’s how the system works. That is not a coalition. That’s a GG decision. “Try his luck” is exactly right, if the GG asks.

      • Namesake says:

        And this is exactly the scenario that Harper was reminding the GG that SHOULD be strongly considered to rec., back in ’05, particularly so soon after an election.

  11. George says:

    “Do you also call hockey games at the end of the first period?”

    Only if it’s the Leafs playing. I’m a ‘habs fan. Looks like Gilles is trying to get the French language debate changed because of the playoffs. NON! Maybe the Iggy/Harper square-off will be about hockey??? I pick Harper hands down – Donolo better be brushing Iggy up on his hockey knowledge if he wants to hold a candle to the other three
    in the French debate.

    • Instead of proposing to change the date of the debate, why not change the date of the hockey game? Better yet, let’s have les Canadiens fit into some Maple Leafs jerseys and play in Toronto. While Quebeckers watch the French language debate or some other goofy show, Torontonians can watch their new Leafs finally participate in the playoffs.

  12. reformatory says:

    Hypothetical Question for all budding strategists.

    Anybody have any thoughts on how the GRITS can become a force again in Quebec, and start to appeal to Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Alberta and BC? Is it grassroots issues, policy issues? And please don’t anybody say MI.. cause that’s a load of B&^%@. I’m looking for serious answers that address the root of the problem… beyond this election.

    The New Conservatives have a lock in Alberta, and an advantage in all the other Western Provinces. All they need to do is stay competitive in the rest of Canada and they can do okay in an election. For the Liberals….losing Quebec and without guaranteed seats in at least one other province is problematic.

    I’d love to hear some brilliant ideas on this topic.

    Please no Trolls, or Conservatives.. need respond. Your opinion is of no value to me!

    • Riley says:

      The liberals will only win support back if Quebec separates from Canada or all the bigots die. I grew up in rural Saskatchewan and the anti-Quebec/French feeling was very strong because Trudeau gave farmers the finger. The Liberal party, rightly or wrongly is seen as the party of Francophones. Dion lost because his English is terrible. Full stop. That’s why the Duffer’s ambush was so effective. It highlighted the obvious. Lots of people on the Prairies see Quebec as having been given favors by PMs from Quebec at the expense of resource based Western economies. People want fairness. They see Quebec and by extension the Liberal Party as unfair. They don’t thin it’s fair that Ignatieff was away for a long time and was then appointed Liberal leader instead of really elected by the party like the other party leaders. Etc. Fairness is the word that drives everything in conservative politics. From crime and sentencing to funding for “soft areas” like arts versus basic infrastructure and services to charter protection for GBLT persons etc. Conservatives are conservative bEcause they feel hard done by. They see their special privileges as pot-bellied old white guys slipping and they don’t like it so they’re out ranting. They don’t want to pay for anything that won’t be used directly by them.

      • reformatory says:

        Riley…. you’re a loser, and that is not the well thought out response I was looking for.

        Look your man Harper is Canada’s Nixon. He is way to obsessed and way to scary. He hires scandalous people who have criminal pasts as part of his entourage, he wastes millions on fake lakes and negative ads for his opponents, he has done nothing for the economy- in fact in 5 years we have had a paralyzed gov’t. He lied about income trusts, he keeps incompetent ministers in their posts. He mandates Kenney and Baird to be well you know Kenney and Baird. He lied about his intentions in the Senate, he does not practice democracy, heck he basically is an illegitimate PM who got in once by the ineptness of the RCMP, and second by the unfortunate gift provided by his opponents. He is way past his prime and for that matter even his capabilities… shall I get started on all the things that he is not fair or equal about? or shall I continue about how I really feel?

        You can take your CONservative blah blah blah and shove it!

        Now can I get some serious dialogue going here!:o)

        • Namesake says:

          I don’t read him that way at all, reformatory (since he gave the Cons a shot, as well), so I’ll apologize on your behalf for jumping down his throat: I think he was honestly telling you how non-partisan rural Westerners perceive the Libs…. and he gave you the answer you sought — find a leader who doesn’t off as ‘too French’ [check] and who can offer them something they’ll see as immediately or directly beneficial to themselves or their own families [which is why the Harperites are always emphasizing abolishing the gun registry, and maintaining or even expanding farm subsidies, and killing the Wheat Board, and income splitting, and banning flooding, and abolishing locusts and pestilence, and raining manna from heaven… but only on farms].

          • reformatory says:

            thanks for coming to his aid.. although I’m sure he can clarify for himself– what he meant– I read it as something else and still do. What shot did he give the CONS?.. come again- I did not see one. He is also wrong about Ignatieff being appointed.

            Either way- thanks for yur 2 cents– it does make more sense than Riley’s, and is a tad more specific- much appreciated.

        • Riley says:

          I don’t like the cons at all. I think their policies aren’t reality based. You misinterpreted my post. I was simply stating the obvious if you take the perspective of most Prairie voters. (the cons poll over 60% federally while Manitoba and Saskatchewan regularly vote NDP provincially. Prairie voters aren’t against center left and even left of centre policies, they don’t like the Liberal brand right now because for the time being it’s seems as “not from here” and nothing’s going to change their minds until and entire generation of older folks (people around during the Trudeau era) dies off. A leader from Western Canada would help. I think Ralph Goodale or Lloyd Axworthy would have a shot. Gerard Kennedy has Prairie roots and he’s plain spoken. Likely need someone new to come along. A new generation candidate who mitt even come out and apologize for the finger and disown that in incident. I used to cheer for Montreal in the 1970s. My dad and Uncles said I should cheer for a Canadian team. To this day they hate Quebec. They WANT Quebec to separate. That’s the reality. PS I’m actually campaigning for a Liberal Candidate in a Close Winnipeg riding but will Vote NDP in my riding because it’s Currently NDP but the cons came in 2nd last election and they are more competitive in the sign war than I’ve ever seen them.

          • reformatory says:

            good to hear and apologies for mis-understanding what you meant
            Thanks for the update

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