09.01.2011 09:32 PM

Things are getting interesting

His quote about the Rapture is a classic. Worth a read!


  1. Attack! says:

    Pat Martin’s great at calling the Cons on all their BS & shenanigans, and a real straight-shooter.

    Why, if I were Lola Heatherton, “I[‘d] want to bear your children.”

  2. The Doctor says:

    “In the last NDP leadership race, 25 per cent of the votes were set aside for delegates from the labour movement.”

    This has always been at the heart of my problem with a merger — the fact that the NDP is beholden to organized labour (and IMO it shackles them in terms of policy). I’d be interested to know if WK would support or oppose a merged NDP-LPC having votes set aside for organized labour or for having an institutionalized influential role for organized labour in a merged party.

    • smelter rat says:

      Unlike the Reformacon Party, whose delegates are roughly 100% from the private sector.

      • Ted H says:

        So what if the NDP is supposedly beholden to Labour. I would say the Conservatives especially and even the Liberals to some extent are beholden to business and even anti-labour forces which rather than shackling their policy actually shapes it.

        Any politician or party is only the surface, it is who is behind them that is important and must be discerned by any serious voter. As Ralph Nader said, George Bush was just the human face of a conglomerate of corporate interests.

        All politicians Left and Right are the more or less human face of some kind of special interest group, a political party is a special interest group. People support political parties based on whether or not their own interests are being served.

        • The Doctor says:

          There’s a difference between what goes on in the LPC and the CPC on the one hand, and the situation in the NDP on the other. The NDP actually sets aside votes and/or delegates from organized labour on a structural, institutionalized basis. Nothing like that occurs in the LPC or CPC. If you guys can’t grasp that difference, then you’re really skating over something rather obvious. And significant.

          And smelter rat, the fact is you have no idea how many card-carrying members of the CPC might belong to unions. E.g., are you going to try to assert that there is not a single member of the CPC who is a government employee and/or a member of a union? Get serious.

          • Cam Prymak says:

            Personally I’ve not thought of the CPC in terms of unionized membership but you raise an interesting point. It might be they’ve been effectively silenced for so long between the corporate organizations and the very vocal reformers (you can add the emerging Tea Party elements, i.e. Landowners Association to that list), that they’re willing to consider an alternative.

            By virtue of prudent policies in the 90s (Chretien) and ironically based on our export driven economy, Canada has been more insulated against the economic downturn than the US. But the high growth economies of the likes of China, who’ve been buying our natural resource exports, are slowing and today’s economic report for jobs in the US is very bad, http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/02/us-usa-economy-idUSTRE77U25D20110902.

            We’ve got to move past what was the norm in our politics and address how we can leverage, not run from, economic globalization and advances in technology. The LPC needs to address what I see as an emerging squeeze on us in the Canadian middle class and do so before tea party rage binds voters and politicians into a constant state of gridlock where the only people that benefit are lobbyists.

    • Dan says:

      In the last Liberal leadership race, the leader was handpicked by Bay street hacks over the objections of anyone with a brain.

      This has always been at the heart of my problem with a merger. I’d be interested to know if the merged party will have to become a top-down party made of careerists who dole out political appointments and public-private partnerships to their corporate donors.

  3. frmr disgruntled Con, now Happy Liberal says:

    Ive gone down the merger route before…..once bitten, twice shy………..

  4. Pete says:

    what I see is that the dippers now see deer in the headlights w/o Layton’s bluster and realize thye are one term wonders. this leads them to want a horse to ride with in the next election.

    The Libs should, and earlier than later, consider the options in front of them and not totally dismiss a joint effort of some sort. Strategic voting, in targetted ridings, would be my preference

  5. Anne Peterson says:

    Better to be beholden to labour, which means working Canadians, than to corporations which are stripping the riches from the middle class and paying themselves millions.

  6. JStanton says:

    …even if the current NDP and LPC “merged”, disaffected or marginalized Dippers would maintain a “third” party, which would be, essentially, the NDP. So, what we are really talking about here is the merger of the two power bases, and that cannot happen soon enough.

    Progressive forces have in common the fundamental humanistic views that supersede petty partisanship. This could be a victory for all us, one that is ours to screw up, just like we have been doing continually since Mr. Harper emerged. Remember, Mr. Harper hasn’t won anything; progressives have continually defeated themselves by splitting their votes between dark chocolate, milk chocolate and white chocolate, and thus gotten brussels sprouts instead.

    • The Doctor says:

      So I’m curious — do you consider Paul Martin, Roy MacLaren, John Manley et al. to be “progressives”? And what about the Liberal Party under Chretien’s decision to implement NAFTA? Was that “progressive”?

      And I’d be interested to hear what you think this united party’s stance would be on NAFTA and trade liberalization in general.

      • JStanton says:

        This will be tough to grasp Doc, but bear with me. In the world of progressives, there is room for everyone. Many of us have differing views regarding the extent to which the State should influence the economy, but all of us agree that it needs to have a major role, in order to properly safe-guard the most important element -the health and welfare of citizens.

        This means that Liberal policy can reflect the actual needs and circumstances that are present, as opposed to Conservative policy, which reflects merely dogma. And then of course there is Stephan Harper policy, which reflects only his opinion du jour, ignoring, facts, science, and the expertise of professionals.

        As for trade liberalization, I would expect Progressives to weigh the net benefit to citizens, and act accordingly. To do anything else would be a betrayal of their responsibility, a sentiment that Mr. Harper demonstrably fails to share.


        • The Doctor says:

          This is the thing that kills me about the word “progressive” — in practice, it becomes this amorphous vessel.

          “In the world of progressives, there is room for everyone.” So is there room for Stephen Harper? For Charles McVety? For Vic Toewes?

          Fact is, you’ve given me no meaningful answer whatsoever on the trade liberalization issue. Fact is, the NDP have staunchly opposed every significant trade liberalization measure or policy ever proposed or adopted in this country. The NDP is a 100% protectionist party, utterly beholden to organized labour. The Liberal Party of Canada oversaw the implementation of NAFTA, which is the most significant free-trade treaty to which we are a party that currently exists. You’re attempting to skate over a chasm.

          How about the invasion of Afghanistan — Liberal Prime Minister Jean Chretien had us join the invasion. The NDP opposed it. So what do you think this merged NDP-Liberal party would have done in that situation?

          • JStanton says:

            … of course there is room for Stephen Harper – but he would have to punch in his own class though. Perhaps legislative assistant to, umm… deputy minister for amateur sport?

            As for the NDP record on trade issues – your analysis is simplistic. The NDP have opposed legislation that threatened the health and welfare of citizens. Insofar as the net benefit could clearly benefit citizens, you would no doubt see the NDP’s support. Regarding the alleged Liberal culpability, Mr. Mulroney’s government was the chief architect of that legislation, and, just as Mr. Harper has whenever tested, they caved to US pressure on every substantive issue, despite the dislocation it wrought on citizens.

            Regarding Afghanistan, again, your analysis is unsophisticated. Mr. Chretian lent Canada’s support to the pursuit of those responsible for an attack on our closest ally. He restrained us from attacking a third uninvolved party‚Ķ while Mr. Harper, evidently applying the same insight you demonstrate, insisted that we break international law, and attack innocent Iraqis.

            The significant point you evidently fail to grasp, is that a “merger” would not simply involve the alignment of present day party constitutions or mandates, but would instead result in a Realpolitik through negotiations between sophisticated progressive political actors, structured to benifit Canada and Canadians.


          • The Doctor says:

            Wow. Duck, bob, weave, dodge. Do anything but directly address the elephant in front of you.

            Name me a single significant trade liberalization measure that the federal NDP has ever supported. Fact is, you can’t. And that’s because they are utterly beholden to organized labour, and organized labour in North America has it as an article of faith that trade liberalization is bad, period. To cop a phrase from Lyndon Johnson, organized labour has the NDP’s pecker in their pocket.

            And then you try to pin NAFTA on Mulroney, rather than Jean Chretien, the guy who implemented it. Because he was, you know, Prime Minister at the time. What the hell ever happened to the buck stops here? That’s just pathetic. Are you saying Chretien, the guy who bravely stood up to the Yanks on the Iraq issue, was somehow bereft of free will when it came time to make the decision to implement NAFTA?

            On Afghanistan, you totally dodge the question by bringing up Iraq, which has absolutely nothing to do with the question I actually asked you, i.e., whether a merged party would have supported the invasion, as the Liberals did and the NDP did not.

  7. gretschfan says:

    The difficulty with a merged party now is that it requires the NDP to share the spoils of their victory in winning Official Opposition status. That’s a hard, hard thing to give up when you’ve convinced yourself you’ve earned it. To be clear, I still think a united left is the smart thing to do. And that missing this opportunity now will be the kind of thing that we’ll all look back on in 10 years and say “oh what could have been…”

  8. DL says:

    How can we talk about “united left” and Liberal in the same sentence when right now one of the highest profile federal Liberals is BC Premier Christy Clark – and who is she allied with? The Social Credit/BC Liberal party where she cooperates with rightwing fanatics from the federal Tory party just to keep the left (ie. the NDP out of power). If you don’t believe me – check out Stockwell Day’s impassioned plea for Conservatives to support Christy Clark and keep out the NDP! This speaks volumes about where Liberal loyalties ultimately lie.

    • The Doctor says:

      The connections between the BC Provincial Liberal Party and the Paul Martin Liberals go back a long way, to the 1990s, when a bunch of things happened all around the same time: the old BC Socreds imploded, the then BC Liberal Party unexpectedly became the official provincial opposition (and thus the perceived alternative to the BC NDP), and, very importantly, the federal Progressive Conservative party was decimated in 1993, which meant that a lot of Red Tories in BC were looking for a place to call home and to volunteer their time and efforts. Federal Red Tories and Martinite Liberals had no problem co-existing in the BC Provincial Liberal Party, because they shared one thing in common: antipathy to the BC NDP.

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