09.22.2015 07:54 AM

KCCCC Day 51: is Justin Trudeau turning the Liberal Party into the NDP?

 

  • Based on the evidence, the answer just might be yes.  And it’s been going on for a while, too.
  • Go back almost a year ago, when the Liberal leader angered many (me included) with his adamant refusal to combat ISIS.  It was opposed by the likes of Lloyd Axworthy, Bob Rae and Gen. Romeo Dallaire – and, in the view of lesser Grit mortals like me, it was reckless.  ISIS was the most significant genocidal threat the planet had seen in a long time – and, per the axiom, silence/indifference was complicity.  But Trudeau had staked out a position that was clearly designed to attract New Democrat wafflers. Even when he started to fall from his first-place perch in the polls, Trudeau stuck to his (non-lethal) guns on ISIS.
  • It might have worked, too, but for C-51.  Anything that Trudeau achieved with his ISIS stance was lost with his approve-of-C51-before-even-reading-it position.  Many in the Liberal Party (but not me) were angry that he had decided to criminalize the promotion of terror, just as his father had rightly criminalized the promotion of hatred and genocide. As the year began, Liberals felt dizzy: Trudeau had jerked them to the Left (with his ISIS position) and then to the Right (with his C-51 position). It was policy whiplash.
  • Since then, since C-51, Trudeau hasn’t changed course. He’s gripped the steering wheel, and aimed the Liberal ship to the Left – and he hasn’t wavered.  He sought to place himself to the Left of Thomas Mulcair – and, as of this week, I think he’s done it.
  • Take a look at the evidence.  He’s the guy who favours big deficits, not Mulcair.  He’s the guy who wants to balloon infrastructure spending. He’s the guy who wants to accept a historic number of Syrian refugees.  He’s the guy who daily rails against millionaires, not Mulcair.  He’s the guy who actually says that the democratic socialists favour “austerity,” and he doesn’t.  He’s the guy who, this week, announced that he would scrap the purchase of F-35 fighter jets, not Mulcair.  And on and on.
  • There can’t be any debate that Trudeau now leads the New New Democrats.  What’s unclear is his motive. One, it could be that he has calculated that there are more gettable New Democrat voters than so-called Blue Grits, and he’s sacrificed the support of the latter for the former.  Two, it could be that he’s positioning himself for a Peterson-style minority government, with NDP support (and maybe even participation) assured.  Three, it could be that he really and truly believes it is the right thing to do, his upbringing notwithstanding.
  • Can it work? Well, look what I found doing a Google search for you this morning.  It worked before for another Trudeau.  Maybe it will again for this one.  From the Lewiston Daily Sun, February 19, 1980:

Screen Shot 2015-09-22 at 8.16.14 AM

95 Comments

  1. Alex says:

    The irony of this situation has not escaped me. I have a suspicion that the Liberals may win a minority, in large part because they have gone left. I think the game plan of Butts et. al is to win in Ontario by capturing the Wynne coalition, which won the last provincial election by being on the left of Andrea Horwath, and then gaining enough seats in the rest of the country to get a minority.

    Paul Wells, meanwhile, mused yesterday on CTV that the Liberals could be planning on announcing a major new revenue stream in the coming weeks as a possible game changer. One could be a carbon tax, while the second could be a tax on legalised marijuana. At this point that is mere speculation, but given were Trudeau is moving the Grits, Wells musings are not completely crazy.

    • Matt says:

      The whole legalizing and taxing weed to keep it out of the hands of kids argument is so stupid.

      It doesn’t work with tobacco, it won’t work with marijuana.

      And a carbon tax is a given. It IS all about revenue. Carbon pricing has never and will never be about the environment. It’s all abot filling the government coffers.

      • doconnor says:

        Keeping it illegal doesn’t work either. High taxes have reduced the the smoking rate over the years.

        • Matt says:

          Fair enough, but have the stones to say it’s about tax revenue, not the other crap.

          Just this week the OPP and RCMP teamed with crimestoppers to try and get people to call in with information about illegal tobacco sellers. It’s still a billion industry despite tobacco being legal

      • Al in Cranbrook says:

        Absolutely right on the carbon tax!

        We’ve had one here in BC on fossil fuels for some years now. Rhetoric from the usual suspects call it “a success”, but not once have I heard or read why or how it somehow is “a success”.

        I can, however, guarantee this: The climate, both here in BC, and globally, has not changed one millionth of an iota because of it.

        Oh, but they’ll say, “Well, it’s silly to expect little ol’ BC’s efforts to make any difference.”

        And you would respond, “But Canada’s will?”

        To which they will answer, “Well, no…but it’s the right thing to do!”

        Lord, give me strength.

        • cassandra says:

          when these conversations about carbon tax happen are they with real people?
          or pretend conversations you think would happen with ecofriendlies:D

        • Joe says:

          Ask yourself this simple question: when the price of gasoline was $1.20 a litre did you drive less than you do now now that the price of gasoline is $0.90 a litre. The answer in my case is- no.

      • Jason Smith says:

        Except it DOES work for Tobacco.

        11% (cut in half in 12 years) of youth were current smokers in 2013. This was the lowest rate for this age group since Health Canada first reported on smoking prevalence.

        In 2012-2013, only 4% of students in grades 6 to 12 (approximately 114,000 students) were current cigarette smokers: 2% daily smokers and 2% occasional smokers. The current smoking prevalence (4%) among students in grades 6 to 12 decreased compared to 2010-2011 (6%).

        Meanwhile…Health Canada reports for Marijuana use…

        “Consistent with previous cycles, questions on drug use were only asked of students in grades 7 to 12. Results show that marijuana was the substance with the highest prevalence after alcohol. In 2012-2013, one in five students (19%, approximately 413,000 youth) reported using marijuana in the year preceding the survey, not different from the 2010-2011 results but lower than the 27%, or approximately 637,000 youth, recorded in 2008-2009.”

        • soozbc says:

          But is the cost of cigarettes the driving factor in reducing smoking in teenagers or is it really just the ‘ick’ factor? As it is generally perceived as being gross.

          And is the increase in marijuana use tied to ‘low cost’ or is it really the ‘cool’ factor. Think about it. Today’s society looks down on cigarette smoking as bad for your health and those around you, while marijuana is being promoted as “cool” and even “medicinal”.

    • Christian says:

      Agree. Trudeau seems to be following the Wynne playbook who campaigned on the Left but as soon as she won started taking implementing policies from the Right – i.e.: privatizing Hydro. The Liberals are well known for this bait and switch tactic (they did it all through the ’90s) and I don’t trust them. Nor am I convinced by Trudeau’s sudden conversion to the Left (particularly given he’s surrounded by Wynne’s people). My vote stays with the NDP.

  2. Lance says:

    So how does Mulcair respond to this storming of the left-wing castle wall, lurch his party to the right? Is that what has been happening?

    Even if Trudeau loses this election and gets one more kick at the can (I don’t care what people say, you know that he will get that ) it is obvious that he is positioning the Liberals to put themselves on a more even ideological footing with the NDP. To heck with a coalition; I think Trudeau has a bigger prize in mind – a merger.

    Hmmmm, maybe he he CAN see that far down the field after all. Or at least some of the back-room people can.

  3. SD says:

    I don’t trust Justin Trudeau. He may be campaigning to the left of the NDP. However, if he were to become the next prime minister, I think he would move the Liberals to the right.

  4. Scott says:

    These things all seem pretty Liberal to me. I would be more inclined to say Mulcair is taking the NDP in a rightward direction. Having said that, I would agree that vis a vis the Count, Trudeau has taken the party leftward.

  5. ralphonso says:

    The NDP needs to go from second to first in order to govern.

    The Liberals will never prop up an NDP minority. They’ve said as much. And they mean it. It is not in their best interests. Subordinating themselves to the NDP means the end of winning and power. And the Liberals are about winning and power. If the Liberals don’t win, then what is the point? That means the NDP has to win over soft conservative voters. Hence the centrist positioning.

    The Liberals need to go from third to second. So the pool of voters they need to win over is smaller than the NDP.

    The easiest small group of voters to shake are NDPers. NDPers are about policy and comparative positioning. They are always one policy plank away from throwing up their hands in disgust. They are fickle. For them voting is about showing who they are and why they are different.

    The brains behind Trudeau understand that he will never win over soft conservatives. Once the Liberals come in second, the NDP will either nuke their membership (by backing the Conservatives) or fall in line by backing him.

  6. Matt says:

    He’s got to worry more about losing centrist Liberals than “blue Liberals”.

    Sure he’ll take some NDP voters who are angry at Mulcair’s turn toward the centre, but not enough to form government.

    Just because the left turn worked for Wynne in Ontario, doesn’t mean it will for Trudeau nationally.

    • Alex says:

      The Liberals do not need to convince the whole country of their new love affair with socialism. If they win Ontario and run the table in Atlantic Canada, then they will likely form government. Don’t get me wrong, I think Trudeau is being pretty reckless, but if he can capture the Wynne Coalition in Ontario, then it doesn’t really matter if he also wins in B.C., the Prairies or Quebec. Gaining a smattering of seats in Vancouver, Calgary, Winnipeg and Montreal should be enough to ice the minority cake.

      • Matt says:

        Even if Trudeau matched Wynne seat for seat in Ontario, he’d “only” win 58 of Ontarios 121 seats. And that assumes a big breakthrough in the 905.
        Assumig he holds every Liberal seat they won in 2011 that would give them 81. He’d still need to pick up 33 elsewhere to get a razor thin minority of 114.

        • ralphonso says:

          Between other urban areas and the new seats added, that might just enough.

          • Matt says:

            Except most of the new seats have been added in fairly strong CPC areas, plus dozens and dozens of other ridings have had their boundries redrawn. That might put more seats in play positively or negatively for all parties

        • MississaugaPeter says:

          Wynne won 58 out of 107 seats, not 121.

          • Matt says:

            Yes I know. I was trying to simply compare possible results for Trudeau’s left turn with Wynne’s left turn as some posters are feeling it would have the same result for Trudeau.

        • Mike says:

          Matt, I agree winning Ontario is not enough. Unless he wins all or most of the seats a la JC. He does needsa good blcok of seats elsewhere to form government. But I will quibble with two of your points. Wynne’s 58 seats were out of a possible 107. So just using straight math it’s closer to 65 for JT. And those new seats that are in apparently strong CPC areas, all went Liberal provincially last year. That was actually how Wynne got her majority.

          Here is a question that no one, especially Liberals dare ask. Does JT want to win this election? I don’t think anyone fully appreciates the enormity of the task of going from 34 seats to governing. To eek out the slimmest of minorities would mean having over 100 new members in caucus. That’s over 100 people who don’t know where the washrooms are, let alone how governing works.

          If we could look into the heart of hearts of the Liberal powers that be I would say they are hoping to come second with a weak CPC minority. Get the new MPs a bit of experience and in 2 years defeat the CPC and their new leader.

  7. DougM says:

    Harper united the right, then moved it to the centre to get elected. Perhaps Trudeau is trying to do the same, though I don’t think he is that clever.

  8. Domenico says:

    I actually think Trudeau is being quite shrewd, intentionally or or not….He is staking out NDP territory before they do, and differentiating the Liberals from the other two parties nicely. And lets not forget the Liberals are the party that wants to legalize weed. Cancelling the F35 purchase is another clever electoral move. Once again he has Mulcair attempting the take the middle nuanced ground on the issue. Just where you don’t want to be.

  9. Mark says:

    I guess my only comment is that Trudeau has so picked up on the “we need change” position of most voting Canadians, that he is willing to do and say anything that will show Canadians that he will bring the most change. Even the Liberal election slogan is “real change”. Now, do I think Trudeau is that smart to actually have a well-conceived plan? Not so certain of that. However, as a long-time Blue Liberal myself, I now have several reasons to spoil my ballot next month OR hope for a good independent in my riding (not going to happen).

  10. tofkw says:

    Has Trudeau moved the Liberals to the left?
    No, the positions he’s taken are in traditional Liberal Party territory, at least they were prior to the 1990’s.

    The real question is how far to the right has the NDP now gone?

  11. MississaugaPeter says:

    1 year ago, Nanos had the following:

    43.0% Liberal
    19.5% NDP
    25.9% CONS

    3 months ago, Nanos had the following:

    30.8% Liberal
    31.1% NDP
    27.6% CONS

    Today, Nanos has the following:

    30.3% Liberal
    29.4% NDP
    31.3% CONS

    From a year ago to 3 months ago, Trudeau went from majority territory to who-knows territory. The CONS stayed the same in both. So Trudeau went and is going left. In the process, he is slowly hemorrhaging Blue Liberals, which have pushed the CONS over 30%.

    The problem is, that even though Harper has a millstone around his neck and surely should drown, Trudeau and Mulcair have erred. And all one has to look at is figure out when did their fortunes reverse course. With Trudeau it was C-51. It is his albatross on his back. He is desperately doing everything NDP to have the Left forget C-51 or to minimize it.

    The problem is, in the last week of the campaign, IMO, C-51 will be the issue. It is in the NDP’s best interests to make it an issue. If every person against C-51 voted NDP, they would have a majority. The NDP was No. 1 in B.C. when C-51 was paramount in people’s minds.

    The question is: Are the NDP smart enough to make C-51 an issue in the last week of the campaign? I am unsure. They have fumbled keeping buffoons on staff and as candidates, which most surely is making the rounds right now and will most surely come back in the last week of the campaign when all eyes will be on the election.

    • Vancouverois says:

      Just because C-51 was a number one issue several months ago does not mean it would still be the primary issue for voters if the NDP tried to revive it. And even if that did happen, the results might not play out the same way when it’s revisited.

    • Scott says:

      Why not start when the Libs were in the low 20’s and chart the steady rise in the polls? Also, Trudeau’s position re C51 that he will cover both security and privacy at the same time resonates with the electorate. Why not climb on board Peter instead instead of being a party pooper.

    • Domenico says:

      IPSOS Numbers from yesterday; Liberals (33%, +2) NDP (30%, -2), Conservatives (27%, -2)

      The methodology for all pollers appears to be telephone which makes me doubt the numbers. It seems all the parties are within the range of error and the methodology is suspect. My guess this would tend to over represent old voters (You old timers with land lines) but how that relates to party support I am unsure.

      • MoeL says:

        From Ipsos… “For this survey, a sample of 1103 Canadians eligible to vote was interviewed online via the Ipsos I-Say Panel (comprising ~150,000 panelists) and non-panel sources (river sampling).”
        From Nanos… “A national dual-frame (land+cell) random telephone survey is conducted nightly by Nanos Research throughout the campaign using live agents.”

    • Mike says:

      Mississauga Pete,

      Outside of the us keyboard warriors on this site and Twitter I have heard exactly ZERO people mention C-51. Zip, zero, zilch, nada.

      A few mention scandal, but not many. Most are concerned about the issues that hit them or their children in the pocket book. Lest conservatives get too smug and think this is Harper’s wheelhouse, people are uneasy and Harper was the one that got them to that point.

      • Al in Cranbrook says:

        C-51 is only an issue with the MSM and usual suspects. IMHO, the majority of Canadians see it the same way as, f’rinstance, Warren. It’s about giving both the RCMP and CSIS updated tools to deal with the 21st century challenges posed by the Internet…which Al Qaida and ISIS are exploiting for everything they can get out of it.

        And now it’s law. Done deal, water under the bridge. Watching what’s happening in Europe most likely only reinforces the need for it. And I’ve already seen pics on the net of ISIS flags being waved in the face of German police forces. And I’ve already seen one article in which Germany’s security agencies are warning that recruiting among refugees is a fact. That ISIS operatives have already infiltrated into the heart of Europe is, IMHO, a given.

        I’ll also say this: Something goes nuclear in Europe involving ISIS, all bets are off for both Trudeau and Mulcair. The situation over there is explosive, to put it politely. Deal with it, or not, that’s the reality of it.

    • Jack D says:

      I don’t think the C-51 matter is a big a lightning-rod issue as you think, champ.

      Hate to disappoint you, but beyond the realms of social media and comment sections such as this –there is very little play of C51 where it matters in Canada. It was a contentious issue at one point, admittedly, but if you’ve taken a look at recent polls then by all indications its the economy thats the numero uno issue for voters.

      If the NDP were to try and push the C51 matter in the fore of the last week of the election then they’ve pretty much signed off any hopes of getting elected on Oct 19th. The party already has the stigma of being a one-dimensional protest party with a lack of breadth when dealing with matters not entirely focused on social issues. So trying to wedge C51 as an issue would come off as ridiculously desperate and undermine their own efforts towards stepping out of the fringes of the political-spectrum.

    • MississaugaPeter says:

      C-51 is not forgotten and was the reason Trudeau lost his significant lead to the NDP.

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/trudeau-c51-bill-liberals-ndp/article25410893/

      Like the aforementioned, I flipped to the NDP. Now, disappointment with Mulcair has me waffling and is bringing back some of the NDP vote because I/we forgot about C-51.

      C-51 is a core issue for many. We already feel too many people have too much information about us, and we are frightened that C-51 will just be even more private information in the hands of the government.

      I was born in a police state, and am frightened that what my parents took me away from is now slowly becoming acceptable here. Other immigrants feel the same. Unfortunately, at this point, C-51 probably doesn’t even matter because between the NSA and Google, all Canadians are already living 1984.

      • Jack D says:

        I can totally empathize with your concern, and its understandable that you might be concerned. There are many who are made uncomfortable by C51 and its potential ramifications and if its any consolation, the Liberals have promised to make significant amendments to the bill. Personally, I have a hunch that if the Liberals do form government they will end up gutting the bill to the point where it doesn’t resemble anything like it does now. Its given the party such misery that I expect that the Liberals will waste no time in stripping it down to just the minimum.

        With that said, you are among a small but vocal group when it comes to C51 as a ballot-box issues. When it comes to the Oct 19, the majority of voters are much more concerned with the state and future of the economy. Pocket book issues will decide this contest and whoever has a coherent enough plan will succeed. The NDP can’t expect to win this election on C51 alone and they know that. But given how there’s a growing perception amongst a lot of undecided voters that Mulcair is waffling on important issues, I wouldn’t be surprised if the NDP actually tried a last-ditch-effort to attack the Liberals.

  12. Matt says:

    Part of an exchange with Trudeau and CTV Atlantic reporter Steve Murphy:

    Murphy – So how much new spending have you announced?

    Trudeau – Uhhh, a fair bit.” Then tries to steer the conversation in a different direction.

    Murphy returns to the topic – You either know and won’t say, or you don’t know.

    Trudeau – If you want to tabulate them you can go to our website and do that.

    Murphy – Your opponents claim it’s around $25 billion to $30 billion

    Trudeau – That is completely wrong

    Murphy – Well, what’s the number then?

    Trudeau – Doesn’t answer.

    Shouldn’t the guy making the spending promises know how much they total?

  13. Brachina says:

    Trudeau offers instant gratification, Mulcair offers building lasting institutions built over time.

    Mulcair is interested in good administeration, Trudeau in getting votes.

    If Trudeau’s plan to run deficits to boost spending are left wing, then given Harper already did this in 2008, then one must conclude that Harper is the most leftwing leader.

    This election and the coverage gets goofier and goofier.

    Mulcair wants to build a national childcare, national pharmacare, nation inforstructure plan, ect.. over time, instutitions your childern can rely upon, Trudeau wants to spend billions on unspecified programs going into debt, and then in 2019, hack and slash his way to a balanced budget. This is sort sighted, not leftwing.

    • Lance says:

      So Trudeau wants to spend on “unspecified programs”, but Mulcair wants national childcare and national pharmacare. Since Mulcair is more specific about what he wants to spend on, where is his costing? How does he propose that we pay for all of that and still stay out of deficit? Will he find a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow?

    • Jack D says:

      Actually, what Mulcair wants to do is make a sh*t load of promises that he has no intention of actually fulfilling. His mouth is writing cheques that his platform or costing just can’t cash. So in reality, he’ll say just about anything to get votes.

      Mulcair has had multiple personalities all across Canada, in two different languages, saying completely contradictory things. Enough with that “good public administration” sh*t. That cheap facade just isn’t working because everything Mulcair has stood for in his “35 years of experience” has been diametrically opposite to what he claims to be standing for now.

      It’s funny how you’re b*tching about the election coverage when Mulcair has barely been challenged on his asinine positions on things like the Senate, the Clarity Act and pipelines.

      • RogerX says:

        People prefer promises and reject reality…. the whole thing is a delusion. The day after the election everything will return to normal and people will get back to their daily delusions.

      • Jane says:

        I agree with you Jack D. know one has asked Mulcair questions about the Clarity Act the, Senate and the pipelines. I for one would like to hear what he has to say. I for one would like to hear Mulcair talk about Quebec’s part in Canada, as they do want to separate. Pipelines the NDP don’t like them, so he will stay away from talking about that subject

        • Jack D says:

          Personally, I find it unacceptable that the NDP should expect to be treated as an equal competitor in this race and a potential government while completely avoid any discussion at all on these issues.

          Mulcair has waffled pretty epically on topic like the Senate and the Quebec; mostly getting lost in his own cyclical rhetoric producing nothing more than emotional responses. But if the NDP is fundamentally opposed to pipelines then they should clarify this position. Silently gesturing positions to different audiences is incredibly disingenuous to voters.

  14. UFP Ambassador says:

    Trudeau hasn’t moved anything anywhere in any direction. He’s just a talking hairpiece for whatever powerbrokers are operating the meat puppet.

    • Domenico says:

      Come on we know there is only one hairpiece in this election. The same one that has a taxpayer-funded “personal grooming assistant.”

  15. Ty says:

    How is $10 billion a “big” defecit? The country ran $35 billion ones continuously for about 15 years when dollars were worth a lot more.

  16. walking_trees says:

    Dear Warren.

    Any thoughts on The Star’s series on the three women heading the parties’ campaigns? They profiled Katie Telford yesterday: http://www.thestar.com/news/federal-election/2015/09/22/the-architect-of-a-liberal-campaign-shakeup.html

  17. Maps Onburt says:

    Yeah because the guy who wears a $40K watch to Tim Horton’s is a man of the people…. I don’t think a lot of Canadians will be fooled by his sudden conversion. This is a guy who was born in a motorcade and has never had to work a day in his life. He’s an actor and is spouting what ever Butts is telling him to. When asked for details he can’t back them up. I can’t think of anything more dangerous than a puppet without obvious masters. I for one have had enough of Power Corp telling us what we need to do.

    • Jim Curran says:

      Right. And Steve Harper worked a lot? Please. Spare me.

      • Maps Onburt says:

        Yes, actually he did. He very well in high school (was on reach for the top) but dropped out of university when he realized it wasn’t for him at that stage. He then went to work in the mail room, then paid his way through his bachelor’s and then masters degrees in economics, ran and won as an MP. Went to work as the leader of the National Citizens Coalition and then took over the Canadian Alliance and immediately merged with the Progressive Conservatives to form the Conservative Party of Canada. He then went through two elections as opposition leader before becoming Prime Minister. It was no cake walk for him.

        Trudeau on the other hand dabbled as a snow board instructor and then became a drama teacher. He then got drafted as the Liberals next best option and immediately went on a speaking tour about his life experiences and thinking! It is here that Canadians learned what a deep thinker he really was. As much as I disagree with Mulclair, you can’t argue he worked his way up the hard way too.

    • BlueGritr says:

      The Left decried George W. for not having a brain; for carrying out orders from a power group. How is Justin any different? Explanation?

      • Jim Curran says:

        You mean like Harper taking orders from his oilpatch buddies? Harper hasnt answered a single question about the cost of any of his election promises. Oh. That’s right. Media aren’t allowed to ask him questions.

    • Ridiculosity says:

      I don’t give a rat’s ass what kind of watch Trudeau wears.

      As for being a man of the people?

      I think washing the feet of an elderly woman answers that question: http://bit.ly/1YAl1zJ

      • Maps Onburt says:

        If PM Harper did that, you folks would decry him for preparing them for his next meal! It’s easy to balance babies and do stuff like that when you have fawning media following you around. I’m surprised they haven’t nominated him for a Nobel Peace Prize yet.

  18. BlueGritr says:

    Agreed: “ISIS was the most significant genocidal threat the planet had seen in a long time”. And so what will it actually take for Justin Trudeau to reverse his position? How bad will it actually have to get?

    • Luke says:

      Indeed. This ISIL / Syria thing is one where none of the federal parties is particularly impressing me. Now, I am not exactly nuanced in foreign affairs, but what would appeal to me is the following position: active military participation towards terminating ISIL, application of diplomatic pressures to get the military powers in the region involved in the big way they ought to be (should not the ultra-wealthy and militarily capable Saudi Arabia be doing an awful lot?), administration of humanitarian aid and acceptance of a lot of a refugees.

      None of the parties seems to be advocating for a good balance of these various contributions. Instead, they seem to be picking one and sticking with it for some reason.

      • Don Wilson says:

        Luke, it is instructive here to track the history of cutbacks to Canada’s diplomatic corps over the past 15 years. Both Liberals and Conservatives have aggressively slashed our diplomatic capability to the point of irrelevance. Say what you want about expensive dinners for dignitaries and lavish embassies. Diplomacy is a helluva lot cheaper than sending C-130’s full of PPCLI and VanDoos around the world to put out fires; no body bags come home to Trenton.

    • Jason Smith says:

      There are 5 million Arab troops in the region. Why don’t THEY fight them?

      • RogerX says:

        The Syrian ‘refugees’ are the losers who are being driven out of Syria by Assad, and now the Russians will be helping him. Ironically, Obama backed the Syrian “freedom” fighters against Assad, and now that they are losing they are fleeing in a massive ‘invasion’ of Europe.

        Yes, they are refugees, but they are also invaders because if you look carefully at the fleeing masses you will notice that most are young men, a few women and a few families. This is the price that those who started the civil war in Syria many years ago are paying because they are losing. Assad and his Russian allies will drive out even more of these Syrian ISIS losers into Europe thus creating a crisis in Europe.

        If these Syrian refugee losers had won the civil war, it would be a different group of Syrian losers fleeing the massacre. The Bush Americans created this instability in the ME, and now they are cutting and running with Obama promising to take some Syrian refugees to be politically correct in the USA and dropping million dollar bombs on Toyotas. It’s a nasty world out there.

  19. Jack D says:

    I’m a little surprised that no one is really acknowledging the evaporation of the NDP’s “surging lead”. It wasn’t even a month ago that the NDP had called in the interior decorators and started measuring drapes for the PMO and now there is complete silence from the oh-so-noble ones. There was a point where every single Dipper was citing some poll or another indicating that they were in the midst of an ascension to power under the messiahship of Thomas Mulcair.

    • Scotian says:

      I’ve been a little surprised by that silence as well. I noted on another blog today that was talking about how this campaign feels like it is out of gas in general at the moment that so far the only winner I can see from this long campaign has been Trudeau and the Libs. I said that (there as well as here) in no small part because when this campaign started the NDP were clearly in 1st place and their main competition the Libs were well back many points behind in 3rd place and looking to be collapsing to hear Dipper and CPC voices at the time. Yet now we have a 1 percent point three way tie between the NDP, CPC, and Libs, and order of place depends on which poll and which day, but all are well within the margin of error. So to this point it seems the clear loser so far are Mulcair and the NDP, and the clear winner so far in terms of movement and growth has been Trudeau and the Libs, with the CPC and Harper fluctuating around their base depending on how bad the news cycle for them is running, but aside from that essentially in neutral momentum wise.

      So why is there no talk or commentary on what happened to the NDP? Why are we hearing little about the major gains the Trudeau Libs made so far in the campaign before reaching this three way tie? Good questions, wish I could answer them, but to date I see only one party getting any real positive effect in this election to this point, and only one real losing one again to this point, and that is the Libs and NDP respectively. The question is why? What are each leader and party doing that is causing this result given where they came into this campaign at? Personally, I’m thinking Mulcair went too centrist and close to Harper and Trudeau is tapping into the image of being the real change image and different approach to the decade of Harperism. I would suggest that what we have seen so far in the election may be showing Trudeau has the right strategy, and Mulcair the wrong one, but the election is still four weeks away and until the votes are cast that is speculative, not factual with all the according conditional qualifying nature that comes with it.

      • Jack D says:

        I could not agree more with everything you’ve said. I concur 100%

        The lack of commentary on the NDP sinking since the start of the campaign despite the navel-gazing at their surge is a little disappointing to me. More disappointing however, is utter silence on the return of the Liberals from third, after the disproportionate amount of obituaries and post-mortems that were being done of the Liberal party. Barely mentioned is that the NDP failed to capture their surge and consolidate the “change” vote or any mention at all of Justin Trudeau’s undeniably successful performances during the debates and his resilience on the campaign trail.

        I get that people may not want to come off as propping up the Liberals, by factually speaking, the trend has been absolutely noteworthy.

  20. ottlib says:

    No he is not turning the Liberals into the NDP, he is running an election campaign.

    We still do not know the ballot question but there is a strong possibility that it could be “Do I want another Conservative government?”.

    It is not without precedent.

    In 2006 Mr. Harper ran on not being the Liberals. I still remember his five priorities from that election. They included the Accountability Act and four other priorities that were so unambitious that the running joke was he could check all of them off of his list by the end of the first day of the new Parliament.

    In 2003 Dalton McGuinty ran a campaign on not being the Progressive Conservatives. I cannot remember any of the policy planks of the Liberals from that election but I have clear recollections of seeing TV advertizements where Mr. McGuinty ended them by calmly intoning “Choose change.”.

    In both of these cases they were successful. However, in both of these cases there really was only two choices for voters. Either the Liberals or the Conservatives/Progressive Conservatives.

    Mr. Trudeau is just trying to convince the electorate that he is the only real alternative to the Conservatives. A task made harder by the fact the NDP are in the mix this time. So, he is pursuing policies that are markedly different from his opponents.

    He may just be succeeding. I have seen two stories from two different news sources stating that, so far, he has been most successful in staking out the position of being the most “anti-Harper”. This on top of earlier assertions that his economic plan set the Liberals apart from his opponents.

    As well, it is not without precedent that the Liberal Party has campaigned on the left only to come back more to the right after winning an election. Mr. Chretien won three straight majority governments by doing just that.

    With the latest Ipsos poll further indicating that the desire for change is in the 70% range this election could come down to who the electorate believes will be in the best position to bring about that change. In that case pursuing an election campaign that clearly delineates your party from to the other two major parties could be a winning one.

  21. BillBC says:

    I just love this blog…keep it up guys…. Question: has anyone done a survey to see how many Canadians actually care about Bill C-51, or even know what it is? I’d guess very few outside the kind of people who post here. Has any pollster asked that question?

    • RogerX says:

      It’s just a popularity contest amongst the turbid masses who know squat about economics or governing the nation. They only vote on emotion, money and fear.

      Now we wait for the Cons to unload their massive load of scaremongering attack ads to herd the lemming voters in the ‘right’ direction. Good luck!

      Question is has cher Justin and fuzzy Mulcair already won over the Hate-Harper hearts and mindlets of confused Canadians? Really, I don’t care, now.

    • Scott says:

      Oh oh! You said blog.

  22. RogerX says:

    Just listened to Mulcair addressing the U of Ottawa Business School and he sounded confident and secure in his speech. It looks like the NDP strategists are now presenting Mulcair as the putative prime minister-in-waiting, and I must say he looks and sounds impressive, and getting quite folksy too.

    The Justin Liberals are scrambling on the Left making socialist populist promises while Mulcair is playing it safe staying in the centre and watching Justin desperately paddling political waters.

    They say the Liberals campaign on the Left and then govern on the Right. I wonder if the feminine vote will help prop up the Justin Liberals because that is his natural constituency and he is really pandering to women of all ages. Meanwhile Mulcair is counting on the union vote and Harper desperate to keep his 30% core constituency vote.

    It’s gonna be a destructive dogfight soon as political blood starts to flow copiously in the short strokes of the campaign.

    • Ridiculosity says:

      It’s the feminist vote, dude.

      Not the ‘feminine’ vote.

      Feminists advocate for the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.

      Think of your mom.

      Was she and/or is she less deserving of a voice/vote than your father?

  23. MississaugaPeter says:

    Yes, this website is great (NOT a blog, if you want to keep on posting replies).

    Of course, but even my 83 year-old father would google: “C-51 poll”, before asking, but you honestly may need the help, so just click::

    http://www.google.ca/search?q=c+51+poll&ie=UTF-8&oe=UTF-8&hl=en&client=safari#safe=active&hl=en&q=c-51+poll

    It seems more people than you think have an opinion on C-51.

  24. Windsurfer says:

    One more thing, since this has turned into such a blue forum recently, those silly, incessant, mindless, Zombie-like ads about Justin may now be working in his favour.

    Take that back to Blue Central please, and have them change it up a little.

  25. I agree with most of what you have written here but scrapping the F-35s are a good move. The plane was never designed to be a fighter and only because of short sighted arrogance of the Americans who thought that would rule the air for a generation was the F-22 cut. Now both the Russians and the Chinese have better fighters and the Chinese and Russians have developed radar that can detect a slow, poorly armed plane. As the Australian Air Force chief once said, “Can’t climb, can’t turn, can’t run”. One long serving US test pilot said that it is a fighter that would be clubbed by a baby seal in a fight. The RAND Corporation simulations show all of the F-35s being shot down over the Taiwan Straight in a fight with China. Most pilots say the new F-16s, F-15s, and F-18 Super Hornets are the best options as they can actually win an air to air battle with someone. As several US defense analysts are now saying, the F-35 is the worst fighter on the market. Plus, in only affording 65 of them, we aren’t even getting enough to control our own airspace.

    • Domenico says:

      Well summed up Jordan. And the cost per unit of the inferior F35 is more than other fighters on the market like the Gripen (68.9 million), Eurofighter (180 million) F-15k (100 million) Super Hornet (69 million).

  26. !o! says:

    Campaign from the left, rule from the right.

  27. ben burd says:

    Why the f**k would Mulcair say in this campaign that he would cancel the F35 he did that a couple of years ago already! Trudeau is still playing catch-up

  28. Fabian says:

    I thought Trudeau was just echoing Kathleen Wynne’s strategy. She proposed an Ontario Pension Plan, raised minimum wages etc and left Andrea Horwath looking like an unconvincing centrist. She won. It could be the NDP have found the Jean Chretien’s centrist policy prescription for the mid 90’s about 20 years too late. Now Mulcair is chasing the centre which Harper has spent the past decade discrediting. Labour in England has also abandoned Tony Blair’s centrist tack. Probably overdue. The right’s strident politics necessitates an strong response. That’s more easily done from the left.

  29. Bluegreenblogger says:

    Hmm. ‘Campaign from the Left, Govern from the Right….’ Where have I heard that paradigm before?

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