Conservatives, NDP, Liberals unanimously tell Ukraine what to do

268 posts / 0 new
Last post
swallow

I think it's fairly obvious that all parties are more interested in Ukriainian-Canadian votes than anything else, and the NDP is almost certainly more concerned in the most recent instance given with showing up the Conservatives' contradictions. 

Slumberjack

Unionist wrote:
I think we'll have to agree to disagree, because your inclinations have been made very clear over a matter of months.

Oh, I think it goes much further back than a couple of months.

Slumberjack

swallow wrote:
I think it's fairly obvious that all parties are more interested in Ukriainian-Canadian votes than anything else, and the NDP is almost certainly more concerned in the most recent instance given with showing up the Conservatives' contradictions.

Yes, oddly enough, or perhaps it is not so odd anymore, that a governmet in waiting seems intent on doubling down on whatever schemes Harper involves us with.  Presumably this would mean in Iraq as well, because as a government the NDP would have all of the missing answers to slake its curiousity about mission, roles and end games.  I think its a pitiful state of affairs to consider the choices that are given to Canadians.

swallow

Pitiful indeed. I'm not sure we can make that presumoption on Iraq, however - the NDP may well oppose it, because the NDP is on rare occasions forced to listen to some of its supporters in social movements, I think. 

6079_Smith_W

swallow wrote:

 NDP is on rare occasions forced to listen to some of its supporters in social movements, I think. 

Yes, but if you are going to open that door, how is that not just doing it for the votes?

(that is to say, unless we're talking about somethihg prety obvious, this is really just speculation, especially if we see it differently when it is an action we support)

Unionist

6079_Smith_W wrote:

swallow wrote:

 NDP is on rare occasions forced to listen to some of its supporters in social movements, I think. 

Yes, but if you are going to open that door, how is that not just doing it for the votes?

 

Doing the right thing, just for the votes, would fulfill my most ambitious hopes for any political party on the scene today. That's why we need to mobilize so seriously on issues like Iraq (and might as well add Syria soon). If we rely on their sense of morality or justice, we'll be sorely disappointed. Votes is what they understand.

And that's why, on Ukraine, the same hankering for votes has led the NDP into screaming fits of "Punish Putin!" and "Sanction the Scum!" and "Freeze their Asses!" (deliberate typo). We just need to "scream" louder.

Slumberjack

Undoing the right thing after votes have been cast is always a possibility.

6079_Smith_W

Sure.

Again, aside from the fact that it is sheer speculation, taking the position that parties only do it for the votes rather than at least some sense of conviction  isn't all that different than the anti-rational assumptions about those who hold different attitudes here.

And if it really comes down to who shouts loudest and has the biggest block of voters, rather than some sense of what might be the best course, what is the point?

I know parties are machines too, and I agree it is far more important to get the right outcome than to have them be perfect in all things. But I find the assumption that it is all for votes to be not only far fetched, but also promoting an approach to political decision-making that probably won't work out so well for progressive causes in the end.

I can think of a few cases where parties and political leaders  took steps which didn't seem all that popular at all, but turned out to be the right move. More to the point, I don't see that is what is happening here, even on some steps which I do not support.

But I have said my piece on it; debate will only go so far if we disagree.

/drift

 

 

Unionist

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Again, aside from the fact that it is sheer speculation, taking the position that parties only do it for the votes rather than at least some sense of conviction  isn't all that different than the anti-rational assumptions about those who hold different attitudes here.

Let me be clear. I don't give a shit if Harper, Trudeau, or Mulcair do the right thing for votes, or out of "conviction". All I care is that they should do the right thing, even if they have to hold their nose till it hurts and bite their tongue till it bleeds.

As for Paul Dewar and Hélène Laverdière, they have regularly egged on Harper to go further and faster in punishing Russia, punishing Syria, etc. Never once have they suggested travel bans, sanctions, or asset freezes directed against Benjamin Netanyahu (that's a random example) - someone who actually, really, truly, scoffs at U.N. resolutions, invades neighbouring countries (proudly), and murders civilians. If you tell me Dewar and Laverdière are acting this way out of "conviction", I will: 1) Not believe you. 2) Not care even if you're right. Because either way, we won't change their "convictions" in time to save lives and peace.

The only "convictions" that really matter to Dewar and his ilk are the ones he will hopefully reap in some future war crimes tribunal.

 

Slumberjack

6079_Smith_W wrote:
  Sure.  Again, aside from the fact that it is sheer speculation, taking the position that parties only do it for the votes rather than at least some sense of conviction  isn't all that different than the anti-rational assumptions about those who hold different attitudes here.

These are two completely unrelated quantities.  One has past precedence upon which an attempt to demonstrate the rationality of an assumption might be built, while assumptions of the latter kind are based around political board conversations with no actual effect in reality.  One assumption speaks to a lack of conviction, while the other at least demonstrates a certain measure of it, one way or another.

6079_Smith_W

Yes we disagree.

I still think I'll plan to assess who I vote for based on something other than how easily they will bend to a dollar or a vote.

And that we won't change things in time to save lives and peace? There is a peace agreement, no? Even though it is tenuous, and even though Russia is balking at some of the terms agreed upon, and even though they insist it is not permanent.

But both sides are moving heavy artillery back from the front. How did that happen? Evidently Russia had nothing to do with it since they aren't involved, so what then?

Perhaps those sanctions had something to do with bringing parties to the table; perhaps not. One thing I am sure of, it is a better step than the all-out military one which Ukraine was asking for, but which has been turned down, even by the Americans.

(edit)

@ SJ

Gven that both entail invalidating others' opinions by saying they don't think for themselves, my point stands.

Slumberjack

6079_Smith_W wrote:
  I still think I'll plan to assess who I vote for based on something other than how easily they will bend to a dollar or a vote.

Best of luck with that.

Quote:
Perhaps those sanctions had something to do with bringing parties to the table; perhaps not. One thing I am sure of, it is a better step than the all-out military one which Ukraine was asking for, but which has been turned down, even by the Americans.

Probably because the West has a track record of only pursuing their so called 'exit strategies' to their full conclusion when dealing with nations who are unable to defend themselves against an onslaught.  Its why the North Korean government is still in power, and why the provisions of the NPT are selectively enforced.

Slumberjack

6079_Smith_W wrote:
Gven that both entail invalidating others' opinions by saying they don't think for themselves, my point stands.

It's a suspicion that shouldn't be discounted out of hand when certain thoughts mirror the news as closely as we've been encountering. 

Sorry, but what was your point again?

6079_Smith_W

Haven't we thwapped that birdie over the net enough? Saying one "mirrors the news" is just as anti-rational as saying one is just going for votes, since it doesn't engage the issues either. It is not an argument.

And regarding your response at 262, I don't follow. Canada applying sanctions is a bad option because if they were dealing with a weaker opponent the Americans would have gone military and squashed them like a bug?

 

Slumberjack

Yes, you're probably right.  I can only process a finite number of absurdities in one sitting anyway.

Quote:
taking the position that parties only do it for the votes rather than at least some sense of conviction  isn't all that different than the anti-rational assumptions about those who hold different attitudes here.

Quote:
 Perhaps those sanctions had something to do with bringing parties to the table; perhaps not. One thing I am sure of, it is a better step than the all-out military one which Ukraine was asking for, but which has been turned down, even by the Americans.

Quote:
Probably because the West has a track record of only pursuing their so called 'exit strategies' to their full conclusion when dealing with nations who are unable to defend themselves against an onslaught.  Its why the North Korean government is still in power, and why the provisions of the NPT are selectively enforced.

Quote:
And regarding your response at 262, I don't follow. Canada applying sanctions is a bad option because if they were dealing with a weaker opponent the Americans would have gone military and squashed them like a bug?

Where I re-joined the conversation, there was some talk about politicians doing things based upon their better convictions, as opposed to political fortunes and targeting for votes.  You offer in so many words, that yes, politicans do act upon their convictions, instead of the way cynicism might tell it, and to support your argument, you provide the case of the sanctions regime against Russia, supported by all parties, and that these decisions, along with the decisions of other allies, resulted in a better outcome with a peace deal instead of deepening the war.  And voila...politicians, the convictions of their social conscience, and better outcomes are all blended in like a potpourri.  And what a pugnent aroma it is.

For obvious reasons, an all out military option is clearly out of the question, or off of that infamous table they're normally so fond of throwing things on.  So yes, put that way I suppose you might say the better step is taken when they see their own potential annihilation in it, or when its bad for business overall.  But what convictions are we really talking about there?  Not that it isn't better that people don't die for the sake of connections and commercial interests, but considering what is going on in Syria, and in Iraq lo these many years, we need to see a little consistency if we're to consider where you've taken us with your argument, that the Ukrainian deal was pulled from out of the goodness of political, if not stout hearts.

The premise of the first quote above has a lot of problems.  First off, it seems to suggest that our political history is replete with lies.  They're here for us after all.  It's anti-rational to even think that they're not.  And on top of that, this is a form of irrationality that is no different than saying someone subscribes to a particular geopolitical narrative, perhaps by making use of the odd ancilliary description here or there, based on the sources they happen to place more emphasis on to support their arguments.  They're obviously the same.....two sides of the same coin.  Then it gets worse from there.

6079_Smith_W

No SJ.

Saying one is only doing something to get votes is pretty specific. And it's not a value judgment on any political stand. I don't think Stephen Harper's took his position on international abortion funding just to get votes, but rather because he honestly believes in it (in fact he has avoided opening it on the domestic front to avoid losing votes, I would say).

No, it has nothing to do with selling into some imaginary idea that politicians always have our best interest at heart, or don't lie. But it is, quite simply, a convenient way of side-stepping the rationale there is for applying sanctions. And agree or not, there is a rationale behind it. And yes, it is better than a military option, and better than doing nothing,  in my opinion.

 

 

Unionist

Now that escalation is on the agenda, I suggest we revive this conversation and continue in this new thread:

[url=http://rabble.ca/babble/canadian-politics/oppose-canadian-military-missi... Canadian military mission in Ukraine![/url]

Thanks.

 

Pages