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Françoise Boivin succinctly expressed the NDP position, as per the Sherbrooke Declaration:
«Pour nous, 50 % plus un et le droit à l’autodétermination du Québec sont des principes sur lesquels on ne fera pas de concessions.»
Translation: "For us, 50%+1 and Québec's right to self-determination are principles on which we will make no concessions."
I see my duty as criticizing them when they stray, and praising them when they take the right stand - even if it's only in words for now. Doing so gives us at least a slim chance that when the time comes, they may do as they say.
I wish more volunteers and activists would take this approach. As much as I hate when people praise them for taking the wrong stand, I'm getting increasingly annoyed when people criticize them even when they try to say and do the right thing. The point is to get out of this idea of politics as "picking the right people", as if there's some mythical candidate who agrees with you on everything and will continue to agree with you on everything as long as they're active in public life.
Politicians want to win and want to look good. Even a politician with the highest integrity will try to at least throw a bone to someone they disagree with in order to make their overall point. And many more politicians will change their position with enough pressure.
The point is to get exactly where you are. Yeah, criticize them when they surrender or give-up. But if they say something right, make sure you shout it and echo it and proclaim how awesome they are for saying it. Not because you're worshipping them. But because that way everyone knows they said it, including them. And even the slightest deviation can be met with "yeah, but you still agree with what you said in 2006, right?" Your quote basically summarizes my entire theory of political change. Everything else is details.
This is my way of giving a sincere compliment, by the way. Sometimes that gets buried in my wordiness.