NDP Socialist Caucus Supports Niki Ashton as Next NDP Leader

128 posts / 0 new
Last post
Rabble_Incognito

Boom Boom wrote "I'm not an NDP historian, so others will have to correct me, but when has the NDP moving left ever resulted in forming government at the federal level?"

It hasn't. But show me one measurement of leftness and a significant inverse correlation with election success, in a depression economy, and I'll buy your argument. Until then, it is unbridled and unmeasured 'speculation' that 'leftness = political failure' for the NDP, especially when the economic hardships we're facing now are 'nothing like' the hardships folks are going to be facing 2-3 years from now after the Tories screw things up and the Euro debocle breaks workers even further.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Well, I'll give you top points for that argument, but I really want the NDP to replace these fascist bastards we have running the country, and it just seems to me - given that we have to co-exist with FPTP - that we can not be seen to be too extreme in our policies.

Life, the unive...

Rabble_Incognito wrote:

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Why does this warrant a seperate thread, with a moderator stamp of approval.  I thought the point was to reduce the level of threads.  Surely the Socialist Caucus is not so important it deserves something seperate.  I support having a lot less of these leadership threads, I'm sure I am not alone in thinking that.

How about a whole string of threads.

Ice cream lovers endorse Thomas Mulcair

People who like bikes endorse Brian Topp

If you like 8 year old cheddar you'll love Paul Dewar says cheese loving group

People who live alone with cats endorse Nathan Cullen

Peggy Nash wins the support of farmers who prefer green work pants over blue ones

Simply the best says Yogurt with Fruit Coaltion of Martin Singh

I understand you are trying to be amusing, but based on the zero laughter, and my own take on socialism, I see nothing amusing in what you're writing here, because unlike your examples, there is a clear rationale for having a socialist caucus to the NDP. I am pleased that I can read their views here at Babble.

I guess if you throw socialism in your name all kinds of people cut you all kinds of slack.  How is the view of the Socialist Caucus any more relevant to people's choices than bike likers?

I am a new NDP member, but a long time keen observer and participant in progressive politics and environmental issues.  So I have no long history of antagonism to the Socialist Caucus.  Everything I know about the Socialist Cacaus I have learned from babble, their website and facebook.  The NDPs socialist caucus is to socialism as bowling is to sports.  Its entertaining, and it might even be fun over a few beers, and you might work up a bit of a sweat over it, but it is hardly serious.  They have no real understanding of real issues as they effect real people.  I will give them credit where credit is due though - they seem to do a really good job on poverty issues. 

And how anyone can claim that Niki Ashton is somehow the most leftist candidate in the leadership race is fascinating.  How could you possibly tell given that their generalized postions are basically all arguments over how many angels are dancing on the head of a pin.  I guess saying 'new politics' over and over consitutes being leftist.  It's the all new Coke.

Lord Palmerston

Life, the universe, everything wrote:
I guess saying 'new politics' over and over consitutes being leftist.  It's the all new Coke.

Or maybe you listen to what she's actually saying.  Niki has toned down the "new politics" slogan significantly and is a solid left candidate.   

algomafalcon

Boom Boom wrote:

Rabble_Incognito wrote:

Sounds like 'bait and switch' to me, Boom Boom. I say we give voters a real alternative.

But alas, I'm not a politician.

The NDP gave the country a real alternative in 2015, and we ended up, thanks to FPTP, with a Harper majority. How's that working for you?

ETA: the sooner we get PR, the better. FPTP is the villain that's keeping the NDP down.

 

The only way we get PR is if we win majority under FPTP (providing excuse to stay course with FPTP), or the Liberals eventually get upset with being under-represented as a third or fourth party (likely some undetermined time in the future) - and they agree to support a switch to PR in a pre-election agreement with NDP (something similar to Cullen proposal).

I'm not sure we can or will get PR under any other conditions.

 

 

Unionist

Sean Cain wrote:

Union, the questions you asked were for "all SC members," as you specifically put it.  I can't speak on behalf of all SC supporters as individuals, just as I would never dare speak on behalf of all NDP members as individuals.  I can try to speak on behalf of the SC and what its proposes through the policies it passes at SC conferences (or online, since we can't all meet every week) through a democratic vote.  Certainly not all NDP members agree on all policies, why do you expect that to happen in the SC?

Well, let me be blunt. I have a serious problem with a recommendation being made in the name of the Socialist Caucus (or the USW or CAW etc.), when members of the Socialist Caucus itself (like you for instance) are not going to follow that recommendation. What in God's name does the endorsement mean, then? Shouldn't you announce the full results (numbers of voters in favour of each candidate) in order to be transparent, and allow others to gauge the level of support for each?

Quote:
Ironically, the decision to make our preferences known about the NDP Leadership race was itself agreed upon by a democratic vote at the SC Conference in Toronto in November 2011.  The SC agreed that we would publish a statement regarding the leadership candidate(s) we collectively support, after a debate and democratic vote.  I seriously don't know how much more "collaborative" you need the SC to be. 

You misunderstood my use of the word "collaborative". I have no clue about your internal processes. I meant "collaborative" within the NDP, and even within the half-wit self-destructive horse race to pick a Dear Leader. What possessed the SC to make its endorsement (let's say that's fine), but then feel the need to shit all over the other candidates - and to whitewash Ashton (through silence) on issues where you condemn others (like Libya, or BDS, or stimulus spending, or economic nationalism, or coalitions - did she seriously tell you she "excoriated" the 2008 coalition?)?

You see, if you were determined to endorse someone, you could have endorsed someone. But the statement you issued... Do SC members really agree with all that stuff? Condemning Peggy Nash because of the CAW's strategic voting resolution? And because of favouring government spending to help the auto industry? And accusing Topp and Nash of supporting the bailout of "banks" (huh??)? And repeating a tired lie that Mulcair considered joining the Conservatives? And saying that Ashton as leader would open the door to progressive change, but none of the others would? How do SC members feel about hyperbolic and self-destructive smear jobs like that... not only those who support other candidates (like you), but those who favour Niki?

If this thread gets closed soon, I'll repeat all this in a follow-up thread. Because I'd also like to know how the SC feels today about its demand, one year ago, that the NDP call for opening the Libyan border to allow militants and arms to come to the aid of the so-called "insurgents" - and (excuse me for generalizing) whether that really was the view of most members of the SC. I've been asking that question here since the very day and in the very thread where that stuff was posted by Barry Weisleder.

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

I guess if you throw socialism in your name all kinds of people cut you all kinds of slack.

Yeah, we can see from this thread how the SC got "all kinds of slack". [img]http://archive.rabble.ca/babble/rolleyes.gif[/img]

Fidel

M. Spector wrote:

Boom Boom wrote:

I'm not an NDP historian, so others will have to correct me, but when has the NDP moving left ever resulted in forming government at the federal level?

When has the NDP moving right [or remaining static] ever resulted in forming a government at the federal level?

 

Fact Check: The NDP, today, is the largest opposition party ever elected to oppose a phony majority government in Ottawa. And that's without accepting bags of cash from Bay Street at election time, like those other two very similar parties.

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Yes, and imagine what they can do when they start accepting those bags of cash from Bay Street!

Sean Cain

Unionist wrote:

Sean Cain wrote:

Union, the questions you asked were for "all SC members," as you specifically put it.  I can't speak on behalf of all SC supporters as individuals, just as I would never dare speak on behalf of all NDP members as individuals.  I can try to speak on behalf of the SC and what its proposes through the policies it passes at SC conferences (or online, since we can't all meet every week) through a democratic vote.  Certainly not all NDP members agree on all policies, why do you expect that to happen in the SC?

Well, let me be blunt. I have a serious problem with a recommendation being made in the name of the Socialist Caucus (or the USW or CAW etc.), when members of the Socialist Caucus itself (like you for instance) are not going to follow that recommendation. What in God's name does the endorsement mean, then? Shouldn't you announce the full results (numbers of voters in favour of each candidate) in order to be transparent, and allow others to gauge the level of support for each?

Quote:
Ironically, the decision to make our preferences known about the NDP Leadership race was itself agreed upon by a democratic vote at the SC Conference in Toronto in November 2011.  The SC agreed that we would publish a statement regarding the leadership candidate(s) we collectively support, after a debate and democratic vote.  I seriously don't know how much more "collaborative" you need the SC to be. 

You misunderstood my use of the word "collaborative". I have no clue about your internal processes. I meant "collaborative" within the NDP, and even within the half-wit self-destructive horse race to pick a Dear Leader. What possessed the SC to make its endorsement (let's say that's fine), but then feel the need to shit all over the other candidates - and to whitewash Ashton (through silence) on issues where you condemn others (like Libya, or BDS, or stimulus spending, or economic nationalism, or coalitions - did she seriously tell you she "excoriated" the 2008 coalition?)?

You see, if you were determined to endorse someone, you could have endorsed someone. But the statement you issued... Do SC members really agree with all that stuff? Condemning Peggy Nash because of the CAW's strategic voting resolution? And because of favouring government spending to help the auto industry? And accusing Topp and Nash of supporting the bailout of "banks" (huh??)? And repeating a tired lie that Mulcair considered joining the Conservatives? And saying that Ashton as leader would open the door to progressive change, but none of the others would? How do SC members feel about hyperbolic and self-destructive smear jobs like that... not only those who support other candidates (like you), but those who favour Niki?

If this thread gets closed soon, I'll repeat all this in a follow-up thread. Because I'd also like to know how the SC feels today about its demand, one year ago, that the NDP call for opening the Libyan border to allow militants and arms to come to the aid of the so-called "insurgents" - and (excuse me for generalizing) whether that really was the view of most members of the SC. I've been asking that question here since the very day and in the very thread where that stuff was posted by Barry Weisleder.

For the record, I have decided that I will be voting for Niki Ashton first and secondly for Peggy Nash, which is about the closest thing you can get to the SC actual endorsement.  And we didn't release all the votes or allow others to "gauge the level of support" simply because we didn't AGREE to do that when we passed a motion at our convention in November 2011.  I think this is about the THIRD time I've explained this, Unionist.

And for the SECOND time, we criticised the other candidates because we wanted to be clear about why we only put forth Niki Ashton as the sole candidate the SC has agreed on to be our number one choice. 

You do know, Unionist, there are a lot worse problems in the world that unions and caucuses making recommendations for NDP leader, right?  Just thought you'd want to know.

I wish I had as much spare time as you obviously do...

Life, the unive...

M. Spector wrote:

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

I guess if you throw socialism in your name all kinds of people cut you all kinds of slack.

Yeah, we can see from this thread how the SC got "all kinds of slack". [img]http://archive.rabble.ca/babble/rolleyes.gif[/img]

It sure seems that a lot of folks think it must be peachy keen because it has socialism in the name.  Must be the new politics/Coke.

By the way I have ranked Ashton 2nd, behind Saganash who I intend to vote for regardless since he is on the ballot.  But pretending she is somehow far more left than anyone else is frankly idiotic. 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Fidel wrote:
Fact Check: The NDP, today, is the largest opposition party ever elected to oppose a phony majority government in Ottawa. And that's without accepting bags of cash from Bay Street at election time, like those other two very similar parties.

Yes - against a thoroughly discredited Liberal Party (think Sponsorship) and against a Conservative Party that now has a majority despite the In and Out scandal and having been found 'in contempt'.  Against these discredited lowlife scum, why didn't the  NDP  achieve  government?

(I know you'll say FPTP - just pre-empting you, good friend  Laughing  )

Rabble_Incognito

Life, the universe, everything wrote:
They have no real understanding of real issues as they effect real people. I will give them credit where credit is due though - they seem to do a really good job on poverty issues.

See, I can't come to the same conclusion. I have insufficient information to determine that they have 'no real understanding'. Perhaps since you've strolled in that direction, you can elaborate and inform us as to the ways in which they, as a collective, aren't hitting the mark, or what needs tightening up.

The Socialist Caucus gave a pithy post about the candidate: She identifies with the working class, excoriates any electoral pact with big business (a personal favourite of mine!), denounces the imperialist war drive, (a needless expense in my view), she does not advocate public ownership (boooo), she praised the successful effort of the Socialist Caucus at the NDP federal convention in Vancouver (so she paid homage) and believes no public funding for any religious schools as a model for Canada (Hallelujah!).

I submit that a misunderstanding or miscommunication exists between the socialist wing and you. It is possible they're all out to lunch, as you suggest. But it's a slim chance, given that what I read appeared to present their values satisfactorily. I can weigh out which values we share.

I don't know all of their ideas, but what I read here was 'one possible point of view' among many that I'm going to weigh out as I make my decision. The fact that the POV was collective, by folks who 'consider themselves' socialist, just made it that much more 'palatable'. It also gave me new ways to think about candidates in the future, so their contribution has heuristic value, for me.

Rabble_Incognito

If someone doesn't spell out FPTP for readers I'm gonna have a connipshun. Yell Or is this some kind of IQ test?

Unionist

There's always the option of reading the thread topic and asking how the hell a discussion on FPTP is relevant here.

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Unionist wrote:

ETA: [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/introductions/vote-ndp-may-2-no-coalition-libera... is Weisleder's post[/url] from last April, which I note was made on behalf of the Socialist Caucus. I'd like an explanation, please.

That post was not "made on behalf of the Socialist Caucus". It quotes a resolution passed by the SC, but that doesn't make the whole post into the position of the SC.

Does everything you post here represent the position of your union?

And why the stalking-vendetta against Weisleder for saying something about Libya you disagree with? A lot of things were said about Libya by a lot of people early last year that turned out to be ill-advised in light of later information. But I suppose you had perfect knowledge of the situation from day one?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Well, without FPTP,  Niki Ashton should have no difficulty becoming the next PM in 2015 if she wins the leadership. Wink

Unionist

I challenged it on day one, Spector. Check the original thread. I didn't wait for the benefit of hindsight, did I? I asked for an explanation on day one. I'm still waiting. 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Rabble_Incognito wrote:

If someone doesn't spell out FPTP for readers I'm gonna have a connipshun. Yell Or is this some kind of IQ test?

 

I'll tell you what FPTP is, if you give me the secret handshake. Wink

Rabble_Incognito

This is gonna hurt, isn't it? I'm gonna have to rewrite everything I said because of four fking letters, right?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture
Unionist

M. Spector wrote:

That post was not "made on behalf of the Socialist Caucus". It quotes a resolution passed by the SC, but that doesn't make the whole post into the position of the SC.

No, but this part was adopted (allegedly) by the SC:

Quote:
Be It Further Resolved that the NDP actively encourage the opening of Libya's borders with
Tunisia and Egypt so that partisans of the Arab democratic revolt can come to the aid of the
Libyan insurgency, and that the NDP organize solidarity with the movement of the Libyan and
Arab peoples for democracy and self-determination.

That's the part that was most offensive - and which I challenged on April 11, the day after Weisleder posted it.

Quote:
Does everything you post here represent the position of your union?

No, but if I post the text of an adopted resolution, you can expect that it does represent the position of the union.

Quote:
And why the stalking-vendetta against Weisleder for saying something about Libya you disagree with? A lot of things were said about Libya by a lot of people early last year that turned out to be ill-advised in light of later information. But I suppose you had perfect knowledge of the situation from day one?

I'm stalking him because he has never responded - neither have you, for that matter, except to chastise me for repeating my point. I consider his post, and that part of the SC resolution, to reflect the worst kind of pseudo-leftist neo-colonial attitude in dealing with the struggles of other peoples - not only picking sides in a civil war, but urging the NDP and Canada to intervene, only in a different fashion. That's heavy shit, and it either reflects the politics of Weisleder and the SC, or it doesn't. It remains of the highest importance, because if not explained or corrected or reaffirmed (if that's what they want), it will recur. But consistency and honesty and transparency are important.

Rabble_Incognito

Oh it's argot! Thanks!

Rabble_Incognito

Speaking of FPTP and SMP (see I'm catching on) isn't Harper going after 'reforming' the electoral areas?

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

@ Unionist

Babblers had a lot of disagreements ten months ago about Libya, and a lot more serious ones than that. Most of us have long since agreed to disagree. But your pathological animus against Weisleder on this point seems to be the only one that's dragged around like an albatross from thread to thread. It's most unseemly. And it belies your usual refrain on the importance of knowing who your allies are.   

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

What's unseemly is a thread over 125 posts. Closing for length (and peace of mind).

Oh, open another one if you must.

Polunatic2

A couple of observations and comments from the SC statement:

Quote:
SC... urges people to vote for Niki Ashton, with no recommendations for a second, third or further choice.... Ashton opens the door for progressive change.  The others do not.... But wouldn't it be a serious error for NDP socialists and progressives to ignore the current leadership race, solely to agitate for socialist policies and greater democracy in the party, and just hope for the best?
How is recommending the selection of just one candidate out of 7 (or 8) any different from the "serious error" the SC warns about? Sounds a bit sectarian to me. "Either Niki or nobody".Isn't support for Niki alone "hoping for the best"?
Quote:
In contrast to the other candidates, Niki campaigns for closer NDP identification with the working class. She excoriates any electoral pact with the parties of big business.
Emphasis mine. Is Ashton really opposed to post-election pacts? Not sure. Are the SC? Probably. Since the "other candidates" oppose Cullen's plan, the SC couldn't be referring to Cullen's pre-election plan as the "contrast". Therefore it must be with the willingness of the others to consider post-election strategies with the Libs and Greens.  Does Ashton really agree with the SC's "no compromise ever" position? At best, this is confusing. At worst, it's substiting the SC position against compromise for Ashton's opposition to a pre-election strategy.
Quote:
Nash... supplements that call with good arguments for Proportional Representation in Parliament.
Interesting comment. The SC doesn't comment about the fact that Ashton's website platform is silent about PR and that she dodged the question when asked if bringing Manitoba politics to Ottawa meant dropping PR. On their website, the SC itself doesn't do much more than pay lipservice to PR and offers no roadmap on how to get there. Neither does Ashton.
Quote:
By obscuring the class question, by obsessing on Harper, Cullen fosters "illusions in the system"... "the anti-capitalist path"... "nationalize the commanding heights of the economy under workers' and community control".
. And there we likely have the real playbook - entryism (joining a party in order to change it into something it isn't or ultimately something even more divisive - a recruitment tool for their own non-party party (Socialist Action). I doubt that all SC supporters agree with this assessment or would suggest that is their goal. But there is an over-reliance of undefined decades-old language to justify holding the NDP to their own standards. But are those, or have those ever really been the standards? Leopards don't easily change their spots.

Sure the SC have some good ideas. If they didn't, they wouldn't attract any supporters. And Ashton has thrown some of her own ideas into the race and shown some guts in talking about the Palestinians (although her campaign should learn to proofread - see headline).

Pages

Topic locked