What are some leftwing policies the NDP can take up?

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Sokubo
What are some leftwing policies the NDP can take up?

Many argue that the NDP lost, for one of many reasons, because they lost their base due to moving to much to the center.

So I pose a question for other left of center posters - what ideas can the NDP start taking up that are leftwing? Pharmacare? Tuition Free College? That sort of thing. Discuss.

JKR

How about full well paid employment policy and a guaranteed basic income?

lagatta

Sokubo, why just college rather than university and college? I certainly agree with the need for post-secondary technical education (including upgrading for those of us with rather creaky computer skills) but both "academic" and technical programmes should be free of tuition. I would add that monetary and social support may be needed to ensure students from working-class and impoverished households can get more equal access to higher education, of any stream or type.

As for healthcare, also put some teeth in it...

JKR, how should we ensure "full well-paid employment"? One thing I'm leery of with promises of infrastructure programmes is that they tend to favour male workers who are more likely to be in skilled trades (yes, of course women should be encouraged to learn a skilled trade as well, but not all of us would still be able to make a transition; that will mostly involve younger women). These schemes usually involve little in the way of social and cultural infrastructure.

I will point out the need for social housing and the need for transition away from carcentric planning - although those would involve more in building and engineering trades that tend to be overwhelmingly male (perhaps less vehicle manufacture than building light rail).

josh

An inheritance tax. A true oppositional stance to the Israeli occupation.

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

Criticism and self-criticism. Because so far, the NDPers seem to be of the opinion that their failed campaign was none of their fault, that a little tinkering here and there, some "leftwing policies" and what have you, will remedy their electoral problems.

NDPP

Canada out of NATO. Canada out of Ukraine. Israel should be declared a terrorist organization and fund-raising for it made illegal.

Unionist

ikosmos wrote:

Criticism and self-criticism. Because so far, the NDPers seem to be of the opinion that their failed campaign was none of their fault, that a little tinkering here and there, some "leftwing policies" and what have you, will remedy their electoral problems.

Very good advice.

The opening poster seems unaware that NDP policies are set by elected delegates at convention - not by some two-bit dictators operating in a secret wannabe PMO environment. The role of the two-bit PMO dictators is to distort and discard the convention policies whenever they feel like it.

So to ikosmos's sage comments, I would add: Try out some inner-party rank-and-file democracy and transparency, eliminate secret decision-making at all levels. I know, sounds crazy, but when you ain't got nothing, you got nothing to lose.

 

josh

Promoting itself as the party of "fiscal responsibility?" It just completed a campaign where it did nothing but.

jas

Sokubo wrote:
Many argue that the NDP lost, for one of many reasons, because they lost their base due to moving to much to the center.

So I pose a question for other left of center posters - what ideas can the NDP start taking up that are leftwing? Pharmacare? Tuition Free College? That sort of thing. Discuss.

A worthy topic, but I would suggest that the NDP is not losing its base because it moved to the centre. It's moving to the centre because it's losing its base.

Union members do not necessarily vote with their unions, so while the NDP may receive endorsements from certain unions, it doesn't necessarily translate into votes. Also, I believe Unifor was unofficially supporting the Liberals in this election. Their official statement was that they supported a strategic vote to remove Harper. They did not officially endorse the NDP.

The partial erosion of this base is not a bad thing, imo. Unions should be able to put their support wherever they want, and certainly their members. The NDP shouldn't be pandering to those votes anyway, although an overlap of principles and interests is still there and is obvious.

But the national NDP should be courting other constituencies and be a broader voice for progressive Canada, which would likely still include progressive unions. But, imo, it needs to start aggressively incorporating green interests (which often run counter to union interests) as well start promoting itself as a party of fiscal responsibility (which will include -- nay, necessitate -- a number of radical progressive measures).

This would bring back the farmer cohort as well as centre-leaning unions, and may also start bringing in some urban Lib-greens. Unions that don't like it - well, where are they going to go anyway?

jas

josh wrote:

Promoting itself as the party of "fiscal responsibility?" It just completed a campaign where it did nothing but.

Yes, and they increased their traditional seat count (notwithstanding the 2011 anomaly, which was largely due to the collapse of the Liberals). It takes time for this message to get through. And it needs to be explained how it will be done. This is where the progressive measures come in.

scott16

Daycare should be kept but anything else would not be believable with Mulcair as leader.

 

BTW I have been a member of the NDP since 2006 so don't call me a liberal.

Unionist

jas wrote:

Yes, and they increased their traditional seat count (notwithstanding the 2011 anomaly, which was largely due to the collapse of the Liberals).

Surely you mean the collapse of the Bloc.

 

Unionist

jas wrote:

Also, I believe Unifor was unofficially supporting the Liberals in this election.

No they weren't.

Quote:
Their official statement was that they supported a strategic vote to remove Harper. They did not officially endorse the NDP.

They haven't "officially endorsed" the NDP for over a decade (talking about the CAW section anyway), and they officially disaffiliated from the NDP in 2006 after the Ontario NDP expelled Hargrove.

Anyway, I'm not sure why you're talking about the unions at all here. Sokubo never mentioned them - s/he was talking about the NDP's "base", whoever that might be.

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

I'd just like to remind people here that if you identify yourself as 'left' or as a 'progressive' you are by definition a liberal.

Not PLC or provincial Liberal party. This is why I had to remind someone about that when they enthusiastically posted an artcile celebrating the perceived end of liberalism in Canada. That was nothing to be celebrated.

Anyway,the NDP should prove themselves as left wing in the first place by embracing being progressive and social democracy (much more palpable now because of Bernie Sanders)

It's about identity more than policy. If they embraced themselves as leftist,their policies would conform toward that spectrum.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
much more palpable now because of Bernie Sanders

It's true.  I *can* feel it.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

Indeed. Make that PALATABLE .. In any case,Feel the Bern.

Unionist

alan smithee wrote:

Indeed. Make that PALATABLE .. In any case,Feel the Bern.

Very smooth! Thanks to the sanders.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Like a boss!

Pondering

There is no longer any point in aiming for Liberal lite. The decade of Liberal weakness is over. That boat has been missed and in my opinion just as well.

One lesson to take from Trudeau, is focusing on 2 or 3 issues. That is the attention span of the public. I thought people would get sick of his mantra on taxing millionaires to give tax breaks to the middle class, and not sending cheques to millionaires, but for people not paying close attention it's how he got through.

Aim policy at the 99%, not subsets of the 99%, at least until the next platform has to be released.

Go all out against the trade deals ASAP. Hone the message. Have the arguments to back it up, but put together some short and sweet phrases. Something about corporations suing us if we try to protect our environment or boost our local economy. Start yelling free trade is about eliminating tariffs not tying the hands of governments. Most people assume it's mainly about removing tarifs.

Use the example of the company that claimed to own water rights in the maritimes, I forget which, Abitibi maybe?

Own social licence on trade deals and the environment.

Leave everything else alone until the NDP is known for promoting fair trade not free trade. Start talking about all the tainted products that have come out of China. Talk about wage deflation. Start saying there is nothing wrong with protecting Canadian workers. That way when accusations of protectionism rear up, you can defend against it by saying damn right we want to protect Canadians from tainted goods and protect workers from unfair competition. Talk about food security and manufacturing capacity security as matters of national security.

Hook up with left-wing parties in Europe. Countries like Germany are against the investor state provisions and we are against them so why can't we negotiate that out of the agreement?

Argue that it is anti-democratic to negotiate massive trade deals in private then present them as all or nothing.

Close with, it is shameful that we are wearing clothing made by children working 12 hours a day and even risking their lives so we can have cheap t-shirts. Trade deals can include minimum working standards.

Trudeau promised debate on TPP so get ready. Clinton doesn't like it either. We should definitely not okay it before the US does.

Wait a little bit for new information to come out, then go whole hog against Energy East. There are only two provinces that really want it, Alberta and New Brunswick. I suppose also Manitoba and Saskatchewan but not many seats there.

Alberta is going to have to transition away from oil over the next 30 years. Create a plan to help them benefit as much as possible from what does get developed.

Do try for seats in Quebec, but don't consider it a beachhead. Don't discuss the Sherbrooke Declaration. If forced, say it is currently inactive policy, something that will be reviewed and if need be modernized if there are constitutional talks or another referendum however you fully support self-determination. If asked if it is still 50+1, say Quebecers need to be consulted on that. It's really not winning you anything in Quebec and it is offensive to many.

Basic income is good but start selling it as a means of saving money, like housing first. Really hammer home the idea that it saves money. Then add the cherries on the cake. Gives people dignity and most use it as a means of preparing for or getting work. Close with it is shameful to have people in Canada living in third world conditions and going to food banks, the equivalent of begging for food. That one measure would help everyone living in poverty regardless of the reason.

Medicare is being mismanaged. Look at best practices around the world and get a plan going. Argue that it is time for one medicare card to work 100% in every province. This too is a way of helping people living in poverty as illness is often concurrent.

All these things have a direct impact on the entire 99%. There is nothing radical in any of it. Make it the mandra of the NDP.

 

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

The campaign is over, genius. Now it's time for you guys to govern from the right.

Pondering

ikosmos wrote:

The campaign is over, genius. Now it's time for you guys to govern from the right.

I'm not actually part of the government. I'm just a voter.

Four people I know in Chateauguay voted Liberal even though I told them it was an NDP/Bloc fight. Looks like I was wrong because the Liberals won there too.

The NDP chose to play a safe frontrunner campaign presenting themselves as the New Democratic Liberal Party and lost.

http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/djclimenhaga/2015/10/when-ndp-abandoned-...

There's a well-worn saying in NDP circles that Liberals campaign like New Democrats and govern like Conservatives. This election showed what happens when you throw the NDP campaigning like Liberals into the mix. Young voters, who didn't have the benefit of remembering what a Liberal government acted like, flocked to the Liberals en masse. You can't really blame them.

For its part, the NDP has moved ever more toward the centre for years, to the point where, in this election, accusations that it was running to the right of the Liberals were not unfounded. That said, it would be entirely unfair to pin the NDP's defeat entirely on Tom Mulcair. Jack Layton also pushed the party to propose balanced budgets and Saskatchewan's Roy Romanow was the first premier to do so in the early 90s. Balancing budgets had become the end instead of the means to the end that they are supposed to be.

...

Last spring, EKOS pollster Frank Graves coined the term "promiscuous progressives" to describe people who wanted to get rid of Stephen Harper but weren't sure who should replace him. The campaign platforms presented to voters made that choice a lot clearer for many: Choose the one who promises to do it differently.

Along with the misguided attempt to reassure voters with the promise of balanced budgets, the NDP's vetting of candidates who expressed solidarity with Palestinians also hurt them far more than they will likely admit. It was with a not-insignificant measure of incredulity that I watched Mulcair hold a press conference condemning Harper's muzzling of scientists. I couldn't help but rub that up against what I and so many others had personally witnessed: the muzzling and removal of candidates who expressed even the mildest of criticism of Israel. In so many respects, the NDP itself made it easy for the Liberals to paint Mulcair as Harper Lite.

JKR

lagatta wrote:

JKR, how should we ensure "full well-paid employment"? One thing I'm leery of with promises of infrastructure programmes is that they tend to favour male workers who are more likely to be in skilled trades (yes, of course women should be encouraged to learn a skilled trade as well, but not all of us would still be able to make a transition; that will mostly involve younger women). These schemes usually involve little in the way of social and cultural infrastructure.

I will point out the need for social housing and the need for transition away from carcentric planning - although those would involve more in building and engineering trades that tend to be overwhelmingly male (perhaps less vehicle manufacture than building light rail).

Spending increases in areas like childcare, education, and health care would benefit female workers as these are occupations where females predominate. Increased public transit and increased social housing would probably provide more jobs to males than females but I think more females are public transit passengers than males and social housing would also benefit as many females as males as end users.

I think the NDP would do well if it promised to lower the unemployment rate to under 5% where the added employment would provide well paying jobs. It could also promise to increase well paid employment for groups such as the disabled, youth, the elderly, ethnic minorities, and First Nations.

jas

Pondering wrote:

There is no longer any point in aiming for Liberal lite. The decade of Liberal weakness is over. That boat has been missed and in my opinion just as well.

...

I like a lot of your suggestions, Pondering, but I would not characterize anything as an aim for 'Liberal lite'. I am advocating that since the Liberals have moved right of centre, the NDP take the centre left and keep it.

Geoff

I know this idea appears elsewhere on rabble, but I believe it needs to be reinforced as one of the defining issues for the left. With the rise in precarious work showing no sign of slowing down, the NDP must advocate for a guranteed annual income.

It's being done in other countries - Denmark comes to mind - so we know it can be done without bankrupting the country. We can therefore make a good business case, as well as an ethical case for a GAI, which, when combined with the rise in precarious work, could achieve another goal that has been promoted on the left - a shorter work week.

The result of a GAI would be to improve Canadians' health and reduce poverty. In addition, it would be a boost to the economy by increasing the spending power of more citizens. Thus, there are ways to "market" the idea to a wide range of interests in Canada. The NDP could then offer "real change" to Canadians. (I hope that term hasn't been copyrighted.)

Perhaps babblers have some thoughts about what a successful GAI regime would look like.

 

 

 

 

 

jas

Unionist wrote:

jas wrote:

Also, I believe Unifor was unofficially supporting the Liberals in this election.

No they weren't.

Pretty sure they were. But if you want to explain why they weren't, would appreciate.

Unionist wrote:
They haven't "officially endorsed" the NDP for over a decade (talking about the CAW section anyway), and they officially disaffiliated from the NDP in 2006 after the Ontario NDP expelled Hargrove.

Anyway, I'm not sure why you're talking about the unions at all here. Sokubo never mentioned them - s/he was talking about the NDP's "base", whoever that might be.

Yes, I believe this is the point of the thread. Traditionally was it not the unions backing the NDP? Is there still a strong relationship there? If not, why not? Would love to hear your perspective from the front line, Unionist. And whether the NDP needs to move back to that relationship or forge others, and how.

6079_Smith_W

I think more complaining is the key. I am sure the reason why Mulcair is not PM is because they did not complain enough.

Unionist

jas wrote:

Unionist wrote:

jas wrote:

Also, I believe Unifor was unofficially supporting the Liberals in this election.

No they weren't.

Pretty sure they were. But if you want to explain why they weren't, would appreciate.

It's hard to explain a negative. I'm not sure how you "unofficially" support someone. Unifor's line was to defeat Harper. They didn't officially support any party, nor have they for at least a decade, but I'm repeating myself. Here's the president of Unifor and the president of the CLC [url=https://twitter.com/jerrypdias/status/637697808838098944]canvassing (unsuccessfully) for Peggy Nash[/url]. I'm not saying you can't find anything like that photo with a Liberal candidate - but I've never seen one.

And this was [url=http://unifor.org/en/whats-new/press-room/unifor-celebrates-defeat-harpe...'s statement[/url] on the election results:

Quote:
Unifor is celebrating the defeat of the Harper Conservatives and calling on the Liberals and NDP to cooperate to rebuild Canada. [...]

A year ago, Unifor members democratically decided to make the defeat of the Harper Conservatives the union's priority in this election, pointing to the Harper Conservatives' failure to protect and create good jobs, failure to support investment and growth in our economy and failure to protect our healthcare system and unprecedented attack on workers' rights. [...]

The Liberals have promised to be a champion for the middle-class, to prioritize job creation, to improve the Employment Insurance plan and to protect the social programs that are the foundation of Canadian society. They have committed to improve the Canadian Pension Plan and protect our national healthcare system. "Unifor will ensure the Liberals are held to account for these commitments – which are crucial first steps to creating the change Canadians have indicated they want," said Dias.

Quote:
Traditionally was it not the unions backing the NDP? Is there still a strong relationship there? If not, why not? Would love to hear your perspective from the front line, Unionist. And whether the NDP needs to move back to that relationship or forge others, and how.

That's a very big question. Some unions support the NDP, some don't. In Québec, the main union federations have traditionally either: 1) been neutral (that used to be the CSN's position, still is for the most part); 2) supported the Bloc (occasionally the FTQ's position); 3) supported individual candidates based on their record on labour's priority issues. NEVER have they supported the NDP - until, ironically, 2015, when the FTQ adopted a strong "defeat Harper" position, and targeted some ridings where they tried to unseat the Conservatives - and even officially endorsed some NDP candidates as having the best chance. First time I've ever seen such a thing, ever.

But the history of the unions' ties with the CCF/NDP is too huge to deal with in a single answer.

Given the record of recent provincial NDP governments (refusing to do something so simple as enacting anti-scab legislation, or bigger things like reverse Conservative privatizations of public institutions, and generally acting like right-wing clones) - and the more recent federal NDP drive to represent the "middle class" (whoever the f*** that is) - I don't see unions and the NDP in general growing warmer and fuzzier to each other.

Personally, for what it's worth, I've always opposed affiliation of my union with any political party. In a union, we manage to unite workers of every conceivable political, ideological, communistic, fascistic, racist, progressive stripe, anyway, you get the picture. We definitely do and should pressure parties to adopt policies favourable not just to "labour", but to the vast majority of the people that are under the thumb of the super-wealthy. But we must never cede our ability to organize and engage in independent political action to any outsiders - not the bad ones, and not the good ones.

 

lagatta

Geoff, I agree about the importance of a guaranteed annual income, but it don't really have enough knowledge about how it should be crafted. No, I'm not afraid that it would keep "lazy people sitting on their bums" (I write, sitting on my bum), but that there should also be a facet encouraging continuing education (academic, trades and specific skills such as keeping our computer skills up to date) and helping certain groups such as Indigenous youth who often have a hard time accessing the labour market, at the same time as their communities lack such basics as drinkable water and school buildings. No, not "workfare", but recognizing that most people want to work, to contribute to their community.

One thing that is clear is that it must eliminate the hurdles and humiliation that are a feature not only of welfare programmes, but also of Workers' compensation. And the 100% clawbacks on every dollar earned by those receiving such payments.

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

A guaranteed minimum income would be a wonderful idea.

And I agree with Geoff. It would cut poverty and stimulate the economy.

These are the types of policies that would benefit the NDP and set them apart from the Liberals. Marketed properly,I believe it would be a popular policy.

Brachina

JKR wrote:
lagatta wrote:

JKR, how should we ensure "full well-paid employment"? One thing I'm leery of with promises of infrastructure programmes is that they tend to favour male workers who are more likely to be in skilled trades (yes, of course women should be encouraged to learn a skilled trade as well, but not all of us would still be able to make a transition; that will mostly involve younger women). These schemes usually involve little in the way of social and cultural infrastructure.

I will point out the need for social housing and the need for transition away from carcentric planning - although those would involve more in building and engineering trades that tend to be overwhelmingly male (perhaps less vehicle manufacture than building light rail).

Spending increases in areas like childcare, education, and health care would benefit female workers as these are occupations where females predominate. Increased public transit and increased social housing would probably provide more jobs to males than females but I think more females are public transit passengers than males and social housing would also benefit as many females as males as end users.

I think the NDP would do well if it promised to lower the unemployment rate to under 5% where the added employment would provide well paying jobs. It could also promise to increase well paid employment for groups such as the disabled, youth, the elderly, ethnic minorities, and First Nations.

 

 You make a good point.

 I remember when Mulcair was first elected as leader the ads the NDP put out where designed specificly to appeal to men and Mulcair polling numbers went up, especially amoung men because we were sending out the message men matter too, even if it was symbollically and not in so many words. And then that idea disappeared and so did that support and we ended up with a hugely gynocentric campaign and Trudeau still dominated amoung women, it was a huge missed opportunity be Mulcair could don't really well amoungst men, with his bear and manilness.

 Childcare, An Inquiry into missing and murdered women (even though rates are worse for men), money for more domestic violence shelters for women, not a dime for men even though there need is for greater because there are zero domestic violence shelters for men in Canada, ect...

There was literally nothing for men in the platform, its was all for women or ungendered things.

 And communication stradgy was no better, we could have at least had an ad were a single father picks his child up from daycare, and talked about its benifits to say hey, this isn't just for women, here's how it benifits you men, but it didn't.

 We have a generation of lost, frustrated men, boy who keep falling behind in school, who suffer more work place accidents and death, who face unfare laws, whose life expectancy is years lower then womens, whose dominate forms of cancer get less research and help money then breast cancer, who have no domestic violence shelters, who are incarnerate way too often, and who often feel used by society and abaddoned.

  The NDP offered them NOTHING, not even a symbollic acknowledgement that men have pressing issues too.

 Trudeau at least had his 10 billion dollar year plan that assuming his doesn't just pilfer from it to line his friends pockets which is possible, will create alot of construction and other jobs for men predominately, which was more then the chump change the NDP was offering.

Brachina

lagatta wrote:

Geoff, I agree about the importance of a guaranteed annual income, but it don't really have enough knowledge about how it should be crafted. No, I'm not afraid that it would keep "lazy people sitting on their bums" (I write, sitting on my bum), but that there should also be a facet encouraging continuing education (academic, trades and specific skills such as keeping our computer skills up to date) and helping certain groups such as Indigenous youth who often have a hard time accessing the labour market, at the same time as their communities lack such basics as drinkable water and school buildings. No, not "workfare", but recognizing that most people want to work, to contribute to their community.

One thing that is clear is that it must eliminate the hurdles and humiliation that are a feature not only of welfare programmes, but also of Workers' compensation. And the 100% clawbacks on every dollar earned by those receiving such payments.

 We already have a program for people who don't want to work, its call selling weed to thier friends, in all seriousness if someone doesn't want to work bad enough they're are ways to aviod it already.

 Thag income would actually increase the amount of people working because those on disability and welfare wouldn't be penalized for getting jobs, as they are now. It would also boost consumption in the lower classes which would create jobs. It would also keep people from being deseperate and forced to take jobs people don't want, so wages would rise for the poor, which would help the economy.

lagatta

Brachina, one has to have friends who consume weed to be able to make a living selling it to them. Most of my friends don't anymore. Moreover, isn't selling weed "work" of a sort?

I guess that income could be earned without any penalty, with the understanding that it would be taxed back at a certain point. There are also many people on welfare, disability and even Comp who can work to some extent, but not full-time and not at just any job.

quizzical

lagatta wrote:
...recognizing that most people want to work, to contribute to their community.

One thing that is clear is that it must eliminate the hurdles and humiliation that are a feature not only of welfare programmes, but also of Workers' compensation. And the 100% clawbacks on every dollar earned by those receiving such payments.

very much truth in the bolded section and overlooked by many.

A case could be made for a guaranteed annual income to be a part of a national safety net, for example;

- for those transitioning from seasonal work to EI, or if someone was suddenly disabled, or a family member was, it could be made to kick in immediately on termination of employment, it takes weeks or months to get claims started

- seniors would not have to be living on 800/month pension

- children in care would not be aged out of ministry oversight destined to live on the streets or commit suicide

- people who are unemployable would have income and dignity of life

 

wage zombie

alan smithee wrote:

I'd just like to remind people here that if you identify yourself as 'left' or as a 'progressive' you are by definition a liberal.

That doesn't sound right to me.

Geoff

quizzical wrote:

lagatta wrote:
...recognizing that most people want to work, to contribute to their community.

One thing that is clear is that it must eliminate the hurdles and humiliation that are a feature not only of welfare programmes, but also of Workers' compensation. And the 100% clawbacks on every dollar earned by those receiving such payments.

very much truth in the bolded section and overlooked by many.

A case could be made for a guaranteed annual income to be a part of a national safety net, for example;

- for those transitioning from seasonal work to EI, or if someone was suddenly disabled, or a family member was, it could be made to kick in immediately on termination of employment, it takes weeks or months to get claims started

- seniors would not have to be living on 800/month pension

- children in care would not be aged out of ministry oversight destined to live on the streets or commit suicide

- people who are unemployable would have income and dignity of life

 

I'm not sure exactly how the GAI works in Denmark, but it seems to be successful. We would have to do a "best practices" analysis before we rolled out the idea, as we have to be able to show that it's feasible.

The right will have their guns drawn, saying it's too costly and that it encourages laziness. If we can present the research on existing GAI regimes, we can undercut their arguments right off the bat.

I know it won't solve all our problems (I was born at night, but not last night.) However, I do think it would be transformational, nonetheless. At least it would take some of the "precariousness" out of precarious labour.  

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
If we can present the research on existing GAI regimes, we can undercut their arguments right off the bat.

Quote:
I'm not sure exactly how the GAI works in Denmark, but it seems to be successful.

That should be sufficient.

Sean in Ottawa

The NDP in this election gave up on two consitutencies.

1) Voters who have not made it into the middle class

2) Voters who have but want to support a party who fights for social justice for all

The exclusionary language of the middle class being the focal point of the NDP campaign has to go. The NDP is not going to get elected just by the middle class voters who are thinking just of themselves. Policies have to reach beyond appealing to the (shrinking) middle class. As well I think it is a mistake to assume that the middle class has more voters to offer the NDP than the ones the NDP just spent a whole campaign mostly ignoring -- and explicitly saying they did not put them as a priority.

So the first thing is not to exclude a large number of voters. It is true that lower income people may not vote at as high a rate as higher income people but there are still a lot of votes there.

As far as policies I have been speaking about some of these here:

-- relating business tax to actual salaries paid

-- Addressing the hours workers have to set aside for unpaid time their employer insists they be available to work just in case

-- working with provinces and cities to reduce the tax that comes from lower income residential housing to boost affordability

-- removing the income tax on lower incomes by boosting the basic exemption (double it)

I can add:

-- demorcratizing information

I agree with:

-- inheritence taxes

I also agree with a different approach to trade deals  -- particularly to identify and respond to the issue of low wages and working conditions as a subsidy. I agree with the principle Pondering raised that there ought to be minimum standards -- or at least a mechanism for duties when wages that are illegal in Canada subsidize products imported to Canada competing with domestic workers.

-- Seeking to extend medicare to not only pharmacare but also eye glasses

 

alan smithee alan smithee's picture

wage zombie wrote:

alan smithee wrote:

I'd just like to remind people here that if you identify yourself as 'left' or as a 'progressive' you are by definition a liberal.

That doesn't sound right to me.

It's a fact. What are you,then? A Conservative?

takeitslowly

we lost because we tried to be everything to everyone. we need top notch economic advisors and top notch media strategists.

we need to be aggressively repetitive and simplify our messages like the the liberals.

 

polices come later. no one gives a shit about policies. Fight the media war first!

Sean in Ottawa

takeitslowly wrote:

we lost because we tried to be everything to everyone. we need top notch economic advisors and top notch media strategists.

we need to be aggressively repetitive and simplify our messages like the the liberals.

 

polices come later.

Maybe appealing to the narrow personal interest of the middle class is not the right strategy.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
polices come later. no one gives a shit about policies. Fight the media war first!

Is this still the tantrum talking?

Pondering

We don't need to go all the way to Denmark,

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2014/12/23/mincome-in-dauphin-manitoba_n_63...

Between 1974 and 1979, residents of a small Manitoba city were selected to be subjects in a project that ensured basic annual incomes for everyone. For five years, monthly cheques were delivered to the poorest residents of Dauphin, Man. – no strings attached.

And for five years, poverty was completely eliminated.

The program was dubbed “Mincome” – a neologism of “minimum income” – and it was the first of its kind in North America. It stood out from similar American projects at the time because it didn’t shut out seniors and the disabled from qualification.

The project’s original intent was to evaluate if giving cheques to the working poor, enough to top-up their incomes to a living wage, would kill people’s motivation to work. It didn’t.

But the Conservative government that took power provincially in 1977 – and federally in 1979 – had no interest in implementing the project more widely. Researchers were told to pack up the project’s records into 1,800 boxes and place them in storage.......

In 2011, Forget released a paper distilling how Mincome affected people’s health using census data. She found overall hospitalization rates (for accidents, injuries, and mental health diagnoses) dropped in the group who received basic income supplements......

By giving a community’s poorest residents enough to lift their incomes above the poverty line, there was a measurable impact on the health care system. It’s this kind of logic that Forget hopes will propel the idea of basic income forward, four decades later.

...

In Canada, the idea of an universal basic income was first presented at a Progressive Conservative policy convention in October of 1969. Then-leader Robert Stanfield argued the idea would consolidate overlapping security programs and reduce bureaucracy.

But in the last two elections, Segal says poverty did not come up in television debates between party leaders once. It’s something he doesn’t want to see repeated.

“I think it’s an abomination that we wouldn’t discuss it when we have close to 10 per cent of the population living beneath the poverty line.”

Yet he remains more optimistic in this decade than the last because of signs of interest from the federal Liberal and Green parties.

There is no shortage  examples of best practices in education, housing, and health care that would help citizens and save them money at the same time. The problem is the lack of a progressive political party focused on benefiting the 99%.  They all support status quo and see "social programs" as something directed at the poor or lower middle-class not something that benefits society as a whole.

Trudeau argued that we have to help FNs education because they are the fastest growing population in Canada. They can either become contributors, or they can become a huge burden on society. Short-changing them on education is idiotic.

http://www.macleans.ca/education/the-new-program-that-has-first-nations-...

All that started to change in 2010, when the Martin Aboriginal Education Initiative, founded by former Liberal prime minister Paul Martin, brought a model school project to Hillside, and also to Walpole Island Elementary School, in another Ojibwa community about a two-hour drive from Kettle Point. The project’s aim was to overhaul the way reading and writing was taught to students like Dayna. Four years later, the test results they achieved were nothing short of inspiring.

When the project was launched, only 13 per cent of Grade 3 students at the two schools met or exceeded Ontario’s target for reading proficiency when they took the province’s standardized Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) test. By 2014, 67 per cent met or bettered that EQAO standard, just a shade below the 70 per cent of students who succeeded province-wide at public schools. Similar steady progress was tracked in the EQAO tests for Grade 6 students at the two schools.....

We already know there are better models for health care than Canada's. The NDP doesn't need to be radical in any way.

New data from the National Household Survey (NHS) show that 1,400,685 people had an Aboriginal identity in 2011, representing 4.3% of the total Canadian population. Aboriginal people accounted for 3.8% of the population enumerated in the 2006 Census, 3.3% in the 2001 Census and 2.8% in the 1996 Census.

http://www12.statcan.gc.ca/nhs-enm/2011/as-sa/99-011-x/99-011-x2011001-e...

In theory people want to be good to others, to help the downtrodden, to correct the sins of the past, to help refugees, but it only goes so far. If it starts threatening the quality of life of the majority the line is drawn. We will bring in 25K refugees, not 10 million.

The problem with the Leap Manifesto is not what it is proposing, it is how they are framing it. Aboriginal people represent less than 5% of the Canadian population, yet the Leap Manifesto begins with respecting the inherent right of aboriginals. Obviously we should do that but it is not a good opening line to convince people to elect you to run the country. 

It is possible to act with integrity while targeting your arguments to your audience, the people whose votes you want. Conservatives used clever slogans, like "right to work" and "the government thinks they know how to spend your money better than you do". Competition keeps prices down therefore barriers should be reduced to help consumers. Consumers are being prevented from enjoying low prices for dairy which impacts the poor the most. Civil servant unions bleed the public purse with generous benefits most people will never achieve. Progressives need to learn marketing skills but use them for good, never to mislead, always to inform. Progressives should always stand in defence of people who are in need but that doesn't have to be the central theme.

It's not that the NDP moved too far to the centre or right. It's that the centre doesn't represent the 99%.

takeitslowly

we need to get top notch economic advisors to endorse our economic plan, we need to sound credible and sincere, we need to pull people's heartsrings. NDP talk to much, we need to be repetitive and simplfy our messages, we need to get good media people who can create  special moments , like trudeau boxing , or dancing to punjabi music, we need more of those. all the policies dont make a differences people just want to moved and touched and feel good by a campaign. Mulcair looked a bit creepy at the end . Mulcair promised too much, and didnt seem very trustworthy

mark_alfred

Agreed.  Policy is meaningless.  It's those special moments that do it.

takeitslowly

you have to win hearts first,

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

You have to grow the economy from the heart outward.

wage zombie

Mulcair needs to get his salsa on.

takeitslowly

the rest will balance itself.

JKR

takeitslowly wrote:

we need to get top notch economic advisors to endorse our economic plan, we need to sound credible and sincere, we need to pull people's heartsrings. NDP talk to much, we need to be repetitive and simplfy our messages, we need to get good media people who can create  special moments , like trudeau boxing , or dancing to punjabi music, we need more of those. all the policies dont make a differences people just want to moved and touched and feel good by a campaign. Mulcair looked a bit creepy at the end . Mulcair promised too much, and didnt seem very trustworthy

I think a lot of Canada's advertising executives support the Conservatives and Liberals and it shows in their election campaigns. I think the NDP would do better if it solicited more advice from the advertising industry. Politics is just as much or if not more about selling than it is about policy. If the ad industry can successfully sell unhealthy things like Coke and McDonalds it should be able to sell a quality brand like the NDP.

takeitslowly

and try not to promote kevin page so much because he dissed our budget.

Unionist

JKR wrote:
If the ad industry can successfully sell unhealthy things like Coke and McDonalds it should be able to sell a quality brand like the NDP.

I'm not following you. The NDP sold out long ago.

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