What'll take to move the NDP from its current 20% in the polls to 25% in the next election

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NorthReport
What'll take to move the NDP from its current 20% in the polls to 25% in the next election

-_-

NorthReport

Be careful what you ask for.

With his track record I think Jack should stay on for a while yet.

When he does eventually decide to step down the NDP will be fortunate to get somebody of his calibre to replace him.  

 

A bit of perspective concerning the NDP's House of Commons Seat Count

2008 election - NDP - 37 seats, up 24 seats or up 285% since Layton elected NDP Leader 

2006 election - NDP - 29 seats, up 16 seats or up 123% since Layton elected NDP Leader 

2004 election - NDP - 19 seats, up 6 seats or up 46% since Layton elected NDP Leader

2003 Layton elected NDP Leader

2000 election - NDP - 13 seats

NorthReport

There were many good suggestions, lots from people that don't post here frequently in the last thread that it seemed worthwhile to continue the discussion. I agree about not losing the focus around economics or the class struggle between the very few rich and the vast poor. Some of the other issues are just attempts to derail the NDP from trying to achieve a just society for all.

Mulcair was born in October 54 so he may be a bit long in the tooth (Harper was born in April 59) when Layton steps down as Leader.

The NDP should be looking for someone who is presently in their 30s or 40s for their next leader when Layton steps down 5-10 years from now. 

DaveW

 

not to take anything away from Layton, but the 1990s were rock bottom for the NDP, in a 5-party environment

for reference,

how many seats did they have when David Lewis held federal balance of power, 1972-74 ?

 ....................

 A. : 31 seats

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_federal_election,_1972

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Thanks, NR. I'm just five years older than Mulclair apparently ; )

netsia netsia's picture

It is looking like the socio-economic landscape is becoming a situation the NDP have better credentials than the other parties to be focusing voter interest on addressing, they could and maybe should become the populist central party to reinstate social values that Canadians do cherish and are threatened by the blues & reds, in fact the successions of blue & red governments have been steadily eliminating what Canadians want for their society(the blue-then-red changing of the guard election show mechanism is the show horse that's been functioning to sell Canada out, isn't it?), the NDP could almost become populist through this grounded message-policy proposals that give the mass of voters solid hope and again a recharge of Canadian values, the ones that are starting to disappear, I know & you know that the vast majority of Canadians feel this and feel increasingly deeply threatened by this blue-red led trend, cyclical but still an apparent trend viewed over time, and the NDP can U-turn this around positively in contrast to the blue-red spin campaigns that aim to perpetuate the status quo for the interests they really represent (who they are actually bought by) through fear mongering and empty bickering antics taking up way to much public consciousness as media dribble. That cynical media technology driven approach has served to weaken, alienate and disinterest many, the NDP as a populist party could break through this, organizing through workers movements of all types would be a great foundation, health care workers, teachers, etc. etc. etc., everyone whose very livelihood has become threatened by government.

They need to hone their message and refine their policies though, the socialist policies the party is built on, that's a natural. They are unproven in terms of having power to lead-govern so they really really have to take refining and thoroughly analyzing the strengths of their policy positions seriously and get that across, they have TRANSPARENCY on their side as one huge public issue they can push hard with, in fact should be able to steam-roll the blue-red in this area. They do have really strong, emotively committed empathic individuals as MPs who are also diverse, not in a hand picked but in an authentic sense and therefore represent and speak exceptionally well on the substance of diversity issues, this whole aspect to a socio-culturally diverse society, and they have tons of experience in attack, NDP MPs critique government with sustained articulation addressing substance in full, I'm always impressed by how they persevere in asking the full questions providing full context during question period, again unlike the b-r who more ape Westminster, like some side show.

 

They could possibly give the 'Green' issue over to the Greens, the Green's env. policy + where it comes from, including Global Green political entity, makes the Greens more radical, quite a lot farther forward than the rest as far as I've been able to compare and analyse anyway & if the Greens get seats they would only be of help in Parliament, obviously would be a greatest possible thorn in the side of the Tar Sands projects backed blues & reds.

Saying most basically that they can likely go far in this time by really focusing on their core principles as the real alternative central party.

David Young

'The real alternative central party' netsia?

Not if the NDP wants to survive.

The CCF/NDP has helped shape Canada into the best country on this planet by envisioning programs which the federal Liberal party steals and impliments.  It's an arrangement that the vast majority of voters have been satisfied with since the first old-age pension was envisioned by J.S. Woodsworth in the 1920's.

By staying true to the political left, hopefully the NDP will show the voters that they don't need the Liberals to steal NDP ideas; that electing an NDP government cuts out the political middle-man.

Wouldn't that be the Liberals' worst nightmare?

As long as Jack Layton stays the course that he's been on, the next election (Jack's fourth as leader) should see the NDP take the same leap in elected M.P.s that happened when Ed Broadbent led the NDP into the 1988 election (his fourth).

With quality candidates, and a leader the voters seem more and more comfortable in supporting, watch NDP support continue to climb!

I think!

 

 

netsia netsia's picture

And a party voters can actually trust, that little teeny-tiny issue known as TRANSPARENCY, check this CBC article & note the NDP pursues the hard questions while a Liberal only makes a tepid comment:

http://license.icopyright.net/user/viewFreeUse.act?fuid=NzM3NzI0Mg==

Geoff OB

I think the "leap" David refers to is more of a leap of faith than anything else.  For starters, the BQ and the Green Party didn't exist in the days of David Lewis and Ed Broadbent.  Consequently, the impact of gaining a few more seats doesn't mean what it once did.

However, the biggest barriers to our success are internal.  The powers-that-be within the party, including the party apparatchiks and the union bureaucracy, seem to believe that we can rely on the same ideas and the same strategies of the past to achieve the breakthrough we're all hoping for in the future. 

The polls suggest otherwise.  Here we are in the worst economic crash since the 30's, and we've hardly budged in terms of popular support.

Party conventions and provincial councils (in Ontario, at least) are carefully choreographed events, designed to reinforce the positions of the status quo, and marginalize the views of those who dare to challenge those positions.  We talk a great line about changing Canada, and the world for that matter, but even a whisper about changing our party sends the party establishment running for cover.  We are true conservatives in that regard.

Unless we find a way to empower the membership and the riding associations, and take some risks in debating issues that make the leadership a little uncomfortable, we will soon find ourselves looking more and more like the Social Credit Party of the left, an increasingly irrelevant party from a bygone era.

 

Geoff OB

Oops! That would be Dennis.  Sorry.

NorthReport

GOB

A perfect example of that will be next weekend's BC NDP's provincial council meeting in Burnaby. Watch the party hierarchy creep around the place trying to make sure no one will raise the issue of leadership. Laughing

Part of the problem is that some people obtain positions of influence such as a riding president and then they sit on their laurels. I'm not sure why, but when a person gets a little bit of power, it often goes to their head. Sometimes they just seem more interested in how their position is going to look on their resume, rather than what they can actually do to improve things.   

There were a lot of great organizing ideas generated at the Halifax convention last summer - how many ridings have actually put them, any of them, into practice?

Now I saw something this week that might do wonders to raise the NDP's profile in our respective communities. During an evening rush hour, at a busy vehicle intersection, there was this guy holding up a bright yellow sign with the big, bold, black letters "HST" on it. I think there was some other smaller writing on the sign as well, however I couldn't make it out. But everybody knew what the sign meant. I thought it was a brilliant approach to marketing your message.

Why couldn't the NDP do something like that with a very lightweight, bright, orange, and perhaps fluorescent sign, so it is easy to read in the dark with a big, bold, blue, and very, very short, one word if possible, message on it, It could be times across the country so they were all done at the same time on a different day and at different locations in our communities each week.  As usual there are way too many bosses and no where near enough labourers. Somehow we need to elevate the role of labourer in the NDP as well as our society. Maybe all the riding presidents could hold the sign up personally as part of their job description, and those that refused could be repalced by those folks who actually are prepared to roll up their sleeves and actually do some constructive hands-on work. Those that give a shit.  

adma

NorthReport wrote:
The NDP should be looking for someone who is presently in their 30s or 40s for their next leader when Layton steps down 5-10 years from now. 

And the interesting thing there is, the NDP's not lacking in "potential worthy successor" talent out there, even among its present caucus--think Angus, Cullen, Dewar, etc.  And in Angus's case, especially, I've long felt there to be something that could take urban/rural "Layton appeal" to another dimension...

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

You wouldn't have a week for "Canada Out Of Afghanistan!"?

This would actually work well with the"jobs" emphasis, since you could point out that withdrawing Canadian troops from the conflict would free up a lot of funds to help create jobs.

 

 

NorthReport

Here are some suggestions for some sign messaging to show Canadians what the NDP issues are:

Week One - "Jobs"

Week Two - "More Jobs"

Week Three - "Decent Jobs"

Week Four - "Decent Jobs"

Week Five - "Health Care"

Week Six - "EI"

Week Seven - "Pensions"

Week Eight - "Skills Training"

Week Nine - "First Nations"

Week Ten - "Education"

Week Eleven - "Child Care"

Week Twelve - "Decent Jobs"

Weel Thirteen - "Climate Change"

Week Fourteen - "Green Jobs"

Week fifteen - "Poverty"

Week Sixteen - "Decent Jobs"

Week Seventeen - " No War"

Week Eighteen - "Decent Jobs"

Week Nineteen - "Seniors Care"

Week Twenty - "Decent Jobs"

Week Twenty-One - "National Parks"

Week Twenty-Two - "Green Jobs"

Week Twenty-Three - "Science Research"

Week Twenty-Four - "Decent jobs"

Week Twenty-Five - "Artists"

Week Twenty-Six - "Green Jobs"

Week Twenty-Seven - "Youth"

Week Twenty-Eight - "Green Jobs"

Week Twenty-Nine - "Unions"

Week Thirty - "Green Jobs"

Week Thirty-One - "Business"

Week Thirty-Two - "Green Jobs"

Week Thirty-Three - "Culture"

Week Thirty-Four - "Green Jobs"

Week Thirty-five - "Sports"

Week Thirty-Six - "Green Jobs"

Week Thirty-Seven - "Taxation"

Week Thirty-Eight - "Green Jobs"

And so on.

NorthReport

adma

I agree there is lots of superb talent presently within the Caucus.

Ideally though Layton's replacement comes from Quebec, better yet rural Quebec, so the NPD needs to get some great candidates running in the winneable ridings.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

ARE there winnable ridings in rural Quebec?

(edited-realized I'd probably gone a bit too far with that middle bit).

Does progressive politics of any stripe exist in rural Quebec?

WingNut

Hello my fellow Endippelers.

The question of how to increase size has plagued third parties since the early days of the Roman bath. But, in the present case, the matter of how to raise the NDP's poll number, is a pickle for which there is a jar. It is known more fully as communication.

Now I'm not talkin' that namby-pamby communication of oratory washed, dried, and sanitized so as to avoid ever being confused with an actual political position by that imaginary, but incredibly key Tim Horton's constituency. No sir. And no ma'am. I'm talking about pissing off those pundits of the neo-liberal plutocracy.

From here, and here being somewhere out there, I'd say the NDP are chicken. I'd say the NDP are so afraid of bad press and losing a few, blue haired, temporary Liberal votes, they ain't got the wherewithal to go into battle for hard votes.

Consider what ammo has been handed out to the NDP by the bad, bad Harper Clown. The Conservative budget, which the Liberals oppose but will vote for (hey, what was wrong with that guy Dion, anyway?),  is going to--now get this!--cut taxes but raise revenues as a result. This sort of piss poor math skills only belong to the obedient desciples of the neo-liberal persuasion. Here is their argument: "by cutting taxes we give business more money to invest in the economy."

Yeah ...

There is a little problem with that. Well several problems. And big problems.

One big problem is that, well, everyone's in debt as symbolized by the bloated federal deficit. So, with everyone in debt, why wouldn't businesses use those tax cuts to pay their own down debt as opposed to investing in extra capacity to serve a market constrained by debt?  Jimmy "the gnome" Flaherty even presented his budget to empathize with the financially distressed family who has padlocked the family purse. But it's just not that everyone's in hock, it's also a matter of opportunity.

Canada's economy sits on a two legged stool: One leg harvests Canada's natural resources for the purpose of exporting to nations that build things, and the other leg rests on a consumerist culture that devours the stuff that was built in those countries that still build things (then we send it back to them as industrial shits--big turds of often toxic chemistry delivered in the exact same containers in which the stuff arrived).

Anyone who ever sat on a two legged stool knows two things: One, remain alert, and; two, you will fall eventually. But Canada's two legged stool, as precarious as it is, has another problem. The consumer leg is being eroded rapidly by debt termites.

The pom-pom press keeps saying "oh, look! Blue economic skies for as far as the eye can see!" But the pom-pom press along with the pom-pom pols all missed the economic crash. Missed it. Entirely. Bearing down on them like a big fucking bus with all windows open while carrying dueling Dixieland bands and they missed it. So now, of course, we trust them.

But they continue to miss it. The recent increase in consumer "confidence" they all like to point to, is still all debt based. People buying them climate fucking Dodge Rams aren't paying cash. Neither are those new home buyers spiking the real estate market. They all hold jobs and pay make their debt payments on the basis of a growing consumer economy in a nation that exports raw material and buys it back as finished products and fueled entirely on debt.

So now you're thinking, "fuck Wingnut, shaddup already." Soon, I promise.

The thing about it is that the solution is in an economic strategy. Such a strange animal, so rare to these barren parts, would map out a plan for Canada to rebuild a domestic, productive economy. The NDP can do this. The NDP could develop and communicate a vision for an economy where Canadians return to a productive labour force building things for each other. Then businesses would have investment opportunities.

The Cons can't ever do such a thing because they are ideologically opposed to any sort of economic planning.  They are economic libertarian anarchists (although they're quite happy to dictate your social life).

So consider the talking points (I said SOON!):

Their budget defies the simple logic of arithmetic: They will increase revenues by cutting revenues in the same way I will pay off my bills faster if I quit my second part-time job.

Their "plan" is based on the improbable likelihood that a heavily indebted, job-insecure consumer economy will endlessly go into debt to buy more foreign stuff made from our own stuff.

They can't develop any alternative to more of the same because they're religiously prohibited from thought (the dogma knows all).

But the one simple key message: Conservatives care more about the financial wellbeing of some unknown person in a 20th floor penthouse in some non-descript glass tower in some foreign capital known as an "investor", then they do their own friends, neighbours, or family. Everything they do is at the behest of that investor and at the expense of those who should matter to them most.

Who would vote for people like that?

Doug

Anywhere from a third to 40% of the public, depending on the poll.

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

My fine dippered friend, you're wrong. If 40% of the public would vote for those type of people they would have a majority in this great democratic backwater we call the Family Compact. In fact, they don't vote for those type of people even when the message is massaged to appear as appetizing and common as pie made from Chinese apples. It is the competition who refuses to point at the inmates of Harper Hotel and call them out (lest they be punished for standing openly and clearly with that majority of Canadians who look at the Conservatives warily and say, "something ain't right about them. They're creepy") that empowers those Conservative devils.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I really don't get why Harper keeps his poll numbers ahead of the other parties, until I remember this is a really conservative country - and we're stuck with FPTP.

WingNut

... 'tis better to have worn gloves and measured cost, than to have ever risked at all ...

KeyStone

Thomas Mulclair as leader.
Some substantive policy ideas.
A plan to show that a prosperous economy and a affirmation to human dignity need not be mutually exclusive.

Of course, having a good number at the olls, and keeping that come E-day are two different things.
The Liberals with their 'a vote for the NDP is a vote for the Conservatives' chant usually eats away 5% or so, of the support, as they exploit the holes in our anarchistic FPTP system, which the Liberals support, for that very reason.

Stockholm

KeyStone wrote:

 

The Liberals with their 'a vote for the NDP is a vote for the Conservatives' chant usually eats away 5% or so, of the support, as they exploit the holes in our anarchistic FPTP system, which the Liberals support, for that very reason.

 

In the last two elections, the Liberals tried that tactic and it failed miserbly both times.

RedRover

I wanted to reply to this thread earlier, but did not have time.

In order to get to 25%, the NDP must first reach 20% in two consecutive polls.

Thank you.  That is all.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

What about...

In order to get to 20% in the polls, the NDP needs to increase its support by at lease five percentage points.

Get that covered and you've got it made.

 

West Coast Lefty

The Director of Organization for the federal NDP is Nathan Rothman (sp?), I believe.  To the fed party's credit, for the first time in ages, we have dedicated federal field organizers in place in most regions in this pre-election period.  Fed Office has also recently launched a new fundraising incentive where the central party will chip in 50 cents for every $1 raised at the riding level for non-incumbent ridings b/w March 1 and April 30, 2010.  We haven't seen that kind of spur to local fundraising, targeted directly at winning new seats rather than defending current incumbents, in a long time in the federal party.

One of the biggest barriers to moving from 20 to 25% for the federal NDP is the integrated fed/provincial party structure, which no other major federal party has to deal with except us Dippers.  For many years, all federal field organizers had to work within the provincial office structure of the relevant provincial section, which was totally useless in terms of dedicated support to federal ridings, at least from our experience in BC.  As noted above, the new approach with Brad Lavigne as National Director is for dedicated federal field staff who report directly to Federal Office and who serve the federal riding associations (or EDAs as they are now called) as their main focus, a key ingredient for growth in future elections.

Similarly, the main communication to members is through the provincial sections, so that many young NDPers who signed up for Layton's leadership campaign in 2002 based on his themes of green jobs, fighting Star Wars and grassroots energy were flooded with mail from then-NDP leaders Joy MacPhail and Howard Hampton, senior Cabinet Ministers in previous NDP governments who those young recruits likely protested against in years past.  I believe less then 20% of the Layton sign-ups in Ontario renewed their memberships as a result.  Luckily, the new fed/prov NDP service agreements allow for much more direct communication between the federal NDP and its members. 

I credit Layton and Lavigne for pushing the current unified structure as far as it can go in terms of maintaining a strong federal presence, but I continue to believe we'll need to cut the fed/prov ties if we truly want to go for Official Opposition and eventually government.  Obama didn't beat Clinton and McCain by working through state Democratic Party structures in the battlefield states, and we won't beat the BQ, Libs and Cons by depending on provincial sections, esp with the ONDP being marginal outside the NDP core ridings and the BC NDP being on the verge of financial collapse. 

Frustrated Mess Frustrated Mess's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

What about...

In order to get to 20% in the polls, the NDP needs to increase its support by at lease five percentage points.

Get that covered and you've got it made.

 

And the solution to poverty is making everyone wealthy?

netsia netsia's picture

Here's something inovative that they could do to get there: You know how it's been recorded that lower percentages of eligible voters have been voting in successive elections. Moving from the assumption that the polling companies, meaning the ones that have their stats published because of supposedly being independent, reputable, etc., that others' comments suggested are often Liberal Party associated, well anyway, the NDP might do the polling work for the demographics that are voting less! This is suggesting the possibility that the 'establishment' polling companies of today are selective to some extent, which thinking about it makes me expect may be true, at least there must be some kind of skewing in their methodology since they do not report in a way that gages the fluctuations in 'voter apathy' say?! I don't know but would be interested in learning about that & the whys of on an equally regular basis, a robustly healthy democracy is an engaged one. I would hazzard to guess that a majority of the apathetic public who do not vote are in circumstances that the NDP's strong party principles would be appealing to, ...? Can they find this out? I guess the stragetic point here is that the NDP may be wasting a vast potential out there because of not doing the work to tap directly into their strongest potential for popular reach & appeal? Currently it may be that they are playing along within the proscripted confines of how the blue-red game in played? This is tapping the broader media issues too but I just wanted to put that one idea out there... So the question could become: What percent of the vote would the NDP win if we found ourselves in a situation where all the parties had to compete on the basis that close to 100% of eligible voters vote?

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

Frustrated Mess wrote:

Ken Burch wrote:

What about...

In order to get to 20% in the polls, the NDP needs to increase its support by at lease five percentage points.

Get that covered and you've got it made.

 

And the solution to poverty is making everyone wealthy?

Of course...and, in life, the most important thing is sincerity.  Once you can fake that, you've got it made.

Policywonk

netsia wrote:

They could possibly give the 'Green' issue over to the Greens, the Green's env. policy + where it comes from, including Global Green political entity, makes the Greens more radical, quite a lot farther forward than the rest as far as I've been able to compare and analyse anyway & if the Greens get seats they would only be of help in Parliament, obviously would be a greatest possible thorn in the side of the Tar Sands projects backed blues & reds.

Saying most basically that they can likely go far in this time by really focusing on their core principles as the real alternative central party.

Sustainability is a core principle of the NDP. Jobs and sustainability are inseparable.

Policywonk

DaveW wrote:

 

not to take anything away from Layton, but the 1990s were rock bottom for the NDP, in a 5-party environment

for reference,

how many seats did they have when David Lewis held federal balance of power, 1972-74 ?

 ....................

 A. : 31 seats

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_federal_election,_1972

That was a four Party System, and the Creditistes also held the balance of power with 15 seats.

Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

And how many seats did they have when David Lewis stepped down as leader in '74(after losing his OWN seat)?

15

NorthReport

Ken.

Absolutely.

See week seventeen.

I think the messaging needs to be as short as possible, hopefully even one word, which could all be backed up with solid research, the reasons for the idea, the benefits to Canadians by adopting these NDP positions, better yet, the advantages and benefits of electing an NDP government. There could be available in the form of flyers, brochures, websites, booklets left in doctor's office for example, websites, email messaging, facebook & twitter, community media, online publications like the tyee, etc. Fuck the national press.

NorthReport

This leadership issue is a bit absurd, but typical of the left. The NDP has the most popular Leader of all the parties and some want to change him. It's like the labour movement in BC. We have a right-wing government in power so what happens - no strikes. But just wait until the NDP is government again, and all of sudden BC will be flooded with strikes. Go figure. 

Every NDP riding should be actively working now, knocking on doors, and using the brilliant organizing ideas that were generated at the Halifax convention. Who is the chief organizer for the federal NDP?

NorthReport

WCG

Thanks for the feeddback - sounds like the universe is unfolding as it should at least for the federal NDP.

netsia

Apparently Australia has mandatory voting, and you are fined if you refuse to vote. I wonder what kind of impact, if any, it would have on NDP's fortunes, if mandatory voting was adopted in Canada. 

netsia netsia's picture

Thanks NorthReport, as you made me realize that probably why that question came to mind was from a conversation with an Australian the evening before, and who is quite dismayed and feels a bit lost here in terms of how to network across civil society groups, and describing by contrast how in Australia civil society is just totally engaged and when you're interested in something it's all right there waiting to engage you in!? So ya, likely mandatory voting has a big & positive effect... + then, how to gage whether it might mean the same thing here in reference to GPC prospects?~Ha!ha! My own supposition is that the NDP would be the largest beneficiaries by far and that the GPC would also be doing markedly better, in terms of getting some seats anyway?

fellowtraveller

Boom Boom wrote:
I really don't get why Harper keeps his poll numbers ahead of the other parties, until I remember this is a really conservative country - and we're stuck with FPTP.

Canada is far from a 'really conservative country'.

What it is politically is a profoundly centrist country, and with only a few exceptions the parties that present themselves as centrist win seats, lots of seats.

Sean in Ottawa

Canada is a very unpolitical country. One that is ideologically and politically naive for the most part.

Many people here think it does not matter. They think all politicians are the same because they can't tell the difference and have hardly known much different. We have such an overabundance of resources that no matter how badly we screw up there always seems to be more (although that may be coming to an end).

Most Canadians have never listened long enough to First Nations thought to realize there is an ideology there (more than one but recently they seem to be coalescing) -- they can't even sort out the European imports.

People fight for ideology in many countries but in Canada the people are, for the most part, complacent.

In that context it is difficult to say Canada is right left or centre-- more like unaware. Many of us are simply unaware of what these mean- unaware of the options that face us, unaware of the waste. They buy the propaganda that is sold be it Liberal or Conservative but when it comes to personal political convictions for the most part we are a blank slate.

Sorry but someone had to say this or we would descend into a discussion of what most people are thinking.

I do want to clarify that the lines of "unawareness" that run through our society are not divided by what people would recognize as economic or social class. Frankly the greatest division I see happens to be between immigrants who tend to be more politically aware, political activists and others who just happen to be unusually interested on the one hand and then all those, in the majority, who are just out to watch "So you think you can..." on the other.

This kind of apathy and ignorance is usually only resolved through some kind of hurt-- when people realize they have been screwed. But you can take a lot of screwing before you wake up, sad to say.

NorthReport

The NDP has now received 20% in the polls for the second time, in as may polls, according to ARS. Is this the reason for the sudden change in tactics by Ignatieff who now says, surprise, surprise, the Liberals now want to freeze corporate taxes?  

I always get nervous when the Liberals want to cozy up to the NDP - shades of Paul Martin anyone?

 

 

Quote:
Canada 150: Towards a new Liberal-NDP coalition?

 

After this weekend, those big structural policy differences between the Liberals and NDP no longer exist.

----------------

None of this means the NDP and the Liberals should now be expected to melt together in one big melting pot of non-partisan love. There are still substantial cultural differences between the two: the spit-polished, nattily attired gang of rootless cosmopolitans who descended upon the Montreal Hyatt this weekend were not New Democrats. They will run as discrete parties at the next election, and the details of their platforms will surely be different in a hundred ways.

But the disappearance of fundamental policy gaps between the two parties (I would say irreconcilable, but of course they managed to reconcile them for a couple of weeks in 2008 even with the environment and taxation differences) is one more reason why Michael Ignatieff needs to stop insisting, every time he is asked, that he would never cooperate with the NDP in - let's say it - a coalition of some sort after the next election.

Ignatieff likes to step backward when you say "Boo" to his face, and that's the result Stephen Harper achieved last autumn when he made it clear he will run against a Liberal-Bloc-NDP coalition whether the Liberal, Bloc and NDP say they want to have a coalition or not. Of course he will. One result of the Madness in 2008 was to handily polarize the electorate, sharply motivating Conservative supporters to want Harper to remain prime minister. He had no trouble recreating the same dynamic in 2009 when Ignatieff tried to force a fall election.

There are two possible responses to coalition talk: "Never!" and "Maybe." "Never!" was the one Ignatieff tried last autumn. It has the advantage of drawing a sharp distinction between himself and Dion's ruinous 2008 adventure. The disadvantage is that it's irresponsible. If, say, 120 Conservatives, 118 Liberals and 40 New Democrats were elected (leaving 30 Bloquistes; I just pulled these numbers out of the air, any other outcome is possible), it would simply be asinine for everyone to sit around and let Stephen Harper run everything for another two or four years when a stable Liberal-NDP arrangement (with or without Bloc support) could be envisioned.

It is fair for Ignatieff to say the 2008 adventure was a really bad idea. Dion had driven his party to its worst defeat ever in popular-vote terms. He needed, not only the entire NDP caucus, but nearly the entire Bloc, to hold the confidence of the House. He had already announced plans to resign his party's leadership. It is fair for a new leader to say he would not attempt such a rickety contraption. But he has an obligation to provide a government that corresponds to the broad will of the entire electorate, if he happens to find himself in a better position to do so than the Conservative leader after the next election. After his speech on Sunday, the odds of such an outcome just went way up.

 

http://www2.macleans.ca/2010/03/29/canada-150-towards-a-new-liberal-ndp-coalition/[/quote]

mmphosis

What'll take to move the NDP from its current 20% in the polls to 25% in our First-Past-The-Post popularity contest?

  • Go into coalition with the Greens and the Bloc Quebecois
  • Bring in Mixed Member Proportional Representation
  • Kill the corporation, and actually listen to what people want

or

  • Hide donations and donors.
  • Buy up most if not all of the newspapers, TV stations, and communications companies in Canada.
  • Hire a popular well-liked actor to be the leader. (ooh better not let the corporatist parties in Canada figure that one out. Although their egos are probably too inflated to let anyone else be the leader. And, it might backfire if the actress realizes what she's leading.)

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I forget exactly what prompted this in QP today, but both the Conservatives and NDP hammered away at the Liberals for stealing $60 billion from UIC (unemployment insurance) to spend elsewhere. Layton was demanding that Harper put the money back, and Harper repeatedly said the Liberals spent it all and it cannot be repaid. When voters are reminded about Liberal crimes of the past (stealing from UIC to pay for other projects, and the Sponsorship Scandal) not to mention eliminating the deficits of the 1990s on the backs of the provinces, why on earth would any intelligent person vote Liberal??? Beats the heck out of me.

Sean in Ottawa

Scarecrows vote Liberal and tin men vote Conservative.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Who do Dorothy and the Cowardly Lion vote for?

Sean in Ottawa

The cowardly lion doesn't vote he is too afraid.

Sorry to say Dorothy votes Republican (She's from Kansas).

Toto votes for himself (just like Dorothy)

The good witch of the North thankfully votes NDP.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

LOL!

remind remind's picture

Elimination  boom boom.....

peterjcassidy peterjcassidy's picture

Harburg co-wrote the tune "Over the Rainbow" with Harold Arlen for the film, which won the Academy Award in 1940. He was also the final script editor and made significant contributions to the dialogue.

But less well known is that "Yip" Harburg was a socialist, and was blacklisted during the McCarthy period....

In 1929 Harburg wrote, "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime," the song that captured the essence of the Great Depression and the reality of millions struggling to get by. The song became a national hit and remains an anthem for difficult times, and anger at corporate greed.

The lyrics represented the sentiments of working people: "Once I built a railroad, I made it run, made it race against time. Once I built a railroad; now it's done. Brother, can you spare a dime?"

Writer Phillip Bonosky, who was cultural editor of this newspaper's predecessor, the Daily Worker, says "The Wizard of Oz" was based on the atmosphere of the times.

"The book was written by a socialist and the fable highlights some of society's contradictions of that period," Bonosky, 93, said in a phone interview. "The Wizard of Oz" was in many ways a metaphor for what was happening in reality, he said.

In a 2006 interview with Amy Goodman on "Democracy Now," Harburg's son Ernie Harburg said "Wizard of Oz" was about common people confronting and defeating seemingly insurmountable and violent oppression. The Scarecrow represented farmers, the Tin Man stood for factory workers, and the Munchkins of the "Lollipop Guild" were the union members, he said. There was at least 30 percent unemployment at those times, Ernie Harburg recalled. Among African Americans and minorities it was 50-60 percent, he said.

Goodman said, "While academic debate persists over whether Baum intended the story as a political allegory about the rise of industrial monopolists like John D. Rockefeller and the subsequent populist backlash, there is no doubt that Harburg's influence made the 1939 film version more political."

Bonosky said "Wizard of Oz" offers an alternative history of that period. "It's kind of like an unknown part of our history," he said. "It's a very profound part of the American past and its messages could really educate younger generations."

 

During the McCarthy period, Harburg was a victim of the Hollywood blacklist when movie studio bosses blacklisted industry people for suspected involvement or sympathy with the Communist Party USA. Harburg was banned from TV and film work from 1951 to 1962.

 

Harburg was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1972. In 2005, the United States Postal Service issued a commemorative stamp recognizing his accomplishments. He died in 1981 at age 8

http://www.peoplesworld.org/yip-harburg-wizard-of-oz-songwriter-socialist/

ottawaobserver

Thank you for that, Peter.  I read the entire Oz series, and it was all about common stores of food in the Emerald City, and how apart from those nasty (outside) witches, really everyone got along quite well, and shared and stuff.  I always thought Baum must have been a lefty, but never inquired further.

We're definitely not in Kansas these days!

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Fascinating history!

TMN.ca has played The Wizard of Oz several times this month on ExpressVu satellite TV.

Sean in Ottawa

I just can't get the image of a scarecrow with big bushy eyebrows out of my mind

Cueball Cueball's picture

NorthReport wrote:

Be careful what you ask for.

With his track record I think Jack should stay on for a while yet.

When he does eventually decide to step down the NDP will be fortunate to get somebody of his calibre to replace him.  

A bit of perspective concerning the NDP's House of Commons Seat Count

2008 election - NDP - 37 seats, up 24 seats or up 285% since Layton elected NDP Leader 

2006 election - NDP - 29 seats, up 16 seats or up 123% since Layton elected NDP Leader 

2004 election - NDP - 19 seats, up 6 seats or up 46% since Layton elected NDP Leader

2003 Layton elected NDP Leader

2000 election - NDP - 13 seats

 

I don't know what the NDP can do in terms of its political vision, but it did occur to me that fans might consider not trying to change the subject every time someone criticizes the NDP or one of its representatives.

I was reading through one of the recent Cheri DiNovo threads about her position on "Anti-Apartheid Week" the other day, and low and behold, by the time I got to the bottom of the thread I found myself reading about the Nickel miners strike in Sudbury. I was a little surprised at this development, since when researched her position on that particular issue I found her online page, and couldn't find anything specifically relating to the long drawn out miners strike in Sudbury. Indeed, the only link I could find that connected Dinovo and Sudbury nickel miners when I googled for it was the Rabble thread I was just then reading. I did find a nice piece about her going to a rally to defend a person whose dogs had been taken from them, "even though they were not pitbulls". Good news no doubt, some nickel miners are no doubt dog owners and they will be impressed surely at her steadfast stand on that issue.

"Hugs all round" people! Laughing

We should, one NDP diehard opined, " bring proportion to the incident". I agree, lets measure racist pass law systems, 43 years of martial law and occupation and segraration for a definable racial minority in the Middle East, and the rights of Ontario dog owners"?

It was then I realized a funny coincidence. I seem to remember that when the subject of labour issues and the NDP comes up, and someone suggests that the NDP has moved away from core issues, such as the rights of unionized workers. and that it is distancing itself from these concerns that many consider to bedrock "left" issues (indeed those very same people who were talking up the Nickel miners strike on the the the thread about Israeli Apartheid harkened to the refrain of these bedrock traditional NDP values) we suddenly end up talking about the need to protect health care in Canada or some such thing, to the purpose of winning over a "broader spectrum" of Canadian voters, and not just the union movement.

Fascinating, really. I have some trouble catching up with what seems to be the endless game of "ideological chairs" (you know the game where everyone takes a position in an ideological chair and then one chair is removed every round, until there are no positions left and everyone is left standing around and looking foolish?), but I get the distinct impression that if I started a conversation about the problems with the NDP position on health care, i would suddenly start finding out how good the NDP was at protecting the fundamental human rights of Palestinians.

Why not pick a chair and sit it, before the next Liberal leader comes along and sneaks it off to the back room and starts polishing it up for presentation to the public? Just a thought.

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