Ontario General Election 2014

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Rokossovsky

Aristotleded24 wrote:

josh wrote:
Have to laugh at the party hacks on here attacking Salutin as a "wacko" and a Liberal when he's far more sane and left than either of them.

[Cut a bunch of valid points, to the chase] He seems unaware or does not acknowledge that in both cases, the conservatives would likely have won an election whenever it happened anyways, and there would have been nothing the Liberals could have done to stop it.

No one here has yet to answer my previous question, which is why people think that another year of this political formulation would in anyway "Stop Hudak", delay, is not to stop.

Unionist

Salutin's article is mostly drivel, IMO, because it tries to situate policies and parties as "left" or "right" or something in between, terms which mean different things to different people. I prefer to look at policies and consider whether they serve the interests of the vast majority of people, or those of the wealthy powerful elite, or neither, or both. And whether those who propose them are sincere, and linked to popular movements, or just self-serving and opportunistic.

For example, sending every hydro user a $100 rebate. Is that "left" or "right"? Or just plain what it looks like (cynical politiciking)?

Or, the shared NDP-Liberal 15% cuts in auto insurance. Left, right, or straight down? This, from a party which broke its promise to make auto insurance public (and I don't know whether they've revived that, or they're too busy emphasizing the broken promises of others)?

And then there's simple respect for people's intelligence. This is from the ONDP's policy book, as it currently appears on the ONDP website:

Quote:
We will also work with Jack Layton and the federal New Democrat team to push for the expansion of Canada Pension Plan benefits.

Well, let's charitably take that as a slip of the editor's mouse. What we do know is that the first time any government in Canada actually tabled a budget proposing what the ONDP itself called for (see their above-linked policy book), they said they wouldn't support the budget. Why? Because the Liberals can't be trusted. As if the Liberals were trustworthy before!!??

It seems to me that someone who cares about people would have welcomed the positive parts of the budget, expressed a serious concern about trust, and laid down some red lines - "implement the pension plan by DATE X, or we'll support a non-confidence vote". Likewise with other positive aspects. Then, when the government falls, it falls for reasons that people can understand - betrayal of their promises which sincere folks were prepared to support - not electoral opportunism on the part of Ms. Horwath and her handlers.

MegB

FYI Skinny Dipper, policy here is that we don't post entire articles, but post a relevant quote with a link. Thanks.

Brachina

 Its not that they couldn't he trusted, its that they're not implementing what was in the last budget. What's the point if all of it is nothing, but words written in a budget document that never turns into a reality.

Rokossovsky

Unionist wrote:
Seems to me that someone who cares about people would have welcomed the positive parts of the budget, expressed a serious concern about trust, and laid down some red lines - "implement the pension plan by DATE X, or we'll support a non-confidence vote". Likewise with other positive aspects. Then, when the government falls, it falls for reasons that people can understand - betrayal of their promises which sincere folks were prepared to support - not electoral opportunism on the part of Ms. Horwath and her handlers.

An excellent point, seeing as Wynne was most intent that no such thing might transpire, given how fast she ran down the Lieutenant governors office to dissolve the government without debating the budget, while even at that same time, Liberal organizers were distributing literature about how the NDP had "Voted" against increased child care benefits.

Wynne, very easily could have given Horwath time to consider her position, table the budget and then work through issues, and then wait for her friends at the Council of Trades and Unifor to apply pressure. But she wanted none of that messy democratic process stuff in the way of her "best shot" chance of winning a majority.

I imagine that Horwath would be intractable, but obviously the Liberals thought an election was to their advantage. There isn't any way around that fact.

The government did not "fall". It was dissolved, in point of fact.

Unionist

Brachina wrote:

 Its not that they couldn't he trusted, its that they're not implementing what was in the last budget.

I'm not close to the situation, but I did think they had done something about lowering auto insurance premiums (which I think was a stupid non-priority, but that's just my personal opinion)? Did they backtrack on that too?

 

Rokossovsky

Unionist wrote:

Salutin's article is mostly drivel, IMO, because it tries to situate policies and parties as "left" or "right" or something in between, terms which mean different things to different people. I prefer to look at policies and consider whether they serve the interests of the vast majority of people, or those of the wealthy powerful elite, or neither, or both. And whether those who propose them are sincere, and linked to popular movements, or just self-serving and opportunistic.

For example, sending every hydro user a $100 rebate. Is that "left" or "right"? Or just plain what it looks like (cynical politiciking)?


It does. But not so according to this well known press release runner for the Liberal party who works at TorStar, he seems to believe that Horwath's $100 plan is actually cover for some kind of crazy "revanchist radical leftist" scheme to reconstitute Ontario Hydro as a single publically owned crown corporation.

The Liberal pundits at Torstar seem to be in confusion at how best to skin the Horwath cat, the right "business Liberal", is accusing Horwath of being a naive and unrealistic radical socialist about to "nationalize" power generation, and the "progressive coffee shop and latte's Liberal" seems to be of the opinion she has gone over to the dark side with Rob Ford.

Regardless, Liberals agree, Horwath is bad news, whether it is because she is a silly leftist with notions about the state "capturing the commanding heights of the economy", or goostepping her way to oblivion as far as "polite company" because of so called "right-wing" populist posturing.

Pogo Pogo's picture

From a contradiction anything follow.   The important note is that the Liberals are the ones who pulled the plug and called an election that clearly they were very very prepared for.  If you want to say in this hypotheical world the NDP could have negotiated all their issues, you first have to show that the Liberals had any interest in negotiating.

Unionist

Pogo wrote:

The important note is that the Liberals are the ones who pulled the plug and called an election that clearly they were very very prepared for.

Had Horwath said: "Good start, but it needs work and timelines, and we're prepared to sit down and do what's needed for Ontarians" - there would not conceivably have been an election call. Wynne wouldn't have dared. This way, her excuse was ready-made - two parties holding a majority of seats declaring they'd oppose the budget.

Quote:
If you want to say in this hypotheical world the NDP could have negotiated all their issues, you first have to show that the Liberals had any interest in negotiating.

Um, absolutely totally wrong. I've spent my life in the workplace, and in the union, negotiating with people (employers) who have zero interest in negotiating anything anytime anywhere. They'd prefer a non-union world where "management rights" rule supreme, encumbered only by the few minimum standards and charter rights that exist.

It's the same in politics. The skill comes in creating an "interest" on the part of your enemies, your adversaries, your potential allies. If you can't do that, then you will accomplish nothing in life. Because no two groups or persons have identical interests. Life is about compromise. You are judged by what issues you choose to compromise on, and how far, vs. where you stand firm.

Did you hear the Liberals say they had no interest in negotiating budget items? Source, please. And what did the NDP say? That they would oppose the budget. They handed the advantage to Wynne on a silver platter. They won't even get to keep the platter. And Horwath's stance was utterly, unabashedly, unprincipled - because it was grounded in a miscalculation (probably) of short-term electoral gain rather than actually bringing Ontario out of austerity and inequality.

 

Rokossovsky

Unionist wrote:

Pogo wrote:

The important note is that the Liberals are the ones who pulled the plug and called an election that clearly they were very very prepared for.

Had Horwath said: "Good start, but it needs work and timelines, and we're prepared to sit down and do what's needed for Ontarians" - there would not conceivably have been an election call. Wynne wouldn't have dared. This way, her excuse was ready-made - two parties holding a majority of seats declaring they'd oppose the budget.

Quote:
If you want to say in this hypotheical world the NDP could have negotiated all their issues, you first have to show that the Liberals had any interest in negotiating.

Um, absolutely totally wrong. I've spent my life in the workplace, and in the union, negotiating with people (employers) who have zero interest in negotiating anything anytime anywhere. They'd prefer a non-union world where "management rights" rule supreme, encumbered only by the few minimum standards and charter rights that exist.

It's the same in politics. The skill comes in creating an "interest" on the part of your enemies, your adversaries, your potential allies. If you can't do that, then you will accomplish nothing in life. Because no two groups or persons have identical interests. Life is about compromise. You are judged by what issues you choose to compromise on, and how far, vs. where you stand firm.

Did you hear the Liberals say they had no interest in negotiating budget items? Source, please. And what did the NDP say? That they would oppose the budget. They handed the advantage to Wynne on a silver platter. They won't even get to keep the platter. And Horwath's stance was utterly, unabashedly, unprincipled - because it was grounded in a miscalculation (probably) of short-term electoral gain rather than actually bringing Ontario out of austerity and inequality.

 

Yeah, it might have been handled better. But Horwath was 100% correct in not going to any in camera meetings with the Liberals, where they could be accused of being intractable in behind closed door meetings with Wynne. This was Layton's mistake in 2006. It made it possible for the Liberals to paint a false picture of what had transpired, and mislead people into thinking that Layton was being intransigent for the sake of being intransigent, when in fact he was being adamant on a principle regarding privatization of health care.

I am pretty certain that occassion played heavily in the consideration of how to handle this one.

Even now, Wynne is changing her story about the meetings she held with Harper in December, saying that then that the meeting was "productive", saying now that Harper was intransigent in his opposition to increasing CPP rates. That is a fact.

She was lying then, or lying now.

You seem to be of the opinion that Wynne is an honest broker. She is not. Clearly. And this is the point that Andrea made in her speech, and that point might have been lost had the situation devolved into behind the scenes back and forth.

And your belief that Wynne is an honest broker on this issue is the key to your point about "negotiations", But in fact, it is quite clear that Wynne had no intention of bringing a negotiation to fruition, let alone debating the budget in the legislature, something she definitely could have done, had she wanted to force the issue with the NDP and bring about a negotiated settlement.

That was not in the plan.

Truly, Horwath might have pulled back and tried to force Wynne to table her budget, so it could come under scrutiny for what it is, a sugar coated privatization bomb, but then her point about the failure of the Liberals to deliver might have been lost.

Horwath decided to strike, rather than play patsy. At some point it has to be done, when dealing with management that is playing games.

She showed leadership doing what she did, and you still have to convince me that the political terrain for the NDP, let alone the Liberals would be better in a years time. Horwath quite clearly made the point in her summary letter that she believes that tying herself to the Liberals would not have helped them, and only sullied the NDP further.

On the other side of the coing, that is precisely why Wynne wanted to go now, above and beyond any negotiation.

And anything achieved in this budget would have been blown away like so much fairy dust if Hudak won in 2015.

Rokossovsky

And lest we forget. Andrea did offer a basis of negotiation. She put forward an open letter asking that the Liberals include a "modest" increase in corporate taxes in an open letter.

Kathleen Wynne refused to discuss it and made no statements that anything was negotiable.

Skinny Dipper

Rebecca West wrote:
FYI Skinny Dipper, policy here is that we don't post entire articles, but post a relevant quote with a link. Thanks.

Noted. Smile

Skinny Dipper

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2014/05/08/andrea_horwaths_rightwing_populism_salutin.html

"Andrea Horwath's right-wing populism: Salutin After years of possibly delusional but honourable attempts by the NDP to stay anchored to its social democratic principles, Andrea Horwath marks a change.

Published on Thu May 08 2014 Open policard for MayorRob Ford  Andrea Horwath has led Canada’s NDP into a new era. They’ve floundered over an absence of clear principles for a long time, which has been true of formerly socialist and social democratic parties everywhere. It’s been a hard run, with the zeitgeist firmly in their face. But they maintained a sense that, despite their own behaviour, they still believed they were in the grand old traditions. It may have been delusional but it was an honourable attempt to stay anchored. Horwath marks the change. She’s a right-wing populist, full out.

[Edited by me in attempt to keep within copyright issues]

NorthReport

What is the unemployment rate in Ontario?

What has it been over the past eleven years since the Liberals have been in power?

What is there such silence on this topic here during this election campaign?

Some folks profess to be concerned about the plight of others, the less fortunate, but the silence is deafening about something that directly relates to people's well being?

Is the Ontario government falling down on this important issue?

Just curious.

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2,360

 

 

 

Sineed

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Tim Hudak would cut 100,000 public sector jobs if Tories win Ontario election

Quote:

The Tory leader has already said that teachers will be targeted. He also vowed to eliminate agencies like the Ontario Power Authority, Local Health Integration Networks and the College of Trades.

Those steps would be coupled with a two-year wage freeze for everyone in the broader public sector including politicians, civil servants and anyone else paid by taxpayers.

The number of administrative jobs across government would also be reduced and Hudak would shrink the size of cabinet from 27 to 16 ministers.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-votes-2014/tim-hudak-would...

"He just gave 3 million public sector workers 100,000 reasons to vote against him." Smokey Thomas, president of OPSEU

So he's going to create a million jobs by firing 100,000 people. I guess that's Tory math. And like my husband pointed out, it isn't just the public sector workers who won't vote for Hudak - it's also family members, un- or under-employed by the weak Ontario economy, who rely on the person in the family with the public sector job. (Like my family, for instance.) And if he's firing all these people, who are going to be patronizing the small businesses supposedly magically created by the public sector bloodbath?

Such a move could trigger a massive recession. Even people on the right are saying so.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

NorthReport

Perfect time to have a thorough discussion about Ontario's unemployment rates and how the Ontario government has been doing over the past 11 years, I would think.

 

terrytowel

Sineed wrote:

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

If people are scared of those cuts, is it possible he is hoping for vote splitting between the Liberals and the NDP, so his party can come up the middle?

NorthReport
Rokossovsky

terrytowel wrote:

Sineed wrote:

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

If people are scared of those cuts, is it possible he is hoping for vote splitting between the Liberals and the NDP, so his party can come up the middle?

Yeah. With Hudak throwing the election its going to be tough using fear tactics to drive strategic voting. Once soft Tory voters start bleeding to the Liberals, that will free up some "strategic" space for NDP-Liberal voters to move NDP. Then again, the party of fear can expect even more Tories to start bleeding to them if the NDP gets momentum, and looks like it might govern.

The party of fear relies on strategic voting both ways, NDPrs go to the Liberals when the Tories are strong, and Tories go Liberal when the NDP does well.

You can see this swing in the federal polling, where a lot of left Tories first moved over to Trudeau, when the NDP was strong, but now that the Federal NDP doesn't look so competitive, they are drifting back to Harper.

terrytowel

Election Predictor has updated their page in predictions.

PC - 30 seats

Liberal - 25 seats

NDP - 15 seats

Too close to call - 37 seats

http://www.electionprediction.org/2013_on/index.php

 

Skinny Dipper

terrytowel wrote:

Sineed wrote:

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

If people are scared of those cuts, is it possible he is hoping for vote splitting between the Liberals and the NDP, so his party can come up the middle?

Tim Hudak is probably hoping for a Liberal-NDP vote split.

My prediction is that if the Conservatives poll in the high 30s, I expect non-Conservative voters to gravitate toward the Liberals in order to stop Hudak.  Voters may switch to the NDP only if the Liberals make some major mistakes in the campaign.

If the Conservatives start polling in the high 20s or lower, I think that non-Conservative voters may be safe in supporting either the Liberals or NDP (or Greens).

Pogo Pogo's picture

Unionist wrote:

Um, absolutely totally wrong. I've spent my life in the workplace, and in the union, negotiating with people (employers) who have zero interest in negotiating anything anytime anywhere. They'd prefer a non-union world where "management rights" rule supreme, encumbered only by the few minimum standards and charter rights that exist.

Negotiation is also a core part of my job (part of my pay is based on the deals I negotiate).  I am sure the NDP could have offered a olive branch, but let us assume for a moment that the Liberals were intending to go to call an election as soon as possible.  Negotiations would have provided an opportunity for the Liberals to grab attention and show that the NDP has at least half-hearted support for their plan.  In this light negotiations would achieve nothing except give Liberals extra support.

In negotiations your best deal is often the one you walk away from.

Unionist

Pogo wrote:
Negotiations would have provided an opportunity for the Liberals to grab attention and show that the NDP has at least half-hearted support for their plan.  In this light negotiations would achieve nothing except give Liberals extra support.

Well, that's where we part company.

Several budget elements are not only positive in and of themselves - they are NDP policies (like the Ontario Retirement Plan). The ONDP should simply have hailed these budget items, pledged support for them, conditional on the Liberals not being habitual chronic liars as before. To worry about the Liberals grabbing attention - or being able to say the NDP had half-hearted support for their plan - is the worry of those who put party labels ahead of the interests of the people.

You said you're a negotiator. You never commented on my point (in opposition to yours) that negotiations has nothing to do with whether anyone is "interested" in getting a deal. You have to get a deal regardless - or if not, you ensure that whoever walks away, you retain the advantage.

Horwath said she'd oppose the budget. She didn't say which parts. That showed her true interest. This is not a compliment.

 

 

Rokossovsky

I think there are some red faces at the OFL. Syd Ryan in particular calling out a line without doing a round of phone calls to OPSEU, Steel and ATU113 clearly don't support the budget, and allowing Unifor to use brinskmanship to force support for the Liberals and expecting everyone to fall into line, without properly assessing the feeling in the room.

OSSTF also issued a release that was decidedly negative. ETFO was more diplomatic, but essentially did not call it either way.

To bad, I think Syd has to go, even though I always thought he had a principled position on Palestine. Think he is done at OFL.

Very bad creating a split like this.

Pogo Pogo's picture

My point was the act of negotiation in themselves was to the advantage to the Liberals as it gave credibility to their program in general.

Rokossovsky

It was.

And it is clear that Horwath wanted everything "negotiated" in the public domain, where it could not be misrepresented. She made a clear demand that corporate taxes be raised to cover the cost of transit infrastructure expansion, instead of further privatization, or transfer of monies designated to other priorities.

That letter met with complete silence from the Liberals, who made no signal that they would be amenable to that. Had they agreed to a corporate tax increase, it is clear negotiation would be a go.

The Liberals spurned that effort on Horwath's part. Obviously increasing corporate taxes is a no go.

Brachina

http://democraticvotingcanada.blogspot.ca/2014/05/rick-salutins-hatchet-...

 

 Some intelligent thought on Rick Salutin's article, which I 100% agree with.

 

 Rick sold out to the star, which honestly has declared war against the Ontario NDP this election.

 

 I'm used to newspapers being biased against the NDP, but this time the star isn't just biased, its declared war against the ONDP and it all hands on deck for it. They're gunning for Andrea Horwath.

 See they got a taste for power when they went gunning for Rob Ford and basically destroyed his political career, and now they're trying to do the same thing to Andrea.

 And no I don't like Rob Ford, he's the worst thing to happen to Toronto, and a national embarrassment, but the honest truth is the star went gunning for Rob Ford in the hopes of destroying him, all hands on deck, beyond what can be concidered ethical journalism. And while I won't mourn Rob Ford's career, Olivia Chow while be a much better Mayor, they're trying to do the same thing to Andrea and that I have problem with.

 Thankfully she's no Rob Ford, so it won't work, they're more likely to alienate a fair sized chunk of thier readership instead.

Rokossovsky

Brachina wrote:

http://democraticvotingcanada.blogspot.ca/2014/05/rick-salutins-hatchet-...

 

 Some intelligent thought on Rick Salutin's article, which I 100% agree with.

 

 Rick sold out to the star, which honestly has declared war against the Ontario NDP this election.

 

 I'm used to newspapers being biased against the NDP, but this time the star isn't just biased, its declared war against the ONDP and it all hands on deck for it. They're gunning for Andrea Horwath.

See they got a taste for power when they went gunning for Rob Ford and basically destroyed his political career, and now they're trying to do the same thing to Andrea.

 And no I don't like Rob Ford, he's the worst thing to happen to Toronto, and a national embarrassment, but the honest truth is the star went gunning for Rob Ford in the hopes of destroying him, all hands on deck, beyond what can be considered ethical journalism. And while I won't mourn Rob Ford's career, Olivia Chow while be a much better Mayor, they're trying to do the same thing to Andrea and that I have problem with.

 Thankfully she's no Rob Ford, so it won't work, they're more likely to alienate a fair sized chunk of their readership instead.

I can't agree with that. The star didn't destroy Rob Ford's career. He did that to himself. However, their hysterical take on this election is very similar to the hysteria they deployed against Ford in the election which he won against Smitherman. At that time, only the tip of the iceberg of Ford's crazy personality was known, and they unsuccessfully tried to drive strategic voting toward Smitherman in their, so called "anybody but Ford" campaign.

Anybody being "their guy" George Smitherman.

It didn't work. In fact the Star's relentless attack against Ford may even have bouyed Ford's support.

But the overall Liberal strategy of attacking Miller from the right in order to pave the way for Smitherman backfired, because they incidentally created the case for Miller's removal as a "tax and spend" socialist, and created the political atmosphere that there was something tremendously wrong at City Hall, when in fact there wasn't.

Ford took advantage of that, and hysteria campaign only made it impossible for voters to rise above the Liberal "wedge" politics of the difference between Smitherman and Ford's personality, effectivel drowning out any discussion of policy, or left wing discourse.

Salutin's article is entirely that. Aesthetics and personality politics.

Horwath... Mussolini seperated at birth... yeah... right.

 

Wilf Day

Pogo wrote:
I am sure the NDP could have offered a olive branch, but let us assume for a moment that the Liberals were intending to go to call an election as soon as possible.  Negotiations would have provided an opportunity for the Liberals to grab attention and show that the NDP has at least half-hearted support for their plan.

Your assumption is correct, but the media have missed it.

The minority Liberal government has done nothing about new electoral boundaries. The current ridings are the same as the federal ridings based on the 2001 census, except in the North where they are still based on the 1991 census, giving the North an extra MPP compared with the federal MPs. But the 2015 federal election will be for an extra 15 Ontario MPs. On the votes cast in the 2011 federal election, the 15 additional MPs would be 11 Conservatives, two New Democrats and two Liberals.

Kathleen Wynne and Andrea Horwath both needed the election to be held this year, or the failure to have new boundaries would have become an obvious gerrymander. So it was either this fall, in the middle of municipal elections in every Ontario municipality (now held only every four years) or this spring. Insiders all knew it was going to be this spring.

Andrea Horwath would have voted non-confidence before the budget, but Ontario’s rules (for some weird reason) did not allow this. So we have an election on, ostensibly, the Liberal platform/budget.

The NDP is left having to change the channel. Oddly, Hudak and Wynne are now helping!

Rokossovsky

Finally, some intelligent discussion points, other than "Andrea Horwath wears jack boots".

With that in mind we can conclusively say. Yes, something would happen in between now, and the next election that would certainly move the Tories into majority territory. The election was absolutely necessary to reduce Hudak's chances.

Brachina

 Comparing Andrea Horwath to Thacher, Mike Harris, Mitt Romney (who in his run for President of America was to the right to Stephen Harper), and so on is the most offensive tripe I'me ever read in the star. Even Thomas Walkom, who regularly seems to accuse the NDP of being the new liberal party, and is very critical of the NDP, never crossed that line.

Rokossovsky

It all went sour between Salutin and the NDP when the free latte's stopped flowing at Rosario's brother's restaurant after it closed.

Brachina

Yeah Wynn's obsession with Stephen Harper is just biazzare and unproductive. Someone needs to remind her he's not running in this election. I can't stand him either, but you can't base your election campaign on fighting the Prime Minister in Ontario. It reminds me how she tried to shadow box with Mulcair during the Kitchener Waterloo bi election over national unity. Dumb, dumb, dumb. It worked out well for her, not.

Tim Hudak, I still mantain is a closet agent of the NDP, a Trojan Horse whose purpose is to sabotage the PCs chances of being government, and his latest debuckle, a million jobs, minus a 100,000, not to mention the other fuckups so far, has me convinced I'm right. These are not accidental fucks ups there delibrate.

Or maybe he's just a fuck up ;p

Andrea Horwath appears so far to be having the best campaign so far.
.

Rokossovsky

Brachina wrote:

Yeah Wynn's obsession with Stephen Harper is just biazzare and unproductive. Someone needs to remind her he's not running in this election. I can't stand him either, but you can't base your election campaign on fighting the Prime Minister in Ontario.

Wedge politics. She doesn't want anyone to find out that her budget is a sugar-coated privatization bomb. I didn't vote for Rosario last time out, maybe this time I will have to.

:(

Rokossovsky

It's kind of sad that we have gone from people continuing to gripe about those foolish posters that came out four years ago, and which thankfully never made the cut, to completely ad hominem smear jobs of the kind Salutin is making.

The posters, suggest something about the NDP, but more likely than not they were a "trial balloon" marketing scheme, and not really worth continued attention 4 years later. I am glad they didn't go down that route. There comes a time when focussing on aesthetic trivialization just become more trivial aesthetics, and we should move on.

I always thought those posters were just something that some friend of the family made up, and a bad idea. But let's talk some policy, here. We owe it to ourselves.

Obviously there are some problems with the marketing pitch of the ONDP, but that doesn't make them "less progressive' than the Liberals by any stretch.

This Liberal budget is a real trojan horse. The real question about the NDP is if it will live up to its promise. And that is doubtful.

NorthReport

Is this yet another Liberal scandal?

Just askin'

http://www.ckwstv.com/2014/05/09/ndp-lodges-complaint-against-liberals/

NorthReport

"Staggering debt"

These Ontario Liberals are sounding more and more like the "Keystone Kops".

Ex-Liberal finance minister warned his party that deep spending cuts are needed to balance Ontario budget

It didn’t escape notice that his warning was akin to a Kardashian tut-tutting someone about overexposure: Ontario’s debt rose from $154-billion to $281-billion during Mr. Duncan’s own time as Finance Minister. But he had warned about debt issues, he said, before he left office.

That much is true. Seemingly emboldened by the fact that it wasn’t his problem to solve anymore, Mr. Duncan went on an anti-debt crusade in his last months at the legislature. Given the province’s debt levels, he said in January, 2013, low interest rates were a “ticking time bomb.” He warned contenders for the Liberal leadership that spending cuts would have to be doubled if the government was still going to reach a balanced budget by 2017-18.

http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/05/09/even-an-ex-liberal-finance-minis...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keystone_Cops

JKR

NorthReport wrote:
Perfect time to have a thorough discussion about Ontario's unemployment rates and how the Ontario government has been doing over the past 11 years, I would think.

So what do you think Ontario governments should have done in the past to spur employment growth and more importantly what are your ideas on what economic policies the Ontario government should establish in the future to further employment growth in Ontario?

There are a few optons the Ontario government has to spur employment. They could increase government spending on things such as infrastructure but that would increase their already large deficits and debt. They could also cut taxes which would also increase their deficits and debt. 

I think Ontario's biggest problem by far is that the federal government is taking tens of billions more out of the province each year than they put in. The federal government's biased support for the oil and gas industry has also caused inflation in the Canadian dollar that has also significantly hurt Ontario. Mulcair was correct when he said that Canada's version of Dutch desease is weakening Canada's economy outside of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland.

No matter what party wins the Ontario election, the next Ontario government will be saddled with a federal government that favours resource extraction industries that predominate in Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland. The currrent federal government has set up a system whereby provinces depend on resource extraction to keep their economies healthy. So developing the "ring of fire" is probably one of the best ways for Ontario to grow their economy given the straightjacket the federal government has put many of the provinces into.

Federal Underfunding of Ontarians: Government of Ontario: Ministry of Finance

Quote:
Not only do imbalances exist between the federal government and provinces, but inequitable federal programs and policies also cause imbalances between Ontarians and Canadians in other provinces. According to the Mowat Centre, the people of Ontario contributed $11 billion more to the federal government than they received in return in 2009–10 (the year with the latest available data). This represents about $850 per Ontarian.

Ontario’s Net Contribution to the Federation in 2009–10:

This chart shows that in 2009–10, Ontarians contributed $97.3 billion to the federal government while receiving $86.2 billion in federal transfers and services. The gap between Ontario’s contribution to the federal government and benefit from federal transfers and services is $11 billion or 1.9 per cent of GDP.

Quote:
“Ontarians transfer approximately $11B on net to the rest of Canada. This transfer is equivalent to 1.9% of the province’s GDP. This can be referred to as the gap between what Ontarians contribute to the federal government and what is returned to the province in the form of transfers and spending.”

Noah Zon, “Filling the Gap: Measuring Ontario’s Balance with the Federation,” Mowat Centre, (2013).

 

mark_alfred

Rokossovsky wrote:

Brachina wrote:

Yeah Wynn's obsession with Stephen Harper is just biazzare and unproductive. Someone needs to remind her he's not running in this election. I can't stand him either, but you can't base your election campaign on fighting the Prime Minister in Ontario.

Wedge politics. She doesn't want anyone to find out that her budget is a sugar-coated privatization bomb. I didn't vote for Rosario last time out, maybe this time I will have to.

:(

Trinity Spadina was a close call last time for the NDP.  If they hadn't of won it, then we could have been stuck with a Liberal majority.  Meaning, the Liberals would have went full out in their desire to follow the Drummond Report and freeze social assistance, impose flat taxes and user fees while lowering corporate taxes and ignoring progressive taxation.  It's the NDP that caused them to not as vigorously follow this path and alter some of the Lib's plans. 

I proudly voted for Marchese last time.  Now I'm in Mike Colle's riding, but I'll still vote NDP.

NorthReport

Here are actual election results as opposed to some of the ridiculous polling that is presently going on

More significant that the statistical chart at the end is what has happened since the last election until May 2/14, and those stats are very revealing indeed:

Liberals had 53 seats, Down 5 seats to only 48 seats, Down 9% of their seats

PCs at 37 seats, have not changed their seat count

NDP had 17 seats, Up 4 seats, to 21 seats, Up 24% of their seats  

The trend is unmistakably clear that it is the NDP that has had, and currently has the momentum.

Andrea Horwath and the Ontario NDP can win this election.

 

Seats in the Legislature

PARTY  / 2003 / 2007 / 2011 / NOW

Libs / 72 / 71 / 53 / 48 - Down 24 seats, Down 33% of their seats  

PCs / 24 / 26 / 37 / 37 - Up 13 seats or Up 54% of their seats

NDP / 7 / 10 / 21 / 17 / 21 - Up 14 seats, Up 200% of their seats

 

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Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Rokossovsky wrote:
It's kind of sad that we have gone from people continuing to gripe about those foolish posters that came out four years ago, and which thankfully never made the cut, to completely ad hominem smear jobs of the kind Salutin is making.

The criticisms of those trial posters were that they ignored the NDP's long standing commitment to feminist principles and espoused a political aesthetics rather than actual political policies that would change the direction of the province. They were ad glossies rather than platform. They may have been ultimately rejected (if that's the case, their rejection owes no small part to the backlash the trials received), but at virtually every step of Horwath's tenure, she and her team have used exactly the same approach as the one epitomized by those posters. From her orange high heel shoe logo to crowing about a most-shared social media image (!) to, of course, her schizophrenic criticisms of the Wynne budget and her oft-evinced hame that the ONDP enjoys labour support.

So if you think the posters are just a sad gripe, I guess you'll never understand they are occasionally referenced, or why not everyone who cares about actually improving the lives of people are not falling over themselves in excitment over Horwath's depressing campaign.

NorthReport

Overall what is actually depressing is that the differences between campaigning during an election campaign, and actual policies, are given short shrift, as if there is little understanding that winning government is the most effective route to creating that better society which we all profess to care about.

Andrea is definitely is on the correct tack here, doing her job, which is to try and win the election, against, what I may add, are the almost insurmountable odds, of taking on the status quo strength of the rich and powerful, who control all the mainstream press, and most of the other closely followed political websites and blogs in Ontario.

 

NorthReport
NorthReport

Wynne, at this point, probably running to hold on to at least third place, took the day off.

If that's not an indication of a political party in crisis I don't what is.

And if anyone wants confirmation that the Liberals are in crisis, and  specifically in crisis over Andrea's energizing and effective campaign, feast your eyes on a new Liberal ad actually using Wynne in the attack ad.  Laughing

Meanwhile the PCs, the current front runner, are sailing on straight ahead. 

Confusion in the Liberal ranks, you think.

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Rokossovsky

It is my considered opinion that Syd Ryan jumped the shark and the "strategic" reality is that if the only issue of concern for labour is the fact that Tim Hudak might form the next government, it is time to unhitch themselves from the Liberal albatros, and 100% support the NDP.

The Liberals, regardless of any policy distinctions that may or may not be evident between them and the NDP, are seriously wounded in the credibility department and a large number of voters are very turned off. What this means is that the "hold your nose and vote Liberal" crowd are going to have very little insentive to get to the polls. I think that outside of Toronto the Liberal rank and file are demoralized, and organizationally weak.

On the other hand Conservatives are going to be very motivated now that Hudak has promised to fire a whole bunch of bad guys.

There is a big difference between voter "preference" in opinion polls, and motivated voters.

Support from rank and file teachers for one is going to be very weak indeed. Negative votes "Anybody but" campaigns are not inspiring. The Liberals might tread water, but as likely as not they are going down, not up.

The only non-Hudak party with real potential for growth and momentum is the NDP. So. There is no point in playing guessing games with polling statistics, and it is far better to commit to supporting the NDP in an effort to give them a push over the top.

It's labour, so not much chance of this, but this would be a truly inspired strategic decision. Otherwise, I think Liberals are going down and the Conservatives are getting a minority.

NorthReport

Let's see, the Liberals have been in power for 11 years now in Ontario, Canada's most populous province, so what role do the Liberals have in perpetuating this?

Increasing inequality and the rise of a super-rich in Canada

Meanwhile, an immensely rich and powerful class right here in Canada is quietly amassing ever greater wealth and power to hand down to their heirs, who will be still richer and more powerful. But, go Habs, go! Why would we care? 

http://rabble.ca/columnists/2014/05/increasing-inequality-and-rise-super...

josh

terrytowel wrote:

Sineed wrote:

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

If people are scared of those cuts, is it possible he is hoping for vote splitting between the Liberals and the NDP, so his party can come up the middle?

That's precisely what he's hoping. Although since both he and Howarth both like talking about "job creators" there may be some confusion. The man is a clear and present danger. I hope the voters won't let him succeed with this strategy.

NorthReport
Rokossovsky

Catchfire wrote:

Rokossovsky wrote:
It's kind of sad that we have gone from people continuing to gripe about those foolish posters that came out four years ago, and which thankfully never made the cut, to completely ad hominem smear jobs of the kind Salutin is making.

The criticisms of those trial posters were that they ignored the NDP's long standing commitment to feminist principles and espoused a political aesthetics rather than actual political policies that would change the direction of the province. They were ad glossies rather than platform. They may have been ultimately rejected (if that's the case, their rejection owes no small part to the backlash the trials received), but at virtually every step of Horwath's tenure, she and her team have used exactly the same approach as the one epitomized by those posters. From her orange high heel shoe logo to crowing about a most-shared social media image (!) to, of course, her schizophrenic criticisms of the Wynne budget and her oft-evinced hame that the ONDP enjoys labour support.

So if you think the posters are just a sad gripe, I guess you'll never understand they are occasionally referenced, or why not everyone who cares about actually improving the lives of people are not falling over themselves in excitment over Horwath's depressing campaign.

I do not find Ms. Horwath's opinions, or statements on policy on small business or "rewarding the job" creators at all out of keeping with the general line presented by Olivia Chow, the prospetive mayor of Toronto. However, she generally gets a pass from the self-same folks who are now repeatedly trashing Horwath for being right wing.

For example, this:

Olivia Chow wrote:
“Small businesses are essential to create jobs in our city. And as your new mayor, I will not spend my time in Hollywood being a celebrity. I’ll respond to entrepreneurs to help them get started and cut taxes to help them grow,” said Olivia. “My investment in creating jobs can be afforded by reasonable property taxes, which rise around the rate of inflation.

I don't really understand the criticism on policy, here. I don't see how that bragging about most hits on an photo ties in. It evidences popularity.

To me the reliance on these "unreleased" four year old images as being overwhelmingly important in terms of discerning her political intent only signals a lack of real criticism on points of policy over the last 4 years. If, as you say, the backlash succeeded in preventing the idea from taking off that is great. Why beat the dead horse, when you win?

More substantively, you say that the ONDP has no claim to "labour" support. Actually, that claim is quite well established. Indeed, the "Labour Council's" routinely endorse ALL ONDP incumbents. All of them.

OPSEU and Steelworkers supported her view on the budget, and her decision. Unions that expressed "no opinion" on the decision to oppose the budget, such as OSSTF, and ETFO, had these things to say about the Wynne budget, much in line with the NDP position:

ETFO:

sam hammond wrote:
While the government will introduce a new tax rate for the top two percent of earners, there is virtually no change to the province’s corporate tax rate, one of the lowest in North America. Economic studies continue to show that such measures are not creating jobs.

OSSTF:

Austerity alive and well for education in Ontario wrote:
“Our members have more than done their part,” said Elliott, “but this government persists in treating public education workers in Ontario as easy targets for an agenda of restraint that even the government itself is no longer comfortable acknowledging.”

And again, the OFL and the Labour Council's always supports ALL ONDP incumbents. To me that sounds like a fair amount of "Labour support".

I am not exactly clear what was "schizophrenic" about Horwath's position on the budget. She sent a letter declaring that for the budget to get NDP support the Liberals would have to make a shift on the issue of corporate taxes, in order to fund transit infrastructure building, without "privatizing" it. (See ATU113 campaign against TTC privatization, here.) A position on corporate taxes echoed by Sam Hammond of ETFO, above.

Wynne failed to respond to this offer, and she announced she would not be supporting the budget, which as OPSEU observes is basically what I call a sugar-coated privatization bomb:

OPSEU wrote:
In the Budget, these changes would have been paid for in three main ways: through small tax increases, big spending cuts, and significant asset sales and privatization.

[emphasis is theirs]

And finally this on the rank and file position: care to tell me exactly how many "labour activists" actually run on the Liberal ticket? Well, there is OSSTF president Ken Coran of course who ran as a Liberal, only to be met with teachers in his own union actively campaigning against him.

Quote:
Ken Coran’s campaign to win London West for the Ontario Liberals is getting a thumbs up from local teachers, at least officially.

But it’s a different story at the grassroots, where teachers took to Facebook and Twitter to vent their frustration after high school teachers from the Thames Valley District school board received emails from their union urging them to support Coran in the Aug. 1 byelection.

I'll throw this idea out there. Were it not for the lurking presence of Tim Hudak, then the entire union movement in Ontario would have resoundingly denounced the Liberal budget, and endorsed the NDP. Labour in Ontario supports both the NDP and the Liberals in opposition to Tim Hudak. That is their position.

I don't know where you are getting your information from. But it is faulty.

What is schizophrenic? I really don't get that. What do you mean? She was pretty clear in her press conference, I thought.

She doesn't trust the Liberals to deliver.

In her follow up letter, she stated that it was her opinion that the prospects for a Progressive Conservative victory would only get better of the next year under Liberal management, and supporting the LIberals would not benefit the NDP either. There is a great case for this, given that with seat redistribution in the next election, the Tories would have 10 more seats than they have now, whereas the Liberals and the NDP would only gain four, based on the past election results.

And no, Andrea Horwath is not going to "change the direction of the province". At best she might stop the bleeding.

NorthReport

The Liberals seem to oftens run a fear-based campaign as opposed to one full of change and hope.

I don't believe in voting out of fear, I believe in voting for the party which best represents my interests.

According to Ipsos-Reid, the NDP are gaining fast on the Liberals, now with only a small three point gap beteeen them. The NDP has the momentum, and may well pull even, or surpass the Liberals soon, so if folks are really so concerned about Hudak, doesn't it make sense to support the one party that can stop him, the Andrea horwath-led NDP? 

josh wrote:
terrytowel wrote:

Sineed wrote:

Okay, so Hudak has just lost the election.

Thank you, Tim Hudak! I mean that.

If people are scared of those cuts, is it possible he is hoping for vote splitting between the Liberals and the NDP, so his party can come up the middle?

That's precisely what he's hoping. Although since both he and Howarth both like talking about "job creators" there may be some confusion. The man is a clear and present danger. I hope the voters won't let him succeed with this strategy.

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