Canada federal election October 21, 2019 part 2

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NorthReport
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Trudeau Enters Election Year Weakened and Tarnished. He’ll Still Win

The Liberals have done plenty in four years. It’s what they haven’t done that will hurt them.

The voter turnout will be lower, and when the dust settles, Justin Trudeau will still be prime minister, though probably at the head of a minority government; Andrew Scheer will still be Opposition leader with a few more MPs, and the NDP will be planning another leadership convention.

https://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2019/01/23/Trudeau-Election-Year/

pietro_bcc

I think pundits are strongly underestimating the support that The Peoples Party will get. If they even manage to get 5% which is definitely possible, not only will the Liberals win they'll increase their seat count.

Pundits mock certain PPC policies like no action on climate change, but if you actually listen to Conservative voters, that's what they want. You look at the riding poll is Burnaby and what are they polling at 9%?

NorthReport

'No new oil and gas,' says NDP candidate Svend Robinson

 

https://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/no-new-oil-and-gas-says-ndp-candidate-sv...

NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport
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NorthReport

I'm not a big Trudeau fan but these sick freaks need to be shutdown permanently. Please remind me to never ever go to Virden, Manitoba

Mayor Apologizes for Wanting to Sodomize Justin Trudeau With Pipeline ‘Pig’

Virden, Manitoba Mayor Murray Wright told a Yellow Vest rally that he wanted to duct tape the prime minister onto the front of a pipeline and send a pig up his ass.

https://www.vice.com/en_ca/article/mbze4q/mayor-apologizes-for-wanting-t...

NorthReport

Liberal MP Nicola Di Iorio resigns Montreal seat

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/nicola-di-iorio-resigns-1.4997514

bekayne
Ken Burch Ken Burch's picture

NorthReport wrote:

Liberal MP Nicola Di Iorio resigns Montreal seat

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/nicola-di-iorio-resigns-1.4997514

He was going to resign last spring, but walked that back.  He delayed it long enough that they don't have to have a by-election to fill the seat.

bekayne

Ken Burch wrote:

NorthReport wrote:

Liberal MP Nicola Di Iorio resigns Montreal seat

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/nicola-di-iorio-resigns-1.4997514

He was going to resign last spring, but walked that back.  He delayed it long enough that they don't have to have a by-election to fill the seat.

Then again it's Saint-Léonard—Saint-Michel

NDPP

NDP Big Brother and Election Protector Nathan Cullen: (podcast)

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/asithappens/as-it-happens-wednesday-edition-1.4...

"The Liberals say a committee of bureaucrats will warn Canadians of hackers trying to interfere in this fall's election - but an NDP MP warns that those bureaucrats are vulnerable to political hacks."

Part 1

There is too much bs in this to even begin to deconstruct, starting with the fact that the DNC emails were leaked not hacked by Russians. We know this because ex UK Ambassador Craig Murray testified he restrieved them from a disgruntled DNC insider, disgusted with  Clinton's sabotage of  Bernie Sanders.  As well it appears the NDP has no problem supporting the intelligence apparatus  involvement in the election process, again likely taking their cue from the ascendancy of the CIA-FBI, Mueller etc. Let's ramp that xenophobia and manufacture consent for a  Five Eyes police state response even higher shall we? The real 'hacks' we need to fear are those 'representing' us in Ottawa.

NDP=NoDifferenceParty

NorthReport

‘Fingers in All Pots’: Canada’s Reckoning with China

The Meng Affair as a six-act opera starring Trudeau and the fate of nations.

 

meng.jpg

Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou, whose arrest in Vancouver has sparked a drama exposing global fault lines and undercutting Justin Trudeau’s trade dreams. Photo source: Huawei handout.

Act one: the stakes

ANNOUNCEMENTS, EVENTS & MORE FROM TYEE AND SELECT PARTNERS

Every now and then a grand political opera erupts on the global stage that illuminates the corrupt order of things. The Meng Affair does just that, and more. How does a middle power like Canada occupy centre stage in the drama? Perhaps because arrogant empires view such “frightened birds” as ripe pickings.

Caught between the conceits of a declining American empire and the ambitions of a meddling superpower ruled by the Communist Party of China, Trudeau has fumbled badly. He must now find some courage.

For years now Canada’s politicians of all stripes and much of the nation’s business class and media have actively diminished our sovereignty by cultivating the illusion that increased trade with a ruthless one-party state will bring prosperity to all.

And for years now the Communist Party of China has done its best to cooptCanadian academics, entrepreneurs and politicians to champion China’s global ambitions in the media and Canadian universities as some kind of marvelous “win-win cooperation,” as the China Daily puts it.

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“The empty vanity” of this stance, says Jonathan Manthorpe, journalist and author of Claws of the Panda, has been rudely exposed by the kidnapping of two Canadians and ugly threats made by the Chinese government.

A panda has treed a grizzly bear.

Will the bear fight or climb higher up the tree?

Act two: the players

The imperial tale now unfolding comes with a colourful cast of colonial and corporate characters.

Under house arrest sits Huawei’s chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou, in one of her two immodest Vancouver homes worth a total of $22 million. She is a bonafide member of China’s corporate royalty.

Meng awaits an extradition hearing that could send her to the United States on alleged charges of bank fraud and violation of U.S. sanctions against Iran. The charges come from the U.S. Justice Department and not Donald Trump.

Tellingly, Vancouver makes a perfect setting for Meng’s detention. The city represents to the Communist Party of China what Shanghai once was for European imperialists — a place to show off their money and power. So many Chinese opioid cartels and other global gangsters wash their dirty money there that an Australian security expert describes it as “a hub of transnational money laundering.”

Next comes John McCallum, Canada’s super friendly ambassador to China, who reluctantly got fired after defending China’s elites. Only the Chinese state media has expressed outrage at his removal.

Trudeau, certainly a key character in this opera, once said of China that he admired a “basic dictatorship” that could turn its economy around on a dime. More importantly, he banked his administration’s political fortunes on the obsequious promotion of more trade (including energy pipelines) with imperial China as a counterweight to waning U.S. interest in global affairs.

Now he sees those hopes dying faster than a pod of southern resident orcas in the Juan de Fuca Strait.

In contrast Donald Trump, a revolutionary billionaire president with a penchant for porn stars, recognizes China’s play for global dominance as one fraught with hazards. His strategy consists largely of imposing tariffs and sanctions to slow the fragile monster down while playing nice with China’s ally, Vladimir Putin.

Now add the tech giant Huawei. It is China’s largest private firm with annual revenues of $100 billion a year. Even Telus and BCE use Huawei products.

But the company’s 5G technology, a bit of digital wizardry that makes it possible for smart machines to connect with other machines, has got security experts worried.

Countries such as the U.S., Australia and New Zealand, who, unlike Canada, have aggressively countered Chinese interference in their politics, are convinced that the Communist party will use a backdoor in Huawei’s 5G technology to spy on western governments. (For the record, 5G tech will make it easier for any government to control and spy on its citizens.)

Last but not least comes President Xi Jinping, whose ministry of state security now holds two Canadians hostages in retaliation for Canada’s attempt to uphold the rule of law.

Xi Jinping calls himself “president for life” and has strengthened the Chinese state as an authoritarian Big Brother complete with Internet censorship and almost total surveillance of its citizens.

After Trump threw away the throne of globalization, Xi rebranded it as Globalization 2 and promised all roads would now lead to Beijing.

To advance this new Chinese-centric economic order, Xi’s regime works to extend influence through the 10 million People’s Republic of China citizens living abroad. As part of that program, Xi Jinping passed in 2017 the National Intelligence Law, which it made legal for Communist party officials to demand cooperation from Chinese companies and their communication networks as well as citizens living abroad. In other words any Chinese firm or any citizen can act as a spy for the party in the interests of “national security.”

Act three: the crisis

The economic stage upon which this rowdy drama is unfolding is decadent, angry and fragile.

Ordinary people know that globalization is failing, but Western political leaders like Trudeau and Emmanuel Macron pretend the deep faults can be mended by making the rich richer with more trade as long as you add the adjective “progressive.”

The facts, however, speak a different language. Wages are stagnant and great segments of industrial society perform meaningless work. Impoverishment is common. Conflict between elites in western democracies is escalating as globalists square off with nationalists.

Because political parties now behave like clueless cartels, populism has become “the new normal.” Tech monopolies and digital barons have willfully destabilized democracies and strengthened tyrants to grow richer yet.

Meanwhile economic inequality, a cancer for any civilization, accelerates while the world’s reigning billionaires largely operate in denial about the threats of climate change and the risks posed by the declining quality of energy fueling capitalism.

The brilliant Scottish political economist Mark Blyth calls it a crisis like no other: “This is the [most] serious challenge that capitalism as a model has faced since its inception.”

Act four: the grand illusion

851px version of TrudeauChineseBusinessLeaders.jpg

Making dumplings, collecting donations: In 2016, The Tyee helped expose Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s private fundraisers with wealthy Chinese business people — some with ties to the Communist Party. Photo from Dawa News.

Now enter Trudeau and his government of sunny ways.

One of his first acts as PM was to resurrect the idea of negotiating a bilateral agreement with the world’s second largest economy China — an idea the Harper government had shelved.

Trudeau, as neoliberals do, boasted that more trade would “foster an innovative, invigorated, interconnected and inclusive world economy.”

At the same time, as The Tyee led in exposing, Trudeau merrily conducted private fundraisers with wealthy Chinese business people — some with ties to the Communist party, in private homes.

In 2016, high-ranking Chinese officials told Trudeau they might be interested in such a deal, but only if Canada removed investment restrictions on energy projects and built an energy pipeline to the coast.

While courting the world’s new imperial masters, Trudeau politely told a Davos audience that “globalization isn’t working for ordinary people.” But he said hiring and promoting more women in the workforce might fix the whole thing.

A year later Trudeau told Canadian businesses that they must now embrace globalization and make their fortunes in China. He did so during a fireside chat with Alibaba’s chief executive Jack Ma, the richest man in China.

To get the job done Trudeau appointed John McCallum, a trusted Liberal bagman and former banker, as Canada’s ambassador to China. One of Xi’s global goals is to “make the foreign serve China.” Upon his arrival in China, McCallum told the Toronto Star without a hint of irony, “My slogan is more, more, more. We want to do more trade, more investment, more tourists.”

McCallum also threw roses at China with this statement: “In some important policy areas such as the environment, global warming, free trade, globalization, the policies of the government of Canada are closer to the policies of the government of China than they are to U.S. policies.” Really?

Meanwhile a big China debate erupted in Australia as a series of investigative reports detailed how thoroughly the Communist Party of China was infiltrating and undermining Australian politics. While spies and operatives tried to control Australia’s Chinese community, Chinese billionaires openly funded political parties.

Americans took notice of the furor in Australia while the Canadian government ignored the growing evidence of rank imperialism and continued its trade dance.

But then a new threat to a trade deal emerged in spring 2018.

That’s when a highly indebted Kinder Morgan threatened to pull the plug on the uneconomic expansion of Trans Mountain pipeline. Publicly the Texas firm blamed protestors, but privately, experts concluded, it couldn’t raise the money to fund the mega-project.

No matter. Trudeau’s government stepped in and bought the 65-year-old pipeline because no other investors would touch it. Trudeau claimed it was in the national interest and that the Chinese would pay higher prices for heavy oil. Economist Jeff Rubin describes that claim as complete fiction, because the U.S. Gulf Coast refineries remain the largest market for heavy crude.

But the best explanation for the gross overpayment of a private pipeline by the government remains this: Trudeau needed to meet a pivotal Chinese condition on closing any free trade deal as stipulated by Chinese officials in 2016. It might also explain why the National Energy Board never did a proper study on the projects economic risks and benefits.

Act five: the reckoning

On Dec. 1, Canadian authorities detained Meng Wanzhou at the Vancouver airport, and the Meng Affair began in earnest.

Calling the arrest “unreasonable, unconscionable and vile in nature,” Chinese officials threatened consequences and then delivered the same way the British Empire once did with gunboats on the Yangtze River. By kidnapping and jailing two Canadians, including former diplomat Michael Korvig, President Xi’s government revealed the tyrannical face behind Globalization 2. Xi’s government also changed a 15-year sentence for a Canadian drug trafficker to a sentence of death.

Trudeau called the actions “unacceptable.”

He promised not to interfere in the extradition hearings, and thereby uphold the rule of law.

But then McCallum, presumably on orders from Ottawa, delivered a different message to the Chinese-language media in Toronto — a message that would have assuaged Chinese authorities. McCallum said Meng had a “strong argument” to fight her extradition case against the U.S. because of comments made by Trump. He also suggested her extradition “would not be a happy outcome.”

Wouldn’t it be “great” if the U.S. and China would settle their trade dispute and forget about the extradition, he added two days later.

After those remarks generally outraged Canadians, McCallum later apologized and said he “misspoke.” Incredibly the ambassador also characterized the hostage taking in response to Meng’s arrest as nothing more than “a big hiccup” in the golden age of Chinese and Canadian relations.

Several days later Trudeau fired McCallum with no explanation.

After Meng’s arrest, Nebraskan Senator Ben Sasse, who “thinks every day about leaving the Republican Party,” said what Canadian authorities have not: “Sometimes Chinese aggression is explicitly state-sponsored and sometimes it’s laundered through many of Beijing’s so-called ‘private’ sector entities that are in bed with Xi’s communist party.”

Act six: fingers in all pots

Earlier this year Canada’s Security Intelligence Service released an important report on Chinese state influence in New Zealand. “Fingers in All Pots: The Threat of Foreign Interference in Democratic Systems” makes grim reading.

Based on an influential 2017 paper that rattled New Zealand politics, it found that the Communist Party of China had pursued an aggressive campaign “to influence political decision-making, pursue unfair advantages in trade and business, suppress criticism of China, facilitate espionage opportunities, and influence overseas Chinese communities.”

The report, a must read for Canadians, found nothing innovative or progressive about the interference:

“The impact of China’s political influence activities on New Zealand democracy has been profound: a curtailing of freedom of speech, religion and association for the ethnic Chinese community, a silencing of debates on the People’s Republic of China in the wider public sphere, and a corrupting influence on the political system through the blurring of personal, political and economic interests.”

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Xi Jinping’s Power Grab and China’s World Domination Plan

READ MORE 

Canadians, most of whom never favored massive free trade deals or cozy relationships with one-party states, will now be asking one question:

When will their government climb down the tree and protect our national security interests?

At Davos this year, the big gabfest for the status quo, the Chinese predictably dominated events. At a session on how “global orders fail,” Fang Xinghai, the vice chairman of the Chinese government’s main securities regulator, lecturedthe audience, as superpowers like to do.

“You have to realize that democracy is not working very well,” Fang said. “You need political reforms in your countries.”

He’s right about that.

Checking the corrosive influence of the Chinese state in Canadian affairs is a good place to start.  [Tyee]

 

https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2019/01/31/Canada-Reckoning-China-Fingers-Po...

NorthReport

How ordinary Canadians view China and Meng’s case

 

Sabrina Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of the mainland telecommunications giant Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., was arrested by Canadian authorities on Dec. 1 at the request of the United States. 

Meng’s apprehension immediately sparked a diplomatic tiff between Canada and China. Two Canadian civilians were arrested in China on national security grounds. Then a Chinese court retried a drug smuggling case against a Canadian man and sentenced him to death.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau asked John McCallum, the country’s ambassador to China, to resign after he made personal comments on Meng’s case.

On Monday the US Department of Justice announced criminal charges against Huawei and is seeking Meng’s extradition to the United States.

Recently I have spoken with some of my Canadian friends to seek their take on the Huawei incident. Their views are a far cry from the opinions expressed in Chinese media.

Canadian newspaper Globe and Mail reported that Nanos Research, a prestigious market and public opinion research organization in the country, carried out a public opinion survey on the Huawei saga between Dec. 30, 2018 and Jan. 5, 2019.

The poll found that 56 percent of the Canadian respondents believed that Canada acted properly in detaining Meng and that her arrest the arrest was “primarily a justice issue”, whereas only 29 percent viewed her case as politically and economically motivated.

Meanwhile, 83 percent said they had negative or somewhat negative view of China’s one-party government, and 53 percent even considered Beijing as a threat to Canada’s national security.

In comparison, less than 10 percent said they had positive or somewhat positive view of the Chinese government.

A spokesperson for Nanos Research said the poll findings suggest that the Canadian government and politicians should be “extremely careful” in dealing with China from a political perspective, and that being either unfriendly or too friendly to China carried a “political risk”.

The sacking of McCallum for his remarks about Meng’s case is probably an immediate proof of it.

What the Nanos Research poll has provided are just figures and abstract conclusions. But how do ordinary Canadians really perceive Meng and Huawei?

One might still remember that back in the 1980s and 1990s, a large number of Hong Kong families emigrated to Canada to seek a new life.

The majestic and flamboyant “monster houses” built by these Hong Kong immigrants with deep pockets have raised quite a lot of eyebrows among local Canadians at the time.

Today these “monster houses” can still be found across well-heeled neighborhoods in the western part of Vancouver, many of which are now owned by cash-flush mainland Chinese.

Over the years, many local Canadians have sold their properties and moved inland in order to maintain their tranquil way of life.

Although Canada is known as a champion of cultural pluralism, many Canadians are actually getting increasingly dismayed at the influx of immigrants in recent years.

Many Canadians are no longer as friendly to new immigrants as they used to be.

Moreover, unlike the “melting pot” approach adopted by the US, which promotes the assimilation of new immigrants into the mainstream American culture, Canada not only allows but actually encourages new immigrants of different ethnicities to preserve their own cultural background and heritage.

As a result, in many local neighborhoods that are predominantly Chinese, the Chinese culture has become mainstream.

According to some of my students who pursued their studies in Canada, in Richmond, Vancouver, where the local population is overwhelmingly Chinese, many white native Canadians often feel that they are the ethnic minority when they walk in the neighborhood.

Still, no matter how Meng’s case is going to play out, an undercurrent of anti-Chinese sentiment may already be looming among the native Canadians.

This article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on Jan 30

Translation by Alan Lee with additional reporting

http://www.ejinsight.com/20190131-how-ordinary-canadians-view-china-and-...

NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport

Internal docs shows many federal departments not meeting gender analysis targets

https://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2019/02/02/internal-docs-shows-many-fe...

montgomery

NorthReport wrote:

 

The poll found that 56 percent of the Canadian respondents believed that Canada acted properly in detaining Meng and that her arrest the arrest was “primarily a justice issue”, whereas only 29 percent viewed her case as politically and economically motivated.

Meanwhile, 83 percent said they had negative or somewhat negative view of China’s one-party government, and 53 percent even considered Beijing as a threat to Canada’s national security.

In comparison, less than 10 percent said they had positive or somewhat positive view of the Chinese government.

There! There's proof that the Canadian people have been propagandized into believing US lies and hate propaganda against their economic competitors. In my opinion!

You fail to state your opinion? Posting a link and then posting the entire contents of a link, leaves us wondering?

NorthReport

Preaching violence Adam Vaughan needs to resign

https://globalnews.ca/news/4919221/doug-ford-adam-vaughan-whack/amp/

NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport

Canadians have to be the biggest bunch of whiners on the planet.

These crybabies need to get out and travel abroad and they would quickly realize they live in paradise 

https://globalnews.ca/news/4925521/western-canada-party-angus-reid-poll/amp/

montgomery

The Tyee thinks so and I think so too! What do you think?

NorthReport

Maybe Canadians will have to start supporting the NDP in much bigger numbers to keep the Tories from winning the election

https://nationalpost.com/opinion/john-ivison-tories-score-with-claim-trudeau-intends-to-raise-taxes-and-attack-on-his-family-fortune

voice of the damned

NorthReport wrote:

Canadians have to be the biggest bunch of whiners on the planet.

These crybabies need to get out and travel abroad and they would quickly realize they live in paradise 

https://globalnews.ca/news/4925521/western-canada-party-angus-reid-poll/amp/

"Yeah, sheesh, and what's with all these unionized workers whining about about how long it's been since their last wage increase? Don't they realize how good they've got it compared to the rest of the world?"

(^ Is usually the sort of context in which I hear that whole "Quit whining, Canada's the best country in the world" argument deployed.)

NorthReport

The Party’s over for the oil and gas industry. Albertans are fighting an uphill losing battle but they seem to be about the only ones who don’t get it

Perhaps had Albertans listened to PET and Canada had been allowed to set up a world class heritage fund there would be resources in the fund to properly shift gears into other more futuristic industries but no Albertans insisted on putting their faith in the oil and gas companies Too bad but Albertans have no one but no one to blame but themselves

I’m sure Richel Notley is fully aware of this but she realizes she can’t say these kind of things and expect to the win the next Alberta election while these whiners keep blaming others for their own stupidity

There are lots of jobs in some of the other provinces so Albertans need to get off their butts and move to where the jobs are now

voice of the damned

NorthReport wrote:

The Party’s over for the oil and gas industry. Albertans are fighting an uphill losing battle but they seem to be about the only ones who don’t get it

Yes, but I think you can make that point without resorting to claims that complainers are "crybabies" who don't realize how good they've got it compared to other countries. Because that argument, logically, can be used against almost anyone in Canada who complains about their lot.

NorthReport

Canada's PM Trudeau is facing a national energy crisis that's at the tipping point

  • The province of Alberta is Canada's main oil producer: 97 percent of the country's proven reserves can be found in its oil sands.
  • The Alberta oil sands already produce 3.6 million barrels of oil per day, and plans are to increase that to 3.9 million by 2027.
  • Low oil prices has put the Alberta economy in crisis, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said.
  • A second oil pipeline that would run through British Columbia to the west coast could solve that problem and boost exports to Asia, helping to get the oil revenue-dependent province back on track.

 

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/03/12/trudeau-faces-a-national-energy-crisis-t...

NorthReport

What happened to Trudeau's promise of democratic government?

 Justin Trudeau/Facebook

Justin Trudeau spoke to the press last week about the fiasco that has enveloped his government following the demotion, then resignation, of former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould from cabinet.

I have "learned some lessons," said the prime minister. He plans to seek outside advice on clarifying relations between political staff and ministers, the concentration of power in his office, and the role that lobbying plays in policy development.

When Brian Mulroney formed his majority government in 1984, he created a highly paid political "chief of staff" position for each minister, someone to give partisan policy advice, short-circuiting the public service.

Mulroney did not have much time for public servants. His campaign promise was to hand out "pink slips and running shoes" to federal government employees.

Every government since Mulroney has used political staff in big roles. Deputy ministers are second-guessed by staffers looking for partisan advantage.

While senior public officials serve the government of the day, political staff serve the minister, and their loyalty is to the party first.

It would be wise of Trudeau to move away from the Mulroney style of partisan government. Political staff should be focused on party business.

Policy development needs to be done with public servants, experts, and the public, not directed from the prime minister's office (PMO) by political staff.

Lobbyists figured out some time ago they should be targeting political staff. The prominence staffers have had in Ottawa has attracted attention from all kinds of industries looking for favourable treatment. 

A key Trudeau aide, Gerald Butts (who resigned in the fallout over the Wilson-Raybould departure) spent hours being lobbied by oil and gas officials, though the Liberals were elected fighting climate change.

Forcing lobbyists to operate openly in the public sphere is a better way to go for any government. Inviting participation in parliamentary committee hearings beats letting political staff interact with the rich and powerful.

The Ottawa parliamentary committee system does run up against excessive partisanship; but it also allows for MPs to become knowledgeable on subjects that affect the daily lives of Canadians. Calling on experts, video conferencing, and online streaming, are all techniques that can build public participation in policy development.

Industries defending pipeline expansion or use of chemical fertilizers should have to make their case in open sessions, also attended by critics. Giving voice and access to critical voices adjusts the balance of political forces at play away from one that favours corporations, as in the lobbying scenario.

In Canada the centralization of power in the hands of the prime minister dates from Pierre Elliott Trudeau and the election of 1968. Journalist Walter Stewart wrote about "the super group" around Pierre Trudeau that was determined to wrestle influence away from the senior public servants who, behind the scenes, made cabinet government work.

Wartime preparation from 1939 to 1945 and postwar planning undertaken in the early 1940s demanded more knowledge, technical skills, and social science than any cabinet could muster. It fell to public servants to take the lead.

Working together to build inter-departmental consensus, senior public servants communicated their agreed proposals to cabinet ministers, whose job was mainly to sell them to the country.

This was the system Pierre Trudeau discovered when he worked at the Privy Council office after the war. It was still operating when he came to Parliament in 1965. Before he became prime minister, Trudeau had concluded it gave elected representatives short shrift, weakening electoral democracy. 

For Pierre Trudeau the elected representatives of the people should do the thinking and the deciding, not the appointed public servants.

In implanting his ideas about proceeding democratically, Trudeau turned to his own thinkers.

Advisers Jim Davey and Marc Lalonde came up with the system of cabinet committees where ministers would hash out what to do, with senior officials providing background and options, and not neatly packaged policies to be adopted. 

The result was to give more power to the centre to make the agenda, choose priorities, and frame discussions. Prime ministerial government was born and remains in place to this day.

Cabinet government -- where ministers take responsibility for their portfolios -- has been correspondingly downgraded.  

Pierre Trudeau thought the Liberal Party could be a privileged vehicle for policy development.

With his longtime associate Gérard Pelletier, Trudeau devised a system of funding social activists so as to bring new voices into public debate.

When those voices, specifically feminist ones, became too critical, their funding was withdrawn by Mulroney and then Chrétien. Stephen Harper pulled the plug on any remaining support for social activists.

As it turned out, prime ministerial government and neoliberalism worked well together, from the time of anti-inflation austerity in the early 1980s, through corporate trade deals, to moving from a social welfare regime to a security state after 2001.

Despite his campaign promises, Justin Trudeau has been unable to abandon centralized power. His chosen style of governance is through emphasizing public relations; it is wearing thin, not just in Canada, but in France, and elsewhere.

Governments today need to engage with the public on issues in a more meaningful fashion than through talking points and message boxes.

Bringing the lobbyists out of the back rooms, giving public servants more responsibility for policy development in the various departments of government, and keeping political staffers from substituting themselves for ministers would be a good start to improving democratic government in Canada.

Duncan Cameron is president emeritus of rabble.ca and writes a weekly column on politics and current affairs.

Photo: Justin Trudeau/Facebook

Help make rabble sustainable. Please consider supporting our work with a monthly donation. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

 

 

http://rabble.ca/columnists/2019/03/what-happened-trudeaus-promise-democ...

NorthReport

Well the spoiled brats Canadians actually need to get out and travel around the planet and get over their minor inconveniences in Canada compared to most other people on the planet. I have never ever heard such a bunch of adult crybabies in all my life.

voice of the damned wrote:

NorthReport wrote:

The Party’s over for the oil and gas industry. Albertans are fighting an uphill losing battle but they seem to be about the only ones who don’t get it

Yes, but I think you can make that point without resorting to claims that complainers are "crybabies" who don't realize how good they've got it compared to other countries. Because that argument, logically, can be used against almost anyone in Canada who complains about their lot.

NorthReport
R.E.Wood

Any thoughts on this speculation that Trudeau may call a surprise early election? 

Trudeau likely to call early May federal election

Is Justin Trudeau really relaxing in Florida this week to recharge his batteries and forget about the SNC Lavalin  scandal? Or is he getting ready to hit the road for a re-election campaign?

Several good sources tell me that Trudeau will soon pull the trigger on an early May election. It makes a lot of sense. He cannot have this story  follow him for the next six months. So after his party tables a good news budget, he will tell Canadians that he did the right thing by asking Jody Wilson-Raybould, the Minister of Justice and Attorney General at the time, to intervene in an ongoing criminal prosecution case against SNC Lavalin. He wanted to save jobs and if the opposition has a problem with that he will let the people decide.

Several suppliers who are called upon by candidates in   federal elections have told me they were contacted already to  be prepared to  start printing material soon for a May vote. This  would catch the  opposition  off guard. The Tories  do not have all of their candidates (plus they have Maxim Bernier set to split votes in different ridings), the NDP are a mess and the Bloc Québecois are just getting to know their new leader.

Trudeau will clearly dump the disloyal Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott. The Tories  would be wise to recruit them.

http://www.thesuburban.com/blogs/cohen_confidential_with_mike_cohen/trud...

cco

Put me down for "the election will happen on October 21st, as scheduled by the fixed-date law". That gives Trudeau the whole summer to hand out goodies and try to change the channel.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..yes he can pull a martin.

wage zombie

R.E.Wood wrote:

Any thoughts on this speculation that Trudeau may call a surprise early election? 

Not credible.

Sean in Ottawa

Not sure if Trudeau is that stupid but I am not placing any bets.

NorthReport
NorthReport

It’s now a fact - this Liberal coverup that is

Trudeau is dumber that even I thought he was!

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/justice-committee-wilson-raybould-trudeau-1.5052976

NorthReport

Thank goodness for Singh’s sensible leadership on this issue

The Boeing 737 Max Reversal Just Shows Canadians that Team Trudeau is Flying Blind

https://www.thestar.com/politics/political-opinion/2019/03/13/the-boeing-737-max-reversal-shows-team-trudeau-is-flying-blind.html

NorthReport

 

The more one sees of the Team Trudeau the more smoke and mirrors is what you get

Report raises fresh doubts about the benefits of Trudeau’s 188 billion dollar Infrastructure Plan

https://nationalpost.com/news/report-raises-fresh-doubts-over-economic-benefits-of-trudeaus-188-billion-infrastructure-plan

 

NorthReport

This is just right-wing BS

Trudeau has as much right to vacation time as any other working class person in Canada, eh!

https://nationalpost.com/news/canada/midway-through-florida-vacation-trudeau-jets-back-to-ottawa-for-day-of-private-meetings

cco

We clearly have different definitions of "working class".

NorthReport
NorthReport
NorthReport

 

I do do not know how Trudeau is going to survive this scandal

https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=K4Vx6kmfutc

NorthReport

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